Cobalt's FFXI Impressions

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Cobalt Katze
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Cobalt's FFXI Impressions

Postby Cobalt Katze » 03/17/2003 @ 05:26 PM

First off, I want to credit Una for some of the questions. Thanks man, 'cause I frankly didn't have much to go off of format-wise for how I'd do impressions.. There's SO much to talk about, and only so much time to write with.

Topic one: "How long did it take for you to recieve yours?"

I ordered my copy on a monday afternoon. By the following friday, I was chasing down the mailman because I didn't hear him knock on the door. I ran two blocks through a serious Seattle rain storm, but I avoided waiting an additional day, so it was all good. But to answer the question, it took four days to arrive, mainly because the package shipped directly from Japan to Seattle. However, for you folks living in a more easternly direction, expect one or two more days added to that due to travel time from whatever city it ships to initially. I'm not sure if it boosts the arrival time or not, but I used their EMS or whatever that acronym was so I could check the status of the delivery.. But since it just flew from point A to point B, I think it was a waste of my money *chuckles* Ohwell.

Topic two: "Katakana keeping you down?"

There's two answers I can give. The first one is if you don't have a translation by your side. You will get confused. You will look at all this text and say "oh my god there's so much I don't understand." However, all is not lost! Here comes answer number two: If you have people to help you out, or a translation guide of some sort, the game suddenly makes alot more sense. Eventually, since you use menus alot, you will memorize what does what, and I think if you play for a solid few days with help, by your third or fourth day you should be able to pick out not only what menu option does what without assistance, you might begin to recognize the characters that translate into various english words you know. And if you know someone that understands things better than you, by all means bug 'em about it. I'm sure they'll understand your dilemma unless they're some prick that knows japanese backwards and forwards and therefor didn't have to suffer like you did.. um, yeah. But that's all I have to say on that subject.

Topic three: "What race/class did you pick?"

Ahhh, the heated debate of race and classes.

Here comes a long drawn out series of paragraphs, so grab some popcorn and stay a while, ne?

Races.. Personally, I was debating between a Male Elvaan or a Mithra. The Elvaan with orange hair was my fave, and so originally I made him and made my character in SanDoria..

Here's an important note that not many people have touched upon: </b>The character you make in the Character Creation sequence, and the actual character model you play with are <i>two completely different models</i></b>. That is to say.. think of the Character Creation kind of like shopping at a toy store. You find an action figure you think looks really awesome, but you didn't notice a little disclaimer on the box that said "Actual contents and colors may vary." This is exactly the case with the character models in FFXI. And this isn't to say that the in-game models aren't absolutely beautiful! They are! It's just they're a lot different, mainly in the case of Elvaan Males.

Basically, I created my character only to find out his arms were incredibly lanky, his neck was huge, and he just didn't look like Cobalt.

So I went back to the main screen, chose to delete my character, and started over again. This time I went with my second choice, Mithra. Originally I had picked out one with red hair in a high ponytail, but in-game she didn't really look as cool as I'd hoped. Third try creating my character (note that since the game does have a storyline, you need to sit through an opening cutscene of sorts after creating your character.), and I realized the whole "colors may vary" thing, so I was daring and chose a Mithra with cool markings, but with brown hair. Sure enough, once I saw my character in the actual game, she had orange hair and it looked perfect for a Cobalt character, despite the female attributes.

To end my thing about races, here's the part that actually matters gameplay-wise. With their inital stats, this is how the races are balenced: Humes are typical well-rounded characters, because obviously humans are for some reason in any game. Elvaan are more suited for warrior positions. And on a personal remark, due to their long arms I can say they'd be great for wielding a sword. Tarutarus, the little dudes, are excelent magic-users, though it's funny how many cute little warriors I've seen running around. Mithra are obviously very quick and are best for either being a thief or magic user. And those big Galka guys are your staple RAcasts of the group, though they excel at beating the crap out of people with the monk class.

