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Strategies and information in guides may not work for everyone.
Summoner: Ruler of the Gods
Summoner is a really interesting job. It’s really awesome to play, awesome to look at, and super flashy to show off to all of your friends. It gets some of the coolest abilities and the most enormous pool of MP in the game. On top of having a ton of MP, it also gets some of it back over time from the highly sought-after Auto Refresh ability. However, Summoner isn’t really chosen for parties to use these special attacks and to let their gods of ultimate power to deal damage. Instead, Summoners are chosen for parties for healing. A really awesome thing about the job is that Summoner doesn’t have to buy all of its spells. Instead, they battle the avatars they want to control and the avatars learn their own abilities. You also have a bus-load of MP for any one using them, so Summoner is a wicked class for anyone wanting to play it.
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.
- Humes have a really good combination of survivability and longevity. Having a nice base pool of MP, and decent mind for higher-tier cures will make your curing more effective and let you have your summons out longer. With a moderate amount of HP, vitality, and agility too, the Hume’s endurance is quite high too.
- Though your high strength goes un-needed in this job, your high mind really won’t. Since Summoner gets no native Healing and Enfeebling Magic skills, it will help you out a lot, capping your healing a lot faster than other races. Slightly lower MP can be easily made up by equipment. With high natural HP and vitality, staying alive isn’t a very difficult task either.
- Possessing the most enormous MP pool in the entire game, Tarutaru Summoners can out-last any other in terms of base. By Lv.75 (as SMN/WHM), you’ll have almost 200 more MP than the second-highest races Hume and Mithra. This means you can have your avatars out and can cure a whole lot more than any other race in the game. Higher agility makes up for lower vitality for survivability. Just be careful, your HP is about 200 less than any other race’s too!
- The cats possess very well-rounded stats for this job, a lot like Hume, but with more emphasis on avoiding hits than taking less damage. Mithra’s low natural charisma and vitality really doesn’t play much of a vital role in this job, so it can be seen to be a very well-played combination, as long as you stick to more little cures and less enormous cures.
- The race that picks-up where the job lacks, allowing for a super balanced Summoner with equally high HP and MP. Having a pool of 1200 MP isn’t going to be worth anything if you’re down in one little poke. That’s where Galka shine in this job is being far more survivable than the other races. You can even make up for the detriment in MP in low levels by being able to equip Astral Rings without worrying about dying as easily. Especially with an enormous vitality for endurance.
- Though in early levels for higher-end cures you’ll want to use clubs, the majority of the game will have you using staves. Staves give a nice boost to both HP and MP, and have higher damage per hit (and generally over time, too) than clubs for soloing. Essentially you’ll be looking for higher MND+ wands (and a Pilgrim's Wand if possible) until about Lv.30 (keep that Pilgrim's Wand), and then you’ll want to move to staves and Grips. At Lv.51, you get access to the Elemental Staves, ferocious weapons with the hidden effects to not only make spells more powerful, but lower your avatar perpetuation cost. If money is troubling you, having the normal quality ones are okay. However, if you can muster up the cash, having the high quality ones are noticeably better. Having the Light Staff out for Cures and Carbuncle, and the Dark Staff out for resting or for using Fenrir can save a lot of MP. Similarly, using any of the other elemental staves for any of your elementals or avatars can reduce their perpetuation cost by a large amount. Using the wrong avatar with the wrong staff (such as using Ifrit with a Water Staff out), it will actually increase the perpetuation cost. The normal quality staves lower the perpetuation cost by 2 MP/tic, and the higher quality ones by 3.
- Even from the very start of Lv.1, you’ll want MP-increasing armor. Though if you feel you already have enough MP, move with higher defense, since yours is really low naturally. Unless you’re Tarutaru, some pieces of your race-specific armor will have MP boosts. You may also want to work on mind to increase your cures closer to the cap. For soloing, especially soloing the avatars, any Spell Interruption Rate-down equipment or Haste-boosting equipment can be quite useful. At Lv.50, there is an armor set called the Austere Robe set. It's amazing and a number of pieces will actually out-do your artifact armor. I highly suggest you pick it up when you hit this level. Only some race's RSE can surpass this armor set's awesomeness.
