geekgirl101's forum posts

#1 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -

Most likely you will like it.  The graphics are far less cartoony but there is still a certain amount of anime which is standard for Japanese-style games.  There did appear to be something being set up at the start which would suggest to me that there is some kind of a storyline that will eventually unfurl.  I didn't get that far in the game though, I only managed about a dozen levels or so during the free period and then I quit playing because at the time I didn't feel it was worth my money, there wasn't enough players playing and everything seemed either too complicated or too limited that I couldn't get in to it.  Will have to wait and see when ARR is out.

#2 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -

Your best bet is to wait for this to be available either as open beta or retail. I heard that while they're testing ARR they shut down FFXIV, I might be wrong but my guess is they did to prevent themselves from hurting the release of ARR before it even went on market.

From what I saw in FFXIV when I first tested it a couple of years ago I can say that graphics-wise it is absolutely beautiful. The voice acting surprised me more as I've been used to NPCs only ever being silent (like in FFXI) or just saying stuff like Hello, Do you need something? Keep yer feet on the ground! (WOW). It was greatly let down by its crappy engine though and everything was either extremely limited or massively over-complicated. I heard they changed much before they even started on ARR, so if it was already being made better then ARR will (hopefully) make it even more better.

#3 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -

FFXI has changed a lot over the years as result of many expansions.  This particular version only covers the first 3 of them, so I'll try to cover this game as best I can based on the first 3 expansions.  Be warned, this is going to be big.

FFXI was at the time (and sort of still is) one of the most ingenius ideas by SE to create an MMORPG that could be played on the PS2.  In order to achieve this SE had to create a special launcher tool known as PlayOnline which would act as a launcher for FFXI and other online games owned by SE (only 2 games were ever made for it and one got cancelled a few years later) and also to provide chat and messaging facilities similar to applications such as MSN and IRC.  PlayOnline was also used for creating content IDs for character creation, account management, and ingame support.  These days however most of those features were removed from the PlayOnline viewer and transferred to the web-based Square Enix Account Management system, so the PlayOnline viewer is now really just a launcher tool for FFXI with private chat and messaging systems, but in order to use the private chat and messaging systems you have to be logged out of FFXI since they are part of PlayOnline, not FFXI itself.

While it sounded like a cool idea to begin with the fact is most players hate PlayOnline.  It's slow, it's got loads of menus just to get to the FFXI launcher itself, and before you can even begin downloading and installing the patches to play FFXI you have to download and install the patches for PlayOnline.  The downloading and installation process is horribly slow and it must complete to 100% before the game will allow you to log in.  If you get disconnected at any point (which can happen if a lot of players are logging in at once to download updates) then you'll have to start over again.

Once you are finally logged into FFXI and have created your character one of the first things you will notice when you log in is that there is no minimap.  There is a radar which shows which direction you're facing, but it will not tell you where you are.  There are larger world maps that only show you the current area you're in, but these only cover the starter city and region you've chosen to start in.  Maps for areas outside of that region have to be purchased from map vendors (some maps are given via quests or found in coffers but the majority of them are vendor bought.)  This is a heavy burden for new players who are already skint and their first quest only giving a measley 50 gil which isn't even enough to buy a low level item of clothing, spell or weapon.

Another thing you will notice is that almost all quests do not give you any experience points.  Quests and missions are primarily for earning fame, gil and item rewards.  Instead of questing your levels you'll be required to fight monsters, usually in groups with other players.  You can solo your levels but once you get past level 10 it becomes increasingly difficult to solo monsters that give decent experience points.  You will also discover that even though your levels will require more experience points to next level you will not get more experience points from higher level monsters.  A tough monster to a level 1 will give you the same 250 experience points that a tough monster to a level 75 would give, but since a level 75 cannot solo a tough monster then they'll need to team up with others and that 250 experience points will be split among the other players.  If the party is fast enough in downing another monster shortly after they will create a chain which adds an extra 10% experience points earned.  The higher the chain the more experience points can be earned, however the time between chains will get shorter leaving very little time for rests, and the higher the level the monster the longer it takes to kill, resulting in a very slow grind to the next level.

