FFXIV Jobs Ranked From Worst to Best by Difficulty

Which Jobs are the easiest in FFXIV, and which are the hardest? We've ranked them here.

Miqo'te with a lab coat and goggles
Screenshot by GameSkinny
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When Dawntrail releases in summer 2024, we’ll get Pictomancer and Viper as new Jobs. And there’s Beastmaster coming as a limited Job, following the same restrictions as Blue Mage. But in the meantime, I thought it would be fun to rank all the current FFXIV Jobs from worst to best by difficulty.

What are the Best and Worst Jobs in FFXIV?

The Job system in FFXIV allows you to train every Job on the same character, meaning you don’t need to create a bunch of alts to try everything. However, some are undeniably better than others, especially regarding the knowledge and prowess needed to use them. Use the links below to jump to a specific Job.

Tank Jobs Ranked Hardest to Easiest

Dark Knight

Healers have a hard time with Dark Knight. There’s more to track when playing DRK than other tank Jobs. And while Tanks have to manage cooldowns on your mitigations, Dark Knight is demanding and requires you to manage your mana, as well.

It has a rough opener, too, with a pattern that looks like Blood Weapon > The Blackest Night > Tincture of Strength > Hard Slash > Edge of Shadow > Delirium. It’s a lot to understand, so DRK isn’t as friendly to new tanks as Jobs like Warrior.

Gunbreaker

Miqo'te with a gunblade
Screenshot by GameSkinny

Gunbreaker isn’t the hardest FFXIV Tank Job, but it’s not as beginner-friendly as Paladin and Warrior. With quite a few damage-dealing abilities, managing burst windows and planning mitigations is key. Understanding how to use your cartridge charges is critical, too.

Overall, I love the feel of Gunbreaker, which isn’t surprising since I play a lot of DPS Jobs. GNB’s rotations and style are very similar, so if you’re in the same boat, give this FFXIV Job a try.

Paladin

Paladin is a very forgiving Tank Job with an extra mitigation spell, which is great if you’re learning and use one at the wrong time. This extra option gives you a safety net of sorts, and it won’t annoy healers who assume tanks will use mitigation properly. Paladin also gives you Clemency, which you can spam to heal yourself. As a result, there’s a nice blend of defensive abilities — and a bit of utility.

Warrior

Warrior is the go-to FFXIV Job for beginners. You have invulnerability with the lowest cooldown among tanks. There’s self-healing using Bloodwhetting. And there’s even a burst window.

Bloodwhetting returns health with each attack, reduces damage taken, and activates a damage-absorption barrier. If you want to get into the Tank role, definitely start with Warrior.

Healer Jobs Ranked Hardest to Easiest

Astrologian

Tarot cards make Astrologian the hardest FFXIV healer Job. Each card pull is random, so you must quickly decide to use it or reroll for another. Then, you need to decide who to use the card on.

In the meantime, you’ll juggle healing and dealing damage. You need to be quick with targeting and making decisions. With everything to keep track of, AST takes the top spot as the hardest healer Job. 

Scholar

Miqo'te with a book and a fairy
Screenshot by GameSkinny

Scholar has plenty of mitigation, can heal with your fairy, and can deal a fair amount of DPS as a healer. But then you have the Job’s downsides: sacrificing DPS when using Aetherflow to heal and being unable to use instant cast damage spells without losing overall DPS.

Additionally, the playstyle has an overall clunky feel to it. Despite that, I like that Scholar can be leveled alongside Summoner, so you get both a DPS and healer Job through leveling either one.

Sage

Sage focuses on preventing damage rather than healing. However, once you get the flow of this Job, it’s pretty straightforward. You have a lot of movement, high DPS potential, and plenty of heals off the global cooldown.

The hard part is that you’ll feel the limitations of a shield healer if you can’t keep up with damage mitigation. That means you can end up in situations where you don’t have any backup healing spells to save somebody.

White Mage

White Mage is the basic healer Job in Final Fantasy 14, and it’s the easiest and most forgiving option. The two biggest drawbacks to WHM are managing mana and the lack of a raid utility ability. WHM is the opposite of Sage: you have many tools to replenish health instead of preventing damage.

The playstyle is much slower than that of other healer Jobs, which helps make it the perfect option if you’re just starting out with healing. And you even get lilies to help you, too, which isn’t a bad deal!

FFXIV DPS Jobs Ranked Hardest to Easiest

Black Mage

Black Mage is about maintaining your rotation — even within encounter mechanics. That can be a lot to balance if you aren’t used to the Job. If done right, you can pump out the highest DPS of the group with BLM.

However, if you can’t keep up with your rotation, you’ll lose a lot of DPS. You also don’t have as much overall utility to help out in raids. The other casters at max level (Summoner and Red Mage) can both cast resurrections on party members, helping the healers out if something goes horribly wrong.

