This sponsored post is presented by Square Enix.
For long-term Final Fantasy fans, there are few things more iconic than certain battle classes. Perhaps even more than chocobos, limit breaks and moogles, it’s the way that these classes work that defines a true Final Fantasy experience.
Over the course of the franchise’s venerated lifespan there are a number of class types that have stood the test of time, appearing time and time again (sometimes in various guises). Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn contains more classes and class variations than any other game in the series, acting as a celebration of the many playing styles that have been possible over the years. Here are some of the more important and iconic examples to appear in the MMO, each bringing with it a unique sense of heritage.
Perhaps the most iconic of all roleplaying game roles, the Warrior class is a safe bet for anyone coming to Final Fantasy afresh thanks to its generally high vitality and damage-dealing stats. The class plays in a relatively simple way, concentrated on melee attacks and attracting enemy attentions away from more vulnerable allies.
The class has been a Final Fantasy mainstay since the first game, giving it a history that few of its peers can match. Within the systems of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn the warrior appears as a job, unlocked by reaching level 30 as the Marauder class.
Another of the ever-present class options – alongside warriors and white mages – the black mage specialises in the casting of offensive magic. Therefore, it is very often the possessor of the most visually spectacular attacks.
Fire, ice and lightning spells are the core components of a black mage’s toolset, acting as the base attacks that are upgradable over time. However, they tend to come with extremely limited levels of health and, therefore, it’s vital to quickly master the art of positioning yourself on the battlefield to keep a safe distance from adversaries.
To play as a black mage you must reach level 30 as a thaumaturge.
The yang to the black mage’s yin, white mages excel in healing and protecting their party allies. Aeris, Banon, Yuna… some of the most famous characters to have ever graced this series fall into the white mage class.
Oftentimes the white mage represents the only efficient means of keeping your allies alive without having to rely on potions that, in some instances, can be very costly. However, the lack of an offensive threat means playing solo as a white mage can be extremely difficult and frustrating.
You can opt to play as a white mage in Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn by reaching level 30 as a conjurer. It is advisable to have a skilled white mage in your group when attempting difficult dungeons and any sort of high-level group activities.
One of the new Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn job classes to arrive in the upcoming Heavensward expansion, the dark knight works as a tank that excels in the absorption of damage and provoking of enemies.
For a number of years, between the releases of Final Fantasy IV and X-2, the class fell out of fashion as far as the ‘main’ releases were concerned. However, it has made constant appearances in the franchise’s spinoff titles – Bravely Default, Dissidia, Crystal Chronicles etc – and continues to enjoy popularity, not least because of its trademark black armour.
One of Final Fantasy’s founding classes, the paladin is a combination knight and white mage, its powerful melee attacks supplemented by a limited set of healing magic.
The paladin is one of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn’s tank options, brilliant at soaking up the pressure and affording more technical classes the time and space to make use of their own abilities.
It’s one of the most powerful classes in game, unlocked by reaching level 30 as a gladiator, and very able to hold its own as a solo class. Therefore, the gladiator is a good option for both Final Fantasy newcomers and MMO virgins.
A master of gadgetry, the machinist is more able than other classes to wield mechanical and high-tech gear. Naturally, then, machinists tend to be characterised by their reliance on guns and turrets.
The machinist joins the dark knight as a Final Fantasy XIV newcomer, available as a job class within the Heavensward expansion. Its ability to wield firearms makes it an effective long-range option, with many of its attacks focused on delivering damage over time – weakening your prey to allow melee specialist to finish it off more quickly.
While it didn’t first appear until Final Fantasy III, the bard has become a staple member of the series’ roster. It is very powerful in a support role, with many of its abilities revolving around the idea of singing to induce positive status effects across the party (quite a bit like the Hunting Horn user in Monster Hunter).
As a subset of the Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn’s archer class, the bard is endowed with a host of long-range moves and is best positioned on the outskirts of battle. What it gains in distance attacks, it loses in health provision – making it important for its allies to keep a close eye on its hit points.
Acquired by working up the lancer class to level 30, the dragoon is a medium-range melee fighter that specialises in the in wielding of spears, trident and similar.
While not officially labelled as a dragoon, Cid Highwind of Final Fantasy VII is one of the more famous examples of a class that has been around since the second game. Many other characters of the ‘Highwind’ name have appeared throughout the series, the vast majority of them in ownership of traits associated with the dragoon class.
This sponsored post is presented by Square Enix.