is there a way to map a xbox 360 controller to work on pc (have tried loads of things cant get working)
The controller is set up in the FFXI config program outside of the game. XBOX style annalog triggers won't work with the config client, but other buttons should be mapped there.
is there a better key map setup and the default one seems very clumsy
Compact keyboard settings are more like other MMO keyboard controls, that setting is found inside the game itself in config > misc 2.
is there a good guide for new playes as in what to do first where to go as there is no in game guidance at all
Best to ask all parties you join if anyone has a social LS you can join
how does guild/clan system work(if there is one)
They're called Linkshells (LS). You equip them in the linkshell menu and you can switch between as many as you like.
whats a good high population server
They're all the same. Starter cities are ghost towns on all servers, you'll see more people when you make it to Jeuno