FFXIV Classes and Jobs Beginner’s Guide

FFXIV Classes and Jobs Beginner’s Guide by TROPiCALRUBi

FFXIV has many classes and it can sometimes be overwhelming to choose one because you’re new to the game and you don’t know which class fits your play style the best! Here’s a quick rundown of every class that the game has to offer.

FFXIV is an MMORPG with a holy-trinity class system. This means the classes are divided into 3 roles: Tanks, Healers, and Damage Dealers (DPS for short). The job of the tank is to make sure the only person in the party taking damage is themselves. The job of the healer is to keep everyone alive, and the role of DPS is to do damage.

The class system in FFXIV is unique. You start out as a “Base Class” and you evolve that class into a “Job” at level 30. Only Jobs are used at endgame, as they are superior in every way to their class counterparts. There are even some Jobs that don’t start as classes, but I’ll get into that in a bit. Let’s begin!


The tank is my personal favorite role to play in MMORPG’s. They have a duty to protect the party and make sure all the attention (also known as “enmity” or “hate”) is on them. A good tank will even put out respectable damage. Tanks are also usually referred to as the “leader” of the group. They decide when to attack, when to rest, and are generally looked up to. Tanks usually wear heavy armor and have higher than normal HP. They also have an arsenal of abilities which reduce damage taken. There are three tank classes in FFXIV.



Base Class: Gladiator

Requirements: 30 Gladiator/15 Conjurer

Weapon: Sword and Shield

Main Stat: Vitality

Abbreviation: PLD

“For centuries, the elite of the Sultansworn have served as personal bodyguards to the royal family of Ul’dah. Known as paladins, these men and women marry exquisite swordplay with stalwart shieldwork to create a style of combat uncompromising in its defense. Clad in brilliant silver armor, they charge fearlessly into battle, ever ready to lay down their lives for their liege. To be a paladin is to protect, and those who choose to walk this path will become the iron foundation upon which the party’s defense is built.”

The Paladin is a moderate HP tank with unmatched physical damage mitigation. (Thanks to your shield!) They make use of many, many abilities which reduce damage taken. They even have moves which allow you to directly take physical damage for another party member. The PLD has 2 stances: Sword Oath and Shield Oath. Shield Oath buffs your defenses while lowering your attack strength and Sword Oath increases the damage of your auto attacks. At higher levels, Paladins get a very strong heal that they can use on themselves or allies. One of their best abilities is called “Hallowed Ground”. It makes them completely invincible for 10 seconds. It should also be noted that PLD’s do the least amount of damage out of any tank. The Paladin is an all-around solid choice for a tank and is also a great beginner Job, as it is easy to play in the later levels.



Base Class: Marauder

Requirements: 30 Marauder/15 Gladiator (22 Gladiator for Provoke)

Weapon: Greataxe

Main Stat: Vitality

Abbreviation: WAR

“On the northernmost edge of Abalathia’s Spine exists a mountain tribe renowned for producing fearsome mercenaries. Wielding greataxes and known as warriors, these men and women learn to harness their inner-beasts and translate that power to unbridled savagery on the battlefield. In former times which saw war waged ceaselessly in Eorzea, the warriors featured prominently on the frontlines of battle. With the arrival of peacetime, however, their art has descended into the shadows of obscurity, where it remains to this day.”

The Warrior is a very-high HP tank that has does not over-excel in either Physical or Magical defense, but rather in damage and self-healing. They have 2 stances: Defiance and Deliverance. Defiance reduces damage dealt by 25%, increases max HP by 25%, and increases HP recovery via healing magic by 20%. Deliverance increases your damage dealt by 5%. The Warrior, hands down, does the most damage out of any tank. This makes Warrior a fantastic off-tank. (In fights with 8 players, there are 2 tanks. The tank not currently keeping the bosses attention is called the off-tank) Warriors have a move called “Holmgang” which makes it so they can’t drop below 1 HP for 6 seconds. WAR is a bit harder to play than the PLD later on, but it is an easier Job to start out as. I would still recommend it for new players.

Dark Knight


Base Class: None (Starts at level 30)

Requirements: Purchase Heavensward, attain level 50 on one Job, and complete the entire “Vanilla” FFXIV storyline. (22 Gladiator for Provoke)

Weapon: Greatsword

Main Stat: Vitality

Abbreviation: DRK

“The pious Ishgardian clergy guide the flock, and the devout knights protect the weak. Yet even the holiest of men succumb to the darkest of temptations. None dare to administer justice to these sacrosanct elite residing outside the reach of the law. Who, then, defends the feeble from the transgressions of those meant to guide and protect them? A valiant few take up arms to defend the downtrodden, and not even the holy priests and knights can escape their judgment. Pariahs in their own land, they are known by many as “dark knights.” These sentinels bear no shields declaring their allegiance. Instead, their greatswords act as beacons to guide the meek through darkness.”

