This morning I got my 500th player commendation. I’ve kept the Battle Mentor requirements in the back of my head and knew it would be impossible to get there until Endwalker launches, but I have all the quests (1 each of Tank, Healer, DPS), 500 of 1500 commendations and 590ish of 1000 instances down, so it’s more than 1/3 but not yet 50% done. Not that I’m working towards this goal, but I’ve found it a good benchmark to measure your experience against.
When Endwalker releases this will almost surely be bumped up again, so you need to finish some max-level quests – either role-based again with 3 of 4 role quests needed like now or like it used to be in Stormblood and earlier (afaik), where you needed to e.g. finish the 70 WAR/WHM/BRD quests if you played my main classes.
My plans seem to have changed a bit since I wrote about hitting 80 on Dancer last week, as I did start to level all the jobs I hadn’t started, at least for a bit:
So Paladin is moving towards 70 with daily MSQ when I feel like it and Kojin/Ananta dailies when I have spares. Red Mage is working on Vanu/Vath rep. Scholar/Astrologian got a few dungeons in, mostly Leveling roulette and then whatever is the highest available dungeon. Machinist is doing the Pixie dailies and Alliance Roulette, Summoner is getting cheated by Scholar, as usual. Pugilist and Lancer are doing some dungeons, and finally I’m doing the Hunting Log on all the lowbie classes.
The “plan” is to get everything that is below 50 to 50, mostly to be able to get rid of all the gear and because I was actually nosy how they play. When that is done I will unlock Samurai as well, then it’s back to focusing on the higher jobs. Prio right now are Machinist and Paladin.
Also the mount farming went well, but we spent quite a few hours:
After our 50 odd kills to get everyone the Suzaku wolf we went to Tsukoyomi today and were kinda lucky, after 6 runs we had the few missing ones. Then we went to Lakshmi, where 13 runs where enough, then off to Susano, with 8 kills for the missing ones, and then to Shinryu where we didn’t get a single mount drop in 12 kills, so that will be interesting.
As I wrote I was talked into farming the Wolf pets from Extreme trials and we managed to get a few tries in while learning (it’s fascinating that you still need a few tries for a 70 trial even on unsynced 80 chars, but we weren’t a full party). The first 3 kills yielded 1 flute. Last night we actually did around 4 hours and I’m sitting at 35 Suzaku Totems, which means we did 32 runs last night, I guess. We were 7 people and we’re at 5 flutes, so just 2 people missing. If the drop rate continues like this, that could be another 14 runs, but we’re hoping it’s less.
Anyway, the fight is pretty fun, and we can do it in 4:40 to 4:50 most of the time now. Sure, sometimes someone messes up and dies, but for the most part it’s a simple dance that you learned. The others already got their Tsukuyomi drop but we’ll probably do a few more runs to get us 2-3 latecomers the mounts.
I’ve now also done the 3 NieR raids. They’re… interesting. And weird. Not bad, but if this was a normal fantasy MMO they’d look very much out of place, but it doesn’t seem to be too weird in a Final Fantasy game.
I managed to get to 80 on Dancer, that makes 4 jobs, and I’m focusing on Machinist, Paladin and Red Mage now, although not sure I can really call it focus for the latter two. Playing them, ok. Also trying to do some healing on Scholar, but mostly just the Leveling dungeon roulette. I’ve been diligently handing in my Wondrous Tails diaries and bought some Level 80 gear upgrades.
Also the people I’m running with are planning to do a more casual raid static in Endwalker and I might join. I’m not sure yet if on Bard or Warrior, but as much as I like having one character, in a funny twist currently it’s actually easier for me in WoW to switch between DPS and Tank than it is in FFXIV.
In WoW, my DPS gear is iLvl 236 and my Tank gear is iLvl 233, the major difference is the iLvl of the Legendary, 262 vs 235, most of the slots are shared, only MH+OH are different of course, and a few pieces (rings, trinkets) where I have better defensive stats on them, but I did tank Heroic SoD (and Nathria before) just fine with my DPS gear + 2 mandatory pieces changed + nice to have Legendary changed.
