Fans of Final Fantasy style RPGs. should look into picking up Lost Odyssey. It's a fantastic game with a surprisingly well-told and emotional story. It's not innovative or anything, but it's definitely good if you like traditional Japanese RPGs.
Incidentally, when did that become a bad thing? A lot of websites and magazines are not giving this game high ratings because they say that it has random battles and plays like something from 1998. I'd rather have that kind of game than the action RPG like KOTOR, Oblivion, or Mass Effect.
Also, don't believe the hype about poor loading times. The review copies given to the magazines and websites had loading issues, but the final copies for sale are fine. The loading times are no longer than any of the Final Fantasy games.
You know, I have never ACTUALLY pre-oredered a game before... Do they make you pay all at once? Or does it work like Blockbuster, where you plop down $5 and pay the rest when you pick it up? What is the schedules release date?