FFXIV Gunbreaker Guide - Rip Enemies Apart with Your Gunblade!

FFXIV Gunbreaker Guide
raphael 17.01.2020 0

FFXIV Gunbreaker Guide

Gunbreaker is the newest tank in Final Fantasy XIV. This job has a unique kit, full of various offensive and defensive actions. It’s probably the most complex tank in the game, but when played correctly, it can also deal the most damage. If you’re looking for a job that can protect your team in the frontline, but also has a lot of buttons to press during the rotation – Gunbreaker might be the perfect fit!

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Basics of Gunbreaker

While Gunbreaker is a tank job, their rotation feels a lot like a DPS. It’s based on a one-two-three single target weaponskill combo, or a two-piece AoE combo. These standard sequences contain the most of this job’s DPS output, but they also let you generate your gauge resource. This pool can be later spent on some powerful abilities – some of them are quite complex, especially for a tank job. We’re going to describe these mechanics more precisely later in this FFXIV Gunbreaker guide. The defensive kit is also quite complicated, and it features shielding, HP regeneration, and multiple ways to mitigate the incoming damage. 

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Gunbreaker requires the most actions per minute out of all tanks – there’s plenty of weaving between your GCD weaponskills. Moreover, a lot of players are attracted by the great visual style. This job wields a two-handed gunblade – these weapons (especially the highest level ones) are awe-inspiring. Your character needs to be at least level 60 at any other job to become a Gunbreaker. Shadowbringers expansion is also required. If you meet these requirements, you should go to Gridania and meet an NPC called God’s Quiver Bow. He will give you the first-class quest – The Makings of a Gunbreaker. Since this job has been introduced in Shadowbringers, it’s not inherently connected to any of the combat classes.   

Powder Gauge

Gunbreaker has a single job-unique resource called the Powder Gauge. Each time when you finish one of your weaponskill combos, you’ll receive one cartridge (you can only store up to two of them). You can spend a cartridge on one of the three weaponskills. Burst Strike is a powerful single-target attack. Fated Circle is a useful, strong AoE attack. They don’t have additional cooldowns, and you can use either of these skills whenever you want to dump cartridges for some extra damage.  

Finally, Gnashing Fang is a weaponskill that has a unique 30 seconds cooldown. It hits pretty hard, but more importantly – it’s connected to the signature Continuation combo. This sequence consists of three high potency weaponskills and three worthwhile damage oGCDs that you weave after them.

The Continuation combo can be executed every 30 seconds, and it looks like this:

Gnashing Fang->(Continuation - Jugular Rip)->Savage Claw->(Continuation - Abdomen Tear)->Wicked Talon->(Continuation - Eye Gauge)

Gunbreaker Weaponskills

Keen Edge – the combo opener – a single target attack with a potency of 200.

Brutal Shell – the second part of your basic combo. It has a potency of 300, while also providing a 150 potency self-heal and a barrier of the same strength.

Solid Barrel – the combo finisher. It’s a single target attack with a potency of 400 that also provides you with one powder cartridge.

Demon Slice – the first attack in your AoE combo. It deals a 150 potency damage to all the surrounding enemies.

Demon Slaughter – the second part of your AoE combo. It has a potency of 250, and it generates a cartridge.

Lightning Shot – a ranged attack with a potency of 150. It’s only useful for pulling mobs from a distance.

Burst Strike – a single target attack with a potency of 500. Using it consumes a cartridge.

Fated Circle – an AoE attack with a potency of 320. It consumes a powder cartridge.

Sonic Break – a single target weaponskill that has an additional cooldown of 60 seconds. It has initial damage with a potency of 300, but it also inflicts a DoT effect that lasts 30 seconds and hits with a potency of 90 per tick.

Gnashing Fang – a single target attack with a potency of 450. It costs 1 cartridge and opens the Continuation combo.

Savage Claw – a single target weaponskill with a potency of 550. It can only be used after Gnashing Claw.

Wicked Talon – the last weaponskill in the Continuation combo. It has a potency of 650.

