Review by NDNIN

"Its the game that never ends."

When I got this game on its release back in October I had never even touch an mmorpg. Now on the 8th month of playing I have now believe I know enough about the game to write a solid review. I hope this helps you in choosing weather or not you buy this game.

Game play 9.8/10

This is where the game shines! The game at first is very overwhelming. You start by picking a race for your character. Name him or her, finally picking a job for them. Don't worry though! You can change your job at anytime in this game. You will get to start off in 1 of 3 cites of your choice. Sand'oria a medieval style city with Walls all around you, markets set up on the street. Bastok, which consists of a very industrial style setting. Windurst is a place for nature lovers it is very green with waterfalls and lakes through out the whole city. You will then be allowed to play this game at your own pace. You can start leveling, or start quests to make some gil (the FFXI currency). Leveling is the main focus of this game. For each level you go up the EXP you need to go up to your next level then increases. So throughout the game leveling gets harder and harder. The more you level however the more you can explore the ever growing world. However starting at around level 12 you will be required to party with other people, its part of the game. If you don't like playing with others this is not a game for you. The only down fall in the game play is the economy. The game is set up in a way that it makes it very hard for new players to make any money and for higher level players to get a lot. Even if you get board with leveling there are trade skills to you can raise! You can fish or smith. Even garden for a ton of money! You can choose how you want to play. There is no set time in which you must do something. You can take it easy and raise up a skill like fishing, or power level your self to 70s. There is so much more to this game though that I can't simply write down here. Just trust me you will be an addict.

Graphics 8.7/10

These are simply great graphics for an mmorpg. The only reason I give it an 8.7/10 are because of games like Doom 3 and Half-life 2 that simply blow this game out of the water in terms of graphics. Though you will be amazed if you have the proper hardware. You will see all types of whether effects. Grass will blow in the wind. And as you get higher in levels your choices of armor become abundant, each piece of armor looks just as good as the last.

Music/Sound 8.7/10

Sound is nothing special. Good sounds for spells and clunky noises when you have armor on. The Music is what really makes this game come alive! All the starting cites have great music in them and there surrounding areas have great scores too. The best of which is the Jeuno city music! That will be stuck in your head for days. The only downfall is there are so many areas in the game that music does not cover all of them.

Story 6.6/10

Don't get this game for the story. While some may tell you that this game doesn't have one, it does. Though to progress the story you must keep getting higher in levels. Which causes the story to go very slow. I have found my self losing track of what is going on half the time. Unlike most Final fantasy's don't expect much from the story here.

Controls 8.9/10

I love the keyboard controls for this game. They world wonders! However if you start hooking up controllers you will get less out of it. Also the controls and commands to do with the keyboard will take many hours to get used too. In the long run you will be very happy with the controls though. Moreover don't expect to be using your mouse much if ever.

Final Score 8.6

If you have time to seriously devote to a video game this is the one I would recommend. It is very well done and there is so much to do it is impossible to finish the game. There is even a future expansion coming this fall! So I see no end to this game in site. Its addicting nature is a downfall. If you do wish to have a very good time, for a long time pick up FFXI. Happy gaming!

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 06/25/04

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