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NIN Guide
Last Update: 01/10/2018
Last Gearset Update: 01/10/2018

To those who have collaborated and contributed, thank you.
卍Nightfyre and
卍Langly, for all kinds of information
卍Hotsoups for info about -ton spells
卍The team of dedicated players that constantly update the BGWiki
卍Thanks for Prothescar, Sylow and Sehachan for allowing me to steal ask very nicely for their guide formatting

The Ninja guide is a community driven resource, if there are errors or improvements please discuss them in the thread.

I. Introduction

How's Ninja doing right now?
Ninja's time in the Abyssea era was unique due in part to our inflated critical hit rate and damage. Since the end of Abyssea Ninja's been a competent damage dealer but valued less and less as a tank. While it is still a competent soloist most people would opt for something that has Treasure Hunter naturally, since subbing THF on NIN would just mean you lose a bunch of soloist abilities.

II. Support Jobs

Warrior is still the mainstay sub if you want to do damage. Berserk is simply one of the strongest DPS buffs in the game and while Last Resort does basically the same thing, WAR also has Agressor and better traits. It also has the most convenient volatile hate spike in the form of provoke.

Rune Fencer:
RUN's a very interesting sub and a lot of fun to play, giving a bit of everything. Its melee DPS actually comes very close to WAR's damage assuming you're not using Berserk (or you're attack capped anyway), which is often the case if you want to avoid the huge defense dip it does, and this is without considering lunges or resistant enemies. It also covers a lot of Ninja's weak spots, adding magic defense and evasion, as well as very reliable (at least compared to your awful -ton spells) elemental damage if you're fighting something resistant. Regen, Inquartata and Swordplay synergize with NIN's natural abilities very well. Runes also provide a small enmity boost, not nearly as much as Provoke but it does give a lot more cumulative enmity (80/320). The biggest downside is that it lacks any form of natural refresh to help with that small MP pool- remember to take a couple juices. Having Flash at the ready will keep hate focused on you and give you a small window of opportunity to reapply shadows.

Lower damage, higher survivability. Evasion bonus, waltzes, and a moderately reliable stun. Also basically the only sub you want if you ever farm Dynamis.

Treasure Hunter.

Red Mage/Scholar:
RDM was the best sub for ninjutsu elemental casting, but the problem is that with the ilevels came few weapons that increased -ton spell damage for it to be remotely worth it (not that it was worth it even before that). I imagine that /RDM can actually survive better than Dancer if you manage your MP correctly given all the tools at your disposal (assuming you don't want something stunned), but it's a lot of work for little payoff; probably better off just playing RDM itself to get the full package. SCH can serve the same sort of function as RDM sub, just with some different mechanics.

Dark Knight, Bard, Beastmaster:
If you're coming back from a long while ago you might've seen these subbed on Ninja. Not used anymore.

Black Mage:
For running around questing in so you can warp when you're done.

III. Spells and Abilities


微塵がくれ Mijin Gakure "Hidden Particle"
Origin of Name: An ability in Ninja folklore involving hiding explosive and detonating them.

Deals damage to target based on current HP of player.
This job ability results in the death of the player.

卍A patch a while ago added the effect of making you unweakened when you are raised from it, so it can be useful in some rare instances instead of just being completely worthless

身影 Mikage "Heart's Shadow"
Origin of Name: Shadows you cannot see that exist in your mind.
Grants a bonus to number of main weapon attacks that varies with the number of remaining Utsusemi shadows.

Specific testing on values pending.

陽忍 Yonin "Yang Ninja"
Origin of Name: Refers to techniques a Ninja would have used in open spaces, such as espionage or conspiracy.

Increases enmity and enhances "ninja tool expertise" effect, but impairs accuracy. Improves evasion and reduces enemy's critical hit rate when in front of target

陰忍 Innin "Ying Ninja"
Origin of Name: Refers to techniques a Ninja would have used in secrecy, such as reconnaissance and disruptive actions such as arson.

Reduces enmity and impairs evasion. Grants a bonus to accuracy, critical hit rate, and ninjutsu damage when striking target from behind.

Values: -20 Enmity decaying to -10 Enmity. +30% Ninjutsu Damage, Critical Hit Rate, and -30 Evasion all decaying to 0.

