What's up with Final Fantasy XI?

What do people like or dislike about it? I’m looking for a back up MMO to WoW so I want to get some input. I’m currently trying CoV and EVE. Thanks for any info!

Lorini

Pure, tedious, soul-crushing grind. Almost required grouping at a very early level. Lots of smacktards.

Thanks for making this thread.

So here’s the thing about FFXI: It’s all about achievement. It doesn’t half-ass it like WoW does, and give you oh here you can solo if you want, oh here do some little quest, oh look how neat our combat is, etc. It’s all achievement.

But it has the best achievement curve ever devised by man. There’s always some not-that-far-away-really goal for you to strive towards, and there’s lots of seemingly-insignificant-but-socially-mandatory equipment upgrades in between to keep you busy.

Everything is totally strict. The party combat is really tight; no loosey-goosey-WoW-style “oh five shamans? OH OKAY!” parties here, brother. There are maybe three acceptable party builds, and that’s it. They’ve recently made the game more solo/duo friendly, but don’t get the wrong idea; it’s still a whole lot less solo/duo friendly than WoW. And as for those wishy-washy classes you might be used to, you can throw those right out. Paladins that deal damage? Ha!

And it’s not quest oriented, really. I mean, you do some quests to raise your rank in a given country, and to get certain rare equipment, but the bulk of the levelling in the game is done by sheer combat: form a party, find a place to camp, have someone pull something over, kill it, rinse, repeat ad infinitum.

I bet this game sounds pretty awful so far. Well, it isn’t. It’s actually great. The strict party setup makes the combat much more exhilerating when everyone is doing they’re job and combat is flowing nicely. And the advancement… the rush you get when you can finally learn that new spell or ride your first chocobo or complete your AF… man, it’s great.

I can’t recommend FFXI strongly enough, if you like the achievement aspect of MMO’s. For everything else, there’s Guild Wars.

BTW, feel free to ask me any specific questions you have, and if you do play, let me know and I’ll get you a World Pass to Odin.

Then I guess Diablo II was created by aliens or something. :P

Then I guess Diablo II was created by aliens or something. :P[/quote]

Heh… not even close.

No F-ing US servers.

Thats a huge one right there. Also S-E are cheap ass bastards.

1 char per account? WTF

Deleting your chars after like 3 months of being inactive? Thats a great way to get people to come back dumbasses.

The play online interface is garbage.

If they wouldnt have been such cheap bastards and set up US servers so that we didnt have to deal with the people that have been playing for a year and are already max level it would be a different game.

EDIT oh yeah and worldpasses? What the fuck is that shit? SE is pretty retarded IMHO.

I did really enjoy the world events and conquest aspect of FFXI. Unlike WoW you get a sense that all of your battles, questing, and exploration play into some grander scheme than mere personal achievement. The three main kingdoms are in a constant struggle for territory, and it can feel very rewarding when your kingdom is in the top spot for the week. (I can’t recall exactly what bonuses are offered as tribute though)

On the flipside, I burned out very quick. There wasn’t much offered in the game to make your character stand out from the masses. The job system is flexible, but new equipment is doled out in a very strict fashion. (Copper gear->Iron gear->Steel gear-> etc…) Not much room for personalized looks, the loot range just isn’t there unlike a WoW or Diablo. I assume this comes at the cost of being a PS2 game and not having the memory to store such a variety of art assets though.

The world is somewhat interesting, and the game has an overarching plot that is -slowly- uncovered as you reach level plateaus and accomplish the major quests. The area environments can be visually arresting at times, but are also quite barren and lifeless.

extarbags is right that combat is addicting when you can break through all the social barriers of actually finding a good group. The team dynamic is great, when everyone understands their role and communicate efficiently to pull out crazy combo attacks and stuff. It can be a real slog trying to get that up and running though.

I’ve not played the game for nearly 2 years, so some of my complaints can possibly be outdated, the game has its moments, but ultimately it can also be real dry and slow.

Then I guess Diablo II was created by aliens or something. :P[/quote]

Heh… not even close.[/quote]
Smurfs?

Doesn’t cause any problems though.

1 char per account? WTF

It only costs an extra $1/month per extra character, and you’re overlooking a huge mitigating factor here: a character can play all of the classes. So why would you even have more than one?

Deleting your chars after like 3 months of being inactive? Thats a great way to get people to come back dumbasses.

They changed that to a year.

The play online interface is garbage.

That’s true.

If they wouldnt have been such cheap bastards and set up US servers so that we didnt have to deal with the people that have been playing for a year and are already max level it would be a different game.

