Four days ago I placed an Order with Amazon, yesterday these arrived in the post:
They were very dusty. I imagine somebody had to go into some sort of abandoned storage basement to retrieve them for me.
FFXIV is a bit of an unknown quantity by all accounts - The game has been marred by the poor standards it exhibited upon release in 2010, and to this date it is still considered to be in an incomplete state (although according to current players and bloggers, the content and quality is immeasurably better than it was at launch). Cut short the core problems included the lack of much of the content expected by players, as well as an unreliable engine which resulted in alot of graphical and latency issues, generally hampering gameplay.
However the game is also somewhat unique in how Square-Enix have gone about handling the problems it has suffered. Since the initial criticism they have completely restructured the development team and have been working not only on improving the current game state, but also on affecting a complete re-release under the title “Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn” (AKA FFXIV 2.0). They recently published a revamped gamesite to reflect the upcoming changes - you can find alot of info on what they have planned just by looking around on there, as well as their community Lodestone. Basically they have apparently reworked the entire game system, server structure and graphical engine to rectify the core problems, as well as adding a host of new content to satisfy disillusioned players.
Now, to how this interests me:
I have previously abstained from trying the game due to very reliable and numerous criticisms of its quality, but I am very very excited for FFXIV: ARR, and am trusting that SE will deliver on their promises. I am slightly concerned about the game losing some of the effort-is-rewarding and all-fights-are-challenging qualities of FFXI, but on the whole I am very hopeful and cant say id miss the endless LookingForGroup scenarios.
In a moment of unusual shrewdness I realised that if I bought the game now it would only cost me £7 per copy, I would get 30 days free playtime and I would not need to repurchase the game after the relaunch - when it will undoubtedly cost £30 to buy a product key. So I ordered it. The others are less sure on this, Haustgeirr especially, but they both went along with it based on the affordability of it at present.
Im not being totally mercenary or unfeeling on this either, I am actually genuinely hoping to get in a little playtime before the imminent revamp occurs. Square-Enix are running an in-game campaign of quests and events that explain the radical changes to the game world, and id actually like to see how they pull it off.
All being well I should start the game in the next week or so, and I plan to make some blogs and/or MH Play vids about it, to show people what the game is like now compared to how it will be post-ARR.
The major concern im facing right now is:
Should I play Hyur or Elezen?
I find the title of “Hyur Midlander” a little uninspiring (maybe because I am a Human and live in the West Midlands IRL?) but I also have a deep-seated aversion to playing big tall characters (maybe because I am short IRL?). Im trying not to worry too much about it, as apparently the relaunch will include a chance to respec existing characters to different appearances/races, so theres a possibility I might play male Miqo’te eventually anyway - I guess ill just play whichever I can customise to look best, as im pretty shallow about these things anyway!
At least I know I want to roll White Mage! :D