Once you reach level 50 in Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, there's plenty more still to do.
At this point in the game, your progression stops being about experience points and instead becomes about your item level. You'll notice that each piece of equipment you carry has its own level, and on your Character sheet your average item level is shown in the top right corner of your paper doll. Improving your equipment will improve this level, and many of the challenges later in the game require (or at least recommend) that you have a particular item level before you can take them on.
There are several ways to improve your equipment: looting equipment from dungeons, crafting it or buying it. In the latter case, you don't buy this equipment with normal currency; instead, you must exchange one of three special currencies called Allagan Tomestones with Rowena's coworkers in Mor Dhona. And this is where endgame dungeons come in: defeating bosses in endgame dungeons rewards you with various types of Allagan Tomestones, which you can then go on to use to purchase new equipment.
The three types of Allagan Tomestones are Allagan Tomestones of Philosophy, which can no longer be collected; Allagan Tomestones of Mythology, which are generally used to purchase equipment with an item level of 90; and Allagan Tomestones of Soldiery, which are generally used to purchase level 100 items. The only use for Allagan Tomestones of Philosophy as of patch 2.2 is to exchange them for Allagan Tomestones of Mythology, so if you happen to have any on hand be sure to visit Mor Dhona and cash them in.
So you probably want to get your hands on some Tomestones, then, right? Well, let's delve into the endgame dungeons, then; Team USG is here to hold your hand for the boss encounters.
The Wanderer's Palace
Required level: 50
Unlocked by: Sidequest "Trauma Queen" from Allene in Vesper Bay, Western Thanalan
Wanderer's Palace is a pretty straightforward dungeon run, and the easiest of the endgame challenges. There are a few things to watch out for, most notable the giant Tonberries who gradually work their way around the map in several areas, dealing heavy damage to anyone they spot. You can't defeat these, so your only option is to keep moving well ahead of them. For this reason, many well-geared groups prefer to pull several groups of monsters and engage them all at once; be sure the tank is well-armored and the healer is ready for some hard work if you're going to take this approach.
At several points in the dungeon, you'll come across ancient machinery. In order to get this moving -- usually to open a door -- you'll need to collect Lantern Oil from the small Tonberry enemies. Most groups tend to kill Tonberries first when they're fighting a group, because that way if the giant Tonberry shows up they can quickly grab the oil, grease up the gears and escape through the door.
Keeper of Halidom
The first boss is a goobbue-type enemy and as such you'll need to be careful of it sneezing on you. The tank should take the boss to the far side of the room and face it away from the rest of the party; everyone else, meanwhile, should spread out to avoid being sucked in by Keeper of Halidom's Inhale attack, which is usually followed by the poison-inflicting Goobbue's Grief.
When an area-effect circle appears on the floor, move out of the way immediately as it means Keeper of Halidom is going to sneeze on you with Moldy Phlegm. This deals damage and inflicts a debuff on you, so healers should be ready to deal with status effects as well as healing.
Aside from dodging the attacks, this is a pretty straightforward fight; before long, the boss will fall before your onslaught and you'll be rewarded with 10 Mythology Tomes for your trouble. Onward!
Two things to beware of when fighting this oversized pudding. Firstly, occasionally he will summon four smaller friends to assist, each of which has its own abilities. They don't have many HP, though, so DPS characters should quickly use their area effect skills and spells to destroy them as quickly as possible. The tank, meanwhile, should use Flash or Overpower to ensure that all the smaller Bavarois are collected together around their master.
Secondly, at various points in the fight, you'll see the message that the boss "fixes its eyes on a single target," at which point the target in question will get a crosshair appear over them. This crosshair means that an enemy is "aggro locked," meaning the tank won't be able to pull them off their target via normal means. Instead, the target must keep running away from the Giant Bavarois until the crosshairs disappear and the targeting indicator shows that it has returned its attention to the tank.
Successfully deal with these two abilities and the Giant Bavarois will be a goopy mess on the floor before you know it. You'll get 20 Myth Tomes for your bravery.
Time to take revenge on the Tonberries.
