In part 1, I gave the background of this game. One can find it here:
Right now, everybody is concentrated on WOW. WOW is a great game. It achieved a PCU of 1.02 million in 4Q2008. That is definitely a great achievement.
But guess what, there is another title under NTES that is even more popular. That game is XYQ and it had a PCU of 2.32 million!
If one compares XYQ with WOW, one can’t help but wonder how can XYQ, with its outdated graphics and juvenile cartoonish play style, be twice as popular as WOW. But that is just what Chinese players like.
Similarly, the two latest most popular titles, SNDA’s AION and NTES’s new FF occupies similar category as WOW and XYQ. AION is Korea’s answer to WOW. The new FF has the same cartoon like graphics and Q style playing feature. AION emphasizes combat while new FF is heavy into relationships.
New FF has a lot of similarity to XYQ. But there are also significant differences. New FF has western theme while XYQ is based on Chinese mythology. New FF is real time game while XYQ is turn based game. XYQ is 2D while new FF is a 3D game.
Don’t want to talk too much about in game features of this game. I am not into game like this. But I am more interested in how Chinese gamers like this game. Anyway, I don’t have much experience in playing this game. Let me just hit some major points.
Graphically, what can I say about this game. This game looks just like cartoon. It is much prettier than XYQ. That is to be expected since it is a much newer game. Graphically, this game can’t be compared to games like AION, WOW, or TX2. But that is to be expected because it is not suppose to be realistic looking.
It is a full-fledged 3D game. But because it is cartoon looking (a Q style game), it is very easy on game players’ computer. This game is playable on every computer. The camera angle can be either free floating or fixed. There are still a lot of gamers in China that are not used to play 3D games. Therefore, an option to allow user to fix the camera angle is very useful.
The control is pretty standard, use left hand W, A, S, D to control the movement and use the mouse to control the attack or action.
One unique feature for this game is the 3D combat. AION has 3D combat also. But players in AION can’t fly indefinitely; the character will start to drop to the ground after certain time. For new FF, there is no such limitation. I believe it is the first game in China that has unlimited flying feature. 3D combat is certainly interesting. A lot of time, you don’t even realize who had hit you as they come from players where your camera can’t see. It definitely takes a lot of practice to be good at 3D combat. At the beginning, you wish you have 4 hands, one hand controls the movement, one hand controls the camera angle, one hand control the attack and action, and one hand controls the skills. Eventually, one get better at it. This feature would definitely draw players in and keep them here once they got better at it.
But the biggest features are the romance and relationship related features. There are so many of those relationship-related features in this game. AION can’t touch new FF in this area at all. I am not big into relationship features so I am not going to elaborate on them. But one mischievous feature is that a player can just put another player (of the opposite sex) on his/her lover list. Therefore, it creates some interesting cases where a girl is married (in-game) to one guy while is on the lovers list of several other guys.
Similar to XYQ, new FF is a relationship based game. New FF is very similar to XYQ. XYQ has very interesting combat element thank to its turn-based feature. New FF has very interesting combat element thanks to its unlimited 3D combat. But in their cores, both games are relationship games.
In the next article, I am going to talk about the progress of this game. Now, some in-game pictures: