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The rigidity of FFXIV - Why do people defend this?

First let me start off by clarifying that I do not intend to put down this game or its developers with this thread, for if anything this has more to do with the community. There's just no doubting that the design choice of this game's gameplay is extremely rigid, which in many ways cause numerous amounts of issues.

 

Let's talk about the combat system. And no, this has nothing to do with the holy trinity. This is the actual gameplay in its purest form. There's no physics, no open world, no vehicles, no collision, etc. The very basics of this game literally comes down to basic horizontal movement, math, positioning, and reaction/timing ( and before anybody says it; coordination is not a combat system element, its a multiplayer element and does not fall under this paragraph's topic ). So what you have is your standard tab-targeting combat. Which is fine in my opinion, I loved the hell out of FF12's combat.

 

But what does this mean from a community standpoint? Well the more rigid the gameplay, the more solidified people's opinions on what you should be doing in the video game. Solidified opinions become standardized expectations. Press 1 out of 30 buttons in the incorrect order and/or at the incorrect time of the fight and you are instantly labeled a bad player. Arguments arise over how you shouldn't be telling other people how to play the game, people ragequit the instance, etc etc, just the typical nonsense you see in duty finder. My point is, you have to play the game in a very specific way, usually in a way established by the community.

 

I'm very sorry, I've devoted a great amount of effort to refrain from using the following game as an example, but I cannot think of a better way to get my point across. In GTA online, there is a heist called The Prison Break. The objective is to get the client out of prison and the country itself. It requires one team of 4 players. 2 people pose as inmates and a prison guard and fight their way through the prison once inside. 1 guy flies an escape plane, and 1 guy steals a prison bus en route, blows it up, then steals a military helicopter to protect the plane. Usually the 2 players in the prison fight their way through and then steal an armored truck to escape. However, in one session I was in, the 2 people at the prison were not skilled enough to fight through it, but the airplane pilot was good enough not to be blown up by the fighter jet that was chasing it. So instead, I took the helicopter to the prison to support the ground team, which is extremely risky. The prison has turrets that fires a homing missile every 5 seconds. Shooting at police on the ground while constantly dodging missiles is a very involved job.

 

Now this isn't the same as an adopted strat like solo tanking t9, or a mechanic-bypassing strat like suiciding the royal pentacle in A4S, because it does not save time or effort, and in fact requires more skill and effort of the vehicle pilots then usual. It was literally just another way of completing it. I can make up for the lack of skill of one part of the team by applying my own skill. Which is something you usually can't or won't do in FFXIV. Like, it doesn't matter how good of a tank I am, if 2 dps aren't dodging plumes or whatever and end up dying because of it there's absolutely nothing I can do about it. Being unable to pick up the pieces as they fall, and you just have a bunch of people nerdraging at each other. People start forming cliques, and then get labeled as elitists.

 

Don't get me wrong here; I'm not asking that they should overhaul the game because it's not like GTA or whatever. What I'm saying is that people should be a little less receptive of this game's continuous design. And by a little I mean a lot. I won't go into detail here, but I will say I get quite annoyed when I see people shooting other people down on the forums when they suggest that the devs should start adding things like emergent gameplay and horizontal progression - as if the design of this game is sacred or something. Keep telling the devs that it is okay to keep the game so rigid and it will stay like that for a long time, then you have no one else to blame when the content is the same, que times are long, and/or you're just bored when playing this game.

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