You'll also notice monsters do not have any indication on first glance to what their levels are, nor are you given any hints to whether it is aggressive or not until you come into close contact with it.  To determine the strength of a monster the player must target it and check it.  Monster strengths are labelled as either being Too Weak, Easy Prey, Decent Challenge, Even Match, Tough, Very Tough, Incredibly Tough, or Impossible to Gauge, and each of these may also give an indication of their evasion and defense.  A monster that checks as being Incredibly Tough with high defense and evasion usually means that this monster would be extremely difficult to fight even with a group, it may also be of an exceptionally higher level.  A monster that checks as Impossible to Gauge means it is a rare and special monster known as a Notorious Monster.  Even more powerful Notorious Monsters at level 75 and above are known as HNMs, the "H" has been argued that it stands for Hard, Hyper or Huge, but in the end it means it's not meant to be solo'd.  Upon defeating the Notorious Monster you may get a rare item as a reward.

In addition to earning experience points, gil and items from fighting monsters there is also a rare chance of obtaining a Beastman Seal.  These seals are a special type of currency used in the purchase of orbs that are used to enter one of 3 battlefields known as Burning Circles.  These battlefields are small with a time limit and often with a single objective to destroy all monsters inside them.  Most of them require more than 1 player to enter.  Entering a Burning Circle battlefield (nicknamed BCNM) will temporarily de-level you to the level of the orb you selected on purchase.  Rewards for completing a BCNM may vary from junk to extremely valuable items.  If you leave the BCNM at any time you will not be able to reenter it, and if someone begins fighting before everyone else enters then they will be locked out and unable to enter until the BCNM is either completed or all players have exited.  Using a new orb to reenter will create a new battlefield, so you cannot pick up from where you left off if you did not complete the previous BCNM.  Also if your party wipes and you do not have a means to resurrect safely or you run out of time you will be ejected out of the BCNM and your attempt will be deemed a failure.  You will not be able to reenter a BCNM with the same orb twice even if you failed it.

Fighting monsters in groups at higher levels is much more fun and efficient than solo since you can kill mobs much faster, chain them, and if you time your TP abilities and match their elements you can create some colourful effects called Skillchains which can do some pretty awesome damage.  A mage who casts a spell that matches the element of the skillchain can also increase their own damage, resulting in a Magic Burst.  You also won't need to /heal as often since this is the only way to replenish HP and MP other than from receiving cures, refresh, or using consumables.

Speaking of mages, you do not learn spells automatically or by talking to a trainer.  Spells are learned from magical scrolls.  These are bought from vendors or dropped from certain monsters.  Some can also be quested.  This makes leveling a mage class very expensive due to the cost of scrolls.  Ordinary job abilities are learned as you level.

Ranged ammunition such as bullets, arrows and most thrown items are consumed on use.  You need to be exceptionally careful if using thrown items that give you increased damage to not accidentally throw it at your target.  There is no means to cancel the action other than to quickly /heal and hope you sit before you throw.

Beastmaster pets cannot be interacted by anyone other than a beastmaster.  In order to heal a pet the beastmaster must feed it biscuits designed for healing pets.  Once a beastmaster leaves a zone they will lose their pet.  Pets that have been tamed in the wild will eventually cease to be friendly to the beastmaster and will attack them, especially if the pet was a high level one.  When a wild pet is released it will either peacefully go back to its patrol area (providing it's non-aggressive to start with) or disappear.  Beastmasters cannot tame beastmen or NMs, instead they will bind it temporarily giving the beastmaster time to escape.  In absence of a suitable pet the beastmaster may use a jug pet.  These will not go hostile against the beastmaster, they last longer, and can be more stronger than a tamed pet.

