An awful lot of stuff involving Final Fantasy XI decided to happen all at once, so here I am with a recap type thing. Here's a big list of all kinds of things that have been going on in Vana'diel.
"|Play| that |fun||key||music||White Mage|" indeed. As RPGamer reported here, a Final Fantasy XI arranged album is in production. In addition to reading the news at that last link, Square-Heaven's got a link to stream some of the music and a bunch of people talking about FFXI stuff that you can check out here. The whole stream is very long and if you speak Japanese, probably interesting to watch.
Don't Call it a Comeback:
The two different "Return Home to Vana'diel" campaigns are near over, and they seem to have worked. Within the game, I recently encountered a party which had multiple returners within it. Oddly enough, none of them were playing their restored characters, which is the big lure to come back in the first place. Only one of the three returning players within the group got his/her data back, though I'm sure this percentage is much lower than the actual restoration rate in the game.
What's in this Box?:
You've probably heard about the game spreading to Xbox 360, with plans currently having the game ready at system's launch. Being the reporter I am, I decided to ask the players in a party I joined if anyone would switch to Xbox 360 some time down the road. I expected nothing but hate, but I got two positive responses. Of the six in our party, three people were using PC and three were PS2 players. The two who said they'd switch to Xbox 360 were split, one from each platform. Again, the percentage here probably doesn't hold throughout the whole game, but I was taken back a bit to find two people in the same group who were already planning to switch to Xbox 360.
Changes minor and major happen all the time in virtually all MMORPGs, but Final Fantasy XI has been going through quite a few in a short period of time (perhaps to help keep those who left and have come back). The one most likely to cause a stir is the ease put on the level grind. The "to next level" EXP amounts for all levels over 50 have been decreased, for one thing, and the EXP for many "Easy Prey" and "Decent Challenge" monsters will be increased in the next version update.
The Vana'diel Tribune II is up to Eight volumes now, and I must say it's way better than the old one. Yeah, I'm not going anywhere with that. I just figured I'd mention it somewhere.
So I wondered lately, what would be best for FFXI's future? I asked some people in our IRC channel what needs to happen in the game's future, particularly with the next expansion. I unfortunately didn't get any answers on the expansion pack, but the general consesus was that more gil sellers be banned. Other answers included "Aeris revival code."
We don't know much at this point, but I think new job classes could be the best feature of the next expansion; I don't mean that in terms of "fun" or anything, I mean it will most help the general game. New areas and all that jazz are always nice, but the high, highend players are saying the endgame areas are getting mighty crowded. New job classes give people a reason to start fresh, which should put an ease on that problem. And maybe...just maybe...maybe FFXI is due for a new race? Eh? Thoughts? Don't be afraid to tell me what you think by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.