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Gunbreaker Offensive Abilities

No Mercy – it increases your damage dealt by 20% for 20 seconds. It has a one-minute cooldown. You should always make sure to fit the Continuation combo within its duration.

Danger Zone/Blasting Zone – a powerful single target attack with a potency of 350/800. It has a 30 seconds cooldown. Try to use it as often as possible, but also make sure to amplify its damage with your own or party buffs whenever you can.

Rough Divide – allows you to dash towards your target and deal with 200 potency damage. You can hold up to two charges of this ability. It has a 30 seconds cooldown.

Bow Shock – an AoE attack that deals damage with a potency of 200 and inflicts damage over time to every target hit. This effect lasts 15 seconds and has a tick potency of 90. Bow Shock has a one-minute cooldown.

Continuation – the unique part of Gunbreaker’s kit. This ability can only be used after Gnashing Fang, Savage Claw, and Wicked Talon. Furthermore, it has a slightly different effect after each one of these skills.

Jugular Rip – a single target attack with a potency 260. It’s the Continuation effect when it’s used after Gnashing Fang.

Abdomen Tear – a single target ability with a potency of 280. It’s performed when you use Continuation after Savage Claw.

Eye Gouge – a single target oGCD with a potency of 300. You can use it by pressing Continuation after Wicked Talon.

Bloodfest – use this ability on an opponent to get two powder cartridges instantly. It has a 90 seconds cooldown.

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Defensive Gunbreaker Abilities

Royal Guard – a toggle ability that remarkably increases your enmity generation. Use it when you’re playing as the main tank.

Camouflage – a 20 seconds buff that increases your parry rate by 50% and decreases the damage taken by 10%. It has a 90 seconds recast timer.

Nebula – decreases your damage taken by 30% for 15 seconds. It has two minutes of cooldown. It’s your best tool against tankbusters.

Aurora – healing over time ability that has an 18 seconds duration and a tick potency of 200. Aurora has a one-minute cooldown. This ability can be used on party members too.

Superbolide – reduces your HP to 1, but makes you invulnerable to almost all attacks for 8 seconds. It has a five minutes cooldown. You should only use it when you’re at a real risk of dying. Casting this ability when you’re close to full HP is always a mistake.

Heart of Light – a 15 seconds buff that affects you and your nearby party members. It decreases the magic damage that you’ll take by 10%. Heart of Light has a 90 seconds recast timer.

Heart of Stone – a 7 seconds buff that decreases damage taken by 15%. It can also be used on a party member. If you’re under the effect of Brutal Shell shield while casting Heart of Stone on a teammate, it will grant them the barrier too. That being said, you’re going to use it on yourself mostly. It has a short cooldown of 25 seconds.

Playstyle and Tips

As we already mentioned, Gunbreaker is probably the most sophisticated tank in Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. While it has a powerful and versatile kit, some of its parts are somewhat difficult to use. For instance, the constant healing and shielding from Brutal Shell and the HP regeneration provided by Aurora are beneficial for keeping yourself at high HP and giving your healers some room to breathe. However, they’re not as straightforward as the powerful instant shield from Dark Knight’s The Blackest Night or the swift healing from Paladin’s Clemency.

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Gunbreaker can’t just react to the damage they already received. They have to be prepared for incoming hits and always mitigate the most dangerous hits. At the same time, you’ll have to keep up with a quite challenging and fast-paced offensive rotation. That’s why we wouldn’t recommend Gunbreaker as the first FFXIV tank to learn the role. The playstyle is incredibly fun and satisfying, but the job doesn’t forgive mistakes as easily as Dark Knight. Moreover, Gunbreaker’s only barrier is attached to their standard weaponskill combo – you can’t proc it whenever you want. You’re not even going to use that sequence when you go into the highest damage Continuation combo. Finally, the Brutal Shell shield isn’t even that strong in the first place.

Furthermore, double weaving is required to unleash all the damage potential that Gunbreaker can provide. You need quick fingers and low latency to play the job to its limits. It’s quite rare for tanks since they’re considered the most straightforward role to play in terms of pure mechanical prowess (while often requiring a lot of game knowledge). To excel at playing Gunbreaker, you’re going to need both.

