idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
The unfortunate thing about FFXI was that it was almost entirely about endgame. There were story missions that you could do, but they almost always required you to harass people who had already done them. It was quite a bit of hassle, but somehow its playerbase made up for it.
I flat out disagree. Endgame was a WAY smaller fraction of the game than in any other MMO I have seen on the market. I played for years, and knew many other players, all of whom had never gotten a job to level 75.
Because leveling was a significant part of the game, because making gil actually took extensive time and effort, and because a single character could level every job/craft. And all the mission content was spread across level brackets.
If all you cared about was one job, then yeah--endgame is pretty much all that's left for you besides leveling subjobs. But that's on you, not on the game. The same would apply to TOR. TOR, as of right now at least, is NOT about endgame. But if all you want to do is play a Jedi Sentinel and only see the leveling experience as a means to an end, then there's not much else for you but endgame.
The problem I have with your viewpoint is that you're considering leveling content in regards to FFXI, when it wasn't. Yes, leveling was a significant portion of your time when playing FFXI but there was no underlying push either due to story (like TOR) or rewards (WoW\LotRO\etc.). Put bluntly, SE put the absolute minimum effort into the leveling process for *years* until the FoV/GoV/Abyssea system came into play.
The fact that making money was purposely separated from the leveling process is a serious design flaw. There's no other way to splice it. It was decided to split them in order to get players to have to play longer to achieve even the most minor goals (i.e. artificial timesink).
And while the whole "One character can be all classes" is a really neat choice and has a lot of pros, it ultimately lead to the complete laziness and bi-polarity of FFXI. "Ok, this endgame event/mission is mainly geared towards A1 tanks and B1 DD, but this one almost requires A2+A3 tanks and B4-6 DD." Yes, a small fraction of that might have been because of the players themselves, but ultimately the "freedom" of the JOB/SUB lead to strict requirements and expecting people to play classes they may seriously hate just so they can even go to events.
Yet, still, none of this is content
So, he's still originally correct -- FFXI was nothing but a few missions and endgame no matter how you slice it. Leveling in FFXI didn't get you this incredible story woven throughout your entire experience on every single class; it was filler/busywork to mask how very little there really was to do. This is especially true in the first 5-6 years of the game when everything had massive lockouts (across the server mind you) and extensive respawn timers.
That having been said, Viertel and Velata from Asura. I quit because I refuse to give any more money to a company that so clearly views Abyssea, what the playerbase as a general whole views as a smashing hit and breathed new life into the game, a failure solely on the point because people enjoyed it. SE has proven, time and again, the old adage of "Better to close your mouth and let people think you're a fool, then to open your mouth and remove all doubts."