|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.
Heavenly Knight: Paladin
Paladin, the epitome of the holy, chivalrous, role-playing game knight. The job with the overall best tanking specs in the whole game. It can keep hate better than any job in the game, and takes little damage per hit. Now, a lot of guides have been written for this job already, and they are really good. Why write a new one? Well, these How-To guides were meant for quick, easy-to-access information as opposed to reading the enormous guides written elsewhere. Paladin is also one of the best job classes in the game for showing the whole Skill > Equipment > Race factor. Since so many stats are useful, and every race plays the job extravagantly well, race has absolutely no meaning whatsoever. It merely means how the job’s played. Do you keep hate by healing yourself more, or dealing more damage? Do you prefer taking less damage per hit, or less damage as a result of evading and blocking? Equipment plays a larger role in this job, since the player will be taking damage for parties right from square one. Now skill. Skill is a huge part of this job. You have to know how to play the job, how to set a hate threshold, and how to control the entire party. If anything goes wrong, you have to be the one who dies. If you don’t like dying, this job is definitely not for you.
Please note: This is only a guide. Please add anything if it is needed, and take away anything that is either untrue or not needed.
Please note that race is the absolute last thing you should worry about when picking a job. Anything said here is seriously exaggerated. A single piece of gear can often make up for a race's negligible lack in a stat. Every race also gets Race Specific Equipment, or RSE, that will boost a race's stats to equal, or possibly even surpass other races.
- As a Hume Paladin, you can enjoy the very center of both spectra. You can both cure yourself and deal damage to keep hate since you have average MP, Dexterity, and Strength. You also take less damage both because of average Vitality, and average Agility (for evading, parrying, and blocking with a shield). HP isn’t left out either. With high Charisma, it’s more probable you can intimidate undead easier, and with moderate Mind, you take less magic damage too. You can buff-up any stat to mold your Paladin into whatever you need, or whatever you want. Many Paladins are Humes, and many Humes are Paladins.
- If you chose Elvaan as your starting race, you certainly can’t go wrong as Paladin. You find yourself on a much more melee and meat-shield end of the spectrum, since your Agility and MP are fewer than most. However, with the highest Strength in the game, that’s hardly a problem. You’ll also enjoy the highest Mind in the game to cap your Cures faster, and at Lv.35, Auto Refresh nullifies the low MP. Elvaan also have the second-highest of both Vitality and HP in the game, so taking damage isn’t difficult at all. But beware, because lower-end Intelligence means you are a little more vulnerable to black magic; however, you can very easily compensate for this with Shell spells and with a variety of high-level equipment. High Charisma means high intimidation rates on undead. On top of all that, there are few things as amazing looking as an Elvaan Paladin. May your armor shine!
- Don’t think just because Tarus are small they can’t be Paladins. This is far from the truth. As a Tarutaru Paladin, you enjoy the highest MP pool in the entire game. Like Elvaan and Hume, Tarutaru have huge Charisma for intimidating undead. If that’s not enough, you have the second-highest Agility in the game, so you avoid some attacks, block a ton, and can parry a few attacks now and then. Remember, Cures restore HP at about a 3.75x multiplier, so having a high MP pool eliminates the low HP pool. It also means you can keep hate very well. Just because you have low HP doesn’t mean you need a Cassie Earring. In fact, I’d suggest against it.
- No race touches a Mithra’s grace on the front lines. If you play this job-race combo, you’ll have the most fun with dodging, parrying, and blocking. Since Paladin’s biggest ‘thing’ is shields, you’ll be right at home. You can enjoy a nice MP pool, so you can keep hate and your healers less on the edge. You also have the highest dexterity in the game, meaning you can keep damage high, so long as you have a nice, high-damage sword. In a way of looking at things, Mithra is all-round like Hume, so you can adjust whatever you want for whatever situation. Your RSE hands and legs are amazing, giving you more MP, mind, and vitality- three great stats for Paladin. Of course The HP and MP bonus is very high.
- Truly defining the ’meat shield’ of Final Fantasy XI. Playing this race would mean you have a huge load of both HP and vitality at your disposal, plus a moderate amount of agility, strength, and dexterity. This meaning, of course, you have no worry about damage taken, nor damage dealt. One of the few downsides to this race is a smaller MP pool. However, with a smart use of MP and Auto-Refresh at Lv.35, that is hardly noticeable. Galka also have one of the lowest Intelligence stats of any race, lowering their defenses against offensive magic, but with spells and equipment (as well as their monstrous HP) this point is mostly moot. Since all of your other stats are so great, you are more open to MP buffing equipment without worrying about losing out on anything else. Just don’t go overboard.
