The world of Vana'diel is rich with unique weapons, armor, magics, and foods, and all of these items spawn not just from the looting of the monsters, but virtually all can be touched or made by the hands of crafters. Using magical crystals, experienced crafters are able to bend the materials found throughout the world to their wills to create new and exciting mixtures, powerful and impacting equipment. Different items are reflective of different schools of crafting, from the arrows and furniture made by Carpenters to the weapons and armors of a Blacksmith, and the culinary delights of a Culinarian to the potions and poisons of the Alchemist. Contained herein is a compilation of the recipes for the different items and listings for skill level difficulties and the heirarchy of the craft guilds. There are, however, a few nuances to crafting that deserve a little discussion of their own.
The first is understanding skill level requirements and support. In recipes, the skill levels listed on the charts reflect the point at which a crafter may no longer gain skill from making the item. By this point the crafter has progressed to the point of making items more difficult in nature, but on the flip side once a crafter has reached this point, there is a possibility for exceptional success. This means the recipe may produce a bonus yield, sometimes doubling, tripling, or in some cases quadrupling the yield. In other such cases the recipe may produce an exceptional quality item, which would have better defense ratings, weapon speed and attack power, or many other types of attribute, elemental defense, or other hidden abilities. For the point of skill gain, a crafter is able to create the item and gain skill points up to ten skill points below that number. This means that though the margin for success is slim, a crafter can create the item if his skill level is up to ten below, but skill points are awarded most commonly on a success, so rarely does the expense justify crafting the item that low in skill.
However, in each major guild hall, there are craftsmen that will offer Image Sythesis Support. Most guild support NPCs only offer a minute or two worth of support, and the skill bonus to assist the crafter is marginal. There is, however, one support NPC at each major guild hall that will offer Advanced Image Synthesis Support. These individuals charge the crafter for their support, tithing 30 gil per skill rank. The price is fairly nominal, however, as the support they offer is better on average than the temporary support that the other NPCs offer, plus the Advanced Support last for 15 minutes. Image Synthesis Support of all sorts assists the player greatly in success, and since success awards the crafter with skill gain more often, the crafter usually should have support when crafting for skill gain. Also note that as a crafter increases in skill level, failures become less frequent, but also exceptional successes become more frequent. For that reason, when crafting items for use, sale, or special purpose, it is also ideal to have what bonus the Support NPCs have to offer. Also, once a crafter reaches level 68 in a craft skill, the crafter may purchase furniture which enhances success at crafting. Please see the Trader's guild section for more details.
Of the crafting skills, a player may join all guilds during the course of play, and it is actually encouraged to level all craft skills together. Some recipes require skill in secondary crafts, such as some weapons which are made by blacksmith skill, but might require support from boneworking, leathercraft, goldsmith, or even carpentry. When a secondary craft skill is listed, the crafter must have at least that amount listed in the secondary craft or the crafting will automatically fail. No skill gains are available for secondary skills when crafting an item that uses one.
As a crafter gains skill points in a craft, they will eventually reach a point where the skill is capped. The skill is capped every ten points of skill, such as 10, 20, 30, 40, etc. At that point the crafter must go to the crafting guild in question and test for rank. The player may actually test for skill rank 2 skill levels before each cap, meaning they may take the rank test at skill levels 8, 18, 28, 38, etc. The crafter will be asked to craft an item, which reflects the difficulty of the current level. Whether this is found, bought, or crafted makes no difference, once it is traded to the Guild Master NPC, the player is awarded an advancing rank and the skill cap is raised to the next level. In essence, what this means is no player may have more than a skill level of 10 in each craft before they must join the guild and take the guild test to advance further.
Regarding Synthesis, or 'Synths', crafters will want to take note that crafting is most profitable when a crafter acquires the ingredients for their recipes themselves. While there is some occasion where the materials may be bought cheaper than the cost of the end product, usually a crafter will find that crafting in general, but more so in the case of crafting for skill gain, that knowing the Harvesting tables and the monsters which drop craft ingredient as loot is very important. It would seem that in most cases that crafting was introduced into Final Fantasy as an activity, not as an occupation. Also, crafter's should make themselves familiar with the best places to obtain crystals and clusters, as crystals can easily become a great expense over the course of crafting.
