There are some reasons why I don't particularly like 13, but before I get into that, there is something that needs clarification: Final Fantasy games are very, very different from one another. They change so many things from one game to the next, they are barely part of the same genre. Because of that, people that play several of them tends to feel very strongly in favor or against any of those games, and being a fan of a Final Fantasy means a lot less about your position to other Final Fantasies than with other franchises...
That being said, there are some reasons why me, personally, didn't thought too highly of that game:
Many of the characters are extremely unlikable. From the sunny hyperactive girl, to the emotionally shut down protagonist, to the crying teenager that likes to blame other people, they are not really endearing. Not that they have to be, but I felt I was enduring my time with them more than growing fond of them. The closest to a good, interesting character was the comic relief, and there is something to be said about the prospect of the stereotypical funny black guy with an Afro (that is also a bird's nest) being the most rounded person in your party.
I didn't like the setting either. It had interesting stuff, but there were dozens of new concepts that everyone (but the player) was familiar with: Fal'Cie, L'Cie, Cie'th, Pulse, Coccon, Focus, Crystals, Orphan, Lindzei, Eidolons, stasis, Gestalt, etc, etc. It was dauntingly low concept... The characters in the game talk and talk about this like they were obvious truths (which they are, for them), but it sounds like alien language for the player. The first few hours, it was like I was in the middle of a franchise, without ever played the previous games. It is all clarified in an text-heavy, poorly organized encyclopedia, which is a pretty awful way to convey exposition.
EDIT: Now that I noticed how long the thread was necro'd from, I feel kind of bad for falling. Oh, well... my opinion still stands.
I enjoy QL when the people involved are not of the same mind. I like Dan because he seems to contrast with pretty much everyone else in the crew (specially Drew), and he is genuinely enthusiastic about things, filling the Vinny-shaped hole in our hearts...
I had a number of issues with Origin: weird collision detection, random difficulty curve, objectives that failed to register, that didn't happened in City or Asylum. Overall, the game was decent but, as you said, it lacks that extra layer of polish that makes the previous games instant classics.
I usually disregard statements like "how did they allowed such a game to come out", because, most of the times, they simply didn't saw it. If it was so pervasive, any tester and developer worth his/her salt would have noticed it; and there is no point comparing a couple people working in certification at the platform holder, with a couple dozens working in QA at the publisher, with several thousands playing the game.
To all those people saying "they shouldn't have released the game in its current state": It's amazing the bugs you can find when you suddenly have 1 million additional playtesters to find those bugs.
Ubisoft are big, but they aren't that big.
I understand we all want things to work flawlessly, and I have no doubts there was certain amount of details swiped under the rug here; but to believe any piece of software should aim to be 100% bug free is downright impossible...
For example, Microsoft just discovered a security flaw that existed since Win95... A company the size of MS found a serious bug undetected for 20 years (and don't think they are the exception).
I know people are trying to blame someone for this, but is it reasonable to put Sony and MS on the same bag as Ubisoft?
As far as I know, certification is pretty shallow in terms of QA. They don't work in testing framerate, server issues, collision detection or similar issues that fall entirely in the realm of the publisher/developer QA department. Are those errors so pervasive that almost everyone will see them in the first hours of gameplay? Otherwise, I don't think its reasonable to expect them to do QA job...
@korwin: You know, I don't really equate going to a link in youtube or giving a like in facebook to this. To me, this is worst, because it is inside the game. It is a constant icon on your map, a constant chest out of reach, a constant reminder that you should subscribe to our service and complete our promotional material to get this loot... inside the game setting. In a way, it is even worst than the NPC in Dragon Age 1 selling you DLC, because at least the whole process was game related. This is simply advertisement for other services and products Ubisoft wants you to try inside the game, and content gated to them. Not that I wanted them to sweet-talk me into the deal, but this is so transparent from Ubisoft is almost insulting.
One of the main selling points of Steam is its ubiquity and transparency. I know it didn't start that way, but this case is not only pervasive to the games, but doesn't work half of the times...
@thatonedudenick: You may want to check "Storm of Steel", by Ernst Junger, for the opposite description. It has the diaries of a surviving German soldier during most of the conflict (and Somme in particular), so it has this weird detachment as he describes all the dead and destruction around him. It lacks the Aesop-like lyric and nature of most chronicles of WWI, but the routinary nature gives it a twist to the horrors he encounters.