As one of the `lucky` people to attend the July 30th Square Enix Party 2005 event (notice the intended sarcasm; I bought the ticket just under a week ago and there were LOADS to spare everywhere) I thus had a chance to stand in line and play Final Fantasy XII.
First off, the booth was quite generic. A gigantic white mini building with the FFXII name and logo and a large TV screen projecting various movies on a loop. Once you got inside the main door, you could watch footage of the new demo as well as hear instructions on how to play it. After that, it was onto the back room where there were some 200 stations where visitors got to play for 10 minutes straight.
There were two demos avalible, one with Vaan, Bosche, and Panello on a beach type area, the other with Ashe, Balfear and Fran in a tomb type area. I played both obviously; and in my second time (after waiting in the line later on as there was nothing else to do there) completed Ashe`s section in about 4 minutes.
First off, I am sorry to say that I quite dislike the game. Those of you who have been on this board for a LONG time may remember my commentairy along these lines and it still holds true. You really have no control over the characters, rather you give `suggestions` and the AI carries it out for you. To be quite blunt, it is like playing Final Fantasy 11 only offline. The EXACT same type of gameplay, and the EXACT same type of environments and whatnot.
That is part of what disappointed me the most; that the game doesn`t feel like a FF title at all. It feels like Final Fantasy 11. Everything from the way you target things to the auto attacking to the massive environments scream MMORPG and thus I have to wonder what the hell is taking Square so damn long to rehash a game it made some 5 years ago now. When you fight this MASSIVE turtle monster to obtain a key to the boss room in Ashe`s scenario, it just screams FFXI; you know, one of those massive monsters that you need an entire clan to kill.
Musically (or at least what could be heard from the poor headphones you had to put on at the game station) the game sounded generic; just like FFXI really. The sound effects were quite good, but I wonder if anyone even cares.
Summon monsters (which seems to be one of the two big announcements made) act just like they did in FFX: you summon one after meeting a requirement and it takes the place of the 2 PCs not controlled by you. It has a life bar and a time limit, so it can be killed or else leave. The demo summon had extremely powerful attacks, and even acted on AI itself as it healed me (Vaan) once.
Other than that, I have nothing much else to add...anyone expecting something great may find themselves disappointed. This really is Final Fantasy XI: Offline I am afraid. Though I will say that UNLIKE Dirge of Cerebus (which was quite possibly the most unpolished and poorly executed game I have ever played) FFXII did have a certain charm to it.
Anyone who wants to hear more can feel free to ask questions.
First off, anyone who knows who I am can esentially tell you I am anything but a troll. Not everyone will like everything. Believe me, I was QUITE surprised to dislike FFXII so much; it was the single reason why I went to this silly convention in the first place.
Anyway, with respect to the character issue; when you bring up the active command window (with the circle button IIRC) you can use the L and R buttons (or was it the left and right D-Pad buttons...) to issue a command for a different party member; just like with Seiken Densetsu games. Furthermore, pushing down on the D Pad lets you literally control a different character (i.e. make them the lead character).
As for there being something `wrong` with the game being similar to FFXI, I did not mean that in an entirely bad way, but one of the many criticisms people have about said game (or MMORPGs in general) is that you do not have direct control over your character. With FFXII, you issue a command for the battle, and then your leader character waits until his or her WAIT gauge fills up and then initiates it. They will continue to do that until the monster dies, until they do, until they run out of MP, or until you issue a new command. To me, it feels stupid running around waiting for the gauge to fill up doing nothing.
For someone who has never played FFXI before, XII will be a real surprise, but not necessairly in a good way. Having only played the formal FF installments before, you could find the game quite disappointing just as well...or not.
On a side note, the graphics were only midly above average really; Grandia 3 just blows them out of the water, hands down
bhe, da quel che leggo traspare una forte delusione per questo FF XII.
Senza star li a tradurre tutto, in pratica dice che:
- ha provato 2 demo con 3 personaggi diversi per ogni demo e la seconda con Ashe addirittura finita in 4 minuti
- il punto focale di tutte le sue impressioni è questo: FFXII è come giocare FFXI offline. Lo stesso gameplay, gli stessi ambienti, lo stesso tipo di targeting, alla'auto attacco etc
- si ha l'impressione di non avere assolutamente il controllo vero del pg, dove tu semplicemente gli suggerisci un comando o lui lo esegue per te
- non sembra essere un vero FF, ma più un FFXI
- le musiche sembrano anonime ( ma dagli speaker penosi magari non si sentiva bene ), esattamente come in FFXI
- i summon sono esattamente come in FFX con la bar limit, prende posto delsecond pg etc. Nella demo il summon aveva attacchi molto potenti
- non ha molto altro da aggiungere, se non che che si aspetta un grande gioco può rimanere deluso
Poi ci sono altri commenti che richiamano tutti FFXI, tra cui quello in cui tu dai un qualsivolgia comando ed il pg aspetta che la sua barra wait si riempia del tutto e poi esegue. Questo è stupido perchè capita di correre in tondo a vuoto in attesa che si riempia.
Poi conclude dicendo che la grafica della demo è appena nella media e che grandia 3 lo massacra nettamente
Quindi se e' cosi' che vadano a cagare. 5 anni per un titolo nella media?
Mi sa che la saga di final fantasy sta alla frutta 8( piango.