The tank should stay in melee range of the Tonberry King at all times, otherwise it will use the ability Scourge of Nym, which inflicts heavy damage as well as the movement-slowing debuff Heavy. The tank should simple concentrate on the King and ignore everything else going on as much as possible.
DPS characters, meanwhile, should deal with the small Tonberries that appear around the room. If left unchecked, they'll also use Scourge of Nym, but killing each one gives the King a stack of Rancor. Every so often, the Tonberry King will use Everybody's Grudge and deal damage based on how many stacks of Rancor it has, then lose those stacks. The exact number of stacks a tank can take before being one-shotted is largely determined by their gear, but if you want to be safe, stop killing small Tonberries until after Everybody's Grudge every time the King gets three stacks of Rancor.
Late in the fight, Tonberry Slashers will appear around the perimeter of the room and slowly advance. Do not, under any circumstances, get close to these monsters as they will kill you. At this point, the Tonberry King's HP will likely be very low, so simply focus your attention on him and perhaps finish with a Limit Break to clear the dungeon and be rewarded with 10 Soldiery Tomes.
Required level: 50
Unlocked by: Sidequest "Ghosts of Amdapor" from Nedrick Ironheart in Vesper Bay, Western Thanalan
Originally the hardest 4-player dungeon in the game, Amdapor Keep is significantly less of a challenge than it once was. It still has some tricky bosses, however, so be ready for them.
When you first meet this boss, all you'll see is a Lunatic Priest. Attack him, taking care to avoid his Void Fire ability, until he summons the Psycheflayer, at which point you should finish him off and then turn your attention to the main boss.
Psycheflayer is fairly straightforward to fight for the most part, until it starts summoning golems to help. Defeat the Stone and Marble Marionettes as quickly as possible when they show up, but ignore the Megalith Marionette. The latter has a giant circular area of effect attack called Plaincracker that will deal heavy damage to anyone caught in it. You can usually avoid it by hugging the wall furthest away from it. While taking care to deal with the Stone and Marble Marionettes and avoid Plaincracker, hit Psycheflayer as hard as you can and before long it will fall and you'll receive 10 Mythology Tomes.
This iconic Final Fantasy boss performs its moves in a strict pattern, so with careful movement you can avoid most of its attacks and take it down quickly.
The sequence of abilities Demon Wall uses is Liquefy down the middle of the room, Liquefy down the sides, Liquefy in the middle again, Liquefy down the sides again, then Repel, which is a powerful knockback that can send you falling off the platform if you're not facing the boss directly. To avoid these attacks, stand at the side of the platform for the first Liquefy, then in the middle for the second, back to the side for the third, back to the middle for the fourth and finally stack on top of the boss facing it directly to prepare for Repel -- standing on the triangular marker on its targeting indicator is a good guide.
After each use of Repel, Demon Wall will advance. After the second Repel, a dark pool will form at the back of the platform, so keep out of this. When the wasp-like Bloodlapper enemies show up, most parties will probably be able to safely ignore them and concentrate on killing the Demon Wall, though the tank should attempt to stun the Bloodlappers' Paralysis-inflicting Thunderstorm ability if possible.
Once Demon Wall is down, you'll receive another 20 Mythology Tomes for your trouble.
The final boss of Amdapor Keep will keep the party on its toes. The tank should pull it to the corner of the room behind one of the statues, while the rest of the party should keep back and attack it from the sides if possible to avoid its frontal and rear attacks.
The main thing to watch for during this fight is Anandaboga using Imminent Catastrophe. During this move, Anandaboga will move to the middle of the room and cast the ability, which will deal heavy damage to anyone in line of sight. Hide behind one of the statues in the room to break line of sight to survive this.
However, Imminent Catastrophe will awaken one of the statues. DPS characters should kill it as quickly as possible while avoiding its area-effect attacks, then return their attention to Anandaboga.
