During this weekend of Beta phase 3 I was able to test the duty finder. At first I was afraid it was broken as I didn’t find a party right away, but the more dungeons and content I unlocked throughout my play and the more fights I made myself available for, the quicker my party was ready. I think it worked very smoothly and the experience points were great.
One of my biggest gripes in an MMORPG was finding someone to party with. I even remember in FFXIV 1.0 sitting around Ul’dah shouting for a party or waiting for someone to finally be looking for someone like me for a fight. I could be there for hours and not find anyone, and then get very frustrated. Now with this feature if I want to go through a dungeon, guildleve, or a primal battle, I can do so very easily. And if I don’t want to use the duty finder, or if I still want to form a party with my other guild members, I can do that too.
Of course, with the convenience people will complain how this is too easy, or too different, or there is something that doesn’t work the way they want. To those people I say: get a life. This feature was designed for those who would rather do what they came into the game to do. It is a way to work smarter, not harder. Yeah you could have spent the entire game of Skyrim walking to all your destinations instead of fast travel. Yeah, you could play a shooter game with just the starting pistol and slowly fought your way through. Yeah, you could keep the same sword in FFVII and slowly pick away at enemies for a challenge. Some people will always want things to be a challenge. But some people are also casual and want to enjoy the experience of the game world more than the challenge. This is why we have game saves now instead of having to play Mario all the way to the end in one sitting. This is why we have checkpoints in games so we can redo difficult parts from a certain point. This is why we have health packs and shields so we can push through to the next level or the next area.
The duty finder is a great way for us to get to what we want without having to do a lot of extra work and effort and waiting around. It is to math what the calculator was compared to using the slide rule. Some people will argue the slide rule was cool, and I agree it looked awesome. But I’d rather use the calculator.