FFXIV: Trying Alt Jobs – Part II

The past couple of days I’ve been following my plan – unlocking alt jobs that I was eager to play and making my first steps from starting level, with all of them.

First of all, I’ve decided I would settle with DPS until I really, really have nothing else to do. Acquiring Astrologian, trying to play it for a bit made me realize something I knew beforehand and from my WoW experience: yes, I could play tanks and healers, and even be a success doing so, but do I want to? Do I have fun playing tank and healer alts or alt jobs? And the answer is: no.

Yes, if you enjoy these roles, FFXIV has all the range of different classes/jobs with different playing styles – be my guest! But personally, I’m feeling excited and comfortable at my DPS camp, allowing me to focus on my rotation and admire the boss encounters and dungeon design in my own pace, without feeling too stressful about my mistakes. The game is supposed to be fun, isn’t it, that’s why we play them, and if tanks and healers are simply not for me, no one makes me to play them. So… yeah, DPS it is.

Sanya Ginsu – the miqo’te character – and you could call her “main” as she finished the story – is most active today. Her dragoon is well packed after MSQ and waiting for Endwalker, now occasionally picking a blue cross quest to see if there are any discoveries left (and they are left, no shit).

Yesterday I went for what was supposed to be a side raid fight, Cinder Drift, which unraveled later to: visiting a Greece-like uncharted country, exploring Gaius past and present with personal attachments, and an Evangelion-style mecha vehicle encounter, with a hint of extra raids incoming. How much stuff like that is hidden in the corners?

Don’t worry, I’m gonna bleed the content dry when time comes. If a new player came to WoW, he’d find himself in the very same situation, tons of decade-accumulated content to explore and stories to learn.

Anyways, back to alt jobs. Sanya picked these side jobs: Monk, Samurai and Dancer, and currently enjoying all of them.

Samurai is a bit lower on the list of enjoyment, because in a darker dungeon you can’t see shit what your character is doing, and katana slashes by themselves are not that spectacular to observe from behind (if you turn the camera to see your toon from flank or from a boss perspective – why, yes). But the job’s rotation is perfectly clear, has variety and total control of what exactly you want to dish out, so yes, I’ll be leveling it.

Dancer – I barely made a level, but it was quite full of events, and I got a grip of the job, now feeling quite confident about it too. I’m totally buying the proc-based gameplay, the spec is spetacular, and just you wait till I get more gear to make it feel powerful (rings and such are still mostly on level 1-20, and I have neither gold nor tokens to upgrade, so need to wait till it comes naturally). It’s also an interesting job by psychological means: for example, as you play dragoon, you smash your keyboard buttons hard – apparently, to increase the damage output of your blows, lol, feels that way. With Dancer, I press all my abilities buttons as light as possible, it’s just the design of the job feels so light and airy :) So yes, whenever I need a ranged spec, for this character it’s Dancer, period. Mobile, fast, flashy and exciting.

Monk – is where I put most of my time today. I can’t get enough from Bootshine and Demolish abilities – to press one button means to see a spectacular martial combo, which is so rewarding. The gameplay in general feels powerful, flavored and totally comprehended, and I easily see how this could be my main job, if only there was no spear-themed class :) Anyways, I’m most excited to take it to the skies of top levels, and this is what I’m actually doing.

Lolo Poppa – my Lalafell – is occasionally doing a couple of quests to push the MSQ forward with an excellent Machinist, her main job, but she started exploring other jobs too. It’s less exciting than the previous listed ones, still I’m having my share of fun here.

I’m still planning to resume leveling Black Mage someday, because it’s unique among other game mages, and it has Exploooooo-shun, even if I grumble at the ley lines thing. Yet I don’t think it’s gonna be my main job anymore.

I started Rogue-to-be-Ninja, and it’s ok yet by level 7. Not very excited – at least it’s not the love from first sight as Monk was – but still a valid option. I find it quite traditional (read: boring) so far, but of course I need to see it with more abilities.

And the final job I’ve started playing is Arcanist/Summoner. Rumor flashed through the comments that I could keep squirrel pets instead of primals at higher levels, so I grudgingly commited. Point is – at level 7 – it feels exactly like WoW’s affliction warlock, ctrl+c, ctrl+v. I’ve got 3 nuking spells, and I’m always quite surprised why two of them don’t have Unstable Affliction and Corruption names and icons, because it’s exactly the same: apply a couple of DoTs (one insta-cast, one with a casting time) and use a direct nuking filler.

There are another two things that bug me with a Summoner. First, pet: it does not tank, but it does AoE by default. In practice, this means that when you go for a hunting log or a quest, it would aggro half of the area with its AoE spell, won’t keep aggro, and you spend most of your gameplay running in circles from the bands of mobs, on the brink of survival and frantically trying to kill them before they will.

Well, I presume later I get more kinds of demons, hopefully with tanking ability and which allow to perform precision kills, because today it’s hilarious, but frankly a shitshow. Second, as I wrote previously, I’m not a cackling, evil person, and operating spells labeled like ruin and miasma is kinda cringe, but I could live with that. Yet spell names are a lesser problem, with a not-original rotation so far and a pet which was designed to mess with your rather than help :) I’ll see you on higher levels, then we talk again.

Anyways, two characters, 4 dps jobs each – I feel like I’m packed with my share of interesting jobs and playing styles, let’s settle with that for now. Maybe there will be time for both WoW and FFXIV lulls, then I will revisit the remaining jobs and maybe even tanks and healers, but today I feel like I have it all, and eager to level all of them at any given moment.

2 thoughts on “FFXIV: Trying Alt Jobs – Part II

  1. Without saying much more, the Gaius stuff (which comprises the whole trial run post-launch for Shadowbringers) is excellent storytelling and will likely be valuable context in Endwalker. You’re right to wonder how much stuff like that is hidden – each expansion has its Trials in questlines such as that, although I think that the story told in the Shadowbringers chain is by far the best. Once you’re done with the MSQ, finding every blue-plus-sign quest is next on a good to-do list – there’s a lot of really great sidestories to explore, most of which link back to the main story in some capacity!

    On the jobs, I do like Black Mage but I generally agree about Ley Lines, but I will say that Rogue -> Ninja is worth holding out for. When you upgrade to Ninja, the job changes to be very action-heavy in a fun way, including learning jutsu combos where you have to use your 3 jutsu buttons in a set of combinations to trigger special abilities. You can get it wrong and get to wear a bunny on your head when you do, but the basic combos are easy enough and the flow is quite learnable.

    Dancer is probably the most WoW-like job in FFXIV – it’s very heavily proc based, with a lot of utility and good damage output even when procs aren’t on your side. If you enjoy specs in WoW with a lot of those twists, Dancer is well worth a look!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, there’s a lot of content to catch up for a decade – I’m not doing only raid/blue quest stuff, in fact, I’m planning to mow through EVERY side quest and quest hub until I have nothing left – these are great flavor and world building stuff, even level 1-10 hubs from ARR content.

      Alt jobs – I stick with those I listed, yes, at least until they’re properly shaped.

      Liked by 1 person

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