Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker Hands-On with Paladin

We recently had a chance to play a preview build of Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker as part of the North American Media Tour. During our hands-on time, we had a chance to play with many of the updates coming to each Job. For those that we weren’t able to personally get hands-on with, we still had an opportunity to look at the changes that will be coming when Final Fantasy XIV: Endwalker releases on November 23.

You can see all of the Paladin changes, along with our thoughts below. Additionally, you can view the upcoming changes on our wiki by clicking on the Endwalker tab on the Paladin Job page.

You can also find more coverage of the Endwalker Media Tour here.

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

Sometimes things slip from the Live Letter and we get to talk about them during the media tour.

So while the dev team has said that there are now Pure and Barrier healers, they unfortunately neglected to tell us about the third type- Paladin. Honest mistake, happens all the time. Let’s talk about our new “Blue Healer”.

Your first newly changed healing cooldown is Divine Veil. The barrier effect from receiving healing during Divine Veil has not changed, but in addition to that, the party members receiving that barrier will now also heal immediately for about half of the amount of a Clemency cast. We don’t know exactly how much that will be as potency numbers are wacky and subject to change, but as long as this is decent, your healers will appreciate the extra help. It seems like this would go off before the actual mechanic you wanted to shield for, but at least it will top people off before whatever the bad thing is goes off.

Intervention also got a glow up to pump out extra healing. Now the initial 10% damage reduction lasts for 8 seconds, and there are two additional buffs that will be applied. Knight’s Resolve is another 10% damage reduction for 4 seconds, so it will require good timing while Knight’s Benediction is a 12 second buff that is a regen for a little stronger per tick than Gunbreaker’s Aurora. Intervention is still only for party members, but don’t worry we’ll talk about your own supercharged cooldown and regen in a bit.

Before we get into the completely new stuff, we need to look at the changes to Requiescat as it became a lot less confusing to look at. The ability does not have any interaction with how much MP you have when you cast it now. It grants 5 stacks of a Requiescat buff that are expended when you cast spells to increase their damage by 100% (double what it is now), and remove their cast time. These stacks also last for a total of 30 seconds giving you a lot of wiggle room to fit those 5 casts in the fight’s timeline.

Speaking of spells, Holy Spirit and Holy Circle have both gained a moderate self-heal as an additional effect which will fix a little bit of Paladin’s perceived lack of incidental self-sustain. I mean, you could always Clemency but that is an extra GCD so… Incidental healing during your rotation a little like Brutal Shell or Storm’s Path is nice to see.

Alright, into the level 80+ stuff. Holy Sheltron is an upgrade to Sheltron (no way!) received at level 82. Remember that whole Intervention change with the new Knight’s Resolve and Knight’s Benediction buffs? Yeah they were added to Sheltron to create this new Holy Sheltron. In addition both versions have been upgraded and their 100% block chance buff lasts for 8 seconds, up from 6. 100% block, a bit of damage resistance and a regen for 50 gauge is really great. Spirits Within has also been upgraded to Expiacion, gained at level 86.This is an AoE OGCD with the same 30 second cooldown but more potency and a moderate 50% damage falloff on secondary targets. I missed that this was changed into an AoE at my first glance, so definitely remember that as this changes while leveling!

Finally we can look at the capstone abilities at level 90, also known as Unlimited Blade Works. Blade of Faith is the first combo continuation for Confiteor and shows us the pattern that the devs were going for. This is an instant cast AoE spell that restores MP and does about half of the damage of Confiteor. Blade of Faith is the next follow up dealing a bit more damage and still restores MP. Blade of Valor is the combo finisher dealing close to the same amount of damage as Confiteor, regenerates MP and leaves behind a 21 second DoT that cannot be stacked with Goring Blade. So as a summary, Confiteor starts this combo, there are 3 follow up moves of increasing potency ending with a DoT that you’ll need to skip a Goring Blade not to overwrite.

Paladin has really only gotten better on paper. More self-sustain, a more interesting magic burst window with less difficulty to execute,  and even better party buffs. Though the added “Blade” spells might end up causing adjustments for your physical buff windows. I said “Blue Healer” in the intro but that is hyperbolic. Partially because before level 88 you won’t have that full kit anyway. However, I can see many Paladins who loved that feeling of contributing to heals when things went wrong will have a lot to love.