Rotations and cooldowns

Since every FFXIV job has to play like a DPS and optimizing your damage output is a huge deal in the endgame content, you should always understand which parts of your kit can give you the most damage and what can you do to amplify their numbers even further. All the most critical offensive tools in Gunbreaker’s kit have either 30 or 60 seconds cooldown. This should allow you to combo them together effortlessly.

The one-minute cooldowns are the 20% damage buff in No Mercy and two damage over time attacks – Sonic Break and Bow Shock. Meanwhile, every 30 seconds, you’re going to have access to the 800 potency oGCD in Blasting Zone as well as Gnashing Fang and the whole Continuation combo. No Mercy is an exceptionally potent buff that makes it the focal point of your rotation. All the attacks that we described in this paragraph should be squeezed into every duration of No Mercy. That being said, it’s not as difficult as you might think – this buff lasts 20 seconds with a one-minute cooldown. You can effectively have it up for a third of the time.

Additionally, you have a single great 90 seconds cooldown called Bloodfest. It allows you to get two cartridges instantly. You’re going to use it during the opener, but due to the longer recast timer, it won’t be up for every cast of No Mercy.

As for the cartridge usage, it’s relatively straightforward. During single target fights, you want the possibility of using the Continuation combo every 30 seconds. Any excessive cartridges can go into Burst Strike. During AoE fights, you might not want to use Continuation at all – every cartridge can be used on Fated Circle.

Overall, the AoE rotation is straightforward. It’s based on three weaponskills.

Demon Slice->Demon Slaughter->Fated Circle    

Beyond that, you want to make use of No Mercy and weave in some oGCDs, like Bow Shock, Fated Circle, and Sonic Break.

The single target rotation is slightly more complicated since it has two phases. There’s the standard weaponskill combo and the Continuation combo. As we mentioned earlier, you also have to dump extra cartridges into uses of Burst Strike. Unfortunately, it’s a GCD weaponskill – so it will delay other parts of your rotation. This part is one of the most challenging aspects of optimizing Gunbreaker’s DPS, and it will require some field practice.

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Single target opener

Openers are designed to put all your strongest damage abilities on cooldown, while also synergizing with potential raid buff windows that your team may provide. We have already talked about all the tools in Gunbreaker’s kit - now, let’s see how they come together in the opener.

Lightning Shot->Keen Edge->Brutal Shell->(Potion)->Solid Barrel->Keen Edge->(No Mercy)->Gnashing Fang->(Bloodfest + Jugular Rip)->Sonic Break->(Bow Shock + Blasting Zone)->Savage Claw->(Rough Divide + Abdomen Tear)->Wicked Talon->(Rough Divide + Eye Gouge)->Brutal Shell->Burst Strike->Burst Strike->Solid Barrel->Burst Strike->Keen Edge…

The recommended potion is Tincture of Strength. If you feel like you might need a gap closer, you can save one stack of Rough Divide instead of using it solely for damage, as we showed here. Beyond that, we would strongly suggest sticking with this sequence. If you’re the main tank, you should do all these things with Royal Guard active, since it generates additional enmity. If you’re the secondary tank (also called off-tank), you should turn it off and go with identical rotation, just without the opening Lightning Shot.

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Gunbreaker is a great and complex tank job. It can be quite challenging for your mechanics, split-second decision making, and even the Internet connection. It has a satisfying playstyle that requires a lot of presence of mind some resource management. While the defensive parts of this job’s kit are not the easiest to master, they’re more than enough to survive the most challenging encounters, when used correctly. At the same time, a proficient Gunbreaker can outdamage every other tank in the game.

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The active and action-packed play style makes this job really engaging, especially when compared to other characters in the same role. Gunbreakers don’t make tanking easy. They make it stylish and fun!

If you’re looking for some more articles and guides regarding Final Fantasy XIV or other popular online titles, make sure to browse our blog. We post plenty of content about all the top MMORPGs and more!   

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