Someone mentioned that Monk needs a new equipment guide so I'm making one. I try to list as many relevant pieces as possible but I get a bit burned after the Head listing. I will continue to add and modify this list as I reexamine the whole thing. I just make a page in wiki and copy it to here. The links won't work to wiki but I think ZAM has its own wiki to cover several of the links.
NOTE: Still making the list for Legs and Feet on wiki to copy here.
List from WIKI for you to Ctrl+F to find using the number in front.
5.3.1 H2H Weapon
5.3.2 Staff Weapon
5.3.3 Club Weapon
5.3.4 Blades and other stuff
=== H2H Weapon ===
The basic, bread n' butter choice for H2H weapon is high damage during the lower levels and a mix of high dmg low delay as you level pass lv70. This is mainly because the Mnk's delay gets lower and lower as he obtains new Martial Arts traits. At 420 delay base, a +86 delay on a weapon is a 20% increase in your delay while at 300 delay base (lv75) a +86 delay will be a 26% increase.
* 01 Cesti or the +1 version - There are few choices at these levels but this will do fine. The alternative will be the Cat Baghnakhs and its +1 version. My personal advice is to pick whichever the cheapest from your nearest NPC and ignore the +1 version if you are in Bastok. I went with my bare hands when I started out cause I was poor and clueless.
* 05 Bronze Knuckles - this is where you might want to pick a weapon if you went naked on the 1st one. Buy from NPC if you are in Bastok for roughly 200gil. Otherwise just stick to your Cesti.
* 09 Brass Knuckles +1 - this is the one you will want to buy if you are rich and it's available in AH. Otherwise get the one below.
* 10 Legionnaire's Knuckles - If you can't get the +1 version from above, get this one as it's cheap and usable. Tropical Punches pops up here as an alternative. It might be worth it if you want the +10 accuracy. However, when you are at low level like this the extra +Dmg on the H2H weapons are worth more.
* 14 Strike Baghnakhs - worth getting this instead if it's cheaper than the one below.
* 15 Republic Knuckles or Federation Baghnakhs - This will be your 1st big buy if you didn't have the one above. Save up your gil and buy either one of these as soon as you can. Republic Knuckles seems to be the one everybody went for so they will be more expensive. If these are out of your budget, buy the lv14 one or whatever high +Dmg weapon you can afford at this level.
* 20 Cougar Baghnakhs or Sonic Knuckles - both are nice choices to replace or upgrade the lv15 weapons.
* 24 Lynx Baghnakhs - a possible choice if you feel like changing your weapon. It's not as nice as others because the lack of accuracy bonus but I did actually use this weapon for a while as a gift because I was too poor to afford anything else.
* 30 Boreas Cesti - r/e drop from Kirata, this weapon is out of reach for 1st time players. For players with a high level job, it might be worth it to camp this. The additional effect adds a very nice bit to your damage.
* 32 Impact Knuckles - I'd upgrade my lv15 weapon with this one as this one is cheap and you might need some extra cash.
* 38 Mythril Knuckles +1 - If you can afford this, buy it. If you are cheap, skip this one.
* 40 Tourney Patas - upgrade to this weapon as soon as you can. It's cheap and deal very nice damage. This is essentially an important upgrade.
* 42 Beat Cesti - I wouldn't worry too much about this until lv50. You have to get it for AF quest but otherwise it's useless.
* 48 Patas - depending on servers, these are quite decent and cheap when crafters dump these on AH for other crafters. The +1 version might be cheaper as crafters can't sell them well. Stick with Tourney Patas if none is on AH though.
* 50 Cross-Counters or Retaliators Rare/Ex version - both are a pain to get but Cross-Counters are available in the AH. Buy it if you have the gil; otherwise, buy the one below. I wouldn't camp it though.
* 50 Tactician Magician's Hooks - best poor's man weapon for this level.
* 52 Tactician Magician's Hooks +1 and +2 - If you can afford it, buy the +2 version as it will last you for a very long time. Some might argue this is better than Cross-Counters and I might agree with them if I wasn't a soloist.
* 54 Birdbanes - if you have a high level job, camp this one. It's a nice piece of weapon for monks when you have blunt resistance mob or is fighting flying mobs. I wouldn't sweat much on this, however, if I could level up pass lv70 quickly.
* 66 Tigerfangs or the HQ version Feral Fangs - get these if you can't get the lv50-52 weapons.
* 67 Vishnu's Cesti - is a decent weapon to play around with. I actually did better with this weapon compare to Cross-Counters at lv70-ish.
* 69 Acantha Shavers - another decent choice if you can buy this one on AH. Otherwise, stick with the lv50-52 weapons.
* 70 Hades Sainti and the +1 version - Big waste of gil. Use it only if you can get it for free or at very cheap price. Cerberus (NPC) is actually solo-able as a Bst so you might be able to get this as a Bst.