Advanced Job Quest
Quest: I Can Hear a Rainbow
- This quest is based a lot on luck, and has proven to be super-annoying for some people. First thing’s first; you have to go out and kill leeches. Almost every leech in the game will drop this, so going almost anywhere will work. You are looking for their Carbuncle's Ruby drop. It’s a super-rare drop even if you have a Thief with Treasure Hunter II in your party. If you are doing this immediately at Lv.30, you’ll want some help. The proven best place to go is Buburimu Peninsula. There are three beaches that are just chock-full of leeches to kill. Beware of undead and the Goblin Bounty Hunters, though. You have to believe me that the first step to getting Summoner is indeed the drop. You actually can’t start the quest until you have one. Once you get the Carbuncle’s Ruby, head down to Windurst Walls and click on the “House of the Hero” at the very north end of it. You will receive a cutscene where Carbuncle will talk to you, telling you to collect colours of the rainbow. This is where the quest really gets annoying. Now, you have to go around to different areas collecting different weather effects. You won’t get the effect unless you zone in the area while it’s occurring. So if you see it, zone out, then zone in. Also note that you must have your Carbuncle’s Ruby in your inventory at the time you enter the area to get the effect. The orange one is easy, just zone into another area that doesn’t have a weather effect. For red (fire), go to Valkurm Dunes or either Altepa Desert. This is the most difficult one, as heat waves aren’t very frequent. However, you can get yellow (earth) here too. Awesome, now you have three of the seven colours. Green is wind, so your best bet would be to go to a place like La Theine Plateau. Blue is water. The same place works. Actually, save this place ‘til last, since you have to come here later to finish it. Next is light blue. No, Qufim Island doesn’t actually have a snow weather effect. Your best bet is to go to Beaucedine Glacier. While you’re there, get your Vahzl Gate Crystal in Xarcabard. You get to Beaucedine by going through Ranguemont Pass from East Ronfaure. If you don’t have the map for that area, just follow the right wall after you pass through the giant door. Anyways, after that, you’ll want lightning for your last one. A number of areas has this, so I’ll leave it up to you to decide, but Pashhow Marshlands and Konschtat Highlands have it fairly frequently. Rainstorms aren’t lightning storms, so don’t get them confused. Once you’ve completed this, go to La Theine Plateau to G-6, and trade your ruby to the ???. Congratulations! You are now able to be a Summoner, and are capable of summoning Carbuncle.
Soloing 1 to 10
- These ten levels are possibly the most fun levels you’ll have. You have three choices. One is to not summon at all and fight yourself, curing yourself when needed. This isn’t as fun, though. The other is to summon Carbuncle (most MP-efficient) and wail on monsters side-by-side. Finally, you can get Carbuncle to attack one monster while you beat the crap out of another one. This last choice is really good for getting experience chains. Note that you can’t rest while your avatar’s out, as he drains your MP over time. Picking a few pieces of MP gear and then leaving the rest to defense can be a really nice way of doing things at this level. It is also recommended that you use the Field Manual for Refresh due to the fact that Carbuncle will be free during the duration of this spell. Make habit of grabbing Signet before you go outside. Not only will it make soloing a lot easier through defense and evasion bonuses, but it will also allow you to rest HP and MP without losing TP, and will also earn you conquest points with which to spend on items. Just remember that you cannot rest while you have any summon out.
- I’ll admit, these levels are less than pleasant for Summoner. You only get Cure 1, but you’re expected to be the main healer due to your enormous MP pool. Though not a good option if there are newcomers in your party, having someone power level your party can allow you to freely use your avatars to fight in battle. If you have an avatar like Shiva or Garuda, you can expect some high damage. Another benefit to Summoner is that it can pull link-free if you tell your avatar to disappear after you’ve grabbed one monster’s attention and started pulling, but having a summoner pull isn't really recommended just because it adds too much down time.