What are you talking about, “deal with the people that have been playing for a year and are already max level?” You don’t deal with level 75 characters until you get to that level. They don’t get in your way. Anyway, the games been out long enough now that there are plenty of max-level US players, so this “problem” has nothing to do with where the servers are located. It also happens to be true of every MMO there is, afaik.

EDIT oh yeah and worldpasses? What the fuck is that shit? SE is pretty retarded IMHO.

HURR HURRR yeah pretty retarded I’d so much rather wait forty-five minutes to connect to a WoW server because Blizzard didn’t bother building in any population control. Never had to queue for FFXI, not even once, and I’ve never heard of anyone who has. That’s how retarded SE is.

Edit: Just to provide a reference point, it takes less time to save up the gil to buy a world pass in FFXI than it does to even log in to a crowded WoW server.

That’s true, and I meant to touch on this: it really can take a while to get a good party going, and because it’s not usually good enough to have, say, just five members instead of six, you run into problems replacing people when they leave, etc. It’s worth dealing with, in my view, but the best way to play FFXI is with friends, or at least linkshell (kind of like a guild) members, who will be reliable for partying.

My brother levels his main job (Red Mage) exclusively at LAN parties, and it works out smashingly for them all.

And actually, I should note that more alternative party builds are surfacing. I just read a post on an FFXI forum about someone who successfully ran a four-man party (two samurai, two ninjas) and was very successful, albeit at a low level. So there’s that. Also, a really popular party right now is five black mages and a bard, which someone figured out works as well or better than a standard party if everyone does it right.

So it’s looser now on the party front than it was a year or two ago.

Has there been or will there ever be a trial to try out FF11? That’s been the only thing keeping me from trying it, I don’t feel like spending money on a mmo without even trying it out first.

You get a free month when you buy it ($30), and you also get a buddy pass when you buy it that gives someone else a free week or month or something. I still have mine, in fact, so that’s out there on the table, though I can’t really lend you my copy of the game from here.

Also, if you cancel your account and decide you want to resub, you need to buy another copy of the game.

No, really.

Only if you leave it cancelled for over a year. Still sucks, but yeah. Also it’s not really a strike against the game itself.

I seem to remember SquareEnix not allowing you to reuse a CD-Key once it’s in their system. So, if you burn out and cancel your account, and they delete it from their system (after a year now, I guess), and you want to reinstall and play again, you have to buy a new copy of the game with a new CD-Key, because you can’t reuse your old one. That’s how it worked back in the day when I played it, a couple years ago.

I pretty much ended up hating the game because it’s about as hardcore an experience as it gets - you really can’t just screw around and wander and experience different things, because the core of the game is to find the optimal party and grindkill over and over and over again. I had a regular party of friends I played with for a little bit, until due to things with work and family and what-have-you, I missed like 3 days worth of logging in and gaming. In that time period, they had outleveled me by a bit, so it wasn’t worth it for us to group anymore. Instead, I had to resort to finding pickup groups, who of course looked for the strictly optimal set of character classes and actions in every combat, which ended up taking hours just to fill out a party, only to end up disbanding after a couple battles or something.

Plus, there’s the endless quests just for shit that should be basic - like finding the quest givers to give you the quest to become non-basic classes, or a quest to get a chocobo license, which you can’t use until level 20 anyway.

I dunno, I’m sure under the right circumstances it could be a blast, but my experience playing FFXI over a span of 3 months was excruciating. The whole thing just felt like work instead of fun.

FFXI is fun if you find the right people to party with. Once you find a group of people that gel well, everything runs extremely smoothly.

I’m happy to see that people are loosening up on party dynamics as of late with less folks saying this or that is the “right” party make-up. However, my one irk with FFXI is that for many the game is too much of a race to the top level. There’s some who will just sit in Jeuno all day everyday for a week trying to get a full party together to go level up, and can never quite get it done. They could just as well make a party of 4 or 5, sub WHM to heal, and just fight Ts and still get experience. The alternative is to sit and Jeuno and earn 0XP, then bitch about it. Too often certain people will gamble on finding a full party in Jeuno, but ultimately get nothing done. :(

As I said, they’ve made it somewhat more solo/duo friendly. A lot still depends on your class, but there are definitely more viable solo options now.

Also, it’s a lot more open to casual play these days, thanks to an item they added that gives you 50% more experience up to 1000 once every sixteen hours. It’s coded such that you can basically store two uses of it, so the long and short of it is that it compensates pretty nicely for not being able to play all the damned time.

Edit to respond to Mr. Nash: That item also helps with non-full parties. It’s still not ideal, but there is definitely more slack in the game now, though not enough to detract from its charming, chiseled-in-stone party roles.

