Oh, now that I’ve finished Final Fantasy XIII, I can officially say I don’t understand all the hate it gets? I mean, to each their own, and I still found my own share of problems with it (yes, the storytelling issues concerning the datalog and pacing were big issues, though in my own case, I’m the kind of person that would read through that anyway, so being subjective, I didn’t really mind), but for the most part, the negatives I see about this game seem blown way out of proportion. Games can be linear, combat system isn’t as automatic or without player strategy as people make it out to be. I like the characters, ALL OF THEM. There were some choices in the game design I found funky, over-complicated, over-simplified, or under-explained, by in no cases did I find them as crippling as others did.
I totally believe many people genuinely and sincerely hate this game, but I think some people just like to find things to hate, and spend too much time critiquing it as a Final Fantasy game, rather than just… a game?