Soloing the Mini Terrestrials
- You have two options to get your avatars. One is to do higher level, full-party fights called “Primes”, or you can do the mini fights. The Primes can be obtained easily at any level as long as you have some help. These minis, however, have to be fought at Lv.20. At least that’s what the cap is. These fights are really difficult, and it’s really dependent on food, equipment, and knowledge of how to do these things. First off, the equipment. You’ll need a ton of MP. If you can’t find MP-boosting equipment for one or two pieces, get some defense or HP-boosting equipment. For your weapon, a Hermit’s Wand is great when casting, and then get a pole for finishing it off if you can’t with your summon. Before you can even do these fights, I should mention you need a lot of Fame in the nations of where you get the avatars. The toughest one is Norg, where you get Leviathan. When you get the Mini Tuning Fork, you can use it to teleport to the crystal (for Prime fights you have to run to the boss). Grab a whole bunch of Yagudo Drinks, Ethers, food, etc. Go into the fight, call Carbuncle, and send him to attack. Note that the avatars aggro to magic, so cast Carbuncle well out of range. When he attacks, use a drink, then run back down near the entrance. When Carbuncle is defeated, summon him again, then send him to attack when the avatar comes close. Run to the top. When he’s defeated again, summon him and then continue the process until the avatar gets down to about 50%. At this point, you go all out. When the avatar uses its two-hour ability, you use your’s. Re-summon Carbuncle, send him to attack, and then use your two-hour. With your two-hour active, you don’t lose MP per tick and with drinks, Carbuncle won’t disappear. This will give you time to run to the opposite side and use an Ether. When Carbuncle dies, rinse and repeat. You should be able to get off three in total. Though each time you’ll end-up consuming ALL MP, and you need at least 40 MP for Searing Light to do anything. If you’re lucky, three Searing Lights should finish the monster off. Do that for all six terrestrials, and you’re good. Congratulations!
- Assuming you don’t already have them through Primes, you should have your mini fights done, so you should have at least Carbuncle and the six Celestial Avatars. Now you can start doing some really good enfeebles and buffs with your avatars, and even be used to open or close skillchains and perform magic bursts. The most prominent thing that you’ll get is at Lv.25 with Auto-Refresh. At Lv.22 your life becomes a little bit easier in terms of main healer because when subbing White Mage, you’ll get Cure II out of it. Aerial Armor and a number of other Blood Pacts will make your life easier by alleviating some cures. Lots of people appreciate the aid of your abilities. Since all 9 avatars learn Blood Pacts independently, you get a generally constant flow of abilities. I suggest when you hit Lv.40 to do yourself a favour and get a Himmel Stock. It increases the cool-down of both Blood Pact timers by three seconds, but will boost your MP by a whopping 63!
Your AF Weapon
- You know, it wouldn’t be a bad weapon if you didn’t have the choice of the Himmel Stock as I previously suggested. I’d say something about “You know, if you couldn’t afford the H.S. staff, this is a good alternative,” but it’s not hard to get. On the other hand, you have to get this quest done in order to get your other artifact armor, so you should get it done anyway. And if for any reason, that extra three seconds on your Blood Pacts really bothers you, a 20 MP boost is still better than none at all (30 with a grip).
- On the bright side, this quest isn’t all that difficult. Your first step is to go to the House of Hero in Windurst Walls again. Carbuncle tells you to go to Port Bastok. Head there and talk to Juroro at I-8, and he will hand you the Earth Pendulum. At this point, bring along a Lv.65+ friend (or 70+ to be safe) and head to the Cloister of Tremors, which is through Quicksand Caves’ J-7 entrance. Once you get there, trade your Earth Pendulum to the Protocrystal and select “The Puppet Master”. Now you fight a Hecteyes named Galgalim. Defeat him, then go back to Bastok. Talk to Juroro again and then go back to Windurst Walls and talk to Koru-Moru at E-7 for your Kukulcan's Staff. Congratulations! You have your AF weapon.
