I am making this post in hope that I can help samurai that need/want it. I will write what I know, and what I have learned.
What a Samurai does
A samurai is there to skillchain. Samurai do not match the damage per second(dps) with that of dark knight, dragoon, or ranger. Samurai do not match the tanking abilities with that of paladin, ninja, or warrior. But what we can do, is gain TP quicker then most all other jobs (ranger being the only one to beat me), and skillchain with someone, Meditate, then skillchain with another. We can also back-up tank if needed, if the tank disconnects, dies, or is afk during an aggro or accidental pull. A very important role of Samurai in the party is to be the Thief's trick partner. If the Samurai has provoke, then he/she can provoke the mob when the puller gets back, so the Thief can fuidama onto the tank. Once that is done, the Samurai lets the Thief load on the fuidamas. This is what samurai are for.
How to get the job
Please refer to: http://ffxi.allakhazam.com/db/quests.html?realm=&fquest=103
Use a great katana, a polearm is another option, but should only be used to spam penta during farming, and after the TP patch, this is less useful. Though, if you are SAM/RNG, you may want to focus a lot on Bows and archery.
Monk: Monk is not generally the best sub job to pick for samurai, but it will work. The best you could get out of monk, is Boost at level 10, Focus at level 50, and Chakra at level 70. Boost, you could use pre-weapon skill, or chain boost during the pull. Focus would probably be the most helpful out of these, seeing as how samurai rely on accuracy. Chakra would most likely be used after an AoE. Any other passive traits, or abilities you would get wouldn't be worth subbing monk for.
Thief: This is probably the second most used sub for samurai. The added DEX is nice, though minute, every little bit helps. For thief, the most useful things you can get, are Steal at 10, Sneak Attack and Treasure Hunter at 30, Flee at 50, and Trick Attack at 60. Steal, Flee, and most everything not listed is for self-benefit. Sneak Attack as a sub ability is only a simple critical, not multiplied damage. Though, it is useful for a guarenteed critical every minute, and higher damage on a weapon skill. Treasure Hunter will benefit both you, and your party. More drops is equal to more gil, in exp parties, or in farming. Flee, as said above, is mainly for self-benefit. If you get aggro, you can flee, and most likely escape death. Trick Attack, just like Sneak Attack, is not as useful as it is on a thief. It does not do multiplied damage, but it will transfer some enmity none the less.
Warrior: This is the most often used sub for samurai. It provides STR, and a small upgrade in DEX. For warrior, you would get Provoke at 10, Berserk at 30, Defender and Double Attack at 50, Pysical Attack I at 60, and Warcry at 70. Provoke is one of the most useful abilties there are. It produces enmity, usually enough enmity to get the mob off of whomever is in need of help. This usually won't be used for samurai, unless in an emergency, but it is still useful. Berserk is used whenever able to be used. Especially before the samurai do a few skillchains. Defender will be used in an emergency, when the samurai is up for tanking because the tank died or disconnected. It decreases attack, so it won't be used in normal fighting. Double Attack does just what it says, every time you hit, theres a percent of a chance that you will hit the mob twice. This is not affected by the multi-hit TP patch, so you will get the TP equal to two normal hits. Physical Attack I, there isn't much to this, it just simply increases your attack. Warcry increases the attack of all party members in the area for a short period of time.
Dark Knight: This can be a sub, but it is rare. You really don't get much out of a Dark Knight sub. Arcane Circle at 10, Physical Attack I at 20, Last Resort at 30, Physical Attack II and Souleater at 60. Arcane Circle is rarely used, and arcana mobs are rarely used for exp parties. Physical Attack I will increase your attack. Last Resort is good for pre-weapon skill, but simply using this ability adds a good amount of enmity, and doesn't last as long as Berserk. Physical Attack II increases your attack a second time. Souleater really isn't very nice as a sub job ability.
Dragoon: I have seen this once, I believe. You won't get much out of a dragoon sub. Ancient Circle at 10, Jump and Physical Attack I at 20. Accuracy Bonus I at 60, and High Jump at 70. Ancient Circle will be rarely used, as dragons are rarely found. Jump will do about the damage of one hit, every one minute 30 seconds. Physical Attack I increases your attack. Accuracy Bonus I increases your accuracy, this is the most helpful thing from a dragoon sub. High Jump will do about the same damage as Jump, and relieve you of some of the little hate you have. Though, Jump/High Jump will allow for solo-skillchain wihtout the use of Meikyo Shisui.
Ninja: I've seen this about three times, all in Valkurm Dunes. The most helpful things you'll get, are Tonko: Ichi at 18, Utsusemi: Ichi at 24, Tonko: Ni at 68, and Utsusemi: Ni at 74. Tonko will only be helpful in the rare occasion of a sight aggro mob. Utsusemi could be used for tanking, but you won't be much of a tank, because you won't have provoke. Though, used often in HNM battles, as the only weapon skill that can do any major amount of damage is Spirits Within.
