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#27 Jun 27 2013 at 4:29 AM Rating: Default
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Xoie wrote:
FilthMcNasty wrote:
Yoshi also used an example to talk about consistent income, but what guarantees that a subscriber keeps their subscription running?


"Guarantee" is a legal term that's not really applicable to this situation.


I'm pretty sure you know what this means, but I'll break it down. What assurance do you have that a month to month subscriber can be counted on to support a game into the future? The way he states it makes it sound like he's sure there is no way you'll lose half of your subscribers in a month. It wouldn't have bothered me as much as it did if he hadn't decided to kick the already down SWtoR, perhaps not realizing that they had almost accomplished the very feat he claims isn't going to happen.

Xoie wrote:
But it is human nature not to immediately cancel a service you no longer want if it automatically renews itself.


I cancelled Netflix the day I signed up for it. I used the service and then made the decision whether or not to keep it. Should XIV launch with a free trial that renews automatically, I will either pay with crysta(of which I currently have none registered to my account) as a payment method or I will cancel immediately. Was I wrong in thinking that this was what everyone did to avoid unexpected charges showing up on their account?

Even if I didn't do it for all services, SE's would definitely get the extra scrutiny due to the POL fiasco from FFXI days. I wonder how many thousands of dollars they made double charging people multiple times for a month's service?

Xoie wrote:
That's why in a subscription model, income doesn't really dwindle as fast as on a per-use basis (like in an F2P model). Even if most people really wanted out, it would be some time before everyone who wanted to quit actually took the time to quit, and during that time, most of those subscription dollars would still be coming in. But, if you're not playing an F2P game, you're not buying that F2P game's crap. There's no revenue in that case.


I can't speak for everyone, but you've seen the way I run recurring charge subscription fees. Cancelling service on a Square Enix ID requires 5 steps that can be executed in not so many minutes.

FWIW I would have loved to see Yoshi address this in his post...

"The reason why we are sticking with a subscription model is that people are dumb, lazy or a combination of the two. They can't be bothered to take a few minutes out of their time(read: money) to cancel their subscription regardless of whether or not they feel the service is worth it."

Edited, Jun 27th 2013 6:30am by FilthMcNasty
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#28 Jun 27 2013 at 4:49 AM Rating: Decent
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Xoie wrote:
FilthMcNasty wrote:
Yoshi also used an example to talk about consistent income, but what guarantees that a subscriber keeps their subscription running?


"Guarantee" is a legal term that's not really applicable to this situation.

But it is human nature not to immediately cancel a service you no longer want if it automatically renews itself. That's why whenever possible, companies will try to get you into "Opt Out" policies or its close cousin, "The First Month Is Free," as in, you'll be billed continuously for something you might not want or use anymore, unless you take the steps to opt out. The reason is, people put it off. They don't have time to deal with the hassle, there's still time to deal with it later, they forget about it, next thing you know they're paying for another month.

That's why in a subscription model, income doesn't really dwindle as fast as on a per-use basis (like in an F2P model). Even if most people really wanted out, it would be some time before everyone who wanted to quit actually took the time to quit, and during that time, most of those subscription dollars would still be coming in. But, if you're not playing an F2P game, you're not buying that F2P game's crap. There's no revenue in that case.


That's pretty ridiculous. I can't think of a time in my life where I was just like "oh I forgot to cancel my monthly game subscription. oops. oh well, I'll just get around to it next month".

I used to cancel my Wow sub all the time when we would go on vacation and I wouldn't be playing much that month, but then again, I'm not shooting barrels of money outta my ***.

In a F2P model, using similar logic to what you think nets these companies money, they could be banking on dumb asses just randomly hitting the wrong buttons on the screen and being charged $15 for a frilly pink bunny hat just as commonly as someone not dropping their sub. Smiley: oyvey
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#29 Jun 27 2013 at 5:14 AM Rating: Excellent
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Whether or not money generated by XIV goes to XIV is a valid concern, and can really invalidate the pros of the sub model. Anyone who played FFXI from basically 2008-present can attest to that, as money it made assuredly went to XIV as well as leaving XI with a skeleton crew.
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#30 Jun 27 2013 at 6:42 AM Rating: Decent
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There is no guarantee that XIV will be largely profitable. But there isn't any guarantee it will not be profitable.