Unlike a lot of other MMORPGs which fix your job to the one you selected at character creation, FFXI allows you to play any job you want by visiting your moghouse or a moogle and changing job.  When playing for the first time the player is limited to choosing between a red mage, black mage, white mage, warrior, monk or thief.  Later on in the game the player can unlock other speciality jobs like paladin or death knight by completing certain quests.  Also on completion of a special quest players can unlock their subjob.  The subjob allows allocation of a second job which caps at half the level of your main job, so if you choose to set your main job as a 24 white mage and a subjob as a 22 black mage you will be a level 24 white mage / level 12 black mage, with all the extra mp bonus and spells of a level 12 black mage.  Subjobs require to be leveled separately, so if you level up to a 48 white mage you will still have a level 22 black mage subjob.

You can also change gear whilst in combat, allowing you to utilize certain items of clothing that benefit individual skills.  Changing weapons (including ranged items) will result in resetting your TP to 0.  The major issue with this is that the more equipment you carry the less inventory space you have available, and even if you have something equipped it will still take up an inventory slot.  You can increase your inventory capacity and that of your Mogsafe by completing Gobbiebag quests, these require high amounts of fame and lots of rare and expensive materials.  You can also store unused equipment with porter moogles or storage NPCs for a small fee.

Should you accidentally aggro a monster or fight something too hard there is very little chance of escaping it if you attempt to run away.  Monsters that are in hot persuit will continue to chase and hit you as you run, and nearby NPCs will not assist you.  Some monsters persue via scent, so unless you can put a great distance between yourself and the monster and use deodorizers you will still be persued.  The only option here is to run towards a zone line and hope that the monster gives up the chase otherwise you'll have to run into the next zone.  Standard monsters that lose aggro will disappear if they've been pulled far away from their patrol area and respawn.  Notorious Monsters will slowly return to their patrol area.  Any monsters returning to their patrol area will slowly recover their hit points.  Until it reaches 100% health the monster will not give full experience points to anyone else who takes claim of it.  The other option is to Call For Help.  Since claiming a monster binds it to you and your party nobody else will be able to assist you fighting it until you either invite them, lose aggro, or use Call For Help.  Targetting and attacking another monster will also cause your previous target to be marked as unclaimed unless a different party member attacks it.  Loot or experience points from targets that you no longer have claimed to will then go to the next person who takes claim of it.  Calling for help will mark all targets that you've damaged or performed abilities on and will display their position on the radar for other players to see.  Monsters that are marked will not give any experience points or loot when defeated.  If the player who has used Call For Help causes the monster to lose aggro either by dying, zoning, or running away, the monster will no longer be marked and will either despawn or return to its patrol area.

Death has unforgiving penalties.  You have 1 hour before someone can come to rescue your corpse.  If you choose to release you will lose 10% experience points and be thrown back to your last saved home point.  Different raise levels will restore some of the experience points lost.  If you only just leveled up and the number of points lost is greater than what you currently have you will be de-leveled and any armor that you was wearing for that level will be unequipped.  You will still retain any spells for that level but you cannot use them until you level up again.

Skills such as the various weapon types and magic require to be leveled up to be more effective.  As you fight or cast your skills will increase by a fraction.  Weapon skills and agressive magic spells such as nukes will only increase if you battle against monsters within that skills' level, not against your level, so even if you're a level 50 you will not gain any skill points fighting a level 50 monster if your skill is far too low, and you'll most likely miss most of the time or do no damage.  Each job level also has a skill cap.  The higher the level your skill gets the more longer it takes to gain a skill point.

Crafting skills also level in the same way as weapons and magic skills.  Crafting an item has a chance of failure or success, both with a chance of giving you a skillup.  Failure results in loss of the crystal used and a percentage of materials.  The more lower level your craft skill is from the items' craft level the more materials you will lose.  Also it is said that the moon phase in the game affects chances of success/failure, and having your moghouse decorated with furniture that is strong in the element of the crystal you're using will also improve your chances of success.  As well as succeeding in crafting there's a chance of producing a higher quality version.  This is also affected by the moon phase and your craft level vs the items' craft leve.  The higher the level your craft skill is above the items' craft level the greater the chance you have at producing a high quality version.

