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Matsui's Interim Report – Sorry to keep you all waiting!Follow

#1 Nov 28 2012 at 4:12 PM Rating: Excellent
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Akihiko Matsui wrote:


Hello.

Thank you all very much for your continued patronage of FINAL FANTASY XI.

Firstly, let me apologize that so much time has passed since my last post.

I have been struggling to comprehend each of the below points and organize everything to tell you all, and before I knew it, months had already passed by.

- How has Vana'diel changed in the past two years?
- How do all of the players feel about these changes?
- What kinds of discussions are taking place within the development and operations team?
- With what kind of intentions and ways of thinking is work being done?
- What are the plans from here on out?

I'm at a point that I'd really like more time for all of this, but I can't just keeping saying that.

With that said, I'd like to share with you an interim report of what we are doing right now and what we would like to do moving forward.

Regarding the Roadmap

I apologize for the delays with the currently released roadmap. There are two reasons for this.

The first reason is that since the schedule was released before the announcement of Seekers of Adoulin, the effects of the development load for the expansion were much larger than anticipated.

The second reason is that the hours needed to work on and discuss all of the forum topics was much greater than we anticipated.

While we looked into a revised version of the roadmap to release, instead of redoing everything that was up until March 2013, we feel it's necessary to take time to build out a proper development plan from next year on, starting with redefining development plans and then deciding on the practical work content so that we do not disappoint all of you.

It's hard for me to ask this, as we've already caused everyone to worry and be inconvenienced, but please give us a bit more time.

Understanding the Current Situation

I have been reading over what everyone thinks, not only from all of the posts made on the forum, but from players' blogs, Twitter, and other sources.

For example, there's the concern with content and that the necessary content is not reaching the necessary people.

When thinking about the amount of content made thus far, it's not that the amount of content is skimpy by any means; however, I believe a contributing factor for this concern is that a lot of older content requires more than a party, but it has become quite difficult for a lot of players to do things with full parties these days.

Currently, due to the fact that there's a lack of low-difficulty and casual content, a majority of players are focusing on high-difficulty content, and there has been a lot of feedback that even though they log in they can't do what they want (nothing to do). Also affecting this is that things have become more complicated since adjustments have been made to drop rates and item stats.

Development Plans

With all that said, to make it easy to understand, we will be redefining and deciding on themes for the below points:

- Content structure
- Jobs overall
- How to add stats to items
- How to hand out rewards

I'd personally like to see players that are below level 99 reach level 99 quickly (we will be looking into whether we can make adjustments so that the level 95 limit quest can be completed solo), and for players that have reached level 99, I’d like to create separate elements such as solo, group, casual, hardcore, and provide game play after defining themes for new elements and adjusted elements.

It's necessary to make adjustments to increase the win/success rate for content that has already been played out by the top groups so that players that come later can catch-up.

For example, strengthening players through job adjustments or the addition of gear works, but another good method is to directly lower the difficulty of content. Of course this is all on the basis that we provide another challenge and even better rewards for the top groups.

Also, in regards to existing content, we will be redefining the number of people required, the level spread, and reward difficulty, and look into making adjustments to fit the needs of the current Vana'diel.
(I feel it would be best to work on the paths to these various types of content for adventurers that are coming back after a long break.)

In regards to item stats, this is a crucial growth element as you cannot level up past level 99. It's necessary to release items with stronger and really good stats in the future. For how you receive items, as many of you have requested on the forums, I'd like to have a point system in place for when you miss out on a reward that has its drop rate set low due to difficulty adjustments.

Additionally, there are a number of things that need to be decided such as aspects of battle that are not balanced up to level 99. For example, I believe the workings of the entire enmity system needs adjustment and the problem of TP given to enemies is an important issue to look into.

Once the framework of all of this has been decided, I will talk to the staff and we’ll decide exactly what we would like to do from here on out. Once all the details have been organized I will be sure to share the future plans with you all. Of course that will not be the ultimate finalized plan, as we would like to really hear your feedback now more than ever.

In Closing

I believe there are quite a few of you who would like me to communicate swiftly and with a high frequency like when I was using Twitter. Back then I was able to focus on Twitter all day long, but unfortunately these days I'm not as free as I once was. Sorry about that.

However, once things calm down a bit I would like to show my face a bit more.
(Even though I am taking notes while I read the forum, I haven't been able to handle it all…)

I’m still in the midst of learning what it means to be producer, but I am doing the very best I can and would like to build a FINAL FANTASY XI with you all that will be loved by everyone.

Again, thank you all so much for your continued support.



http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxi/threads/28932-Interim-Report-%E2%80%93-Sorry-to-keep-you-all-waiting!?p=382187#post382187

Edited, Nov 28th 2012 5:18pm by Szabo
#2 Nov 28 2012 at 4:19 PM Rating: Excellent
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#3 Nov 28 2012 at 5:43 PM Rating: Excellent
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For how you receive items, as many of you have requested on the forums, I'd like to have a point system in place for when you miss out on a reward that has its drop rate set low due to difficulty adjustments.


Woot, incremental progress!
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#4 Nov 28 2012 at 7:36 PM Rating: Excellent
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The way I see it, Matsui has a manure problem on the floor right now. Tanaka was content to let it pile up, but Matsui is not. Besides if it was literal manure, the smell would be chasing everyone out by now.

Hopefully that means next update will be a really good one; I figured it'd be 3-6 months before we saw many changes, I think it took that long for XIV to change.

