Crafting and me always had a weird relation when it comes to MMO. Back when I started playing WoW seriously I was all about crafting and I would hunt down every single recipe. I spent hours farming Azshara giants so I could complete my StormShroud set even though I didn’t really need to craft it. I wanted to be able to craft it all whenever someone needed something and I took pride in that.
But as I started raiding more seriously and getting into the “proper” endgame, I found out that crafting was more often than not a waste of time and effort compared to the other more productive activities I could do to improve my gear. Sure you needed enchants and potions it was often more efficient to grind money and pay for those services rather than going after them yourself. Of course, having maxed profession was often useful for one specific item or improvement but beyond those very specific items, no real need to do it. My stance toward crafting changed, get it to max level, get the special improvement, move on to better uses of precious time.
Other MMOs seemed to follow the same pattern of crafting and I discounted it as a side activity that required too much time for too little reward. It doesn’t help that most MMOs also have pretty boring crafting systems, gather mats, press button, obtain item. So with FF14 I did the exact same thing I did before, ignore crafting, level to max and go grind dungeon and raids for gear which has worked out pretty good so far.
But as I was doing my Zodiac weapon chain I came in contact with the crafting world a few times. I needed material melded, I needed crafted items and I needed to sell stuff to crafters so I could make money. Altough I didn’t quite understand all that I was reading in guides at the time, I got a glimpse of high level crafting in FF14 and got the impression that it had its own endgame with special unlocks, 4 stars crafters and quite a bit of mystery about crafting rotations of all things.
These past few weeks as I was getting close to finishing my zodiac I started looking at those 8 crafting classes I had on my character sheet and wondering what it would take to level them before the expansion hit. I knew that crafting in FF14 is like another whole game, complete with gear, achievements, quests, skills and rotations. That high end crafters can make tons of money and have the same amount of respect we give people who have cleared all the raids on hard mode. It got me curious.
So yesterday with nothing much better to do I figured I’d dip my toe to see how things would go and I found myself very quickly get suckered in. I started with Weaver and saw that to make pants I’d need linen which is made from grass that botanist gather. So off to become a botanist to gather grass. Then I needed leather so I also took up leatherworking and used up the animal skins I had gathered so long ago. But I saw that leatherworking could make belts which my weaver could use so I wanted that but it required a bronze ingot so miner and goldsmith got added and down goes the rabbit hole.
This morning I checked a crafting guide which went into a bit of detail and I realized just how deep the hole goes, a black abyss from which there is no return and I’m standing right on the edge. Do I dive in, forget reason and see what happens? I’m very tempted to do so but it all seems so insane…