- Paladin is strange in terms of weapon choice. For the most part, you’ll be using a single-handed sword, but later on, in certain scenarios, staves are an alternative. Allow me to talk about swords first, and I’ll move onto staves later. You’ll be using a sword from Lv.1 to Lv.75. I can guarantee that. Swords can give really nice status boosts. In fact, your artifact weapon is a sword. Since you don’t get high base damage, hitting the monster for any damage is better than hitting for zero. Similarly, if you are a Hume, Mithra, or Tarutaru, you’ll be using Cure spells frequently. And since that means you won’t get a lot of hits in, the harder the hits, the better. Many swords are pretty decent for early levels in the game. A Wax Sword +1 can last you from Lv.1 to Lv.11. After that, a Bee Spatha +1 can last you until 18. A Flame Sword at that level can last you until probably Lv.25 or so. The Centurion’s Sword and its higher quality versions are great for the thirties. Later in the game, a Gluttony Sword surpasses almost any other weapon. It’s a one-handed sword, but it’s got a huge damage and delay rating. It also gives +7 vitality. If you can wait a few levels the Durandal makes a good alternative to the gluttony sword with enmity +1 and also vitality +7
- Now, in terms of staves, you’ll only be using them from Lv.51 and higher. And in the odd cases you do use them, you’ll only be using three- the Earth Staff, Light Staff, and Dark Staff. The latter two being for power leveling (or other such purposes) only. The Earth (or Terra, its HQ cousin) Staff cuts down physical damage taken by 20%, and boosts vitality by 4 (5 with HQ). Now, although that’s great and all, keep in mind that with the use of staves, means the loss of damage, shields, and good weapon skills. However, with the weapon skill Spirit Taker, you can get MP back from dealing damage, and therefore can allow you to cure more and keep more hate. This weapon choice would probably be a lot more valid for Mithra and Tarutaru, who rely more on Cures to keep hate anyway. For the most part, unless you have Staff leveled from another job, it’s best just to keep with Swords.
- As you might expect, Paladin is also very handy with shields. There are four shield sizes: Buckler, Round, Kite, and Tower. Towards the Buckler end are lighter, smaller shields that block more frequently but for less damage resistance. Towards the Tower end are much larger, heavier shields that block less frequently, but when they do, they block a lot of damage. Bucklers are definitely the best way to skill-up, and typically have bonuses like Accuracy or Attack. Round shields offer a decent mix, and typically have some neat magical resistances or effects. Kite are a Paladin’s best choice because of the high balance of both frequency and amount that typically comes with Paladin-oriented status buffs. Towers are good for pure defense and often have neat effects for survivability.
- Paladin gets the heaviest armor in the game. Fitting, since the job is the game’s only ‘true’ tank. Armor choice is really flexible for Paladin. Defense is always nice to have, but if possible, vitality can be useful too. Since Paladin is overall bad at avoiding hits anyway, anything that reduces evasion to boost defense isn’t a bad thing. Coarse Leggings might be your best course of action until about Lv.15 unless you have Leaping or Bounding Boots. Until higher levels, though, there aren’t many boosts in equipment, so picking the highest defense ones can often be the best. At Lv.29, there is an armor set available for the only two meat shield tanks in the game: Warrior and Paladin. It is hands-down the best set of equipment in the game for low-level tanks. It’s known as the Eisenplatte (Kampfplatte, HQ) Armor Set. Really, though, if you’re going to get the set, make some cash and buy the HQ version. It’s not a huge difference better, but it’s really impressive. The HQ version has a whole five defense as well as three agility and vitality over the normal quality one. For the most part, you want to pick up vitality-boosting equipment. Later on in the game, defense becomes slightly more important, so you’ll want to balance the two. If you’re new, keep in mind that equipment isn’t everything, and having the best of the best of the best doesn’t make you the best. However, if you can, having decent gear will always help the person taking damage. Remember though, that Agility increases your chance to block with a shield and to parry attacks; of course you won't be Superman and never get hit, but added Agility helps a tremendous amount when capping your Shield skill.
