Let me just start out by saying that I’ve never been a huge fan of the Final Fantasy franchise. I used to watch my brother and his friends play years ago, but I could never really get into it. However, a few days ago someone dear to me asked me to sign up to beta test Final Fantasy XIV Online with him, and although I wasn’t overly excited about this, sometimes you just have to bend over and take it up the ass from your friends.
Anyway, after two days of trying to get through I finally managed it today. The first thing that is tackled is your character creation (as usual). I’m used to only having a few options to work with, so the character creation here was a bit overwhelming for the simple person that I am. With that in mind, let’s run through setting up your character and beginning game play:
You start off with 3 empty character slots. Once you pick one, you then get to choose your race. The options are:
- Elezen (My choice)
When you hover over each race choice, you can check out their stats (strength, vitality, piety, etc) and read a blurb about their background. From here you start to customize your character’s appearance- gender, skin tone, height, etc, but there are a several, tinier details that you can tweak such as eye and pupil shape (who’s going to be looking that closely?), hair highlight colour (this is nice if you like aesthetics, but still…), and other facial feature which oddly enough determine the size of your breasts (if you play a female).
Now that you’re happy with your look, you must decide on your beginning discipline and class. The options are:
- Discipline of War – You are a master of weapons. (My choice)
- Discipline of Magic – You study and command all forms of sorcery through artifacts and relics.
- Discipline of Land – You are a gatherer of plants and minerals.
- Discipline of Hand – You are a crafting wench, working with everything from cloth to metal.
From here you pick your class. Now, I don’t know if your choice in discipline affects your class choice, but I’m assuming so as all of the options I got revolve around tanking and physical damage, with no option for a caster/healer class. Since this an MMO, there HAS to be a broader range of classes, but I could be wrong. Anyway, MY options were:
- Gladiator – Specializes in one handed blades and shields.
- Marauder – Primarily uses a two handed great axe, but also uses throwing axes.
- Pugilist – Best in hand-to-hand combat, powerful when unarmed and can use throwing weapons. (My choice)
- Archer – Ranged, duh.
- Lancer – Primarily uses two handed pole-arms, but can use a variety of large, thrusty weapons.
The next thing you need to decide on is your Name Day and Guardian. I have no idea how this will affect me, so I just randomly picked a number for the Sun and Moon options and picked a Guardian that sounded kickass: Rhalgr, the Destroyer (God of Destruction).
You now get to choose your name, and you get a last name right from the start instead of having to earn it/buy it later as in other MMOs.
After you’re satisfied with your name, you can choose your realm and starting city. For anyone that would like to play with me:
- Realm: Fabul
- Name: Mairwen Draketheion
- City: Gridania
That’s it for the setup. I won’t lie, it was pretty time consuming… so if that bugs you just go with whatever the default settings are.
The opening cinematic is not too bad, and it was cool to see my actual character walking through it, rather than some random NPC that may or may not be me. Once the actual game play started, I was confused. There is no visual clue as to what you need to do, and when I saw someone laying at my feet, I didn’t know how to interact with them as hovering my mouse/clicking them did nothing. The second I moved closer to this mysterious body, the lag came and it came hard…so hard that there was about a 2 second delay in movement- and I can’t play like that. I assume that this is because everyone and their mother is playing, but I could be wrong. Also, I’m not overly fond of the HUD right now, but I may try and hop on much later tonight to see if I can fiddle with some settings.
That’s it for now! I will try and post something again soon.