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.

The abyss

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…

Finally, at last, it happened! After farming for about a solid 3 months, I now have my Nirvana Zeta and thus, have finished the Zodiac weapon from FF14. Well, until the expansion that is. With that goal achieved I only have Bahamut coils left to clear and that is one goal I’m not sure if I’ll try pursuing at the moment. If realistically I want to finish before the expansion hit I would have to do it through pugs and I’m not sure that will happen.

But back to the zodiac weapon. I honestly did not think I had it in me to finish this kind of grind anymore. The only thing comparable I can think of was the farming of the 0.5 armor tier back in Vanilla WoW and I didn’t manage to clear that one. Somehow, FF14 managed the impossible and kept me interested enough to get me through all of it even though the last part proved to be pretty tedious despite being the shortest. Words fail me to describe the feeling of accomplishment I felt when my character raised the finished weapon with the classic victory fanfare playing along.

So now that I’m done with most of my goals for the expansion with still two months to go I’m wondering what I should set my sights on. Finish the first part of the relic weapon and getting quelling strikes for my black mage seems like the obvious, smart thing to do and I’ll probably work on getting that done. I could also throw myself at coils until it works but I’m less enthused about that prospect. I’d rather work on getting our static off the ground and in good position rather than banging my head against a wall with pugs as far as raiding goes.

The other option would be to start crafting. A scary prospect to be sure since it looks like another game all in itself but with guild crafting on the horizon I’d like to be able to help out. Or I could just wing it and do whatever crazy idea pops in my head.

Earlier this week myself and members of Grey Sky got to go play in Bahamut Coil Turn 5, home of the dreaded Twintania as part of our effort to get a second Static going in the guild. I consider Twintania to be part of a very select group of bosses that throne at the very top of the current FF14 endgame content. Even if you outgear her, she can still decimate your group in a few seconds and demand everyone to be on their game.

The best part, she’s a proper Internet dragon, or wyvern if you want to get technical but I won’t hold it against her. Today I want to talk about FF14 internet dragons and how awesome they are. After all, there’s been a serious lack of proper Internet dragons in some other games that will remain nameless as of late so I figured I should share with everyone those of FF14, a game that does justice to some great proper internet dragons.



Our first dragon greets adventurer at  level 32 as the end boss of Brayflox Longstop, the first post 30 dungeon of the game. Brayflox is the first dungeon where players should have their advanced class (job) and where the game start asking more out of the players than just simple tank and spank.

As a green dragon, Aiatar love poison and his mechanics are based around it. He will breathe poison and throw poison on the ground in addition to his standard dragon attacks. That poison will stack on party member and in addition to taking more ticking damage as the stacks increase, you also take more damage from his other standard attacks the more stacks you have. It can spiral out of control very fast.

He might not be the strongest dragon in the game, but Aitar has been wiping parties that love to stand in bad since launch. Aiatar teaches the very important, don’t stand in bad, lesson early in the game and we love him for it.



The next dragon waits for us in Stone Vigil,a level 41 dungeon. Isgebind is all about ice and huge AoEs and will spend the fight covering the ground in massive sheets of ice that will crush parties that haven’t learned positioning yet. And just for giggles he’ll throw balls that paralyze players so they can get caught in all the juicy AoE.

Isgebind teaches parties about the importance of being well positioned during a fight so you have a chance to dodge whatever is to come. He also teaches about learning fight sequences for the very same reasons. He’s a pretty awesome dragon when you think about it with all the teaching he’s doing. Should you fail the lesson however you will die a quick frozen death.



Enough with the teaching dragons, let’s get to the guild destroyers. While technically a Wyvern, Twintania earns her spot as an internet dragon for the sheer amount of broken dreams that she causes. For a while she was the ultimate endgame boss and quite a few statics and even guilds have died to her due to being unable to beat her. Even today, when we outgear her, she can still annihilate you for messing up even just a tiny bit.

Twintania is a multiphase encounter, with each step adding new and different mechanics that if not handle will result in a wipe. She has adds, stuff to dodge, adds that need to be stunned before they touch someone, deadly twisters, divebombs, fire, tank buster abilities and likely a kitchen sink somewhere.

If you want to know if someone in your guild is ready for the big times raiding, take them to Twintania and see how it goes. She will test you like no other boss before her.



Midgardsomr is a bit of a special entry in this list because he’s technically dead when you face him but being dead is obviously not a big deal for the father of all dragons so he’ll play some with you with the power of his mind and resurrecting a few dead dragons that happened to be nearby.

Standing as the boss of Keeper of the lake dungeon, Midgardsormr is not the hardest dragon on this list and he can be rather easy or hard depending on your party composition. If you have a group of people who can dodge multiple AoEs while dealing good damage and handling other positioning mechanics then you should be mostly fine.

If not then you’re in a special hell from which there is no escape. I wish you the best.


This dragon is protecting the spoilers

You know you’re dealing with a bad ass dragon when he won’t even acknowledge your existence. Vishap has one and only one goal, break down the barriers standing between him and Ishgard and you’ll have to find a way to stop him.

The Vishap fight is likely one of the best “let’s fight a giant monster” fight I’ve seen in an MMO in a long time. You get to deal with adds while trying to not get stomped to death, you have to run up towers and use harpoons, deploy traps, use cannons and whatever else you can think off to stop this force of nature.

Now if only we could get giant robots to punch him in the face, it would be the perfect fight in the history of ever.