Advanced Job Quest
- Once you hit Lv.30 as any job (though if you're going to Paladin, it'll probably be Warrior), you can begin your quest to become this heavenly defender. This is where I normally suggest to a player that he or she has White or Red Mage to Lv.34+ and Black Mage to Lv.17+, since it will save you a fair bit of money. This advanced job quest isn't difficult, it just requires you sneaking around high-level areas. If, however, you don't have these jobs leveled, buy a stack of both Prism Powders and Silent Oils, and purchase a Warp Cudgel (if 36+) or a Scroll of Instant Warp. Now onto the quest itself-- You have to have completed the quests A Squire's Test and A Squire's Test II before you can even accept this one. When you do, talk to Balasiel again, then go to the Victory Square. On the large walls, you have to talk to two NPC's, one is Baunise on the West wall, and the other is Cahaurme on the East wall. Each will provide you with respective key items. Your next step is to head on down to Davoi at E-10, where you have to click on a Disused Well. Davoi is a higher level area, so I suggest you have those items I mentioned at this point. Drop Invisible and click on the Well, and then head back to Balasiel once you have the key item. Congratulations! You can now become a Paladin! (And hey, a Kite Shield too!)
Soloing 1 to 10
- Personally, I found this to be one of the easiest things ever. Most jobs you take to Lv.10 are trivial, difficult, long, and just a plain pain in the rump. But seriously, in these levels, Paladin is just a Warrior with the ability to Cure itself without the use of a support job to do so. If you can, try buying a Wax Sword +1 and a Marine Shield. These two should last you until at least Lv.9. Getting to Lv.5 shouldn’t be a problem. Going outside and killing worms or the like until 3, and then anything decent challenge after that. Once you get Cure, it gets even easier. You might even want to go with something that boosts your MP, since even by that level, Cure will heal a 2-to1 ratio, give or take. At Lv.7 you get Banish. Unless you’re in a party that is using either Skillchain: Transfixion or Fusion and you want to magic burst it, I really don’t see a use. Though if you get into a fight with an undead, using it at the start will make your life easier. Don’t spam it, though. Also, remember to get Signet whenever you go outside!
- I wasn’t a huge fan of these levels myself. Parties are too uncontrolled, and hate isn’t really that easy to hold with only one cure spell and one job ability to do it with. Actually, when I was in the process of leveling Paladin after 10, it was during exam week, so I could only get on for 15 minutes or so at a time during breaks. Actually, I hung around in Konschtat killing worms. In about three hours’ worth of play time (and obviously using my Empress Band when available) I hit Lv.16 soloing the worms. Even ones that checked Tough were super easy. So, if for any reason you have a hard time finding a party, killing those can make your life better. Let’s move away from this, though. During your stay in Valkurm, you learn how to tank if you haven’t already. You’ll obviously be subbing Warrior through these levels too. Using the best defensive gear available really helps. Cure yourself whenever you can. It not only helps mages out, but gives you hate. Also remember to use Provoke every 30 seconds, even if you still have hate. Its enmity will stack. You may want to set your home point in Valkurm. Chances are high you’re going to fall at least once in these levels, and it can often be taxing trying to find a Raise. When you hit Lv.15, you get Shield Bash. It’s a very useful move that deals a miniscule amount of damage, may stun the target, and gets hate. Think of it as another Provoke if you lose hate to someone who really can’t take it. It’s best used to interrupt an enemy trying to use a special attack or cure itself. You also get Cure II by Lv.17. You’ll love this spell.
- These levels still try your patience with parties. Until about Lv.30, hate control is still a difficult task, but you’ll get over it. Lv.25 is when you learn a really neat job trait called Shield Mastery. It will give the user an interrupt-free cast if the shield is used when casting. On top of which, it gives you extra TP for blocking. It’s a cool bonus for one of your two A+ skills. At Lv.30, you get a new job ability called Sentinel. This is a really great job ability that can be used once every couple of fights and gives you a ton of hate, while simultaneously giving you a huge physical paling. Also at Lv.30, you get Cure III, which will seriously help your enmity control. With these two new abilities, you’ll be able to hold hate from almost anything if used properly. Five levels later, you get a very sought-after job trait called Auto-Refresh. What it does is gives you 1 MP every 3 seconds, alleviating a lot of need to time your MP use. When combined with the Parade Gorget and Refresh, you get 5 MP per tic, giving you a near infinite supply of MP, letting you keep hate amazingly well. Also at Lv.35 you get Cover. Not enough Paladins use this job ability as much as they should. It’s great for when someone steals far too much enmity to take back, and there’s no way to get it without using Invincible. It allows you to take damage for a party member as long as you’re between that person and the attacker. At Lv.37 is when you get one of two of your most useful non-Cure spells. Flash (the other being Raise at Lv.50). It’s basically like a second Provoke, and your key to almost never, ever losing hate. If you have a Thief using SATA on you, you can almost forget about losing hate unless you need to. In fact, Flash opens up new possibilities for support jobs too. In normal party scenarios, Dancer makes a viable support job, allowing you to use your TP for other things than saving up for Spirit’s Within or the like. Though rarely, if ever, used in real party scenarios, Monk can be a useful support job once Flash is acquired. Though I would avoid using it under situations where your party has a ton of damage-dealers, it can still work, especially with a Thief in the party.
