Consolidating the Ranged DPS role based skills made a lot of sense. Both of them have to bring the same invaluable utility, but they were doing it in different ways. So, something had to be done, but what? First off ranged DPS gain Second Wind at level 8. which is basically unaltered from the current version other than a small potency buff to 500. All of the Graze abilities from Machinist have been shared with Bard here: Head Graze your silence, Arm Graze a stun, Leg Graze which inflicts a 40% heavy, and Foot Graze a bind, are all available. None of these abilities deal any damage, which to me, shows a move away from using these abilities as rotation filler and may show an emphasis on using CC abilities in a more targeted manner.
Peloton is the genericized version of Swfitsong, now available to Machinist, gained at level 20. This is pretty great, but I do lament the loss of Job specific flavor here, but that’s a small complaint. Thankfully Invigorate has been added to the shared abilities for the ranged jobs at level 24, restoring 400 TP every two-minutes.
The first of the really interesting shared abilities is Tactician at level 32. This ability is the replacement for both the Rook Turret’s Promotion effect and Bard’s Army’s Paeon, and gives every nearby party member a 30 second TP restoration effect. One interesting side effect of this new ability is that once the effect is applied, the party can wander away from each other and not lose it. This is a sneaky buff to the use of both Tactician and Refresh when having to deal with heavy movement/teleportation during fights, and for dungeon content. The Aforementioned Refresh is your MP restoring effect with the same duration gained at level 36. Both skills have a cooldown of 180 seconds, but they do not share this cooldown, which is another great change. Now you can restore both TP and MP at any time with the press of a button! The last shared ability Palisade is a new type of utility. This reduces a party member’s incoming physical damage by 20% for 10 seconds on a 150-second cooldown. With all of the other cooldowns and damage reduction that other Jobs are getting in Stormblood it seems like there will be more of a focus on sharing the responsibility of covering party members with mitigation in order to survive. It makes sense then, that Ranged DPS get this, a physical version of the Caster DPS ability Apocatastasis.
Both of our Ranged DPS jobs have been reworked in huge ways, all of which would have been practically impossible without adding these shared abilities. The important TP/MP restoration abilities had to stay, but having two separate paths to the same buff wasn’t ideal, so shifting them into these consolidated effects relieved some of the balance issues. It would seem like homogenizing the support options would remove quite a bit of the flavor of these Jobs. Though, as we have seen, this just let the designers bring more fun and interesting abilities to both jobs.
Go Next to see Bard in action
- Caster DPS Role Actions : Red Mage, Black Mage, Summoner
- Range DPS Role Actions: Bard, Machinist
- Melee DPS Role Actions: Samurai, Monk, Dragoon, Ninja
- Tanks Role Actions: Paladin, Dark Night, Warrior
- Healers Role Actions: White Mage, Scholar, Astrologist