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This isn't really a full review of FFXIV, it's more or less my thoughts/feelings about the game after playing a number of characters into their early 20's.
The game sends me mixed messages. At time's I've had a lot of fun, notably with the personal story, the world looks great. Plenty of eye candy (which isn't a bad thing)
On the other hand up the level 20 the game is ridiculously easy, especially the dungeons, to the point I would call them boring. Now I'm very aware (and so should you) that this probably doesn't represent end game (I would hope not!!) but the three first dungeons you are introduced to were all fairly similar, nothing overly hard about any of them. The loot system is a bit bland also.
My biggest problem with the dungeons is that they don't really require group cohesion - You apply in duty finder, when a group is put together (2 DPS, 1 tank, 1 healer) you enter the dungeon. Most the time no one in the group spoke, we simply didn't need to. The dungeons were so simple you didn't really need to communicate with eachother. I was hoping for more of a coordination feel to the dungeons.
Another frustrating aspect of this is that unless you are a healer, you can literally spend hours in the duty finder waiting to run a dungeon. In my opinion they should have introduced two healing classes early on in the game rather than one.
I've found many areas to be over-crowded with slow spawns where everyone is fighting for the one or two spawns in the area to complete quest, whoever tags the mob first gets the xp - this to me makes no sense and anyone who tags a mob and does 10% dmg or so should get partial credit at least - something like GW2 did.
Healing - this has gotta be my biggest complaint. Initially I rolled a conjurer (the cleric class of FFXIV) - I usually enjoy playing healers - not the case here. Aside from Everquest 1, this was the most boring, non-intuitive class I've ever played in any MMO. I literally floated from lvl 1-23 by using two skills over and over. In dungeons all I did was watch skill bars and press cure every few seconds. I was literally able to do school work while running a dungeon - it was very poorly done.
That said, I really enjoyed the Pug (monk) class.
Anyway, everyone has their own thoughts and feelings about the game- is it awful? No...the early release experience has been down right horrid at times because of server issues the game certainly isn't terrible.
Is it great? No, it's not great either - at times the combat is very slow and dull, quest are the same things you've been seeing for the past decade. I would give the game a 6/10 score...I was really hoping for more out of the group content but the dungeons and the quick instances are all pretty lame up to level 20, and there is literally no reason to repeat them.
Will I continue to play it? Probably - There is still two more classes I want to try, so I will probably give it a go and see how it feels.