A playerbase collective term for a set of eight staves, wearable by all jobs at level 51 (even those with no native Staff skill), each corresponding to one of the eight elements. They each come in a Normal Quality and High Quality variety.
Along with each having their own unique listed effects, they also carry powerful Hidden Effects, primarily an increase of power and accuracy with magical attacks associated with the equipped staff's element. In several cases, this boost is even applied to things that aren't strictly magic, such as job abilities like Charm and Quick Draw. One, several, or even all of these staves can serve as indispensable tools for many jobs. Be aware, though -- wearing the staff corresponding to the element that's stronger than the element of the attack you're using (for instance, wearing an Ice Staff to use a wind-based attack) carries a penalty to its power and accuracy!
- Fire Staff/Vulcan's Staff-- Favored by Ranged Attack jobs, such as Ranger or Corsair.
- Ice Staff/Aquilo's Staff -- Favored by BLMs for the INT +4/+5 and Elemental Magic +10 bonuses, as well as bonuses to ice magic.
- Wind Staff/Auster's Staff -- Favored by RDMs for the boost to Gravity and occasionally NINs to max out their Evasion bonus while tanking.
- Earth Staff/Terra's Staff -- Favored by RDMs for the boost to Slow/Slow II. Also used by PLDs and NINs in some tanking roles, because of its damage reduction bonus.
- Thunder Staff/Jupiter's Staff -- Favored for the boost to thunder magic.
- Water Staff/Neptune's Staff -- Occasionally used to augment Stoneskin with its MND bonus.
- Light Staff/Apollo's Staff -- Favored by anyone performing the "healer" role in a party, including WHM, RDM, SCH, SMN, and BLU, for its Cure Potency bonus. Also useful for Beastmaster's Charm success, BRDs using Lullaby, WHMs casting Repose, CORs using Light Shot and SCHs casting Luminohelix.
- Dark Staff/Pluto's Staff -- A favorite of all jobs that use MP because of its enhancement to MP healing speed, as well as for bonuses to Drain, Aspir, and Sleep spells.
- The hidden power/accuracy boosts applies only to offensive elemental attacks; "buff" spells are not affected by them. For instance, Stoneskin is not directly enhanced in any way by wearing the Earth Staff upon casting (however, it is "enhanced" in the sense that wearing the staff reduces the physical damage you take as part of one of its visible effects, meaning that Stoneskin will take less physical damage for as long as you're wearing it). Wearing the Water Staff upon casting, however, would provide a slight enhancement to Stoneskin in the form of additional MND (not part of the staff's hidden effects).
- If an elemental attack is an enfeeble (i.e., it does not do direct damage), wearing the correct staff will only enhance its accuracy. The power boost from the hidden effects applies strictly to direct damage only, and will not directly enhance enfeeble duration (although, reducing partial resists by increasing accuracy is still another way to keep enfeeble duration maximized)
- The Dark Staff does not typically reduce the power of healing spells as one might expect (since the Light Staff enhances them). The Cure Potency mod on Light Staff is a listed effect, not a hidden effect, and the Dark Staff carries no such opposing listed effect. However, Cure spells behave differently when used to attack undead; they will ignore the listed effects and start using the hidden effects instead (as with other magical attacks), meaning an Apollo's Staff will enhance the Cure damage by 15% instead of 10% (despite the listed effects showing 10% on both staves), and Dark/Pluto's Staff will actually reduce the Cure damage by 10/15% appropriately.
- Staff Weapon Skills which do magical damage can also be affected by the hidden effects on these staves. The damage of Rock Crusher and Earth Crusher are be enhanced by performing them with an Earth Staff, and Vidohunir and Cataclysm are enhanced when executed with a Dark Staff.
All of the High Quality Elemental Staves are named in honor of a Mythological Roman Deity who is associated with the element of the corresponding staff. See the individual HQ staff page for more details about each one.