Mid-High Levels 40-60
- All right! Now you have your AF weapon with which to put it away and probably never use it. These levels are going to be a lot of fun for you. On top of these levels are where you get your artifact armor, but you also get access to the Elemental Staves. I don’t really have much else to say about these though. You’ll still be the main healer in your parties with the occasional buff. Ooh! If you’re partying with a Corsair, he’ll have Evoker's Roll, giving you a beautiful 5 MP/tic on average. Also in these levels you can get your hobo outfit, a.k.a. the Austere Robe Set. A number of pieces are even better than your AF. In the long-run, it actually gives you a decent number to MP as well as a solid +10 to Summoning Magic skill, Avatar Perpetuation Cost -1 on your body piece, and “Blood Pact” ability delay -6 seconds. I’ll talk about this set in comparison to your artifact armor set. The Austere isn’t actually AF, but it’s quite good in its own right. One final note about these levels are your Spirits. This is where your Spirits actually become worth casting. Especially with all of this Summoning Magic skill + equipment, they cast their spells a lot faster. Also, they get Ancient Magic, which takes a loooong time to cast, but have some of the coolest effects and the highest damage you could ever imagine. They also don’t consume your MP (other than perpetuation cost). And at Lv.50 you will have the ability Elemental Siphon, in which you summon an elemental spirit to suck MP from. It's best to summon the spirit that goes with elemental day and/or or current weather. Either one will give a bonus(that stacks) to how much MP you receive. Your Summoning magic level also influences this, so Summoning Magic skill + items can help greatly as well.
Your Artifact Armor
- If anything, your AF looks really cool. First off are your pants Evoker's Spats. I love how these look because they look like bell-bottoms from the 70’s. They’re pretty darn good too, Evasion, MP, and avatar accuracy up, enmity down. These make a great trade for the Austere Slops, and are available as low as Lv.52. Next piece is your Lv.54 AF gloves Evoker's Bracers. These are slightly less useful in that they give a small MP boost and some vitality. The Austere Cuffs are better than these, but they’re still pretty decent. Especially when soloing with their exclusive “Occasionally converts damage taken of avatar element to MP,” meaning “If you have Ifrit out and he is hit with Fire II, you’ll restore some MP.” Your Lv.56 boots are next Evoker's Boots. These large clogs boost your MP and agility, while lowering your enmity further. These are debatable. The Austere Sabots gives slightly less MP and no evasion, but lowers enmity by 1 more and will boost your Summoning Magic skill. Lv.58 is your AF body piece Evoker's Doublet, which is also debatable in terms of greatness. Buffing your MP by 15, and mind by 3, plus giving your avatar an extra +20 to elemental resistance makes this a better choice for people who find themselves MP-challenged. For soloing players or people who have too much MP to use, keeping the Austere Robe for its avatar perpetuation cost and Blood Pact delay-down stats might be better. Luckily, your cool-looking AF horn at Lv.60 Evoker's Horn is better than the Austere Hat. It gives you a beautiful MP+20, INT+3, and an even more nice Summoning Magic skill +5.
- As a side note, Summoning magic has an effect on avatars. It is generally agreed upon that for every skill point over the cap, your avatar gains a +1 to attack and +1 to accuracy. It also boosts the time of Ward blood pacts by a 1:1 ratio on 30 second wards (such as Crimson Howl), a 1:2 ratio for 1-minute wards (such as Rolling Thunder) and a 1:3 ration for wards lasting 1:30 (such as Hastega.) If you have 10 skill points over the cap, that means Crimson Howl gains an additional 10 seconds, Rolling Thunder an additional 20 seconds, and Hastega an additional 30 seconds. A Ward’s effect cannot exceed 3 minutes, excluding Aerial Armor and Earthen Ward. In order to gain these benefits, you're skill MUST be capped before any summoning magic skill equipment comes into play. Summoning skill also is important for spirits as it lowers their internal timer to casting spells.
