Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers Hands-On with Machinist

A couple of weeks ago we had the chance to sit down with an early build of Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers at the media tour. During our time with the upcoming expansion, we had a chance to check out all of the Job changes.

You can find our master post about the media tour, and a list of links to each job here.

This article is based on play of an in-development build of FINAL FANTASY XIV: Shadowbringers, and content in the final version is subject to change.

Ranged DPS Role Actions

Role Actions in Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers will no longer be selectable. Once players obtain the level of the Role Action, it will be automatically unlocked. Depending on the Role, players will have a different number of actions available to them.

Machinist will have the following Role Actions.

Machinist

One of the biggest surprises during our time with Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers was the Machinist. The re-work of this job has essentially made it the expansions third new job.

As someone who has always loved the aesthetic of the Machinist since it’s release with Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward, I was quick to pick the job up. However, because of it’s complexity, it soon fell to the wayside. It’s the job I hated to hate. However, it’s not an exageration when I say that the 5.0 Machinist has me incredibly excited. So excited in fact, that I found it difficult to pry myself away from the job when trying to check out everything else at the media tour. Is there something we maybe forgot to include in our coverage? Blame Machinist.

Getting right into it, they’ve redone the Job UI for Machinist, eliminating ammunition altogether and also removing the buff on Hot Shot. Machinist now has two bars to monitor during combat: heat and battery.

Your normal combo (which upgrades to the heated shots with traits at levels 54, 60, and 64) and Barrel Stabilizer will help to fill the heat gauge. After the heat gauge is at 50, you can use Hypercharge to overheat your weapon, giving you access to Heat Blast and Auto Crossbow. Heat Blast is a single target weaponskill that will reduce the recast time of both Gauss Round and Richochet, which are now charged actions. Gauss Round and Richochet have a max charge of 3. What this means is when you’ve accumulated 50 heat, you’ll use Hypercharge and depending on the situation, you can choose to use the Auto Crossbow (cone AOE) or a single target Heat Blast which will also give you essentially half a charge with each use while overheated.

The other thing to watch is the battery gauge. This gauge will, once filled to 50 or higher, allow the Machinist to call forth the Rook Autoturret. At level 80, the Rook will be upgraded to the Automaton Queen. Hot Shot, which is now an OGCD ability will contribute 20 to the battery gauge, as will it’s upgraded form Air Anchor at level 76. Two other actions, Drill and Bioblaster can also help to fill the battery gauge, though they share a recast. Drill is a single target weaponskill while Bioblaster will give a DoT to enemies in a cone.

Lastly, there’s been a slight change to Wildfire. Previously, when setting up your burst, you would have to wait for Wildfire’s timer to hit zero before it “cashes in” the damage. Now however, once you use Wildfire, the icon will become “Detonator” allowing you to trigger it early. A constant source of frustration for me on Machinist was lining up a burst, using Wildfire, and then having the enemy die before it could go off. That’s not a problem anymore! Similarly, the Automaton Queen’s Pile Bunker attack (used via Queen Overdrive) can be executed early as well.

Overall, I’m extremely excited for the changes coming to Machinist. I won’t claim to know what the perfect rotation will be yet with all the new bells and whistles, but with the new actions and upgraded aesthetics to the job, I can see a lot of former Machinists coming back to the job and I cannot wait to get my hands on this once Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers launches.