FFXIV Determination Guide: What It Is & How It Works

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Determination is a stat that helps increase the player’s overall damage and healing output. It does this by giving the player very small but consistent multiplier bonuses as your Determination goes up.

For every 14 points of Determination, your damage and healing output will go up by 0.1%.

This may seem like a miniscule amount – but it will add up, as your Determination can easily reach quadruple digits by level 90.

You can check your Determination stat by opening your character menu like this:

  • Hit “C” on your keyboard or press the “Options/Start” button if you’re using a controller
  • You can find your current Determination on the left side of the window under “Offensive Properties” (see the image below)
Stats Menu / FFXIV
Stats Menu

You can increase your Determination through gear, materia, or by consuming certain items.

As of patch 6.0, there are no job or class abilities that directly affect Determination.


Determination vs. Critical Hit vs. Direct Hit

Bard Player Taking Aim / FFXIV
Bard Player Taking Aim

If you’ve gone ahead and checked your current Determination through the Character menu, you may have noticed that it’s grouped with two other stats in the Offensive Properties section called “Critical Hit” and “Direct Hit Rate”.

Let’s go over how these stats work to see how they differ.


Critical Hit Stat

Critical Hit Text onscreen / FFXIV
Critical Hit Text onscreen

Landing a critical hit will deal significantly more damage than a normal hit would. Building up your Critical Hit stat will:

  • Improve that damage bonus
  • And also increase the chances of your hits being critical

Critical hits can also be applied to healing spells. This is especially beneficial for Sages and Scholars since some of their spells gain added bonuses for landing critical heals.

The default damage bonus for critical hits is 40%. The base rate for critical hit chance is 5%.

You can tell that a hit is critical when the damage that pops up is displayed with a much larger font and an exclamation point at the end.

Here are some abilities that affect a player’s Critical Hit Rate:

  • Devilment (Level 62 Dancer) – Critical Hit Rate +20% for 20 seconds
  • Battle Litany (Level 52 Dragoon) – Critical Hit Rate +10% for 15 seconds
  • Chain Stratagem (Level 66 Scholar) – Critical Hit Rate +10% for 15 seconds
  • Wanderer’s Minuet (Level 52 Bard) – Critical Hit Rate +2% for 45 seconds
Normal Hit Text screenshot / FFXIV
Normal Hit Text screenshot

Direct Hit Rate

Direct Hit Text / FFXIV
Direct Hit Text

Direct hits will always have a 25% increase in damage dealt.

Raising your Direct Hit stat will only increase the chance of landing a direct hit.

Note: a direct hit can occur at the same time as a critical hit, resulting in a huge spike in damage.

Healing spells are not affected by direct hits. So raising your Direct Hit Rate stat as a Healer will only contribute to your offensive spells.

A direct hit is indicated by slightly larger text when the damage shows up on screen. You can tell a hit is both direct and critical when it’s displayed with a significantly larger text and two exclamation points at the end.

Here are some abilities that can be used in battle to help boost the party’s Direct Hit Rate:

  • Devilment (Level 62 Dancer) – Direct Hit Rate +20% for 20 seconds
  • Battle Voice (Level 50 Bard) – Direct Hit Rate +20% for 15 seconds
  • Army’s Paeon (Level 40 Bard) – Direct Hit Rate +3% for 45 seconds
Direct Critical Hit Text / FFXIV
Direct Critical Hit Text

Stat Prioritization

In FFXIV, everyone is expected to contribute in dealing damage regardless of their role.

This makes dungeons and trials go a lot smoother and quicker, and ensures that certain DPS checks are met when they occur.

With that being the case, a vast majority of players will have these stats prioritized like this:

  1. Critical Hit
  2. Direct Hit Rate
  3. Determination

Many have Critical Hit at the top of their stat priority list since it has the biggest potential jump in damage output while also affecting healing spells.

Then the next priority would be Direct Hit Rate. While its damage bonus isn’t as big as Critical Hit’s bonus, it is still a significant amount and happens much more consistently.

And finally, we have Determination as a lower priority. Though it affects all types of outgoing damage and healing, the overall bonus is still relatively small compared to what Critical Hit and Direct Hit Rate have to offer.

In fact, before raising Determination, some players consider increasing stats from the other groups in their character menu such as Skill Speed, Spell Speed, or Piety.

There are several factors that could play into making this decision such as the job you play, your play style, and even your Internet connection.


Increasing Determination

Eating Food for Buffs / FFXIV
Eating Food for Buffs

If you feel you’re all set with your other stats and want to start raising your Determination, there are a few options to do that.


Determination with Gear

Equipment Bonus Stats / FFXIV
Equipment Bonus Stats

When you look at a piece of gear in FFXIV, you’ll notice there’s a section of the description marked “Bonuses” and lists down 4 stats (5 in some cases), each with their own value.

These are stats you gain by equipping that piece of gear.

Of the stats shown here, 1 will always be your job’s main attribute (strength, dexterity, intelligence, or mind) and 1 will always be vitality.

The remaining two will be a combination of the other stats like Critical Hit and Determination, or Spell Speed and Tenacity.

Take a look at these stat bonuses carefully, as some equipment might offer a higher bonus to Determination than others even if they are at the same item level.

Some pieces of gear won’t even offer any bonuses to Determination at all.


Determination with Materia

Materia Melder NPC / FFXIV
Materia Melder NPC

Just under the stat bonuses section in a piece of equipment’s description, you might see another portion labeled “Materia”.

This part of the gear description is usually blank by default.

Melding materia onto equipment lets you choose what stats you want to add to it on top of the stat bonuses it already provides.

You can meld materia through a few different ways:

  • Through a Materia Melder NPC
  • By leveling crafting jobs and melding yourself
  • Asking a friend with the required crafting job to meld it for you

The number of materia you can attach to a piece of equipment is limited to the number of slots shown in the Materia section of the description.

There are cases where you can go beyond the number of available slots on a piece of gear and meld up to 5 materia. This is known as “overmelding” or “penta-melding” among FFXIV players.

The materia that increases determination is called “Savage Might”, and the latest tiers are IX and X as of patch 6.0.

Each Savage Might Materia IX melded onto equipment will add an extra 12 Determination, while Savage Might Materia X will give 36.

Note: Each stat that can be increased with materia melding caps out at certain values depending on the equipment’s item level.


Food Buffs

Pumpkin Potage / FFXIV
Pumpkin Potage

Using food items is a great way to boost your stats during a raid or dungeon.

Each dish will boost a different set of stats for different values. The buff will last for 30 minutes, but can be extended to 1 hour by consuming more than one item.

Here are some of the best foods to eat to boost your Determination as of patch 6.0:

  • Pumpkin Potage – Determination +8%, Vitality +8%, Critical Hit +8%
  • Scallop Curry – Determination +8%, Vitality +8%, Tenacity +8%
  • Archon Burger – Direct Hit Rate +8%, Vitality +8%, Determination +8%
  • Peach Juice – Piety +8%, Vitality +8%, Determination +8%
  • Scallop Salad – Tenacity +8%, Vitality +8%, Determination +8%

That said, there’s a really long list of other food items you can choose from to increase your Determination. The ones above are just some notable options.

So which foods you choose to eat can depend on other factors, like their price or availability on the market board.

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Marco Cadayona

Shower singer by day, bard main by night. Gamer since 1992.