In FFXIV, my iLvl on Bard is 496 now, and Warrior is only on 456 – they don’t share a single piece of equipment (as you hit 80 you may still have the same earring). So in Endwalker that will mean leveling and gearing up 2 classes on their own.
We’ll see. Bard is fun, but I’ve seen my first parse from one of the NieR raids – 3 grey and 1 green. Not that I would’ve expected a lot more when I didn’t know the fights and just got some pointers via voice midfight, and died a few times, of course.
Yesterday I got roped into grinding Hell’s Lid for a bit to get someone their last drops for the Resistance Weapon upgrade (I think) but it was an awesome way to practice WHM healing and in the end I managed to ding 80 as well (after they helped me get the Four Lords quest line done). I might have been conscripted to Hells’ Kier Extreme now, but as they’d already wiped for a bit I’m kinda excited to do something that doesn’t simply fall over when you look at it the wrong way.
Also the plague has hit me (no, not the bad one, just the normal one) and so I piddled around a bit in the evening and this morning and finished all 8 Level 50 crafting job quests instead of doing something that needs attention, reflexes, or a clear head. So I don’t exactly know how much is missing, but boy do these take a while if you do 16-18 quests. Maybe I should’ve done them before I sold off all my spare mats. But I don’t think it cost me that much. Still a bit of Gil wasted. Guess I’ll do the full round until Level 60 then in one sitting another time.
And I finally finished the Shadowbringers MSQ, so technically I am ready now for Endwalker. I have a Tank, a DPS, and a Healer job at 80, all three have their basic Resistance Weapon, the MSQ is done. Everything else now are just personal goals that are nice to have. Well, except a good White Mage glamour, that’s prio #1 now.
Had a little discussion on Twitter lately and maybe it’s time that I write down the things that annoy me with FFXIV, as of course not everything can be great. I guess all my posts in the last two months were mostly positive and showed how much I like the game, so here’s a bit of the other side.
First of all, I’m 78.8 ish on White Mage and I don’t see any feasible way to level quickly now until I can do MSQ duty roulette again tomorrow. I guess I could manage the 3 Pixie dailies as well, been doing them on Dancer at the moment. I also did my dungeon “Leveling” roulette today, but there’s no real way to do anything but heal dungeons. Not even for a missing 20%. Mayyybeee FATE spam, but even those are hard to solo. Why o why do those damn side quests not give at least “ok” XP, I’m not even saying they should be good XP. Just enough to be worth doing. But the same is really true for Dancer. I seem incapable of finding activities I like that get me some XP. I don’t like PotD/HoH, I don’t want to spam dungeons. I like dailies, but there are never enough for a given level range, etc.pp.
While I am a fan of the Armoury Chest, it drives me nuts that I can’t filter in there and of course there’s not enough space to separate stuff in the four courners or whatever. I am honestly so annoyed right now, if this was WoW, I’d be writing an addon this weekend to just finally solve this problem.
If there’s a way to cancel a cutscene and be able to restart from the beginning, I’ve not found it (mostly when getting a pop). So either it’s not there or it’s one of those undiscoverable things.
Many people are saying they like how it encourages people to do old content, for example with poetics. But from the other perspective, why is it worth to me running the MSQ duty roulette every day, but only on the role that has the benefit. On my data center it’s feasible to check it every few minutes while playing and always queue as tank or healer, depending on the bonus. So much that it feels not worth doing it with the wrong role, and basically never as a DPS. I could use some variety here.