散華 Sange "Scattering Petal"
Daken will always activate but consume shuriken.

Must have shuriken equipped in the ammo slot. Darts or other throwable ammunition will not work.
卍Additional merits increase ranged accuracy by 25 per merit

二重 Futae "Double"
Grants a bonus to your next elemental ninjutsu by expending two ninja tools.

Your next elemental Ninjutsu will expend two tools and do 50% more damage. Iga Tekko/Hattori Tekko will increase this damage.

一隻眼 Issekigan "Single Eye"
Origin of Name: An exceptional ability to spot things
Increases chance of parrying, and gives an enmity bonus upon a successful parry attempt.

Parry success is substantially increased.
Grants a 300 Cumulative Enmity and unknown Volatile Enmity boost upon successful parries.

忍術 Ninjutsu
If you are returning to the game, you may not be aware of the universal tools that you can buy at Port Bastok’s Galvin’s Travel Gear Shop]:
猪ノ札 Inoshishinofuda: Nukes (Katon, Suiton, Raiton, Doton, Huton, Hyoton)
鹿ノ札 Shikanofuda: Enhancing (Tonko, Monomi, Utsusemi, Myoshu, Kakka)
蝶ノ札 Chonofuda: Enfeebles (Hojo, Kurayami, Dokumori, Jubaku, Aisha, Yurin)
The names of these tools are in reference to the old Japanese card game, Hanafuda. In one form of the game, the player that ends with the Pig(猪), Deer(鹿), and Butterfly(蝶)cards of the set is declared the winner.

Buffing Ninjutsu

空蝉の術 Utsusemi "Empty Cicada"
Learned at: 12 (Ichi), 37 (Ni), 99 (San)JP
Tool used: 紙兵 Shihei "Paper Soldier"

Creates shadow images that each absorb a single attack directed at you.

活火の術 Kakka "Living Flame"
Learned at: 93 (Ichi)
Tool used: 竜脳 Ryuno "Borneol"

Grants the caster Store TP +10. Five minute duration.

Learned at: 88 (Ichi)
Tool used: Ranka

Grants the caster Enmity +30. Three minute duration.

Learned at: 91 (Ichi)
Tool used: Furusumi

Grants the caster Enmity -15. Five minute duration.

遁甲の術 Tonko "Evasive Armor"
Learned at: 9 (Ichi), 34 (Ni)
Tool used: 忍足袋 Shinobi-Tabi "Ninja Socks"
Lessens the chance of being detected by sight.

Grants the caster Invisible (status).

物見の術 Monomi "Scouting"
Learned at: 25 (Ichi)
Tool used: 三尺手拭 Sanjaku-Tenugui "3-Shaku Long Towel"
Lessens the chance of being detected by sound.

Grants the caster Sneak (status).

妙手の術 Myoshu "Skillful Hands"
Learned at: 25 (Ichi)
Tool used: 花弁蝋 Kabenro "Aged Petal"
Reduces TP dealt when striking an enemy.

Grants the caster Subtle Blow +10. This is affected by the 50 Subtle Blow cap.

身替の術 Migawari "Body Replacement"
Learned at: 88 (Ichi)
Tool used: 木人 Mokujin "Wooden Man"
Makes you immune from a single severely damaging attack.

Negates almost any attack that would take greater than a certain percentage of your maximum HP, and then wears off.
The more gear you wear with Migawari +, the lower the threshold for negating damage.
Capped Ninjutsu skill alone (417) pushes the threshold to 73% of your HP.

Debuffing Ninjutsu

遁の術 Ton "Release"
Learned at: 15 (Ichi), 40 (Ni), 99 (San)Merit
Tool used: 打竹 Uchitake "Bamboo Rod"
水鉄砲 Mizu-Deppo "Water Gun"
避雷針 Hiraishin "Lightning Rod"
撒菱 Makibishi "Caltrops"
蝙蝠扇 Kawahori-Ogi "Bat-Fan"
氷柱 Tsurara "Icicle"

Ninja's magical nukes. Each nuke will deal corresponding elemental damage and reduce the target's resistance to another element.
See ~this thread~ for more information on ninjutsu damage calculations.

暗闇の術 Kurayami "Darkness"
Learned at: 19 (Ichi), 44 (Ni)
Tool used: 催涙卵 Sairui-Ran "Teargas Bomb"

Blind effect -20Acc(Ichi) and -30Acc(Ni).