In addition to leveling craft skills you will be required every 10th level to visit a guild of that craft to take a test and advance.  If you do not then you will not be able to level your craft beyond its cap.  You will also need to be a specific job level to take these tests.  These tests will require you to hand in a craftable item which you can either craft yourself or buy on the auction house.  Also you can only specialize in 1 craft (with the exception of fishing and synergy.)  Once you reach level 60 in all crafts you will only then be able to reach 100 in 1 of the crafts or spread the remaining 40 levels over multiple crafts.  You will end up needing to level other crafts as you will come across recipes that require more than 1 craft to produce it, such as a Mahogany Bed which requires level 60 woodworking and level 53 clothcraft.  Any craft in FFXI takes a long time to level and you may reach max level in your jobs long before you reach max level in your crafts, and some materials or crystals needed will require you to be a certain level to farm them.

Upon reaching level 50 and every 5 levels afterwards you will be required to perform a certain test to unlock your levels and advance.  These are only needed to be done once per character, so if you are a level 60 black mage you do not have to do those tests again with another job.  Many of these tests require you to do them with other players.

Traveling around Vana'diel is limited to running, chocobo hiring, boats and airships.  Chocobos can only be hired from cities or at crags and you only have a certain amount of time you can stay on them.  The player controls the chocobo, it is not an automated journey.  There are no private mounts that you carry with you to mount up anywhere in the world and you cannot ride a chocobo inside a dungeon or a city.  Ships and airships require you to either pay gil to board or to also have a relevant pass.  Airships going to and from Jeuno requires you to be a certain rank in order to be rewarded with a permanent pass.  To be permitted to board the airship to Kazham which is a leveling ground for the level 40+ you'll be required to either purchase the pass at a very inflated price or to provide 3 chest keys obtained from fighting beastmen in the lower level beastmen strongholds.  Ships and airships can be a long and slow journey, and you'll also have to wait for them to arrive at the docks to board them, but they are quicker than trying to get from A to B on a chocobo.

I mentioned earlier about furnishing moghouses and about Mogsafes.  A moghouse is a private room in the Residential Area of a city or town which you can decorate and store items and equipment in a Mogsafe.  You can only access items stored in a Mogsafe from inside a moghouse or from a Moogle if the town doesn't have a residential area.  You can also get additional storage by decorating your home with furnishings that give extra storage slots.  Items that are stored in the Storage can only be accessed from your moghouse in your home land, and you can only decorate your moghouse in your home land.  Moghouses can also act as an indoor greenhouse for growing plants.

Rise of the Zilart expansion pack included the level increase from 60-75 and introduced new jobs, zones, quests and missions.  It was one of the most largest and detailed expansions for FFXI.  Included in the expansion was the nightmare world of Dynamis, a new endgame area Tu'lia (nicknamed as Sky), new NMs and HNMs, dragoon, ninja, samurai and summoner jobs, and avatar prime battles for summoners to get them as summonable pets.  Like with beastmaster pets only their owner is able to interact with them, although unlike beastmasters a dragoon pet can be healed in the same way a player heals by using /heal, and when the summoner summons a new avatar it will have 100% HP again.  A new currency of Kindred Seals was also added from fighting higher level mobs for entering higher level battlefields (KSNMs) similar to BCNM battlefields.

Treasures of Aht Urghan was the second expansion pack.  This included a new higher level city that is constantly under seige by surrounding beastmen strongholds, and a whole new range of quests and missions that revolved around the city.  There was plenty of new adventures which included new battlefields, salvage operations, einherjar, assault, chocobo raising and racing, and new jobs blue mage, puppet master, and corsair.  2 new special avatar prime battles Odin and Alexander were added for summoners.

While the ToAU expansion revolved more around its own history, Chains of Promathia was a continuation from Rise of the Zilart and delved more deeper into the history of Vana'diel and the mystery behind the crags and the Zilartian race.  While there was no new jobs added to this expansion there was more zones added, quests and missions, a new endgame area Al'Taieu (nicknamed Sea), many new battleground areas that were mostly to do with the missions, and a new avatar prime battle Diabolos.

