One common thought on leveling jobs up is to use a “set” or “static” party. I find this to be the most efficient, provided the group can meet more than one or two days per week, since the time spent finding members is removed completely if the set is six members. Additionally, knowing who the members are lets the leader pick out a camp ahead of time.
I’ve read several accounts of successful set parties and participated in several over the years. But with the advent of Level Sync and the removal of the restriction that all members must be within x levels of one another, are set parties really so necessary anymore? I believe so. Why do I say this? Is it an old bias against the general population of Vana’diel? I will tell you.
First of all, the removal of the wait for x job to pop on seek and pray you get them is a godsend. While Level Sync alleviated this slightly, the fact that a healer, or tank, or a Bard or Corsair may never pop still stifles the “awesome” parties. A very efficient set includes a Bard or a Corsair, so the lack of one being on seek alleviates that problem.
Secondly, familiarity with the party members works wonders for picking out a camp. Some camps in the game are just too out of the way or dangerous even to consider bringing a party consisting entirely of pick-up members to. Case in point is one of the older camps: bones in Gustav Tunnel in the late 60s. Another good example is Dragon’s Aery around 70. Having to walk through the entirety of The Boyahda Tree to reach this camp creates many opportunities for aggro. Aht Urhgan’s Runic Portal system alleviated this issue somewhat, but many camps exist before the Aht Urhgan levels that present this problem.
Finally, with the advent of Level Sync, the requirement that members could not do anything on their “party” job for fear of going too far ahead of the others no longer limits set parties. Did someone get an invite and get a level or two? Just sync them to the person with the most exp to level and go with it.
In general, I still find a set to be the most efficient way to level from 10-75. Provided you can find someone in your circle of friends to take up Bard or Corsair or a healing job, you can pretty much work your way up without too much difficulty. Of the four jobs I’ve levelled, three of them have been, at least in part, in sets. I had a set early on on Red Mage to get to 37, then later in the 60s got one with the same people. Bard was in a semi-set from 10 all the way to 75 and Dark Knight from 40 onwards to 75.
I suppose the vast disparity in party quality I’ve had on various jobs leads me to believe this. Flagging for a pickup really is leaving yourself to the masses. On some jobs, that is a very scary proposition.
Tonight is Dynamis-Bastok (/doze). I hope at least one pair of Abyss Sollerets and Saotome Kote drop. I need the sollerets to complete Dark Knight relic 6/6, and a good friend of mine needs the Saotome Kote for his SAM. Maybe multiple kote will drop and I can pay for them for my up-and-coming SAM. Hit 47 Monday evening in a party that ended badly. Ah well, such is life.
And now, we return to the grind of daily work.