捕縄の術 Hojo "Rope Capture"
Learned at: 23 (Ichi), 48 (Ni)
Tool used: 鈎縄 Kaginawa "Grappling Hook"

Slow effect of 15%(Ichi) and 20%(Ni). Stacks with Elegy but conflicts with white magical slow.

毒盛の術 Dokumori "Poison Serving"
Learned at: 27 (Ichi)
Tool used: 蠱毒 Kodoku "Kodoku" (A Legendary poison from the lands of China, involving trapping hundreds of poisonous creatures in a pot and allowing the last creature standing to be ground and made into poison. In Vana'Diel, they only use three poisons so the spell sucks)

卍Usable only when you wish there was a taunt button in FFXI

呪縛の術 Jubaku "Curse"
Learned at: 30 (Ichi)
Tool used: 呪札 Jusatsu "Cursing Seal"

Paralyze effect on target.

幽林の術 Yurin "Deep Forest"
Learned at: 83 (Ichi)
Tool used: 沈香 Jinko "Aquilaria Incense"
Reduces enemy TP gain.

Inhibits enemy TP gain by 10%. This effect is separate from Subtle Blow.

哀車の術 Aisha "Empathetic speech"
Learned at: 78 (Ichi)
Tool used: 草子 Soshi "Book binding"

Weakens enemy attack by 15%.

IV. Merits

Select your favored Ninja elements and push them to 5/5. Opting for one light aligned element and one dark aligned element will aid you in punching harder on magic bursts on either side of the spectrum.

Your group two options usually begin with 5/5 Sange or close to. The added racc is usually paramount for the purposes behind the job ability. It will help you gain TP, but only if you can land the hits.
Beyond sange, you are free to select your two favored elements in the table again. As you would with the tier 1 merits.

V. Beginning Gear for New/Returning Players

If you are new or are back from a long break, I recommend introducing yourself to Records of Eminence and beginning to stock up points for it. You will be able to buy Outrider Armor and the Kaitsuburi once you have enough points. The Kaitsuburi is currently one of the best offhand weapons for NIN, so it wouldn't completely go to waste.

Gear tends to get outdated quickly, but there is some gear that you should consider getting from older content because it has lasted a long time due to special effects (or it’s an accessory, which does not get outdated as easily).
Blue is a piece that enhances a key skill or is an important piece in major sets that is not easily not easily replaced.
Green is a piece that is highly recommended.
Orange is a good piece that may serve as an in-between for gear upgrading or slightly upgrades an ability or spell.
Red is minimally useful.
I will attempt to lay out the items in order of the difficulty of the content it's obtained from.

Work in progress

VI. Weapons

After they added skill+ onto ilevel weapons, you seldom should always take a lower skill+ weapon and just follow the ilevel. This makes gearing your weapon more straightforward than it used to be. For those who played during the horrible days where it seemed RMEs were basically a requirement, you will be happy to hear that the top ilevel weapons nowadays perform very closely to RMEs.

VII. Gearsets

Motenten created and maintains a spreadsheet used to calculate damage output for each job, found here. Credit, of course, goes to Motenten. Put simply, it does all the understood math for you instead of you needing to do each individual calculation yourself. Is it 100% accurate? No, but it's far and away the best model for how the game works.

7/2016: The spreadsheet is now a community project and maintained by Langly. It can be downloaded here. Please use this thread to submit fixes or requests.

Engaged Gearsets HQ
Sets based on Haste Received - Assuming capped Accuracy and pDIF
0 Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Ryuo: Path A
Adhemar: Path A

Base TP Rnds: 4.44
Base TP Time: 523.5
ItemSet 344567
15% Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Ryuo: Path A
Adhemar: Path A
Herculean: DEX/Acc/Attk/TA max

Base TP Rnds: 4.20
Base TP Time: 503.5
ItemSet 344573
30% Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Ryuo: Path A
Adhemar: Path A
Herculean: DEX/Acc/Attk/TA max

Base TP Rnds: 3.70
Base TP Time: 456.4
ItemSet 344572
35% Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Adhemar: Path A
Herculean: DEX/Acc/Attk/TA max

