Final Fantasy XI and Vista
Well, my recent dismay at EQ2 (all of my coworkers leaving the game, most my friends leaving the server, lack of interesting content, etc) has driven me back to dinking with FFXI (Final Fantasy XI). I originally played it back … wow, almost 3 years ago and had played it since US release.
After reinstalling, reactivating my account (with the help of the cool “Welcome Home” promotions they have—reactivate and a free period again to get you back into the game), and even picking up the new expansion pack, Treasures of Aht Urhgan, I’m back casually playing and leveling up a… of course, Red Mage. Red Mages are like furies in EQ2, but cooler.
So, the challenge? Installing on Vista. My CDs (yes, laugh all you want, I didn’t have a DVD reader when I got FFXI the first time) are.. well, what? from 2002? That SURE didn’t support Vista; however, unlike Sony Online Entertainment and EQ2, SquareEnix has embraced newer technology such as dual core, the new 8800 video cards, and even Vista. A special version of PlayOnline is available here. Download this FIRST and install it instead of the PlayOnline found on the original CDs (or even the newer DVDs). After that, install FFXI and each expansion as normal.
Now, I had ONE issue—I run on 64–bit Windows Vista and the Control Panel for FFXI (to change resolutions, bump mapping, etc) crashed. How to fix that? Just take a deep breath and do a bit of registry editing—this would have been the case anyway because the controls do not natively support my monitor’s resolution. The best guide for the registry settings can be found here. Tweak to your heart’s delight.
Beyond that, it’s ran flawlessly and the world itself is BEAUTIFUL on the newer video cards—without ANY lag what-so-ever (except Jeuno… though /names off helps a LOT there).
So, I’ll be dinking with FFXI on my off time in EQ2… if you’re around, I’m playing as Derahine (obviously) on Hades. I get a kick out of the “Welcome to Hades!” when I log in—it’s like when I walk into the office.