New Player Guide

Welcome to Nocturnal Souls! Whether you’re new to Final Fantasy XI or just new to our community, here’s a few pointers to get the most out of your experience.

Client Setup

If you’ve been playing FFXI on another server or on retail, this section is probably just review. If not, there’s a couple of important steps to ensure you’re getting the best experience in FFXI.

  • We support two clients: Windower and Ashita. Each have their pros and cons. The NocSouls team is all using Ashita, so we’re best prepared to answer questions on Ashita. If you have technical questions on installation of either client, the best source of information is the Ashita or Windower Discords.
  • Be sure you’re installed the Renamer add-on for Windower or Ashita and load Nocturnal Souls’ custom renamer list. This ensures that our custom content isn’t mislabeled or simply called NPC. You can read more about the Renamer plugin here.
  • If you’re newly installed, there’s a ton of new UI features built into FFXI’s client, including multiple chat windows, AOE markers, and party buff lists. Read about tweaking the UI here and learn about the High-Definition (HD) DATs projects to make the game look amazing.

A new switch is available to remove the very bad glow around some avatars and models–the overly pixilated effect. This will make previously pixilated models clean and crisp.

/localsettings blureffect off

Getting Started

Brand new to FFXI?

If you’re brand new to FFXI, here’s a few helpful links to get accustomed to the game. Keep in mind that FFXI is from 2002 and originally designed for a PS2 controller, so much of the controls are either keyboard or controller driven.

Starting Gear

All new players receive a few great items to start their journey. At level 1, the traditional retail starter gear provides excellent bonuses and safeguards to get you to level 10 quickly.

  • Lv1 Destrier Beret - Adds regen, refresh, auto-reraise, and a huge movement speed buff while you’re below level 30.
  • Lv1 Chocobo Shirt - Adds an increased battle accuracy while you’re below level 30.

Once you’re level 10, the jewelry will provide great secondary stat bonuses to new players all the way to their 40s and 50s.

  • Lv10 Safeguard Ring - A general purpose ring augmented with defense, magic defense, weaponskill accuracy, and vitality.
  • Lv10 Tranquility Earring +1 - A caster-focused ring augmented with fast cast, magic attack bonus, mind, and intelligence.
  • Lv10 Stamina Earring +1 - A melee-focused ring augmented with attack, store TP, strength, and dexterity.

First Steps

Final Fantasy XI allows players to jump into whatever they want to do from level 1.

  • Want to start leveling? Equip your gear, go outside, and start fighting mobs to level up!
  • Want to dig into your nation’s lore? Talk to a gate guard and get started on your nation’s storyline.
  • Want to start crafting? Visit a guild, join, and start making items.
  • and whatever else!

To help guide this, we created the Adventure Quest custom storyline to help guide players from 1 to 99, introduce basic features and our custom systems, and provide a smooth gearing path for player’s first character. It’s recommended all players, new and veteran, start here.


Once you’re logged in, you’ll have the NocturnalSouls linkshell equipped. This is the shared linkshell used by the whole server for communication, alerts, and status update.

  • /s to talk in local, general chat (nearby)
  • /l to talk in linkshell chat. By default, all players start with our server linkshell equipped.
  • /p to talk in party chat when grouping with a small team.
  • /a to talk in alliance chat when group with with a large team (multiple parties).

Also, consider joining our Discord (be sure to introduce yourself in #introductions channel). Server updates, maintenance notices, as well as several channels focused on supporting the community exist in Discord–it is our primary medium for communication.


When joining Discord, be sure to set your nickname to your in-game name so players can easily find you. Please. ;)

Important Commands

Private servers support custom commands. The custom commands on Nocturnal Souls provide teleports, stat bonuses, and information about your character. When starting out, a few of these can make your leveling experience a lot better. Custom commands always start with !.

  • Be sure to always have on signet, either from a gate guard in your nation or via the !signet command. It provides a level-based buff to defense, evasion, HP regen, MP refresh, TP regain, and haste. You can stack spells on top of these effects for more benefits.
    • If you’re leveling in ToAU zones, use !sanction and in WOTG (“Shadowrealm/Shadowera”) zones, use !sigil.
  • You can use !shop 1 and !shop 2 to purchase food and medicine to make battles go quicker.
  • You can easily get back to your home point by using !home or leave a dungeon area with !escape. For longer distance travel, the !tele command can get you most anywhere in Vana’diel and the !telelist command allows you to create custom telepoints. In addition, we support the Survival Guide system (automatically unlocked for all players) and the Voidwatch teleport system (unlocked as players progress through the Voidwatch campaign).

