FFXIV Reaper guide – how to play Reaper

Here's everything we know about the melee DPS job, where to unlock Reaper in FFXIV, and how to use the Reaper's abilities and stacks

A Reaper in FFXIV wielding a scythe against a backdrop of purple clouds

The second new job in the FFXIV Endwalker expansion is the Reaper class. This sinister, scythe wielding character can summon a demon avatar from the Void to aid in battle and arrived alongside the FFXIV Sage job.

As well as these two jobs, Endwalker added a bunch of new features to the game including raids, gear, systems, and new dungeons – as well as a male Viera as a new playable race, and a new tribe called Loporrits. There’s also new areas to explore, a lunar landscape, Mare Lamentorum, and a new training ground for the Warriors of Light called Labyrinthos.

If you’re keen to know more about the Reaper, though, expect a job that’s a lot darker than the Sage class and unlike current FFXIV classes. Using powers from the void, the Reaper deals substantial damage to foes at melee range. Here’s how to unlock the Reaper job in FFXIV, and how to use the Reaper’s skills and abilities effectively in order to maximise your impact in battle.

how to unlock ffxiv reaper

To unlock the Reaper job, you must first own Endwalker and have at least one Discipline of War or Magic at level 70. To start your journey as a Reaper, go to the Steps of Nald in Ul’dah (X: 12.8 Y: 8.6) and speak to the NPC ‘Flustered Attendant’ to get the quest The Killer Instinct.

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FFXIV Reaper gameplay

The Reaper is a melee DPS job, like the monk, dragoon, ninja, and samurai. This style of fighting places you in the midst of danger, but players are also able to deal massive damage as a result. With simple positionals, and a broad kit of skills, Reapers are very fun to play.

Your role as a Reaper is simple: hit the enemies with your weaker attacks so you can charge stronger ones. It’s important to pay attention to your positioning during fights to enable you to stay in close range.

If you’ve played a melee job before, you’ll know about combos already – but in case you’re unfamiliar, here’s how they work. While you can press any combat skill and damage the enemy, your skills are most effective when used in a particular order.

Reaper’s basic single target combo consists of of Slice, Waxing Slice, and Infernal Slice. If you are dealing with a group of three or more enemies, you might prefer to use your area-of-effect combo, which is Spinning Scythe followed by Nightmare Scythe. Using these skills maximises your damage output while also increasing your Soul Gauge.

The FFXIV Reaper standing in a circle of purple magic

FFXIV Reaper Soul Gauge

The Soul Gauge is one of the Reaper’s main mechanics. It’s filled by using skills or killing enemies that are under a specific effect. Both the above combos grant you souls to fill the bar; additionally, skills like Shadow of Death or Whorl of Death afflict enemies with Death’s Design. This effect increases the damage you deal to marked enemies, and adds to your Soul Gauge if they are killed before the effect expires. For this reason, it’s important to always keep Death’s Design up. Since Shadow of Death/Whorl of Death doesn’t break your combo, you should use them whenever Death’s Design is about to end, regardless of where you are in your combo.

Now that you know how to get souls, here’s how to use them. The first two skills that require souls are Blood Stalk and Grim Swathe. The former is a single target skill while the latter is a multitarget skill, and they cost 50 souls each. They also both grant one stack of Soul Reaver, which unlocks another sequence of skills. At level 76, you unlock the Gluttony skill, which deals substantial damage to a single target and over an area. Crucially, Gluttony grants two stacks of Soul Reaver for the same cost of 50 souls, making it a critical skill later on.

The FFXIV Reaper brandishing a scythe on a rooftop, surrounded by red and black energy

FFXIV Reaper Soul Reaver stacks

The Soul Reaver stacks you accumulate can be used to execute an even stronger combo. Once you have gained Soul Reaver stacks, the skills Gibbet, Gallows, and Guillotine become available. Each skill costs one Soul Reaver stack; Guillotine is a multi-target attack without a follow-up, and Gibbet and Gallows form a small combo.

Importantly, Gibbet and Gallows are more effective when used on an enemy from a particular angle – this is called a positional attack. For Gibbet, you must aim for the enemies’ sides, and for Gallows, aim for their back.

The FFXIV Reaper's avatar, a shrouded figure with an eyeless skull-like head

FFXIV Reaper Shroud Gauge

Learning Shroud Gauge at level 80 adds a Shroud Gauge to your Soul Gauge that shows the number of Shrouds you have accumulated. Shrouds are acquired by using Gibbet, Gallows, and Guillotine, and are required to use the Enshroud skill.

While Enshroud is active, your avatar takes over your body for 30 seconds, granting you five stacks of Lemure Shroud. Lemure Shroud is used to activate powerful skills like Communio and Void Reaping.

When you learn Shroud Gauge, you also acquire a Death Gauge which allows you to keep track of your Enshroud duration and your Lemure Shroud stacks. After learning Enhanced Shroud, you also accumulate Void Shroud stacks upon using Lemure Shroud stacks, which are used for skills like Lemure’s Slice.

As you master the Reaper’s basic skills, you will gradually be able to incorporate additional abilities into your rotation. The Reaper’s kit also contains damage buffs like Arcane Circle and an escape skill, Hell’s Ingress, which can teleport you far from the danger when it is necessary.

That’s everything you need to know to cut down foes as a Reaper – for extra style points, here’s how to obtain every FFXIV mount.