Carpentry to 50, Got Wood?

crp-featured

In my journey to max out crafters, I started Carpentry at first to pickup the level 15 skill (Rumination), which is in fact quite awesome for when you’re at the end of a craft and have 100% quality, low CP, and some stacks of Inner Quiet left. All you have then is pop Rumination, and you’ll get about 45~55 CP back, which is enough to pop a Steady Hands and some Synthesis.

However, Carpentry has thus far been the most boring to max out, and I started running low on Leves near the last 15 levels, which mean I had to focus on a 3x turn-in one. Now, sure, it netted me 150k total per finishing, but it was really quite boring. The only saving grace was that once I hit 40+ it become really easy to HQ the weapon.

Like the other crafts I’ve maxed out, my goal in searching for leves were to find ones with either easy to HQ items, or items that didn’t have too many items in the recipe. However because I don’t have a Botanist at 40+, I had to buy all the mats I needed to level Carpentry up. This put a damper on my leve abuse, because while there were some that might have reworded more (there’s a 45 leve that with a HQ turn-in rewards 150k exp), the mats were either exceedingly expense, or too difficult to HQ without buying better gear.

While there are lower level leves, it’s often best to try to power through the first 20+ levels using your crafting log, or trying to HQ some lumber or what-have-you. Because I’m also a 50 GSM, I decided to utilize a level 20 leve for a few levels.

crp-leve-20 behind the mask

Lv20 – “Behind the Mask” 65k Exp / ~1.5k Gil

This leve was useful because I was able to HQ Lapis Luzili easily with my 50 GSM, which in turn made it easy for newbie Carpenter to HQ the Masks. The recipe for the mask wasn’t too bad either:

Ash Mask Recipe

Ash Mask Recipe

After a few levels of masks, I moved on to making some lumber, Walnut specifically, since the logs were quite cheap on my realm’s market. There was a leve at 25 that I used a few times as well, and as luck would have it it wanted Walnut Lumber!

CRP-25-Leve

“Armoires of the Rich and Famous” 5x Walnut Lumber, 100k Exp (3x Turn-In)

I milked this leve for awhile, far into the 30s, however I grew very tired of HQ’ing lumber — it’s a 40 durability recipe, and it’s very tedious. Especially when you need 15 HQ for this leve to get the most out of it. Eventually I moved on to a level 30 leve, and proceeded to make dozens of Walnut Macuahuitls*. The mats for there were easy enough to come by (Walnut Lumber) and Wyvern Obsidian — which luck has it, I was able to mine up my own HQ!. Note: If you’re going to HQ this recipe, place more weight on the Wyvern Obsidian, high quality versions contribute much more towards the quality then a HQ Walnut Lumber. While I required two Obsidians at lower levels to HQ these weapons, I was eventually able to move on to just needing 1.

*Walnut Macuahuitl is mispelled in the leve text.

"Knock on Wood", 75k

“Knock on Wood”, 75k, Turns in at Costa Del Sol

Walnut Macuahuitls are also a component of a level 35 leve that nets you about 174k exp, and 4500~ gil. That leve also happens to be the one I utilized the most, because I needed to conserve my leve allowance as I was starting to run low. However it was exceedingly boring. Luckily with the skills I picked up from GSM and Culinarian it wasn’t too difficult to HQ these weapons, however even using HQ base materials I still ran into trouble occasionally.

"Flintstone Flight" 174k Exp, 4500~ Gil.

“Flintstone Flight” 174k Exp, 4500~ Gil.

This is the leve I went to 50 on. It takes dozens of crafts, and once you hit 50 you’ll be so tired of stupid Walnut and stupid Wyvern Obsidian that you never want to see it again!

Thoughts and Ruminations

Get it? Ruminations?! Yeah, I know, that was weak.. So anyway Carpentry has so far been my least enjoyable Craft to max out, mostly because of my lack of a Botanist. I figure if I had leveled one I wouldn’t have been so bored. The other issue is that near the end of my leveling I had burned through a lot of my gil, even having to dip into my reserves. I was able to make a tiny amount back on mats I didn’t use but nothing to recover the amount I spent. At 50 I was able to make myself a couple of HQ GSM secondary weapons, so that was pretty cool.

Why did I suffer all the way to 50? Well Carpentry’s level 50 Cross-Crafter skill is “Byregot’s Blessing” which is amazing for HQing stuff, even 1 or 2 star items, it works in conjunction with Inner Quiet (just like Rumination does): For every “stack” of Inner Quiet, Byregot’s Blessing does 20% more quality (with a base of 100%). This means that utilizing the Hasty Touch method of quality increasing, you can get it pretty high. After 5+ quality increases, you combine Byregot’s with a Great Strides (and Innovation if you have it) and the quality just jumps forward, sometimes to max (get lucky and hit a Good status). And to be clear: Byregot’s consumes Inner Quiet, so make sure you have enough CP after using it to finish your recipe!