When you enter an instanced fight or are level sync’d, remember that your buffs are removed. Be sure to reuse !signet for your buffs!

Bonus EXP Opportunities

As you’re leveling up, experience gain rate on Nocturnal Souls is increased. It’s about comparable to having all of the Rhapsodies of Vana’diel completed on retail.

  • The Field and Grounds of Valor books are enabled and experience from these are buffed up a bit. You can use the !gotoexp command or Survival Guides to teleport to popular EXP camps and the list provides recommended pages and targets. After each completion, you’ll gain a significant Dedication bonus for 10 minutes. Use it to boost your gains as you work on the pages.
  • Daily Hunts provide a good deal of experience points simply for killing common enemy types and provide currency used once you reach higher levels for gear enhancements.
  • Daily BCNMs, available at level 20 and up, provide experience points, gil, and rare and HQ equipment for the level range of the fight. These are great to do every day, even the lower level ones, to acquire gear for leveling other jobs.
  • Crafting provides job-level experience. If you’re tired of fighting baddies, head to town and work on your favorite craft–you’ll gain a fair share of experience points every time you skill up!
  • The 20th of every month is NocSouls Day offering bonus experience, gifts, and other rewards to players each time they level up!

Bonus: Pointers for faster leveling

by Webjester

Your first couple of climbs to 99 will be quick, but once you gear out some augmented sets and add support jobs, you’ll really fly.

Here are some suggestions:

  1. Target EXP camps that use FoV/GoV pages for the additional experience points and Dedication buff.
  2. Team up with other players whenever possible. Sharing a camp works great! You can go as far as to build a full alliance and everyone will benefit from exp pages.
  3. Use Level Sync whenever someone lower level shows up to your camp.
    • You’ll extend the life of the camp, and make new friends along the way!

What should I do as I level up?

The Adventure Quest introduces several features to players as they explore the world, however, there are several hobbies that, when started early, pay off when players get to max level.

  • Work on nation and storyline missions. Completion of the nation missions is required a part of Adventure Quest, but beyond the requirement, the bonus gil these missions provide is also very beneficial. Nation rank missions provide some of the best gil available to newer players–rank 2 is 50,000 gil alone!
  • Work on chocobo digging. Chocobo digging unlocks at level 20 (after acquiring your chocobo license) and can provide augments, rare materials, and is required for Heroics missions.
  • Work on crafting and synergy. Crafting provides players with bonus job experience points every successful skill-up and can help level jobs even faster. Synergy unlocks when at least four synthesis crafts are skill level 10 or higher and lets players participate in some of the seasonal event crafts. Both of these are extensively used at level 99+ content, including Empyrean Weapons and Heroics.
  • Complete daily BCNMs and hunts as often as possible. These rewards and currencies will be useful later on. The bonus experience points and gil is great too!
  • Unlock Voidwatch when you hit 75. Once your first job reaches level 75 and finished the requirements, unlock Voidwatch so you can start accumulating voidstones.

I just hit 99, what do I do now?

Well, that’s a great question. By 99, if you’ve been doing a few daily BCNMs and a daily hunt here and there, you should have some stored up Alexandrite and Tanzanite Jewels. Progression through the Adventure Quest should have provided you with a comfortable set of gear as you start working on your introductory level 99+ gearsets.


Vana’diel has no lack of non-combat content at 99. Don’t forget to work on your hobbies as to cap them out–there’s benefits to being self-sufficient!

  • Work on capping your mog gardening. Capped mog gardening is a requirement the Pioneers coalition in Heroics (see below).
  • Work on capping your chocobo digging. Capped chocobo digging is a requirement for the Pioneers coalition in Heroics (see below).
  • Both crafting and synergy are used for unlocks for the Couriers and Inventors coalitions and provides access to numerous crafted materials used in the Empyrean Weapon trials.
  • Looking for a laid back afternoon? Try fishing and the various mini-games and quests associated to fishing. If you’re working on your Cooking, fishing is a great side-hobby.


While you’ll complete your nation’s storyline as part of the Adventure Quest, there’s other storylines available. Some content, such as access to Reisenjima Henge, is locked behind completing some of the storyline.

Expansion Reisenjima Henge Dynamis Divergence Heroics Master Job Quests
Rise of the Zilart
Chains of Promathia
Treasures of Aht Urhgan

Are you a grizzled veteran and done the storylines over and over? Our Fast Tracks may appeal to you allowing you to “buy” your way out of a storyline. Players who complete the stories can also use the system to get bonus rewards for taking the time to do it. Pick your tradeoff!


