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Final Fantasy XIV Failed Due To Overly Detailed Flowerpots 195

Posted by timothy
from the discretion-is-the-better-part-of-computation dept.
_xeno_ (155264) writes "You might not remember Final Fantasy XIV, the Square Enix MMORPG that flopped so badly that Square Enix fired the original developers. But Square Enix certainly does, and at a recent GDC panel, producer Naoki Yoshida explained his views on what caused its failure. One reason? The focus on graphical quality over game play, leading to flower pots that required the same rendering power as player characters, but without the same focus on making the game fun to play. Along with severe server instability and a world made up of maze-like maps, he also cited the game being stuck in past, trying to stick with a formula that worked with Square Enix's first MMO, Final Fantasy XI, without looking at newer MMOs to see what had worked there."
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Final Fantasy XIV Failed Due To Overly Detailed Flowerpots

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  • by Yosho (135835) on Saturday March 22, 2014 @10:57PM (#46555305) Homepage

    Considering that FFXI was (and still is) wildly successful and FFXIII has been a series of disappointments, I'm not sure how well that would've worked out for them.

    (also, the game you're looking for is Bravely Default)

  • My comments on this (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Megane (129182) on Sunday March 23, 2014 @12:18AM (#46555629) Homepage

    Along with severe server instability and a world made up of maze-like maps,

    That's one little problem I have with the later maps in FFXI. While the original areas had nice big areas, most of the later expansion areas were what I call "outdoor dungeons". Pits connected by trench hallways, with the areas in between being up on 10 foot high cliffs. There are even some areas you wouldn't realize are outside except when you look up and see a tree canopy.

    Another problem XIV had was the degree to which sections of a map were copied and pasted. Sure, in FFXI you can see stuff like similar looking forks in the road, but in XIV, entire small hills were practically rubber-stamped all over a zone, without so much as even rotating them.

    he also cited the game being stuck in past, trying to stick with a formula that worked with Square Enix's first MMO, Final Fantasy XI, without looking at newer MMOs to see what had worked there."

    My own analogy of what happened is that they effectively had a list of "stuff that didn't work in FFXI and we need to fix when we don't have PS2 Limitations", and "stuff that works great in FFXI and we should keep". They used the first list, and threw out the second.

    Another problem I think XIV had was that someone had A Great Idea, which is always trouble. "Hey, guys! What if we made your class depend on the weapon you were using?" Which sounds like it could possibly be a pretty good idea. Except they apparently never bothered to actually play test it to make sure it worked well enough, or even tune it. Instead, all the preview demos were all about the uber graphics resolution. Of course, this being in Japan, anyone who might have pointed out that it wasn't such a great idea would have instinctively held back so as not to embarrass his superiors.

    Other radical ideas were thrown in, apparently from just trying to do something different without trying it, such as "People weren't 100% happy with the auction house in XI, so let's not have an auction house! We'll make people's characters stand around and bazaar their stuff even when they're not online!" Except that the number one problem with that is NO INDEXING. If you want, say, a cotton thread, you have to check every character's stuff individually, with no way to compare prices or even know who has what you want. Or at least that's what I understood the problem was from reading a bunch of forum posts from people in beta, because no way was I going to start another grindy MMO from the start, so I stayed with XI. (If I do go try other MMOs, I've sworn that it will be for exploration and seeing cool landscapes and maybe cool plot lines, not for grinding gear to help me grind more gear.)

  • by dicobalt (1536225) on Sunday March 23, 2014 @07:58AM (#46556617)
    I agree, but only because a MMO is a fucking career, while a RPG is just a game. I have no interest in a MMO.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 23, 2014 @10:15PM (#46560929)

    Javascript and Java aren't even related by name. That's just a very, very unfortunate coincidence.

Thus spake the master programmer: "After three days without programming, life becomes meaningless." -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"

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