What’s my next craft? I’m leaning towards one that uses Miner mats, so either of the Smiths.

Themes, Themes Everywhere!

I’ve been playing around with a few themes lately, I had been using Swift but it was coded so rigidly that any changes messed it up. I really don’t want to spend my time basically recoding something from scratch, but at the same time I’d like to make it my “own”, you know? Well until I find a good one, I guess I’ll keep looking.

And, maybe it’s just me, but a lot of the styles out there (premium or not) seem to scream “BOOTSTRAP” at me (or any other popular framework). Don’t get me wrong, some of them are really really good, but I don’t want to look like yet another bootstrap site.

Also, apparently people who like dark designs are the minority now!

How To: Craft High Quality Stuff

Big-Cactuar

I thought I’d document a couple of the ways you can leverage cross-class abilities to almost always craft High Quality stuff. So right off the bat, the bare minimum you need for this is a Level 15 Culinarian for Hasty Touch (50% Success, 100% Quality, 0 CP), Higher Level Crafter (any) for Master’s Mend II (Recover 60 Durability, 160cp), and Level 15 Alchemist for Tricks of the Trade (restore 20  CP, only during “Good” status, 0CP, doesn’t effect durability).

A couple other notes: This method can be used for non-50 crafting, and even non-AF gear, but for the higher level recipes, especially any of the 1 or 2 star stuff, you really want to have the best gear you can get first, High Quality AF gear and Jewelry. Melding isn’t necessary, but it can help remove some of the RNG involved.

So here’s how this works, and it relies on Inner Quiet, Hasty Touch, and Tricks of the Trade, follow these steps:

  1. Inner Quiet
  2. Tricks of the Trade, if “Good” (Trumps everything else unless you’re at 100% Quality, or get an Excellent in which case Advanced Touch)
  3. Steady Hands (II, if you have it)
  4. Hasty Touch x5 (or until Steady Hands runs out)
  5. At 10-20 Durability, use Master’s Mend

Now you’re at 70 or 80 Durability and have nearly half or more quality filled, you have a couple of options here: Repeat steps 3 and 4 until 20-30 durability (depends if you can finish the craft in 1 or 2 durability) and then finish the craft (hopefully you’ll have hit 100% quality). The other option is to do something like Great Strides -> Steady Hands I -> Innovation (if you have it) -> Advanced Touch. That SHOULD get you 800-1000+ quality unless your Hasty Touches failed too many times. At that point you can then finish off the craft.

This method can be applied to 40 durability recipes, but relies on Manipulation (Goldsmith, 15). Follow the steps above, but use Manipulation at 20 durability (unless you get an Excellent). Please note: Manipulation used at 10 durability WILL BREAK if you try to use a skill that lowers durability when you’re at 10 durability. However the lucky thing is that you don’t NEED HQ mats like Ingots to achieve 100% quality, so these 40 durability recipes don’t necessarily need to be HQ’d.

For the record, I do something like the following (Even macro’d) when trying to HQ lower level recipes or 40 durability stuff:

  1. Great Strides
  2. Steady Hands I
  3. Innovation
  4. Advanced Touch
  5. Great Strides
  6. Advanced Touch

Then, depending on quality, I’ll use a 3rd Touch, then finish it. If I use a 3rd touch, and it’s 80%~ quality, I’ll use a mend and see if I can get it to 100%, but the goal here I’ve discovered is to finish the craft asap. I almost never use this method when I’m crafting intermediate mats at level 50, sometimes I’ll even use quick synth. But for leveling purposes this can be useful for the 40 durability recipes, though you’re unlikely to guarantee a HQ craft. THe goal while leveling is just to increase the quality a few times — you get 100-200% more experience for increasing the quality even a little bit!

Other Thoughts

This is the way that I do things, it’s not necessarily the best way. There are some very good cross-crafter skills available from those I’ve not leveled yet, such are Byregot’s Blessing (makes it easier to increase progress), there’s another that increases progress by a third, and then there are the “Brands”, but I’ve not leveled those crafts yet. I may revisit this topic in the future if I discover that any of those abilities I don’t have turn out to be useful.

Oh, I don’t have it yet, but there is an ability (Rumination, Carpenter Level 15) that can “eat” Inner Quiet stacks and return CP based on how many you had — this IS useful (And I’m definitely going to pick it up next). This ability is very useful after you’ve hit 100% quality, because at that point Inner Quiet becomes useless, your only goal at that point is to fill the progress up all the way — which for 1 or 2 star crafts can actually take 30-40 durability. That restored CP can help you use a mend (for more durability), or to use Standard Synth multiple times (which costs 15 cp).