* 71 Shenlong's Baghnakhs - drop from the ZNM Pandemonium Warden possibly the best weapon from 70-75 here. They are super hard to get as the ZNM isn't your common household NM. I'd just ignore it.
* 72 Wagh Baghnakhs- this weapon used to be fairly common but I can't seem to find it lately. This is the best AH weapon you can get for this level. I wouldn't buy anything else unless Hades Sainti is sold at less than this one.
* 73 Destroyers - used to be prized of Mnks but not anymore. Super easy to get if you can get people to do Royal Ramble. I'd ignore this due to the much better weapon at lv77 and much less time consuming. Save your seals for your Black Belt.
* 75 Mantis - fully upgraded this weapon is stronger than Destroyers. So it's debatable if you should get Destroyers and unlock it if you have clear access to this weapon. Imo, if I could get this weapon as soon as I reach lv75, I would ignore Destroyers.
* 75 Wargfangs - upgraded to OAT version, this weapon will be excellent with Footwork. Even the +0dmg is better than Destroyers under the effect of Footwork. This, however, is not a good weapon compare to the top-tier H2H weapons.
* 77 Afflictors - a drop from the over killed Carabosse NM. It's not hard to get as you can just park yourself at Carabosse pop area and ask people there for this for free. Yeah, I'm cheap and lazy. Sue me if you think I'm wrong for taking weapon donations instead of getting this on my own. It's not a good item for enthusiasts Mnk but it's decent enough for a new Mnk fresh out of the lv75.
* 77 Savate Fists - with +4~5Dmg augmented and maybe bonus to Backhand Blow or Critical Hit Rate. This one costs a little bit of Dominion Notes to get (2500) but you can sell it to NPC for cash. I could never get the +4Dmg one but you might have better luck. I wouldn't sweat too much on this if I can't get the +4~5dmg; stick to Afflictors as you will level up quick enough to get better weapons.
* 80 Ursine Claws - with OA2-3 upgrades will be your go-to weapon if you are a soloist (e.g. no other way of getting other weapons) outside of abyssea. It loses out compare to others at lv80+ due to Martial Arts but imo it's still an option outside of abyssea. This is also a good weapon for getting TP so you can proc blue in abyssea.
* 80 Taipan Fangs - with Str/Atk upgrades or -Def upgrades are both excellent choice if you don't want to spend days getting the Ursine Claws. However, I will remind you that fire weather is very rare in FFXI. I'm not mentioning the Cat's Claws because I personally think you're much better off just keep doing the magian trials to upgrade it before using it in actual combat.
* 80 Verethragna- a weapon that is called one of the Empyrean Weapons. I mention this weapon but not Spharai or Glanzfaust is because this weapon is much easier to obtain and can easily rivals the other 2. As cool as this one looks, it's not that great at lv80 compare to other higher level weapons. It's still better than most weapons at around its level, however. Nice to use but better use something else until you get upgrades for the lv85 weapon. BTW, if you are planning to get this weapon, you better be prepared for an exhausting marathon of gathering Two-leaf Chloris Bud as this is the hardest part of this weapon trial.
* 80 Revenant Fists - is actually a decent option here as you can easily upgrade this to Revenant Fists +2. By itself at lv80, however, it's pretty much equal to a good pair of Savate Fists. This weapon is not easy to get as you need to do Walk of Echoes and it's a PITA reported by others. It's still a good weapon to aim for if you are thinking of doing weapons for multiple jobs.
* 85 Heofon Knuckles - decent weapon for lv85 if you have none of the lv80s weapon mentioned above (this make it the desperate last-pick I guess). Its main selling point is the high base damage compare to other weapons. By this level, Abyssea would be your playing field so you most likely going to cap your fStr. H2H weapon with base damage between 27~36 will put your weapon rank at 3 so you can take more power from your Str bonus in abyssea. Its weak point is the stupidly high delay so it's not that great of a weapon. I'd ditch this weapon as soon as I get something else above lv85.
* 85 Taipan Fangs +1 - with Str/Atk or -Def upgrade is the same as the previous ones. If you have time to get these then you should get them instead of the laughable Heofon Knuckles.
* 85 Ursine Claws +1 - with OA2-3 times is not a bad weapon outside of abyssea and is actually a viable weapon if you don't have Ascetic's Fury in abyssea. Of course you will need at least the AF3+2 feet to make this a useable weapon though. Even then, this weapon will be the dead-last pick on my list of recommended weapons.
* 85 Revenant Fists +1 - should be upgraded to lv90 as soon as you reach lv90 but at this level the new WS Victory Smite would make this weapon out-class everything short of the next guy below. At lv85, this weapon only loses slightly to the one below though.
* 85 Verethragna (85) - this where this weapon becomes good. Victory Smite is the WS that makes this weapon so great to have. The Aftermath effect is nice but the WS is what makes this weapon so terrifying. Getting the upgrade for this item here isn't really hard compare to the last one if you know what you are doing.