The Dark Knight is a moderate HP tank with very good magical damage mitigation. Their playstyle involves heavy MP management, decision making, and micromanagement. What’s unique about DRK is that their tank and their damage stances (Grit and Darkside) are both active at the same time. Despite this, they do a bit less damage than WAR, but still more damage than PLD. Darkside constantly drains your MP. A good DRK will never let Darkside fall off. Dark Knights have an ability called “Dark Arts” which consumes 1/4 of their maximum MP and enhances the next ability they use. You can use this for extra defense, or for an offensive advantage. They also have a decent amount of lifesteal. Finally, DRK’s have a move called “Living Dead”. It makes it so they can’t fall below 1 HP for 10 seconds but the DRK will die if he isn’t healed for hismax HP before the 10 seconds is up. I would not recommend DRK to new tanks, due to their high skillcap and instant level 30 start.


The healer is a role that has alot of responsibility. They have no make sure everyone stays alive. If someone goes down, their job is to resurrect them back into battle. A good healer will keep everyone alive. A great healer will do the same, but also deal as much damage as they can in their downtime. Think you’re up to it? Let’s take a look at FFXIV’s 3 healers.

White Mage


Base Class: Conjurer

Requirements: 30 Conjurer/15 Arcanist (26 Thaumaturge for Swiftcast)

Weapon: Cane

Main Stat: Mind

Abbreviation: WHM

“White magic, the arcane art of succor, was conceived eras past that the world might know comfort. Alas, man began perverting its powers for self-gain, and by his wickedness brought about the Sixth Umbral catastrophe. Although the art subsequently became forbidden, it is now in the midst of a revival at the hands of the Padjal, chosen of the elementals. Those who would walk the path of the white mage are healers without peer, possessed of the power to deliver comrades from the direst of afflictions—even the icy grip of death itself.”

The White Mage is a very reactive healer and has the best raw heals in the game. It has an arsenal of HP regeneration abilities as well. WHM’s have a limited supply of MP, but it can be refreshed by using abilities called “Shroud of Saints” and “Assize”. Perfecting your MP management is the key to being a good WHM. If you’re looking for a healer that can also do a decent amount of burst damage, then WHM is for you. They have a move called “Cleric Stance” which swaps their healing power with their damage power. It’s quite effective when used by a skilled player. It’s also worth noting that the other healing Jobs can cross-class Cleric Stance as well. One of their best healing moves is called “Benediction” which instantly restores all of the target’s HP. WHM is great for new players because they are very simple to play early on.




Base Class: Arcanist

Requirements: 30 Arcanist/15 Conjurer (26 Thaumaturge for Swiftcast)

Weapon: Book

Main Stat: Mind

Abbreviation: SCH

“In an age long past, when mankind flourished under the radiance of arcane mastery, the island of Vylbrand was home to a city-state called Nym. Though the history of that age tells of countless wars waged with earth-shattering incantations, it was the brilliant strategic maneuvering of Nym’s scholars that allowed their mundane army of mariners to throw back would-be conquerers time and again. These learned men and women defended the freedom of their tiny nation with their unique command over spell-weaving faeries, utilizing the creatures’ magicks to heal the wounded and bolster the strength of their allies.”

Scholars are masterful tacticians of the battlefield that heal alongside their fairy pet. SCH’s are known for their large shields and proactive playstyle. They have an ability called “Aetherflow” which allows them to restore MP and use certain healing abilities every 60 seconds. This means that SCH’s have alot less MP problems than WHM. SCH’s can also dish out the most damage out of any healer. Their main source of damage is from their DoTs (damage over time attacks) that can be spread and can constantly deal damage while the SCH is busy healing. The SCH is one of the hardest Jobs to play in my opinion, simply because of all the micromanaging that has to be done. I would however, recommend SCH to new players, because they aren’t hard to learn, they’re just very, very hard to master.



Base Class: None (Starts at level 30)

Requirements: Purchase Heavensward, attain level 50 on one Job, and complete the entire “Vanilla” FFXIV storyline. (26 Thaumaturge for Swiftcast/6 Conjurer for Cleric Stace)

Weapon: Starglobe

Main Stat: Mind

Abbreviation: AST

“Ever has man coveted knowledge, and none more so than that of his fate. Thus did he labor to master the skill of foresight—but initial efforts bore little fruit. That is, until he looked to the stars above, which foretell the coming seasons, and learned to read the heavens. Though this gift is known today as astrology, the people of Sharlayan saw fit to not only read the stars, but to write their movements as well. By attuning their aetherial energies to that of constellations, they learned to wield magicks with heretofore unseen properties. Thus was astromancy born—a new form of magick which grants its users power over fate. Employing a star globe and divining deck in their miraculous deeds, fortune always smiles upon these masters of arcana.”

