The Job Adjustment Phase (ジョブ移行期間, Jobu Ikōkikan?, lit. Job Transition Period) is the period of time after changing a character's job introduced in the 3D versions of Final Fantasy III, which replaced the Capacity system from the original NES version. During the phase, the character's stats are decreased until the adjustment phase is over.
The Job Adjustment Phase is a game-balancing system designed to keep the player from rapidly switching jobs without consequences. This could make the game much easier by giving all characters access to healing or other beneficial spells outside of combat. Since the length of the phase depends on Job Level, it is also a way to encourage the player to use a wide variety of jobs rather than switching to them only when needed, such as making a character a Thief just long enough to pick a lock and then switch back to their previous job.
While under the effects of the Job Adjustment Phase, all five of a character's primary stats are reduced by approximately 12.5%. The reduced stats are indicated by yellow numbers instead of white, and will return to normal after the requisite number of battles has been fought while in that job.
Each job contains hidden values determined by two factors: whether a class is physical or magic-based, and if they are classified as being inherently "Chaotic" or "Lawful". Changing from a Lawful to Chaotic job will take longer than switching from one Lawful job to another, and changing from a Chaotic Magic job to a Lawful Physical will take even longer.
Based on these values, each class can be arranged in a 9x9 grid as shown below.
The player can calculate how long it would take to change from one class to another by using the following formula:
- Job Adjustment Phase = Absolute Value of |Vertical Distance Between Points + Horizontal Distance Between Points - (Desired Job's Job Level / 10)|
Using the grid above, the player must count the number of steps it would take to get from one job to another both horizontally and vertically, and subtract the total from the desired job's Job Level divided by 10. For example, if the player wanted to change from a Freelancer to a Job Level 0 Monk, they would move one space over and one space down, which they could input into the formula like this:
- 1 + 1 - 0/10 = 2 battles
If the result is a negative number, the player must convert it to its absolute value. For example, -7 would become 7, and so forth. If the result contains a decimal, the number is rounded down to the nearest whole number if between .1 and .4, and rounded up if between .5 and .9.
In addition to the above, the Job Adjustment Phase caps at 10 battles, meaning any resulting value above that amount will be brought down to 10. The phase stacks, so the player who changes jobs while amid another adjustment phase will have the new amount on top of the one they are currently afflicted with, also up to a maximum of 10 battles.