Dark Knight Tank Frequently Asked Questions — Shadowbringers 5.5

Last updated on Nov 27, 2021 at 17:30 by A Pile of Cats 1 comment

On this page, we go over some of the most frequently asked questions regarding Dark Knight and playing it in Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers (Patch 5.5). As more questions are discovered, we will add answers to them on this page.


Dark Knight FAQs

This page will answer some of the most common questions regarding Dark Knight.


Why can I not fit 5 GCDs under Blood Weapon?

There are three common causes for this. In order, they are: bad timing, wrong GCD speed, and high ping.

  1. Blood Weapon Icon Blood Weapon needs to be pressed when your next GCD is almost available. Ideally, the animation lock from the Blood Weapon cast (0.6~0.7 seconds, depending on ping) leads right into the animation lock of the following GCD. If your skill icons are clock faces, this means pressing your buff when the rolling timer is at about 7:30 or 8 o'clock to waste as little time as possible.
  2. Dark Knight works with a variety of different GCD speeds, but always needs at least a little bit of Skill Speed. Any GCD slower than about 2.43 seconds becomes very inconsistent or impossible to get 5-GCD buff windows with.
  3. If you are doing everything else right but still cannot reliably land all your GCDs under Blood Weapon, it is probably a ping issue. Ping affects the length of your animation locks, which in turn affects how quickly you can start rolling your GCD after pressing an oGCD. If this is an issue for you, the only in-game remedy is to run a faster GCD.

Is it true that Blood Weapon only lasts 9.9 seconds?

Almost. Blood Weapon is not unique in the fact that it lasts one server tick (1/24th of a second) shorter than its listed duration. However, it does sometimes activate one tick later than that, meaning its true duration is around 9.92-9.96 seconds. This can also cause the first GCD, rather than the last, to miss the buff's active duration if you queue up your next GCD during Blood Weapon's cast time and have good ping.


Do I need to use Blood Weapon and Delirium together?

Not necessarily. While both skills are usually used at the start of a burst window, they do not have any special interactions in single-target situations. Against multiple targets, however, you can use Delirium to avoid the 2.50-second recast timers on your Stalwart Soul Icon Stalwart Soul combo GCDs and achieve 5-hit Blood Weapon windows.


How does Living Shadow work? Does it snapshot buffs?

Living Shadow Icon Living Shadow summons a shadow clone that will attack seven times over its duration. After its startup animation, which takes approximately seven seconds, it will use Abyssal Drain Icon Abyssal Drain, Plunge Icon Plunge, Quietus Icon Quietus, Edge of Shadow Icon Edge of Shadow, Flood of Shadow Icon Flood of Shadow, Bloodspiller Icon Bloodspiller, and Carve and Spit Icon Carve and Spit in that order.

If Shadowbringer Icon Shadowbringer has been learned, the clone will use it in place of Flood of Shadow. Living Shadow prioritizes the first target that the user hits after its summoning animation is complete, and if there are no enemies in range when it tries to attack, it will use Abyssal Drain followed by Plunge again before resuming its rotation. The actions used by Living Shadow will deal physical or magic damage to a single target or in an AoE, according to how the actual skills work, but all actions except Shadowbringer have the same potency of 270, or 300 if the Enhanced Living Shadow Icon Enhanced Living Shadow trait has been acquired.

Shadowbringer instead deals 450 potency to the primary target and 337.5 potency to all other targets hit. While several factors affect the actual damage dealt by the simulacrum, they average out to very close to the listed potency. Living Shadow is affected by all buffs except Dragoon's Dragon Sight Icon Dragon Sight and your own Darkside, and checks on each attack rather than snapshotting. It is also unaffected by any Damage Down or Weakness debuffs on the user.


Does Salted Earth snapshot?

Salted Earth snapshots the user's buffs on application but checks the target's debuffs on each tick.


Why do the BiS sets sometimes deviate from the stat priority?

Stat tiers. The exact function of Determination, for example, is to increase your damage by 0.1% every 13 or 14 points. Direct Hit, meanwhile, increases your chance of landing a Direct Hit by 0.1% every 3 or 4 points. A big lump of Direct Hit is always better than a big lump of Determination at the values we work with, but if values line up such that a single Materia meld can add three tiers of Determination or ten tiers of Direct Hit, it is often better to take that one Determintion meld. This applies to gear as well as food.



  • 27 Nov. 2021: Guide added.
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