The Astrologian is very reminiscent of a healing time mage. They can heal in either a regeneration or a shielding stance and they regen MP with a move called “Luminiferous Aether”. The AST’s main gimmick though, is their “Draw” system. Once every 30 seconds, the AST can draw a random card and either store it, shuffle it, or enhance their next draw. There are 6 different cards and their buffs range from MP regen to increased damage. They can also extend the duration of these buffs (or even HP regeneration abilities) with a few of their time-oriented abilities. AST has cool damage abilities, but it does the least damage out of any healer. The AST is a very fun class and honestly isn’t insanely hard. (Definitely more difficult than WHM, though) If you’ve never healed before you can certainly give it a shot, just make sure you don’t get too overwhelmed!


This is the most commonly played role in FFXIV (or any MMO for that matter…) and for good reason. Nothing quite beats the feeling of getting a huge crit, or annihilating your enemy with your level 3 Limit Break. If you aren’t a fan of having alot of responsibility, DPS is the role for you. I don’t mean that in an insulting way or anything, alot of people truly hate having all that stress on them and I don’t blame them. Now, that isn’t to say that DPS aren’t as important as the other roles, because they are. At endgame, DPS have to deal the most amount of damage possible while also following mechanics and sometimes even helping out party members. Here are FFXIV’s 7 DPS Jobs.

Black Mage


Base Class: Thaumaturge

Requirements: 30 Thaumaturge/15 Archer

Weapon: Staff

Main Stat: Intelligence

Abbreviation: BLM

“In days long past, there existed an occult and arcane art known as black magic—a potent magic of pure destructive force born forth by a sorceress of unparalleled power. Those who learned to wield this instrument of ruin came to be called black mages, out of both fear and respect for their gift. Yet great power served to corrupt the judgment of mortal man, and so he unknowingly set out upon the path of ruin. Adventurers who take the black will become agents of devastation, capable of annihilating those who oppose them through little more than the force of their will.”

The Black Mage is a ranged magic caster that focuses on Fire, Ice, and Lightning. The class revolves around balancing buffs known as “Astral Fire” and “Umbral Ice”. (And in later levels Enochian, but you don’t have to worry about that right now) One buff regenerates your MP while the other makes you do more damage at the cost of more MP. The BLM is very burst-oriented, meaning they only attack once every 2.5-3 seconds, but the amount of damage they do in a single attack is very high. They also have fantastic AoE (area of effect) damage. BLM’s can also zip around the battlefield by teleporting to their allies. If you like huge flashy attacks, while also being a stationary turret, BLM is for you.



Base Class: Arcanist

Requirements: 30 Arcanist/15 Thaumaturge (26 Thaumaturge for Swiftcast)

Weapon: Book

Main Stat: Intelligence

Abbreviation: SMN

“The beast tribes of Eorzea worship and summon forth beings known as primals, among which are Ifrit, Garuda, and Titan. Yet what is a god to one man is a demon to another, for the city-states of Eorzea see these beings as a grave threat to their collective survival. In times immemorial, there lived mages who had not only the power to summon the primals, but also the means to transmute the primals’ essences, thus binding them to their will. Known simply as summoners, the existence of these men and women and their arcane art have been all but lost to the ages.”

Summoners are the 2nd Job that Arcanist branches into. (the first being SCH) They can summon one of three pets that help you deal damage. Your main source of damage is your DoTs. At later levels, you get very flashy and bursty attacks similar to BLM, but gameplay still mostly revolves around DoTs. Alot of their abilities are instant cast, meaning they have decent mobility. SMN’s also use “Aetherflow”, but it gives them access to awesome damage abilities rather than healing ones. One of SMN’s pets is a tank, which makes them a fantastic solo class as well. They are the only DPS Job that can raise allies from the dead mid-combat. SMN has the best AoE damage in the game.



Base Class: Archer

Requirements: 30 Archer/15 Pugilist

Weapon: Bow

Main Stat: Dexterity

Abbreviation: BRD

“The word “bard” ordinarily puts folk in mind of those itinerant minstrels, fair of voice and nimble of finger, who earn their coin performing in taverns and the halls of great lords. Few know, however, that bards in fact trace their origins back to the bowmen of eld, who sang in the heat of battle to fortify the spirits of their companions. In time, their impassioned songs came to hold sway over the hearts of men, inspiring their comrades to great feats and granting peace unto those who lay upon the precipice of death.”

