CAUTION!
This article is only a guide. Information expressed in a guide is usually more opinion than fact and should be taken as such. Guides are written by players, based upon their experiences, successes and mistakes, and are meant to aid other players. However, there may be differing opinions than those expressed in a guide.
Strategies and information in guides may not work for everyone.

Introduction

  • This is meant to be a discussion and set of suggestions rather than a set-in-stone command of what is best. There are, as always, strengths and weaknesses of any subjob choice.
  • The following are analyses of the most popular and obviously useful subjob choices, as a start to discussion.

Reasoning

  • Having such high combat skills, along with strong support abilities, a Corsair can choose to build themselves either to fill a hybrid Damage/Support role or a full Support function.
  • Having a B skill in Marksmanship, B+ in Dagger, and B- in Sword, a Corsair can indeed gear to do moderate damage in an exp party. Due to their business with Phantom Roll, they often (read usually) will not be able to take part in the main skillchain - due to less time spent TP'ing than pure DDs - however they can contribute signifigant damage.
  • On the other hand, being of slightly lesser damage output and having access to so many buffs, a Corsair can legitimately gear for a pure support role, without their lesser damage "gimping" them to the party. The damage loss is less severe than to a full DD; and the Corsair may well fill a spot usually reserved for a mage-type job. Thus, backup healing and support might be more needed.

Support Job Options

Warrior

  • Warrior provides a stable subjob for any damage dealing job. Its Provoke, Warcry, and Berserk abilities enable the sub a large degree of melee support and an increase in damage output. It should be noted, however, that because a Corsair rarely melees in an exp party until later levels, the Double Attack trait will not be nearly as big a boon as for other DD jobs until then.

Traits

Job Abilities:

Strengths

  • Increased damage per shot, from Attack Bonus and Berserk
  • Double Attack can add TP gain, for those who melee for TP
  • Provoke adds a small degree of party support
  • Warcry can be mildly effective before a party's skillchains


Weaknesses

  • Double Attack will have much less effect than on fulltime melee jobs, damage-wise
  • A War sub, while amazing for melee output, adds little to Ranged Accuracy. Thus, damage will increase at the expense of accuracy
  • No added support capability, for a job that's highly support capable
  • Lack of cures, as sometimes expected by a support job

Ranger

  • Ranger adds a variety of DD capabilities, including better overall accuracy, and Barrage for faster TP gain and damage. As a majority of Corsair damage is ranged, a Ranger sub provides one of the consistently highest damage output builds.

Traits

Job Abilities:

Strengths

  • Sharpshot and Accuracy Bonus greatly increase accuracy and ensure that Slug Shot will hit
  • Barrage allows for burst damage, and is easily worked into Phantom Roll timers and combined with Sharpshot
  • Gun Belt can be equipped for additional Marksmanship skill. Beater's Earring can be equipped for additional ranged accuracy.
  • Able to act in an emergency by using Wild Card with Barrage and Sharpshot being restored.

Weaknesses

  • Lack of shadows/protection for pulling hate after obtaining Slug Shot, Barrage, and Sharpshot, which are best used stacked near each other
  • Lack of cures, as sometimes expected by a support job

Ninja

  • Ninja, the most common subjob choice for Rangers, seems an obvious choice for Corsairs as well. However, through dealing less damage and not pulling, Corsairs will get less benefit from Utsusemi protection. In addition, though a /ninja can use a second Archer's Knife for added accuracy, a true Ranger has an innate Accuracy Bonus, which stacks with the added knife. The trait, however, is actually more potent than an additional knife. A ninja sub, in general, adds more accuracy than a warrior sub, but less than a ranger sub. It gains Utsusemi and Tonko in return.

Traits

Job Abilities:

  • None

Spells:

Strengths

  • Dual Wield allows the use of a second Archer's Knife (or at higher levels, Trailer's Kukri) for extra ranged accuracy
  • Utsusemi offers protection against accidentally pulled hate and allows for safer pulling


Weaknesses

  • Offers less accuracy than /RNG, and less damage than /WAR
  • Fairly autonomous role in party, with no "desperation" action to be taken in emergency
  • Lack of cures, as sometimes expected by a support job

Thief

  • The Thief subjob does not provide all of the ranged accuracy of a Ranger, and doesn't gives shadows like a Ninja, but COR/THF is a far less expensive and comparably capable DD choice. The COR/THF can use TP built from ranged attacks to unleash respectable melee weapon skills using Sneak Attack/Trick Attack. The recast timers of these two abilities is 60 seconds, which aligns nicely with Phantom Roll, so the roll rotation is not affected. Also, the melee Weapon Skill delivered using SATA is a guaranteed hit, which helps for players frustrated by inherently low ranged accuracy leading to botched Marksmanship skills. The Evasion Bonus traits and (to a lesser extent) Flee, when paired with the luxurious attack range granted by firearms, allow the COR/THF to fulfill the pulling role just as effectively as a COR/NIN. This job combination takes a little more care and practice than other DD-focused setups, but has the potential to be just as effective, for a tiny fraction of the cost.

