My Issue with FF12 was how vapid the storyline and plot felt, and how slow it moved. They literally fed the player a few lines and then sent you into a dungeon that lasted hours. It was like spreading a tiny little sliver of butter over a piece of toast to the point where you couldn't taste it anymore.
Also those chests you weren't supposed to open? What the fuck.
Also, gameplay, really? More like set up a bunch of gambits and run around while watching Friends reruns.
The setting up gambits part was what I liked. I mean, that pretty much was the gameplay right? Setting up the gambits for whatever you were trying to accomplish at the time. I'm definitely not in the camp that needs to press "Fight" 100 times, I like the streamlining that the FF series are going for, even if the execution is pretty damn far from perfect. Your point about the watching Friends reruns while running around for example is well taken - if you're going to streamline the combat process with things like gambits (good idea), why do I still need to grind at all (bad idea). Pick a theme and stick with it.
But I thought the boss fights were very fun, trying to tweak your gambits correctly and maximize damage and such I actually did enjoy, especially trying to get things just right for some of the hidden bosses.
There is really nothing I can say to defend the plot - it's pretty silly. But again I'm definitely the gaming type that is more than willing to overlook a dumb plot if I'm enjoying the gameplay itself. There's exceptions that cut both ways on that obviously - a superb story + terrible gameplay, well, I'll suffer through the game if I simply must know what happens next.
But given the option I'll take superb gameplay with horrible plot every time.