#4 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -

What EA says in terms of this game being in a working condition or "almost fixed" is a complete crock of sh*t.  This game has annoyed me far more than any other game, even worse than Sims 3, because it is far worse.

This game is one of the most badly coded and designed games I've ever seen.  The AI is lousy and retarded, the city sizes are way too small, there's so many bugs it would take a dozen pages for me to describe them all.

Before EA addressed even half of these issues they've already released 2 packs.  This annoys me the most since this just tells me the company doesn't care if their software is broken, all they care about is churning out more and more "stuff packs" with inflated price tags because they know people will buy them, because they're sheep.  People think that a stuff pack might contain some fixes in it, but all it is is a pack that contains stuff that they already tested before they released the game and took it out again so that it can be added in later as a content package.  There are no bug fixes, they come in patches if/when EA feels like it.

Already there's thousands of abandoned worlds as result of players who quit playing due to broken worlds or inactive players.  Worlds break almost on a daily basis for whatever random reason.  You're bound to get hit by half a dozen rollbacks in a single day.

I don't need to tell you all of what's wrong with it.  There's plenty of statements and reviews by other disatisfied players that you don't have to look far to read their horror stories.  This game is so bad that even satan himself won't put this game in his hall of fame of bad games.

This game makes me so damned angry.  Not just the game but EA the company itself.  How DARE THEY release a game like this in such a horrific condition at full price, and what's more they've also conned a good number of their customers by selling "update packs" which means those who paid out for the Limited Edition now have nothing special that owners of the Digital Deluxe Edition don't have, only those who have the Digital Deluxe Edition have other features which then encourages Limited Edition owners to upgrade to the Digital Deluxe Edition, so they've now paid more for their game than everyone else has.  What a scam!

From being a customer of EA for so many years I can say that EA is like a vampire that sucks out all the fun out of games, then spits it back out again in small test tubes and charges people for it without purifying it first.

Save yourself the frustration and your money, this game isn't worth it. :evil:

#5 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -
For the first time ever I had a city fail to work on me. Semi-disappointed since it was in part of a region that me and another were working on and had unlocked one of the great works and even got as far as building it, but to be honest I'm already bored of that game and frustrated with the number of bugs and badly designed AI. It's the same crap time and time again, I make a bunch of squares since curves don't go down too well, I try to remove corners and replace them with tight curves so that the traffic doesn't u-turn all the time, I try to arrange it that the main part of the traffic hits avenues going through the middle or on the outside so its not cluttering the small areas where there's residence, industry and commercial. Sadly though it not always works out. I'll have sims commuting in/out of my city causing more traffic, the balance of different job types vs different wealth types is completely misproportioned so I've got lots of unemployed sims in one class of sims and too many untaken jobs for another class of sims, I got uneducated students despite having thousands of empty seats, the traffic is totally insane, I got criminals being created like they're coming out of a factory so police are always filling the streets, the garbage men aren't getting to all the houses in time so I got garbage trucks filling the streets, they all follow each other and create more traffic issues, and the amount of space you have to build your city in is far too tiny! Stay away from this game if you value your sanity and your money. This is not worth it. It's yet another game that EA doesn't care to fix and is more happy to keep throwing "packs" at you in a hopes you'll buy them when they're fundamental parts of the base game that were just taken out so they could be sold separately with an inflated price tag.
#6 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -

btw I can see what EA have done there.

They have multiple editions of Simcity:

Simcity normal version (base game which had a bunch of features taken out of it before it got released)
Simcity Limited Edition (base game + heroes/villains set)
Simcity Deluxe Edition Upgrade Pack (base game with the features that were taken out in the normal version for an inflated price tag)
Simcity Digital Deluxe Edition (base game + heroes/villains set + city sets, digital download only)

So it sounds like they misrepresented you by advertising to you what is in the Digital Deluxe Edition and making it sound like you were gonna get all that when you was actually viewing the page for the Deluxe Edition Upgrade Pack and bought that one instead.