Regarding Item Desynthesis, or 'Desynth', a large majority of the items crafted by player or beast can be desynthesized. Desynthesis it the act of taking a crystal, usually Lightning, entering the item as the only ingredient in the recipe, and using a craft to 'split' some of the ingredient back out of the item. An example would be to take bronze mittens, use a Lightning crystal to split them and retrieve either bronze ingots or sheep leather out. The item is detroyed in the process, and if successful the crafter will obtain between 1/3 to 100% of a single type of ingredient. That is to say a crafter can not get two different types of ingredient returned, regardless of how many ingredients are used in crafting, and of that one ingredient the crafter may get between 1/3 to full return of that specific ingredient. Desynth is much more difficult than standard crafting, however, but if the crafter is within the skill point range to gain off of crafting the item, then the crafter may also gain off of desynthing the item. A crafter which enjoys or uses desynthesis often may want to examine the furniture section, as there are some furnitures which offer Item Desynthesis as a moghancement, which will improve the chances of success.
Also in each major guild are NPCs from the Traders Guild. These NPCs offer guild specific and craft specific items, furniture, and equipment, which can change the context of a craftsman's job considerably. A player may only be a member to one Trader's Guild at a time. The Trader's Guild is a system where the crafter will be asked to make a specific item, which is based on the crafter's current level of ability. The specific item is traded to the Trader's Guild NPC, as many as possible within ~24 days of Vanadiel (24 hours real time). When the item requested is turned into the Trader's Guild NPC, they are exchange for points in the guild, which can them be exchange for items and equipment specific to the craft in question. However, there is a limit to the number of points allowed to be attained per cycle. For instance, if the Trader's Guild at the Carpenter's Guild is selected, then the NPC might ask for an Ash Club (or another skill level appropriate item). The player trades as many Ash Clubs to the NPC as possible, and then points are attained for them. The point cap for the item may be 1280, meaning the player trades as many Ash Clubs as possible, each earning points, but the player may not recieve more than 1280 accumulative points until after the cycle ends and the Trader's Guild has changed the item requested. Please note all Trader's Guilds require at least a Novice rank in the guild to join, which is a skill of 28 or more.
These Trader's Guild points accumulate, and at certain levels of skill, the crafter may exchange these points for special crystals which allowed the crafter to add their name the the items they craft, or at high levels of points and skill, may buy equipment and special skills which assists with bonuses to their craft skill. Points accumulated are only with the Trader's Guild NPC currently quested, they can not be exchanged at any other Guild. Also, since only one Trader's Guild may be active at one time, if the player wishes to change the craft in which the Trader's Guild is active, then the Trader's Guild closes out the trade contract currently active and any points earned to that point and not spent are lost. This means if you have a Carpenter Guild Trader active with 30,000 unspent points, and you activate the Alchemist Guild Trader, then the Carpenter Guild trader becomes unavailable and the 30,000 points are lost forever even if the player re-instates the Carpenter Guild trader.
Of the items available from the Trader's Guild, items which boost a player's crafting skill are described in more detail in the craft recipe pages. The crystals available, however, are available at all of the Trader's Guilds except the Fisherman's Guild. The Arcane Crystals work exactly the same as regular crystals used in crafting, but with one exception. When a crafter uses these crystals to craft and successfully crafts an item, the crafter's name will be added to the notes section of the item description. This in essence allows a crafter to 'signature' the equipment made for others. This signature remains with the item even if traded or sold, but will be lost if the item is purchased in the Auction House. That is to say the item will retain the signature if placed in the Auction House, but once purchased by another player, will not retain the signature. The following is a listed of the Arcane Crystals and the element crystal they correspond to.
In addition to the crafting scale, many people conjecture that celestial alignment affects crafting. That is to say, some people feel the direction you face when crafting effects chances of success and quality. In order to be fair to that belief, below chart is included as a guideline to stance. Though no information to date confirms this chart, most crafter swear by it enough that most crafters should at least know about the celestial alignment stance.
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