Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Naoki Yoshida: Part XII and my thoughts on FFXIV's chaotic first year

See also: Letter from the Producer, XVIII (09/21/2011)
See also: Foundation Day Cometh! (09/16/2011)
See also: Caravan Security (09/15/2011) 
See also: Beastman Strongholds (09/12/2011)
See also: UI Adjustments (09/12/2011)
See also: Guildleve Revisions (09/09/2011) 
See also: Grand Companies of Eorzea Page Updated! (09/07/2011)

There is also supposed to be a new fight against Ifrit coming too, along with the new raids listed under Beastmen Strongholds.

In any case, this is the anniversary of a very rough year for Final Fantasy XIV. If you've been following the game, it was critically panned at the release and became somewhat of the laughing stock of the industry as far as MMOs are concerned. In a wide-spread company public relations move, last December they replaced the original producer (Hiromichi Tanaka) with Naoki Yoshida (Yoshi-P) who was the producer and director. His outgoing and unique personality (especially from Square-Enix who was notorious up until this development team revamp for ignoring players in favor of the development team's concerns) inspired me to do these write-ups. This whole series is the most viewed out of my blog entries, and personally I love writing up on the game and explaining what I'm looking forward to and seeing this game change and evolve as I'm playing it.

However, it is kind of unfortunate (as if you see my blogs from a year ago) that I was really hoping that this game would be a success from the start, and it might get its chance to have a decent playerbase, but it's a year later and the game still needs a good amount of improvement.

I find the game to still be impossible to recommend to friends, and some probably think I'm a little crazy for trying to stick with it after all of this, and I'm still fairly confident that this game will eventually turn out to be fun. Maybe I'm just a sucker for patience though, we'll see...

As for Naoki Yoshida, I have nothing but pure admiration for his charisma and work ethic towards improving the game. Most MMOs that launch in this same situation are abandoned like a sinking ghost ship and the developers try and brush it off and move on while leaving a skeleton crew to keep the game on life support. Yoshi keeps the players going and actually communicates changes that are coming, and takes time to read player suggestions and give feedback. Maybe I'm just not used to it after playing FFXI for the last decade where we were ignored and pretty much had to just deal with things, but I really wish he was in the XIV Development Team early on.

As always, I'm still looking forward to the changes and hope that one day I can actually recommend this game to friends to join and adventure with me in Eorzea. I say the game is leaps and bounds from what it was a year ago, and I wish it would have waited until now to be released. I'm willing to bet it would have gotten a far better score. But the problem with the game lies now that there are players of all levels that the new and upcoming changes has to cater to. Both level 50 endgame players like myself and the newbies and PS3 players that will be coming in the future. That will be hard for a struggling MMORPG that's hanging on and technically getting revamped from its core.

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