Part 96: The FFXII Camoes: Dancer, Sky Pirate, AgentI Still Haven't Played This Game: The FFXII Cameos (Job Roundup #19)
Of the several unique recruits in FFTA2, three are particularly special: Penelo, Vaan and Al-Cid take a break from sky piracy to lend you their powers on the battlefields of Ivalice. In this, the final job roundup, we'll take a look at their unique jobs -- Dancer, Sky Pirate and Agent -- to see just what they're bringing to the table.
Penelo's Unique Class
Recruited after completing the story quest "Pirate Problems"
- Weapons: Bladed Weapons, Rods, Staves, Poles
- Armor: Light Armor
Growths: Good magick, OK speed, bad physical.
Dancer reminds me a lot of Green Mage or Bard, but with different status effects. Instead of things like Sleep or Oil, Dancers inflict conditions like Slow, Attack Down and Magick Down. While they have no buffs, they can steal HP with Jitterbug, use Mincing Minuet for ranged damage and the double-strike Blade Dance for physical melee.
Of the three unique FFXII classes, Dancer is easily my favorite. It's not amazing or anything, it's no Assassin or Summoner, but those abilities can be really useful. It works best as a support class, either secondary to White Mage or Green Mage (debuffing the enemy while keeping your team up) or with Assassin, where Blade Dance can really shine. That said, it works better in long battles, where Attack Down and Magick Down can really have an effect. Ultimately, I'd say Dancer is a skippable job, but if you want to use Penelo then you might as well make her a Dancer.
Vaan's Unique Class
Recruited after completing the second part of "Pirate Problems"
- Weapons: Swords, Sabers, Blades
- Armor: Robes, Light Armor, Shields
Growths: As average as Heritor, but worse.
Sky Pirate, appropriately enough, is a better form of Thief. Salvage disarms traps and gives you loot, Swipe steals gil, Trophy Hunt is a weak attack that gives Level 4 loot if it's the finishing blow, and Steal does exactly what you think it does. Even better, Life of Crime deals damage based on the number of successful steals. That's not successful steals in this battle, but rather in all battles since the beginning of the game. He also gets Flee, a self-targeted version of Green Mage's Leap.
If you need to steal things, Vaan is the way to go. Pair him with any of the several classes that can inflict Stop or Sleep and just let him go crazy. Sky Pirate has a place as a secondary ability set, in case you want to Steal things or use abilities like Shadow Stalk (bypass R-Abilities) or Life of Crime. Otherwise, Vaan is just another hume.
Unless "Life of Crime" describes your adventures across Ivalice, of course. Then he's perfect.
Al-Cid's Unique Class
Recruited after completing the side quest "A Dashing Duel" and completing the
- Weapons: Guns
- Armor: Light Armor
Growths: Great physical, OK magical, speed's alright I guess.
When we recruited Al-Cid, I called him the worst recruit in the game. Now that I've actually used him a bit, I'd like to downgrade that to the worst recruit in the game on paper. He's locked into an unspectacular job, but his massive range, quite nice damage and useful utility abilities make up for that.
But let's talk about Agent. It's basically Chauvinism: The Job. Escort is Paladin's Cover, except it only works for female units. Enchant charms an enemy, but can be used on a female ally to raise her Attack. Fawn grants Astra and Regen to a female ally. Flourish deals more damage for every female that's in the party. He also gets Succor, which is basically First Aid, and Impassion, which raises the target's critical hit rate and makes them Berserk. Flavorful, yet useless. Reckless Abandon is his best attacking ability, but it's just a normal attack with a chance to reduce the target's Speed. Finally, there's the really quite useful Interrogate, which reveals all the traps on the map. Unlike the Ranger's Awareness, it targets a specific enemy, revealing the target's loot tables. This is better than it sounds: one popular law forbids abilities that target all units, making Awareness illegal.
Al-Cid's got some neat stuff, though only like 2 skills are generally useful unless you're running an all-Viera-and-Gria clan. Really, the worst part is not being able to switch him to anything else. Also, he has no P- or R-Abilities, which is a bit of a massive hole. Basically, Al-Cid is rarely my first choice, but he has enough positives to be useful if you can't decide on a sixth slot.