FF XII was actually one of the first games I checked out at E3 this year. I admit I am a recent convert to the series. I only got into Final Fantasy games with X, and even then I played it nearly a year after it actually came out. I loved X so much though that I went out and purchased the rest of the games in the series and have been slowly working my way backwards through them. Besides the great stories in each game the thing I really loved about them was the combat. I liked seeing all my characters lined up on one side of the screen with the crazy vegetable monster or whatever on the other side. Each game had its new features. Things like Materia or the Sphere Grid were super compelling additions to the game, but they simply complemented the already familiar style of combat.
Like Tycho said, I’m still going to buy FF:XII. I’ll play it just like I played and enjoyed Crystal Chronicles, tactics and even XI. While I was playing all those spin offs I always expected that eventually Squareenix would deliver XII and I’d get to play a real Final Fantasy game again. Now that I see XII is some kind of .Hack style MMO game without either of the M’s or even the O, I can’t help but fell disappointed. It seems to me that the people who want that sort of combat already have their game in XI. Meanwhile the rest of us who enjoy the classic FF combat have been patiently waiting for its return since we loaded up X-2 and let out a long sigh.
Obviously it still looks incredible and I’m sure it’s got an amazing story that will pull me in and hook me for the entire game. I don’t think it’s going to be a bad game. It’s just another spin off like Crystal Chronicles that I’ll play and enjoy while I wait for the next real Final Fantasy game.