Your AF Weapon
- It’s a great weapon, I’ll tell you that. It has a high damage over time and simultaneously grants a nice bonus to both vitality and mind. Still, the only weapon of the level range that rivals it is the Grudge Sword and its Enmity boost.
- Before you can start the quest, you have to have done the Father and Son one. After you do that, talk to Ailbeche again. Talk to Sobane in South San d’Oria twice. The first time you talk to her will be for a different quest, irrelevant to this one. Now, before you head down to Ordelle’s Caves, make sure you have some high level help. This NM is seriously overrated in difficulty. Most people say it’s impossible to kill unless you have 6-18 Lv.75s helping, but that’s totally untrue. Almost any Lv.75 can solo it, including yourself if you already have one to 75. The NM is an Earth Elemental named Polevik, who spawns after you touch a stalagmite in Ordelle’s Caves. Once defeated, touch the stalagmite again to receive an item. Talk to Ailbeche again to complete the quest. Congratulations! You’ve acquired your first of many amazing pieces of artifact equipment.
Mid-High Levels 40-60
- With all but one job ability on hand already, and your artifact armor so close that you could just reach out and grab it, these levels are an easy breeze. You acquire a second of three tiers of Shield Mastery at Lv.50, same with Raise. At Lv.55 you get Holy. Please, never use Holy in parties. It’s merely for show. It costs 100 MP and deals virtually no damage, even with your above-par skill level in Divine magic. Starting at Lv.50, you have to begin doing your limit break quests every five levels until the very end. These are really annoying and trivial, but what has to be done, has to be done. If it makes you any happier, your artifact armor is the best in the game, so it shouldn’t be a very big deal. Also, you get some of the easier coffers in the game to acquire. Even Castle Zvahl is easy, since all the coffer spawns are so ridiculously close. Just be sure to come with a map.
Your Artifact Armor
- …Is the best thing that’ll ever happen to you. Seriously. It’s like… the embodiment of all things good in a set of equipment. Every piece is amazing, and every piece will last you until your final levels, and I’m not kidding at all. It even looks cool, if superior stats aren’t enough. Looking at your AF leggings (footwear), which are acquired at Lv.52 first. They have a really nice defense boost as opposed to a lot of other boots you could be wearing. They’re amazing for fighting undead. Not only do they give you +5 to charisma for intimidating more, they also boost your Holy Circle job ability’s duration, so your whole party can intimidate them for even longer, that is of course assuming you lose enmity. The best part about them, though, is their +10 Shield Skill. Like, holy crap! That’s at least two to three levels extra skill to your highest stat! It also means with Shield Mastery, more TP and less chance of being interrupted. And if that’s not enough, a +15 HP boost just gives you icing on the cake. Next in your awesome line of equipment are your hand pieces at Lv.54. Again, a very nice boost to defense, as well as dexterity (for landing hits, and therefore keeping hate). They also give you a resistance to light, which should go without saying, seeing as how you’re a Heavenly knight. On top of which, they boost your enmity. Again, another boost to HP, just in case they’re not already good enough for you. Next is your AF head piece. This piece is really odd. It’s a circlet, yet it gives you like the most defense out of all the other AF head pieces in the game. It’s so tiny, made out of a brass-like material, yet it’s so awesome. Like your last two, your Lv.56 headpiece armor will boost your defense and HP by a fair amount. This one boosts your mind, though, allowing for more potent Flashes, and slightly (if any) better Cures. Of course, that’s not the best part. It also boosts your enmity by 2, and gives your Cover the ability to take magical hits directed at the target too. Your leg pieces at Lv.58 also have a huge defense and moderate HP stat, but give you a boost to agility (for evading, parrying, and further boosting your shields), and also give you some Enhancing Magic skill. I’m not really sure what the Enhancing skill is for, since the only spells Paladin gets in that category are Protect and Shell, which are totally non-reliant on skill. I suppose if you’re subbing Red Mage for the “Brick Wall” strategy it would help. Oh yeah, and these leg pieces boost your enmity too. Now for the final piece, the body piece, the end-all be-all artifact piece for any tank. A whopping 47 defense, 20 HP, and 4 vitality and an additional +2 enmity. Need I say more?