#7 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -

I was sickened by the fact I paid out full price for the Limited Edition which contained the Heroes/Villains pack, only to discover the upgrade to the Digital Deluxe Edition which not only included the French, German and British city packs but the Heroes/Villains pack also.  No discount for owning the Limited Edition already.

So what does this mean?

Normal Version + Digital Deluxe Edition == Limited Edition + Digital Deluxe Edition

Only you pay less for the normal version than the Limited Edition version.

R I P   O F F !

:evil: :evil: :evil: :evil:

#8 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -

This is one of those games that you just end up switching off the PC, curling into a corner rocking back and forth crying.  Yes, it was this bad.  My first impressions on this game back in 2010 during open beta was oh...my...god.  It certainly looked more nicer than its predecessor FFXI and had some beautiful HD graphics, but it lagged like crazy and this was on a brand new computer specifically tailored to run high definition games at a very fast rate.  My machine couldn't even handle this.

After the laggy video of me being thrown around a boat by a giant sea monster I attempted to move around and get used to my surroundings.  I can forgive SE for its confusing maze of a map and the character slipping and sliding whilst running like I had wet soap stuck to the bottom of my feet, but I had no idea what I was doing and the constant lag was just annoying the hell out of me.  I was so frustrated I couldn't even focus on what the NPCs were telling me and after a while all that talking was just driving me nuts, I wanted to get outside and fight something!

I don't remember how long it took to get my first quest, I think it was a levequest or something I can't remember, but I was finally outside staring at the lush forests looking for my first target.  People were running by looking like the T1000 in mercury mode, their textures weren't even loading.  I spotted what looked like my target in the distance and began firing my arrow at it.  I had no idea if I hit it or not, it wasn't coming towards me, so I moved in closer.  I did seem to be shooting but nothing was happening.  Suddenly I got a message that I killed 1 of my targets, yet there it was hopping around in the distance.  Several seconds later it warped to my feet dead.  /facepalm

At some point in the game I decided to try my hand at crafting.  In FFXI it wasn't overly too complicated.  You just found a crystal, gathered some materials, looked online for a recipe and attempted to make it and it would either fail or work.  In FFXIV however I was faced with fat blue windows with multiple selections which was to me massively over complicated.

I hated it basically, and even when SE removed the subscription whilst they tried to fix many of the issues I barely played it and immediately cancelled the account as soon as it stopped being free.

I would've said it's too late for SE to try to recover this dreadful mess of a game and that you should save yourself the pain and agony of this monstrosity,... but all may not be too late.

Recently EA released Simcity, an online version of a fairly decent simulation game that had all the fun taken out of it, half of it worked, and was an epic failure.  The interest in a new MMO game quite clearly shows there's a need and desire for a new MMO, and word has been going around for a while that FFXIV has undergone some serious changes that have greatly improved the game and addressed many of the issues that had been around since the original beta.  While there's not much detail that can be said about what is going on behind the woodwork (and also due to the NDA being applied to its closed beta testers) it's great news for FF and MMORPG fans and is quite possibly the best chance of a lifeline to bring this game back to life and back on the market again.  As for what changes have been applied, well guess we'll have to wait and see when it's out on open beta.

#9 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -

FFXI is an MMORPG released on the PS2 and PC.  The reason why it looks no different on the XBox is because it was tailored for the PS2, therefore it's using PS2 graphics just like the PC version is doing.  All SE has done is made it that those who don't own a PS2 or a PC but own an XBox are now able to play FFXI on their XBox, but they'll be getting the same quality graphics that are used on a PS2.

They could've done better if they had a HD setting that was enabled only on PC and XBox, but I guess they had their hands full trying to fix FFXIV and took most of the FFXI team to go work on that abomination.  They refused putting in features that would improve the PC version like minimaps because they can't make minimaps on the PS2 and they don't want PC players having an advantage over PS2 players.  That's why the controls are as clunky as they are.