Bahamut Prime


The very last boss of FF14, A Realm Reborn, who else but Bahamut could it be. I have not yet had the honor of facing him in combat, but with abilities like Mega-flare and Giga-flare, you know it’s going to be super happy fun times. Just reading the strategy guide is enough to give me nightmares and I can’t wait to get there.

If you ever played any Final Fantasy games, Bahamut is likely to have started your obsession with Internet dragons and to finally face him is just so great. Thank you Square Enix for giving me a chance to get my face melted by Bahamut himself.

FF14 monday: Nirvana!

Hello all!

At last, real life is letting me do an update as planned on Monday and I’m pretty excited about this one. I finally have managed to get my zodiac weapon. No it’s not Zeta yet but the worst is over and I now possess Nirvana for my white mage after many weeks of grinding and prayer to Rngesus (blessed be his name).

After a grand total of 73 dungeon runs, the last piece I needed for my weapon dropped yesterday and I’m now done with Rng. I still have to attune 12 pieces of Mahatma to my weapon but I did the first one yesterday without much effort so I’m pretty confident I’ll be done by next week. So a big part of that goal is done!

Hard mode static

I mentioned a while back that I started a hardmode Static in Greysky Armada for those who wanted to clear the harder content once the expansion hits. Since I know these things do not happen overnight I’ve been slowly building the team and we’re now 4 out of 8 regulars and have been starting making attempts at some of the current endgame content. We’ve defeated Garuda extreme and we’ve started working on Coils turn 5. We haven’t cleared it yet but I’m confident that’s not far off and considering that it is one of the hardest fights in the game, I’m pretty happy with our progress so far.

One of the features that get often praised about FF14 is the clever social engineering that gets people running older dungeons over and over again. There’s roulettes to complete for tomes, pets, cards and Zodiac weapon drops to get just to name a few. The veterans get something out of the experience, the new players get to run stuff and it adds diversity to endgame content.  One of the key elements of this feature is to sync levels and items to certain ranges just to make sure that you still have to pay attention to mechanics. It’s simply a great system.

Today I saw this post from Blizzard announcing Timewalk which will be Blizzard version of dungeon syncing. Your level and gear get scaled down to whatever is appropriate for the dungeon and off you go! At first I thought they were stealing FF14 system but then I realized it’s only a weekend event that will net you some cosmetic gear. I’m quite puzzled by this move.

New players not included

Right off the bat the first thing that strikes me is that in order to be eligible for Timewalk you have to be of a higher level than what the content was originally intended for. For BC content which was level 70 you have to be 71+. This means that new players coming up the levels won’t be included in the runs. Sure they can go at 71 and still benefit some but by that point they are in Wotlk content and might just want to continue leveling that way instead of running old dungeon for cosmetic rewards.

The strength of the FF sync systems is that it populates the lower levels with veterans who have multiple, meaningful incentives to run the old content. They might be grinding their legendary weapon, gearing tokens for high level gear. Being paired with newer players will even grant them a bonus which encourages the vets to take the newbies under their wing. Sure there’s also cosmetic incentives here too but I find that character progress remains the stronger motivator.

And on the new player side they get to have people to run dungeons with, to show them the rope and get integrated in the community before they reach max level.

WoW system on the hand feels made for players already at endgame who just want to get a few transmog items and maybe a token or two. The new player, which is the point of the whole system, gets left behind.

Weekends only

The other big surprise is that Timewalking will only be available certain weekends. Why would you allow access only during certain weekends and create pressure on the players to play at these specifics time. With only marginal incentives (cosmetic and a few tokens) I don’t think the pull will be strong enough to get players to subscribe only for that. I think that it might just become a source of frustration for people who might not have time to play during the specific time slots.

So why gate it that way? I really don’t get the reasoning here.


So really… why Blizzard? Why would you not take the opportunity of Timewalking to bring players of various levels together ? FF14 did it and it’s a resounding success so why not just steal that idea like you usually do? Nostalgia alone won’t revive the old dungeons so why?? What are you thinking?

The quest for the Zodiac weapon goes on and now that I can see the light at the end of the tunnel it seems to get ever farther. Currently I am missing exactly 6 items drops from various endgame dungeons and nothing else. I’ve already gathered all the seals, the tomes and crafting items I’ll need. I’ve been grinding hard for the drop but the progress feels slow. Between now and last week I managed to snag 6 drops so there is progress at least.

I’ve been keeping track of my runs and here are the results

  • Wanderer Palace: 4
  • Copperbell Mines HM: 8*
  • Aurum Vale: 6
  • Hullbreaker: 0*
  • Haukke Manor HM: 1
  • The Lost city of Amdapor: 3
  • Dzemael Darkhold: 2
  • Brayflox HM: 1
  • Amdapor Keep: 2
  • Snowcloak: 1
  • Qarn HM: 0*
  • Pharos Sirius: 5
  • Sastasha HM: 7*
  • Tam-Tara HM: 8*
  • Stone Vigil HM: 0*
  • Halatali HM: 5

Total 53 and counting. * are ongoing

A few people have been keeping track of their drops rates and most of them seem to end up between 45 and 85 runs totals with a drop percentage of about 25% if you average. So far I seem to be heading right for those numbers even if my drop rate is a bit lower (20%). In any case, I’m moving closer to my zodiac weapon and I just can’t wait.

*Warning* *Sirens* *Loud noises*

Today’s post is spoilertastic!!!! If you don’t want to read about the end of Realm Reborn storyline then I suggest you do not go past the huge dragon! You have been warned.

This dragon is protecting the spoilers

This dragon is protecting the spoilers

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