High Levels 60-75
- With your artifact equipment in hand, you’ll be the envy of all other tanks in terms of damage taken and enmity. It’ll of course make all party scenarios a lot nicer since taking less damage and boosts to everything else will mean less need for cures. And with all that enmity, you won’t ever lose hate unless a Black Mage spams spells or the like. Once you hit Lv.61, you get a new spell called Reprisal. Reprisal is just great; making your main A+ skill, Shield, activate even more. On top of this, it also reflects some of the damage you took right back at the enemy that hit you, like Blaze Spikes. The bigger your shield, the more damage is reflected, meaning blocking more with a smaller shield won't be any more preferable than with a big shield with this new spell. At Lv.62, you get your final non-merited job ability, Rampart. Rampart gives the whole party a large defense boost (works well with any AoE or any problem with enmity), as well as gives the party a magic shield, meaning no damage or enfeebles from spells for its entire duration. If that’s not enough, it also gives a huge boost to enmity when used. Now you have, like, seven means of getting spike hate, PLUS Cover, so if you still can’t get it back, you can still take damage for the person you’re covering.
- Paladins are helpful tanks in end-game situations. For larger-scale scenarios, Paladin will often be seen not even engaging battle, just Provoking and tanking monsters with high defense and evasion.
- The job-specific Mythic Weapon Skill for Paladin is Atonement. This is an incredibly powerful and super high-enmity ability that literally makes it so Paladins don’t even need enmity equipment to keep hate and lets them focus on defensive gear. Get it as soon as possible.
- (Please add information about Dynamis, Limbus, Salvage, merit parties, etc.)
- Your main support job, giving you a number of beautiful boosts that can’t be ignored. First and foremost is Provoke, which gives you the means of tanking your first half of your game. It’ll be used all the way until Lv.75 with no questions asked. On top of Provoke, you get Berserk, Defender, and Warcry. Though I strongly urge you move away from Berserk in party scenarios, it can be used effectively as another means of keeping enmity, especially when timed right using weapon skills. Defender, however, boosts your already super-high defense by 25%. Warcry just gives you an eighth way of keeping hate, should you need it. It gives everyone in the party a boost to attack; the more people it hits, the more enmity you get by using it. At Lv.50, you get Double Attack, which is just a really neat-o job trait that helps with keeping your own damage and TP relatively high.
- Not one to be used in parties, but can be a great Lv.1-15 solo support job. With Pollen at Lv.1, it can make up for your lack of Cure until Lv.5. It also opens up a way to customize your stats and your spells. Though, after Lv.15 its usefulness with direct-damage spells falls apart, you do get the useful Cocoon and Metallic Body spells to aid in your already great defense, allowing you to far out-last other monsters. Cocoon will enhance defense by 50%, which is a very significant amount for a Paladin.
- A good late-game support job. Since you have so many ways of getting and keeping hate, losing out on good support job abilities and traits isn’t a big deal. It opens up the ability to use two swords and Utsusemi. Of course, when tanking, it’s always best to use a shield. Especially since blocking with a shield can alleviate interruptions with both Utsusemi and cures. It allows Paladin to be a really decent soloer later on. But never use it in early and mid-game party scenarios.
- Proven to be a great support job for both soloing and even partying mid-game. Since Flash is basically half of Provoke, and Animated Flourish is basically half of Provoke, you don’t have much of a problem. It allows use of Sambas for a Regen or Refresh effect for everyone in the party (as long as they’re connecting hits on the monster), and allows use of Waltzes for curing oneself without being interrupted or use of MP. Since Paladins have low attack power, keeping hate through nothing but weapon skills can be trivial, so using Steps, Flourishes, and Waltzes can really help.
- I’ve never seen a Paladin sub Monk for real party scenarios. And I really don’t know why. If the Paladin has Flash, he or she can totally grab enmity and keep it almost as good, if not better than with a Warrior support job. Though base damage will be lower, higher vitality and HP means more survivability. Also, taking less damage means a lower drop in enmity. Counter opens up enormous possibilities of not only completely avoiding attacks, but getting more enmity with the counter. With Dodge, you can avoid more attacks too. Though less useful, Focus can help for landing attacks. It’s a lot better when used with a multi-hit weapon skill to ensure damage is kept higher. Finally, Chakra. With your already enormous pool of vitality, Chakra can be another alternative for occasional free HP recovery. Boost gives a fairly large amount of enmity as well, so having that in place of Provoke every 15 seconds can help keep your already high enmity higher. Especially when you have all that enmity+ equipment, it can possibly even give Boost a higher enmity count than Provoke. If that’s not enough, it works on you, not on the target, so if your party pulls a link, you can get enmity on both targets at once.