Monk

What makes Monk a tough FFXIV Job is its multiple rotations. They have a measure of flexibility to them, but choosing the optimal ones for each situation is a tough learning curve.

Overall, you have high DPS potential, high mobility, and utility to help the group. Once you get the hang of the rotations and choosing which one you need to use in any given situation, you’ll be a force of nature.

Ninja

Ninja is great for buffing the raid through Mug, but it has quite a few cons, too. Your rotation revolves around Trick Attack, meaning you have a busy burst phase every time it’s up. You’ll need to balance building up Ninki before using as many abilities as possible during Trick Attack.

However, you don’t have a lot to work with while you wait for Trick Attack to come off cooldown again, and you need to rely on your group making use of Mug if you want to deal decent damage.

Bard

Miqo'te with a bow
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The hard part of playing Bard in FFXIV is balancing its song rotations and keeping your damage over time abilities applied to bosses. The group also needs to use your buff cycles to their fullest. With all your skills not on the global cooldown, Bard has a lot to keep track of.

Consequently, you must use your abilities constantly while still keeping up with the mechanics of the fight you’re in. As a result, Bard is tough to play to its highest potential.

Samurai

Samurai is a FFXIV Job that’s easy to play, but hard to play well. You don’t have any utility, but buffs from other classes can help you out a lot. However, your rotation requires some set-up before your burst window, and if that preparation is interrupted by something like a death, you’ll have a tough time recovering.

I think Samurai is a good choice if you want to play a melee DPS that offers more of a challenge but isn’t so difficult that it’s inaccessible for beginners.

Dragoon

The nice thing about Dragoon is that the rotation is the same. You can follow the same pattern without stumbling, which is great for learners. Your burst phase can feel a bit busy, but there’s a break to reorient yourself if needed. As such, this is one of the best Jobs to pick if you’re new to melee DPS. Just be careful that you don’t flip yourself off any boss arenas.

Machinist

Machinist is busy, but not overwhelming. It uses abilities constantly, but it’s friendlier for physical ranged DPS than Bard. While it lacks the mobility of Bard and Dancer, you have some good utility with Tactician. And you can summon a turret!

You can also choose when you enter your burst phase, giving you time to fully prepare. Among physical DPS Jobs, the Machinist can pump out the most damage. Plus, it’s one of the easier Jobs to play, making it both fun and friendly to newer players.

Red Mage

Like the Machinist, the Red Mage also has a flexible burst phase, prepping your burst phase to deal as much damage as possible. The rotation is fairly simple, too, making it easy to pick up and learn.

Another thing that helps the RDM is its utility. You can heal yourself if needed, and you can help out healers by using your resurrection if too many people get hit by a mechanic and die. However, to reach max potential, you’ll rely on your group, and there’s a risk of timing your burst phase incorrectly during a boss’ mechanics, reducing damage output.

Reaper

Miqo'te with a Scythe
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I’ve played a lot of Reaper, and it’s the easiest melee DPS Job for me to get into. The core part of your rotation is straightforward and simple. Plus, adjusting between multiple-target attacks and single-target attacks is simple. Mobility is at a surplus here, letting you get into and out of fights quickly. Additionally, you can use utility to heal yourself and mitigate damage.

However, it’s almost impossible to have a perfect rotation because of timing and managing debuffs to receive bonuses. Further, it’s critical to build an extra resource to hit your burst phase. Overall, it’s a smooth experience that’s forgiving if you don’t play it perfectly.

Dancer

Dancer’s strength is its ability to buff other players with Technical Step. Another upside is it’s a Job with a lot of mobility. The straight damage from a DNC isn’t great, but the Job’s support and utility compensate.

The downside is that Espirit attacks require a Dance Partner to build resources through their attacks. What I love about Dancer, however, is I can bolster a teammate’s damage and help healers at the same time. This might be the Job that I play — and enjoy — the most.

Summoner

Summoner used to be a difficult Job, but it was reworked near Endwalker‘s release, making it an incredibly simple Job — and one that’s perfect for any FFXIV player.

Strong burst windows and high utility symbolize this Job. But the rotation itself is rather boring, going through each gauge color and using the associated abilities. Then, you get to your Primal or Demi-Primal pets, depending on which one you’re at in your rotation. While easy, Summoner isn’t as fun to play as it used to be. If you’re just learning the game, however, it’s a good option.

And that covers my ranking of all the jobs in FFXIV from worst to best based on difficulty. I’m sure that personal preference and playstyle will affect which Jobs you find easy, but I tried to look at rotations and what each one brings to the table. From here, check out our FFXIV guides hub for topics like the best way to get Earthbreak Aethersand or Blue Landtrap Leaf.

About the author

Melissa Sarnowski

Melissa Sarnowski turned her hobbies of gaming and writing into a job through freelancing with the help of an English degree. If she isn't playing games and writing guides for them, she's spending time with her family or her dog.