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Reader Comments (8)

Posted: Feb 18th 2012 4:58PM (Unverified) said

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That's the thing... I look back to my XI days with fondness because of the group requirement. It created a lot more with that "stick", than you give it credit for. It forcibly created "community". It made it so you needed to be somewhat of a decent human being and to make friends in the game so you could continue to play it.

These days, most MMOs have become glorified lobbies. We sit in Stormwind or the like and queue up or wait for a raid, or play the AH or just plain AFK. We do not have a whole lot to do. We do not have the option to just group up with random people/friends and go out and adventure. We need to get that back in MMOs. These are the reasons most of the XI community and even some of those WoW players who never played XI, had such high hopes for XIV. Unfortunately, the games core design has such huge flaws, that I still do not think their proposed changes can fix all that is wrong. (I believe that they are just trying to "save face" at this point.)

In the end, XI's diverse "end game" gameplay and grouping was what kept us playing. No game created since has had either one.

I would love to read a column comparing what XI considered to be its "end game" with the likes of other newer games in the genre. Especially as they move to make the former level 75 activities such as Nyzul and Limbus relevant at 99.

Posted: Feb 18th 2012 5:24PM Khalus said

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@(Unverified)
"That's the thing... I look back to my XI days with fondness because of the group requirement. It created a lot more with that "stick", than you give it credit for. It forcibly created "community". It made it so you needed to be somewhat of a decent human being and to make friends in the game so you could continue to play it."


^^^This 1,000,000%^^^

Community is the #1 key to what makes an MMO successful, without it, its just a smorgasbord of irate players, mouthing off in every fashion with hopes of getting recognized, but overall they're just ruining all aspects of said game!

I am looking forward to possibly returning to FFXIV once 2.0 testing begins later this year, and while I can't yet determine what'll become of Eorzea then ~ deep down inside me I still wish SE would've just remade FFXI in HD instead. So much potential still remained in Vana'diel but sadly they've ruined that game too with Abyssea and other ridiculous changes...le sigh
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Posted: Feb 18th 2012 6:23PM Fakeassname said

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funny, in regards to the "community" building elements you speak so fondly of, all I remember from my time in FFXI is sitting by the town gate of the fishing village while spamming LFM and/or getting spammed by random link shell invites from people desperate to build up a list of possible party members so that they wont have to sit by a town gate spamming LFM.

rewarding communal activities is one thing, inflicting them is another.
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Posted: Feb 19th 2012 7:24PM (Unverified) said

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@Fakeassname That was a definite possibility, but to be honest, if all you did was sit and spam for people in Selbina and didn't bother trying to make connections with people, then that was your loss.

The fact that the game encouraged and even forced you to try and make real connections with people is one of the lasting and wonderful things about XI. I have one friend that has been by my side in every game since FFXI. I have several others that have made the core of numerous guilds/linkshells/companies/legions/etc in games since we all left XI. The friends I made back in my XI playing days have gone on to become both real life friends and friends that I can count on.

Community in every game since XI has been lackluster at best. Sure you may find a "home" in a guild in WoW but honestly, if it werent for raiding, or even the old school pre-lfg tool days of dungeon crawling WoW would not be anything more than a LFG Lobby with less reason to make friends than in MW3 or TF2.

@Khalus I wish they had had a brain and made that FFXI-HD. A lot of people wish they had. Unfortunately, we are stuck with XIV and its lack of real potential. Its copy/pasted world, its lackluster "console driven" UI and gameplay. Hopefully we can get them to rethink things and give us a new Vana'diel with the PC/Mouse/Keyboard in mind and the "openness" of a 1 character, many jobs and no real (and balanced around) PvP. What the MMO world needs is a TripleA title that is based on Community/Grouping/More roles than just the trinity (bring back the buffer and the debuffer) and just plain good story/missions and PvE. (Hell when we played XI, "PvE" wasnt even coined yet, cause that is all there was, and we loved it.)
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Posted: Feb 25th 2012 9:26PM Oblyvion said

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@(Unverified) word up. the necessity for grouping is what got me hooked on XI in the first place. I remember my first exp party.. as a level 10 BLM at the mhaura outpost (lol). sure, there were a lot of complaints from ppl who'd seek all night and not get an invite.. but to those ppl I always said 'make your own parties', which is what I did more often than not, and loved it. I don't regret my decision to quit so I could resume my life, but I think fondly upon XI quite often.

as far is XIV is concerned.. well, I quit XI just before XIv came out, so I never played it. but still, I kinda ha the idea that SE would take what they learned from XI, and move forward from that, as well as dropping the PS2 shackles (grrr at 80 item inventory). but it seems that they put something out that seems kinda amateur. good thing I no longer play MMO haha.
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Posted: Feb 19th 2012 2:00PM (Unverified) said

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I love grp play in MMOs. It is the single biggest reason why I choose to play this genre.

While it was very difficult to progress in FFXI w/o a grp it just made the game that much better. That was the game, playing with other people.

Now MMOs are all about getting to max level to start your hunt for the "precious". Forget the journey, just play the end game and complain that there is nothing to do.

In FFXIV I like the fact that you don't need a full 8 member party to progress, that smaller parties are viable even if you choose to solo you can still see some significant progress TNL even in a short playtime. But a part of me misses the loyalty and respect party members gave eachother in FFXI.

Back in the day a single party would stick together for hours just grinding away, if someone had to leave they made every effort to find a replacement. Now people come and go as they please, but I guess thats why they made the journey so easy now, because you just can't count on people devoting time to strangers.

Posted: Feb 20th 2012 5:35PM sirroc said

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FFXI's greatest fault in the party system ultimately was also its downfall. I agree with all the comments of the complexity of XP'ing and grouping in XI. However, XI was plagued by the same problems modern MMOs are now. Which is class(job) bias.

When XI first started out you had a full party that consisted of a Tank, 2x Damage dealers 2-3x support, and a black mage or two. Some classes were interchangeable. When people were still doing skillchain>magic bursts I found parties to be far more fun and the grind a little less annoying. However, once ToAU came out; the party dynamic degraded much to the point it is today.

Ultimately for me, the game and modern MMOs have becoming playing a spreadsheet; and not a game. FFXI has hidden latent effects on items; some of which are still not fully known today. People argued for years over whether or not the 'Millionare's Desk" had a treasure hunter effect. And paid out the ASS on a hunch. The community had to practically beg SE to tell them how to beat Absolute Virtue.

I loved every second of it because after so many years after launch there were/are things that are still a mystery in the game. I wish more modern MMOs would continue such secrecy. There is such a thrill in NOT knowing every single aspect of the game.

Posted: Feb 25th 2012 9:45PM (Unverified) said

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@Oblyvion I too quit just before XIV came out. Well I did and I didn't. I left XI and tried to make myself believe that XIV had potential. I participated in the XIV alpha and beta and was stupid enough to convince myself that they simply weren't showing us everything so they could be their "Sneaky" selves. I mean after all I can still remember there are NMs in XI that people are still trying to figure out how to spawn. There was one Goblin that the recipe for the pop item literally took 2 years after his addition for someone to figure out how to make it. But alas.. XIV was and is, an unfinished and ill conceived game. They have big plans, but it is absolutely clear, that it was never designed to be the spiritual successor of XI's core ideals.

Grouping means very little in XIV, although its helpful. I just want a game that is "niche" again. One where story is important, where the end game is diverse, and where leveling up and grouping is part of that end game. Horizontal and Vertical progression paths just simply are not being done anymore and it is what the genre needs as a kick in its pants.
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