A Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn Trial Look.
So this is a Video that runs 1 hour long. If you don’t want to watch the entire video don’t worry! I will be writing down below the video about some of my experience. This post is kind of out when I would have posted this (December Final Fantasy Week) Mostly due to the fact we have a review on it by Kamoe, it’s a good read and I suggest you check it out [Here]. This trial run was two fold for me. The first was really to see if my computer could play it and while my computer has frame rate issues graphically it looks fine I haven’t noticed any major graphical glitches or anything that really bothers me. It’s a Final Fantasy game so graphically it can look stunning and at least in the cinematic bits that beauty shines through. The second of course is actually the trial and the video is an hour long (first hour). Normally I do 30-40 minutes of video per first look but this trial has a lot of cut-scenes both in video format and in game graphical format. More on that down below.
So I mentioned the graphics, which isn’t surprising considering it’s a SquareEnix Final Fantasy game the next biggest thing I noticed is there is no voice acting in the main game. It’s quite strange here but I think it has to do with the obvious amounts of text but even more so on the fact how many strange words that would need to be pronounced and then that pronunciation would have to be continued through out voice casting which can be a long process, cutting out that voice acting issue (no voice acting) saved them months of work. Remember this game is a revamped version of the original game.
As with controls the game is optimized to be played with keyboard & mouse as well as a controller. Though of course I’m playing with a keyboard & mouse and I have no real issues to note. The biggest thing I noticed that this game does play better if you use hotkeys and not mouse clicking when battling (but that’s a given).
I will say I had some nitpicks that aren’t shown in the video and it has to do with the naming of creatures. Naming a Human something other than Human doesn’t make it yours nor does it make it cool it makes it dumb. If you have a creature that is for all intensive purposes the same as it is in this world then call it what it is commonly known, or you can not and be a try hard. While this nitpick seems small it is a common problem in the realm of Fantasy and not just games but writing in general. I have no issues with the cat-fox people or the giant ogre/troll like people’s names The are different enough that having a new name is fine. But as for Humans (Hyur), Elf (Elezen) and Halfling (Lalafell) just call them what they are. The worst is the Lalafell to me because not even in the second sentence (like I thought) but rather in the first sentence but after the second comma is this: “the Lalafell appear as no more than children to the eyes of most.” This. This quote right there is an indirect quote by Gandalf the Grey from Lord of the Rings about Hobbits which are Halflings. It’s a nitpick and a down right pointless one but for me it is annoying and the sign of a novice writer which is ironic because its coming from SquareEnix. But then again writing isn’t there strong suit and hasn’t been since they merged.
The biggest annoyance for me in this game is it’s beginning to be honest its so much attempted story building about a world I don’t care. The fact is that it’s so ham-fisted at first and is again a novice mistake I expect better from SquareEnix. I’m playing an MMORPG so I already know there’s going to be a lot of reading and that’s not so much the issue but instead of putting me into action (relatively) right away the first hour is mostly cut scenes and watching action but not being able to join in. This isn’t a good way to get me to care about the world or interested in playing. But what If I was a new person to Final Fantasy? Well I couldn’t care less even then because half of the stuff I or anyone has to deal with is more a show of fan service. It could have easily been cut down considering your character isn’t a baby and half of the stuff going on anyone would know… It would have been easier to show the mechanics and getting use to the game with bits of the info you already should know (but you as the player wouldn’t).
A great comparison would be the beginning of this game and the beginning of the game Mount & Blade: Warband (and most likely the original Mount & Blade). Both have you traveling to a new land, the difference being Mount & Blade’s character creation has you explain your reason for going to this new land (this provides your individual back-story and your starting equipment/stats) and then proceeds to give a single page explanation of your journey and that you arrived and then you are immediately thrust into a battle scenario against a single opponent and you stumble around trying to defend yourself. Then comes the why that happen (the story) the game hooks you immediately with an action tutorial and then story as to explain the going on’s and why you were involved. Where as with FFXIV you’re giving exposition, commentary and even spectation on a fight and then more exposition it holds no weight the whole time the game is showing you what you will one day get into and have to deal with and if it was just 15 minutes and not almost 40 I’d be less irritated. As with the fight its not super long but your character stands up and looks like they want to join in and had it been any other kind of Final Fantasy (past games) you probably would have but not here.
When I finally got to running around and fighting things was it fun? Actually yes it was enjoyable by the by it’s completely standard MMORPG fare but it was and is a lot better than cutscene after cutscene. I am only about 5 hours in and I’m dealing with traditional MMORPG quests of fetching things literally 2 feet away or fighting monsters that no adventurer or hero even at level one should be dealing with but still. Is it worth the wait that one has to go through? Not really but in this games defense I feel as if any was there a series that might have greatness come upon the player it would the Final Fantasy Series boss battles and other content that is locked due to trial will definitely make this game enjoyable. As of late their games have not been that great with story and while people who are blind fans can and will say they are great or even better than the past, sadly they are not. But this game does have the graphics, does have the sound quality that is expected as well, and is fun in the typical mmo style.
So would I recommend this game? Well if you are into mmo’s/rpg’s/or the Final Fantasy Series I say yes completely give this game a fair try this game out but warning you will need to play more than five hours to really tell if it’s something worth your time. This isn’t surprising as it is an mmo… Fortunately the trial is a free 14 days or until you hit level 20 and by then you can tell if you want to get this game. As for me I’m only level 7 and I have more hours to fiddle around with but I will probably be giving this game a go it does make me feel its like FF12 which is better than making me think of one of the games I hate. Anyways thanks for watching/reading and checking out this website!
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