- A great support job for power leveling. With Auto Refresh and a Parade Gorget, you can have 2 mp/tic Refresh at all times. And with Stoneskin up constantly, you won’t take damage, so you can rest better. Plus, with all your enmity+ equipment (namely AF), you can keep hate better than any other power level in the game. Once your power levelee finds a target, just throw a cure on him or her, and then use Sentinel and Rampart and you’ll almost never lose hate.
- A middle-ground between White Mage and Blue Mage that is most viable during endgame. Like White Mage, you get more MP, and your cures will be more substantial. But where this subjob really shines is at endgame damage reduction. Use of Stoneskin, and Phalanx will greatly reduce your damage taken, and, along with Fast Cast, will allow you to cast without fear of spell interruption. This is great against enemies with fast attack speeds, but low damage, often leading to just plain taking zero damage. Use in parties is limited, because you will have some trouble holding hate without provoke, however, with enough +enmity gear, Flash, Blind, and Sleep can get you started, with Blaze Spikes and Enspells keeping the mob's attention on you. This works best after level 68, when you have access to all of the useful spells, and when you're accompanied by a RDM, BRD, or COR who can keep you Refreshed.
- A nice support job for when you already have Beastmaster leveled. It is widely believed that your Charm success rate is actually based on your Beastmaster's level as if it were your main. By that, I mean that if your Beastmaster is level 10, Charm won't work very often past level 10 as Paladin/Beastmaster. However, if you already have Beastmaster at say 75, your success rate will be greatly improved. Since a soloing Beastmaster looks mostly for survivability and healing spells, a Paladin subbing this job can perform almost as well as the main job itself. In later levels with Auto-Refresh and some more pet commands at your disposal, this is a brilliant support job for any Paladin wishing to solo.
Paladin as a Support Job
- As an amazing main job, Paladin suffers as a support job. Though it will add defense, that isn't the real reason you would sub this. Paladin adds very minor cures, making it useful for soloing. It also adds Auto-Refresh, high shield skill, and the Shield Mastery trait, making it mostly only useful for a Blue Mage who wants to tank later on in the game. Remember, Paladin has a ton of abilities for getting and keeping enmity, such as Flash and Sentinel- both very useful things for tanking.
Overview of Job Abilities, Traits, and Spells
Your Two-Hour Ability
- I always say a job’s two-hour ability is basically like summing up the job in one or two words. Your’s gives you insane amounts of enmity and makes you block all physical damage for thirty seconds. What’s it called? Invincible! It’ll certainly allow you to save your party. If you use it while partying, you’ll almost be guaranteed to not lose enmity, so using it in a bad situation is a good idea. It allows you to outlast the monster while your White Mage cures you to full. Even if he uses Cure IV a bunch, you won’t lose enmity, so it’s okay. It can also be used if things look dire, you can use Invincible and then train the target away from the party. Since you won’t lose enmity, and since you won’t take damage for a whole 30 seconds, you can save your party’s life this way. A third use is to use Invincible if you get aggro while sneaking around, such as going around looking for the Aht Urhgan Staging Points for example. If you get aggro, use Invincible, then pop a quick Warp Cudgel or Warp spell and get out before you get owned. Invincible is a great two-hour ability, and has uses both inside and outside of parties. The ability may be great, but you also should note that it won’t prevent any magical damage. Meaning if you’re fighting a Black Mage monster or something else that can cast death-raining spells, you’re out of luck. But that’s what Rampart is for.
- Holy Circle is probably the most useful of all of the AoE intimidation abilities. It doesn’t do much, and it doesn’t have a long duration. However, it’s great in that it expands your Undead Killer job trait to everyone in the party for its duration. The only problem with it is you don’t usually lose hate anyway, so anyone else intimidating the target isn’t really going to be all that relevant. In much later-game situations, you may find yourself in parties with nothing but fellow Paladin tanks. If that’s the case, and if you’re fighting undead, you might be able to time it so that everyone uses it one after the other to have a stronger Undead Killer.
- Shield Bash is one of my favourite job abilities to use. Acquired at Lv.15, it’s your second job ability that gives your shield yet another use. Dealing a tiny amount of damage, possibly stunning the victim, and giving you Provoke-like enmity, Shield Bash is a really useful job ability. On a five-minute recast timer, it can be used every two or so fights to help you get your edge back if you lose hate. With an Aegis shield, this job ability’s damage is almost as high, if not higher than your weapon skills, so can be used to get hate even better.