I’ve had a lot of fun healing for the first 70 or so levels, but the meta seems to have changed and the higher towards “current” content you get, the more tanks are doing the wall-to-wall pulls. Yes, even the tanks you have to absolutely spam heal. Not sure who like this, but it’s completely not enjoyable for me. Also you don’t actually learn to heal because I hardly can use a variety of spells or even dare to try to use them. I need to use the 5 buttons that I know will keep the tank alive, no clue if it’s optimal. No chance to learn, just run and spam. I’d actually say for me there’s currently no middle ground between “terribly boring” and “painfully difficult”. Maybe the only way is to read up more and talk to a White Mage main, but learning by doing with medium difficulty? I don’t see how.
The ingame map. Why does it have to be so horrible? Again, I don’t love the WoW map, but would it have been so difficult to let me zoom out three times via right click? Zooming in via left click works! And I get that not all major zones are connected, but why do I have to select Norvrandt or Othard from the menu every day? Why could I click on the Yanxia map to get to the Doman Enclave a while ago and now I have to use the Teleport menu?
Why are the Gathering Job Quests so horribly boring? Port around 5 times, then collect 10 of some HQ materials. Some are more terrible than others, but only the first one or two were “good” in a sense that they were at least new?
Why is it so hard to deglamour a piece of equipment?
Why am I a Storm Captain of the Maelstrom and the highest 8 ranks have never been put ingame, but also not removed from the GC ranks tab?
So yes, a lot boils down to maybe being spoiled by switching specs and being able to get some XP on Healers and Tank as DPS, like in WoW. But I sometimes like to do solo stuff and still progress. And yes, the last few points were a bit petty, but I didn’t even have to think hard about any of this.
Maybe I shouldn’t be comparing all the things to WoW, because overall I think the systems are implemented in a better way and WoW has structural problems, while FFXIV mostly has annoyances and systems that are badly explained. But many of WoW’s small annoyances can be fixed with addons.
And yes, overall I’m still pretty happy. I think I have one thing to finish for the last quest of Shadowbringers’ 5.55 patch, I’m very close to 3 jobs at 80, I am 90% ready for Endwalker and looking forward. But some things could be so much better, especially if you want to level in bursts and not trickling every day. WoW may waste a lot of my time, but I have the feeling I can optimize a few things a lot better.
After finally finishing the Ivalice raids (not a huge fan of the story, we’ll see on repeat clears about the raids themselves, but wasn’t impressed so far) I went to unlock Bozja and got my first Resistance weapon, the 485 bow Brilliance.
Then I actually had enough Poetics left to also grab the 485 Axe, Skullrender.
White Mage is very close to 77 and Dancer is nearly 76 so I guess I can start buying mats for those 2 as well. It’s nice that you can get those so easily, even if they are “only” 485 iLvl.
Thursday saw quite a bit of progress. After doing my duty roulettes on Warrior there was just a little bit missing so I spammed some FATEs (for some reason on my server Il Mheg is really good for this and no one does them in e.g. Lakeland) and got to 80.
Then I finally unlocked the Wondrous Tails and was a bit dumbfounded by the activities I should do. The 4 dungeons shouldn’t be a problem, but the rest were mostly Alliance Raids (of which I’d never done a single one) and Extreme Trials (which I had never done and not even unlocked most of them), so I set out to do some quest collecting. I had heard that you should be able to solo some of them so I tried just that. First was Shiva, where I even had the quest already (since 2019, actually). Killed her on the second try (80 Warrior with iLvl 406) and got a pony, yay. Then I went to Good King Moggle Mog, first try. Then I learned that the duty finder resets your “undersized party” setting if you disconnect, so I found myself in a Garuda Extreme party with 6 sprouts and one experienced tank. I told them I had misqueued but might as well try it. The other tank gave us instructions and we were successful after one wipe. Nice. Then I either needed Titan or was just curious, and it was unlocked after Garuda anyway. That one took three tries to get the positioning right, but there was another pony. So maybe it’s worth trying to get all the mounts now, if they’re soloable that easily.