* 88 Metasoma Katars - SE recent addition to the H2H family. It's a good upgrade from the slowpoke Heofon Knuckles but this thing is still pretty slow. I actually had this weapon and I would say that it's only better than the Ursine Claws +1 inside Abyssea by a small margin without Ascetic's Fury. I'd still buy this if you can not obtain anything else better than the laughable Heofon Knuckles. However, if you actually care about Mnk then get the -Def Taipan Fangs +2. It's a better weapon and is not hard to get - it might even be easier than getting this weapon.
* 89 Taurine Cesti - this is what mnks without Revenant Fists +2 or empy/relic/mythic weapon should aim to get. The NM for this isn't cakewalk but it's not invincible. I highly recommend getting this weapon if you don't do the magian weapon trials and I'd use a brew on the NM if I don't really have any friends or LS to help out. This weapon is probably the best non-magian/relic/mythic weapon around for Mnk.
* 90 Furor Cesti - Hmm... this is not a weapon I'd recommend for usage as it only has +22 base dmg while Taipan Fangs +2 with -Def effect has +30. The selling point of this weapon is that it's really easy to get. You can simply park yourself at F-8 area in Abyssea - Altepa during the weekends and ask if people camping Ansherekh could give you the weapon for free. There are quite a bit of people camping this for the NM pop item during the weekends.
* 90 Taipan Fangs +2 - the Str/Atk one would be your best option for DD. If you are lazy on spending time for trial of the magians then try to get the -Def one. It's comparable to the Str/Atk one but much easier to get. The -10% physical Def is also a good alternative for pure soloist without friends or LS-mates. It's a good weapon for -physical damage taken built.
* 90 Ursine Claws +2 - the OA2-4 times is a slight upgrade from its previous counterpart. However, it's still fairly weak compare to Taurine Cesti but can probably be comparable to Furor Cesti with only Asuran Fists. You can get this if you like Footwork and have a lot of time. I'd just go with the Taipan Fangs +2, it's a better weapon overall.
* 90 Revenant Fists +2 - this weapon is only slightly better than its lv85 counterpart but it's really easy to upgrade so you can get this once you get lv90 with minimal effort.
* 90 Verethragna (90) - best weapon in abyssea for Mnk atm.
=== Staff Weapon ===
I'm not going to list everything as weapons other than H2H are more or less only useful certain situations.
* 51 Earth Staff or Terra's Staff - buy one of these and keep it around for skill up, proc stuff and use for Cataclysm.
* 51 Pluto's Staff - for use at lv90 with Cataclysm if you have all the right gear and atma. Since I'm cheap, lazy and totally lacking in the atma buff, I'll stick to the Earth Staff. If you want to use this weapon, I believe the optimum atma built would be Cosmos, Ultimate and Smiting Blow (according to Kinematics).
* 90 Fulcrum Pole - Nice item for Cataclysm but it's not easy to get so I'd just stick to the above weapons.
=== Club Weapon ===
Yeah, Monk now need to have a club somewhere to proc in Abyssea.
* 01 Trainee Hammer and other low level free-for-all clubs - These are perfect for proc in abyssea. Cheap and even free in events.
* 36 Warp Cudgel - This is what I use because I always have a pair with me. Costs a bit of gil but I don't have to be stuck somewhere so out-of-nowhere have to have to D4 home.
* 68 Flan Smasher - Drop from assault. Sort of rare and hard to get.
* 71 Reserve Captain's Mace - Useful because of the +6 accuracy, needs a fair bit of CP to get though.
* 74 Deae Gratia - Expensive but worth the money if you really need the accuracy.
=== Blades and other stuff ===
WTF!? Mnk with a sword? Yes, that's right, Monks can use those. Not useful in anyway except to perform proc WS.
* 01 Trainee Knife - Dagger with cooking skill, use when you sub /Nin for Cyclone and Energy Drain.
* 01 Ibushi Shinai, its +1 version and Trainee Sword - For when you sub /War with Red Lotus Blade and Seraph Blade.
* 01 Pitchfork and its +1 version - That's right ladies, Mnk/War can use Raiden Thrust.
=== Ammunition ===
There are few stuff that you can put in here that matters at low level. The selection here is slim
* 01 Happy Egg - Happy weapon, I'd use this until the 30s
* 01 Orphic Egg - Since I was a Mnk/Brd until lv10, I actually used this weapon. Yeah, I'm weird. I ditched this as soon as I could use Mnk/Dnc at lv10+
* 01 Pebble - Really hard to find and utterly useless for its level. Technically, you can use it as a pulling weapon but who would have these around to pull?
* 01 Attar of Roses - +8 HP is actually a lot a lv01 but not so much for a mnk at lv10. Still, there aren't a lot of stuff mnk can use in this slot.
* 30 Racial sachet - everything here is useful with the exception of Tarutaru.
* 50 Optical Needle - Not very useful, stick with your lv30 sachet.