Edited, Nov 28th 2012 8:37pm by maryadavies
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#5 Nov 28 2012 at 7:40 PM Rating: Excellent
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Im happy they are going to finally fix the enmity system. Fix not break even worse I hope lol
#6 Nov 28 2012 at 7:52 PM Rating: Excellent
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Man, this frickin guy. I have no idea how he does it, but he manages to actually inspire confidence within me that he knows what he's doing, despite saying very little of substance. I almost wish I had time to play nowadays, just to see what he and his team will do with this expansion, since it really seems like they're actually taking this seriously for once.
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#7 Nov 28 2012 at 9:23 PM Rating: Default
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This is great, but I'm not sure about the point regarding a lack of low-difficulty and casual content. This is pretty much all that is in the game with the exception of maybe Legion and NNI.
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#8 Nov 28 2012 at 10:10 PM Rating: Excellent
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He said point based system...I hope its like Assault or Einherjahr. Being able to at least walk away with some feeling of progression is one thing this game really really lacks. There are very few events that say, thanks for playing, here is the booby prize...remember if you collect 12 boobs we can trade them up to a bigger prize!!!

Actually it sounds like a carnival...and I do believe carnivals are fun,
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#9 Nov 28 2012 at 10:21 PM Rating: Excellent
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Man, I loved the coin/ticket system at ShowBiz Pizza (before it became Chuck E Chees's, stealing the jingle and everything.) There was this one 3D pinball machine with a frog mouth, and I had the timing down on it. It would spit out tons of tickets if you timed it right. My parents would give me around twenty dollars worth of coins, and I'd play that one machine until I had enough tickets for the prize I wanted, then spend the rest on skeeball or whack a mole.

Then, one day they wised up and removed that machine. My ticket bonanza was nerfed. Smiley: crymore
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I can't understand anyone who skips the cutscenes of a Final Fantasy game. That's like going to Texas and not getting barbecue.

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#10 Nov 28 2012 at 10:29 PM Rating: Excellent
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I still to this day have never got my Dchap. I quit honestly and decided that the gaming gods deemed I shall not receive it. If only dynamis had a point based system, my liver knows how much dynamis I did...Why can't SE recognize it. FOR % **** YEARS! Everytime it was my turn at the top we would run cities or some sh*t, or the shell exploded.

@#%^ that DCHAP. @#%^ it I say.

But ya points system best system. Makes me feel like I earned something other than jaundice of the liver.

Edited, Nov 28th 2012 11:30pm by rdmcandie

Edited, Nov 28th 2012 11:30pm by rdmcandie
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#11 Nov 28 2012 at 11:05 PM Rating: Excellent
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Honestly, the best and fairest HNMs I've been in have run on points, even without SE. My first HNM was "leader decides who gets it" style. The first time I saw an Aspi go down and the abjuration for a Dalmatica drop, I saw the leader give it to the mithra who was his girlfriend even though there were plenty of other mages who were far more worthy, and after that I vowed I'd never be in a points free system again.

And yeah, SE hates us. We already knew that. That's why Turul turns invisible every time we decided to take a stab at him. I think he's roosting on one of the rocky hill areas, pointing and laughing at us.
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I can't understand anyone who skips the cutscenes of a Final Fantasy game. That's like going to Texas and not getting barbecue.

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#12 Nov 28 2012 at 11:14 PM Rating: Good
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I just noticed I put "FOR % **** YEARS!" when I meant to put FOR 4 **** YEARS! Ironically enough the % key s under the 5 so that doesn't even make sense. But It did make me smile, the more you know!.
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#13 Nov 28 2012 at 11:43 PM Rating: Excellent
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Thing is abyssea and VW have hit the point sky was at back at 75, people might still need gear from it but it is either gear for non-main jobs or they just don't care anymore. SE has to keep it fresh or people will just leave and they better have more then just savage 2.0, and more of attack of the mole people coming.
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#14 Nov 28 2012 at 11:44 PM Rating: Good
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catwho wrote:
Man, I loved the coin/ticket system at ShowBiz Pizza (before it became Chuck E Chees's, stealing the jingle and everything.) There was this one 3D pinball machine with a frog mouth, and I had the timing down on it. It would spit out tons of tickets if you timed it right. My parents would give me around twenty dollars worth of coins, and I'd play that one machine until I had enough tickets for the prize I wanted, then spend the rest on skeeball or whack a mole.

Then, one day they wised up and removed that machine. My ticket bonanza was nerfed. Smiley: crymore


I remember this! But it vaguely felt like cheating. So I just got really good at skeeball. With a steady hand, you could hit that middle 5 point'er almost every time.
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#15 Nov 29 2012 at 4:16 AM Rating: Good
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RavennofTitan wrote:
Thing is abyssea and VW have hit the point sky was at back at 75, people might still need gear from it but it is either gear for non-main jobs or they just don't care anymore. SE has to keep it fresh or people will just leave and they better have more then just savage 2.0, and more of attack of the mole people coming.


This is mostly a result of FFXIV taking their best developers (straight from Yoshi's mouth) and focusing everything they have on remaking FFXIV into a success. It's left FFXI with too few developers to produce much of anything, so instead they attempt to drag out and extend old content or make stupidly hard content that your not supposed to beat (against they basically told us this).
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#16 Nov 29 2012 at 9:46 AM Rating: Excellent
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Akihiko Matsui wrote:
For example, I believe the workings of the entire enmity system needs adjustment

And many wild flailings were given.