This is not to say that any race can't be a certain class.. It's just they lean in certain directions depending on their starting stats. Oh, last thing about races. Depending on what country you start them out in, certain races will get lovely little rings that boost your stats a bit. Hume and Galka hang out in Bastok, Elvaan meander in SanDoria, Tarutaru and Mithra chill in Windurst.

Now, about those lovely jobs. There are five starter jobs. (If you want to be a mage, it helps if you know the various color kanji characters, as the three names are similar.) Warrior, Black Mage, White Mage, Red Mage, Monk, and Thief.

Warriors are your big buff weapons-fighters. They have a nice assortment of weapons. Generally you'll see people running around with 1H swords, Cloud-style 2H swords that are taller than you are, Spears ala dragoons, Scythes for those future evil people, or if you're feeling unique a 1H or 2H Axe. (Not too many people use them.)

Black Mages (pointy hat optional) are obviously the attack-magic users. They primarly wield various rods, obviously. A usual attack pattern I've seen low-level blackmages use is to cast a spell from a distance to open the attack, then attempt to beat the enemy senseless afterwards. Black mages can get extremely powerful though, as they are able to deal big chunks of damage later on enabling them to defeat more powerful monsters earlier on.

White Mages, well, you know what they are. They heal, revive, cure ailments, attack with holy. I havn't seen too many of them soloing, frankly. A common practice is to use White Mage as a subjob so you can still kick ass but heal when needed.

Red Mages can dish out up to mid-level white or black magic, wield swords, and on another personal note they are the only job that can wear cool-looking pants... *envy.*

Monks are big buff fighting machines, very unlike any Buddhist Monk you'll run across. I personally don't know any, and havn't experienced the job yet, so I can't really come up with any good impressions. But from what I saw of n00b monks training, it looks like they get lots of nice flashy things to do. Bare fists and knuckles are abundant for monk weaponry.

Thieves! (my job, yay) I absolutely love the thief class. Much to my surprise, they actually have more of a variety in weaponry than I initially thought. Not only can they wield the typical knife and shield combo, they can also use short swords and the very cool claws. They're personally my fave weapon of the bunch, as while your attack speed might suffer in comparason to a dagger, you'll get two attacks in a row once you do attack. Later on, thieves learn some very cool skills as well, such as the ability to cloak yourself from enemy sight, or to increase your speed doubly, allowing mass-destruction.. I have yet to get these skills yet, as I'm only level 7, but I'm lookin' forward to 'em :D

That ends my first entry of impressions. Coming up soon will be my assumed impressions of the second set of jobs, the importance of weapon choice due to Weapon Skills, and more..! (I sound like a commercial, ergh..)

If you have any specific questions you want me to answer, PM me and I'll do the best I can at answering 'em :3
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Postby unastrike » 03/17/2003 @ 06:09 PM

Coolio, yo. Thanks, Cobbi. Although I'm already solid gold on this game, I'm still a little aprehensive about navigating in it. You've set my mind at ease, but made me thirst for this game that much more.thanks for that. :P

I ordered mine this past Friday night/Saturday morn so I'm keeping my fingers crossed for Friday even though I have to work this weekend and won't get much game time in.

I'm really looking forward to duking it out with some baddies with a Monk. I'm also partial to the Thief class... I may just have one for a secondary char.

I've got some additional Qs for ya, too.

How generous are drops? Gold and item wise. I've heard that money is something that isn't really abundant (as with nearly every MMORPG), but is there enough to keep a party partying together?

Map system? I've seen an overhead map that you can pull up that will display various locales... but will it also show your party members' locations?

Are the initial quests that are available suited for solo or group? Like, is it better to go on a few quests when you first start out as opposed to jumping right into a party?

Keep us posted, man. I wanna hear it all. :D :thumbup

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Postby Cobalt Katze » 03/17/2003 @ 10:31 PM

Since I've got some nice questions to answer, I'll just utilize those so I won't rant on about things you've probably already heard <^^>

"How generous are drops?"

