Final Fantasy XI is strictly an online MMORPG with a subscription fee of $12 a month. The game play is archaic at best. That's not saying it's bad, but compared to more recent MMO's it's quite different. It is fun to acquire new classes (22 in total!!!) just to see how they play and with the new Alter egos, released in 2014, you can now level in the game solo and quite easily.
Alter egos are basically companions that fight with/for you and make playing solo a breeze. You can join groups in group play and tackle on bosses and harder enemies. It's highly recommended that you join Linkshell, which are guilds, in order to advance at higher levels. The community is quite good and people are very friendly and willing to help you out. There's been 5 expansion packs and a handful of addons released for this game. Many people still play it and it's far from dead.
You will have to jump through quite a bit of hoops just to get this game up and running though. You'll have to activate the game on Square Enix's home page Playonline and that does take quite a while. You'll have to also update the game a few times too through THEIR service and not through Steam. Needless to say you probably won't be playing the game on the 1st day you activate it.
The graphics are old and the game play is different. Though you CAN use a controller to play the game, but the game is still enjoyable with a mild learning curve. It's not like WoW and like games with combat. In FFXI it's more of a turn based game. After you win a battle you won't just acquire loot either. You'll have to pick locks and/or use combinations on locks in order to open them to get loot. You can fail this and get nothing.
Fun game and worth a try. You can grab the COMPLETE version of this game with all expansions, addons and DLC usually for $20 and the 1st month is free. Recommended for die hard old school Final Fantasy players.