Erecia wrote:
Man, this frickin guy. I have no idea how he does it, but he manages to actually inspire confidence within me that he knows what he's doing, despite saying very little of substance.

This. It's such a staggering change from Tanaka's "F*CK YOU I DO WHAT I WANT"-ness.

rdmcandie wrote:
I still to this day have never got my Dchap. I quit honestly and decided that the gaming gods deemed I shall not receive it. If only dynamis had a point based system, my liver knows how much dynamis I did...Why can't SE recognize it. FOR % **** YEARS! Everytime it was my turn at the top we would run cities or some sh*t, or the shell exploded.

@#%^ that DCHAP. @#%^ it I say.


Well he does speak of making older content more accessible, if not outright easier, and that already happened for Dynamis... Considering last time I did Dyna-Xarc solo I threw out a Dchap for lulz, got another, and found out I already had one on the Porter Moogle.

Just sayin'... Your gripe has already been addressed in exactly the manner he lists for dealing with such a gripe.

Edited, Nov 29th 2012 7:55am by Raelix
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#17 Nov 29 2012 at 10:12 AM Rating: Good
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Well he does speak of making older content more accessible, if not outright easier, and that already happened for Dynamis... Considering last time I did Dyna-Xarc solo I threw out a Dchap for lulz, got another, and found out I already had one on the Porter Moogle.

Just sayin'... Your gripe has already been addressed in exactly the manner he lists for dealing with such a gripe.


Come on man you think I don't know dynamis has changed. I still can't be assed to worry about getting a Dchap. 1 tick/refresh and some enfeebling skill isn't worth the time spent talking to the Abyssea guy to get a warp. It was more a joke than anything. But considering the hat is all but useless to me, why bother getting it? If I was meant to have it when it was useful Id have it, but the gods of the game said no, and I respect their decision.

**** the DCHAP.
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#18 Nov 29 2012 at 10:38 AM Rating: Excellent
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Honestly this doens't mean much to me. Just the other week they stated something along the lines "the development team does believe it's okay to have content that cannot be beat." And when people actually beat it, they nerf the tools we use (Embrava, PD), but not the monsters. Not to mention SE has stated many things only to turn around and say no. Does anyone remember the Job manifestos, what happened to those? Does anyone remember Bst having a way to raise their TH. SE says things all the time that contradict their actions. This seems more like damage control from the statements said in the other Dev post to be honest. Sorry if i'm skeptical of them actually doing anything.
#19 Nov 29 2012 at 10:42 AM Rating: Good
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rdmcandie wrote:
1 tick/refresh and some enfeebling skill isn't worth the time spent talking to the Abyssea guy to get a warp. It was more a joke than anything. But considering the hat is all but useless to me, why bother getting it? If I was meant to have it when it was useful Id have it, but the gods of the game said no, and I respect their decision.

@#%^ the DCHAP.


Actually it's +2 refresh now ;)

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#20 Nov 29 2012 at 10:44 AM Rating: Decent
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Nebo1 wrote:
rdmcandie wrote:
1 tick/refresh and some enfeebling skill isn't worth the time spent talking to the Abyssea guy to get a warp. It was more a joke than anything. But considering the hat is all but useless to me, why bother getting it? If I was meant to have it when it was useful Id have it, but the gods of the game said no, and I respect their decision.

@#%^ the DCHAP.


Actually it's +2 refresh now ;)



Everyone is a smart ass....
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#21 Nov 29 2012 at 10:48 AM Rating: Decent
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rdmcandie wrote:
Nebo1 wrote:
rdmcandie wrote:
1 tick/refresh and some enfeebling skill isn't worth the time spent talking to the Abyssea guy to get a warp. It was more a joke than anything. But considering the hat is all but useless to me, why bother getting it? If I was meant to have it when it was useful Id have it, but the gods of the game said no, and I respect their decision.

@#%^ the DCHAP.


Actually it's +2 refresh now ;)



Everyone is a smart ass....


Moi? lol

I think for the stats on it though, it is well worth a trip to Xarcabard. I get like 5 every single run. They drop to the floor so often...it hurts a little everytime.

You could just go in and shout for it and get like 5 invites to let you lot them before they hit the ground.
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#22 Nov 29 2012 at 12:41 PM Rating: Excellent
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This guy says the right things. I just hope he can follow through.

I do think there might be some worth towards making more gear from old content able to be upgraded as well, because part of the problem with level 75 content isn't that it is hard, but that most of it has so little reward that you can't easily find people willing to do it (especially for stuff with minimum entry requirements)

And now that people can blast to 99 (and they talk about making that even easier) what the **** is the point of all this 75 cap gear that mostly isn't even as good as pink/perle/teal? It's just clutter. If they could upgrade some of the stats to be more competitive with the abyss armor sets that would be nice - to have something to wear that wasn't abyss armor, slightly harder to get, wearable at a lower level...

I mean it might upset the "balance" of some BCNM or something if the stats were upgraded with the levels remaining the same... but if the idea is to blast everyone to 99, other than that, who cares if people are stronger at 75 than they used to be?

(For the record, I would love if they added some refresh and haste and other goodies to low low low lower level gear, but especially refresh... **** I don't care if they make it a latent that only activates below level 80 or something, but let's make being lower level more fun! Even if it doesn't last as long... would make skilling up magic less annoying.)