So, how do you HQ stuff? Am I doing it wrong? Let me know in a comment!

Level 50 Culinarian: Where Did My Inventory Space Go?!

Culinarian - Apple Juice

CulinarianAfter I finished leveling my Miner to 50 (yes it took awhile, the last level I did Leves in Mor Dhona) and spending some time on my Goldsmith making some gear to sell on the Market, I decided to start another crafter. Originally I wasn’t going to touch Culinarian, but then I learned about two very useful skills you can pickup a long the way: Hasty Touch which is very useful as part of the Inner Quiet > Hasty Touch/Tricks of the Trade > Mend cycle that can help you HQ most higher durability items and Steady Hands II, which buffs Hasty Touch taking it from a 50% chance, to an 80% chance (Steady Hands I only buffs it to 70%) which further helps when HQing something.

A couple things to note about this DoH class: You will want to clear out at least 3 tabs of inventory, possibly more if you decide to go a different route than I did. Even when I tried to focus on items that took minimal mats to create, I would still end up almost maxing out my inventory. While  it’s a good rule of thumb to craft most stuff (at least below 30) at least once for the experience bonus, I would suggest avoiding that this time around, instead try to focus on 1-2 things and milk them for all you can.

I used Leves again and there were three, with the third one ending up making the last few levels go by really quickly. All leves are found in Limsa and are turned into an NPC near the Limsa Aetheryte Crystal.

"A Grape Idea" Grape Juicex1 HQ=18k

“A Grape Idea” Grape Juicex1 HQ=18k

This first leve is unlocked at level 20, it’s not that great but it’s useful for a few levels at least (or longer, depending on your access to mats). My goal with the leves was to hit the ones which required stuff with either the least number of mats, or stuff that was easier to HQ.

"True Grits" Cornmeal 6x HQx3 = 140k total

“True Grits” Cornmeal 6x HQx3 = 140k total

This second leve is unlocked at level 30, while you may not be able to jump on this one asap, I found that it wasn’t too difficult to HQ Cornmeal, but I had access to the Goldsmith cross class abilities, like Flawless Synthesis and Manipulation. This leve is very useful for a rather long time, however it does require a lot of crafting. This one IS a leve that allows you to “turn-in” 3 times, for a total of 140k~ experience (assuming everything is HQ). Not that if you do aim for this leve, you will be crafting a TON of cornmeal I ended up with something like 700 NQ cornmeal when I was finished with this leve.

"Made by Apple in Coerthas" Apple Juice x3, HQx3 = 270k total

“Made by Apple in Coerthas” Apple Juice x3, HQx3 = 270k total

The last leve I used is unlocked at 40, and I didn’t even notice it first, but on a whim I checked out the mats for Apple Juice (Juice tends to have 1-2 mats, which is what I was aiming at), and not only did it only have one mat (6x Mirror Apples), the Market had stacks and stacks of them both NQ and HQ. YMMV  though, and that did cost me a bit (I would estimate about 40k-50k spent on Mirror Apples). While it did take awhile to craft 9 HQ Apple Juices (this is a 3x turn-in leve!) the experience — and gil — was more than worth it. For reference, you get about 1000-1200 gil per turn in so over 3k for full HQ mats, which helps take the sting out a bit from the expensive HQ Mirror Apples.

Other Thoughts

So, like the title mentions, my inventory seemed incredibly small while leveling my culinary skills, there are very few items that take less then 5-6 different base items. The other issue was the number of stuff I had to run to the Market to acquire. I imagine this might be a bit alleviated for those who leveled a Botanist up, but personally my Miner is good enough for me. I can’t imagine leveling a second gatherer class, although I might take Botany to 20 for the wards.

Culinary Class quests were somewhat underwhelming, I loved the Goldsmith ones, but these ones just didn’t catch my attention. Though I didn’t originally plan to level a Culinarian, so that might be an extension of that. I do love the Culinary class gear, though I don’t currently have the gil to blow on it, heh.

Because I have access to a 50 Goldsmith and a large number of mats from leveling my mining, I was able to keep my Culinarian outfitted in HQ jewelry (and occasionally glasses) throughout the leveling process, this was extremely useful as you gain most of your CP off jewelry, I hit 250+ at a relatively low level and ended up at 310 at 49~50 which was very useful in HQing stuff. I’m actually quite happy that the crafter I chose first — goldsmith — has turned out to have amazing synergy with other crafters. From the skill “Flawless Synthesis” to “Manipulation”. My next crafter is likely going to be either a Weaver,  or possibly a Leatherworker — I’m aiming towards Weaver because I want to craft base sets of HQ crafting gear to make leveling future crafters easier. My end goal is to get one of every crafter to 50, because I’ve found them to oddly be fun.