Later in the fight, Anadaboga will begin casting Plague Dance on random players. This attaches a purple beam to the player, and a few moments later summons a red orb to deal damage to all nearby players. The player afflicted with Plague Dance should move well away from the rest of the party to minimize damage and place the orbs well away from locations where characters are standing. The red orbs will, however, disappear the next time Anandaboga uses Imminent Catastrophe.
Successfully knock down Anandaboga and you'll get 10 Soldiery Tomes for your bravery.
Copperbell Mines (Hard)
Required level: 50
Unlocked by: Sidequest "Out of Sight, Out of Mine" from Hugubert in Mor Dhona. You must have completed the main scenario, also.
Your return to Copperbell Mines will see you taking a different route to your first visit, and taking on some very different bosses. Like Copperbell's first incarnation, however, several of these fights have special mechanics you need to pay close attention to.
While moving between the boss fights, be wary of enemies coming from the rear, as well as unavoidable damage from the Spriggans who are sitting in unreachable locations. You'll also encounter bomb-type enemies at several points -- as usual, make it a priority to defeat these before they explode, dealing heavy damage to everyone around them.
This fight unfolds on a narrow platform that you'll have to advance along as the fight progresses.
First up, kill all the Mining Dross as quickly as possible, then turn your attention to the boss. Every 45-60 seconds, he'll cast Darkfire, which will set part of the platform alight and also summon a Flambeau bomb-type enemy. You must kill the Flambeau as quickly as possible, because it will either self-destruct and kill everyone or blow up when it reaches the fire and kill everyone. Flambeaus come from the far end of the platform, so be sure your camera is positioned in such a way that you can see them and quickly switch targets when they show up.
Towards the end of the platform, the Mastermind will summon some friends to help. Quickly burn these down and return your attention to the boss and he'll be down after a bit more of a pummelling. You'll receive 20 Myth Tomes as your reward.
This fight is similar to the slime fight in the original Copperbell Mines in that you can't inflict damage to the boss normally. Instead, one player must use the Improved Blasting Device to spawn a Waymaker bomb, and this must be used to deal damage to Gogmagolem. You can pick up the bomb and move it, so be sure it's in Gogmagolem's path when it's about to explode. DPS characters shouldn't sit around twiddling their thumbs, however; they should instead deal with the Kindling Sprites that regularly appear around the outside of the room.
Gogmagolem's movement will become increasingly erratic as the fight progresses, but keep an eye on the pattern and you should be able to leave a bomb in his path without too much difficulty.
When Gogmagolem is destroyed, its "pilot" Biggy will jump out. Kill him quickly before any of the big bombs go off, and you'll score yourself 30 Myth Tomes as a reward.
Healers, be on alert in this fight as Ouranos has a very difficult-to-avoid move called Power Attack that inflicts Heavy on whoever it hits. Be ready to clear this off your comrades (or yourself) if the attack connects.
The main mechanic to be aware of in this fight is the Abyss Worm that circles the sandy arena. Don't get in its way, as it will inflict damage, though Ouranos can be safely tanked in the center of the arena. Every so often, the worm will begin "searching for fodder," at which point one player should grab one of the Crystallized Rocks from around the perimeter of the room and place it on the sand, then step back quickly. The Abyss Worm will devour the rock at be temporarily placated; if you don't do this, it will use Bottomless Desert to deal heavy damage and suck everyone into the middle of the room. You do not want that to happen.
Throughout the fight, a number of aggro-locked enemies will show up. Defeat these as quickly as possible, particularly if they are going after the person on "feeding duty" for the worm. Stay on top of things and this isn't a difficult fight; successfully beat it to clear the dungeon and be rewarded with 20 Soldiery Tomes.
Haukke Manor (Hard)
Required level: 50
Unlocked by: Sidequest "Maniac Manor" from Laurine in Mor Dhona. You must have also finished the main scenario.
Like Copperbell before it, your second visit to Haukke is markedly different to the first. You'll take a new route, face new bosses and generally have a bit of a harder time making your way through. Never fear, though, because Team USG is here.