* 54 Smart Grenade - This weapon has the hidden effect +4 attack. This is an excellent choice for the slot and you can get this from an easy quest. The down side is that you can actually lose this weapon by pressing the wrong button. Yeah, losing this would make you not-so-smart. I belong to the not-so-smart group btw.
* 58 Tiphia Sting - Use this if you belong to the not-so-smart group.
* 60 Bibiki Seashell - Use this if you belong to the not-so-smart group AND the alliance of "I'm too poor". It's a good item to keep around for tanking and soloing also.
* 69 Goblin Cracker - This is actually a decent item for DD and soloing. Nice if it's cheap on AH or if you can somehow get it from the NM. Replaces the Tiphia Sting.
* 70 Astrolabe - Nice item here. I'd recommend getting this instead of the above if you are planning to camp NM. It's a big waste of time imo as there are better stuff down the level.
* 70 Black Tathlum - decently nice piece but doesn't really worth its going price. If you already have it, use it; otherwise skip it.
* 70 White Tathlum - people get this for the +2 in Store TP but I don't think mnk would need this anymore. Perhaps at lv95 or 99 when there are some X-hit built for Footwork that actually matters.
* 76 Lucky Coin - if you are lucky and already have this then this is a good weapon until lv85+. This is mainly because you would be fighting lots of IT+ to lv90 in abyssea. The curor buffs and atma alone in abyssea wouldn't be able to make up for your lack of level. I'd skip this if I don't have this.
* 78 Thew Bomblet - buy or kill NM for this. This is actually a very good item for the ammo slot that you can keep using permanently.
* 90 Tantra Tathlum - It's a nice item for tanking and use outside Abyssea. I'd use Thew Bomblet over this in abyssea though.
* Special case lv70 Lamiabane, Trollbane or Mamoolbane - these are the only throwing weapon Mnk can use. I highly recommend getting 1 and keep in inventory for pulling.
=== Head ===
* 01~09 - Lots of rare/ex options for low level people, pick whichever you have.
* 09 Compound Eye Circlet - Use this if you have none of the cool rare/ex item above.
* 11 Monk's Headgear - If you can quest for this then use this or buy from AH if you can get it for cheap.
* 20 Mercenary's Hachimaki or Trump Crown - both are upgrades but I recommend the Mercenary's Hachimaki. The only useful thing about the Trump Crown is that all jobs can use it so it will save you some space.
* 24 Emperor Hairpin / Empress Hairpin - Good to have but not that important.
* 30 Mercenary Captain's Headgear - This is my personal pick for these low-levels items. I'd use this until lv40+
* 30 Dandy Spectacles - makes you look cool. I'd use this over the hairpins during the daytime. Skip this cause I think it's just for looks.
* 41 Voyager Sallet - This was hard before but it's easy now. Get it as soon as you can. Even if you only solo, you can still use this for WS.
* 50 Crow Beret - Very good solo item, the HQ is better but not really that important. You can also use this in a PT to avoid pulling too much hate.
* 56 Temple Crown - This will be your macro piece for your Focus. Swap it in every time you use Focus and change back to whatever head gear you were using
* 59 Zeal Cap - A nice upgrade from the Crow/Raven gear. I think this is probably the best head piece for a while.
* 63 Arhat's Jinpachi +1 - the NQ is ok but the HQ is what you should get. This piece is not important at lv63 but at lv90+ they will be a nice addition to your tanking gear. Still, don't sweat it if you don't have the money for this piece.
* 65 Wivre Mask or Wivre Mask +1 - This is probably a good upgrade from whatever that you had since lv40 or 50s if you didn't get the Zeal Cap; If it costs too much, just ignore this.
* 68 Cobra Cap - This is an upgrade for poor people. It's comparable to the Zeal Cap.
* 70 Optical Hat - Used to be a nice item but now it's not that useful compare to how hard to get it. Stick with your Cobra Cap.
* 71 Hissho Hachimaki - ZNM drop, a nice upgrade for both TP and WS options. However, since nobody is doing ZNM lately, you can safely ignore this if you have no way of getting it.
* 71 Shikkoku Hatsuburi and alternatives of Synergy - If you can use Synergy to come up with these items then you should give this a shot. Remember to equip the correct Evolith otherwise it would be just another normal upgrade.
* 72 Pahluwan Qalansuwa - If you have assault points free around then you can buy this. I do not recommend this piece, however, since you can save those points to do Salvage and get better gear at a later point.
* 73 Shura Zunari Kabuto - A nice little WS piece if you have the chance to get this. The difficulty of getting a Sky PT running can make this a pain to get though.
* 75 Genbu's Kabuto - Tornado Kick built piece and maybe Chakra piece.
* 75 Melee Crown - A collector piece for any complete Monk. Not very useful.
* 75 Walahra Turban - the amount of haste on this beats everything you have on the list up to now for TP. Get this and keep it around for TP.