- Sentinel, acquired at Lv.30, is another hate-grabbing, defense-boosting job ability that really does the trick. It actually gives the user Provoke-like enmity when used, and simultaneously gives the user a 90% defense paling. When I say that, I don’t mean if you have 100 defense, it’ll give you 190. When I say that, I mean, it cuts down damage taken by 90%. Say you’d normally take 100 damage from Goblin Rush. If you use Sentinel just in the nick of time, you’ll only take 10 damage. It’s a great job ability to use when timed properly. However, this paling wears off during its thirty second duration, and can only be used every five minutes. So, it may take some timing, but it’s a very useful job ability.
- Cover is a hugely useful job ability, despite its random duration. It can last anywhere between 15-30 seconds, but can be increased by 4 seconds per merit at Lv.75. With a three minute recast, it can be used about once per fight too. It’s acquired at Lv.35 and is useful throughout the game. What it does is allows you to take all damage for a target party member for the whole duration. The only catch is, you have to be between the monster and the party member for it to take effect. Since it has a low duration, it’s best to place yourself before you use this job ability. This basically frees the party member for the whole duration, so other members can heal him or her, and you can hopefully grab hate with another job ability. With your AF head piece, the effect also covers magical damage. With your relic body piece, the damage taken with this job ability active will actually convert itself into MP. 20% of the damage to be exact. Also, the sword called Save the Queen will boost your Accuracy by 20 when covering someone
- Rampart is acquired at Lv.62, and is your last normal job ability. It gives all party members in range a defense bonus (similar to Warrior’s Warcry ability, but for defense instead of attack). On top of which, it gives a huge boost to enmity, and also gives the party a Magic Stoneskin for its duration. This means that for a certain amount of damage, it will completely negate all damage taken via magic spells. Rampart’s defense bonus can also overwrite defense-down ailments if a monster uses one on you.
- Chivalry is a useful group 2 merit ability for Paladin. It gives an enormous boost to enmity and converts your TP to MP. Using the ability at 300% TP gives the user roughly 400 MP. The downside comes in that it’s really only worth using at 300% TP and it can only be used every 20 minutes (10 with full merits). With the new Mythic weapon skill for Paladin, Atonement, this job ability isn’t quite as useful as it used to be, since your TP is probably better used taking the enmity from that than Chivalry. However, it is still wildly useful and should at the very least be acquired.
- Fealty is like your own personal enfeeble Stoneskin. Basically, it will boost your resistance to all ailments by an enormous amount. This doesn’t just include White, Black, and Blue Magic ailments, either, this works for monster job abilities and the like as well. This basically eases your mage’s role in the party, and makes your life better. The job ability’s duration is a cool minute too. Though, its recast is 20 minutes, you can bring it down to 10 through merits. Because it only lasts for one minute, you have to time it well to get the best effect. It's also been seen to greatly reduce the damage taken from high-damage spells such as Mijin Gakure and Meteor, but this is inconclusive.
- Undead Killer is your first job trait acquired at Lv.5. It doesn’t do much except occasionally intimidate an undead-family monster. Intimidation works similar to Paralyze, in that it will prevent some physical and magical attacks targeted towards you. It can save a few hits when fighting undead. The chance of intimidation seems affected by your charisma stat.
- Defense Bonus is a nice bonus to your already high defense. First acquired at Lv.10, it will boost your defense by 10, and by Lv.70’s fourth tier, by 48. These bonuses do not stack, though, so subbing Warrior won’t boost it at all.
- Resist Sleep is first acquired at Lv.20, and goes all the way up to a third tier at Lv.60. Though the chance of actually resisting Sleep is quite low, it will also enormously lower the duration of the effect. This is seriously effective when the monster you’re fighting uses an area-effect sleep, and you don’t have hate. You’ll wake up really fast, and will be able to pull off all hate, and allow you to cure other members to wake them up too. It’s really nice when it actually does fully resist the effect, though. Nothing like out-running a Bogy in Valkurm Dunes because it spent the time trying to Sleep you and it failed.
- Shield Mastery helps your most useful combat skill in ways no other job trait does. It basically acts as a Store TP for your shield blocks, in that each tier will boost the TP you get from being hit by 1 each. Your first tier at Lv.25 gives you +1 TP, your second at 50 gives you +2, and your third at 75 gives you +3. On top of all that, it will prevent interruptions if you block the attack with your shield.
- Auto Refresh at 35 is a super amazing job trait that every mage wishes they had. It gives you 1 MP every three seconds permanently. Meaning you don’t have to rest as much, and curing yourself requires a lot less conservation of MP.
- Guardian is a meritable job trait that simply lowers enmity loss when using the job ability Sentinel. It’ll lower your enmity lost for its duration by 19% per merit, up to 95% fully. Sentinel gives you Provoke-like hate as it is, and it only lasts for 30 seconds so the usefulness lies in how the hate won’t decay as quickly and thus giving you half a minute of virtually no chance of losing enmity. Using Sentinel with full Guardian and then Provoke and maybe even Flash will pretty much stamp hate on you for the whole fight.