...anyway, that aside, I'm concerned that Matsui may have very good intentions indeed, but SE is treating XI like a toss away... all the resources are going to XIV. That means that regardless of what our producer wants, we will probably get screwed. I think I trust him to make the best out of a bad situation but that... is not quite enough for me

Edited, Nov 29th 2012 10:43am by Olorinus

Edited, Nov 29th 2012 10:44am by Olorinus
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#23 Nov 29 2012 at 1:43 PM Rating: Excellent
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Olorinus wrote:
This guy says the right things. I just hope he can follow through.
He said all the right things when he took the job. But then he followed it up with all manner of horrible things like terrible SP abilities, nerfed PD/Embrava (I find myself saying "I'm really going to miss Embrava" at least once every time we do Legion/Nyzul/Meebles), and laughable adjustments to Odin II/Legion HP. Oh and no SoA updates at all in how long? Also while I still have been doing Meebles, it's hard to argue that it's not clunky and clumsily implemented.

I am still hopeful, mind you, because he has said the right things. But anybody should be able to see that the second half of 2012 has been very dry indeed.
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#24 Nov 29 2012 at 2:51 PM Rating: Excellent
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Akihiko Matsui wrote:


Thank you all so much for the comments.

The main point of yesterday’s post was to illustrate how the current situation is being perceived and our direction. I will be doing my best to let you all know the specific plans for what we will be doing as the next step.

Also, instead of posting individual topics in this thread, please post the content into an appropriate thread. By talking in this thread it will become way too large and difficult to gather up all the feedback, so we appreciate your cooperation on this.

With that said, I will respond to some comments.

Quote:

I think that the development direction of redefinition is a good thing. However! From a user’s perspective it's rather late. I believe this is something that should have been done before big things like the Embrava and Perfect Defense changes or the new special abilities.

In any event, the current decay of the game is in full force. You understand this now, but unfortunately it took some time. Frankly, before your comment I really thought the game was going to collapse before Adoulin came out.

With the development team restructuring the development plans, I don’t think you need to be concerned with a roadmap. It's way better than having to add half-assed stuff and make pointless edits just to match the roadmap. I'd really like you to make a solid game patiently and diligently.

Also, in regards to the forums, I understand that you are in dire straits over there, but I think it would be best to address things a bit more frequently. I believe there are a lot of users that have left recently due to being ignored. The users that actually play the game understand the condition of the game best, so in order to keep those users from going away it's be best to listen to them. Please make a response even if the content is short, even if the response is weird. You can always retract the statement or apologize after the fact. If you don't understand, then ask the users. I really believe that it’s critical to continue to address things frequently.

I felt your spirit with this post. I think I will stick around and see what happens a bit longer.
Do you best! I don’t want to quit just yet!


As you pointed out, I would like to take this seriously.

Since we're not putting off version updates until we finish redefining everything, the redefining will be worked on alongside our regular work; however, even amidst this work I will be talking to the staff as much as possible and have them work on this as well.

In regards to adjustments, regardless of them being big or small I feel it is integral to address them frequently. Similarly for the forum as well, I will be doing my best.

Quote:

I'll be cheering you on with positivity! Please do your best!

Just one thing.

I believe moderation should be done more proactively on the forums. I think the reason why trash talk, cynicism, and other forms of negativity develop is because there is a lack or complete absence of reactions despite there being serious feedback. While some posts need to be made in a careful manner, the largest criticism in response to posts is that the way the game is thought about does not follow how the game is actually played at all. I'm sure that it is extremely difficult to play in Vana'diel while creating it, but it's difficult to understand certain things if you don’t actually play the game. Please try your best to play. Thanks.


Thank you very much. I will give it my all.

To be honest, it's not that the development team and community reps do not play the game. They actually proactively play.

So with that said then, why is there a misconception about the view of the game? One large reason is it seems there are cases where there are differences. Players want to continue discussions about only merits of a specific job, whereas we want to have discussions about jobs overall with a top-down perspective. Another case is it's only possible for everyone to talk about information that has been released, whereas the development side is aware of future plans or is envisioning them in the back of their mind.

For the former example, I believe this is a problem of whether it is a benefit for an individual or a benefit for the game, and we get stuck in an endless loop.

For the latter, however, I believe that this will improve if we can increase the amount of information that can be shared with the warning that the information is not finalized. However, it will lead to a game of telephone where there will be a risk that non-finalized is said to be finalized, so we would really appreciate your cooperation linking or quoting the original post if incorrect information is popping up.

Quote:

You only discussed battle content. Please do something about other aspects like chocobo raising and mog houses.


We will be addressing things besides battle.

However, since battle, jobs, and items are all closely interconnected, we consider this to be the largest pillar of the game's elements, so we would like to do this only after we are able to get all of these large elements into shape.

Quote:

I read over your post. I think the whole philosophy is great. However, there is one portion that I have a question on.

Quote:

Development Plans

With all that said, to make it easy to understand, we will be redefining and deciding on themes for the below points:

- Content structure
- Jobs overall
- How to add stats to items
- How to hand out rewards


Is it safe to assume by looking at this that you will not be doing anything to the core system? I believe one of the biggest problems is with haste and corresponding power inflation. I took what you said as you will be focusing on adjusting content and leaving these things as they are.


The battle system as whole, including haste, is in the scope of our discussions. I believe this to be an extremely delicate portion as it is an element that has a large extent of effects.

------------

The staff and I are operating the forum and developing while we bear in mind that critical feedback is a blessing.

