Long ago in Final Fantasy XI, the Ninja job had a reputation as a rich player’s job. Because the game had steep consumable requirements, in that every single Ninjutsu spell required a specific tool to cast, it was most popular with players who were already at the level cap, which allowed them to more easily make the gil needed to finance the job’s expenses. The job also existed in a really strange state of balance: though it was designed to be something of a supporting damage class (not unlike its role in FFXIV), it worked far better as a tank. Due to tanking having been originally unintended for the class, though, it didn’t have much in the way of abilities or gear to support that role. Over time, this lead to a number of items becoming highly sought after for Ninja, almost all of them quite expensive—not a problem for the “average” Ninja with a lot of gil!
One of those was FFXI‘s version of the Scorpion Harness, which could serve as both an offensive and defensive piece, since it provided high Accuracy and high Evasion. It was by no means necessary (and would eventually fall out of favor as Evasion-focused tanking became less important anyway), but having one was both a mark of status and often expected by the community for any high level Ninja. I was never one of those rich Ninjas, though. It was my first real main, and what money I did earn in the game almost entirely went toward Ninjutsu Tools so that I could keep on leveling. For most of the time when the Scorpion Harness was relevant to Ninja, it was ever out of my reach (but I took a lot of pride in occasionally out-tanking Ninjas who did have one).
Getting a Harness always remained a goal for me, though, and eventually, my Linkshell decided that I needed one. Over the course of a week or two, they put their time toward getting at least one Venomous Claw (necessary to craft the Harness) from a special high level battlefield, which was no small gesture. Getting into “Burning Circle” battles took large numbers of special seals that dropped rarely from monsters of various level ranges, so donating them for someone else’s progress was a big deal (this one was a “KS30,” meaning that it took 30 Kindred Seals from enemies of level 60 or higher). We did get one of the Claws (I actually think we got 2, but it’s been years), and the team let me have the Scorpion Harness we had made from it, which has always been one of my fondest memories in FFXI.
Since I’ve always been a rather sentimental sort, once I saw that the Scorpion Harness was coming to FFXIV with the first stage of Eureka, I had a goal that was emotionally far more important than any Artifact Armor. Once I was able, I made FFXIV‘s Serket a high priority inside the zone and after a few shots at it, I got the Harness. Of course, I had to put together at least one glamour with it, and though I could have used it for anything, it only felt right to do so for Ninja.
Glamour Components (Required Level: NIN 70)
Weapon: (Replica) Sasuke’s Blades Zeta (Dalamud Red)
Body: Scorpion Harness
Hands: Ala Mhigan Fingerless Gloves of Scouting (Dalamud Red)
Legs: Ramie Trousers of Scouting (Jet Black)
Feet: Songbird Boots
I quickly discovered, however, that the FFXIV version of Alahra is far too much of a city girl to really use the Harness, most especially with her meticulously braided Minfilia hair. I had to do the Harness justice, though, at least for a little while, and I decided to go for something as reminiscent of FFXI as I could manage. Unfortunately, FFXIV‘s Ninja Hakama are rather different from their FFXI equivalents (which were often paired with the Harness for Evasion builds), so I couldn’t go for a one-to-one match on things. We don’t have anything that really matches items like the red Ochiudo’s Kote or Arhat’s Hakama (which aren’t anything like the equivalent item in FFXIV) from FFXI either!
But, I’ve often used the Ramie Trousers to approximate something like the Arhat’s Hakama before, and they worked pretty well alongside the Scorpion Harness here. The Songbird Boots were pretty much assumed after deciding on the Trousers, of course, but they’re also similar in style to the Arhat’s Kyahan that I normally wore with my Harness in FFXI while I had it as well. For gloves, I went with the Ala Mhigan ones mostly because of their being red and black when dyed Dalamud Red. I considered using something like the Amatsu Tekko, but they didn’t quite match the Harness.
To complete the nostalgia factor, I went back to Alahra’s original hair, which, of course, was the same basic style she had in FFXI. It’s funny how much more fitting the Harness seems with a simple change of hairstyle! I probably won’t be keeping the Harness glamoured for too long (at least for now), since I’ve gotten too attached to the Minfilia hair and also because I have the Anemos body piece for Ninja to work with now. But, I’m also fond enough of the Harness that I’m probably going to try to make it work for something more longterm for either Monk or Ninja.