Review by tjewu

Reviewed: 12/09/04

Not for everyone, Only the die hards need apply

When I first heard of Final Fantasy MMORPG I could not wait for it to come out. I had already been playing EQ and quickly got bored at the repetitive nature of the game, but enjoyed it nonetheless. So, being a huge FF fan I figured that FFXI will hold my interest. With that said I will be basing my review on graphis, gameplay, controls, story, sound and overall entertainment (overall entertainment will compared to other MMORPG).

The graphics in FFXI are nothing short of spectacular as with all FF games, this one holds up with the rest of them. The game kind of gives a grainy feel to it which gives it a little bit of a vintage look, but has a deliberate presence to it. This is all coming from a PS2, I can only imagine how good the graphics on a PC would be (I don't have a good enough PC to run this game).. 10/10

The gameplay in FFXI follows a lot like other MMORPG where as you are a new adventurer who has to set out learn skills, gain money to buy new equipment, seek out special items and bring it back, and oh yeah lvl your character up. There are other things to do within the game like fish, synthesis items, mine, farm, sell items at the auction house, and get your chocobo license (sorry if I missed listing other things to do in the game). The great thing about the gameplay that I found to keep my interest more than other MMORPG that I have played is the ability to change the job of your character. For example, if you start off the game as a BLM and you find out later in the game that you do not like being a magic user, then you can easily go back to your moghouse and change to another job like a WAR or THF. You can also gain more jobs as you play through the game and do quests for certain people. Another great feature is the ability to have a subjob. What a subjob does is let you have a job underneath your main job where you can take part of the subjob stats and add it to your main along with some abilities. When you are in the main world running around the game flows pretty smooth unless you get into an area with a large group of people, then the game begins to bog down and lag. Something that does get frustrating is when you go in to town (Jueno in particular) the whole game begins to lag and chop up almost to the point of not wanting play, but if you do not stay in town very long it is not bad problem. This game has a lot of variety to it where you are not stuck doing one thing the whole and get bored of the game. The battle system is pretty standard to other MMORPG except for a couple of little tweaks: The first being that you get to have six members in a party (which could be frustrating to find six people sometimes), then they have the implemented a limit break system which closely resembles FFVII, but instead they call it TP and you can go up in increments of 100% all they way up to 300% and then you can unleash your fury and you can get different abilities that you can use with each different style of weapon you use. 9/10

The control to this game is pretty easy to get used to after you take the time to learn everything. To put it in simplest terms, it is like learning how to drive a stick shift in your car. It seems overwhelming at first but once you get the shifting down it becomes second nature to you and you can almost do it blind folded (personally I watch picture in picture now when I play cause I know the menu options so well). But from what people who play it on PC tell me, they geared the controls to the home console version rather then to the PC and they say there are some frustrating aspect to the controls on PC which is probably why it feels a lot easier on the home version. One nice part of the game is the macros system which is an easy way to do stuff w/o going through a ot of menus to do it. 9/10

As far as the story goes, I have not gone very deep into the story, but I do know that there is a rising in monsters in certain areas and you have to help to find out why. Now there is also a subplot within the main story, which is the land conquest. That is where you acquire a signet and kill monsters throughout the land and gain points for your particular kingdom. The best thing about FFXI and MMORPG is that you can actually beat the game, even though I have not done this yet I hope to do it someday. 8/10

Overall I think this game is great, I don't find myself getting bored very often. The only time being when I have to travel accross the land just to get to another town (where is a care when you need one). Trying to lvl your character is not nearly as bad as some other MMORPG (EQ) and you can do it in a reasonable amount of time where you feel like you made progress. Plus, being able to beat the game is a nice added feature. 9/10

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

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