Scattered, Continued

 I am officially all over the place this week. You probably won’t believe me when I tell you what game I re-installed yesterday. Ready? Are you sitting down?

Final Fantasy XIV.

 Now that you’re done laughing, let’s continue. If you’ve read my blog in the past you likely know that my very first MMO was FFXI. (Well, not counting the 3 Kingdoms MUD, I suppose.) I was all over the FFXIV hype-train like no other. I pretty much kept my head down regarding any news of the game during beta, however, because I wanted to pick it up and form my own opinion. I could have saved myself a lot of pain and grief by listening to the detractors – but even if I had listened, I know I would’ve still gone out and picked up the colletor’s edition anyway. I am an unabashed Final Fantasy fan.

 Needless to say, I quickly fell “out of love” with FFXIV. The UI was a clunky, laggy mess. There was no Auction House (still isn’t /sigh), and some of the game mechanics were really questionable – physical levels with attributes for a game that touts being a jack-of-all-trades? Odd call.

But credit to SE, (much like kudos to CCP for yesterday’s announcement) they stepped to the mic and said “we screwed up”. They’re still not charging for FFXIV. They’re still actively looking to improve it. Patch 1.19 dropped on Tuesday with a boatload of fixes (removing physical level being a huge one), so I’m giving it another look.

 There was some good and some bad. We’ll start with the bad.

 Seriously – get a new patcher. I again had to scour the Internet for the patch file because the updater would randomly crap out. That’s annoying. Fortunately, it wasn’t too hard to find and is easy to do.

 The good. I forgot how beautiful the game is. Even on the lowest settings, FFXIV is absolutely gorgeous. The character model detail, the cities, the landscapes, you name it. Breathtaking. I rolled up a new character to see what has changed and they’ve also added a tutorial. One that is specific to whether you are using a keyboard/mouse or gamepad/keyboard, even. Nice!

 I only played for about an hour, but I think I will leave it on my hard drive and visit periodically. I’m still waiting on a couple big items that are supposedly coming in future patches (and what reason not to believe them at this point? They’ve done a good job delivering fixes thus far) before I would go head-long into it maybe being my “last MMO home” as I declared over a year ago. But I’ll tell you what – they’re a lot closer to that becoming a reality now than they were at launch.

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~ by Drew on October 6, 2011.

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