* 75 Usukane Somen - In many situations, this is actually better than the Walahra Turban. If you have a Salvage shell, you should get this.
* 75 Denali Bonnet - Slightly lower stat but still a better looking piece than the Walahra Turban. I'd use this for solo compare to the turban.
* 75 Anwig Salade - Pick the Str/WS accuracy then either WS damage or Crit Dmg. I wouldn't recommend using this for Mnk exclusively though. I used this for Bst with the Pet Damage Taken.
* 78 Tokon Hachimaki - A WS piece, swap this in if you are using the Turban.
* 79 Brisk Mask - A potent upgrade here for both WS and TP. A bit difficult to get but you are bound to get this if you are in an Abyssea LS.
* 84 Aias Bonnet - Good WS piece.
* 85 Tantra Crown +1 - Excellent head piece for TP, get this as soon as you can.
* 85 Tantra Crown +2 - Final head piece upgrade for Mnk. Throw everything else out and use this for TP and WS. Ok, maybe not that dramatic but few other piece can beat this. Aias Bonnet is slightly better for WS.
=== Neck ===
* 03 Pile Chain - Drop from the Treasure Casket, a pain to get so I'd ignore this.
* 07 Justice Badge - Virtually useless but there aren't that many thing better for the neck location anyway.
* 18 Focus Collar - Would be nice if you can get this but I couldn't find this on my server.
* 21 Spike Necklace - Long overdue upgrade. You should get this as soon as you can and keep it for a long time.
* 33 Peacock Charm / Peacock Amulet - Best neck piece for lv33 and probably all the way pass lv70. The Amulet drop from NM that is a PITA to get while the Charm is actually cheaper recently.
* 50 Storm Gorget - a poor man's upgrade from the Spike Necklace for TP; keep the necklace for WS anyways
* 60 Bull Necklace - very good Campaign piece if you are into campaign
* 60 Chivalrous Chain - A must get upgrade to Spiky here. Keep this all the way to lv90.
* 72 Elemental Gorget - WS piece, probably the only worth getting WS piece around. The Light Gorget is actually all you really need for Mnk. Most of the good Mnk WS has Fusion/Light property.
* 73 Faith Torque - Probably the best Mnk neck piece for TP.7
* 84 Agasaya's Collar - A slightly weaker alternative from the above.
* 87 Rancor Collar - Very good WS piece if you can buy this. Expensive and does require you to cap the Tonberry hate but worth the +crit dmg bonus.
=== Earrings ===
* 01 Cassie Earring - A bit expensive but it's a nice piece for lv1
* 01 Raising Earring - you never know when you might die in a strange spot. You can get this from the tutorial NPC quests after lv4.
* 09 Protect Earring - I found this little piece in a casket and I'm really happy for free protect at lv9
* 10 Optical Earring - While this earring might look cool, it's actually not that great and might just lower your overall damage. However, if you are soloing and spamming your food like I do then this might have a space in your inventory.
* 16 Bone Earring +1 - 1st pair of real earrings you can get.
* 21 Beetle Earring +1 - Upgrade from previous version. Replaces the Cassie Earring too.
* 29 Dodge Earring - For solo only.
* 30 Wyvern Earring - For people subbing Drg. It looks nice but if you lv30 it's just another piece of junk. You might get better results once you have more haste equipments at lv40. Not really great after Lv50 compare to /War.
* 45 Tortoise Earring +1 - I could never find these in AH, maybe you'll be better luck. Upgrade from the Beetle Earring +1.
* 50 Storm Loop - Nice for lv50 but you can buy similar earring at lv55.
* 55 Spike Earring - Must get, a bit pricy but still not very expensive.
* 63 Merman's Earring - A REALLY must get pair of earrings. I still have at least 1 of the earring around. Good for DD and magic defense built.
* 72 Hollow Earring, Ethereal Earring and Bushinomimi - they are all very similar with Ethereal Earring coming out on top when you are fighting IT+ outside of Abyssea. They aren't extremely good for mnk given the later earrings will out-class them; therefore, it's better to use them for other jobs other than Mnk.
* 75 Brutal Earring - You need sea access to get this; i.e. on COP 8-1. This is probably your final piece of earring that you don't take off for both TP and WS.
* 75 Aesir Ear Pendant - Probably your go-to WS and TP earring here. It is best to use this on either WS or TP depending on what you get for the Moonshade Earring.
* 84 Kemas Earring - This is actually a good piece to go with the Brutal Earring. I'd pretty much fulltime this piece outside of abyssea. There are better choices for later levels though.
* 90 Tantra Earring - I don't have this so I'm not too sure how good this is but this will be my pick if in abyssea if I capped on everything including attack. Otherwise, even the Merman's Earring will probably serve you better.