Traits

Job Abilities:

Strengths

Weaknesses

  • Lacks the Ranger's ranged accuracy bonus traits
  • Relatively little support/healing capabilities when compared to White Mage
  • Relatively little enfeebling capabilities when compared to Ninja

White Mage

  • White Mage, arguably the most common choice of sub for support jobs, is another obvious choice for Corsairs. The White Mage sub, for a Corsair that wants to focus less on damage, and more on support, offers Cures and -Na spells. Though not always appropriate given party set-up, the /WHM sub can be useful in many situations and camps. Because the COR is not as heavy a damage as true DD jobs, the damage lost is not as vital as with, say, a MNK.

Traits

Job Abilities:

Spells:

Strengths

  • Backup curing capability, supported by the COR's own Evoker's Roll
  • Status removal power, to aid a busy main healer
  • Increases the total MP and MP-regeneration speed of the party
  • Damage loss less noticeable than for a heavier damage dealer
  • Able to act in an emergency by using Wild Card with Divine Seal being restored.

Weaknesses

  • Offers less accuracy than /RNG, and less damage than /WAR
  • Offers nothing new in the way of offense

Bard

  • Since a recent patch on the job, a main Corsair can now hold two full powered Phantom Rolls and one full powered Song from a Bard sub. This is the truest version of a fully support Corsair. The Corsair loses significant damage output, compared to Warrior, Ninja, or Ranger subjobs; and the job cannot throw a direct Cure at all. However, this job combination is capable of some of the highest MP regeneration per tick of any job in the game, and an additional reliable Sleep and Dispel are gained.

Traits

Spells:


Strengths

  • Increased MP regeneration per tick, through Ballad I
  • More reliable/stable MP regeneration per tick
  • Sleep - Lullaby sticks surprisingly well, despite the lack of magic skill or instruments
  • Dispel - Magic Finale sticks surprisingly well, despite the lack of magic skill or instruments


Weaknesses

  • Less damage than Warrior sub; less accuracy than Ninja or Ranger subs
  • Offensive Bard debuffs will rarely to never stick
  • Melee-boosting Bard songs will often be considered outdated or minor, due to the subjob's level
  • Lack of cures, as sometimes expected by a support job

Red Mage

  • Uncommon, however it can be used as a useful support job, as a Corsair gains the ability to heal and dispel. This is a compromise between a /BRD and /WHM build, in which the ability to heal replaces the ability to sing Ballad, with the ability for an added dispel maintained. Additionally, the Corsair's Quick Draw gains a damage bonus from /RDM's Magic Attack Bonus job trait.

Traits

Spells:

Strengths

  • Backup curing capability, supported by the COR's own Evoker's Roll
  • Increases the total MP and MP-regeneration speed of the party
  • Damage loss less noticeable than for a heavier damage dealer
  • Dispel can be a substitute to spare Dark Shot's timer
  • Sleep can be a substitute if Light shot gets resisted and you have a link. This, however, will rarely stick
  • Magic Attack Bonus adds a noticeable amount of damage to Quick Draw

Weaknesses

  • Offers less accuracy than /RNG, and less damage than /WAR
  • Apart from Magic Attack Bonus, offers nothing new in the way of offense
  • Offensive magic will generally not stick, because of skill level
  • No area effect cures, or status removal spells

Dancer

  • Dancer is something like a combination of /WHM, /RNG, and /NIN, or support, offense, and defense. It grants access to cures, Erase, Curaga, a pseudo-Regenga and -Refreshga, self-target Sneak and Invisible, and slight increases to Accuracy, Evasion, and even Attack in a way. Dancer is a very good party support job, since the Corsair can switch between damage-dealer and backup healer without needing to change subjobs, and its survivability definitely makes it one of the best subs for a soloing Corsair.

Traits

Job Abilities:

Strengths

  • Increased accuracy for yourself from Accuracy Bonus, and for the entire party from Quickstep and Desperate Flourish
  • Increased melee and ranged damage and accuracy from Dual Wield when using certain daggers.
  • Increased attack for the entire party from Box Step
  • Increased Evasion for greater survivability
  • Aspir Samba can be used in place of Evoker's Roll for magic-using melees (such as BLU, PLD, or DRK) who don't want to give up their melee buffs. Be aware that it only works on mobs that have MP
  • Drain Samba can be used to help out if mages are spending too much MP on cures
  • Several cures, including a Cure II and Cure III equivalent from Curing Waltz and Curing Waltz II, as well as a small Curaga from Divine Waltz
  • Single-target Erase from Healing Waltz
  • Self-target instant Sneak and Invisible from Spectral Jig


Weaknesses

  • Offers somewhat less accuracy than /RNG, and less damage than /WAR
  • Offers nothing new in the way of offense
  • No way to mitigate damage, but Evasion Bonus and the ability to cure yourself makes up for this in most cases
  • No Raise or Reraise equivalent
  • If you're spending TP on dances, you'll have less to use for Slug Shot, which is the main source of a Corsair's damage


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