I would probably have to say just as much as most other MMORPGs. The basic premise is this: For your normal drops, enemies will only drop what makes sense. Rabbits will not drop gold nor will they drop eggs.. obviously, on the egg part. However, they will drop skin and raw meat. Bees can drop stamens, or honey.. makes sense. Let's say you're going up against a goblin fisherman. You can sometimes get fishing rods from them, and since they carry gold you will get a small sum once beating them. That's really how it works. Animals give you parts of their body, and reletively civilized creatures will give you money plus possible equipment items.

The second catagory of drops are crystals. You can find some rarely under normal circumstances, but you are most likely to find them by getting a guard, usually with two letters following its name to cast Signet on you. Just talk to him/her and choose the top option. Once you have Signet, it will last for quite a while, and you'll be able to find crystals very commonly from enemies. There are 8 types of crystals, each associated with an element. Four are reletively common: (since I completely forget the elements, I'll name the colors) red, darkblue, green, and yellow. The other four are more rare: purple, white, black, and I'm not certain as to the last color. Once you reach Rank 2 in your home city, you can cash these in to the gate guard in order to raise your status within society. However, until you reach Rank 2 you can sell them to merchants for some gil. Selling crystals will be your main source of income for the first five or six levels. Common ones sell for 14 gil in shops, and rare ones for around 20-somthing I think.

Oh, and a note about the drops. They will go straight to your inventory. That means absolutely no looting, folks. In fact, nothing is ever dropped onto the ground so there's no way anyone can steal somthing from you.

Kill stealing is also nonexistant in this game. Once you begin solo-attacking somthing, it becomes locked, meaning no one else attack it. However, if you want assistance, you can call for help by selecting the second from last option in the battle menu. This will turn the enemy's name Orange and lets people know you need help. If this is the case, no one will get experience from the battle.. but atleast you lived! Dying can be a tad devistating to your exp, so living is always the best option. Also, if you're in a party, obviously anyone in your party can attack what you're attacking.

Now back on item distribution.. For parties, it essentially works like this: The party leader can access a menu that allows for distribution of items amongst party members. If they don't do anything, no one will get anything, so it's important that a party leader knows how to distribute the goods. And from what I can tell, parties seem to get more drops than normal due to multiple members beating things down. So essentially, have a party leader you can trust.

"Map system?"

Basically wherever you start out, you will get all the basic maps of your country and its surrounding areas. Your can bring these up by either typing "/map" or by going to the main menu and selecting the bottom option "Mappu." These maps will show your position, but unfortunately not your party member's positions. And you need to stop moving once you bring up a map. However, there's another kind of "map" in the lower right corner of your screen. You'll get a nice lil compass with your generic N-S W-E crosshairs. Also on it you'll get many little colored dots that represent certain things. Green dots are NPCs, Blue dots are other players, Red dots are enemies. The same applies to the text that appears over everyone's heads.

"initial quests that are available suited for solo or group?"

Well, like many questions so far, there are two answers. It all depends on when you want to accomplish the quest. Initially, at level 1, you are about as powerful as a rabbit. I would say level 5 is a good level to do your country's Mission 1 solo-style. Mission 2 probably won't be solo-friendly until after level 10 or so, so if you're really antsy to do it, I'd say go with a party that has a nice white mage.

I suppose I need to explain the mission system now don't I..

Well, each country has its own set of storyline-driven missions. They are set up into groupings of three. After you complete the first three missions, you will become Rank 1 and be able to trade in crystals to bring up your status even more. Several other things require level or rank requirements.

For example, you can't ride an airship until you either A) Buy an airship pass for 200,000 Gil... which is damn expensive. Or B) Complete (I forget at the moment which it is) either Mission 5, or obtain Rank 5.. Either way, five is the magical number for airship riding.

Somewhat related are chocobos. You can't begin the quest to be able to rent a chocobo untill you're atleast level 20. Then you'll have access to a quest in Jeuno that takes 6 in-game days to accomplish that will allow you to rent chocobos. Much fun.