* 90 Moonshade Earring - With either ACC or ATK for 1st pick and Regain, Counter+3 or TP Bonus+25 for 2nd aug pick. Lots of personal debate over this piece. ACC+4 is useful for outside of abyssea while ATK+4 is more useful in abyssea. For 2nd pick, I personally think the Regain is 'better' (I use this very loosely here) because you actually gain TP by just being engaged but not actually have to be in combat so you can gain a bit of TP before fighting. Counter+3 is pretty useful for tanking as Mnk is probably the tank-guy nowadays. TP bonus+25 is kind of 'ehhh' for Mnk given that many of the commonly used WS for Mnks don't really get much benefit from +25 TP extra - the best you could get is a similar boost to WS as the Light Gorget.
=== Body ===
* 08 Kenpogi - Kenpo-Gi, Kenpo is 'martial arts' and Gi is the shirt. Yeah, your 1st real piece of armor. All the Ninjas and Samurai are pretenders as only Monk knows Martial Arts. The +1 version is some what nice so keep the +1 version if you have it until lv13
* 10 Legionnaire's Harness - If you couldn't get the cool Kenpogi then you will have settle for this bondage set.
* 13 Power Gi - Upgrade from kenpogi, use this for DD all the way to lv20ish
* 15 Republic Harness - Upgrade from bondage set, I'd recommend sticking with Power Gi.
* 16 Bone Harness +1 - A worthy upgrade if you can afford it and you are soloing/tanking.
* 21 Beetle Harness +1 - Upgrade from Bone Harness +1.
* 25 Federation Gi - Upgrade from Power Gi for soloing.
* 25 Shade Harness - Get this if you can't get the above.
* 30 Mercenary Captain's Doublet - Upgrade from Shade Harness
* 40 Jujitsu Gi - A MUST GET upgrade. The +4 Accuracy will be very valuable. Ju-jitsu means the arts of gentleness/softness in martial arts. I don't see anything gentle about Mnk here with Raging Fists just one level away.
* 50 Crow Jupon - This is a good upgrade for soloing purposes. Stick to Jujitsu Gi for DD.
* 55 Master's Gi - Upgrade from Jujitsu Gi if you can get it for cheap but no need since the next one is way better.
* 57 Scorpion Harness or its +1 version - upgrade for soloing and DD purposes. This item is dirt cheap now so grab the +1 if you can.
* 58 Temple Cyclas - Swap in for Chakra.
* 63 Arhat's Gi +1 - For blood tanking and -pdt built on later levels. Not really needed at this level.
* 67 Arakan Samue - Good piece for soloing and campaign. SH+1 is still better in party situations but this will be better when you fight anything rank less than Tough.
* 68 Cobra Unit Harness - with SH+1 being so cheap I can't recommend this. It's not bad but SH+1 is better.
* 71 Antares Harness - Upgrade from SH+1 if you can buy or hunt this. I wouldn't spend too much gil or time on this though.
* 71 Avalon Breastplate - Same deal as above.
* 71 Shikkoku Togi and similar - actually not a bad body piece if you have something nice to fill in those Evolith slots.
* 72 Enkidu's Harness - Mnk's version of a cooler Haubergeon. Get this if you can. Since nobody do ZNM lately, I'd ignore this and go for any of the side grade or even stick to the SH+1.
* 72 Pahluwan Khazagand - If you have it, use it, but don't buy this. It's not much better than SH+1
* 73 Shura Togi - Requires a fair of effort but items for this drop like rain in sky if you have a LS that does Kirin. Still, if you don't have it, don't sweat it.
* 75 Kirin's Osode - fairly cheap these days, grab this one if you are still sporting that redish-pink bondage body. I'd keep using this until a real upgrade comes along.
* 75 Usukane Haramaki - Best body piece until lv75 here.
* 75 Hachiryu Haramaki - Drop from top tier ZNM Pandemonium Warden. This is not your garden variety NM so don't expect to have this piece flying around. If I had this I'd just sell it for cash (unless I have full set).
* 75 Mirke Wardecors with +10atk, +10acc, +3crit or +2DA mix together upgrades - Accessible by normal people. This piece is similar to Shura Togi and might even beat it.
* 78 Aurore Doublet - Those pieces above too expensive to get or just too hard? You are still looking red-ish pink in that SH? Don't sweat it, you will be upgraded to totally pink with this cheap, accessible and good upgrade armor. This beats everything except Shura Togi and above.
* 79 Loki's Kaftan - Very nice piece for Mnk if you can get this. I never got a chance to get this before I managed to get something else I think is better though. This is still very nice for other jobs too.
* 80 Juogi - this looks impressive outside of abyssea but inside of abyssea it's just the +1 version of the Mirke Wardecors with +3crit/+2Da upgrade (Mirke has +5 Str/Dex too). Use if you have but don't buy it.
* 86 Velox Harness - The +2% haste actually has some uses in abyssea if you don't have capped haste yet.
* 87 Alcide's Harness +1 - Not a bad piece if you can't get the Loki's Kaftan but I wouldn't spend money on this as the next one will probably be your best body piece yet.
