the CoP storyline was so complicated that people had to go back and watch the cutscenes after finishing it just to sort of grasp what was going on
Well, that doesn't really speak for the way the story was presented in the first place, does it?
Well, it was more that people were told to spam through the cutscenes to get to the fight - and if you lost, you had to smash the enter key again. People were in such a hurry to get to the fight that they didn't even read what the characters were saying.
SE corrected this in Wings of the Goddess by having the pre-fight cutscene be a separate event, so people could watch the CS on their own time then all go in the fight together.