RED MAGE GUIDE
Author: Alayna Lazriel of Balmung
Patch: 4.0 – Updated: 24 Aug 2017
Disclaimer: This is a brand new job in FFXIV released in the Stormblood expansion. The following is based solely on the information we have currently. As such, testing and updating of this guide will be an ongoing process for months to come. Any changes to potencies or tooltips will be updated promptly. All input and suggestions are welcome. I will thoroughly test them and update the guide as needed.
Table of Contents
- Attributes & Races
- Primary Attributes
- Which race is best for Red Mage?
- Race Table
- Secondary Stats
- Stat Weights
- Current Stat Weights
- Best in Slot
- Potion Table
- Becoming a Red Mage
- Job Actions
- Role Actions
- Red Mage – Levels 50-70
- Jolt, Verthunder & Veraero
- Verfire & Verstone
- Balance Gauge
- Riposte, Zwerchhau & Redoublement
- Jolt II & Impact
- Verflare & Verholy
- Acceleration, Embolden & Manafication
- Fleche & Contre Sixte
- Weaving & oGCDs
- Single Target
- Red Mage Priority Chart
- AoE Rotation
- Managing Cooldowns
- Learning the Fight
- Embolden & Your Party
- Credits & Additional Links
- Change Log
“On the eastern edge of Abalathia’s Spine lies the mountainous region of Gyr Abania.”
It is in these elevated lands that people took shelter, when a burning star guided them away from the Sixth Umbral Calamity’s treacherous floodwaters. The survivors gathered from near and far, and amongst them were refugees of the sorcerous cities of Mhach and Amdapor.
These sworn enemies buried their history for the sake of the future, and cast aside their vestments of black and white. Upon the remnants of their arts a new discipline was built, and the first red mages stepped forward with rapiers in hand to fight back against the rising tides of destruction.”
Red Mage is a new job released in FFXIV: Stormblood. With the release of a new expansion, I expect to see returning players, as well as many new faces to FFXIV. This guide will work to answer any questions you might have about the job, give you a detailed look at each ability and how it translates to the battlefield, and give you tips and pointers to increase your skill level. But first let’s take a look at what it means to be a Red Mage and what you bring to your party.
Red Mage is a ranged, magic caster that has access to both white magic and black magic. In addition, they wield a rapier which allows them to deal high melee damage in short bursts. Your role in a party is to deal high single target magic damage while also providing great utility in the form of your white magic and Role Actions. The key to becoming efficient at the job is mastering Dualcast for movement and uptime, and the management of your Balance Gauge.
Red Mage doesn’t necessarily have a rotation. It’s more of a priority system that you’ll follow and it’s quite straightforward. It is a highly proc-based job. The difficulty will lie in your ability to quickly react to your procs, while minimizing movement and maximizing uptime.
Note: Rotations aren’t always concrete. Every encounter in the game is different, so there can never be a “Master Rotation” that applies no matter the situation. You must be able to adapt. For that, the most important skill you should learn while playing FFXIV is awareness. Knowing exactly what the enemy is doing, knowing each of your party member’s location, keeping an eye on all your cooldowns and effect timers, and knowing what is going on in the environment around you.
- Single Target
For the sake of this guide I will refer to Red Mage as having two stances; caster stance and melee stance. Even though you can execute melee weaponskills at any time you want, I will refer to melee stance as having at least 80/80 mana.
The priority system for Red Mage is quite simple. Your melee combo is your most potent as far as Potency Per Second (PPS) so that’s always #1 Priority. So it will look like this:
Red Mage Priority Chart
- You’ll begin with casting Jolt II. This will trigger Dualcast and proc Impact.
- Cast either Verthunder or Veraero, then check for a Ready Proc. If you don’t get a proc, skip to Step 5.
- Cast Verfire or Verstone. This will trigger Dualcast again.
- Cast the opposite spell from Step 2, and repeat step 3 if you get another Ready Proc.
- Cast Impact. You’ll have the Impact proc from step 1. Dualcast will trigger.
- Continue alternating Verthunder and Veraero to raise your mana evenly.
- Once you have 80/80 mana with one higher than the other, enter melee stance.
- Use Corps-a-corps to jump into melee range.
- Enchanted Riposte.
- Enchanted Zwerchhau.
- Enchanted Redoublement.
- Use Displacement to jump back into casting range.
- Finish with Verflare if White Mana is higher or Verholy if Black Mana is higher.
You’ll now be back in caster stance with a Ready Proc. Just rinse and repeat using your cooldowns and oGCDs as they come up, and that’s all there is to it.