This is a reasonably straightforward fight so long as your DPS rate is up to scratch. Concentrate on the Manor Jester for the most part, taking care to avoid the icy patches on the ground that it summons. As the fight progresses, the Jester will summon numerous additional monsters to make your life miserable. Burn these down quickly, but when the larger skeleton shows up towards the end of the fight, quickly finish off the Jester with a Limit Break if at all possible. You'll get 20 Myth Tomes for winning.
This fight is all about movement. The tank should face Ash away from the rest of the party, and everyone else should position themselves around the middle of the room. This way, when the blue lighting effects appear on the floor, you'll be able to quickly move away to a safe zone to avoid taking damage and being afflicted with Silence.
Throughout the fight, Ash will also summon spinning blades that will inflict Heavy, so take care to stay well away from these.
At around 25% HP, additional monsters will start to show up through void portals. Stay away from the portals as much as possible and defeat the adds quickly before returning your attention to Ash. Stay calm, don't panic and you'll be victorious before long, making you 30 Myth Tomes richer.
In this fight, the boss will occasionally "eat" its companions and be rewarded with buffs. It will also cast an unavoidable attack called Blood Rain, with the damage it inflicts depending on the remaining health of the monster that was eaten. Thus, in situations where there are two additional monsters as well as the boss, burn the first down until it's almost dead but don't kill it; then go to town on the other. That way, if Halicarnassus does end up eating one of the monsters, all being well it will be the one that is already almost dead.
Assuming you survive all three sets of additional monsters -- there's a single Sentry, followed by two Handmaidens, followed by Lady Amandine from the original Haukke Manor (you may want to Limit Break her as she's significantly tougher than the rest) -- the tank should then drag Halicarnassus into the middle of the room, and the rest of the party should each take a corner and spread out. At around 15% HP, Halicarnassus will begin casting an unblockable charm spell on the entire party, which will cause everyone to slowly walk towards her. While charmed, one player will be hit with Void Fire IV along with anyone in the nearby vicinity, so staying spread out helps make the healer's life a little easier once the charm effect fades.
Stay on top of this and it won't be long before Halicarnassus falls and Haukke Manor is peaceful once again... probably. Either way, you'll be better off by 20 Soldiery Tomes when you're done.
Required level: 50
Unlocked by: Sidequest "Sirius Business" from Diamanda in Aleport, Western La Noscea.
Pharos Sirius was a notoriously difficult dungeon when it was first introduced in patch 2.1, but it's been toned down somewhat since that time. The main attraction for many people is to exact bloody vengeance on Siren, who is the star of a tricky part of the main scenario quest on the road to level 50. She won't go down easy, though, so be ready for a tough battle. But first, there's three other bosses standing in your way as you ascend the tower.
Symond the Unsinkable
Take care to avoid his beam attack. This is easy enough to dodge, but if it does hit it will inflict you with a stack of the Crystal debuff. If you take three stacks of this, the crystals will burst and deal heavy damage, so try to avoid this happening as much as possible.
Throughout the fight, he'll summon adds that need to die quickly, because they can also inflict the crystal debuff. He'll also cast two large circular areas of effect on the ground that will gradually grow; when this happens, try to all gather on the same side of the room -- particularly the tank and healer -- before the room gets completely divided.
Take care to avoid the area of effect attacks and Crystal debuffs as much as possible and this fight shouldn't give you too much difficulty.
In this fight, the eggs around the perimeter of the room will occasionally hatch, spawning additional monsters. You can destroy the eggs -- the one about to hatch will be glowing -- but this will give Zu a stack of Enrage, which will increase Zu's damage taken and dealt. Be careful, though; if Zu gets too many stacks of Enrage -- usually over 15 or so -- then a powerful attack will hit and stun the whole party, often resulting in a wipe. As such, don't kill eggs unless you have to; generally speaking, when the eggs start to hatch, a DPS should kill one of them and then let the others hatch -- kill the adds quickly to avoid too much trouble.
About halfway through the fight, Zu will fly up and become unhittable. At this stage, take care to avoid her area of effect attacks and deal with any chicks that are still running around before she lands. You should then be able to finish her off without too much difficulty.
