In its transition from alpha to beta Square Enix are claiming some improvements to Final Fantasy XIV, the game derided as “pathetically boring,” saying they have sped things up, but some doubt remains as to whether they have gone far enough in what must be close to the retail version…

The comparison video they released:

Quoth Square Enix:

We are happy to call attention to some improvements made in transitioning from the alpha version to the new beta version of FINAL FANTASY XIV. Notice the difference in lighting, the new depth of field effect, and the faster battle system.

The beta seems to boast some moderate graphical improvements, though the combat seems as soporific as ever… with no further substantive improvements likely, hopefully this level of thrilling anti-rat combat will suffice.

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    Comment by Anonymous
    04:01 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Slower speeds.
    Slower progress.
    Customer base plays longer to achieve goals.

    Customer pays you money for longer?

    Avatar of PrinceHeir
    Comment by PrinceHeir
    06:30 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    hmm good to see this game is progressing well maybe square could u know? finished versus xiii and the 3rd birthday so that that we can get agito xiii and dragon quest X on the way. not to mention they also said the fabula nova crystallis isn't exclusive to the ps3,psp, and 360 so there's a chance for a wii game right?

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:40 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Pro-tip: SE is a big company that different teams working on different games simultaneously.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:03 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    So level 1-10 on any other MMO is more exciting than that? give me a break. of course it looks stupid and boring it's the very basics of the combat system! besides, most of this game will be played in groups or at least pairs. chill out. and if you don't like it, don't play it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:19 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    well i hope this time SE desapear the HNMs, the reason it was very boring wait for hours for the claim, and the community is a shit, always guildmaster and officer win everything, the member was only tools
    ffxi sucks for community, hnm, racist with outher class (when people prefer invite ninja because they are lazy to heal), for hnmls you need fucking 5 class high lvl is ridiculous

    Avatar of Barbarian of Gor
    Comment by Barbarian of Gor
    01:15 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)


    They did improve the lighting and texture effects. BUT- Note they started from inside a city, what looked like it might be an official building.

    Now, let's say it's the "Office" you work at daily, or the saloon, etc. Which lighting set would you use; a - the more realistic set or b - the "Kafka nightmare" set?

    The battles, though, just pure laugh city. FPS shooter should mean FPS freedom. I frankly don't like that you go through a Final Fantasy map and then randomly the screen blurs and you fight monsters. If the computer allows a giant, many miles wide area to walk around in, then just have monsters roaming about normally.

    Likewise, ditch the "Turn" thing where you each stand their waiting to smack each other. There's plenty of ways to chain attacks into a controller with all the button options now.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:15 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    You see, if you'd have done just a little research you wouldn't look as stupid as you do now.

    Avatar of Barbarian of Gor
    Comment by Barbarian of Gor
    03:26 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Excuse my "French" but what the "FUCK" are you talking about you pathetic attack troll?

    I watched da vid, and gave my opinions...

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:17 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    awesome.. now you're finally on par with FFXIII...

    Avatar of Y10NRDY
    Comment by Y10NRDY
    02:02 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'm not kidding my eyes just shut while watching the video. I am disappoint.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:30 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The whole combat system just breaks any sense of immersion you might have developed by seeing the game world. Things would be better off if they made it like Phantasy Star Online's combat system. Instead of trying to over complicate everything with some stupid futuristic HUD combat system where stabbing a rat takes as much effort as writing an essay on religion.

    But no.. it's called Final Fantasy. Gotta have some sort of pseudo tactical combat system that makes you feel like a genius when you learn how to kill something.

    ~Ganthir (first post on Sankakucomplex ever. Not like anyone would care)

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:16 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I feel like im taking crazy pills here. THIS IS THE SAME PIECE OF SHIT GAME THAT FF11 WAS!!

    Comment by Pyrolight
    04:43 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    You get a point for the Zoolander reference. Otherwise meh.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:16 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Looks like you can do more things in a shorter amount of time, yeah.

