(Fair warning, this is Looong >.> If you desire to skip past the context, jump to The Impressions at the bottom where I talk about how I feel early ACN works. )
Firstly, I would offer that caveat that this is not meant to be a guide as such on how to be an Arcanist. This is merely my interpretations of my experiences with the class and some of the conclusions I’ve made up to this point (which can and probably will be subject to change). So if you feel the unwavering rage to reply to my post with your nubby rage digits, please remember and consult this paragraph first.
Anyroad, so I came to the Arcanist class with the desire to be a Scholar. I think it’s a lingering desire to achieve the Scholar class from FFxi, which I never managed to pull off, and well, opportunities and second chances and such. I started out as a Conjurer, because I really didn’t want to have the hassle of starting Arcanist and then having to stop to relevel a secondary job. Conjurer >> Arcanist >> Scholar looked to be the most direct. And I like direct.
I think we all know how to get to 15 on our first job at this point, and I won’t bore you with details. Needless to say, Gridania was served well by me, and much healing and stoning was done.
OFF TO LIMSA LOMINSA!~
(Side note: I really do love it there.)
Leveling the second (or any subsequent job) is always more of a pain. The early game is streamlined to get you started, but the next time around, you have to have more initiative. Myself, I don’t mind the grind so much, and levels 1 -8 are pretty easy to get on any combat class. Blessed be the Hunting Logs. And Fates. Some folks don’t like ‘em so much, but I would run towards one whenever I saw it on the map. I find they add a sense of immediacy to the moment that killing 101 mandragoras just lacks.
And then I’m 15 again. Also, I am in love with K’lyhia. And she loves me too! She just doesn’t know it yet… *sigh*
And now its Miqo’te’s first instance (as an Arcanist). I healed once as a Conjurer, just to get a feel for the party system and to hopefully not nubsauce all over someone else’s serious Dungeoning. Here’s where the insights about the class come in, though I will be the first to say, this may only apply pre-20. I hear that instances scale up in complexity and it is not my place to speculate about that which I have not done.
And then I was at Sastasha. I struggled… oh it was embarrassing. I started out with TopCarbs, and I had been brought in as Healer, which was kind of nifty for me, because that’s kind of where I was aiming to get to with Scholar. I was like /score!
I will admit, I went in mostly blind. Arcanist is not Conjurer with a sparkle squirrel. I struggled with party targeting (I play on PS3) and keeping TopCarbs manageable. My first hint that half of Arcanist is pet management. I switched out to EmCarbs just so I wouldn’t have to worry about him, I had a hard enough time targeting the Tank for heals.
(Sidenote: if anyone has a macro that target’s the tanks or p1’s mobs, I would love to have it :D)
Survival occurred and one might even generously call it a success of sorts. I slinked away, hoping only to be forgotten of my less-than-stellar performance
Tam Tara. It was an… education in what an Arcanist can get away with. The second group was a MAR, LNC, me(!) and another ACN. So I had a safety net of sorts in that there was a second Physick to cover for me. I felt bad for the MAR, he was three levels under everyone (and I was synced to the instance at that). At first, knowing that TopCarbs is the glowing tank, I started out with EmCarbs. But our Tank just couldn’t hold hate from the two main DPS, who had clearly been running instances before and were geared to show it.
I pulled out TopCarbs to lend him a hand and inadvertently ended up tanking the instance. I would let the Tank charge off into the fight (because I am still new to the instances and have no clue where I’m going >.>; ). I set my Glowing Tank Machine to Guard and would then follow the Tank into the fight. After he would drop to about half health, I would Physick him back to full and let my pet run in front of me and just go at it. He’d take hate in good order, usually only in about 5 – 7 seconds. And from there, I would just heal my pet, occasionally keeping everyone else topped off. Just like that all the way through the Boss fight. And done.
Then the Copper Bell rang. I was 19 by this time (I was also secretly trying to retain a Retainer, so I could start crafting and making myself HQ gears >.>, so kind of ran around leveling, trying to find a quest to get my Retainer… just needed to follow the story quest. /facepalm)
And they want me to DPS~ I will be honest, healing as an Arcanist is way harder than Conjurer. So I was happy to maybe just back-up heal and focus on teaching the foul minions of Copper Bells Mines to fear my glowing squirrel. The Tank was better than the last two, but still under my level, and I actually pulled hate once just dropping DoTs and Ruin. But it only happened the once, and I think I targeted the wrong mob on that one, so there’s that. As a back up healer, it was easier to just jump in when things got a little dicey, because I knew EmCarbs would keep firing away, like the brilliant sentient DoT that he is. /hugs EmCarbs.
So that was a smooth run and all was well and good. Even got a stylish jacket out of the deal.
So, I have this idea that a party of just Arcanists would probably blow through an instance, though I feel once that starts happening, the class is on the sparkling steps to a nerf.
That aside, Arcanists are clearly the all-in-one class. Carbs can tank/DPS, while the caster drops DoTs and either adds to the pain or just straight up heals their glowing meat shield. TopCarbs can clearly tank instances, IMO. He has just under twice as much HP as any of the (admittedly few) Tanks that I worked with. He’s just got an easier HP pool to keep afloat compared to a player. And for a class that really has to steal most of its skills from the actual Healer class, that’s probably the saving grace.
Can an Arcanist replace a Conjurer? That’s more situational. Depends on how much you like scrolling through party targets, constantly spot healing. Its also much more dependent on group dynamics. If the other DPS just tear hate off mobs, well, you’ll be doing a lot more varied healing than just the Tank.
We don’t get the group heal and we don’t get the dedicated MND stat to go with it. As Healers we can do just fine, but there is definitely more hands work to be done in a Healer’s role.
Of course, that’s just three instances before twenty, so I know there are others out there far more knowledgeable than I, but for those coming up the ranks of our Incalculable Class of Arcanists, this will hopefully provide plentiful ideas to ponder as it pertains to parties.
/flail waves and a kiss for K’lyhia (she ignores me so cruelly ;_; )
Edited, for clarity Sep 2nd 2013 7:52am by Jjnnyrr
Edited, Sep 2nd 2013 10:24pm by Jjnnyrr