* 89 Tantra Cyclas +1 - Try your best to get this. This is probably the best body for normal people. It's debatable if Loki's Kaftan is better than this or not. At least I'm sure you can use Loki's Kaftan while you don't have Impetus up.
* 89 Tantra Cyclas +2 - This is what I use, I like this very much and I wouldn't trade this for Loki's Kaftan
=== Hands ===
* 10 Legionnaire's Mittens - your 1st real hand armor. Keep this until upgrade.
* 14 Battle Gloves - Excellent piece for such a low level. A must get upgrade.
* 25 Federation Tekko - Upgrade from Battle Gloves.
* 27 Custom F Gloves / Custom M Gloves / Wonder Mitts - I'd use Federation Tekko but these items are worth using for WS.
* 34 Horomusha Kote - I think this is fairly easy to get now so you can get this if the ones below are bit above your patience.
* 34 Ochiudo's Kote / Ochimusha Kote - The rare/ex one is a bit hard to camp, just buy from AH if you have enough gil. A must get upgrade.
* 40 Combat Caster's Mitts - for those too cheap to get the lv34 armor.
* 54 Temple Gloves - For people who failed to get the lv34 then you are free to fulltime this piece. Otherwise, this is a WS only piece. Swap in for Boost and WS.
* 70 Alkyoneus's Bracelets - for WS. This is actually worth getting for WS if you can get it for cheap.
* 71 Shikkoku Kote and similar - Good pieces if you can get enough cool evoliths to fill the spot. In fact, I'd say these are very nice pieces for abyssea.
* 73 Bandomusha Kote - Upgrade from the lv34 ones. Very common drop from an annoying NM that nobody bother to camp now.
* 73 Melee Gloves - A very nice TP piece that should be as good as the lv34 ones (slightly weaker though). Also good for Chakra
* 75 Denali Wristbands - If you can't get the above or any of the atk gloves then this is a nice piece. Also good for -pdt built.
* 75 Hachiryu Kote - used to be good for Mnk but now it's just 'ehhh~' Stick with Melee Gloves.
* 78 Aurore Gloves - +2% haste here is so nice I would upgrade to this from Melee Gloves.
* 80 Ocelot Gloves - +3% haste! An upgrade! Not too easy to get but not extremely hard either.
* 80 Heafoc Mitts - Excellent WS piece, probably the best for these levels. An upgrade from Alkyoneus's Bracelets.
* 87 Tantra Gloves +1 - Best TP gloves for Mnk here. Get this as soon as you can. I'd still use Heafoc Mitts for WS though
* 87 Tantra Gloves +2 - The better of the best.
=== Rings ===
* 01~13 - Bastok and Sandy rings are best for these low levels.
* 14 Courage Ring or Balance Ring or a combination - take your pick, I personally like the rings below.
* 14 Mighty Ring and Vision Ring - +5 atk and +1Str will beat the Courage Ring here while +2acc +1Dex will beat out Balance Ring. Careful that the effect will wear off if you Level Sync.
* 30 Rajas Ring - THE ONE RING TO RULE THEM ALL or it's pretty close in my book. Pretty much this deserves a permanent slot on your finger until you can get a better ring at much higher level. I highly doubt that there is a ring that can clearly beat this ring outside of abyssea though. From this point on, unless otherwise stated, all upgrades will be done to the other ring slot. If you don't have this ring then you can mix and match to the ring closest to your level.
* 34 Venerer Ring - If your other ring slot is taken by the ONE RING then your other slot should use this.
* 36 Jaeger Ring - Upgrade. Used to be hard but it's pretty easy now without the level cap.
* 36 Puissance Ring - use this for WS but stick to the acc ring for DD. This is also decent if you are fighting something less than Even Matches.
* 40 Sniper's Ring and/or Woodsman Ring - Merely tastes and preferences between these. I'd stick to the Str rings for soloing easy prey.
* 49 Ecphoria Ring - nice choice and a slight bit better than Jaeger Ring.
* 50 Ulthalam's Ring - Better than ones above. This deserves a nice little spot next to Rajas Ring.
* 54 Victory Ring - Nice for WS and soloing. Rajas Ring and Ulthalam's Ring will still beat this though.
* 55 Kusha's Ring and Lava's Ring - Must be used in a pair. If you don't have Rajas then use this pair. They are a PITA to get though.
* 57 Toreador's Ring - Expensive and only worth it if you are fighting IT+ and you don't have Ulthalam's Ring.
* 63 Jelly Ring - Tanking Ring for high levels only.
* 70 Blood Ring - +5acc. Upgrade from those +4 acc rings and no negative stat compare to those +5 acc rings.
* 70 Merman's Ring - Magic defense for tanking Mnk.
* 70 Defending Ring - I think this ring is harder to get than a relic weapon... just imo only.
* 72 Triumph Ring - Overpriced imo, don't buy this.