However, it's not realistic to think that a single person is doing all of it. The other development staff and community reps are working very hard as well. With that said, I would like to ask that you do not single out members, scream for me, or attack certain individuals. I appreciate your cooperation with this.

Just like I have been doing with these posts, I promise to show my face around here a bit more, even if the content is short. In the case that I'm in-between meetings and misread something or cannot keep the conversation going, I will be sure to follow-up afterwards, so please go easy on me.

http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxi/threads/28932-Interim-Report-%E2%80%93-Sorry-to-keep-you-all-waiting!?p=382418#post382418

Edited, Nov 29th 2012 3:55pm by Szabo
#25 Nov 29 2012 at 3:02 PM Rating: Excellent
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All right, now I want to log into the official forums and slap whoever complained about Haste across the face with a large salmon.

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#26 Nov 29 2012 at 5:41 PM Rating: Excellent
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#27 Nov 29 2012 at 11:28 PM Rating: Excellent
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Now I'm imagining a taru lobbing a giant bone fish head akin to Soma Cruz in some of the Castlevania games.
#28 Nov 29 2012 at 11:53 PM Rating: Decent
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Great why do I sense a haste nerf coming.

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He said all the right things when he took the job. But then he followed it up with all manner of horrible things like terrible SP abilities, nerfed PD/Embrava (I find myself saying "I'm really going to miss Embrava" at least once every time we do Legion/Nyzul/Meebles), and laughable adjustments to Odin II/Legion HP.


The bolded portion is exactly why they were changed. They were a crutch. They were to strong...is it crappy that they got nerfed. Yes. Is it **** that people coming up behind can not now use the same strategy...yes it is. It has happened numerous times during this games life span and each time new strategies were born, and they became the new standards.

Even the crappy new SP's. As a RDM I am being gifted Elemental Seal and a **** retarded recast timer. It is a **** fucking ability. But you know what it doesn't even matter, because the abilities they target are **** anyway, and a BRD/RDM is as useful as my RDM, then it has **** BRD/ attached to it. But I also had/have one of the most useful and strategic 2HRS for 10 years. Chainspell is **** bause. It is by far the best 2HR in the game, so I am actually cool with my **** new. SP despite its utter uselessness, I don't give a **** RDM ain't getting invited anyway until they fix the issue with /RDM being better than it when attached to certain jobs.

Side Rant over.....

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#29 Nov 30 2012 at 10:29 AM Rating: Excellent
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Oooh! Oooh! I found a use for RDM! We did that one Windy WotG mission, Howl from the Heavens, where we had to fight 18 mobs in four waves. I came RDM to heal and haste and such and Diaga'd all the mobs before they could attack the wards, then used Phalanx and Stoneskin to tank the mobs while the DDs picked them off me.

I suppose I could have done it on WHM/RDM or PLD/RDM and done just as well, but the Fast Cast from my gear helped in keeping up Stoneskin. Smiley: lol

Edited, Nov 30th 2012 11:30am by catwho
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#30 Nov 30 2012 at 1:20 PM Rating: Excellent
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Akihiko Matsui wrote:

Quote:

I saw the version update information on PlayOnline just before posting and I noticed that it listed "Job Ability adjustments: Perfect Defense / Tabula Rasa." Does this mean that the new special abilities will also be implemented at the same time? If at all possible, I’d really like these new special abilities to be implemented with the Perfect Defense and Tabula Rasa nerfs.
Also, I don't mind how you do it, but could you please give some kind of response to the Perfect Defense thread? There are over 1400 posts there and just leaving it be is not good. Also there are numerous threads talking about the same thing, so how about closing them?


Sorry for the confusion.
First in regards to the new special abilities, the direction has pretty much been solidified, but there are still adjustments and fine tuning to be made, so we will not be implementing them in the upcoming version update. In regards to Perfect Defense and Tabula Rasa adjustments, we are aiming to have these implemented along with the content adjustments in the upcoming version update. We are currently making preparations to explain about this along with some other topics. We'll be informing you all early next week, so please wait for that for the time being.

Quote:

Akihiko Matsui wrote:

To be honest, it's not that the development team and community reps do not play the game. They actually proactively play.

You mean not on the Test Server, but on the actual servers mixed in with all of us players?


Yes, we all play on the same servers as all of you with regular accounts. (Of course the staff conceals their identities and plays as a regular player.)

I believe I mentioned this before, but there are a lot of times when I actually play in static parties with my family. I try my best to do things like returning lost chocobos, but, while this is embarrassing, I'm only at the level where I can challenge the Maat fight.

However, there are a good amount of hardcore players amongst the staff (there are also instances where hardcore players have joined the staff), and they are hardcore into the recent end-game content.

I’m always hearing things at the office like "Man, the Odin’s Chamber II I created is tough to beat!" and "We just barely lost a win on that low-man Arch Dynamis Lord run."

Quote:


I've been playing this game for quite a long time now and this is just something I noticed.
One time when I quit for a while and finally came back, I had absolutely no idea about the objectives, what to do, or the difficulty for all the content that had been implemented in my absence.
External sites' strategy guides and Wiki information are pretty easy to use for people that have continued to play the game, but I feel like it's way too much for a person with no knowledge to study up on everything. With that said, I think it would really help a lot if there was some kind of system that would breakdown the content design and teach you what each content is about, what level you can play it, and how to start it. This is sure to come in handy for new players coming in.


