Important Final Fantasy XIV Guides for New Players
Final Fantasy XIV is a massively popular MMORPG that has been around for more than a decade. Whether you're a long-time fan or a newcomer, you'll find that the game is vastly different from other MMOs and even other Final Fantasy games.
First off, there are two ways to get started: playing the free trial or buying the full game. The free trial will give you access to the base game, A Realm Reborn, and the first expansion, Heavensward, totaling around 200 hours of story content, and you won't have to pay a subscription. However, there are restrictions in place for free trial players, such as not being able to use the market board or join free companies.
If you decide to buy the full game, you'll have access to everything it has to offer right from the start. You'll also get 30 days of subscription for free, so you can cancel anytime if you decide it's not for you.
Unlike other RPGs, Final Fantasy 14 lets you multi-class on one character. You can unlock and swap between different classes by changing your soul crystal. You can start your adventure in Aldenard and choose between the Gladiator (sword-wielding), Pugilist (fist-fighting), and Thaumaturge (staff-waving) classes. In Gridania, you can choose between the Lancer, Conjurer's staff, and Archer's bow and arrow. Finally, in Limsa Lominsa, you can choose between the Marauder (ax-wielding), Arcanist (magical), and Rogue (limbs) classes. You can also unlock the Rogue limbs of Limsa Lominsa, but you can't start the game as one.
These classes eventually evolve into jobs, usually around level 30. The Gladiator becomes a Paladin, the Marauder evolves into a Warrior, the Pugilist becomes a Monk, the Dragoon is born of the Lancer, the Archers become Bards, the Arcanist can become either a Summoner or a Scholar, and the Conjurer and Thaumaturge become White and Black Mages, respectively.
Once you've gotten your first combat class up to level 10 and completed your third class-specific quest, you're free to try any of the other classes or jobs in the game. If you started as an Archer but want to give healing a shot, visit the Conjurer's guild in Gridania and start on the path of a White Mage. If tanking is a little too stressful, switch to a Summoner or a Bard and learn the boss mechanics to bring him down from a distance. You'll get double experience points for any class that's a lower level than your highest level class.
Play with friends on different servers
You can also make alternate characters if you want to play with friends on different servers, and there are no drawbacks to playing multiple classes or jobs, so feel free to try anything that catches your eye. Just keep in mind that the Paladin, Warrior, White Mage, and Scholar require a bit more effort to master than the others, as they have to either tank enemy mobs or keep the party healed up.
In addition to doing damage outside of battle, Final Fantasy 14 also has a robust crafting system to let you create everything from weapons and armor to food and jewelry. Just like with other jobs, you'll have to level your first combat class up to 10 to unlock them. There are eight crafting jobs and three gathering jobs in total, so you have plenty of options to choose from. The system is more complicated than in many other RPGs, though, so we've put together a separate beginner's guide to crafting and gathering that you can check out once you've got your feet under you.
Before you commit to running a dungeon for yourself, you may want to take a small detour to the Hall of the Novice. You'll reach this series of small challenges naturally by progressing the main story, but you can visit it earlier if you want. Once you hit level 15, just talk to the smith NPC in your starting city's Adventurer's Guild. You'll be spending a lot of your time in Final Fantasy 14 clearing dungeons and bosses, and the Hall of the Novice is a great way to learn dungeon mechanics like MD (Mob Density) and targeting, which is who your enemies are focused on and which enemies you're focused on, respectively. You'll also earn a free set of gear and a lot of FFXIV GIL for completing them all, along with a ring that provides a nice XP boost until you hit level 30. There are unique trials for each role, so if you're switching to a new one, be sure to check back and see if there's more to learn.
Once you've gotten yourself comfortable with the mechanics of your preferred class, you're ready to hop into your first dungeon—Sastasha, which will unlock
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