FFXIV – A Pre-Announcement Post

So the live letter from the producer, the big one discussing class and battle system changes, is upon us. I believe it is tomorrow at 3PM EST. Fair warning, my post Friday will likely be about that, particularly the parts I find interesting and/or impact me and my general opinion of them.

Unfortunately, I did not quite manage to cap my last healer, though I am in the mid 60s now, so probably only another week.

Here’s a rundown of what I expect to see, or what could happen. This is literally just guessing, with little to no basis in reality.

  • Tanks
    • So I’ve only played one of the tank jobs in the game, really, and it’s hard to comment on the ones I’ve literally never played. The biggest thing I’m interested in is how strongly they change things to create the Main Tank/Off Tank scheme they seem to be pushing. I believe the expected line is War/Drk – Main, Pal/Gun – Off.
    • Warrior – I don’t expect to see much change here. If anything, I suspect they will find some way to tone down its DPS in favor of more mitigation. I’m not familiar enough with the job to say much regarding ability changes. The only reason I suspect they might add more mitigation is because the main tank is the one that’s supposed to be eating the big tank busters.
    • Paladin – So, I’ve been asking myself what the off tank’s job is in most content. Pick up adds, intercept certain attacks, tank swap when needed, and other than that, be another DPS. Again, I’m not familiar with this job, but by design they would be doing most eight-man content without tank stance. If it wasn’t for the fact that most content is a group of four, I would almost wonder if they’d consider removing the Oaths altogether and doing something different.
    • Dark Knight – This is the one I know, though I haven’t played it much in the last year. I was doing the raids with this job before I stopped playing, though. The main complaint I see only is that people don’t like the fact that you’re constantly using Dark Arts while the global cooldown is ticking down. It’s a solid main tank though, if not quite as DPS heavy as Warrior. People really seem to underestimate the power of The Blackest Night, which in my opinion is one of the best single-hit defensive cooldowns in the game. When I was running raids mine would eat about 12K points of damage and it could be used every 15 seconds. You know, if you weren’t spamming Dark Arts, that is. If I tank in ShB, I will probably continue using this job.
    • Gunbreaker – I’m expecting a Paladin, but with a Machinist ammo mechanic.[UPDATE: After I wrote this, I saw the new class icon and it made me think maybe we should expect a debuff tank.]
  • Healers
    • White Mage – A lot of people feel that White Mage is the “weakest” healer, which I don’t actually agree with. I can see why people might feel like it brings less to the table in raids, where Holy isn’t particularly useful, but in dungeons I find that I miss having it. The DPS plus the short-term mitigation of stun-locking an entire pack of mobs is hard to outdo. I expect to see an overall potency increase to push it well into the monstrously huge heals category. Not exactly what it needs, but what I expect. I would love to see it get a stronger, better, and/or cheaper form of Raise.
    • Scholar – I literally have no idea what they can, would, or should do with Scholar. It’s in a good place right now, I just don’t feel very effective when I’m using it. I love those shields, though. I’m detecting a personal trend of “I like abilities that prevent damage.”
    • Astrologian – Right now, I have two thoughts. One is that I haven’t quite unlocked the new feature the class got in Stormblood, so I’m not sure what the whole toolkit looks like. The second is that one of the cards, The Spire, is a TP regen buff and we know we’re getting TP removed, so what will that card do now? Thematically HP regen might work, but at that point it would almost make more sense to put regen on Bole and move Defence to The Spire. If I heal for ShB this is the job I will use.
  • DPS
    • I have a lot less to say here and we’re starting to run a bit long, so I’ll pick up the pace and leave some of them out.
    • Summoner – One of the least popular DPS classes, but ironically one of the most powerful. I expect they will do absolutely nothing about its super long rotation, but give some form of upgraded Bahamut to replace the existing one. If they do add an additional stage, I would hope that they will add a way to shorten the initial Bahamut launch time.
    • Bard/Machinist/Dancer – With the removal of TP, I think having Refresh handy is going to become somewhat more important. Of course, I’m also assuming that AoE attack spam will now consume MP
    • Black Mage – Meteor.
    • Raise Mage – Sorry, meant to type Red Mage, not sure how that happened. I actually think this job is also in a really good place. It’s fairly easy to pick up, though not fool-proof, has great DPS and a good bit of utility. Also commonly referred to as a Prog Mage.

I’m hoping we’ll get some more changes to Role Actions as well. Some of the current things don’t make a lot of sense. The primary tank cooldown, Rampart, is a role action available to all tanks. Why, then, do we have three different resurrection abilities when they all do the same thing for the same cost?

Okay, we’re approaching the 1,000 word mark and I try not to run on quite that long. Y’all take care, and I look forward to talking about this at length in a couple of days.

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