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Why Final Fantasy XI is a Must-Play for Final Fantasy Fans in 2024?

As a lifelong Final Fantasy fan, I've experienced some of the most memorable moments in each game imaginable. From summoning my first Aeon to battling Shinra soldiers on a motorcycle. But one game I initially overlooked was Final Fantasy XI (FF11), the series' first MMO RPG. My skepticism was misplaced. FF11 isn't just a great game - it's an incredible Final Fantasy experience, and one that is rich with story, character development, and series homage.



Why Final Fantasy XI is a Must-Play for Final Fantasy Fans in 2024?


A solo player's dream

Contrary to most MMO RPGs, FF11's main story is solo-friendly. The game does not force multiplayer interaction for progression. While some missions will take longer by yourself, it remains as approachable as any traditional single-player title.


Storytelling at its best

Rivaling the best in the series at over 250 hours long, FF11 weaves seven smaller yet full-length stories together - each with their own unique characters and arcs - feeling like multiple standalone Final Fantasys in one.


Gameplay that redefined the genre

Despite its age, FF11's combat and world design remain engaging. It strikes a balance between vast explorable zones and reasons to revisit them: giving you the sense of living in this world every time you log on. And with 22 unique roles from the job system available, diverse strategic gameplay was always guaranteed.


Music that tugs at your heartstrings

Although Nobuo Uematsu had limited involvement in FF11's soundtrack, his contributions are exceptional alongside composer Naoshi Mizuta creating stunning musical pieces that enhance every story beat and character moment.


A love letter to lore

FF11 is a love letter to the franchise's rich history including nods to various entries along the way - classic jobs such as Paladin and Samurai, summons such as Bahamut, and story elements that become the backbone of its world.


Learning to overcome challenges together

Despite its allure, FF11 comes with many challenges for newcomers. The game's systems and UI are dated, and the learning curve can be steep. However, a wealth of resources and an active community make up for this. Overcoming these obstacles is part of the journey players in 2024 will have to brace themselves for - but they'll be rewarded with an experience that deepens their appreciation for the Final Fantasy franchise.


FF11 vs FF14: Two completely different experiences

Why play FF11 when FF14 exists? is a question that gets asked frequently. It's important to understand that these are two very different experiences entirely. FF11 offers a more traditional, old-school MMO experience focusing on social play and world engagement while FF14 is designed to have modern accessibility in mind. Both games excel at what they do best but don't try to substitute one experience for the other.


Final Thoughts: A classic that has only aged well

Final Fantasy XI's deep narrative, immersive gameplay, and series homage all help it stand as the timeless classic that it's widely known as today. It has matured like fine wine over time becoming more accessible and solo-friendly than ever before. Missing out on FF11 as a Final Fantasy fan means missing out on being part of the series' evolution. For those ready to take on this journey we encourage them to jump into FF11 in 2024 - an experience like no other and a testament to the Final Fantasy series' legacy still standing strong today.

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