FFXI: The Best Subjobs For Samurai

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These far-eastern warriors are masters of skillchains and weapon skills alike.

Currently, samurai are considered one of the strongest jobs in the game. So they’re quite popular among players.

Anyone with a samurai build is often looking for ways to bolster their capabilities as damage dealers as much as possible. So what kind of support job fits best?

Here’s my picks for the best subjobs that give a samurai the most bang for their buck.

 

5. Dancer

Dancer is often used in low-man scenarios or solo content where party setups are a little more lenient. But it can work great as a subjob here, too.

Dancer doesn’t provide any damage increasing potential to a samurai. And the only extra damage it can offer is available to any samurai natively: Skillchain Bonus.

Fortunately, they aren’t particularly reliant on damage coming from subjobs, so the sacrifice isn’t as large as it would seem.

In exchange, picking a Dancer subjob can offer fantastic utility for yourself and party members, specifically in the form of Waltzes for healing, Steps for various debuffs, and Sambas for a party-wide buff.

In that last case, that would most commonly be the Haste Samba for a wonderful 5% job ability Haste.

Finally, Spectral Jig is an incredibly useful ability that grants the user Sneak and Invisible. Naturally, this would be super useful to avoid unwanted attention from enemies.

 

4. Ninja

This would be the perfect subjob for fights where physical damage is a concern.

Utsusemi shadows allows you to reliably block physical AoE damage, which would otherwise wipe you out, because Samurai don’t have much in the ways of natural defense without relying on Third Eye.

Utsusemi shadows can clash with a samurai’s Third Eye and Seigan abilities, so it’s often better to use shadows for their ability to also absorb magical damage so long as it’s a single target attack—something that Third Eye lacks.

While Utsusemi and Third Eye can effectively be switched back & forth in different battles, focusing on Utsusemi also allows you to keep using Hasso to increase your damage, since Hasso and Seigan replace eachother.

And since samurai have no other way of applying this for themselves, Monomi and Tonko also offer Sneak and Invisible respectively – both extremely useful for travel.

 

3. Rune Fencer

Here’s the best defensive support job available to a samurai, hands down.

While the rune fencer is a little more involved than a ninja, its value can’t be stressed enough!

This subjob can often prevent magic damage from knocking players out instantly, so it’s very handy to have on board when magic damage is going to be a considerable worry in a fight.

And with the efficient use of Wards and Runes, your character should have no issues shrugging off incoming magic damage. To this effect, a rune fencer’s Magic Defense Bonus and Tenacity traits help to minimize even more of the damage you’ll take.

In addition to all of this, you’ll gain the ability to use a few supportive spells – which also allow you to tank if the situation calls for it. Flash allows you to gain large amounts of enmity, which can then be combined with Seigan and Third Eye to negate some nasty physical attacks.

But rune fencers also grant access to Blink, which is a more-than-capable backup tool should find Third Eye ever be on cooldown.

Efficient usage of both can even result in the complete negation of physical attacks. Seriously!

And this samurai + rune fencer combo also gets access to various bar-spells, with the exception of bar-amnesia.

 

2. Warrior

Now this job is built for damage. And as such, will be used in situations where samurais need to go all out.

With the addition of Double Attack, Attack Bonus, Smite, Warcry, and Berserk, samurais can push their damage to obscene levels. And this isn’t really possible with many other subjobs.

If capping attack is a priority, then this would be the job to do it on. Warcry is an AoE buff, so if anyone else in a party is either a warrior or using warrior as a subjob, it’s best to use this in an agreed order – just to maximize the time you’ll have it up on the party.

But Berserk can be a risky move if you’re unprepared, especially if you unintentionally gain the attention of an enemy.

Third Eye may have to be quickly deployed here to control the surge in enmity. But if caught at a bad time, the high defense loss from Berserk can get some players in trouble.

If a samurai ever needs to tank, then a warrior subjob offers plenty of tools for them to do it safely – in addition to their own base skillset.

Provoke is the easiest way for them to gain high amounts of enmity fast, which can be strategically used to absorb auto attack rounds, or physical TP moves by quickly shifting enmity and using Seigan and/or Third Eye.

Defender is also a great way to increase defense temporarily, should a samurai need to increase their defense in exchange for attack.

 

1. Dragoon

This subjob used to be a very niche option for a samurai.

But the recent addition of the immensely powerful Weapon Skill Damage trait is only available to dragoons – and naturally, that job has seen a rise in popularity.

And this is especially beneficial for a samurai that capitalizes on the frequent and efficient use of weapon skills.

High Jump is the perfect tool for safely shedding enmity by offering a 30% reduction in current total enmity.

Combining that with Third Eye can give players a way to negate damage while getting rid of their current enmity (and very efficiently, too).

Like a warrior, the dragoon job offers the valuable Smite ability in addition to the Attack Bonus trait, increasing your attack handsomely.

But the dragoon also offers the Conserve TP trait, which blends perfectly with a samurai’s often-efficient TP expenditure. So this really could be argued as the best subjob for anyone playing a Samurai in modern FFXI.

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