FFXI: catch all

Is anybody still playing Final Fantasy XI? I still play (off and on since 2003) and I'm enjoying the changes they made to make the game more accessible. Still quite active; I'm on Carbuncle and I see 1500-2500 players on at once.

Also the new expansion Seekers of Adoulin will be out in about a month; introducing 2 new jobs. Can't wait, although I don't have a huge interest in the jobs as much as the new areas. Expansion details from BG wiki:

The fifth full expansion for Final Fantasy XI and is currently in development for all three supported platforms (although the Playstation 2 version will not be released outside of Japan). In the United States and Europe, the PC version will be released as a digital download while the Xbox 360 version will be released on disc. Both versions of the game will be released in two formats: the FINAL FANTASY® XI: Seekers of Adoulin™ expansion pack and the FINAL FANTASY® XI: Ultimate Collection Seekers Edition which will also include the base game software and all previous expansion packs and scenarios.
Prior to the game's reveal, in spring of 2012 portions of new areas from this upcoming expansion were discovered in the test server data files. Square Enix registered the trademark for "Seekers of Adoulin," and the European translations of that title less than a day prior to the start of Vana'fest 2012. The title was officially revealed at Vana'fest on June 23, 2012 with additional game information, a new trailer, and a confirmed release date unveiled on December 27, 2012. Seekers of Adoulin will go on sale on March 26, 2013 worldwide with expansion content becoming unlocked and accessible the following day.

In this expansion, adventurers will travel west to the Ulbuka Continent and the island city of Adoulin, with much of the focus being claiming the unexplored wilderness, specifically the vast, untamed jungle, outside of the city and discovering more about the planet's geomagnetic fields. A new type of guild system will be different from the crafting guilds already in the game with coalitions for various fields such as exploration and information. Players will also be able to unlock new content and bonuses by participating in regional affairs, such as clearing paths and building outposts that will allow teleportation, and by conquering the strongholds of the seven tribes of enemies and their native warlords known as the Naakuals through the "Colonization" system. In addition, each player will receive their own small island in the archipelago to the east of the Ulbuka mainland. This will serve as an area where players can perform unique tasks such as raise groups of monsters to harvest synthesis materials.
Two new jobs will be added in the expansion: Geomancer and Rune Fencer. Geomancer is an offensive and support mage hybrid class specializing in using geomancy to enhance areas of terrain ("Geocolure") or the area around themselves ("Indicolure") to provide unique bonuses to players within that area and Luopans to create areas of terrain which debuff any foes in range. Geomancers will use "handbells," a new type of instrument that increases the power of geomancy spells. They will also have access to a variety of Elemental Magic spells such as tier I-IV elemental nukes and the all new line of "-ra" spells which, with "Cardinal Chant," can be enhanced in various ways depending on the compass alignment of the player's and target's relative positions. Rune Fencer is a melee and tank hybrid class specializing in utilizing Rune Enchantment and other related abilities to enhance their offensive capabilities (primarily with Great Swords) as well as their magic defense and resistances for individual elements. They will have access to a variety of Enhancing Magic spells including Protect and Shell, Regen, and Spikes spells.
The 15 new areas added across the Ulbuka continent will include, among others, the city hub of Adoulin, the underground Rala Waterways, the jungles and beaches of the Yahse Hunting Grounds and Ceizak Battlegrounds, the harsh and contaminated Foret de Hennetiel, and the mysterious Sih and Moh Gates. Seekers of Adoulin will also introduce many varied new types of monsters including the Velkk (a new beastmen tribe) and the Naakuals (warlords of the seven monster tribes).

I'm Zenoxio on Carbuncle, if anyone is looking to join.

I just saw that Amazon has the Ultimate Seeker's Edition (the game + all current expansions) for $40- is it worth picking up at this point for a newcomer? I had several friends who were constantly hyping it back in the mid 00's and I've always been curious, but despite my love of both MMO's and the FF franchise somehow this is the only major MMO in the last 13 years I haven't touched. I realize that being an older game it's going to be a bit rough around the edges, but I still revisit Anarchy Online periodically so I'm capable of handling a bit of clunkiness.
So, yay or nay?

ruhk wrote:

I just saw that Amazon has the Ultimate Seeker's Edition (the game + all current expansions) for $40- is it worth picking up at this point for a newcomer? I had several friends who were constantly hyping it back in the mid 00's and I've always been curious, but despite my love of both MMO's and the FF franchise somehow this is the only major MMO in the last 13 years I haven't touched. I realize that being an older game it's going to be a bit rough around the edges, but I still revisit Anarchy Online periodically so I'm capable of handling a bit of clunkiness.
So, yay or nay?

Unless you have a group/linkshell already playing that you can join up with i'd say nay.

I haven't played in a few months (laptop died - gaming laptop BAD! SMASH!!), but I consider FFXI one of the more solo friendly MMOs I've ever played. Leveling is incredibly fast now, the cap raising to 99 made level 75 content trivial and thus accessible to soloers, and there's enough content in Abyssea to keep a new player busy for a long time and Abyssea is very solo/lowman friendly.

In fact, linkshells aren't what they used to be anyway. They released so much pickup friendly content that linkshells aren't as paramount as they used to be (which is a shame, really). Looks like that will change if content keeps getting harder, but time will tell.

I'm actually installing FFXI on my 360 and my new PC at the exact same time right this minute. I've been playing for almost a decade now. I'll probably futz around with it until the day they shut down the servers.