i am an avid FF fan like most here, and like everyone i got this the day it came out. i have tried, i want to like it. but i can't help feel that square enix has just raped the final fantasy brand.
it seems to me that, while trying to broaden their consumers overseas, they picked up on the wrong role models. Michale Bay shouldn't be someone to try to imitate; flashy visuals and tons of actions don't cover up the flaws for long, and their are many of them.
my biggest beef is the characters, its hard to want to play a game where dying actually seems the most satisfying option, when every cut scene you wish one of them would just commit suicide already before you have to. after having to come to terms with the fact they are not going to off themselves, the painfully horrid battle system works it's charm. now this could almost be considered quite good, until you realize that your not actually needed, like as an afterthought they realized it was a game and allowed you to control a single player, whom can to attack or command the Ai to all attack together, heal or play rock paper scissors. the customization is something else to be desired, because being able to change weapons and perks(abilities) may distract you from running down the never ending corridor. the most important aspect i find when playing a rpg like this is story. now to say this didn't grip me to begin with might be a lie. but after the introduction i know very little about a world in turmoil, im cool with that, knowing more is what i want now. possibly it was everything else about the game draining the life from me, but i lost track of the story and never felt inspired by it. it seems ff has lost alot of charm, story and a vast interesting world to explore. i may not have made it too chapter 11, but i have tried several times. no game should make you play for 20 hours of hell before treating you to what is probably worse than previous titles, prancing about as the good section only because stepping in poo is better then having it thrown in your face.
some reasons for poor outputs from the company could be the length of time for game development and the huge weight of expectation. where each game is built from the ground up. not that i want copying but some things could stay similar, for instance leveling, battling, etc. shame things had to end this way.