FFXIV Early Beta Impressions

FFXIV Keen Graev Beta

Now is as good a time as any to share some of my FFXIV impressions.  I’ve been playing in the beta weekend events for three weeks now as a Conjuror alongside Graev who is playing as an Archer.  I’m in love with the conjuror class and the idea of being a White Mage later on.  Graev hasn’t been too impressed by the Archer, so he plans to switch to the Lancer and ultimately become a Dragoon in Open Beta.

Likes

  • Open world (other than dungeons)
  • Combat takes a little more time than usual
  • Environments are pretty
  • UI is nice on PC
  • Class / Job system
FFXIV Beta Lalafell
Our adorable Lalafell striking a pose.

I love how I have already felt lost.  I was trying to find out where a quest wanted me to go, and it took me several minutes to get myself oriented with the map.  Not that finding quests is hard once you figure things out, it’s just slightly more effort that I can personally appreciate.  Navigating the world has been a lot of fun so far.  I’m loving the terrain and environments, and so far the game runs beautifully on my 3.5 year old PC.

The UI is waaaay better than it was back at the original launch.  While still a hotkey system with the typical inventory and character sheet, it looks nice and functions adequately.  Visually, I think it matches.

The class and job systems are going to add a lot of time to the game.  If you want to be a White Mage you’re going to have to level multiple classes — same for every Job.  To me, this presents plenty of opportunity to *hopefully* make it past the 3 monther mark.

In general, FFXIV just feels slightly more… traditional, might be the word.  There’s a touch of difficulty, a slower pace, an appreciation for the (again) tradition that makes these games enjoyable for me.  FFXIV sits right between themepark and psuedo-sandbox, and its suits the games well. (more…)

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Picking a Class

Graev and I are playing in the Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn beta.  We’re not even close to a point where we can share our thoughts on the game.  MMOs are a tricky beast, especially when you go as long as I have without playing one; they have a way of being really fun early on, then quickly turning 180 degrees on me.  Playing has reminded me of a topic unrelated to FFXIV: Picking what class to play.

I like the conjuror class.  Conjurors are a caster that can combine with another class and become a White Mage.  Something about the healing in FFXIV feels really good to me.  FFXIV has this old school grouping vibe to it that makes me feel really needed and appreciated as a healer.  I can tell I’m going to really like being a support role.

Okay, so much for waiting to talk about FFXIV.  Now the real point I was trying to make. (more…)

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Guacamelee!

I love guacamole and have a passing interest in melees, but I initially wrote this game off as just another bizarre downloadable title with a wacky setting/theme. I was actually…

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Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance Impressions

Originally I wasn’t sure whether or not I would be getting this game or not. I may not be a super fan of MGS games, but I do enjoy them. However this being a hack n slash game caused me some concern. Oh, and by HnS I mean games like DMC, Ninja Gaiden, God of War and not games like Diablo, BG:DA, older Pc titles, etc. I know, weird right? Not sure why these schmucks re-purposed the genre name, but that’s a horse of a different color. So anyway, I haven’t been too fond of the genre in the past. Ninja Gaiden was really difficult for me, even on easy. I tried one DMC game, 3 I think, but I was so bad that I kept unlocking easier difficulties. Eventually I gave up rather than continually being insulted. Ever since then I’ve avoided the genre, aside from the God of War series which I actually have beaten on the top difficulty. However I don’t think those games are too hard and don’t require nearly the reflexes needed for some of these harder HnS games. A few years ago I came to the sad realization that I lacked the speed and reflexes for these games, along with fighting games. I love them, but I can’t ever win against real people.

Metal Gea Rising Revengeance
Hack and Slash… quite literally

I seem to have drifted off on a tangent… Basically I did a lot of deep thinking and decided that after all this time I should just give it a try. The game looked to appealing to pass up. So far I’ve put several hours into the game but I’m actually had quite a positive experience.

The game takes place some time after Metal Gear Solid 4. I couldn’t really tell you much else because despite having played through the series multiple times I can never seem to remember much of the convolued storyline. In the game you play as Raiden in all his badass cyber ninja glory. Say what you want about the guy, but I’d like to see snake leap frog missiles and cut a helicopter in half. It’s not a MGS game, though, so don’t go in expecting a stealth espionage game. It’s essentially a cyborg ninja spinoff.

Read the rest of my impressions after the break. (more…)

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