High Levels 60-75
- Now you can start soloing the avatars for your friends, or doing them by yourself for the rewards. Hopefully by this time you have Fenrir and Diabolos. But if that’s not the case, you can easily get into parties to do them now. Another great thing about these levels is your awesome ability to solo. Generally you’ll be fighting the kind of monster others wouldn’t dare fight. I’m talking, of course, of Bombs. Your avatar beats it up far away from you, and you just run back and cast your avatars out whenever it’s defeated (much like beating the avatars). If you’re lucky, they’ll self-destruct, and you’ll be well out of range but still get all of the experience points.
- With End-Game activities, Summoner is a very hit-and-miss job. In Sky, Summoner's main role is to damage-deal; namely with Predator Claws and Nether Blast, assuming you have Diabolos at the time, while supporting the party with Cures and -Na spells. A lot of the time, a Summoner can actually out-damage most of the other mages in the party due to Nether Blast being un-resistible. Even on Kirin, Diabolos can hit for about 500 points of damage regardless of everything he's got. Unfortunately, Summoner swings more towards the "miss" side of things in Dynamis where Summoner's ability to deal that kind of damage is somewhat hindered. We all know in "DIEnamis" that the goal is to kill everything tactfully yet extremely fast. Summoner sometimes isn't able to get their avatars in and out before the mob is claimed and attacked. Because of this, Summoner sometimes has to rely on perpetuating Carbuncle for a cheap 20 damage per hit and perhaps a ~500 Meteorite. Summoner is thus forced to keep buffs such as Earthen Ward, Ecliptic Howl, and Noctoshield on the party he or she is in. More often than not, Summoner will just be used as a sub-standard healer. In Salvage, Summoner doesn't shine all that well either. The job has to get a ton of things unlocked in Salvage to be of any use to the party. Support job, job abilities, and magic all need to be unlocked while a lot of its equipment is pretty mandatory as well. Once all of this is unlocked, however, Summoner does a fairly decent job of dealing damage and buffing the party. The nature of Salvage is to rest, zerg a boss, rest, kill a mob, and so forth. Because of this, Summoner is able to get in good resting time and be able to do what Summoners do.
- The primary support job for Summoner. It gives access to a wide variety of spells to help your party out, whether or not you’re main healing. It allows you to cure others and buff yourself a lot easier than if you weren’t subbing this job. White Mage subbed also gives a nice boost to MP and mind. Scholar can potentially take the place of White Mage sub, but nothing else will give you Curaga, Erase, Reraise, Shellra, or Protectra. By Lv.72, you can use teleports to get around, but with the lack of natural Warp, you can’t do any major teleporting.
- This is a sub for those Summoners who just can’t get enough MP. Subbing Scholar will allow you to use Light Arts to cure longer and faster than subbing White Mage. It gives slightly less MP than subbing White Mage, but that’s made up for by the 10% discount with Light Arts in all three MP cost, casting time, and recasting time of all White Magic. Sublimation*** comes in handy when in a party without a Red Mage. Conserve MP is another useful trait that you can get from subbing Scholar to occasionally reduce MP costs of spells. The other benefit is that subbing Scholar is the only possible way you could ever get Regen II- a very useful spell.
- Generally a lot less-used because of its lack of powerful, high-tier spells as a support job, but Black Mage can still be a decent sub. It gives you the most MP out of all other support jobs and even gives the useful Conserve MP trait. Warp and Escape are useful spells that no other job gets, though at the expense of free Sneak and Invisible.