    Solo-play seems as slow as any other MMORPG, but I guess they have to do that to encourage group play--if you could do everything by yourself in a timely manner, you wouldn't team up, right?

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:32 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    looks much better but battles still look long for non-factor enemies.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:53 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    horrible battle music

    Avatar of Reizo
    Comment by Reizo
    09:50 01/07/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The graphics are amazing, especially for an MMO.

    I think I'll enjoy this one, despite the hate articles.

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:03 01/07/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    They should just leave it to the koreans..

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:59 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Could've been good, I guess, but meh. Gonna stick with EVE.

    Avatar of Fox89
    Comment by Fox89
    21:19 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Looks alright to me. I agree the alpha version looked way too slow to be any fun, but it seems much better now. It's still a slow paced system, but there's nothing wrong with that. I can see myself enjoying it now as long as the strategy is strong enough.

    It doesn't all have to be lightning fast action like FFXIII or real time stuff. I'm happy enough with what I see there.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:40 07/07/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    OK maybe the combat's faster but it still doesn't look interesting.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:29 24/08/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Looks like WoW with different theme....

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:27 25/08/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    fuck this shit, i'm going back to world of warcraft

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:01 07/07/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The best thing this game could hope to be is another bad WOW clone. Unless they take a new approach like Bioware's doing with Star Wars then these guys are going to stay as dead as their hope with hope.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:47 05/08/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Why is it that I'm more attracted to the beta version graphic-wise?

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:26 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    What a slow and boring game. The guy fights for over 30 seconds and some jellyfish trash mob is still around 40% hp. Step it up already. The character looks like some old man who needs to catch his breath for 5 seconds every time he swings his sword.

    Square-Enix is succeeding very well in attracting old people who need to look at the keyboard to find their hotkeys ("Now where is my 1 key? Oh, there it is" *slowly presses*) whenever it's their turn to attack. Yeah, we wouldn't want old folks to be stressed out while playing.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:59 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    That's exactly what they did in FFXI, but a lot of people who stayed in FFXI for friends said they wouldn't play FF14 so I doubt it would work as well a second time.

    Avatar of Diorte
    Comment by Diorte
    10:14 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The speed looks about fine now. Considering you have to wait your turn in every FF game, the time it takes between turns now is no different than most FF games. Anyone whining about the speed should play FFT and learn what slow means.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:00 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    why don't they just implement real time fighting/casting instead... that'd be much more interesting than waiting for your bar to heal up when you want to swing your sword. (Monster Hunter style :D)

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:20 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    because this isn't diablo... this is an mmorpg..

    Comment by Neutral_Eyes
    09:41 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Delicious Miqo'te...

    I do like the field depth improvements a lot, doesn't let beautiful scenery go to waste, even on a single monitor. The lighting looks better, if a bit overdone for the demo video.

    Battle tempo appears to be much improved. However, it's mentioned in a few interviews that this destroys your ability to chat while in battle (or make sandwiches if you're a Monk). I like the idea of playing a more active role (compared to, say, an FFXI damage dealer) and this style of combat should cut out leechers quickly. Though, I think casual conversation is important and might be missed quite a bit.

    Did this video use the ambient occlusion feature they briefly discussed?

    Avatar of RunnerRed
    Comment by RunnerRed
    09:14 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Funny. video title reminds me of a very old and far more catastrophic real rpg ; "metamorphosis alpha"

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:37 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    This game seems to have improved a lot of gameplay systems over FFXI. The new battle system is so much faster than XI, it looks like a blast to play.

    Also, people are forgetting that this game is going to allow more than 6 members per party. If the battle was any faster, it'd be a hectic mess which would gimp the strategic element(which FFXI actually somewhat required). It's great that they're actually taking elements from the traditional FF job/battle systems, too.

    Also, did SanCon's writers get raped by SE? Why are they so anti-Final Fantasy?

