FF14 Best Tanks In The Game (Ranked)

FFXIV Warrior
Be the tankiest tank in your party!

Where would we be without our damage sponges? On the floor, that’s where! Despite being in the frontlines, tanks are the unsung heroes in FF14. They control how fast an instance goes based on their pulls and are responsible for the rest of the party receiving very little damage. 

An effective tank and a not-so-effective tank is the difference between clearing an instance in record time or repeating Aurum Vale for the 5th time. 

There are four different tanks in FF14, each with their unique strengths and weaknesses. This ranked list will tell you which tanks are the best and briefly how to best play each one.


4. Dark Knight

Okay, that is one awesome relic weapon

Do you like carrying around a massive sword as the darkness envelops you? Or do you just really like Berserk? While it has one of the best storylines out of all classes, it’s much better as an Off-Tank rather than a Main Tank.

It’s not very self-sustainable compared to the other Tanks, though it comes with plenty of mitigations and buffs to make up for that. Dark Mind reduces damage by 20% for 10 seconds. 

It is the fastest personal mitigation cooldown out of the other Tank classes, standing at just 60 seconds compared to the 90-second Bulwark, Thrill of Battle, and Camouflage abilities of the other Tanks. Though, unlike the other cooldowns, Dark Mind only works on magic damage. 

The Blackest Night grants a barrier around the self or another player for 7 seconds, absorbing damage that is 25% of the player’s HP.

 If the barrier breaks, it grants DRK Dark Arts which gives them a free Edge of Shadow or Flood of Shadow; both abilities deal 460 potency damage and 160 potency AoE damage respectively.

A similar ability, sans the free Edge of Shadow and Flood of Shadow, is Oblation which mitigates damage by 10% to either the DRK or another player.

Because it lacks personal healing abilities, it makes for a weak Main Tank compared to the others despite the great mitigations. However, it's the best Off-Tank in the game and has an overall cool and dark aesthetic. 

Dark Knight Strengths

  • Has powerful mitigation abilities such as The Blackest Night and Oblation
  • Has the best magical damage mitigation with Dark Mind
  • Does a lot of damage, both AoE and single-target

Play this class if you like..

  • Great resource management
  • Highly effective damage output
  • Being a dark and gritty protagonist

Here are the ideal openers and Best-In-Slot (BIS) gear for Dark Knight.

Tank Score: 87/100


3. Gunbreaker

Can't decide between using a gun or a blade? Do I have the class for you!

The way it plays is akin to most DPS classes due to its speed; it can do lots of damage really fast and has short cooldowns. However, we’re here to talk about its Tanking abilities.

It is the most versatile Tank in the game, being both a valuable Main Tank and Off-Tank. If the GNB is an Off-Tank, it only loses the advantage of using Camouflage effectively which increases the parry rate by 50% and mitigates damage by 10%.

Also, unlike Paladin and Warrior, Heart of Corundum can be used for both the GNB and the Off-Tank rather than treated as separate tools. 

It reduces damage by 15% to the selected player, reduces another 15% by granting Clarity of Corundum, and grants Catharsis of Corundum; if the player’s HP falls below 50%, it restores their HP. It has a cure potency of 900, as well.

Aurora, another tool, grants Regen to the targeted player with a cure potency of 200 and lasts 18 seconds. Of course, we also need to address the elephant in the room–Superbolide. This makes the GNB practically invincible for 10 seconds. 

Please, please, use this one wisely for the Healer’s sanity. It also drops the Gunbreaker’s HP to merely 1 point no matter what the GNB’s starting HP is. If you’re about to die, anyhow, use it and hope the poor White Mage can use Benediction on you. 

Gunbreaker Strengths

  • It’s very versatile, allowing the player to both Main Tank and Off-Tank without losing much either way
  • Rotations are similar to DPS classes, making it a great transition class
  • It’s fast paced

Play this class if you like..