That's all for now! Perhaps, if anyone's curious, next time I'll get into functions of the Auction House, a briliant little invention for the FFXI world.
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Postby Reaper » 03/17/2003 @ 11:12 PM

One thing you didnt touch on, or maybe i missed.
anyway how do you interact with other players? or do you just solo?
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Postby Exodia5 » 03/17/2003 @ 11:57 PM

I've got a question. I really want to get this game as I am tired of waiting for it to come out in the states, but I speak VERY little Japanese and read even less (One reason I really want a Japanese class but thats another story :frust ) Do you think it would be possible for me to get the game and be able to play it with any kind of enjoyment?

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Postby Cobalt Katze » 03/18/2003 @ 02:05 AM

The answer for both your questions is simple: I got associated with a nice group of english-speaking FFXI players. They bought me a World Pass on their server and I joined their linkshell. There's a good many players in it, all of which are importers. So Reaper, there's your answer. And Exodia, if you too find a group of people to hang out with then yes, it's incredibly fun as I don't know much japanese at all either, but I'm learning rapidly. FFXI is a great opportunity to learn hands-on style.
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Postby Cobalt Katze » 03/18/2003 @ 01:16 PM

I appologize for double-posting, but here comes round three of my impressions and explanations for fellow importers. (IAEFI!)

Topic o' the day: Auction Houses.

If you're a rabid FF player, you'll probably recognize the concept of an Auction House from FF9, or FFIX for you roman peepls. It's somewhat like that concept here, except not really.. Essentially there is an Auction House in every major town. Players can put their items into the 'house and set a hidden price that they feel is about right (You can also check the auction history to find a price that has been commonly used.) This is where the description splits up:

<b>For those buying from the AH-</b>

Go to the auction counter and select the top button in the menu that pops up. That's Buy. You'll then be given a list of various types of things to buy. You'll mainly be concerning yourself with Weapons (the top) and Armor (the second.) But there's also sections for grocerys to eat and furnature for your house. You'll then have yet another list. These are either weapon types or armor types if you chose the first two options. Go ahead and just check all of them; it's pretty easy to figure out, because once you click on a type, you'll get a list of all the items for sale in their specific catagories complete with little pictures. (Thank you Square for those pictures!) One thing to note about equipment in general: Write down the first character that appears in your job name. For example, for thief the japanese is Shi~fu.. So if the equipment desctription does not have "Shi" in it, you can't equip it.. The same goes for other classes. And my mistake by the way earlier.. It's Monks that are the only class that can equip the cool-looking pants. Once you click on an item, you'll get three options: The first one is to check the Auction History for that item. You'll get a good idea of how much the person might be selling it for. It might be less, so if you feel lucky try paying less. The second option is buy. You then set your price, and if you guessed the right price or above, you'll get the item and pay your gil. If not, you won't pay anything and you won't get the item.. It makes sense!

<b>For those that are selling-</b>

It's very simple, really. When given the initial AH menu, select the second option. This will bring up your inventory and you can select any item that's not equipped to put into the 'house. You'll have to select twice, as it'll give you an "are you sure?" opportunity. You'll then be able to set a price. If you don't want anyone to buy your item, set a riddiculous price.. j/k. Nah, if you really want someone to buy, either set the price most common to the item (You can do this by checking the prices of items peepls are selling.), or you can set a price below it if you're feeling generous and want to give some lucky person a bargain. If you're selling for friends, you can tell 'em about the item and set a low price.. But you can also send it directly to their Mog House.. But I'll get into that in a later post.

Once you put an item up for selling is when the third option in the main AH menu comes into play. Select this to check up on all your items on the auction block. If their names are green, that means they havn't sold yet.. But if they're yellow..! Woohoo! You just made some cash. But not yet. Click on the item to let the AH know you want your money. Then you can head home to your Mog House. Once there, select the second option on the MH menu (This is your mailbox. Friends can send you items or money and it'll go here.) You should see a little golden coin icon in the box. Click on it, and you got money!