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:29 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Final Fantasy XI wasn't much faster than this either.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:49 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    It took nowhere near 7-8 seconds to swing if you were geared and supported right. Haste gear, spell, and March(es) would almost halve that attack time.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:58 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Love how easy it is to pick out the fanboys from these comments...

    But anyway, this will end up being a terrible mmo unless they redo the combat system at the very least. And tactics, in an mmo, ohh yeah~!

    Player A: I'll execute skill A, after i'm done you should try to stun the rat with skill B, ok?
    Player B: Alright, will do.
    *Player A goes to bed*
    Player B: Ok, it's 4am, and it's my turn to attack (Uses skill B). Player C you handle the next attack.
    Player C: Alright.
    *Mob dies after 48 hours, they all had a good night's sleep, watched some porn, few movies and rat finaly died*

    FF greatness.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:42 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Not conceited but truth. Are you telling me you would rather click once and let the game do all the work, or do it hands on like most console games. E.g god of war, DMC, Ninja Gaiden, if i play a console i want that experience not a turn based system. I mean this is free flow as well, so it's not a simple turn base like final fantasy and random battles, this is like having a game slower than World of warcraft, ON a console. Sorry but I can't see how anyone can enjoy that, because this doesn't even give you a decent JRPG story since it's an mmo anyway, right now im seeing nothing going for this game.

    Comment by Neutral_Eyes
    21:06 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    FFXI had great storylines throughout, and most of its later short quests were entertaining as well.

    And did you really just compare an FF MMO to Ninja Gaiden?

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:39 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    You can chain skills in Aion, you're not dependent on a single bar filling up.

    Avatar of SpideyPHL
    Comment by SpideyPHL
    01:03 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    It is considerably faster than before. Also note that, because you have to input individual attacks like a traditional FF (or a game like City of Heroes), it's a lot different feel from ffxi and some other games with auto-attack. Really, if you input attacks any faster than that there'd be constant button mashing, and you would lack some ability to effectively choose your skills when playing on a controller. I think that's a good reason MMOs should require keyboards, but that's neither here nor there.

    I really don't know what you're complaining about though, as aside from the mob having too much hp, it looks comparable to most other MMOs as far as combat goes, especially over the last couple of years as many have moved away from auto-attack. But then, this site's full of trolls looking for any excuse to bash ff after all, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised. I'd feel less justified in that opinion if people gave a reason why they thought the combat was boring other than just "zzz".

    Avatar of Dirty_Dingus008
    Comment by Dirty_Dingus008
    01:02 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Joy~ Shadows that Don't shift in the BETA while do in the ALPHA! And the exciting combat? Still there... Bet if you drop a fucking mountain on that rat - it'll still only twitch~~~~

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:20 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Wat, combat is TONS faster in Beta. Renewed my excitement for this game as that was my only concern.

    Avatar of owi2000
    Comment by owi2000
    20:20 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well, it's not a huge improvement. I'm not in alpha/beta, so all I have to judge by is what I see in the video.

    The video does illustrate a slight increase in running speed, although since the perspective/camera distance between the two versions is slightly different, it's unclear exactly how much of an improvement it is.

    Having played FFXI, it looks like the enemy health still scales far too high with respect to player level, making combat still take an excessively long time. Also, time between attacks (I'm assuming the primary attack method is still auto-attack?) is quite high.

    In my opinion, if I'm going to pay for a game, I expect it to be a good, fun time-sink. That said, I don't believe that fighting the same mob for 5+ minutes is what I consider fun (actually happened alot for me in FFXI). Unless the combat is sped up, I can't see getting into this, even though I liked the FFXI environment.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:20 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    FFXI is geared for group vs mob combat so of course the mobs will be tough solo, looks the same for FFXIV - a good thing in my book.

    Avatar of owi2000
    Comment by owi2000
    03:27 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I agree to an extent. However, if you're high enough level that the mob won't even aggro you anymore, you should also be able to kill it with little trouble. Think of WHM. I remember getting killed by things much, much lower level than me, simply because they weren't weak to magic like elementals are. Otherwise, what is it supposed to be afraid of? The damage done to a mob should scale with the level of the mob enough to allow that.