- Iron Will adds a spell interruption-down effect to Rampart. Each time this trait is merited, you will have a 19% interruption reduction so long as Rampart is active. This is a mildly useful trait. When tanking, especially subbing Ninja, this trait really does shine for tanking, but with the short duration of Rampart and the natural job trait Shield Mastery, its usefulness is outweighed by other meritable abilities. The maximum amount it can be merited to is a 95% reduction.
- Cure is the primary spell for any healing mage. You’re not a healer, and you’re not a mage, so why do you have it? Two reasons. One is the lesser reason for healing yourself and alleviating a lot of cures that your healer has to spam on you. Especially since you have Auto-Refresh at 35, you can actually outlast a lot of monsters when soloing or in a normal party scenario. Its second use, however, is a lot bigger. When healing oneself, you receive a little extra enmity than when healing another person. With that said, using your cures can seriously buff your already high enmity. Using them frequently will allow you to keep hate. Since they heal about 3.75 HP per 1 MP in general, Paladins with higher MP can potentially outlast those with higher HP (assuming they don’t get one-hit KO’ed). Paladin gets the first four of the five tiers of Cure. Only White Mages get the fifth tier, so you shouldn’t feel left out.
- Banishes and Holy are fun to use and cool to watch. However, their damage to MP ratio is horrifically low. Even though you’re a Paladin with high Divine Magic and a ton of mind, these spells do horrible amounts of damage. They do have two functions, however. Banishes can be used to lower the weapon resistances on certain undead monsters, such as skeletons and ghosts. Holy, on the other hand, has a casting time of 0.5 seconds, and is quite powerful (but costs 100 MP, so use it wisely). With that said, Holy can easily be magic burst on Transfixion, Fusion, and especially Light skillchains to deal extra damage. I strongly urge you to not use Holy to magic burst in party scenarios, but it can be fun outside of parties, when just goofing off or doing stuff that doesn’t really require you to take a lot of enmity or cure yourself frequently.
- Protects and Shells are a very useful line of enhancing magic for anyone. Though, your White Mage will most likely be using this on you, so you shouldn’t have to use it on yourself. In such cases your White Mage neglects owning these spells or whatever, you can use them on yourself. Protect boosts your defense and Shell boots your magic defense. Though you don’t get the final fourth tier of Shell, you do of Protect.
- Raise is a godsend when things don’t go the right way in your party. Let’s say for the sake of example, your only healer dies and he didn’t have Reraise up. You could Raise him yourself. Raise is basically like casting Cure on a fallen friend to raise his or her HP from zero to… something higher than that. Raising a fallen friend can benefit in two ways. One, it saves time from having to run all the way back from their home point, and two, it restores 50% of their lost experience points from being knocked unconscious. The downside to Raise (aside from its huge MP cost) is the fact that it will put its target into a Weakened status. Weakness cannot be removed and often lasts around 3-5 minutes. As you may have guessed, it’s generally pointless casting it on anyone Lv.25 or below, since they could probably make up their lost exp in less time than it would take for weakness to expire.
- Flash is a useful spell you get at Lv.37 that does two things. One thing it does is severely blinds your target for a short duration and you will be able to avoid 2 or 3 hits (if its fully unresisted). Using it just before a monster uses a powerful attack can really save yourself a lot of damage, especially since it’s pretty much an instant-cast spell with 0.5 second casting time. The other, much more prominent use is for grabbing hate. The spell has such a huge enmity boost, it can be used in place of Provoke, easily. Just be aware of its 45 second recast time.
- Reprisal is the last spell you get (aside from Protect IV) at Lv.61. This spell is an Enhancing spell that will actually help you block with your shield even more often than before, while actually reflecting some of the damage taken right back at whatever hit you. The bigger the shield you are using, the more damage is reflected. It's been noticed that a really large shield reflects around half of the damage taken, while a small one will only reflect about one-tenth. This means that while smaller ones will activate more, it evens out in the long run. This spell is great in every scenario for its small 24 MP cost and half-second casting time, but it only lasts for 1 minute and can only be used every 3 minutes, but with haste gear can be reduced to even lower recasts. This spell greatly reduces damage taken and should be used often.
The How-To Guides are user created guides editable by anyone. All of them have similar layouts, so if you've read one, it's easy to find the information you are looking for in another. And if you are a newcomer to this game, the Beginner guide may teach you a few things you didn't already know.