Thank you for the feedback.
Even I feel this as I just came back to the game the other day.
Up until now the stance for FINAL FANTASY XI has always been that the constantly varying trends, strategy, and other information are created from within the player community, but we didn't make it so all of the answers were on the official site.

This has continued for 10 years, and with the world and content growing massive currently, I really feel that it would be best to organize some form of instruction that shows "we recommend this kind of content at this level," "it would be good to get this kind of gear," etc. At this point in time this is really nothing more than a vague idea, so if you have any suggestions about what would be good, I would love to hear them.


http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxi/threads/28932-Interim-Report-%E2%80%93-Sorry-to-keep-you-all-waiting!?p=382782#post382782

Edited, Nov 30th 2012 2:23pm by Szabo
#31 Nov 30 2012 at 3:47 PM Rating: Excellent
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...three replies in three days...? I guess the world really is ending in a couple weeks.
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#32 Dec 05 2012 at 2:18 PM Rating: Excellent
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Akihiko Matsui wrote:


QA testing on this has concluded and we will just barely be able to implement this adjustment in the December version update. Specifically we will be changing the below:

- Removal of the rare status on Olde Rarab Tail / Fossilzed Fang / Fossilized Bone
- Increase of stack size from 1 to 12 for Olde Rarab Tail / Seasoning Stone / Fossilized Fang / Fossilized Bone


We also looked into the removal of the rare status from the fossils as well, and decided that we did not want to increase the amount of times players need to run around to get them, since we already have players taking time gaining battle experience and going around to defeat monsters to obtain these items.

We'd like to see a great deal of players get past this quest and become level 99, so please give it a shot.

Quote:

This touches on something that is unrelated the topic at hand and might be traumatic for you, but creating an evasive tank with Utsusemi expanded the game and I really enjoy tanking as a ninja.


I probably didn't explain this part too well.
I wasn't talking about the strategy of evasion tanking, what was traumatic was the history of mass producing monsters that countered evasion tanks. ><

I vaguely remember reading a blog post of an acquaintance that really stuck with me and made me realize evasion tanking has spread beyond just ninja:
"Today I was thinking, wow, I'm not having any trouble getting shadows up, but it turns out the dark knight was timing my shadows perfectly and supporting me with stuns. It was too awesome ♡”

------------

I believe that scholars who have very potent regen and the ability to extend enhancement effect durations will be useful in content such as the salvage that is to be implemented. However, I realize that there are disagreements between the thoughts of the development side and the thoughts of all of the players. Moving forward we will be closely monitoring the conditions of the public servers and be making adjustments as necessary based on all of your feedback. Please continue to hold discussions on the forums.


http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxi/threads/28932-Interim-Report-%E2%80%93-Sorry-to-keep-you-all-waiting!?p=384108#post384108
#33 Dec 05 2012 at 3:37 PM Rating: Excellent
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#34 Dec 06 2012 at 5:22 AM Rating: Decent
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I won't take them seriously until they alter the RDM's 60m "Elemental Seal -1". Zero positive feedback, massive **** tons of negative feedback, one of the worst jobs in the game (currently). Pretty much impossible to ~not~ notice those things. So if they actually care / listen to the users then there will be something different, if they don't give a flying f*ck then they'll put the 60m Elemental Seal -1 there.
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#35 Dec 06 2012 at 2:48 PM Rating: Default
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I came back from a 2 year break and had to start over. I have been here from 2006 on and thought it was great there was a challenge in the game. Challenge meaning for instance, the dreaded Airship battle, old style. There was only a certain percent of people that could beat that battle. I really liked the fact that it challenged my playstyle, thinking about enmity, how much to cure, how to act and how my team members had to act. In fact, it wasnt hard at all, as long as you had people that knew how to play, iow, had experience and insight. People without the knowledge or skill had little chance of beating this fight. Yes, I kinda regret that I couldnt get a casual team through this fight when leading a CoP run myself, what I really disliked is that they took away the option to try the old difficulty and took the challenge away.

It's ridiculously easy to get good gear nowadays, good gear that doesnt matter what you do, you can get it done with very little skill involved whatsoever. No content (besides certain battlefields or events that require ace gear to complete, for instance New Nyzul Ilse, that only gets you more uber-gear which there is no need for anyway but e-peen or completing the same content in an easier way), is hard. It's mostly boring and needless to do.

The problem I have is that I want to try difficult battles and I can find few people that have the skill involved to complete it. That DOESNT mean "Spam this monster 1000 times and maybe get the drop you want". That's not difficult, that's boring. Voidwatch high tier bosses might be difficult to beat without empyrean, relic or mythic weapons, but it's certainly possible. I would like to try them without relics, mythics and empyrean weapons and have the droprate increased for rare items if I complete it that way. Yes, that will upset all the people who can only do it the easy way by buying displacers, demanding relic wielding players and get a lower droprate on that gear. Doesnt really matter if they spam those fights or try the hard fights. At least, I have a CHOICE to choose to do it the hard way, and get rewarded in the process, somewhat. I replayed CoP and all the other add-ons and the only thing I was thinking was: Damn, this content is easy and there are almost no players to team up with/or willing to help me out. It's the journey of sharing, failing and finally succeeding that is the most fun to do. Where is the challenge? Shinryu? Maybe the first time without atma's and stats boosts, or without people brewing, having top tier gear, etc etc. There is NO challenge in this game, and when there is, it's because of unfair difficulties or ridiculous demands for a party to have gear-wise.