  • Speed-driven gameplay
  • Flexibility
  • Being a DPS with a much shorter queue time and better defense abilities

Here are the ideal openers and Best-In-Slot (BIS) gear for Gunbreaker.

Tank Score: 90/100


2. Paladin

Only the second best Healer Tank in the game

The holy PLD aims to protect its party members with its sword, shield, and might. One of its unique mitigations–Holy Sheltron–reduces damage taken by 15%, has a cure potency of 250, and gives two unique abilities–Knight’s Resolve and Knight’s Benediction.

Knight’s Resolve grants an additional 15% damage mitigation and Knight’s Benediction gradually restores HP. Activating Holy Sheltron cost 50 Oath Gauge. Their off-tank ability, Intervention, is similar and costs the same amount.

The key difference, though, is that the damage is reduced by 10% to another player instead of 15%. Another 10% is granted if abilities Rampart or Sentinel are active. The skill also activates Knight’s Resolve, giving another 10%. With a cure potency of 250 and Knight’s Benediction, this makes Intervention just as effective as Holy Sheltron. 

Unlike other Tanks, as mentioned before, the Paladin has a shield and is not afraid to use it. Its shield blocks 30% of attacks and mitigates 20% of all received damage. The mitigation can be increased to 100% via ability Bulwark; it lasts 10 seconds and has a 90-second cooldown.

Thanks to Requiescat, they can unleash their Confiteor combo. This four-step combo has a cure potency of 400 for each ability, totalling a massive 1,600 cure potency for the Paladin.

Additionally, Royal Authority grants Divine Might, giving them an instacast of Holy Spirit which grants 450 cure potency. 

Paladin Strengths

  • Some of the best raid buffs a Tank could have, such as Divine Veil (absorbs 10% damage for all adjacent party members) and Passage of Arms (increases block rate by 100% and all party members in a cone behind the PLD will take only 85% of the damage)
  • Great run-saving tools such as Clemency (restore target HP by 1000) and Cover (takes all of the damage instead of the affected player)
  • Big heals

Play this class if you like..

  • Having access to some of the best mitigation abilities
  • Playing defensively
  • The flex of being the only class that has a cool shield

Here are the ideal openers and Best-In-Slot (BIS) gear for Paladin.

Tank Score: 94/100


1. Warrior

The bigger the axe, the more skulls you can crush!

WAR is perhaps the most played Tank class in FF14 and for good reason. It is known by the player base as the easiest-to-play Tank in the entire game. It comes with simple rotations, generous healing abilities, and is overall a very self-sufficient class.

Bloodwhetting gives WARs a very useful series of buffs. It reduces damage by 10%, restores HP per successful hit, has a cure potency of 400, and can create a barrier that is equivalent to 400 cure potency. WAR gets all that with just a 25-second cooldown. 

Nascent Flash–which shares a cooldown timer with Bloodwhetting–provides the same buffs, but to another party member instead–such as the Off-Tank. 

Thrill of Battle increases maximum HP by 20% and restores that very amount. Additionally, it also increases the WAR’s HP recovery by 20% if healing abilities are used on the WAR.

Equilibrium is, by far, the most powerful healing ability in the WARs arsenal. It gives the WAR …


A cure potency of 1,200. At this rate, the WAR can be its own Healer … And in some very specific cases, it is.

Warrior Strengths

  • High self-sufficiency 
  • Generous healing abilities
  • Ease of use

Play this class if you like..

  • A straightforward introduction to Tanking
  • Playing on the offense as it can deal some great damage
  • Main Tanking as this is the WAR’s default responsibility in all raids  … According to the playerbase, anyhow 

Here are the ideal openers and Best-In-Slot (BIS) gear for Warrior.

Tank Score: 98/100

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Just your run-of-the mill, vertically challenged Au'Ra obsessed with Greek mythos, philosophy, and technology.
Gamer Since: 1998
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: FFXIV, For the King, Monster Hunter Rise, Civilization VI
Top 3 Favorite Games:Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward, Sid Meier's Civilization V, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion

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