The Fighter class is about as straightforward as you're going to get in Dragon's Crown. The Fighter does everything he needs to do, from barging through hordes of enemies to protecting his entire party. You can play him as an offensive beast, ignoring all forms of defense and mashing the attack button, or you can play him like a tank in an MMORPG and draw enemies away from the rest of your party, focusing their attention on you.
Read Prima's Dragon's Crown Beginner's Tips for even more strategies.
As a Fighter, it's easy to assume that he hits hard with physical attacks. If you had any questions about this, his strength stat should more than convince you. With the best ranking in the game, the Fighter is the king of physical attacks and makes quick work of most foes. This means that while he has plenty of defensive options, you can simply hack and slash your way to victory if you so choose.
The Fighter can be played in many different ways. One such way is the role of a tank, a class that defends and protects the entire party. As one of only two classes that can perform this task well, it stands to reason that the Fighter would have a very high constitution rank. The high ranking indicates that he has exceptional defense, and can take a few hits before he's in danger of dying.
With the Fighter having such a huge offensive role in the party and large physical presence, it's not surprising that his magic attack ranking is rather low. With a D-rank for intelligence, the Fighter won't cast damaging spells on your next adventure. However, he doesn't have any magic abilities, so it doesn't have a significant impact on how you play.
Magic Resistance: C
As a potential tanking class, it's a moderate concern that Fighters only have a C rank when it comes to magic resistance. While there are not a large number of magic-based enemies, there are enough to warrant a higher magic resistance rank for the Fighter. Alas, this is not the case, so if you're up against magic-based enemies or bosses, you may want to supplement his lack of magic defense with gear that gives him additional magic resistance, or higher HP in general.
Fighters mainly use swords and axes, and they tend to have a wide range of attack power. It's not uncommon to see a weapon with a damage range of 10 points or more at lower levels, and an even higher gap as you progress. So the fact that Fighters have a moderately high dexterity rank is a very good thing. It means that more often than not you'll hit on the higher end of that damage range. When you're deciding which weapon to equip, pay more attention to the higher damage number than the lower one. The lower number is still significant, but you don't have to worry about it quite as much compared to the Dwarf class.
With a B rank in luck, the Fighter will get his fair share of critical hits. However, because he hits so hard without the need for critical hits, it really doesn't make a significant impact. It's a nice little bonus to a pre-existing powerhouse, but it doesn't make or break the Fighter, and it certainly won't change your play style at all.
Most of the classes in Dragon's Crown fit into a specific party role. They have one primary function, and they do it well. The Fighter is one of the few classes that can be played in a variety of ways. If you're a casual player who just wants to have quick bursts of fun, you can go to town with his offensive capabilities. Equip the most damaging weapon you can find, level up all of the Fighter's best offensive skills and cut through hordes of enemies like they were never there.
This tactic works surprisingly well, even against bosses. You may have to put a little more strategy into boss battles, tossing in an evade or block here or there, but with the raw might of the Fighter class, mindless offense is a viable strategy. It can be pretty fun too.
If you wish to be a little more strategic in how you play, you can combine your offensive tactics with the defensive abilities of the Fighter class, or leave the brunt of the attacking to other classes and focus on protecting your party. Fighters are one of the few classes with the ability to block attacks, and they have several skills that allow them to not only protect other party members, but enhance their attacks as well.
There are specific missions and bonuses awarded to those who can protect NPCs or even party members. While these are not detrimental to progressing through the game, it's another challenge waiting to be overcome. In a party situation, you can boost the magic attack power of the Wizard, Sorceress and Elf with some of the Fighter's defensive skills. Against certain bosses, this can make the fight much easier.
Once you've played through quite a bit of Dragon's Crown and are chaining dungeons, the protection skills of the Fighter come in handy. When you aren't going back to town to replenish your supplies and repair your gear, the Fighter saves a lot of wear and tear by taking most of the damage, or simply protecting the other party members with his shield and various skills.
When it comes to selecting your fellow party members, how you play should determine which classes you party with. If you're going with all out offense, pick a Sorceress to supplement your offense with support magic, and two melee classes (Dwarf, Amazon or Fighter) to complement your barrage of attacks. With higher-level NPC party members, you can add an Elf as well. If you chose to play more defensively, a Wizard and Sorceress are good additions that benefit from the Fighter's Cover Allies skill.
It's hard to say which of the many great skills at the Fighter's disposal are the best, but if we had to make a list of top skills, the Cyclone Master skill would be pretty high. It basically gives the Fighter more attacks while he's in the air. This comes in handy against aerial foes, but especially during boss battles. While many bosses can attack above them, most of their attacks are limited to targets on the ground. Level up this skill, then use a plethora or airborne attacks to take down bosses. If you need to avoid an attack, use an air dash to get away.
While not the most important skill in the Fighter's arsenal, Judgement is quite useful. With Cyclone Master leveled up, you'll probably spend a decent amount of time in the air. Judgement adds a shockwave to the Fighter's downward aerial attack. As soon as he hits the ground, the shockwave inflicts damage to enemies in the general area. This skill goes well with Rebuke, which increases the power of the shockwave (as well as the power of the Fighter's Power Smash). It's not the most amazing skill a Fighter has access to, but it's a nice addition that comes in handy when you've exhausted your aerial attacks and land a downward strike.
The Tempest Edge skill basically gives the Fighter a damaging ground-based combo that works well in almost any situation. It hits aerial opponents and has a wider range of attack than the animation would make you believe. It also inflicts a decent amount of damage and works well if an opponent gets knocked into the air with your initial series of attacks.
If you like to play the Fighter in a defensive manner, Cover Allies is one of the first skills you should level up. It creates a circle of shields, which protects your party members and boosts their attack power. This is especially helpful if you're partying with a Wizard, Sorceress or Elf, but it comes in handy if any party member has low health or needs assistance. As you increase the level of the skill, the range of your protection circle widens and the magic attack bonus increases.
The Reflex Guard skill gives the Fighter a chance to block an attack randomly. That means if you're about to get hit, you may block it instead. The more you level up this skill, the higher the chance of this occurring. It's another one of the Fighter's defensive abilities, but it comes in handy whether you're playing defensively or not. In fact, it's better if you're playing offensively because you're not focused on blocking, which is when this skill is most effective.
Distraction is an inventory item skill that makes enemies in the nearby area focus their attention on the Fighter. As you increase the level of the skill, it distracts more enemies, can be used more times and increases the damage dealt while enemies are distracted. This is a great tool to use during large group battles because the increased damage adds to the Fighter's already high damage output and allows enemies to go down with relative ease. It also allows the rest of your party to get behind the enemies and avoid most of their attacks. It won't work on all enemies, but it comes in handy more often than not.