First off, go snag a i117 weapon from Eternal Flame in Western Adoulin (!relax, H-11) or a i119 weapon from one of the many NMs throughout the world that drop weapons. You’ll NEED the +Accuracy bonus on an i119 weapon to be able to hit level 115+ mobs. If you’re looking for something in particular, use the Items search on the Members Portal or ask in Linkshell for recommendations. Many of the open world NMs drop great starter weapons.

At this point, you’re ready to start your relic and/or mythic weapons. Keep in mind, depending on your job, some relic weapons may not exist (such as for SCH or DNC). In those cases, focus on acquiring a mythic weapon.

  • Acquire a Relic i119 III is fairly quick and requires the least amount of time as many of the NMs are on very short timers or can be forced spawned at their ??? marks.
    • To save time, aim for weapons that can be used by multiple jobs. For example, the Mandau can be used by both THF and RDMs and makes an excellent relic weapon.
    • Dynamis-Tanzania is an open-world, farmable zone for getting currency items to build relic weapons. Currency drops very easily with Treasure Hunter.
  • Acquire a Mythic i119 III requires a bit more time as each starter weapon must be farmed and the final phase can be challenging for some jobs. Many players can easily complete a weapon in an afternoon. Team up with other players to speed things up.

If completing a relic for progression (storyline that requires a completed relic), the Aegis and Gjallarhorn do not count as they do not go past level 99 II. Only the weapons themselves count for full completion of the Relic line.


You should be working to unlock your gear progression upgrades from Vainrachault in the !relax area as soon as possible. Each of these tiers will let you upgrade your armor a bit more. In addition, the Alexandrite and Tanzanite Jewels gained from Daily BCNMs, hunts, Legion, and other events will go to use in upgrading the armor.

  • Acquire your Reforged Artifact i119 set to +1/+2.
  • Acquire your Reforged Relic i119 set to +1/+2.
  • Acquire your Reforged Empyrean i119 set to +1.
    • The Reforged Empyrean i119 set is only available to +2 as SquareEnix never added higher tiers; however, several pieces are beneficial to players who min/max using gear sets for various abilities.

Getting into “end game”

  • Complete the Halls of Legion.
    • The 4 lower tiers should present little difficulty for you if you’ve been following along and gearing up with the recommendations in the guide.
    • Tier 5 final bosses are jerks and have some nasty moves. It’s suggested that you team up to clear this hall. There are usually players who need this hall for their Heroics missions–be sure to ask in Linkshell!
  • Continue clearing the daily BCNMs, including the now available level 99 fight against the Forgotten Protector.
  • Work your way through the Voidwatch campaign as your voidstones become available (be sure to collect them every day!).
    • Pro-tip: Use !telelist to set a return point at a safe spot before you pop each NM. Some NMs use Death moves, and having a quick return will help you conserve your stones so you can nab the NM again before it de-pops.
    • Pro-pro tip: Get in the habit of pre-casting Blink or Utsusemi before spawning any mob for any piece of content, so it absorbs Death. 😄
  • Unlock and work through ZNMs in Aht Urhgan. The ZNMs drop the starter weapons for the Mythic weapon trials (see below)
  • Take advantage of the augment system to further customize and buff your gear.
  • Unlock and explore Dyanmis Divergence to upgrade your Reforged Relic i119 gear and build your JSE neckpiece.

Preparing for Heroics and beyond

Speaking of Heroics, speak to Zezarn in Western Adoulin to get started with your Heroics. This unlock requires level 99/99 and the three primary expansions complete (RoZ, CoP, and ToAU) to begin. Once you’ve unlocked Heroics, you can begin working to unlock each coalition and accuring mission completions and infamy.

  • Peacekeepers: Complete a i119 III Empyrean Weapon
  • Pioneers: Unlock and reach skill 100 in Mog Gardening and Chocobo Digging
  • Scouts: Rank 10 in your current nation (yay for following the guide!)
  • Couriers: Skill 100 in 4 crafts (You did rank 10, so you should have a couple Million gil sitting around to bankroll your skills)
    • Use Kitron Macaron and a Shapers Shawl to help your skill-ups.
    • Try to maintain a gap of 10 (15 if you use advanced synthesis support) for a higher skill-up rate.
  • Inventors: Synergy skill 15
    • You will have the requirements to unlock Synergy done by completing the Couriers quest.

Other Questions?

If you have questions or problems, be sure to check out the FAQ section. In addition, on the Members Portal, when you log in, you can see a list of upcoming events, browse through the items and monsters database, and see the community members list. Got an idea? Be sure to leave it under the Feedback > Suggestions area!

Also, the staff on Discord is available to help you when possible, feel free to reach out or post a note in the #job_qa or #ffxi_general channels.