I love the your writing on Final Fantasy XII. I agree that the game is incredibly accessible once you get into it, but one interesting observation I’ve had is that I’ve suggested the game to 2 close friends who are FF14 fans who gave up on it early because they felt oddly overwhelmed (or maybe underwhelmed) by wanting to maximize the gambit system or complete every hunt right away and the game doesn’t let you do that. I think even though people talk about the game like its a single player MMO you really can’t play it like one. You have to play it like a traditional Final Fantasy game, where you have to advance the story and take long detours before you think about unlocking licenses or upgrading gear.
I think that, as well as the Rabanastre sequence being a fairly long setup with fetch quests and tutorials, a lot of people gave up on the game or cemented their opinions before the adventure really starts. If you can make it to a certain point, the game rewards you with so much charm and political and philosophical weight in the story.
I also agree it still has some of the best music in the series. I still get the songs stuck in my head all the time.