In one way, one can see it as Yoshi ignoring trends. But on the other hand, maybe SE's ability to develop being funded internally. Gives them an opportunity to do things that those trending companies are not allowed. When this game releases and if the P2P stands plus delivers profit. It will be a message to investors and F2P games. That message will be to have some patience and allow the game developers to do their job. And regardless of "Everybody else is doing it",that doesn't mean that is the only working solution.

I never believed that every ounce of revenue a game made goes directly back into development on that franchise or title. Except if that title is the only game in that companies line-up. If that were true, World Of Warcraft would have two-three times the content of Everquest and Final Fantasy XI combined.

Edited, Jun 27th 2013 8:44am by sandpark
#31 Jun 27 2013 at 7:13 AM Rating: Good
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FilthMcNasty wrote:
SE's goal for breakeven on FFXI was amassing 200k subs over a timeline spread over several years. Their budget was said to be roughly 25 million dollars, which is extremely low for a game these days. In order to make that happen they had to cut a lot of corners like not having costs associated with setting up and maintaining regional servers.

Not a jab at you, but I find it incredibly hard to believe that any modern MMO could claw it's way out of the red on 50k subs unless they weren't looking to profit for a decade.


FFXI development costs are estimated anywhere from 17-25 mil, so 25 mil is the absolute highest it might have been. At 200k subs, it would have taken FFXI 9 months to completely recoup their development costs and start making profit. Even at 100k subs it would have been well under 2 years. When the game came out in North America, they had 500,000 subscribers before even launching on PS2. Yes those numbers weren't consistent for the long term, but they stayed around there for at least 6 months after PS3 release. It certainly didn't take them several years to recoup their costs. Even at 50k subs, the game would have recouped the 25 million in exactly 3 years, not the decade you are estimating.

FilthMcNasty wrote:
People vastly overstate the effect of F2P. Not sure if you have played any F2P games recently, but for the most part all content remains the same as it would were you a subscriber. The bonuses you get are things like increased inventory space, lower cooldowns on dungeons and the like. Things that are more convenient (if you spam dungeons or have an aversion to using the auction house), but are far from inconvenient if you don't. Probably more than 90% of all things obtained through cash shops these days are vanity items.


That's a bit of an exaggeration. Lotro is one of the biggest F2P games on the market. In order to level effectively (without spending thousands of hours turbine point grinding) you need to buy quest packs, expansions, raid content, etc. Much of the game is roped off to those trying the F2P model. You can't even PvP if you don't pay a sub. Swtor, another of the biggest F2P games, is the same. You can't do any raid content, you level up slower, you can do 5 PvP warzones a week (which is basically nothing), etc etc. Both games also sell tons of useful gear, XP bonuses, warzone bonuses, etc. in their shops which are definitely not just vanity items. Same goes for DnD. Same goes for a lot of F2P games. Yes, there are also games where most of the cash shop is vanity items, but I don't think it's 90% at all. Just my observations.
#32 Jun 27 2013 at 7:20 AM Rating: Excellent
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The minute this starts getting ugly I'm locking it. For now you are all doing a pretty good job of staying civil, but we've had this argument many times before.
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#33 Jun 27 2013 at 7:33 AM Rating: Excellent
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I think the most important thing is to be consistent. If they say P2P is their model, stick with it and don't waffle around. There's nothing wrong with the sub model if you've made a game worth playing. If it's garbage, choose F2P. Why you ask? Because you can extract a bunch of money from idiots quick and dirty while they're still in the honeymoon phase with your product. Down the road when they realize it's not all it's cracked up to be and walk away, you've already made some money on them. The sub model takes time and patience to get money out of people over and above the initial cost of the game.

If anything for me a P2P model emphasizes a company's commitment to their product's longevity and stability because they're willing to choose a more conservative and reliable pricing model with a level income stream. Slow and steady wins the race and all that.
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#34 Jun 27 2013 at 7:41 AM Rating: Excellent
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FilthMcNasty wrote:
Ravashack wrote:
FilthMcNasty wrote:
Exactly what is meant by 'smoother experience'?


Example of a "not as smooth" experience.

You just leveled up. You go assign bonus stats. SUDDENLY a small notification pops up, letting you know that for the cost of $6.00, you get to reassign those stats if you need to!

People vastly overstate the effect of F2P. Not sure if you have played any F2P games recently, but for the most part all content remains the same as it would were you a subscriber. The bonuses you get are things like increased inventory space, lower cooldowns on dungeons and the like. Things that are more convenient (if you spam dungeons or have an aversion to using the auction house), but are far from inconvenient if you don't. Probably more than 90% of all things obtained through cash shops these days are vanity items.

