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I don't see why this is such a disaster. The render of Lightning will attract gamers who aren't familiar with FF, unlike a plain cover with just the logo (though I personally liked that as well).
Let's go to the sea, before sunrise.
The city lights go out, one by one, the stars fade, then the horizon glows, almost like it's on fire.
It's kinda rose-colored, right? First the sea, then it spreads to the sky, then the whole city.
It gets brighter and brighter till everything glows.
It's really pretty. I know you'd like it.
It's just the fact that it's another FF tradition. Same as Chocobo's, airships, summons, Cid etc. It's one of those things that has been a part of the Final Fantasy franchise for as long as it's been out. In Europe anyway. And now it's changed and it just separates it that much more from the traditional FF's. The cover is nice, but it just doesn't feel like Final Fantasy.