The Bard is a very mobile ranged physical damage dealer that can play songs to buff their allies. (while sometimes lowering their damage as a consequence) At higher levels, they can play a song that turns them into a caster, giving them much less mobility but much higher damage. The mastery of that song is what determines a great BRD. They even have a song that can lower the magical resistance of their enemies, making them great when paired with a BLM or SMN.



Base Class: None (Starts at level 30)

Requirements: Purchase Heavensward, attain level 50 on one Job, and complete the entire “Vanilla” FFXIV storyline.

Weapon: Gun

Main Stat: Dexterity

Abbreviation: MCH

“The war with Dravania rages on, brutal and unrelenting. With no end in sight, the Holy See grows desperate. As her dragoons lay down their lives in defense of their home, Ishgard turns to technology to protect her sons and daughters. Great cannons and ballistae now line the city walls, plucking dragons from the sky. Following the example of Cid Garlond, who has demonstrated the potency of magitek, the Skysteel Manufactory works tirelessly on the development of advanced armaments. As new and devastating weapons are brought to the fray, a new class of champion arises to wield them―the machinist.”

The Machinist is very similar to the bard, but it does differ in some ways. The MCH can place a turret of his choice down on the battlefield to do damage. Turrets can also be switched to different modes that buff allies. Like Bard, MCH is a mobile physical damage dealer up until later levels, where they can put an attachment on their gun that makes them do more damage while giving their moves cast times. MCH doesn’t do the most damage of the DPS Jobs, but it has fantastic utility.



Base Class: Pugilist

Requirements: 30 Pugilist/15 Lancer

Weapon: Fists (Knuckles and Claws)

Main Stat: Strength

Abbreviation: MNK

“Though now under Garlean rule, the city-state of Ala Mhigo once boasted the greatest military might of all Eorzea. Among its standing armies were the monks—ascetic warriors as dreaded by foes on the field of battle as the city-state’s great pikemen. The monks comprised an order known as the Fist of Rhalgr, and it was to this god—the Destroyer—that they devoted their lives of worship. By mastering seats of power within the body known as chakra, they are capable of performing extraordinary physical feats.”

The Monk is a lightning fast melee DPS class that revolves around keeping up a buff called “Greased Lightning”. The MNK has great sustained DPS on a single target and does good AoE damage (at later levels). Most of MNK’s attacks are positional, meaning you have to move yourself to the back or side of the enemy, depending on the move you have to use next. It’s not required to follow your positionals, but they do alot more damage and will sometimes trigger ceertain effects. Mastery of positionals and timing is what makes a MNK great. If you like a fast paced technical melee class, you will really like MNK.



Base Class: Rogue

Requirements: 30 Rogue/15 Pugilist (Can’t start the game as a Rogue, must visit Rogue’s Guild after level 10 story quest)

Weapon: Daggers

Main Stat: Dexterity

Abbreviation: NIN

“Hailing from the war-torn lands of the Far East, the secret arts of the ninja were born of necessity, and have since given rise to a unique breed of highly-trained combatants. Able to manipulate the vital energies of the land, the air, and living beings, they manifest their power through the weaving of signs, unleashing a wide array of attacks against their foes. Master the arts of the ninja and learn to bend the tide of battle to your will.”

Ninjas are a stealthy melee DPS that can use a special ability known as “Ninjutsu.” By combining certain “mudras” together, NIN’s have a variety of Ninjutsus they can cast once every 20 seconds. (Aoe Damage, DoT, Attack Speed Buff, Burst Damage, Bind, etc…) Ninja has some unique moves that deal with enmity as well. They can take enmity off themselves, give it to someone else, and reduce hate generation on a party member. This makes them a great addition to any party. Ninjas can also use “hide” and walk around while invisible while not in combat. People have been known to use this to skip trash in certain raids. If you’re a fan of assassin classes, you should definitely give NIN a try.



Base Class: Lancer

Requirements: 30 Lancer/15 Marauder

Weapon: Lance

Main Stat: Strength

Abbreviation: DRG

“Of all the things that are symbolic of the nation of Ishgard, few are more recognized than the dragoon. Born amidst the timeless conflict between men and dragons, these lance-wielding knights have developed an aerial style of combat, that they might better pierce the scaled hides of their mortal foes. Taking to the firmament as though it were an extension of the land, they descend upon the enemy with every onze of their bodies behind the blow. It is this penetrative power that characterizes the dragoon.”

Dragoon. The poster-boys of Heavensward. These guys wear incredibly cool looking armor and carry their lances to slay any dragons they come across. Their gameplay involves some buff juggling, some positional damaging, (similar to MNK) and jumping. They have many different jumps that allow you to dive back down and crush your enemies. Dragoons are more of a bursty melee DPS and can do a very good amount of AoE damage. They also have a piercing debuff they can place on enemies that benefits Jobs such as BRD and MCH.

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