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Thread: Final Fantasy XIV

  1. #1
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    Default Final Fantasy XIV

    So, here's a thread to kind of poll folks about this upcoming AAA subscription-based MMO from everyone's favorite Japanese gaming company: SquareEnix. (WEBSITE HERE)

    I'm wondering if there are folks in R-L who have their eyes on this title. I'm also wondering if anyone has actually managed to get into the beta (which appears to be relatively small compared to the number of people interested) and might care to share some thoughts.

    Servers will (shockingly, I know) not be region-locked, which is a plus for those of us interested in playing with our long-lost EU buddies.

    Game supports an interesting development system in which your can build up competency in multiple things given enough time, allowing your character to switch roles readily. Going from gatherer to craftsman to magician to fighter and back again is as easy as switching your gear.

    In any case, I like the look of the game. My app for beta has been unsuccessful, sadly. I'm seriously contemplating playing from the beginning though.

    Any interest lads and ladies?
    Inactive Legion Soldiers:
    EQII - Khammar | PS - KarmicRevenge | EVE - J Ambition |WoW - Corwynn | AoC - Decimus | WAR - Iraomi

  2. #2
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    I got in to the beta, but haven't actually tried it yet. I'm downloading the client as I type this. So I'll see how it goes when it's done and there's a test up.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lyoth View Post
    ...Forming any opinion on the weight of a single trailer is retarded.

  3. #3
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    The last game was eye-wrenchingly frustratingly grindy, so unless a miracle has happened, I won't be touching it.

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    Well, miracles do happen, and if that's the reason for your trepidation I'd say you've got good reason to consider the newest title. You have to remember that FFXI was of the pre-WoW generation. Back when we still had to group to do things. (Insert wistful sigh!) Heck, "quest" was just a word people used and not a gameplay mechanic back in the day, remember? FFXIV is a post-WoW game which offers soloability while encouraging grouping and gives you a much more modern and "westernized" game.

    The grind is there (as it is with every MMO), but it's better hidden and more casual-friendly than FFXI was/is. Everything I've seen/read so far indicates that this is a fair departure from the last FF MMO.

    In any case, it certainly doesn't look anywhere near Aion levels of grindage, which is of course the last big title to come out of Asia.

    Be interested to hear what you experience Oni. Let us know when you've had a chance to poke about a bit.

    Like I said, I'm leaning towards playing. I think it looks good (run the benchmark tool for a sample), sounds good (you cannot argue that the soundtrack fails, even if it's not your thing), and from everything I've been able to ascertain should play well enough.
    Inactive Legion Soldiers:
    EQII - Khammar | PS - KarmicRevenge | EVE - J Ambition |WoW - Corwynn | AoC - Decimus | WAR - Iraomi

  5. #5
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    True about the pre-WoW idea, but it is also a dominant style of the majority of eastern MMOs (here's looking at you, Aion), so I'm not convinced that even with WoW's influence things will change.

  6. #6
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    Aion's grind wasn't too bad compared to some of the older Korean MMOs (Lineage 2), or even compared to some western ones (Vanguard).



    I signed up for this beta months ago, but heard nothing yet. I know of one person testing it from Ginnunga, which isn't that many considering how many of them signed up.
    Currently doing the dad thing more than gaming

  7. #7
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    I didn't mean to imply that WoW's influence was key, either.

    It's simply an easy way to put it.

    Nor do I discount Aion (I played, and I grinded, but the timing was wrong for me to be getting into a game deeply, so I didn't), though I think we can mitigate it to an extent by saying that NCSoft's Korean studios are VERY traditionally Asian and still inamoured of their Lineage (and L2) history, while SquareEnix has shown more flexibility. (I wonder to an extent how the acquisition of Eidos has affected SquareEnix.)

    Let me drop a timeline here to make my point a bit more clear.

    1997 - Ultima Online: No real questing, advancement was through skill use, thus doing something a lot (grinding) was they key to success. Characters could lose skills, meaning they had to keep doing things a lot (grinding) in order to stay in shape. Additionally you could change what you were good at but that meant more repetition (grinding) of the new skill you wanted to be good at. Typically only a very few actions need be undertaken by a character in order to fight. Had crafting.