Summoner as a Support Job
- The only purpose people see in subbing Summoner is for its larger MP pool, which is accompanied by Auto-Refresh. Well, those people are half right. Summoner also has the abilities and power of its avatars at its disposal. This support job gives a number of buffs such as an area-effect Blink or Ice Spikes. And let's not forget, you can tell your avatars to do certain attacks which can open skillchains for your weapon skills, assuming half-accurate avatars are capable of landing their attacks. Though less useful than other support jobs, it does have a lot of potential if you let it.
Overview of Job Abilities, Job Traits, and Spells
- Summoning Magic spells are all level 1 and include the nine Avatars and 8 elemental spirits. I'm considering making a section based specifically for Blood Pacts. Until then, or if I just don't make it, go to Summoner and look at its list, or click on individual avatars to see their list of pacts.
Your Two-Hour Ability
- Astral Flow is one of the best two-hour abilities in the game at low levels. It totally reduces any perpetuation cost of your avatars and elementals and allows them to use their ultimate Blood Pacts. The Blood Pacts are super-powerful and area-effect. Under level 70 they can be described as the most powerful Summoner attacks and are often the sole reason people have Summoners in their parties, making them useful for things like BCNMs and the Promyvions. At Lv.25, using Astral Flow will actually give you a positive MP over time as a result of no perpetuation cost. When you use your Astral Flow Blood Pacts, they will consume all of your MP. Without any form of Refresh, that would mean you don’t have an avatar anymore and would have to re-cast. The Blood Pacts will consume all of your remaining MP and will only work if you have at least twice your level in MP (If you are Lv.25, you’ll need 50 MP. If you are Lv.75, you’ll need 150 MP, etc). Having more MP won’t increase the power of the attack, so it might even be in your best interest to use most of it prior to using the ability. Just make sure you don’t go beyond the required MP. Lastly, this two-hour ability lasts a full three minutes (second longest out of all two-hour abilities to Beastmaster's Familiar which boasts a 30 minute duration), meaning you can use your ultimate Blood Pact up to three times!
- Elemental Siphon is Summoner's only non-two-hour ability and acquired at Lv.50. What this does is adds even more longevity to the Summoner's MP. It will actually absorb MP from the Summoner's elemental and give it straight to him or her. The amount of MP restored is directly your Summoning Magic skill, subtracting 50. That means that with capped skill at 75, you'll restore 219 MP. This number can be enhanced even further by multiplying it by a modifier based on the day and weather. An additional 10% will be added for matching a weather effect or the current week day, and an additional 5% will be added if the weather effect is a double weather. The absolute max MP acquired via this ability would be 396 (includes merits, equipment, and full modifier).
- Max MP Boost is just what it implies. Starting at the low level of Lv.10 and hitting a fourth tier at Lv.70, it really shows Summoner’s prowess as the highest MP job in the entire game. All four tiers give +10 to your maximum MP for a total of +40.
- Clear Mind makes your life a lot easier once you hit Lv.15. It increases your MP recovered while healing. Summoner is lucky, like Black Mage, in that it gets all five tiers of it. Without this trait, you recover a mere 12 MP, then 13, 14, 15, etc. With your first tier, you get 15, 16, 17, etc, and by Lv.70 with your fifth tier, you get 27, 30, 33... It’s really a super-useful passive trait.
- Resist Slow allows you to occasionally fully resist the effects of Slow. Though, that doesn’t happen very often. It does, however, greatly reduce the duration of the effect. Getting its first tier at 20 and its last at 70, Summoner won’t have to worry about even longer recast times for its avatars or spells as much.
- Auto Refresh is Summoner’s pride and joy job trait. At the low level of 25, Summoner gets a very handy 1 MP recovered every 3 seconds under all circumstances. Its effect is useful in two ways. The first is that you can last longer, getting a small amount of MP over time. The second is, when you have your avatar out, it will effectively reduce your avatar’s perpetuation cost by 1. It’s for this job trait alone that a number of people actually sub Summoner (that and, of course, its enormous addition to MP).
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.