My point is, level 75 had a balance, yes the game was harder, I didnt mind at all. HNMs were a problem to get drops from. Did you need those drops? Not at all. You could complete all the storyline fights without any problems with a good team or help from experienced players WITHOUT top-tier gear.

The game's difficulty is a joke. Especially after coming back when 2 years have passed. And the new director wants to LOWER the difficulty?? Are you kidding me? Are games meant to be easy nowadays to be enjoyable? Or does difficulty means, get all the top-tier in the game and maybe you can win? With horrible droprates?

The problem with FFXI nowadays is that the majority of players are all casual players. That means there's not much knowledge of game strategy or structure on how battles are fought. It means grinding for all the top-tier gear and lower the difficulty by doing that. I remember doing certain battlefields and boss fights with a weird setup, without the "required" setup, like rdm for refresh, bards, blms etc etc. And winning! That was fun. Those were the good times. Going in with Pups, Smns and other jobs that weren't considered to be needed or useful and getting the win. I had a choice in doing so, even with difficult fights. I had a choice to make it harder by going in without the usual setups.

Now I dont have that choice, cause the storylines particularly have been pathetic in difficulty since the increase of the level cap. My only choice is to increase the difficulty by level syncing to 75 (and then it's still dumbed down from the initial difficulty). Guys, Im sad. Im glad I see lots of hardcore players returning and they are even more easy to recognise because of skill, but the way things are going, even more distance between the hardcore and casual players are being created. You need to bring everyone together again. Give us a reason to play together, to do content together. With the current difficulty and the coming lowering of the difficulty it's gonna be more soloing or dumb teaming up for Voidwatch and just zerg everything with a little incentive of strategy (read not really strategy).

I really hope A Realm Reborn is gonna be very difficult, or at least Seekers of Adoulin, cause im already bored after 6 months of playing from the start and there is no need to get better gear, I can trio everything in the game besides the level 99 hard fights. With decent, AH bought (mostly) gear. I miss the community, which you needed to have if you wanted to progress. I miss the hardcore players. I miss the hardcore players to help the casual players. Now, there is almost no need to. There is almost no knowledge about how to play a job given to newer players, they dont need to, they can leech almost anything, there is no reason to learn.

As a closing statement, Im by no means an expert player, or the best player there is out there, im a decent player, who thinks up fun strategies to beat a boss, and was known for that too. Beating bosses with very different setups. Now, there is no need to think up fun strategies, the game is too easy. Especially for returning players. I was never a fan of HNMLSs or doing Dynamis a 1000 times to maybe get a gear drop through a point system based egls. I would love to play casual, as long as the difficulty is still there, and not this dumbed down game that has stolen my heart with challenge in the past.
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#36 Dec 06 2012 at 3:04 PM Rating: Excellent
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MonarctheFirst, I agree with your sentiment and every but the "causal players have no skill". I am, and always have been a casual player. My real life comes before this or any other game. It may have taken me two years to have my Galka BLM (previous account) dealing respectable damage and adding to the parties survivability/win. So, respectfully speaking, shove the "causal player has no skill" menatallity down your throat. Many of these Empy +2 leet players don't have a clue about strategy or team play either. Some do, those left over from before ToAU.

I am working to get people interested in my social shell to try a six man, traditional party. A few others are asking about it and showing interest in sc + mb, doing proper SATA and working as a team instead of afking during a book burn without penalty. So do the same. Talk to members of your ls and run them back to qufim, the jungles or wherever and have fun.
#37 Dec 06 2012 at 3:35 PM Rating: Good
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Matsui is sounding so good that if he took over Hello Kitty Online I might just have to play that too.
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#38 Dec 06 2012 at 3:50 PM Rating: Excellent
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I feel that skill in a MMO is "how much time you spend in preparation". The more abilities and gear you have the easier content become.
#39 Dec 06 2012 at 4:02 PM Rating: Decent
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Solonuke wrote:
I feel that skill in a MMO is "how much time you spend in preparation". The more abilities and gear you have the easier content become.

Also how well you can handle the fight. CoP when it first came out is good example of needing appropiate gear and ability (skill) for success.
#40 Dec 06 2012 at 4:14 PM Rating: Excellent
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I also feel that after I beat the 6-4 fight the game didn't become any harder so I think that I've pretty much learned my job to perfection. After 6-4 the aim was to basically obtain better gear so you can zerg through fights without much skill needed. If you had a kraken club as a drk, you were a god among gods and made fights extremely easy.

My point is that skill caps after a while in a MMO and then the gear and all possible imaginable unlocks decides how "good" you are after.
#41 Dec 06 2012 at 4:25 PM Rating: Decent
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I don't remember anyone saying after 6-4 that CoP became easy just by getting gear. But then the expansion has been out for a long time now.

There is a difference between being good (zerging) and having skill which often is accompanied by having a strategy and adjusting on the fly as the mobs goes SE mode tp spam on a party. Alexander boss fight, AU, was difficult. Knowing when you could approach and to stay out of deaths approach. That is the last boss fight I can remember that wasn't zerg and win. This is all referenced to before WotG.

Scaling down old content so new players can get through is not a bad thing. New expansions leave something for mid level players, not that those should exist with easy mode leveling now, to explore and missions and boss fights aimed for 99 players. Personally would like to see the death of zergs. However the player base will find the easiest way to do it. Manaburn, MNK burns, tp burn and zerg.

