Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age is remastering done right. The lukewarm reception the original title received – partly thanks to an awkward release date, partly due to fans not being ready to accept a dramatic change to Final Fantasy‘s combat – seems like a long-forgotten memory at this point, as fans rediscover the things that made Final Fantasy 12 a good game.

It isn’t just the shine off the new graphical upgrades that has made people rethink their stance on Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age, however. Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age‘s improved job system has been a talking point ever since it was first revealed during the buildup to the game’s launch, and in practice, it’s even more exciting. An understated strength of Final Fantasy 12 was its Gambit System and malleable combat, something that initially turned fans off since it was a departure from JRPG turn-based combat but has since become something of a norm in the genre.

While the original job system was already deep, the ability to give characters two jobs at once makes it infinitely more customizable. Now, fans will be able to approach battles in a meticulous way, crafted perfectly to their needs, and the experience is much more enjoyable as a result. Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age is a big upgrade on many key game features, but it can be a little confusing as well – which is why we’ve put together a guide that shows off some of the builds we’ve had early success with in-game. Keep in mind that these aren’t statistically proven to be the absolute best job combinations, but they’ve been working extremely well in practice, which is enough to prove they’re strong choices for those looking for a balanced, honed party configuration that can handle the many challenges Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age throws in its way.

final fantasy 12 the zodiac age judge cutscene

Why Some Job Combinations Are Better

Despite part of the appeal of Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age being the many paths players can take to reach the same goal, there are always going to be better ways of doing it. The best job combinations do a number of things: they offset the weaknesses of each other, ensuring a character can both survive most forms of combat while also contributing, while they also make sense in the layout of a fight. Two high-damage jobs are great, but they can make a character something of a glass cannon, and likewise seem pretty useless in boss fights that have invulnerable phases or status ailments that can completely hinder a party’s progress. For that reason, we’ve narrowed it down to our favorite combinations for each major role – but mileage will vary, and these should be seen as blueprints and examples that show the kinds of synergies that players should look for when customizing their own jobs, too.

Best Physical DPS Job Combination – Bushi & Foebreaker

We’ll go on record as saying this likely won’t be the actual highest amount of DPS capable of a purely physical class combination, but it’s not just about the damage – it’s also about survival and usefulness, which this class combination has in spades. Players keep access to the katana, which is an incredible damage-dealing weapon in Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age already, but they also get ranged back-up weapons in the form of bombs that can help navigate fights that require awkward positioning.

On top of that, Bushi & Foebreaker combinations also get access to heavy armor, making this class combo a great tanking choice while still providing the party with a sizeable amount of DPS. These qualities, combined with the fact that this job combination also gives players access to some debilitating skills to weaken tough enemies, has made it the best physical DPS job we’ve come across thus far.

Best Support Job Combination – Uhlan & Time Battlemage

It’s odd to suggest that a spear-wielding class akin to Final Fantasy‘s classic Dragoon archetype is better as support, but this combination gives players flexibility that doesn’t really exist elsewhere. The Uhlan has the ability to sacrifice themselves and the rest of their HP to resurrect a KO’d party member at full health, making for a very strong desperation play when the party needs just a bit more damage to get through a fight. The Time Battlemage has access to a number of powers that speed up allies and slow down foes, meaning that this combination has both a great ability to control the battlefield while also possessing some last ditch efforts to save a fight going badly.

Beyond all this, however, the thing that pushes this job combination ahead of other support options is the fact that it can still deal a lot of damage when it needs to, meaning fights that need less support and just a lot of damage dealt quickly won’t mitigate the contribution of the Uhlan & Time Battlemage.

final fantasy 12 the zodiac age tiamat fight

Best Healer Job Combination – White Mage & Time Battlemage

For the second category in a row, the Time Battlemage features as one of the most powerful classes in conjunction with another. The Time Battlemage really does offer flexibility that is basically unparalleled in Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age‘s combat, and its ability to come up with huge buffs or debuffs makes it an easy choice for healing. We don’t think there’s much consideration for other classes to pair it with, though – virtually all of the best healer combos involve the White Mage, thanks to its ability to access the most powerful healing magic in the game.

While this job combination does have its weaknesses – namely, a complete inability to contribute meaningfully to DPS during battle – it more than makes up for it in its ability to keep other key party members alive and well. There aren’t many battles where having a dedicated healer is a detriment anyways, and even in those, it will likely just take a little longer while offering players much safer strategies heading into boss fights.

Best Magic DPS Job Combination – Black Mage & Red Battlemage

There really isn’t much of a consideration here – those even slightly familiar with Final Fantasy 12 will remember just how strong each of these magic-based classes were individually, and they simply get better when thrown together. These are the two major offensive magic users in the entire game, and combining them creates a magician with a spell for every situation and the explosive damage potential to swing fights in seconds.

Players who combine these two roles will get the best gear for magic DPS while also gaining access to Ardor, which is the most powerful elemental spell in the game and is a huge draw to playing a magic character in the first place. Since Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age really is about getting access to the best equipment as soon as possible, this combination is a no-brainer for those looking to outfit their magic user with both the strongest gear and the spells to take advantage of the stat bonuses.

Those are our picks for the strongest class combinations available in Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age, but there’s likely a lot more exploring to be done with the job system before that can be proven for certain. Still, even if new breakthroughs are made, these class combinations are a surefire bet to make the game much more manageable in its mid-to-late stages, and that should be enough for any fan to get through the beautiful story of Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age comfortably.

Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age is available now for PS4.