#10 Posted by geekgirl101 (15 posts) -

Not content with having ruined the release of FFXIV but then this abomination was released for FFXI.  The story behind Abyssea was that maws had opened up around various points of the world of Vana'diel that could suck in and spit out people into an alternate world called Abyssea where the heroes of Abyssea failed their mission in stopping Promathia, the cities were destroyed, and the surviving population was now scattered around various points in an attempts to reclaim the lands which were now roaming with powerful monsters.  People who enter Abyssea have a limited time they could stay there unless they farmed specific lights from monsters to produce chests that contained time extenders that they could almost stay inside Abyssea indefinitely providing they didn't log out, crash, or leave Abyssea itself.

While it was yet another poor excuse of making new zones by recolouring existing ones (think Dynamis) the biggest issue with this expansion wasn't so much that the FFXI art team got lazy, but that they added in a "get to level 90 quick" feature that got dubbed as "book burning."  Originally leveling up beyond level 10 required you to find a set party of up to 6 players consisting of a tank, a healer, and the rest being damage dealers (later levels then required you to include a job capable of restoring mana to the casters), then picking a spot to fight monsters that were gauged as "Incredibly Tough" that the party were capable of downing within 3-5 minutes for an average 250 experience points, and having to time weapon skills to perform brightly coloured skillchains for extra damage.  It was an incredibly slow way of leveling, even if the party was pulling monsters one after another without a break to create a chain that would increase the amount of experience points earned by 10% for every chain level because whilst the amount of experience points you needed per level increased the amount of experience points you earned from higher level monsters never went any higher.  The players needed something to speed things up, and limited use experience bonus rings and corsair rolls was barely scratching the surface.  The amount of experience points earned and the length it took to down the monsters needed tweaking, but instead SE came up with a new solution.  This solution was a book.

The idea seemed pretty sound at first.  Players would pick a page of one of many books scattered around outdoor and dungeon areas, they'd go out and fight the set number of monsters that the page demanded, and they'd get an experience point bonus for completing the page.  It seemed to go down pretty well, but there was still complaints about it still being too slow and quite a lot of the pages picked a bad set of mobs to defeat.  In Abyssea there was books there too, but these books could only be completed once per Vana day, which is roughly once an hour.  SE caved in to the amount of noise being made about the books and changed them so they could be repeated indefinitely, and they also put in an option for players outside of Abyssea to have the book pages automatically repeat themselves after completion so that the players didn't have to keep running back and forth to pick up a new page.  The repeatable page without need to return to the book was a welcoming change especially for players who had to venture deep into the wilds to find a safe spot to fight the monsters required by the page.

Players quickly realised that books in dungeons kept increasing the amount of experience points every time they were completed until they reached a certain cap, providing you didn't leave the dungeon (this didn't include logging out.)  Also once players worked out the mechanics for earning experience points in Abyssea they discovered they could enter with jobs as low as level 30 and earn massive amounts of experience points both from monster kills and by doing the pages there as long as there was level 90s to fight the level 90 monsters and had unlocked all the lights for time extensions, earning experience points from monster kills, and bonus experience points inside chests.  6 man parties became a rareity as dungeons and Abyssea zones filled with alliances of up to 18 members fighting the same mobs over and over.  Those inside dungeons would have to adopt up to 3 low level players - 1 for each party - in order for the alliance to sync their levels so that they could earn experience points from the monsters in the dungeons, whilst in Abyssea the lower level players would just sit there and let the level 90s do all the work for them.  Jeuno became a shoutfest for gil farmers offering services in Abyssea at a charge of 100k per hour per player to earn experience points for them.

It was also noted that a lot of items from Abyssea sold for lots of gil even from vendors.  Cruor was more valuable than gil because of its abundance.  Spending several hours in Abyssea would rake up lots of cruor and items, and depending on how you used the cruor you could make tonnes of gil.  One known way was to spend it all on gear that could be vendored for 6-10k gil each, almost twice the amount of gil than the amount of cruor it cost to buy it.  Since cruor is so easily obtained it's no serious issue to spend it all and then earn it back again unless you want to spend it on brews to solo bosses.

