Final Fantasy Tactics (FFT) has a ton of different classes to choose from. With all these classes, skills and abilities it can get a little overwhelming. Luckily, I’ve played a ton of Final Fantasy Tactics (FFT) in my day, and I have a pretty good idea of which classes are the best and which are the worst. Some are definitely more worth your time than others. I’m not going to cover every class in the game here, but let’s highlight 5 of the best classes and 5 of the worst.
I know what you’re thinking. Squire must suck, right? It’s the first class in the game. You’re right. Squire does suck. However, Squire learns one of the best skills in the game and it’s a must-have on almost every single character: Accumulate (Focus in the WotL retranslation). This skill is one of very few skills in the game that requires no target, and it gives you +1 PA (physical attack) for free. Essentially, this skill is free JP. You can cast this skill every single round, so you’re maximizing your JP gains. This is invaluable. Other than that, yeah, Squire is mostly garbage. However, because of this one skill, you’re going to be using the Squire skillset as your secondary skillset on almost every character.
Archers suckkkkkk in Final Fantasy Tactics. The prevailing theory is that because they were so good, verging on gamebreaking, in Tactics Ogre (which FFT is the spiritual sequel to), the creators over-nerfed them. Yeah, they’re straight up garbage. They don’t learn any good skills at all. Bows and Crossbows are inferior to guns in every way. Charge is a completely useless moveset. Archers are not good for anything except as a stepping stone to Thieves.
Monks are super versatile. They do a ton of damage (with just Dual Wield/Two Swords, they become little kung fu wrecking balls). They have a very useful moveset that includes a few ranged attacks and a revive, which is surprisingly useful in a pinch. They have Counter and First Strike, both great counter skills. Counter, especially, is useful on every character as the general bread and butter for the counter attack skill slot. Fists scale incredibly well with PA and Bravery. If you have high Bravery and you’re running around using the Accumulate/Focus skill from the Squire class, you’re going to find you punch things to death in one hit.
Bard is kind of a wacky class idea to begin with. It requires you to have a male character gain tons of job levels in a variety of magic classes, which is a pretty bad idea — males have weaker magic than females in FFT. Then, as a reward, you get a very, very weak support class that has to take itself out of the fight in order to provide buffs and other support spells that other classes can do much more easily. The only good thing about Bard is Move +3. You may very well trek through the requirements for Bard on a character or two just for that but… it’s gonna hurt, and you’re going to leave the Bard class and never touch it again as soon as you have it.
The Samurai class is not particularly great, but the moveset it provides is one of the best movesets in the game. It’s capable of inflicting massive AoE damage and also providing absurd buffs to your whole team. The skillset is based on MA, so the best use of it is actually as a secondary skillset on a Black Mage (for a generic), or as a secondary skillset for Reis as a Dragoner, since her MA growth is ridiculous. Unfortunately, Samurais as a class have low Move and low MA, so they can’t make very good use of their own skillset. Shame.
You’re not going to get much use out of this skill. The skills aren’t necessarily bad, the problem is the alternatives are better than it. It doesn’t have any very attractive support skills or growths to make it useful beyond its own skillset, and if you’re trying to disable enemies, Mustadio and Beowulf are much, much better options to go with. You could argue that there’s a place for Mystics if you’re avoiding the use of uniques, but even in that scenario, the cast times make these skills hard to get behind.
Best: Black Mage
Mages in general are not very good in FFT because of the cast time mechanic, but if you’re going to make one, the best class is the first. Black Mages have the highest MA multiple and you can get one to become a pretty beefy damage dealer. As a result, Black Mages are also your go-to class for generics who want to use any skills that scale off of MA, like the Samurai skillset. A Black Mage trained as a Samurai is nothing to sneeze at. On top of that, their spells are actually quite capable of one-hit killing enemies in an AoE. Orlandeau they are not, but they are pretty useful.
Worst: White Mage
The problem with White Mages, much like Mystics, is that the alternatives are so much better, and they don’t have cast times. Chemists and Monks have revive skills that don’t rely on faith. Samurais get better, instant AoE heals and buffs. White Mages don’t offer any kind of significant buffs or heals that you can’t get from another class better, cheaper, faster and without the faith requirement. If you’re really min-maxing this game, you’re also most likely going to have low faith on all of your characters, which reduces the effectiveness of magic on them, including from White Mages. They also don’t get any good support skills. They are the fastest mage class but only as a class multiplier; their speed growth is standard. Overall just not great.
Ninjas have the best speed growth and the second best PA growth, which means leveling your character as a Ninja for as many levels are possible is ideal for any physical character. On top of that, the class itself is incredibly good. They have innate Dual Wield/Two Swords. If you have high braves, you can slap Martial Arts on a Ninja and increase its killing potential by a vast amount. Throw is not a great skillset, but it’s not bad: it gives a decent ranged option, and thrown shurikens and weapons are actually fairly good in terms of damage. This is one of the best classes in FFT for sure.
Worst: Onion Knight
To be honest, I’m not even sure what the point of this class is, except to be… a meme or something. It’s incredibly hard to get, It can’t equip skills. The point of it is, theoretically, supposed to be that it has great stat growths when it’s mastered. Two problems with that: it can’t gain EXP, and in order to master it, you have to master 16 other classes, which means your character is probably already level 99 with terrible stat growths by that point. Bad. The Onion Knight is a bad class.
That about does it for the best and worst classes in Final Fantasy Tactics (FFT).
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