The Murkiness of Damage Potential

A quick note on finding the most damage output for a given job or class isn’t as easy as one might thing. The damage in this game is a bit more convoluted than most. You can’t just pick one stat and pump it and say “that’s good enough” because it doesn’t entirely work that way. Plus, most pieces come with a set amount of accuracy and you have to build around ACC first, and the other stats secondary. This makes the whole issue a bit of a quagmire and it’s much more difficult to get a bead on how much the damage of one stat really influences another.


First, let’s start with the basic stats. You’ve got WD or Weapon Damage, which gives you the largest increase to damage that you’ll get, on average depending on your job or class it is worth between 5 and 8 of your main stat. Your main stat is the main damaging stat that your calculation goes by and it’s different for most but not all. Melee DPS are STR, except NIN which is DEX. ARC and BRD are DEX as well even though they’re ranged. Magical damage dealers are INT and cures and healing such things are going to be MND. The only stats that are NOT used for damage currently are MND, VIT and PTY all of which have different uses already assigned to them. MND increases the potency of heals, while it doesn’t increase damage Cleric Stance swaps MND and INT making it effectively INT when in that stance as either SCH or WHM. VIT increases HP and PTY increases MP. So as already mentioned, all stats have a use but no stat in particular is going to be your end all be all for damage output. Some classes prefer DTR for increased damage output, others prefer crit, while others yet like BLM for example prefer Spellspeed. The damage returns vary per class and you can’t easily ascribe one stat as being best unless you’re talking about their main stat or their Weapon or Magic Damage stat from a weapon itself. Which, to be honest wouldn’t be fair as either are far stronger than their lesser, Critical Hit Rate, Determination and Spell / Skill Speed. The highest yet known is around 0.38 stat weight per, meaning that for every one stat it’s equivalent to adding say 0.38 of your main stat. This can get a little confusing but in general it helps to make the most sense overall I’d imagine.

So while it would be nice to be able to say, well DTR is the best because for melees it increase their overall damage for auto attack more than it increases their weapon skill damage but it also increase their weapon skill damage without relying on SE’s poor implementation of a RNG system. This makes the damage done from event to event more normalized and stable as you’re not relying on the percentage of a chance to occur anymore and are instead directly increasing your damage by a set amount. It's unfortunately not quite that simple exactly, each class/job has a general stat weight that favors some stats more than others and most of them are already figured out. Generally speaking DTR (DET if you prefer) is the strongest for melee but not always and generally runs pretty close to CRIT for a variety of reasons. Stat weights generally function as a fraction of either comparable WD or main stat (STR, INT, DEX). Also, there's a correlation between WD and how much main stats and stats like DET affect damage output, meaning you can't just say DET = x amount of damage across the board because (again, if I'm operating on outdated data please update me) unless something has changed this has been in play since 2.0 started meaning that an increased WD will have a different relationship to say STR and DET than a different WD.

Here's a few instances of why it's kind of murkier than how some might put it:

  1. DTR influences auto-attack damage at a higher rate than it influences the damage of a weaponskill, which is why DTR isn't exactly the end-all-be-all for mages nearly as much as it's used for Melee. Some jobs attack faster/slower than others for auto-attack and additionally each job/weapon has a different sort of base damage potency for their auto-attack which DTR affects linearly to all but differently since each classes auto attack potency is different.
  2. Each stat seems to slightly benefit one job or class a little differently, as each class has some slight variation on how their damage is calculated, it's small but it's there.
  3. Skillspeed does shit-all for TP, if it didn't suck it would increase TP regen rate proportional to the speed at which it increases your attack rate, keeping TP loss equivalent with your standard 2.5GCD.
  4. The amount of CRIT or any stat you need to reach exponential gains is not achievable anytime soon and we can likely expect a tiering system, some introduction of dLVL (we have “none” atm)
  5. Crit is also +50% damage, not +100% (1.5x not 2x damage) but you're generally right on the way to estimate damage output. It's easier if you just assume potency, say you have a 15% Crit rate, and you know crit damage is +50% it's easy to “estimate” the increase to overall potency, assuming the skill doesn't auto-crit like Bootshine, or a Kas Ninjutsu. In the above example you'd have an increase of +7.5% damage equivalence.

Now I used quotes for estimate because SE has a notoriously poor pRNG function that has an annoying issue with streaks, wherein you'll hit streaks of nothing then streaks of crits or what-not. Normally over the course of a standard 10 minute fight or so you'd even out but in FFXIV it's not uncommon to have one to several fights where you are streak heavy or streak light and so your crit rate dramatically can change from fight to fight. Not really a huge negative against crits, it's annoying sure, but it's nothing new either.

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