Adding Depth to FFXIV’s Class System
I’m level 50 in Final Fantasy XIV. I’ve started the gearing up process, begun leveling other classes, and started to figure out how I am going to make money to survive. I’m also starting to think of ways I would begin to improve FFXIV if I was in charge of developing the game further.
One of the big changes I would make is to the class system. I really like how one character can be all of the classes yet feel like I’m on a different character who kept all of the core progress. I would have made fewer classes and more jobs though. I think there should have been a lot more branching off early on leading into a lot more customization. For example, all Marauders becoming Warriors is a missed opportunity. Why can’t Marauders branch off into Beast Master, Samurai, Warrior, etc.? They could specialize early on and have those choices determine the availability of jobs.
The level of customization within each job could be taken further. Instead of every Summoner receiving identical spells at predetermined levels, what if they could specialize into a particular form of summon. Another example is the Dragoon which received none of the unique frills they had in XI – no wyvern pet, no breath attacks, nothing special about their lance. The Dragoon is just a melee dps. I would give every class more flavor. Again, Dragoons could specialize into breath attacks, polearms, or their wyvern pet, each providing something beneficial and unique to the game.
I really like the idea of supporting classes. Take the Samurai job for example. What if you could be any number of base classes then become a Samurai. Being a Warrior would give your Samurai more of a physical attack approach, a Thief could offer sneak attacks, Ninja would mean you could evade more, etc.
Even without a deeper level of customization, simply adding more ways to splinter off than just a straight Marauder to Warrior — even keeping the abilities granted on level — would make for a more ‘diverse’ playing field.
A lot of this can come down the road in expansions. Like I’ve said before, nothing about the system now is ‘bad’ but it lacks creativity. The current class system works for a themepark gear treadmill where melee dps, ranged dps, heals, and tanks are needed to get a job done. I would like it to be more.