Endgame had also changed dramatically from the wait 3 hours for a HNM to spawn and hope you get it first to farming pop items from normal monsters or lesser NMs in order to spawn the tougher NMs.  There was still time-based NMs but their spawn rates were very quick.  They were still overcamped though, whether it was for spawn items to spawn NMs or for items needed to upgrade empyrean gear.  HNMs themselves were altered too.  Most gear drops were now changed to be rare/exclusive items, and HNMs that used to have a chance to spawn as a king were now made spawnable after obtaining a very rare item from KSNM battlegrounds.  There were no level 90 HNMs added into the game.

In order to provide for players who didn't have the Abyssea expansion SE adjusted the levels of many monsters inside dungeons so that players could gain experience points in them.  Unfortunately their choice of monsters wasn't so great.  Many of the frequently targetted monsters by lower players had been replaced by higher level monsters, over half the monsters that were targets for getting coffer keys and quest items had been replaced, and lower level players who were going inside a low level dungeon for a mission would find their paths blocked by level 90 aggressive monsters.  SE attempted to rectify the issue with lower level players not being able to reach their destinations for their low level missions by placing books near the areas that would offer sneak and invisible, but some of the books were put in a bad place that the players would have to remove their invisible in order to open doors and risk being killed by level 90 sight aggressive monsters.  /facepalm

Other changes to the older world included the means to enter Dynamis more frequently with a one-time payment for a more cheaper hourglass and making Dynamis an open world so you could team with other players for killing certain bosses instead of being limited only to the players who bought and divided up the 10mil hourglass.  Actually this is the only change in Abyssea that I feel really positive about as it allowed more players to be able to farm their relic armor, blue mages could now farm abilities that were exclusive to Dynamis without a full alliance or fear of the monster dying before it used the right ability, and more people would be able to complete their relic weapons.

Because of all the changes with level syncs and books this affected the market for gear and food heavily.  Providing you had a level 10-24 in the party you could stay in Gusgen Mines all the way to level 90 wearing level 1 gear.  Farming artifact armor wasn't really necessary anymore since you'd rarely have a chance to wear it before it was outdated by artifact and empyrean armor, even RSE gear could be ignored for the same reason.  Sets like noct, seer's and austere could also be ignored (although some parts of them can still be used at endgame but they're not necessary), and since you could get superior buffs after defeating certain bosses in Abyssea it was no longer necessary to buy expensive food.

The superior buffs in Abyssea also affected different jobs.  Red mages were no longer required for their refresh buff, and those who still felt they needed it could sub red mage and apply it themselves.  Red mage debuffs could be done by black mages and white mages.  Summoners were also shunned for their inability to cast anything higher than cure 4 which created huge amounts of enmity, and their pets weren't wanted as they were too weak.  A lot of other damage dealing classes were ignored or left to fend for themselves since jobs like warriors and ninjas were fully capable of supplying almost all TP-based abilities needed for TP-based procs.  Thieves were just as useless as ever, only required to apply Treasure Hunter buff and then get out of the way so they didn't cause the NM to die too quickly or make it spam TP.  Half the jobs in the game were only useful as subjobs, so if you wanted gear for those your best bet was to farm them as a job that was wanted which was usually either a blue mage, ninja, warrior, white mage, or either a black mage/bard for magic procs, thief for Treasure Hunter, or monk for nighttime blunt damage proc.

Abyssea really did ruin it for a lot of the players.  There's a lot of people who parrot out "but I LOVE THE BOOK SYSTEM, it's F-ING AWESOME!" but these are not real FFXI players.  These are players who moaned day after day after day in Blizzards' PVP forums because they couldn't kill a warrior in the same gear but because he was a horde he must've had some special advantage.  These are players who whine they can't just make a level 90 in WOW and earn their epics in the first week.  These are players who don't even bother to say "hello" or "goodbye" when they used the LFG tool in WOW and just want to get to the end boss and get their loot.  These players only last as long as it takes to get their loot, and once they have it all they don't stick around and don't care about the ones who are still waiting for their turn.  The real FFXI players are the ones who will say the older system was better social-wise but admit that it did take far too long to level and needed to change, just not the way SE did it.