Final Fantasy XIV: Dawntrail Hands-On with Ninja

6 Jun 2024

Last month we had a chance to play a preview build of Final Fantasy XIV: Dawntrail as part of the North American Media Tour. During our hands-on time, we were able to experience many of the Job changes that are in the works. For the Jobs that we weren’t able to personally get hands-on with, we still had an opportunity to look into the changes that will be coming when Final Fantasy XIV: Dawntrail arrives on July 2 for PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series, Mac, Windows, and Steam.

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

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

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

Heya Ninja enjoyers. You probably saw that there were quite a few changes and additions to Ninja shown in that Job Ability trailer. The amazing thing is that they all seem fun and just straight-up upgrades to what you have now. If potency numbers aren’t hilariously broken on launch Ninja will be in a great spot.

Huton is gone! Mostly- Well the buff is gone, and it has a new effect. Now, it is an AoE ninjutsu that deals less damage than Katon, but also grants you Shadow Walker, or the Hidden effect without being Hidden that you can access through Suiton. It is now just an option to use if you need hidden and there are multiple targets. Because of those changes, Armor Crush needs something new to do, and that thing is buff Aeolian Edge. When you use Armor Crush, you gain two stacks of a new buff and UI element, called Kazematoi. Each Aeolian Edge used will remove one stack from the buff. This just seems to be a way to keep Armor Crush relevant and doesn’t change much with the rotation at all. At level 66 Mug is upgraded into Dokumori, this is when it begins to grant 40 Ninki on use. It will upgrade again when you’re adventuring through Dawntrail. We’ll get to that.

Your first new ability in Dawntrail is Kunai’s Bane, an upgrade to Trick Attack that turns it into an AoE that hits as hard as a Raiju. Something that is easy to forget is that as this is an AoE, it has no positional requirement. So, when you get this upgrade, you don’t have to worry about that anymore. At 96, Dokumori (the new version of Mug) will be upgraded to also grant you a new buff called Higi. With that, your casts of Hellfrog Medium and Bhavacakra will be upgraded to new versions- Deathfrog Medium and Zesho Meppo. These being the big frog and close-range spin attack, seen in the Job Ability trailer. Both have nearly double the potency of their un-buffed versions. That is some spice to bring into that Dokumori buff window. Some role-wide defensive buffs are sprinkled throughout the 90’s as well with Second Wind receiving a potency buff at level 94 and Feint getting a duration boost from 10 to 15 seconds at 98.

At 100 you learn your new capstone ability Tenri Jindo, only accessible when you have the Tenri Jindo buff granted from Ten Chi Jin. Yup, here is that TCJ follow up. It is a targeted AoE usable at a 20 yalm range That just looks cool and hits hard. Not as hard as your Hyosho Ranryu, but it comes in second place behind it now. You don’t have to use it immediately, or before moving after Ten Chi Jin. The buff lasts for 30 seconds after the ability was used, so you can adjust to stay alive and then weave this oGCD in.

These changes are just good. From my perspective they add some shiny new things that don’t get in the way They seem like they’ll feel like they belong instead of being bolted on to the rotation. There is a high potential for tragedy though… Have you realized how many career Ninjas are going to end up accidentally pulling a boss? Now that Huton has become a targeted AoE… I’m just saying, watch out for that muscle memory.

Momochi Attire