I’ve recently started playing Shadowbringers in FFXIV. The first time through Holminster Switch, the first dungeon, I used a matched party of real people and played as a Red Mage. I’m playing Gunbreaker as my primary job, with White Mage and Red Mage as secondary roles.
Typically I don’t play Tank on high level dungeons, but choose DPS roles since they draw less comment if I mess up. However, I have found that Tank Roles are more survivable and more fun in the Solo Instances. For example, in The Oracle of Light solo duty, the tank is a lot of fun to play, and the earlier, tougher A Requiem for Heroes was reasonable as a Gunbreaker.
I need to level my Gunbreaker. I’ve decided to push it ahead to 80 or almost 80 before continuing with Shadowbringers.
When FFXIV announced Trusts for Shadowbringers, I was skeptical. I had played Mercenaries way back in 2011 with Guild Wars. But there are no complicated mechanics or skill combos in Guild Wars. The skills are separate and each have their old cool-down / resource issue. Also, the mobs [no dungeons so no bosses] don’t have complicated mechanics. They just do their skills at you and you do skills back. GW Mercenaries work pretty well. FFXIV skills and mob / boss mechanics are a lot more complicated.
Leveling to 80
I have used Palace of the Dead [PoD] and Heaven on High [HoH] random dungeons to level my jobs from level start to 61 and then to 70+, but at level 73 I found that my primary [highest level job] Gunbreaker was only getting 10% of a level from a HoH run of floors 21-30. That’s way way too many runs. A little research indicates that Trusts are the way to level in Shadowbringers once you’ve done at least one dungeon and have them available. So I tried it.
OMG, it works!
I didn’t assume it would be broken, but the NPCs are reasonably smart. I went in as a tank – Gunbreaker. I’ve done a lot of levels in PoD and HoH to get to 73, so I had the skill bars lined up and knew my rotations. So I picked a few NPCs from the dialog and then just ignored them and played on. I think during the whole dungeon, there was one time that Alphinaud died and was immediately rezzed by Alisaie – since Red Mages have rez too.
I just did my tank thing and kept the mobs / bosses on me and used my rotations and cool downs and kept up with the mechanics. I didn’t worry about them, and I didn’t need to.
The run took about 35 minutes and I got 31% of a level at level 73. That’s not a quick run. And it was a lot of work. But it was much quicker than three runs in HoH.
Here’s the math showing 31%. 5.4M out of 17.5M of the total level XP.
I guess I’ll be leveling up using Trusts. Of course they could be more powerful. But I won’t feel bad not being an expert tank or healer in these dungeons. Maybe I’ll take my White Mage through and try to heal for them.