Doesn’t cause any problems though.

Actually it does. Having the servers located in Japan cause a few problems and most of them related to Mob spawns and lag. The Asian players can see the named mobs before us and they can get the jump on them before we even see them. It happened to me more then a few times.

It only costs an extra $1/month per extra character, and you’re overlooking a huge mitigating factor here: a character can play all of the classes. So why would you even have more than one?

Its more the point of it. Its not like these chars take up this huge ammount of disk space. Also I know one char can play all classes but what if you want to try another server? Pay the buck. Its a pretty stupid system really. Most people in WoW have chars spread across a few servers and it woulda been nice if you could do the same in FFXI .

They changed that to a year.

Thats good.

What are you talking about, “deal with the people that have been playing for a year and are already max level?” You don’t deal with level 75 characters until you get to that level. They don’t get in your way. Anyway, the games been out long enough now that there are plenty of max-level US players, so this “problem” has nothing to do with where the servers are located. It also happens to be true of every MMO there is, afaik.

Here is the problem. You have level 70s in FFXI that have been there for a year and know all the ins and outs and are going through rolling over all the low end content to get crystals kinda fucking over the new people just starting.

Starting a game fresh is fun and there is a bit of a thrill to seeing new stuff come out. When you started FFXI the AH’s had already been loaded with stuff from the past year they found. You dont get any chance of discovery because its already been done.

Yes this can be said about any MMO but it happens much later.

HURR HURRR yeah pretty retarded I’d so much rather wait forty-five minutes to connect to a WoW server because Blizzard didn’t bother building in any population control. Never had to queue for FFXI, not even once, and I’ve never heard of anyone who has. That’s how retarded SE is.

Whatever dude the servers had been up for a year and last I checked WoW doesnt have any of those problems any more and its been year for them as well. Sure it was somewhat easy to get the passes but imagine trying to do that for your guild of 20 people… its very frustrating. Its also a very stupid system.

Edit: Just to provide a reference point, it takes less time to save up the gil to buy a world pass in FFXI than it does to even log in to a crowded WoW server.

I havent seen the que in 4 months and sure its easy for a level 10 player to get the gil but at level 1 its a bitch.

Yeah, I used to hear this excuse for not being able to pull NM’s fast enough bandied about. It’s nonsense.

[quote]It only costs an extra $1/month per extra character, and you’re overlooking a huge mitigating factor here: a character can play all of the classes. So why would you even have more than one?

Its more the point of it. Its not like these chars take up this huge ammount of disk space. Also I know one char can play all classes but what if you want to try another server? Pay the buck. Its a pretty stupid system really. Most people in WoW have chars spread across a few servers and it woulda been nice if you could do the same in FFXI .[/quote]

Isn’t FFXI $2/month cheaper than WoW? There you go; characters on three servers for the same price.

Here is the problem. You have level 70s in FFXI that have been there for a year and know all the ins and outs and are going through rolling over all the low end content to get crystals kinda fucking over the new people just starting.

Oh, do you? Sorry, my bad, I guess I’ll just take your word for it instead of going by the actual game experience I’ve had over the past three weeks.

Starting a game fresh is fun and there is a bit of a thrill to seeing new stuff come out. When you started FFXI the AH’s had already been loaded with stuff from the past year they found. You dont get any chance of discovery because its already been done.

Wait, so now you’re trashing FFXI because… you don’t get to start the game now and be the first person ever to get certain items? Give me a break.

Yes this can be said about any MMO but it happens much later.

Hey, here you go: I don’t care. I think the OP was asking whether he should check out FFXI now, not whether he should build a time machine and go back and check it out two years ago.

Whatever dude the servers had been up for a year and last I checked WoW doesnt have any of those problems any more and its been year for them as well.

That’s great. I’m glad they’ve got that sorted out. How do they make sure none of the servers are too crowded or too empty?

Sure it was somewhat easy to get the passes but imagine trying to do that for your guild of 20 people… its very frustrating. Its also a very stupid system.

Well, a world pass is good for five uses, so you’d have to buy… four of them. Even if nobody else in your guild would contribute (why would you move 20 people to your server instead of just going to theirs?), it wouldn’t take that long or be that hard.

I havent seen the que in 4 months and sure its easy for a level 10 player to get the gil but at level 1 its a bitch.

Actually, it’s arguably easier at level one, because, although it takes longer, you don’t have to go out of your way to rack up the money, because you’ll be doing it while you’re levelling. And it would take, by the way, three or four hours of levelling at most to be able to afford a World Pass.

How far did you get into FFXI, btw?