Okay, so you've seen all the previews, reviews, and hype surrounding Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. You have at least one of those "friends" who won't shut up about it since he got into the alpha so many months ago. You've seen all the youtube videos, streams, and E3/Tokyo Game Show videos that exist on the internet. You've resigned yourself to your fate, and decided to be assimilated into the hive mind. Good for you! Welcome to the fold, brother/sister!
But wait! There's TWO versions, you say? A PS3 AND a PC version?
Well, how do you decide which one to play? You could ask your friends, but you know how biased they are. The PC gamer friend says "Duh, PC games are superior because I said so and I'm the absolute authority on games!", while your console buddy says "Duh, PS3 version, because everyone knows that console games are superior!"
Silly, useless, lovable friends.
Well, fear not, because whether this is your first foray into MMO gaming or if you're a seasoned veteran, this brief, handy guide will give you a quick look at the ups and downs of each version, so you can decide for yourself at a glance. Have a look, and choose wisely.
-Plenty of customization options
-Familiar MMO controls
-Hotkeys and custom macros put more power into your hands
-New engine means even some lower-spec systems can run it fairly decently
-Controls are more complex
-May need to upgrade system or buy a new one to play, making the choice potentially more expensive
-You can't modify the size of most UI elements like you can on PS3
-You need a really good system in order to run it on high settings
-Customizing everything to your liking can be a time-consuming chore
-Simple and intuitive
-Easy to control, once you get the hang of it
-No need for expensive parts or upgrades
-Ability to connect any USB keyboard makes chatting a snap
-Arguably cheaper than PC
-Trophies AND achievements! Double bonus!
-Lack of customization options over PC
-Control scheme takes some getting used to
As you can see, your choice here would depend on what kind of gamer you are, or what kind of experience you're looking to have.
If you prefer a simple, easy-to-control game experience, or if you're new to MMOs, the PS3 is probably the way to go. The intuitive controls are perfect for console gamers who have never played an MMO, and helps them ease into the genre.
On the other hand, if you're a PC gamer, or you're an MMO veteran, you probably prefer the customization options in the PC version. The customization options and familiarity of the UI and control scheme will appeal to those who already know what they're diving into.
Of course, there's also an argument to be made for getting BOTH versions. Yes, both. Why choose between one or the other? Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn features cross-system compatability, which allows people who own the PC version can play with the people playing the PS3 version, and vice versa. So if you make a character on the PS3 version, you can carry it over to the PC version, and also vice versa.
On top of that, it's also relatively inexpensive to pick up both versions. It'll cost around $70 to get both versions, which is little more than one brand-new console game, assuming you aren't getting the Collector's Editions for either system. That's a whole new ball game.
So there you have it, folks. Hopefully this guide has answered some questions and quelled your fears, giving you more confidence in your decision.