DoW – I’ve discovered that, while I really enjoy the fighter classes, I absolutely cannot stand FATE grinding for very long, so it’s put a small damper on my plans to level up some casters — I really want to see what healing is like in this game, but FATE grinding is just so incredibly boring.

Mining, an exercise in patience

Moomba

To be honest, the only way to level mining, is patience. For those of you who are interested in using Leves to level your miner, I would suggest you try to mine normally as far as you can stand it, and then find the highest level Evaluation leve you can find, and repeat it until you’re out of allowances — for me, personally, I’ve decided to save my leves for more crafter classes.

What I do while mining, is watch netflix — I use a small program called “Always on Top”, think I got it from a Lifehacker article ages and ages ago. I load up a show in a browser window, and make sure it’s “on top”, and then go mine. That’s the secret, basically. I’m currently level 39, and just finished mining up my 1600th mythril ore chunk (I decided to stick around here since I can use mythri for goldsmith stuff).

Oh and don’t neglect your miner class quests! They come in every 5 levels, and you can gather the mats you need beforehand to speed it up a bit. Here’s a list of what you need for each one:

  • Level1 Latex (10)
  • Level 5 Bone Chip (50)
  • Level 10 Obsidian (99)
  • Level 15 High Quality Cinnabar (10)
  • Level 20 Grade 1 Carbonized Matter (99)
  • Level 25 High Quality Effervescent Water (15)
  • Level 30 High Quality Wyvern Obsidian (15)
  • Level 35 High Quality Raw Amethyst (20)
  • Level 40 High Quality Jade (20)
  • Level 45 High Quality Electrum Ore (20)
  • Level 50 Darksteel Ore (3)

Oh and if you’re interested in speeding up the process, there’s a few things you can do: For about 2300~ seals, your Grand Company offers an item that buffs experience from gathering by 50% for 3 hours, or until you’ve gained 40k bonus experience (personally I don’t see why it’s capped, since 35+ 40k is almost nothing). Also remember to buy some better gear every 5 levels or so, check out the “Merchant & Menders” for Fieldcraft gear, if you have the gil you might even check the Market for HQ versions (but remember you’ll be replacing the gear in 5~ levels anyway). When you keep your gear has high as possible, you keep the mining chances high as well, which means less misses. Also a high perception stat means a higher chance at High Quality, which doubles your experience for that hit.

For some minor bonus experience, do the provisioning mining mission from your Grand Company, and make sure to turn in HQ mats. That can net you a small, but decent, chunk of experience each day.

Tips and other thoughts

Don’t make the same mistake I did while gathering stuff around 25~30 — anything that can’t be HQ (such as crystals, pigment, etc…) will sink your experience per hour, while I did have a reason for farming some crystals (higher level goldsmith stuff), I farmed way too much pigment, if I could go bag I would’ve found wherever had a “raw something” and farmed it a ton instead.

Also, don’t feel like you have to move on once you’re 4+ levels about whatever it is you’re gathering, I’ve noticed that the experience gained from each successful gather doesn’t actually increase to a significant level (eg: moving on to gathering Jade at 37~ with it’s 70% chance, isn’t likely to net you more experience per hour than sticking to mythril or whatever). At the end of the day, Mining is a monotonous thing to level, you’re really only going to do so by running being 3 nodes for hours on end, only to eventually move on to something else.

Nodes: Make sure you pay attention to node placement, try to keep your route efficient — some nodes might spawn near hostile enemies, but luckily you can effectively “ignore” one node, and make a route of the other 3 (for instance, the nodes near Highbridge, or the ones in Nine Ivies). Even better is if you can keep the nodes that have a better chance to gather, higher chance at HQ, or a bonus gather attempt as your three.

Market! Don’t ignore the Market completely. You can make some gil off certain mats, you might even consider things like selling the mats needed for Mining class quests (stacks of 10 High Quality Cinnabar for instance). Although if you’re really interested in Gil more than leveling, check your market for Shards, and go farm whatever is worth more/has less selling currently. For my realm I see a lot of stacks of shards in the 500+ range, while there might be some crafters who might purchase that much, on average most people will be after stacks of a 100-200. And shards will go FAST like this. Almost without question after listing a stack of 100 shards, it will be sold almost before I leave the retainer bell.

Oh and I’ll let you in on a little secret: I’ve made more gil on the market by listing things individually, than I have in stacks of 20+ because sometimes people just need 1 or 2 of an item — in fact you can even charge a bit more for the mat because almost no one else lists things in stacks of 1. Ingots are great for this, I’ve discovered. Especially HQ ones.