Edited, Dec 6th 2012 5:26pm by Zymunn
#42 Dec 06 2012 at 4:56 PM Rating: Good
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Quote:
I would love to play casual, as long as the difficulty is still there,


Does not compute
#43 Dec 06 2012 at 4:59 PM Rating: Good
Fynlar wrote:
Quote:
I would love to play casual, as long as the difficulty is still there,


Does not compute


Difficulty=/=Time commitment. At least not exclusively.
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#44 Dec 06 2012 at 5:00 PM Rating: Good
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Quote:
Difficulty=/=Time commitment. At least not exclusively.


I don't see where anything was mentioned about time commitment in what I quoted

Edited, Dec 6th 2012 6:00pm by Fynlar
#45Zymunn, Posted: Dec 06 2012 at 5:06 PM, Rating: Sub-Default, (Expand Post) So the more difficult something is will not make have any impact on time compared to something easy? Leveling has always taken days to reach 75 then? 75 only because it was a huge difference in leveling pre easy mode. I never made 10 levels in 3 hours til the book burns.
#46 Dec 12 2012 at 6:19 PM Rating: Good
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Akihiko Matsui wrote:


Fostering Skillful Play

Hello, Matsui here.

I apologize for the version update delay.

The fix and testing procedures have been completed, so all of the new content, including the new Salvage, will be ready after the maintenance scheduled for 2-4 am tonight (9-11 am PST). Please hang on for a couple more hours. m(_ _)m

Also, I apologize to those of you who have been wondering why I haven’t been posting on the forums this week. I felt that there was a lot of discussion going on about the version update and thought it would be best not to bring up new topics for you to discuss since they could get lost in the midst of the version update.

With that said, I would like to write a bit about my ideas on game play.
(This isn’t very different from the post I made during the FFXIV battle reform. However, I believe this is important information to share with FFXI fans, so I would like to reiterate these points.)
 
I personally believe that game play is nearly synonymous with fostering skillful play.

Without different levels of skill involved, a game isn’t really a game, and I believe that a major factor in the enjoyment of playing games is being rewarded for playing at a high level of skill. (Although it may be more difficult to explain the fun of finishing off collections or completing specific tasks.)

The joy felt when defeating a very strong enemy or completing content that is considered challenging is proportionate to how strong the enemy was or how difficult the content was.

However, I don’t believe that this is the only aspect of fostering skillful play.

In addition to things like being able to perfectly time the stun of an enemy's powerful ability, there are many different levels and ways in which users have foster skillful play. You need to gather equipment and meds, know the right farming spots for your parties, and various other aspects.

Looking from this point of view at the recent FFXI, I feel that the varieties of fostering skillful play are becoming too skewed.

For all of you who love and enjoy playing FFXI, I would like increase the ways you experience the joy of being rewarded for playing well. That said, we will be adding a variety of ways to foster skillful play and we’ll also be making adjustments.

We will strive to improve the game so that users can continue to love FFXI and make lasting memories.

Thank you and best regards.

P.S.
From tomorrow, I need to focus on posts related to version updates.
I have been looking over all of the other hot topics and spoken with the rest of the development team members so that we can respond; however, I would like to make the priority threads related to the version update for now. Thanks for your understanding.


http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxi/threads/29238-Fostering-Skillful-Play?p=386244#post386244
#47 Dec 12 2012 at 9:15 PM Rating: Good
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Zymunn wrote:
Quote:
Difficulty=/=Time commitment. At least not exclusively.


So the more difficult something is will not make have any impact on time compared to something easy? Leveling has always taken days to reach 75 then? 75 only because it was a huge difference in leveling pre easy mode. I never made 10 levels in 3 hours til the book burns.


Really? Leveling hasn't been hard since shortly after launch when no one knew what the **** was going on. The hardest part of leveling and endgame was finding a 5-17 other people that had half a brain. How about sky was kirin as hard on the 100th time your LS killed it or had it gotten to point you could do it in your sleep?
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#48 Dec 13 2012 at 10:31 AM Rating: Excellent
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TheBarrister wrote:
This is great, but I'm not sure about the point regarding a lack of low-difficulty and casual content. This is pretty much all that is in the game with the exception of maybe Legion and NNI.

I'm with Barrister on this one. They've been adding a bit more difficult content but it's difficult in all the wrong ways. Rather than making things difficult but possible to fight, to where it pushes players' sustainability like the old days, newer "hard" content is just so hard you can't fight them straight-up and have to make DD parties where you rotate in two bards and two corsairs just to give them enough buffs to be able to kill the thing before it wipes everyone with its insta-kill TP moves.
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#49 Dec 13 2012 at 11:18 AM Rating: Decent
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...which is precisely why they're nerfing the two abilities that forced them to design such content in the first place. Cheers to Matsui; there's still a ways to go, but so far, so good.
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#50 Dec 13 2012 at 11:24 AM Rating: Decent
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LyltiaofLakshmi wrote:
...which is precisely why they're nerfing the two abilities that forced them to design such content in the first place. Cheers to Matsui; there's still a ways to go, but so far, so good.


So when the next crutch comes along its ok to nerf that? and the next one after that? You supported the Blood Weapon Nerf I am sure? I mean we only used that strategy on nearly every boss we fought for a good 5 years before it was deemed unintentional after AV was being BW zerged.

This style of content has been implemented long before Embrava, you just missed it because you were in abyssea being invincible.
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#51 Dec 13 2012 at 11:27 AM Rating: Good
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Blood weapon was nerfed?
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