After the first two bosses, this one is insultingly easy. Simply tank-and-spank until it's dead, though the tank should take care to Flash or Overpower the zombie adds when they appear to keep them off the more vulnerable members of the party.
This is the big one, with a fair few mechanics to pay attention to. Stay calm and concentrate and you'll be fine, though!
The main thing to watch out for is her Siren Song debuff. This will be inflicted on a single player at once, and can be dispelled by the healer restoring the victim's HP to full. Prioritize healing those suffering from Siren's Song above everything else, as mind-controlled heroes can be dangerous, even though they only perform their basic attacks.
When Siren disappears, everyone should stack in the middle of the arena and quickly look around. If you see her on the outside of the arena, move to one side to avoid her Ifrit-style charge attack; if she doesn't appear, stay in the middle to avoid her area-effect Siren Song, which can be devastating if the healer is unable to keep up with it.
At regular intervals throughout the fight, Siren will summon Zombie Privates and Zombie Sergeants. Prioritize killing the Zombie Sergeants -- the ones crawling on the floor -- as these will completely disable a character (usually the tank or the healer) if they manage to grab their legs. Don't neglect the Privates, though; they can deal some nasty damage if you let them pile up.
About halfway through the fight, Siren will start using an ability called Lunatic Voice, which will make it harder for characters to be healed. The tank should try and stun this if at all possible.
This is a difficult fight that is hard work for the healer in particular, but man, is it a great feeling when you finally triumph.
Required level: 50
Unlocked by: Sidequest "This Time's for Fun" from Hugubert, Mor Dhona. You must also have finished the main scenario.
After successfully clearing Halatali of monsters, Halatali has been deliberately filled with monsters and turned back to its original purpose: a gladiatorial training pit in which challengers can show up, battle some horrible monsters and hopefully come out smelling of roses rather than intestines.
Avoid the boss' laser attacks by trying not to stand directly in front of him if at all possible. Ranged DPS will probably want to stick close to the Mammet that is wandering aimlessly around the outside of the room.
When Pyracmon starts charging his 100 Tonze Swing attack, one player should pull the lever that is connected to the Mammet, then everyone should gather on the Mammet, which will create a Manawall to protect against the incoming damage. Simply repeat the process until Pyracmon falls to your assault.
There are two main things to do in this fight. Everyone should spread out and stand by one of the pedestals, but don't activate it yet. Deal some damage to Catoblepas and after a short while, it will start casting Demon Eye. When this happens, use the orb on your pedestal to become protected by Gloam.
After Demon Eye, Catoblepas' eye will normally start glowing and become separately targetable. Destroy it as quickly as possible, because while it's up it will continually deal damage to the whole party. After this, simply repeat the process until Catoblepas is no more.
The Big Fight
This battle unfolds in two phases. Initially you'll be fighting a party of four hero-like characters with level 50 abilities. The lancer/dragoon in the enemy party has no aggro table, so will focus his attention exclusively on the character marked with the crosshairs at the start of the fight. You may wish to deal with him first, or take down the healer as a priority while kiting the lancer. After these two are down, kill off the bard then the gladiator to begin the second phase.
Here, a small Lalafell mage will be accompanied by a giant monster. Concentrate on the mage first. His main special ability is to chain characters in place and then start casting a big area of effect attack. At least one character will remain unchained and should run to the Thal's Scepter object that appears in the room, then activate it to unchain everyone and allow them to step out of the way of the large AoE.
Keep dealing with the chains as they show up and the mage will be down before long. Tank-and-spank the big monster to finish the fight and clear the dungeon.
Brayflox's Longstop (Hard)
Required level: 50
Unlocked by: Sidequest "Curds and Slay" from Bloezoeng, Mor Dhona. You must also have finished the main scenario.
This is the easiest of the "Expert" dungeons, and with a well-geared party can easily be cleared in 15 minutes or less. This makes it a popular choice for parties looking to earn a lot of Myth and/or Soldiery Tomes in a short period of time. If you're playing with random people through Duty Finder, be sure to clear a speedrun with the rest of the party in advance, though; there may be some people joining you who aren't as well geared and who need to take their time a little more. Speedruns are hard on the tank and healer in particular.
