Since my friends and I have started playing FF14 again, I’ve been thinking about my first experience with the game. In short, FF14 is extremely complex. This is incredibly overwhelming at first, but winds up providing you with a lot to do later on. I figured I would take this opportunity to give a few quick-start guides.
You start out the game by designing your character’s appearance, a few defining traits, and selecting a class:
- Conjurer – Healer (White Mage)
- Arcanist – Magic Damage + Pets (Summoner) / Healer + Pets (Scholar)
- Thaumaturge – Magic Damage (Black Mage)
- Archer – Ranged Damage (Bard)
- Pugilist – Melee Damage (Monk)
- Lancer – Melee Damage (Dragoon)
- Marauder – Tank (Warrior)
- Gladiator – Tank (Paladin)
If you’re a fan of the Final Fantasy series, you’ll recognize these classes. For the most part they do pretty much what you’d think they would do. The jobs in parenthesis represent the evolution of the starting classes that you unlock at level 30. For now Arcanist is the only class with two evolutions, and they both level up with your Arcanist level.
There’s several different means of leveling:
- Main Story Quest – This series of quests will lead you through the main story of the game; these objectives are indicated with flame circle icons
- Quests – Quests are indicated with a “Q” icon above the heads of NPCs
- Hunt Logs – Each level bracket for each class has a set of monsters for you to track down; completing individual entries rewards a small amount of bonus experience, and completing a bracket awards a large bonus
- FATEs – Local events that spawn on a timer in various locations around a map
- Dungeons/Duty Finder – Running dungeons (level 15+), especially through the Duty Roulette, is a great way to get experience and potentially some really good gear
- Levequests – Repeatable quests that are similar to dailies in other days; you accumulate 3 allowances every 12 hours
For the most part you’ll just want to follow your Main Story Quest around and supplement your experience when necessary. Since coming back I’ve found a lot of success with the Duty Roulette. As a Bard I would queue up for it and do some FATEs while I waited for my group to form.
One of the defining features of FF14 is that you can level up all of the classes on a single character, and in fact, this is exactly what you should do. Aside from the subscription being cheaper if you only have one character, there’s also abilities that can be used cross-class. Additionally, it helps to have a single character to collect gear on, especially when you can reuse it while leveling up other abilities.
There’s plenty of other stuff to get distracted with along the way, but for starters you should probably just focus on picking up one class and leveling it up a bit. I’ll go more into the intricacies of cross-classing and getting your evolved Jobs at level 30 in the next post :)