Review by DarkEssance
"Here to set the record straight"
First Let me start by saying, that I'm not going to tell you what the games about, as you have many other reviews to do so. But I will brake down the aspects of this game with a bias opinion.
Good: not much to be said here. It's a truly great looking game with nice scenery and many areas to explore. For the most part, you'll never see a glitch in the graphics, and you can actually just stand there taking in the scenery.
Bad: Because of the graphics, when zoning to another area, there will be a 7 to 13 second load. Also when making a character, they don't look as good in the game(not a problem in first person though)
Good: As if it needed to be said, this games music is great, and the sound fx are a compliment. I've seen things that actually scared the crap out of me on first site(tremor rams), because when they walk by they make loud noises and shake the screen.
Bad: the music can get repetitive, and the footstep sounds can get annoying. Luckily you can take those sounds off though
The biggest thing to say here is, don't compare this game to others! You'll just end up messing up your own experience, that being said allow me to compare!
Good: Well theirs plenty to do in this game. Although in the very beginning you mite be lost as to what to accomplish first. Yes only unique to this game is the job class system, which wasn't confusing to me, but it might be to others. Playing something like WOW, people might just be tempted to create a new character to have a new job. No, that's wrong. Anyway, the game has plenty of cool quest and missions that can keep you busy, and it does have a story, especially when playing COP(chains of Promathia). The System of MACROS you can set is great. Macro's are pretty much hot keys that you can set up to do any in the game, besides walk. Which brings me to a big point! If you're playing on a console get a keyboard. You won't survive without one. A newly added chocobo raising system will have you occupied for a good while also. Taking it for walks, feeding it, making sure it's happy, increasing its status, and then mating it is a very great addition to the gameplay. The game progresses nicely, as when you reach certain levels, new things open up to you and are available for exploration. For example at lv 18, your aloud a sub job, and at level 30 and advanced job. People have criticized square for making it this way, but believe me working for those goals will have you feeling sooo good, when you finally get them. And makes it a lot easier.
Ehh: As far as Fighting goes, you've heard people say that Soloing is slow. And hell yes it is. After level 10, just join a party. The party system isn't bad at all, its pretty fun. Earlier in FFXI's life span, their were a lot of rude people, but don't let it turn you off to the game, getting parties now is pretty easy. The downside to this is that I you do feel like playing alone, getting experience is slow, and un eventful, seeing as how you wont be able to do skill chains, or be able to get exp chains. Getting in a party will require some waiting and could be very hard and time constraining. But its also very easy to put up your seek sign, and go and take care of other business while you wait. That said, your first time leveling to 30 will be hard, because your constantly moving to new areas, and constantly buying new gear, but after getting your first advanced job, you'll fly through levels like nothing, compared to your first time!
Bad: Being an MMORPG, interaction with other players can easily be dull. Unless you're in a LinkShell (kind of like a guild), you wont just start off making friends. Leveling up is very hard reaching a certain level, and sometimes getting money to pay for items and weapons are way harder than it should be. Monsters never drop good items, unless you fight an IT rare monster, but the chances of you getting and using that item are slim. Starting out, it will be very hard understanding the economy. There was a gil replication scandal on FFXI that inflated the economy and made everything super expensive, although its back to normal now. And last! THERE IS NO CUSTIMIZATION!! Creating a character takes no time, and wont leave you felling accomplished and proud. Instead you worry about all your twins you'll meet.
All in All:
Like I said before, don't look for this game to replace your WOW or EQ. but it is very different and fun for different reasons. The players have been dwindling in my server at least, but still plenty enough for everything that I have to do. I just remember when I started playing, there was so many people that you couldn't walk through a town without lag. plus every time an expansion hits, the world expands like crazy and all the old players flock back to the game. I know this review is late in the game, but I just wanted to let others know that this game still is very much worth a buy, and the playtime. The bad things about this game aren't so bothersome, the way people make it sound. Though I do get bored from time to time, and don't play for like a week because im tired of leveling up, but I always find a mission or something to do with my friends that keeps me occupied. So please play more than a week to get a true grip on the game before making judgments
Reviewer's Rating: 3.5 - Good
Originally Posted: 11/21/06
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