    1998 - Lineage: Perhaps the defining stroke of early Asian MMO development, you pretty much had no choice but to slaughter hordes (and I do mean Mega-Mongol-Ghengis-Khan-Hordes) of critters to advance. PvP was a heavy factor in the game. Note that in specific the KOREAN games take a lot from Lineage!

    1999 - EverQuest: A convoluted quest system which triggered off of keywords that were not always readily apparent allowed you to get some special items, but did pretty much nothing for your advancement. This meant long hours of (grouped, usually) killing creatures in order to gain experience and obtain gear. Slow-paced and limited. Some classes barely needed to do anything aside from attack and perhaps press another one or two buttons every once in a while. It had a new kind of content in "raids" designed to get huge numbers of players involved in extended battles, often dedicating entire days to defeating huge adversaries. Had crafting.

    1999 - Asheron's Call: A game with a very heavy emphasis on earning experience through repetitive killing in order to increase one's skills. Generally the most effective method of advancement was to find a prime spawn of creatures (such spawns were semi-random) and proceed to exploit those spawned resources until one's skills were sufficient to move on, or the spawn dried up. Quests existed in the game and were more user-friendly than in EverQuest but they took a backseat to the wholesale slaughter of creatures. The game was a bit faster-paced than EQ, and in it's magic system offered a wide variety of abilities though was changed when the math behind it was decoded by the community. Had crafting.

    2001 - THE NEW SHIT (2nd Gen)

    2001 - Anarchy Online: A different genre than it's predecessor's, yet one cloaked in conventionality. Stealth played it's role, as did "magic" in the form of nanobots. Important to note that this game had only 2 servers and they were global. Slow-ish gameplay, but certainly faster than EverQuest. Featured a much more quest-like mission system and offered for the first time the ground-breaking feature: instances.

    2001 - Dark Age of Camelot: Adding it's own twist in Realm versus Realm (vs. Realm) this game featured similar speed to AO with a large number of classes spread across the three realms, thus offering a great deal of variety. A more advanced "quest" system was featured, though a fair bit of the game was still tied up in slaughtering hordes of mythical Arthurian beasties.

    2002 - Final Fantasy XI: Drawing on the lore of the legendary series, the gameplay owed much to those games which had been released in the years leading up to FFXI's launch and in specific, Sony's (developed by Verant/989 Studios) EverQuest which was a prime influence: FFXI was announced in 2000 as it had been given a green light rapidly following the release of EQ and the subscriber explosion Sony saw as a result. It was heavy on grind, and grouping. It was slow-paced by modern standards, but still quicker than some earlier titles. It featured "raid" content which was heavily patterned after EverQuest and then taken to new extremes. It offered more abilities than some of the previous MMOs in part due to the large number of "Jobs" available: something perhaps influenced by games like AO and DAoC. Global cross-platform servers allowed for lower production costs. (Influenced in part by Funcom's Rubi-Ka perhaps?)

    2003 - Second Life: Semi-unique this entry into the market really proved the point that having virtual lives is of interest, and emergent gameplay can be counted upon.

    2003 - EVE Online: A game that has proven that there is room for something very different. It's key features include the player-driven economy and single-universe (3, actually, but most of the world plays on one) server.

    2003 - Lineage II: Grind redoubled, the Korean MMO from NCSoft hit Asia like a Tsunami. It enjoyed a fair bit of success in the west as well.

    2004 - City of Heroes: Genre-expanding superhero MMO with an emphasis on character creation shows the world that people really do like to dress up their alter-egos. Power system allows for (moderate) customization which is unique at the time.

    2004 - HEAD TO HEAD DEATHMATCH THAT CHANGED THE "GEN" (3rd Gen)

    2004 - EverQuest II: A huge departure from the original EverQuest, the game held close ties with the original while innovating. First game to have such a huge number of quests in it. Perhaps to this date unsurpassed in sheer quest volume. Wide variety of abilities. Fast-paced style. Large number of classes. "Realistic" western style. Offered solo and group content that would get players to max level. Meaningful complex crafting.

