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Which Ones are the most effective as main tanks in FFXIV, 2023?

Are you trying to decide which tank job is best suited for the main tank role in high-end content like extreme savages and ultimate raids in Final Fantasy XIV? This guide will help you understand the strengths and weaknesses of each tank job, allowing you to make an informed decision based on their abilities and utility. Keep in mind that this guide assumes you're familiar with tanking mechanics and basic tank rotations.



Which Ones are the most effective as main tanks in FFXIV, 2023?



In this guide, we will compare the four tank jobs in FFXIV – Warrior, Paladin, Gunbreaker, and Dark Knightto determine which ones are the most effective as main tanks. The comparison will focus on each job's ability to sustain themselves and utilize their kit during main tanking. Note that this information is geared towards high-end content, and we won't cover basic tank swaps and tank busters.


Warrior: The Stalwart Main Tank

Warrior is renowned for being an excellent main tank due to its powerful mitigation and self-sustaining abilities.

Warrior The Stalwart Main Tank Screenshot

  • Bloodbath: This ability provides 10% mitigation for 8 seconds and offers a barrier with 400 potency. Additionally, it restores HP through GCDs, making it a potent self-sustain tool.
  • Nascent Flash: This ability duplicates the effects of Bloodbath and applies them to another party member. It's a valuable off-tank utility and can also be used for shared busters.
  • Thrill of Battle: This skill increases the Warrior's max HP by 20% and restores the same amount. With Equilibrium, it offers substantial self-sustainability potential.
  • Equilibrium: This ability heals the Warrior for 1200 potency and provides a regen effect for 15 seconds. The healing potency is increased by Thrill of Battle, making it a powerful tool for self-sustain.


Warrior's versatile toolkit and off-tank utility make it an exceptional choice as a main tank.


Paladin: The Holy Shield

Paladins have evolved and offer a mix of strong mitigation, passive defenses, and healing abilities.

Paladin The Holy Shield Screenshot

  • Holy Sheltron: This unique ability grants 15% mitigation for 8 seconds, with an additional 15% for the first 4 seconds. It also provides a regen effect with 250 potency per tick for 12 seconds.
  • Intervention: Similar to Holy Sheltron, this ability offers 10% mitigation for 8 seconds (15% with certain conditions) and the regen effect. Using it with certain cooldowns enhances its effectiveness.
  • Bulwark and Sheltron (Shield): Paladins wield shields, which provide around 30% block rate and 20% damage mitigation. Bulwark boosts block rate to 100% for 10 seconds on a 90-second cooldown.
  • Confiteor Combo: During Reqiuiescat, Paladins can use the Confiteor combo, healing for a total of 1600 potency. Divine Veil also enhances group healing.
  • Divine Spirit: After Royal Authority, Paladins gain a free, instant-cast Holy Spirit with a 400 potency heal.


Paladins possess strong mitigation, exceptional passive defenses, and burst to heal, making them a top-tier main tank option.


Gunbreaker: The Versatile Guardian

Gunbreakers offer versatility and adaptability, excelling as both main and off tanks.

Gunbreaker The Versatile Guardian Screenshot

  • Heart of Stone: This ability grants 15% mitigation for 8 seconds, with an extra 15% for the first 4 seconds. It also triggers a 900 potency heal when a target drops below 50% HP.
  • Aurora: A simple yet effective regen ability with 200 potency per tick for 18 seconds, usable on self and others.
  • Camouflage: This ability provides a 50% parry rate and 10% mitigation for 20 seconds on a 90-second cooldown. It's beneficial against physical-heavy encounters.
  • Passive Mitigation: Gunbreakers have strong passive mitigation due to their armour.


Gunbreakers offer a balanced toolkit with decent self-sustain and mitigation, making them a reliable choice for main tanking.


Dark Knight: The Burst Mitigator

Dark Knights boast frequent burst mitigation but lack substantial self-sustain, making them better suited for off-tank roles.

Dark Knight The Burst Mitigator Screenshot

  • Dark Mind: Offering 20% magical damage mitigation for 10 seconds on a 60-second cooldown, this skill excels at mitigating magical damage.
  • The Blackest Night: This ability grants a barrier for 25% of a target's max HP for 7 seconds on a 15-second cooldown. Breaking the barrier returns MP, promoting proper usage.
  • Ablation: Providing 10% damage mitigation for 10 seconds on a 60-second cooldown, this skill is versatile and can be used on self or others.
  • Limited Self-Sustain: Dark Knights lack consistent self-sustain abilities compared to other tanks.


Dark Knights shine as off tanks, with their frequent burst mitigation offering valuable support to the main tank.



In summary, each tank job in FFXIV has its own strengths and weaknesses, making them suitable for specific tanking roles. Based on their abilities, utility, and self-sustain potential, the ranking for main tanking suitability is as follows:


  • Warrior: Offers a robust toolkit, self-sustain, and off-tank utility.
  • Paladin: Provides powerful mitigation, passive defenses, and burst healing.
  • Gunbreaker: Balances versatility, mitigation, and moderate self-sustain.
  • Dark Knight: Excels as an off-tank due to frequent burst mitigation but limited self-sustain.


Remember, these rankings are based on the context of high-end content. Consider your playstyle, the encounters you'll face, and your team composition when choosing the best main tank job for your needs.

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