I could give you several examples of games whose producers have allowed these items purchased in the cash shop to be obtained with in-game currency that anyone who played normally as a free game could obtain(at the cost of time farming of course).

Bottom line: There is a right and a wrong way to do it. Most people just assume the worst despite all of the recent examples that it has been refined in a manner that has no adverse affect on those who wish to play the game without paying.


You wanted to know what he meant about a "smoother experience," so I provided you a real example converted into FFXIV terms of what can make a F2P games not as smooth. Whether or not the F2P game has full content or not is completely irrelevant to the explanation about a "smoother experience." Path of Exile and Neverwinter, for example, both have "full content" but their level of intrusion is totally different.
#35 Jun 27 2013 at 8:49 AM Rating: Excellent
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#36 Jun 27 2013 at 9:49 AM Rating: Excellent
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Wint wrote:
The minute this starts getting ugly I'm locking it. For now you are all doing a pretty good job of staying civil, but we've had this argument many times before.


But Wint, as long as there is even a scrap of flesh on the carcass, the horse may not be entirely dead.
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#37 Jun 27 2013 at 10:05 AM Rating: Excellent
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sandpark wrote:
I never believed that every ounce of revenue a game made goes directly back into development on that franchise or title. Except if that title is the only game in that companies line-up. If that were true, World Of Warcraft would have two-three times the content of Everquest and Final Fantasy XI combined.

I mentioned XI because it obviously suffered. Maybe it was deliberate in hopes people would migrate to XIV, but that's basically tinfoil hat territory. So, while a steady, projected budget may allow some more stability, there's a part of me that feels a smart F2P model would keep devs honest while also guiding them to create the content people are apparently willing to pay for. Personally, I'm skeptical manpower fluctuation is so erratic on a monthly basis, and something as immense as an MMO will best benefit from keeping the same people on-hand as long as possible to maintain familiarity. So, yes, at times of release or even expansions, you'll have extra bodies for both production and testing, though I suspect the "variable" aspect in lulls will involve fewer artists and sound guys because those are also among the easiest things to out-source aside from play-testing.

As for WoW, I want to feel like Blizzard is simply too arrogant and fallen into a state of complacency, not only in the MMO scene, but ALL their games. SC2 got a lukewarm reception. D3 sold well, but played like *** and is still in desperate need of some gameplay updates to make progression reasonable without jumping to the (real money) auction house. More specific to WoW and developing content, however, i will say there is such a thing as potentially developing too much, and the reason is also the root of the casual/hardcore debate: Time. And while some might claim it justification for even more hardcore content as they'll be the likely consumers, I'd actually disagree since such users are probably within the 10-20% range of any game's population. And sure, they might love to play the loyalty card, but I can't say I've played a game where the devs really care how long you've subbed and those who have munched through their content will certainly be demanding more. Either way, they got your money. Those invested are also likely to put up with more **** because they don't want their time to be perceived a waste, hence a complacency in knowing that even if the devs can do better, they can get away with being mediocre. Doubly so if you're pretty much guaranteed $X per month. Would you work harder if that could possibly be 0? While unlikely in this genre, I'd say so.
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#38 Jun 27 2013 at 10:09 AM Rating: Good
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sandpark wrote:
A staff member at mmorpg has just posted his first impression.
Have a look at it.
http://www.mmorpg.com/gamelist.cfm/game/446/feature/7532/First-Impressions.html



MMORPG wrote:
I spent some time with it over the weekend, and am pleased to say that a turnaround is definitely possible.


Definitely possible? That implies it hasn't happened yet, but could.

Erroneous, due to the fact that it doesn't take more than 30 minutes playing the game to realize a complete 180 has occurred.

Edited, Jun 27th 2013 8:50pm by Parathyroid
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#39 Jun 27 2013 at 10:51 AM Rating: Excellent
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Seriha wrote:
sandpark wrote:
I never believed that every ounce of revenue a game made goes directly back into development on that franchise or title. Except if that title is the only game in that companies line-up. If that were true, World Of Warcraft would have two-three times the content of Everquest and Final Fantasy XI combined.