- AoE Rotation
The AoE rotation for RDM is even more straightforward than the single target rotation. As far as potency is concerned, you’ll want to switch to your AoE rotation when there are at least 3 mobs. If only two mobs are present, stick with single the target rotation, while using Contre Sixte on cooldown.
- Use Contre Sixte whenever it’s available. 813 Potency on 3 targets. Be sure to weave this under Dualcast.
- If 30/30 White and Black Mana, use Enchanted Moulinet. 600 Potency on 3 targets.
- Cast Scatter until White and Black Mana are at 30/30. 300 Potency on 3 targets.
If you have 3 mobs, it is better to cast Scatter followed by Veraero/Verthunder to raise your mana faster which will allow for more frequent use of Enchanted Moulinet. If you are at 4+ targets, just spam Scatter.
And that’s about as simple as it gets. Remember Enchanted Moulinet is a weaponskill, so you will need to be in melee range. It also is a conal attack. So make sure all the targets are grouped together in front of you when you use this action.
- Managing Cooldowns
Managing your cooldowns properly is extremely important for maintaining a high damage output during the course of a 10+ minute fight. A lot of what goes into being good at your job isn’t just reaction, its preparation. So the first thing we’ll talk about is actually the most important thing for every job in FFXIV.
Learning the Fight
A Red Mage is one of the more mobile casters. Dualcast practically allows us two and a half seconds of movement every other GCD. But still learning the fight is extremely beneficial. When you have an idea of what’s coming, you can prepare yourself by prepping Dualcast or by positioning yourself in a safe area. If you know a boss will become untargetable for 20 seconds, it might not be a good time to use Manafication for example. Knowing where to position yourself, and when movement is coming will be your greatest strength, and really the only way to learn the fight is to just get in there and practice.
Swiftcast is an extremely important cooldown for casters. It has so many uses and it’s only a 60s cooldown. Swiftcast will not trigger Dualcast, but you could use it to completely bypass Jolt II or Impact to cast Verthunder/Veraero. It should also be something you use whenever you have to move but don’t have Dualcast status effect. Once you are extremely familiar with a fight, you can use Swiftcast to cast a final spell right before a boss becomes untargetable. I’ve also used Swiftcast to quickly apply the Heavy effect if a mechanic calls for it. It can also be used to raise a fallen party member to help your healers since Verraise has an extremely long cast time. But keep in mind that Dualcast does work on Verraise, so it might be better to save Swiftcast for movement.
Embolden & Your Party
Embolden is your only personal damage buff. It has a 2 minute cooldown and it lasts for 20s. It starts off increasing your magic damage by 20% and then drops 20% every four seconds. As mentioned earlier, you will gain the biggest damage increase in the first 4 seconds of activating the buff. There are really two ways to approach when to use this cooldown.
The first is to use this immediately before casting Enchanted Zwerchhau. This makes sure that your three highest potent magic attacks are being buffed by the full 20%. Your potion should also be active during this time to maximize your damage. Now this may seem like a no brainer and really the only optimal time to use Embolden, but that’s not necessarily the case.
While the first point will benefit your personal DPS the most, you also have to consider that it also increases the physical damage for your party members. In most party compositions, especially in raid, you will have far more members in your party dealing physical damage than magic. Even if you have two casters in your party, your healers are the only other members dealing magic damage. Most standard party compositions consist of two tanks, two healers, two melee, one ranged, and one caster. Embolden only increases magic damage for yourself. So keeping that in mind, Embolden would be best used when your party members are using their cooldowns such as Trick Attack, Hypercharge, Foe Requiem, etc. This will increase overall party damage significantly more. It’s basically 1 person getting a 20% damage increase vs. 4-5 party members getting a 10% damage increase.
It really comes down to the exact party composition you are running and the skill level of each of your party members that can determine optimal Embolden timings. It will vary fight to fight and the best way to determine this is to just test all options. But in order to do that, you will need strong coordination with your party members. This usually only applies when you have voice comms during raid with your static. In most other content, you won’t have that sort of coordination. So you could choose to use Embolden more selfishly, and when you’ll gain the most benefit from it.
There are only a few boss encounters in the entire game where you can stand completely still, so mastering movement in a fight will be what really takes your damage to the next level. You always want to learn the mechanics of the fight first. Once you start to feel comfortable with mechanics, it’s time to start optimizing your damage output. In order to do that, you have to experiment, take risks, and find out exactly what you can get away with, without putting yourself or your party in danger. Figure out exactly what mechanics you can ignore, safe zones of the arena, etc. Learn how to make optimal use of Dualcast and the best times to expend your Balance gauge.