Paladin: I've yet to see this. You won't get much out of the paladin sub, seeing as how you won't be tanking. The most useful things you will get out of a paladin sub, are Holy Circle at 10 and Sentinel at 60. Holy Circle is the most useful of the circles, because it undead are rather common. Sentinel increases your defense without an effect on your attack.
Ranger: This is probably tied with thief sub in popularity, and tied with warrior sub in effectivness. Samurai, I believe, have the best bow skill asides from ranger. You get a lot out of this sub, including Sharp Shot and Wide Scan at 2, Accuracy Up I at 20, Rapid Shot at 30, Camoflage at 40, Barrage and Accuracy Up II at 60. Sharp Shot would be nice to use before Barrage or Sidewinder, this increases your ranged accuracy. Wide Scan will allow you to see if danger is around the corner, on the map. Accuracy Up I will increase your accuracy. Rapid Shot will randomly take away delay off of a bow attack. Camoflage won't be as helpful as the other abilities, but it will be helpful in the rare occasion of a sight aggro mob. Barrage will shoot multiple arrows at once at the mob, this will cause a good bit of damage. Accuracy Up II will increase your accuracy a second time. Though all of these are useful, the most useful thing that will come out of a ranger sub, is Sidewinder.
NOTE: I did not mention Black Mage, White Mage, Bard, Beast Master, Red Mage, or Summoner, because they are not worth mentioning for a samurai sub.
Mithra: I personally think this is the best race for Samurai, because I believe that Samurai need to focus on accuracy. Mithra will provide a higher DEX, but lower STR.
Elvaan: This is for the people that enjoy hitting hard. Elvaan will provide a higher STR, but lower DEX.
Tarutaru: Tarutaru are decent samurai, due to the DEX. Tarutaru will provide you with a medium amount of DEX, but a lower STR.
Galka: Galkans tend to be good melee characters. Galka will provide a decent amount of STR and DEX.
Hume: Hume is the average race, no high or low points. Hume will provide a decent amount of STR and DEX.
Important stats in order from highest to lowest:
DEX: Mithra, Tarutaru, Hume, Galka, Elvaan
STR: Elvaan, Galka, Hume, Mithra, Tarutaru
On the case of STR/DEX/ATK/ACC:
2 STR = 1 ATK
2 DEX = 1 ACC
Please note, that +1 ACC is not better then +1 DEX. DEX affects how many critical hits you get. The same goes for STR/ATK, STR increases your damage per hit, where as attack raises your max damage cap.
Meat Mithkabobs are generally used throughout the game for samurai, Cheifkabobs if you can afford them. Tonosama riceballs, with the AF Kote, give attack +45, defense +32, double attack +1, HP+15, DEX+3, VIT+3, CHR+3. Shogun rice balls, the upgraded Tonosama rice balls, give everything listed above, but they give +8 Double Attack, HP+30, DEX+4, VIT+4, CHR+4.
Meat Mithkabobs: http://ffxi.allakhazam.com/db/item.html?fitem=1167
Tonosama Riceballs: http://ffxi.allakhazam.com/db/item.html?fitem=2772
AF1 - The Sacred Katana
AF2 - Yomi Okuri
AF3 - A Thief in Norg!?
AF4 - Borghertz's Loyal Hands
AF5 - Quicksand Caves Coffer
AF6 - Temple of Uggalepih Coffer
For the maps: http://www.speakeasy.org/~sticks/ffxi/treasure/title.html
The best tradeskills for samurai:
-This will provide option of making the "Gi" gear (MNK/SAM/NIN).
-This will provide the option of making your own food.
-This will provide the option of making some useful armor.
Samurai in parties late game
There have been some rumours going around saying that samurai are not useful in parties 50+. This is false. Samurai are always useful parties.
Also, please refer to my response at: http://ffxi.allakhazam.com/db/jobs.html?fjob=13&mid=1088266630202852326
As most of you know, Skillchains, also called Renkei, are what a samurai focuses on. Skillchains are when two weapon skills are linked together to make an elemental effect.
At level 30, samurai get Meditate, which gives them 20% TP every two seconds until the samurai gets 100% TP from this skill. This being so, it allows samurai to skillchain with someone, then another right after using meditate.
There are 14 different Skillchain effects. Eight level 1 skillchains, four level 2 skillchains, and two level 3 skillchains.
Level 1 skillchains: Liquefaction (Fire), Induration (Ice), Detonation (Wind), Scission (Earth), Impaction (Lightning), Reverberation (Water), Transfixion (Light), and Compression (Dark)
Level 2 skillchains: Fusion (Fire/Light), Fragmentation (Wind/Lightning), Distortion (Ice/Water), and Gravitation (Earth/Dark)
Level 3 skillchains: Light (Fire/Light/Wind/Lightning) and Dark (Ice/Water/Earth/Dark)
While setting up skillchains, you need to look for the following:
-The mob's elemental weakness.