    2004 - World of Warcraft: Built on the foundations of the RTS series scavenging lore where it could and piecing it together (the first two games were notoriously light on cohesion) in order to make something of a world. Took the genre and even mainstream by storm. Fast-paced. "Cartoon" western style. Offered solo and group content that would get players to max level. Meaningful simple crafting.

    2005 - GuildWars: F2P is here with a vengeance! While covered by box copy sales, the game breaks from the sub model and proves that the latest gen has some interesting new economic possibilities. (Game was made to "end", thus making people not want to log in until an expansion was sold to them.)

    2007 - Lord of the Rings Online: Bigtime license means moderate to good success for Turbine. Capitalizing on DX10 the game looks good and has perhaps the mother of all IP's lorewise behind it. The important things here are the looks and the lore, though the gameplay is also solid and intertwined with the lore . . . which is actually fairly low-magic. (Not a lot of Gandalfs in Tolkien's world, actually!)

    2008 - Age of Conan: Bait-and-switch harms the beautiful game with a rich lore. Proves that LotRO's success is not so easy to duplicate, and that consistency is a key aspect of gaming.

    2008 - Warhammer Online: RvR gaming from Mythic again which does seem to suffer from lack of a third R. Innovative Book of Knowledge. Looking good and having awesome lore fall down when performance issues crop up.

    2009 - Aion: NCSoft proves again that they are the company bringing you the grind incarnate. Innovative flight system. Great game if you can abide the grind.

    2010 - Final Fantasy XIV: ?

    ***

    Now, I would contend that EQ in specific and the other first gen titles influenced FFXI heavily. NCSoft is truly the king of grind games, and those Asian developers aping the Korean giant are guilty of propagating the myth that ALL Asian games are a grind. Put simply: western games had grind and still in many cases have grind . . . it's part of the MMO genre.

    If we look at the titles that were influenced by WESTERN MMO's, it seems to follow suit that FFXIV will:

    1) Have a reliance on a kind of quest-based system for at least a portion of the "fighting experience" . . .

    2) Have a solid visual style that is considered "good looking" at least based upon the aesthetic prejudices of the beholder.

    3) Will offer solo and group content sufficient to reach max level.

    4) Will have a player economy and crafting that are meaningful.

    5) Will strive to eliminate performance issues.

    6) Will strive to minimize "pure grind" . . .

    ***

    In essence, what I see as the true heritage of the FF MMO is NOT NCSoft's version of the MMO, but Sony's . . . which is a western one, despite being owned by a Japanese company, Verant/989 was a San Diego Studio, and is as SOE to this day. (Go local boys! )

    Longwinded way to say I think you're misjudging the reasons that a 2002 MMO was grindy. Had to do with the 1st gen of western MMOs and Square/Enix trying to reproduce/innovate on Sony's model.
    Inactive Legion Soldiers:
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by WiGgLr View Post
    Aion's grind wasn't too bad compared to some of the older Korean MMOs (Lineage 2), or even compared to some western ones (Vanguard).
    Aion did prove that NCSoft hasn't changed all that much in their philosophy for in-house MMO development though. It shows they are loyal to their Korean roots. Nothing wrong with that: just means that you really will end up grinding.

    IF L3 ever comes out I expect a lot of grinding. (And Castle Sieges.)

    Vanguard's gameplay was a throwback to Gen 1 of the western MMO. With some refinements garnered from the second and third gens.

    What I am wondering is what we'll look back on as the beginning of the fourth gen . . .
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  9. #9
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    Can I be Cloud?

    also (UO)

    Typically only a very few actions need be undertaken by a character in order to fight.
    No.

    Need to see a bit more on this. Massively seem to be sucking as much of its dick as they can fit into thier shill mouth(s) though.
    Need new Mero quote for sig

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Taylor View Post
    Can I be Cloud?
    You might get Clouwd if you pre-order CE and are really really fast,

    And re: UO . . . no, and yes. Really depended on your skillset. We're both right in a way, as it could be complicated to fight or very simple. Point was merely showing the kind of evolution that occurred.

    Hard to tell which media outlets are reliable at this point, huh?
    Inactive Legion Soldiers:
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