FFXIV Boo Hiss

I won’t post what everyone else in the beta has already posted. I’ll just say…Meh.

Oh, it’s very pretty. The intro sequences are gorgeous. And then it all falls apart.

  1. No quest givers? You mean I have to run around the city talking to literally everyone to find quests?
  2. I finally got quests. Supposedly they are easy to find on my map – she says she marked it on my map. Err…not that I can see. I have two places on my map, neither of which are the place I’m supposed to go.
  3. Let’s wander around. It’s supposed to be just outside the city. I’m a reasonably competent adventurer, surely I can find it. Lots of gullys.
  4. I can’t jump off small ledges. Neither can I jump up. The only way off the tiny hill that I’m on is way way back the way I came.
  5. The heck with it.

I watched P., an experienced gamer, die to some beginning-level fluffy mob because combat is so difficult to figure out. Or maybe it was an elite fluffy animal, no way to tell the difference. Anyway, it took him five minutes to figure out how to res. (Here’s a hint – buried in your menus is an option called “Return”. This is a revive.)

It’s really disappointing…the UI and combat are just shockingly bad, and as much as I would love to play for a while just for the sheer loveliness of it, the non-responsiveness of the combat and the difficulty that you have in doing every single thing makes it gamebreaking for me.

I cancelled my pre-order. :(

7 thoughts on “FFXIV Boo Hiss”

  1. Oh wow, that does sound bad. I was wanting to try it out but I got caught up with other things and beta for another game. Glad I didn’t bother!

  2. This is a horrible review. If you couldn’t figure out return, you are dumb. The maps TELL you where to go, so you wrong and dumb again (they give map markers). UI needs work – you have a pony there… But this is beta and SE says an incoming UI change for release is nigh. Oh btww, there is a con option, but again I guess you were too dumb to figure it out!

  3. Real shame, I would love to have MMO to play on PS3 (normally I play on laptop, so PS3 is my only route to big screen living room gaming:-) And now… bah, almost everyone agrees that UI is very clumsily designed, and there are unbelievably rude fanboys running around too…

  4. lol – I totally admit it’s not a review. Like anything I write, it’s a collection of miscellaneous thoughts and impressions kind of flung on the page during the odd free moment. It’s also (obviously) not guaranteed to piss off FF fanbois. :)

    But seriously, it kind of bugs me when people who play FF or the old Everquest or whatever think they’re somehow more hardcore by being able to play badly designed, grindy games. Yes, eventually in FFXIV you can find what you need in the menus. That doesn’t mean that it’s not a bad (and worse, un-fun) game. There are modern ways of treating usability that make games more pleasant to play.

    The combat is one of the worst things about the game, and that is not something they’re going to fix. Maybe it’s a consequence of having the legacy of being a turn-based game, I don’t know. But when I go out adventuring, I want to feel (as much as I can within the structure of a game) that I’m actually there swinging a sword or tossing a fireball or whatever. Even if they add hotkeys so you don’t have to do as much clicking -which I’m assuming they’ll have to- you still have a non-responsive combat style. “I think I hit it…nothing is happening. Oops, I de-targeted because I have to click on the ability. Try again. Did that work? No spell effect or anything to indicate that I hit it. Well, it eventually died, it looks like something happened.” Horrible.

    I loved EVE Online, which is admittedly a “hard” game with a steep learning curve. And you know what? That doesn’t bother me. If I was piloting a spaceship I would expect to be doing it via some pretty complex computer interfaces. But give me a big stick and have me find something to beat on? I just want to hit it.

  5. Ahh Jason, you’re EXACTLY the reason that bad games like this aren’t made better. FFXIV in its current state is a VERY bad game. If it didn’t have the Final Fantasy badge stuck on the front everyone would pass it off as another crappy asian grind fest.

    You say the maps tell you were to go – no – the quests (if you can find them) tell you where to go, the map just shows you random symbols with no correlation to your destination, not til you get close enough on the map anyway. With no zoom feature and only partial map showing – it’s gues work. Oh – the first quest from one city says ‘head north from the city and find location X’. Check the map – ahh yes, a path to the north… so you trek through the city, running and running and you get to the path and ‘boing!!’ – what’s this?? Oh – an invisible wall… an INVISIBLE WALL ffs… in a modern MMO in the middle of a city environment. No reason for it, and it appears at first to be your only path to your destination. 15 minutes of runnign up and down every single pathway in the north half of the city and you find a path spirally down in the opposite direction that once you invest some time in, turns out to lead you to your quest area. You get to kill THREE rats, the quest turns in on the spot (nice idea), but you then have to trek all the way back to the first guy in the city for another quest. So – 20-25 minutes of runnning, 3 plague rats kills – ooh – are we having fun yet?