I mentioned XI because it obviously suffered. Maybe it was deliberate in hopes people would migrate to XIV, but that's basically tinfoil hat territory. So, while a steady, projected budget may allow some more stability, there's a part of me that feels a smart F2P model would keep devs honest while also guiding them to create the content people are apparently willing to pay for. Personally, I'm skeptical manpower fluctuation is so erratic on a monthly basis, and something as immense as an MMO will best benefit from keeping the same people on-hand as long as possible to maintain familiarity. So, yes, at times of release or even expansions, you'll have extra bodies for both production and testing, though I suspect the "variable" aspect in lulls will involve fewer artists and sound guys because those are also among the easiest things to out-source aside from play-testing.

As for WoW, I want to feel like Blizzard is simply too arrogant and fallen into a state of complacency, not only in the MMO scene, but ALL their games. SC2 got a lukewarm reception. D3 sold well, but played like *** and is still in desperate need of some gameplay updates to make progression reasonable without jumping to the (real money) auction house. More specific to WoW and developing content, however, i will say there is such a thing as potentially developing too much, and the reason is also the root of the casual/hardcore debate: Time. And while some might claim it justification for even more hardcore content as they'll be the likely consumers, I'd actually disagree since such users are probably within the 10-20% range of any game's population. And sure, they might love to play the loyalty card, but I can't say I've played a game where the devs really care how long you've subbed and those who have munched through their content will certainly be demanding more. Either way, they got your money. Those invested are also likely to put up with more sh*t because they don't want their time to be perceived a waste, hence a complacency in knowing that even if the devs can do better, they can get away with being mediocre. Doubly so if you're pretty much guaranteed $X per month. Would you work harder if that could possibly be 0? While unlikely in this genre, I'd say so.


The F2P just seems like a scam, unless everything you can buy is cents on the doller price range 10cents to 25 cents an item or raid then mabe it would be better, but if the costs of items would break what a normal sub would cost then its a scam in my eyes. The way i look at it i would work harder to provide a better gamr knowing i have a steady paycheck every month. Hourly pay is always better then commission only pay from what iv worked.
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#40 Jun 27 2013 at 11:07 AM Rating: Good
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Some games do it wrong, of course, but I'd never say it's impossible. Of course, for all the long-time subbers willing to put up with sub-par service, I'd say there are plenty of suckers who drop more cash than they should on things. I think the industry tends to refer to them as whales.
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#41 Jun 27 2013 at 11:48 AM Rating: Decent
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sandpark wrote:
I said previously that I prefer 100 unique exhaustive quests over 10,000 more generic ones. But that is not the way mmos work if they want to retain players over long durations. Well I hope he doesn't down score ARR in his review later because every mmo does this basically.



this.. Id say 75% of FFXIs quests were "exciting" and they didnt have 10,000 of them.. heck I dont even think they had 1000... and I can barely name 10 that were "go collect xxx amount of this item and turn them to me" quests... i know teh qudav helm one for sure and the ladybug wings one because I used to farm those for gil at low levels
#42 Jun 27 2013 at 11:50 AM Rating: Default
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Parathyroid wrote:
sandpark wrote:
A staff member at mmorpg has just posted his first impression.
Have a look at it.
http://www.mmorpg.com/gamelist.cfm/game/446/feature/7532/First-Impressions.html



[quote-MMORPG]I spent some time with it over the weekend, and am pleased to say that a turnaround is definitely possible.


Definitely possible? That implies it hasn't happened yet, but could.

Erroneous, due to the fact that it doesn't take more than 30 minutes playing the game to realize a complete 180 has occurred.[/quote]


well if you wanna be technical "completely different" from teh original does no t equal better game/great product.. it could simply mean "its nothing like that last pile of crap but its still a pile of crap"
#43 Jun 27 2013 at 12:04 PM Rating: Decent
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DuoMaxwellxx wrote:
sandpark wrote:
I said previously that I prefer 100 unique exhaustive quests over 10,000 more generic ones. But that is not the way mmos work if they want to retain players over long durations. Well I hope he doesn't down score ARR in his review later because every mmo does this basically.



this.. Id say 75% of FFXIs quests were "exciting" and they didnt have 10,000 of them.. heck I dont even think they had 1000... and I can barely name 10 that were "go collect xxx amount of this item and turn them to me" quests... i know teh qudav helm one for sure and the ladybug wings one because I used to farm those for gil at low levels

I especially hate the types of quests that consist of talk to npc, talk to next npc ten feet away, return to original npc. trade item, then quest complete. I'd rather they throw in some intriguing(giving you fact about something you didn't know)story, or a bit of mystery to be solved and let the factors for completion be more than just walk,trade, & complete.
#44 Jun 27 2013 at 12:16 PM Rating: Good
[quote-MMORPG]I spent some time with it over the weekend, and am pleased to say that a turnaround is definitely possible.[/quote]

Definitely possible? That implies it hasn't happened yet, but could.

