Early in the 2.x series, I really disliked Bard. I started FFXIV as an Archer after much deliberation, since Ranger had been my original goal for Alahra back in FFXI and XIV didn’t have much in the way of a traditional rogue archetype for class choices yet. I quickly tired of the gameplay, though, which began (what felt like) a long period of class experimentation that somehow ended up with me as a Scholar main at level 50 when Wanderer’s Palace was still endgame.
I didn’t come back to Archer/Bard for a long time: it was one of the last classes I got to 50 (I think it was the last one, but my memory’s pretty fuzzy—it could have been Black Mage). Once I got it to 50, I largely shelved it, since nothing about it particularly excited me back then. Sometime during the 2.2/2.3 patch cycle, I started gearing it—I think mostly so that I would be ready if Ninja was indeed on Dexterity gear (since I already had all the Monk gear, which I had figured would be the other likely option).
At that point, because I was lazy and didn’t care much for Bard, I didn’t put much effort into creating a unique glamour for it: I ended up basically copying my Monk glamour at the time, but with the Auroral Tabard instead of the Gloam one. The funny thing was, though, that the look worked much better for Bard than Monk, and I ended up using Bard here and there for Hunts as I prepared for Ninja’s release (I was collecting Alexandrite so I would be as close to Nexus as possible when I got NIN to 50).
Head: Augmented Choral Chapeau (Loam Brown Dye) | Body: Auroral Tabard | Hands: Saurian Gloves of Aiming (Loam Brown Dye) | Legs: Light Steel Subligar (Loam Brown Dye) | Feet: Expeditioner’s Thighboots
This look wouldn’t have lasted long if I hadn’t immediately switched all focus to NIN in 2.4, as it had one problem in those terrible days where we had so little in the way of glamour options compared to now: the boots. Bard had no dyeable options other than the Auroral Boots, which were totally not my style. That meant that in that era, the only brown option I had access to was the Allagan Sollerets of Aiming, which are entirely the wrong aesthetic for the Auroral Tabard (the Gloam/Monk had the much more fitting and dyeable Saurian Boots of Striking).
When I came back to Bard in 2.5, I moved onto the ever-useful Bogatyr’s Thighboots of Aiming and began my torrid love-affair with the Kirimu Coat—when I did revisit the Auroral Tabard, I dyed it Jet Black to match the new boots, which I did with some regret, since good-looking white body pieces are so rare. Now that we have the Expeditioner’s Thighboots, though, I can finally “finish” this look in a way that works much better than it did originally.
The sad thing, though, is that since I play both Bard and Machinist, I’m not ever likely to use it. The Auroral Tabard just doesn’t fit MCH at all, so outside of job-specific gear shenanigans, this is sadly a look that will probably remain retired for a good long while. I do lean more toward Bard again these days, so maybe I could pull this out of retirement for at least a little while, though…