Monday, February 8, 2021

Final Fantasy XIV: Getting The Skybuilders' Needle

On Sunday I managed to complete the Main Story Questline in Shadowbringers' 5.4. The game even displays a nice icon displaying the fact.

I did it!

I almost didn't complete the quests, though, because I had decided to get the Skybuilders' Needle first. I know, I know. The new tool only has 14 more craftsmanship & 13 more control over the Skysung Needle I already had. But the Skybuilders' Needle was introduced in 5.45 and I thought having at least one relic item within a week of the patch launch would be fun. Plus, I heard the tool glows. So off I went to get one.

The first thing was figuring out what I needed to craft in order to get the new tool. Turns out I needed to create a collectable item called the Oddly Delicate Rhea Cloth.

The hardest item I'd ever crafted

Getting the ingredients was the easy part. The cocoons and ice stalagmites are found in The Diadem. One harvesting session and one mining session supplied all the mats I needed, plus a couple hundred thousand gil besides.

Enie's selection of special crafting ingredients

Obtaining the Oddly Delicate Rhea wasn't a problem. I picked up more than enough scrips to purchase all the ingredient during my gathering sessions. I just had to visit Enie and purchase what I needed. The problem I would encounter is crafting the items themselves.

Oddly Delicate Rhea Cloth is a level 80 4-star recipe. Basically, among the hardest items to craft in terms of skill in Final Fantasy XIV. I had to treat the quest much like an end-game dungeon and wear the best gear possible. Which meant overmelding as much as possible. Remember all that gil I had left after purchasing a cottage? I spent a lot of it trying to duplicate a build I found online. I didn't finish, but I did wind up with 2741 craftsmanship, 2730 control, and 545 crafting points when including my specialization in weaving. 

Yes, the crafter's name is listed on items

By eating properly and taking my medicine, I upped my statistics to 2741 craftsmanship, 2842 control, and 617 crafting points.

I still had one major hurdle. I needed to learn a new way of crafting. The way I have crafted since I started playing wasn't efficient enough.

4500 or bust!

I needed 60 Oddly Delicate Needle Parts. I did not want to have to craft 60 items. The way I approached the problem was simple. If I could get two of the needle parts every craft, the crafting itself was worthwhile. I eventually found a guide from Patch 5.21 that taught the basic techniques which I adapted to the current challenge. I did find an instructional video, but I need to complete my overmelding first before I can use that crafting pattern. The guy was running a build with a base of 2759 craftsmanship, 2821 control, and 569 crafting points before food and medicine.

After I got the hang of the method (and stopped clicking on Careful Synthesis instead of Observe), I routinely exceeded 4500 collectability and would get 6500+ collectability about half the time. Honestly, I was happier with the improvement in my crafting skill than I was getting the new version of the relic tool. And I was very happy when I received the Skybuilders' Needle.

Showing off the new tool

I do have to applaud the nice touch Squar Enix included after I received my new tool. I then received a quest to show it off! A nice role play quest, because after spending all the gil and doing all the work, I definitely wanted to tell everyone. Might as well tell the NPCs too, right?

Now, for the big question. Was getting the Skybuilders' Needle worth the effort? I think so. My understanding is that the final version of the relic tool is best in slot for the next 6-8 months. With any luck, my crafting gear will carry me well into Endwalker, perhaps even until reaching level 90. I also learned a lot more about crafting not only in the final step, but in the journey from upgrading the tool from the original iLevel 440 version up until it became the Skysung Needle. While I'm poorer in terms of gil, I'm richer for the experience.

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