Erroneous, due to the fact that it doesn't take more than 30 minutes playing the game to realize a complete 180 has occurred.[/quote]

I read this post in Spock's voice.

Edited, Jun 27th 2013 1:16pm by Onionthiefx
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#45 Jun 27 2013 at 12:52 PM Rating: Decent
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BartelX wrote:
Even at 50k subs, the game would have recouped the 25 million in exactly 3 years, not the decade you are estimating.

Yes, it's completely within reason to expect to recover your development costs assuming you don't have to operate and maintain your servers. Employees don't need to get paid either. We all know that there are absolutely no costs associated with developing the content updates or expansions either. Development costs are what it takes to get your game up and running for launch. The 17-25 million doesn't factor in any further costs that come after launch. Why doesn't anyone consider that?




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30 bucks is almost free

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Its personal preference and all, but yes we need to educate WoW players that this is OUR game, these are Characters and not Toons. Time to beat that into them one at a time.
#46 Jun 27 2013 at 1:23 PM Rating: Good
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So the entire first impression is "yeah it's nice but it could be F2P"? If they used the first impression of the beta and compared it with some of 1.0s really bad stuff like the sluggish UI it would been a much more interesting article.
#47 Jun 27 2013 at 1:25 PM Rating: Decent
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Solonuke wrote:
So the entire first impression is "yeah it's nice but it could be F2P"? If they used the first impression of the beta and compared it with some of 1.0s really bad stuff like the sluggish UI it would been a much more interesting article.


Not really. Nobody gives a crap that it's "much better than 1.0". Yeah, so is just about every MMORPG.

I hope the official reviews stray away from that, and just judge it as an individual game, instead of giving it bonus points, as in "at least it's better than before".
#48 Jun 27 2013 at 1:25 PM Rating: Excellent
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In my opinion, anyone trying to give an impression having not completed the mission content, getting to 20, joining a GC and getting your chocobo, truly hasn't experienced enough yet.
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#49 Jun 27 2013 at 1:28 PM Rating: Good
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FilthMcNasty wrote:
BartelX wrote:
Even at 50k subs, the game would have recouped the 25 million in exactly 3 years, not the decade you are estimating.

Yes, it's completely within reason to expect to recover your development costs assuming you don't have to operate and maintain your servers. Employees don't need to get paid either. We all know that there are absolutely no costs associated with developing the content updates or expansions either. Development costs are what it takes to get your game up and running for launch. The 17-25 million doesn't factor in any further costs that come after launch. Why doesn't anyone consider that?


Actually, I had considered that. I said to recoup the 25 million. Even so, I don't think it would take a decade to get out of the red even at 50k subs for them. At that amount, they are making ~750k a month. I don't think their monthly costs would be anywhere even close to that, but I'm not a developer so I can't say for sure. Also, since it was more of a "what-if" scenario, considering the game has never even come close to plummeting to 50k subs, it's kind of a moot point, no?

Regardless of all that, this is FFXIV and the dev costs are clearly more than 25 mil, and they are clearly looking to maintain more than 50k subs, so this is a much different scenario. I'm pretty confident the game will start out quite strong, probably hit 1 million subs (just basing it off the 900k+ beta requests and considering they haven't even really started the bigtime advertising they've said they would; namely television advertisements and widespread internet ads). I think it will dwindle somewhat after that, as pretty much all new release games do, but I think they can hold a steady 500k subs for quite some time, especially if they keep pumping out content, which all signs point to them doing. And if they can hold onto 500k, I'd consider that a success. Who knows, they could do considerably better than that, or possibly worse. Only time will tell, but it's definitely fun to take a stab at it.

Edited, Jun 27th 2013 3:31pm by BartelX
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#50 Jun 27 2013 at 2:23 PM Rating: Good
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Thayos wrote:
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We've already had a thread about this. Please, no F2P.


The only reason P2P will fail is if SE doesn't adequately produce new content for the game.

In other words, success is SE's to lose.


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#51 Jun 27 2013 at 2:24 PM Rating: Default
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Wint wrote:
In my opinion, anyone trying to give an impression having not completed the mission content, getting to 20, joining a GC and getting your chocobo, truly hasn't experienced enough yet.


I Did! It's the same as 1.0 but with a new coat of paint.

Which btw i am not saying is bad nor good for that meter.
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