    Another occasion – go out and kill marmots. Once you find them (no mean feat) and attack them, you realise you’ve got a fight on your hands. These tiny little marmots (with no indication as to how powerful they are) might die, or they might utterly trounce you, and you have no idea why the first one died after you waved your axe at it 30 times, and the 2nd one kicked your ass. You die, and your character falls to the ground, and the game goes on around you. What next? Normally in an MMO – you turn into a ghost, have an option to run to your corpse, or are ported back to a graveyard after a prompt. Not in FFXIV – you lie there, with no idea what to do. You look through your bags, your abilities, hmm, nothing. You try the main menu – hmm, configuration settings, open inventory, spellbook, return, teleport. Hmm.. return – that might be it – but wait – they use the word return on EVERY dialog box to acknowledge the fact you want to return to the game and out of dialog. Heck, try it – you’ve tried everything else – and oh wow, it works… and now you’ve got resurrection sickness. You’ve just started the game, you’re level one (probably, it’s hard to tell), and now you’re utterly gimped in combat for the next however long – cos the debuff doesn’t bother to tell you.

    This is not a hard game – hard games take patience to learn and skill to play. This is a bad game. It’s not hard to spam ‘1’ as your only combat move at this level, it’s a very badly designed and executed game. Sure – it looks pretty, but then so does Katie Price on a good day, but I certainly wouldn’t want to spend any time with her.

    I’ve been playing games since the ZX81, I’ve beta’d literally hundreds of games, from the PS2, PS3, Xbox, PC, every subscription based MMO in the last six years, and this is the absolutely FIRST one of them that I’ve completely written off as a pile of dross. I’ve given many betas a chance played them inspite of problems, hopeing they’ll transform at launch. This ‘game’ (tho it needs to be fun to be a game surely), is so utterly devoid of any kind of enjoyment, and is SO fundamentally flawed in every aspect of its execution that I can actually write it off as a no hoper. The sad thing is that the fanbois like Jason will pay their money for a very poor game and Square Enix will have no motivation to fix it.

  6. I swear that FFXIV is literally, the most unintuitive game that I have ever played. Well second I guess; FFXI may have been worse, don’t remember. It’s as if they took decades of interface design and just threw it out of the window. It’s functional, but it is ludicrously far from anything resembling optimal.

    The exact same thing happened to me: I died, and had to Google what to do. Normally, a game will present a dialogue box or something asking if you would like to resurrect. I guess just being a little user friendly is way too much to ask for. Everything is buried in a mess of menus…

  7. I bought this game. THe collector’s edition no less…and I figured, HEY I love Final Fantasy! I hated Final Fantasy XI, but maybe they fixed the horrible grind and interface problems. I was wrong.

    I spent all that money on this CRAPPY CRAPPY game!! Once I FINALLY got the multiple stupid “billing” accounts set up and got my ID, and FINALLY got the patch to download (I ended up having to torrent it MYSELF becuase their patch interface is so horrendous), I figured out that my really high end gaming rig, that runs every game out there (Crysis, maxed settings, 68 FPS), runs this game like it’s being run on a nintendo DS.

    This is hands down the BIGGEST waste of my hard earned money I have EVER spent, and because I DID install it and had to open the box to do so, I can’t return it to Gamespot.

    It’s a vomitous mass of faded brown clothes and crappy framerates, even on moderately reduced settings. Why do Asians think it is SO FUN to mindlessly kill the same TINY little fluffy overpowered creature for hours on end to get some stupid items that you have NO IDEA what to do with, because the interface lags so much you don’t care to dig around clicking on different NPCs to find out.

    The book tells you ZILCH. Nothing. Nada…on how to fully explore any crafting or how combat REALLY works…

    Why do I have to keep clicking and clicking on Blizzard and Flamebolt for them to cast? Why can’t I just push ONE stupid 2 or 3 key and it just casts onto my target like EVERY OTHER GAME OUT THERE!!!

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