This boss is Bomberman. Regularly throughout the fight, he will drop bombs in the arena that will explode in a cross-shaped pattern, so step out of the markers when they appear.
Occasionally, Sniper enemies will show up that appear to be aggro-locked, but their attention can be passed on to another player by hiding behind them. If you're a squishy character like a mage and you attract the attention of a Sniper, stand behind the tank to pass the aggro to them -- you'll know you've done it right if the crosshairs move from you to them.
Knock down the Snipers when they appear, avoid the bombs and burn the Commander as quickly as you can and this encounter will be done with pretty quickly.
Magitek Vangob G-III
During this fight, the boss will spill blue liquid on the ground. By itself, this doesn't hurt, but if a bomb lands in it the liquid will ignite and do additional damage, so you'll probably want to stay out of it as much as possible.
Some minions will show up throughout the fight; it's a good idea to knock these down as quickly as possible to minimize the amount of damage everyone is taking. The boss will also occasionally target a single player and do a powerful charge attack; if you have the Black Mage ability Manawall, this is a good time to use it and avoid taking a pounding.
Aside from these abilities, this fight is pretty easy.
This fight has a few stages that repeat. Firstly, everyone should stand in the middle and attack the boss, avoiding the single explosive shells it occasionally launches.
Stay in the middle when it becomes untargetable, because it will start racing around the outside of the arena, dealing heavy damage to anyone that gets in the way. At this point, two adds will appear that need to die quickly.
After this, you'll hear a "thump-thump-thump" sound and hundreds of bombs will fall from the sky. Use area-effect skills to knock as many out of the middle as possible, then quick, single-target skills to clean up any stragglers. Knock as many bombs as possible as far away from the middle as possible, then stand in the middle to avoid being blasted.
This process will repeat twice, after which a Giant Bomb will be dropped, which needs to be destroyed to avoid a complete party wipe. Use your Limit Break on this if you haven't already.
It's actually possible to kill the Gobmachine before the third set of bombs if you time a Limit Break carefully and have good enough gear. If you can master this, it makes speedruns even quicker.
The Lost City of Amdapor
Required level: 50
Unlocked by: Sidequest "One Night in Amdapor" from E-Sumi-Yan, Old Gridania. You must also have finished the main scenario.
Director Naoki Yoshida described this dungeon as the hardest 4-player dungeon in the game so far. Most of it isn't too bad, but the final boss can cause an unprepared party some difficulty. Also be wary of the large groups of monsters in the last stage of the dungeon; healers should be ready to deal with some heavy incoming damage on the tank.
This is easy; simply attack the Gourmand with your most powerful abilities. When a party member gets devoured, attack the Gourmand's stomach to release them. Rinse and repeat.
This is similarly straightforward, but concentrate; you can't attack the boss immediately, and aggro is determined by who killed the most small moths rather than normally. As such, DPS classes should take care to damage the moths and let the tank finish them off as much as possible. Alternate between damaging Arioch and killing moths and this encounter will be over fairly quickly.
Don't let the previous two bosses lull you into a false sense of security; this is a tricky fight if you're not prepared.
The main thing to note in this battle is the series of doors around the outside of the arena. These will be briefly marked with symbols when the battle starts, and there is one pair of each symbol. Someone should take responsibility for marking at least two pairs of doors as the battle starts -- mark one with "target to attack 1" and "2" and the other with "target to bind 1" and "2" to distinguish them -- and at least one character should take responsibility for opening the doors when necessary.
Open one door of a pair at the start of the fight, then turn your attention to Diabolos. When Diabolos starts casting Ruinous Omen, move to the corresponding door and open it when he's roughly 50% through casting. This will suck the party into the void and, if you timed it right, protect you from Ruinous Omen. The doors will disappear after they've been used.
With a well-geared party, you shouldn't have to survive more than two Ruinous Omens before the fight is won.