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Final Fantasy 12: Best Jobs for each character, how to build the best party and the Zodiac License Board explained

As you may already know, this Final Fantasy 12 Zodiac Age remaster is based on the Japanese “International Zodiac Job System” version, which differs from the original release in a few key areas.

Most notable, of course, is the overhaul of the Licenses system. Characters now have a choice of permanant class, known as the Zodiac Jobs system, and within those Jobs a License Board is available which holds various upgrades, including new Gambits for your character.

As well as all that, we’ll also be taking you through the best Jobs for each character – although it’s a lot less important than you think.

On this page:

It’s a lot to digest at first, so we’ll be explaining all you need to know on that here on this page. For more Final Fantasy 12 help though, be sure to take a look at our Final Fantasy 12 The Zodiac Age guide and walkthrough, too.

Zodiac Jobs and the License Board explained – which class should you pick in Final Fantasy 12?

Once the Zodiac Jobs and Licence system is unlocked in-game, every time a new person joins your party you’ll be able to assign them a Job.

Final Fantasy 12 gives you the opportunity to take a look at what’s on each board before deciding, but note that once you’ve assigned one you’re stuck with it permanently – unless you’re playing on Switch and Xbox One – so in the early stages of the game you may want to hold off until you’ve settled on a playstyle.

The twelve Jobs, corresponding to the twelve Zodiac signs.

When a new member joins your party they’ll come with armour and weapons that suggest their intended “default” role – Basch has a sword, Fran has a bow, etc. – but you’re free to ignore that and give them something else to do.

That being said, it’s advisable to not stray too far from their intended job – while you can make Basch a White Mage, he has more base HP, so is better suited to a melee character.

That said, when it comes time to add a second license (after defeating Belias to get your first Esper), an argument can be made for assigning people to the “wrong” class as a way of evening out the party and stopping you from relying too heavily one one character: melee-based jobs have more HP bonuses available on their boards which you can use to toughen up your Mages, and adding some magic skills to a melee fighter means they’ll still be of some use in situations where physical combat isn’t an option. More on that just below.

Theoretically, there are over five trillion combinations available to you when building your party of characters and their various Zodiac Jobs, so we’re obviously not going to list them all, but here’s a brief overview of each type:

Job Attack Type Armour Weapons Best Uses Suggested Characters
Archer Ranged Light Bows Tackling airborne enemies. Fran
Black Mage Magic Mystic Staffs Enemies with elemental weaknesses. Ashe
Bushi Melee Mystic Katanas Close-quarters, fast attacks against slow enemies or weak physical defences. Vaan
Shikari Melee Medium Daggers
Ninja Swords
Close-quarters, alternative to a tank with high evasion. Vaan
White Mage Magic Mystic Rods Healing and defensive magic, at least one is essential for you party. Ashe
Uhlan Melee Heavy Spears Tanking and heavy damage. Vaan
Machinist Ranged
Light Guns for Ranged
Measures for Melee
Flexibility, with a choice of melee or ranged. Note that weapon damage doesn’t scale with stats, but Measures do flat damage regardless of enemy defence stats. Fran
Red Battlemage Melee
Mystic Maces Can only cast low level spells, but useful as a spare support for your White Mage. Ashe
Knight Melee Heavy Swords
Good as a tank or DPS, and good choice for beginners due to survivability. Vaan
Monk Melee Light Poles High health and evasion means it can serve as a tank. Can fight unarmed. Vaan
Time Battlemage Ranged Heavy Crossbows Both support and damage-dealing spells useful for inflicting status effects and damage over time. Ashe
Foebreaker Melee Heavy Hammers
Excellent tanking and works as DPS against high-defence enemies. Vaan

The best Zodiac Jobs for each character in Final Fantasy 12

It’s a common question, but there are very few aspects which really affect a character’s performance when it comes to picking Jobs for each of them, so it’s not something to worry about with too much.

Instead, it’s more just a case of bearing one or two minor factors in mind, and then building them however you please. The community over on GameFAQs has made a decent job (pun half-intended) of suggesting the best options, but again there really are no hard and fast rules. Bearing all that in mind, here’s what to consider when picking jobs for your character:

  • Vaan – A general all-rounder, but highish HP takes him towards tankier Jobs like the Bushi, Shikari, Uhlan, Knight and Foebreaker.
  • Ashe – High Magic Power (MP), making her suited to the mage Jobs.
  • Penelo – like Ashe, high MP means a leaning towards mage suitability.
  • Basch – High combo speed points towards melee-based Jobs – think Bushi, Uhlan or Monk.
  • Balthier – As with Basch above, combo speed suggests a melee Job.
  • Fran – Slightly weaker stats suggests ranged Jobs like Archer or Machinist.

For more help with? Final Fantasy 12? Our Final Fantasy 12 The Zodiac Age guide, walkthrough, Switch and Xbox differences gives an overview of the game to get you started. Elsewhere, there’s our hidden Espers strategy and locations and Elite Hunts and Marks pages, how to get the best Zodiac Jobs for each character, advice on farming LP from Jellies and even how to get the Zodiac Spear.