Final Fantasy 14 had amazing graphics. No one could deny that the graphics were absolutely stunning, but maybe they were too stunning. The flowerpots in the game had about 1,000 polygons and required the same rendering power as the actual characters themselves. The graphics put a strain on computer hardware and made the MMO experience less of an MMO experience. To combat the rendering strain, Square Enix reduced the amount of visible players in a single given area to 20.
Final Fantasy 14 was developed by a team that wasn't familiar with MMORPGs. Sure, the game was littered with bugs and a tacky user interface, but the largest issue was the lack of quality content. In fact, most players will tell you that the game lacked any real substance. The combat and questing were extremely tedious. According to director Naoki Yoshida, there was a lack of MMO knowledge and experience among the game's developers. Apparently, Japan hadn't really delved much into the field of MMOs at the time.
Final Fantasy 14 lacked enjoyable content and wasn't beginner-friendly. Fortunately, the game was able to bounce back from its inauspicious beginning.