-The black mage's(if there is one) strongest spell.
-Each persons strongest weapon skill.
Then, you try to make the best combonation using those three bits of information.
A very nice, detailed Skillchain chart: http://ffvault.ign.com/screenshots/?ss=162
Another nice Skillchain chart:
Weapon Skill Acquisition
Weapon Skill -- Skill Level -- Character Level
Tachi: Enpi -- 10 -- 3
Tachi: Hobaku -- 30 -- 9
Tachi: Goten -- 70 -- 23
Tachi: Kagero -- 100 -- 33
Tachi: Jinpu -- 150 -- 49
Tachi: Koki -- 175 -- 55
Tachi: Yukikaze -- 200 -- 60
Tachi: Gekko -- 225 -- 65
Tachi: Kasha -- 250 -- 71 -- Completion of "The Potential Within"
The Potential Within:
NPC starter: Jaucribiax in Norg
Pre-requisites: level 71 and 250+ great katana skill.
1. Talk to Jaucribiax and recieve "Writing of Practice" and "Tachi of Trials".
2. Use "Tachi of Trials" until latent effect goes away.
3. Give the upgraded "Tachi of Trials" to Jaucribiax and get "The map of a trial".
4. Go to Kuftal Tunnel (L-7) and investigate the ???.
5. NM Kattenkaefer will spawn. Kill it.
6. Investigate the ???. You'll recieve "Writing of a trial".
7. Talk to Jaucribiax.
8. Go out and enjoy Tachi: Yukikaze -> Tachi: Gekko -> Tachi: Kasha. ^^
To get rid of the latent effect, you must get 300 points. There are several ways to get said points.
Use a weapon skill: 1 point
End a level 1 skillchain: 2 points
End a level 2 skillchain: 3 points
End a level 3 skillchain: 5 points
Level 3 Skillchains
There are two level 3 Skillchains, Light and Dark.
Each of the two level 3 skillchains have 4 elemental properties. To get each level 3 skillchain, you need to get all four elemental properties.
Light: Fire, Light, Wind, Lightning
Dark: Earth, Dark, Water, Ice
each of the second highest weapon skills have a level 2 skillchain property.
You can get the level 3 skillchains two different ways:
Get a level 2 skillchain, then link a high level weapon skill with the two missing elements to the skillchain.
e.g. Tacho: Yukikaze -> Tachi: Gekko (Fragmentation) -> Tachi: Kasha(Light)
e.g. Shark Bite -> Tachi: Kasha
A list of each elemental property weapon skill
-(220) Hexa Strike: Fusion (Light/Fire)
-(230) Black Halo: Fragmentation (Wind/Lightning)
-(225) Shark Bite: Fragmentation (Wind/Lightning)
-(230) Evisceration: Gravitation (Dark/Earth)
Hand to Hand
-(225) Dragon Kick: Fragmentation (Wind/Lightning)
-(250) Asuran Fists: Gravitation (Dark/Earth)
-(225) Swift Blade: Gravitation (Dark/Earth)
-(240) Savage Blade: Fragmentation (Wind/Lightning)
-(225) Spinning Slash: Fragmentation (Wind/Lightning)
-(250) Ground Strike: Fragmentation (Wind/Lightning)
-(225) Mistral Axe: Fusion (Light/Fire)
-(240) Decimation: Fusion (Light/Fire)
-(225) Arching Arrow: Fusion (Light/Fire)
-(250) Empyrial Arrow: Fusion (Light/Fire)
-(225) Tachi: Gekko: Distortion (Ice/Water)
-(250) Tachi: Kasha: Fusion (Light/Fire)
-(225) Heavy Shot: Fusion (Light/Fire)
-(250) Detonator: Fusion (Light/Fire)
-(225) Wheeling Thrust: Fusion (Light/Fire)
-(240) Impulse Drive: Gravitation (Dark/Earth)
-(225) Full Break: Distortion (Ice/Water)
-(240) Steel Cyclone: Distortion (Ice/Water)
-(225) Cross Reaper: Distortion (Ice/Water)
-(240) Spiral ****: Distortoin (Ice/Water)
-(230) Retribution: Gravitation (Dark/Earth)
-(225) Blade: Ten: Gravitation (Dark/Earth)
-(250) Blade: Ku: Gravitation (Dark/Earth)
A very nice, detailed Skillchain chart: http://ffvault.ign.com/screenshots/?ss=162
Another nice Skillchain chart:
If you have any questions, please post it on this thread, I will check it whenever I get the chance.
I will try to update this whenever it needs it.
Enjoy playing Samurai. ^^
Edited, Wed Aug 4 20:59:23 2004 by Kyoujin
Edited, Wed Aug 4 21:10:17 2004 by Kyoujin
Edited, Wed Nov 3 16:26:09 2004 by Kyoujin