    I can't tell the level of the character or the mob in this video, so I can't say if it should be a 'fair' fight or an 'easy' fight. However, if they haven't changed that mechanic, the game will be a painful grind session for some jobs, same as FFXI was. In the video the attacks don't appear to be very strong, and it takes a while to do a significant amount of damage. That's the point I was making.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:00 07/08/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Actually I solo all the time in FFXI and I kill mobs and Get Chain #4+ solo. I kill VT and IT mobs for those that know..the game is pretty easy. and IMO more fun than WoW. but that's my Opinion. but again the game shines when in a group and you work like a well oiled machine in dispatching the mobs. I really hope they don't take that away from this game.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:37 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    FFXIV is apparently supposed to have a lot of group vs group of mobs instead of fighting one at a time.

    Avatar of DarkJack
    Comment by DarkJack
    21:10 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    nope, auto-attack is not in FFXIV. If you don't give your character any commands it will do absolutely nothing, well apart from evade, parry and block based on chance.

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:17 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I don't know, doesn't seem impressive enough for my taste...

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:09 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The new battle system is faster, that's for sure.

    Although it won't please everybody. Either it's too fast or it's too slow or it's not engaging enough just goes on and on.

    You know what happens when devs listen to their fanbase too much? You get world of warcraft (free epic armor for everyone!).

    Avatar of Lilith
    Comment by Lilith
    20:18 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    And that's bad why? When everyone competes with the same gear it's easy to see who's better or not, or do you think you're special because your armor is rarer? It's a game, being mad because other people's armor is as purple as yours is simply idiotic.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:12 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    people in MMOs like rewards based on effort. WoW doesn't offer that. You obviously can't play a game without finding every cheat to unluck the game for you i'm sure.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:18 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Just saying here, people like you don't understand why most of the "raiders" enjoyed raiding to begin with. Showing off your loot was nice and all, but the fact is we all know that no one on the server gives a fuck.

    It's about the accomplishment, practicing, refining your strategy, and then finally defeating the boss in a perfect symphony of interaction amongst guildmates. The gear wasn't about pwning teh noobz. It was something you earned.

    Blizzard took that away, which is why I quit in the end. You have no idea how utterly insulting it was to have TotC released before even 1% of the playerbase had beaten the hard modes in Ulduar, oh, and guess what? All those hard mode drops are inferior to badge loot from vendors or drops from normal mode TotC.

    In the old days, you had attunements and gear checks on boss fights, meaning every piece of loot in every raid instance was moving you and your guild further ahead. Now what's the point? There is no such thing as progression for you and your guild. Every time a new instance releases your gear gets boosted near instantly to the level needed for that instance, effectively making all that effort you put forth worthless.

    All this because people who didn't like raiding felt it wasn't fair that guilds that did had better gear. The irony is that the guilds aren't elitist, the playerbase just hated that those who put in more effort had better gear.

    Well, you got your wish. Gear means nothing, guild and players progression means nothing, so there's no reason to play the game anymore.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:13 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    WoW is easy garbage starter MMO. get over it.

    Avatar of InB4Haruhi
    Comment by InB4Haruhi
    02:54 30/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Not only that but it's just silly. A little comedy is fine but the armor looks more and more like something a kid would make the higher you get... there are cases where that's not true but still.

    Avatar of Lilith
    Comment by Lilith
    21:35 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Hm, that's a good one, but still an excuse, did you kill 0 light Yogg? Did you kill Arthas hard mode? Etc.

    It might be easier to get good gear, but that is really good for most hardcore guilds, it makes it easier for them to recruit people since they won't have to waste their own gear on applicants that might as well leave after they got their items.

    WoW is not easy, WoW is different, I PvP'd to gladiator several seasons, regardless of how dumbed down PvP is you can't say it's easy, that's like comparing football to basketball and saying basketball is easier because you score more times.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:27 29/06/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    There is always PvP...

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