I also need Ravana EX, but as it’s a Level 60 trial the guide suggested an iLvl of 460+, so I’m not sure I should try that already and I guess I’ll go for Alliance Raids on the weekend then, because I really want to finish this Wondrous Tails thing, preferably with 2 lines.
So overall I’m still confused in this game how some things seem to go so fast and some go so, so slow. Machinist from ~53 to 61 was quite a slog. Dancer from 60 to 70 felt so much quicker. MSQ is really fast, but why can’t I do the whole post-expansion stuff on a 79 job to not waste the XP? Meh.
Friday didn’t bring much, except Thaumaturge to 30 and starting Rogue, my first melee DPS class.
Today I queued for the Alliance Raid Duty Finder and again was very lucky, Labyrinth of the Ancients, so that’s two birds with one stone (actually three, Shadowbringers MSQ, Wondrous Tails, and bonus EXP for White Mage). Then I continued on through Cyrcus Tower and won Amon’s Coat, nice. Those two were near instant pops, World of Darkness took quite a while but again, no wipes or problems. Then on to Ramuh Extreme, 2 tries, no pony. Then Ifrit, first try, pony. Then Leviathan, 2 tries, no pony.
I “finished” the Dwarf and Pixie Beast Tribe quests insofar as I reached Sworn and got the mounts, we’ll see if if there’s any benefit in continuing.
Yesterday was the weekly reset and so I managed to get a few more Custom Deliveries in and this is the result:
Now I simply need to catch up 40 levels of job quests for the left side and 30 levels for the right side. Easy… Apparently I can get White Crafters Scrip for Deliveries at 80, which is good because I had no clue how to get better gear there. I’m going for a generic set for all jobs instead of weapons or specialized stuff. We’ll see if that works out until Endwalker, so I’d be prepared a bit better. No huge plans, but I’d prefer to have 80 gear and not 70 gear for leveling them up to 90.
For my battle jobs there were a few small milestones, Dancer is 70, Machinist and Dark Knight are 60, but I continued the quest for cleaning up my inventory and so Summoner/Scholar is at 30, I picket up Astrologian (at 30) and started and leveled Thaumaturge to 25 so far, and Blue Mage to 30. So just 5 more levels and I can get rid of all sub-30 caster gear, that should help a bit. Warrior is at 78 and that’s what I’m mainly pushing now, together with Machinist, who took over Ananta+Kojin Duty from Dancer.
Still haven’t had a look at the Wondrous Tails and I find the limit of 2000 Poetics a bit silly, I need a spreadsheet now to keep track of which gear sets I already bought because I need to store them at a retainer.
For the MSQ and post-Shadowbringers content, first I was blocked by item level (but that could be solved by buying 2-3 cheap-ish crafted items on the market board) and now I guess I need to run all Crystal Tower raids? I thought that was a recent change if you were finishing up ARR, not that it would come to haunt me in 5.3. Anyway, I still have 2 months to get through the story.
Oh, and I still need to read up if it’s feasible to get at least one Relic Weapon at 80, either for Bard or Warrior. I don’t want to invest a huge amount of time and Gil, but I think it’s an iLvl upgrade and if it looks cool… why not? At least the first step.
Again I’ve been trying to push my Beast Tribe Dailies and Duty Roulettes and GC handins and a few other things. Paladin to 60 today, Dark Knight sadly didn’t make the cut. Warrior is 75 thanks to the Pixies, Dancer is 68 thanks to some duties and Stormblood dailies and Machinist gets an odd level here and there. Hopefully tomorrow I can get rid of a whole set of pre-60 tanking gear.
Overall it still feels a little slow, but I’m pretty excited about the crafting jobs:
All at 77, on average, thanks to the Dwarves and crafting all the GC turnins myself every day. I don’t love Fishing, and the market board is bad with availability, but at latest when the DoH jobs reach 80, I’m gonna go out again for Leves or to grab the handins myself. Maybe next Sunday already?