This concludes my AH impressions. It's a beautiful thing, people <o.o>
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Postby unastrike » 03/18/2003 @ 02:39 PM

Wow... I really like the idea of the Auction House! I didn't actually think that it was that... open. That's really cool.

Hey, Cobbi. You might want to start getting that WP ready! :P :D

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Postby Reaper » 03/18/2003 @ 02:56 PM

i think the bazar in EQ is the best player selling sytem,
any way im ganna go ahead and import this, especialy since galaxies got delayed again! :wah

could you post the link to the site you baught it from cobalt?

edit: Here ya go, Reap. http://shop.himeya.com/
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Postby Exodia5 » 03/18/2003 @ 04:56 PM

Ok thanks for your help I'll guess I'll import it and hope to get lucky lol :D but if not I can always solo :roll

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Postby Cobalt Katze » 03/18/2003 @ 05:25 PM

Speaking of Bazaar, here's a quick rundown of the Bazaar system in FFXI.

Okay, don't smite me if I get certain things wrong, but I havn't personally tried it yet, but this is how it works:

Essentially, every character in this game can be like a Merchant from RO. You can load up a little bag filled with goodies, set your price, and a brown bag will appear next to your name. If a character selects you and chooses the Bazaar option, they'll be able to browse the items you have up for selling and just buy one if they want to. You'll probably see a bunch of scantly-clad characters hanging around the Auction House selling things while they're AFK. But the best part is that you can have the Bazaar open 24/7, so even while you're out battling you can have people walk up to you and buy somthing. I can imagine it would be quite useful.

Once I actually inquire about the system more, I'll update with a better-explained version of how this works.
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Postby Reaper » 03/18/2003 @ 07:35 PM

You think you could give me the link to the place you ordered form?
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Postby unastrike » 03/18/2003 @ 07:44 PM

Check your post again, genius. :roll :P

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Postby Reaper » 03/18/2003 @ 07:54 PM

lol how the hell was i suposed to know it was edited into my post :roll
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Postby unastrike » 03/18/2003 @ 10:49 PM

There we go... I made it bigger for you. :P

Hey, Cobbi... maybe you can confirm this. Are you only allowed to use the World Pass upon character creation? That's what I've been reading lately. I mean, it makes sense, but still kind of sucks. Guess Ragnarok is outta the question now... unless, of course, the Bahamut server is pretty cool, too.

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Postby Reaper » 03/18/2003 @ 10:55 PM

does the aforementioned way to choose servers still work?
yes no maybe?
cause if it still workes id like to get on the server you guys are ganna be on
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Postby unastrike » 03/18/2003 @ 11:02 PM

Nope. From what I've heard, Square has fixed the "problem". Only way to get the server you want is to have dumb luck when the initial server is randomly chosen for you or to get a WP from a player that's already on that server.

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Postby RuneLateralus » 03/19/2003 @ 12:54 AM

Well, that is about ready to kill my interest into importing the game. If I was going to play, I need some insurance that I can play with you guys.

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Postby Miles » 03/19/2003 @ 01:31 AM

Cobbi, i just recently updated my PC good enough to play ff11, ive been looking for nodachi, but he's been gone for quite sometime. If its possible, private message me or give me a mail. Im really anxious to get into this world without much frustration, and am hoping you or Noda could be of some help. Thanks in advance.
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Postby Cobalt Katze » 03/19/2003 @ 02:30 AM

No prob Miles~

And Rune, I already said there's a sure-fire way.. Getting a World Pass.

As soon as the first person's copy reaches them, I will buy the World Pass. This will allow 5 people to join Bahamut when creating their characters for one week. If some people come afterwards, I'll try my best to get another one. I want everyone on the same server so we can perhaps create a Linkshell (a guild) and help eachother out.

And don't worry Una, Bahamut kicks ass. Plenty of english-speaking people, and it's very lively seeing as it was the very first server, including back in beta.

If you want to be in the first wave of people to get in with the World Pass, make sure you have the game within a few weeks from now, and feel free to give me a PM or IM me at Cobalt Katze on AiM.
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