* 74 Flame Ring - Used to be expensive but it's a lot cheaper now. However, it's still overprice imo. Stick to your current accuracy ring.
* 75 Mars's Ring - Nice ring with excellent stat for the slot. A weee bit overpriced cause by this time Abyssea will be open to you and you will be able to select rings that are close to this but drastically cheaper.
* 75 Zilant Ring and Strigoi Ring - I perfer the Strigoi Ring as it will still be useful at higher levels. These are better than most of those rings before.
* 80 Vulcan's Ring - Not as good as the ones above but I put this here since I don't do Einherjar.
* 82 Heed Ring - This is actually a nice ring for Mnk. The Subtle Blow is very nice if you combine with Rajas and AF3+2 bonus to get a total of 42 SB.
* 83 Spiral Ring - Cheap and good ring for soloing, tanking and DD. Also nice for WS.
* 87 Keen Ring - Nice ring for TP but use Str rings for WS.
* 90 Epona's Ring - Ultimate DD ring. This with rajas will be your final selection.
=== Back ===
* 01 Pear Tank - I list this here cause I can make this and I use a lot of milk during low levels.
* 04 Rabbit Mantle - 1st mantle piece that is use full. Can be made on your own but I prefer the +1 version.
* 12 Traveler's Mantle - +3 evasion is nice for soloing, not that much better than the rabbit in PT though.
* 16 Besieger Mantle - +1 atk, not bad for low level DD mantle.
* 26 Exactitude Mantle - +1 acc. not bad but if you can't find it then stick to the +1 atk mantle. There is the HQ which gives +2 so get that if you can.
* 36 Wyvern Mantle - if you sub drg this is your mantle. Best piece for its level. At lv40 you can use this combine with the Wyvern Earring.
* 37 Cavalier's Mantle - if you don't care about evasion then this will be the best Def/Vit mantle for soloing.
* 47 Jaguar Mantle - Upgrade from the +1 atk mantle. I still think the +2acc mantle will do better in party situations though. For soloing on DC/EP this will do nicely.
* 51 Accura Cape - upgrade from the accuracy mantle. I'd go for the +1 version if you can get it for cheap.
* 55 Royal Army Mantle - Not bad for WS if you can get it.
* 61 Amemet Mantle +1 - Best DD piece you can get for a long time. I wouldn't use the NQ version unless money is a serious issue. This is an important upgrade, do not ignore this.
* 64 Smilodon Mantle +1 - Might be useful for WS.
* 70 Charger Mantle - you're trading +2Str for +5atk. Depending on the mob you fight, this might be a slight upgrade from Amemet Mantle +1 if you have another mantle for WS.
* 71 Forager's Mantle - +1 Str compare to Amemet Mantle +1, an upgrade but not an important one.
* 74 Cuchulain's Mantle - used to be a good choice, it's not too good nowadays though. If you can get it for cheap at lv74 then go for it.
* 76 Belenos' mantle - Ok, this is actually good for lv76 because most abyssea PT you join will fight something so high level you can't even hit them. The bonus to accuracy will be very helpful.
* 76 Ultion Mantle - A tanking piece for Mnk, somewhat useful until you can get the strongest mantle.
* 77 Vellaunus' Mantle - Not bad for soloing and tanking. I'd go with Ultion Mantle for tanking in abyssea and this for outside.
* 78 Sharpeye MantleRare - For use only in abyssea exp alliance. Nobody really cares how you perform and the accuracy will help you keeping your hits landed in front of IT+++ mobs people are fighting.
* 89 Atheling Mantle - Best piece for Mnk atm. Always aim for this piece.
=== Waist ===
Mnk belt selection is pretty slim so this is a mini-mini list.
* 1 White Belt - Only given if your 1st character is a Monk, you can also by from AH
* 18 Purple Belt - Upgrade~! Keep using this until you get the one below.
* 40 Brown Belt - Most mortals Monk wear this. Buy or quest is up to you but it will be what you wear most if not all the time.
* 48 Life Belt - While most of the time you will stick to the Monk belts, there are times when you realize you can't hit anything (ex. abyssea pt). In those times you have to put this on. It's not that much better in general but the times when you can't hit means you are better off landing some hits so you can skill up your H2H skill rather than doing damage.
* 70 Black Belt - Get this and you'll be in the VIP club of Monks. Best belt, keep it forever as the proof that the guy practicing alone in the corner of the park can never beat you.
* 87 Light Belt - This is actually a good WS belt for those without Black Belt. You're bound to fight the NM that drop this belt if you don't have magian/mythic/relic/empy weapon.
* 90 Twilight Belt - Upgrade for people without the Black Belt. Some people can argue that this is better than Black Belt in abyssea with full Mnk AF3+2 and I think they do have some merits. I still prefer the Black Belt for tanking and soloing.
Edited, Aug 14th 2011 3:34pm by Oddwaffle