Base TP Rnds: 3.60
Base TP Time: 455.2
ItemSet 344569
43%+ Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/STP
Adhemar: Path A
Herculean: DEX/Acc/Attk/TA max

Base TP Rnds: 3.3
Base TP Time: 427.2
ItemSet 344565

Engaged Gearsets NQ
Sets based on Haste Received - Assuming capped Accuracy and pDIF
0 Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Ryuo: Path A
ItemSet 344568
15% Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Ryuo: Path A
Adhemar: Path A
ItemSet 344574
30% Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Ryuo: Path A
Adhemar: Path A
Herculean: DEX/Acc/Attk/TA
ItemSet 344571
35% Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Adhemar: Path A
Herculean: DEX/Acc/Attk/TA
ItemSet 344570
43%+ Haste Received
Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Adhemar: Path A
Herculean: DEX/Acc/Attk/TA
ItemSet 344566

WS Gearsets
Sets focus on fTP and WS Mods - No Acc Checks
Blade: Ten
Stat Mod: STR30/DEX30
TP Mod: 1000 - 4.5fTP, 2000 - 11.5fTP, 3000 - 15.5fTP
Skillchain: Gravitation

Herculean Gear: STR10+, Acc/Attk, WSD4~5%
Andartia: STR30, Acc/Attk, WSD10%
Moonshade: TPBonus +250
Alternates: ishvara earring
ItemSet 344074
Blade: Hi
Stat Mod: AGI80
TP Mod: 1000 - 15%Crit, 2000 - 20%Crit, 3000 - 25%Crit
Skillchain: Darkness / Gravitation

Andartia: AGI30, Acc/Attk, WSD10%
ItemSet 344601
Blade: Shun
Stat Mod: DEX73~85
TP Mod: 1000 - 0%Atk, 2000 - 100%Atk, 3000 - 200%Atk
Skillchain: Light / Fusion / Impaction

Andartia's Mantle: DEX/Acc/Attk/DA
Alternates: moonshade earring brutal earring
gavialis helm
ItemSet 344600
Blade: Metsu
Stat Mod: DEX80
TP Mod: 1000 - SB+, 2000 - SB+, 3000 - SB+
Skillchain: Darkness / Gravitation

Herculean Gear: DEX10+, Acc/Attk, WSD4~5%
Andartia: DEX30, Acc/Attk, WSD10%
Alternates: ishvara earring brutal earring
ItemSet 344599
Magical WS
Sets tend to focus on MAB + Stat Mod
Aeolian Edge: 40DEX/40INT
Blade: Yu: 40DEX/40INT

Andartia: DEX30, MAcc/MDmg, WSD10%
Save space and use your Nuking Cape!
Andartia: INT, MAcc/MDmg, MAB10
Herculean: INT/DEX, MAB+Macc, WSDMG%
ItemSet 344236

Haste (White Magic): 15%
Haste Samba (Sub): 5%
Haste (Merited DNC): 10%
Victory March +3/+4/+5: 14%/15.6%/17.1%
Advancing March +3/+4/+5: 10.9%/12.5%/14%
Embrava: 25%

Utility Equipment sets for DT- or PDT/MDT.
Herculean: Augmented with DT-4 from Fern stones. Any supplemental stats are welcome on augments.
Dark Ring: PDT -4~6%, MDT -4~6% Optional: Enemy Crit Hit Rate -1~3%, BDT -4~6%
PDT and MDT are easily capped in today's FFXI. You have quite a few options when it comes to DT- and other augmenting items like Shadow Mantle/Engulfer's Cape/Shadow Ring.

Casting Equipment can get pretty intense. Determine if your play style will leverage magic bursting your ninjutsu.
Herculean: Expecting INT+ Macc/Mattk and Magic Burst DMG+. As well as Fast Cast +6% on appropriate precast sets.
Taeon Body: Expecting +5% fast cast for a total of 9%.
Swap into the conditional items when casting appropriate spells (example: utsusemi should make use of the casting- pieces)
And if bursting off of a skillchain, swap the burst dmg + pieces into the appropriate slots for extra damage.

VIII. Events
Author: Kincard
Collaborators: Langly Nightfyre
Date Created: 2013-05-07 03:24:02
Date Last Modified: 2018-01-11 14:09:53
Updates: 64
Bytes: 46696