I thought to make a simple little Disciple of the Hand guide for people who might not understand it too well. During the creation of this guide we are currently in beta testing so things may change. Please make additions to this if you see any inaccuracies or any information that may be missing.
A Disciple of the Hand is a fun career path to do if you have the patience and enjoy making items for friends. Most games are focused on making materials first than items second so if you come charging in thinking your going to make a nice steel plated chest piece right away you will only be frustrated and discouraged. Take your time, it's not a race!
The first thing you need to ask yourself is what you want to do. I would recommend choosing a craft that can repair your armor and create armor for yourself. It is completely up to you! I went the way I did cause the Open Beta currently has no Auction House and there are no good amount of vendors to buy gear from.
When you have completely decided what you wanna focus crafting on, pick up the main hand and off hand tools for that craft. They can be found in every city in a crafting area or at their specific guilds. The tools play a special purposes for every craft. You will want to use common sense while using these tools. I will explain that later.
Alchemy (Alchemists Guild): Zuzudesu
Armory (Armory Guild): Joellaut
Blacksmith (Blacksmith's Guild): Smydhaemr
Culinary (Culinary Guild): Jossy
Alchemy (Alchemist's Guild): Jemimi
Goldsmith (Goldsmith's Guild): Pamisolaux
Weaver (Weaver's Guild): Norbettaux
Carpenter (Carpenter's Guild): Osgar
Leather-working (Leathercrafter's Guild): Spaerfedar
Don't think about this too much. As you should be fine starting out. You should use this site (ZAM) and take a look at many others. They are hard at work gathering recipes for us to use. You can also gain recipes from local levequests that you complete. At first this may be difficult or confusing but just hang in there. Eventually we will have access to every synth in this awesome game.
The guts of this guide. I am not going to show you how to make a Sword of a Thousand Truths or anything, my plan is just enough to teach you to be off on your own adventures.
You should have an idea of what you want to craft. Your only a level 1 so keep your materials light and craft level 1 crafts. It wont be hard. This will remove the risk of breaks and frustration that can lead to Lalafell hunting sprees. Gather your materials from Mining, Botany, Logging, Fishing, and killing harmless creatures (avoid hunting Lalafell.) While doing many of those tasks you will receive crystals. These are your lifeline for crafting. If you are new and don't know what crystals are for its quite simple. In your inventory there is a tab called "crystals." It displays the amount of crystals and types you own of each element type. There are 3 types of crystals. Shards, Crystals, Clusters. From what I can tell 16 Shards = 1 Crystal and 12 Crystals = 1 Cluster. Alchemists can break down the Clusters and Crystals into their smaller counterparts. To put it simply, you need crystals of a certain element to complete a craft.
Once you have all your materials, equip your Main Hand tool and your Off Hand tool. The game will then switch to the proper discipline. You will get a new interaction to appear in your menu called "Synthesize" (in Figure 1-1.) Go ahead and select Synthesize to start the crafting process. For those superstitious FFXI people, I have a high belief that facing some random direction will not change your odds.
Your character will now sit down and a crafting menu will appear. (Figure 1-2)
The menu above has a few buttons. "Requested Items" is for local guildleves when they give you the materials for the quest. I will explain that later. "Clear" removes all the items you have selected in the box. "Main Hand" will attempt to craft the materials entered using your Main Hand tool and "Off Hand" does the same as Main except with your Off Hand if you have it equipped.
Select the items for a compatible craft. You can by selecting one of the boxes in the menu and selecting an item from your inventory. You will have to guess on what hand tool to use. You kinda have to use common sense. As an armorer you won't use pliers to make a shield out of bronze sheets. You will most likely use the hammer...
Once you have selected the tool you want to use, a recipe list will open.(Figure 1-3)
This menu allows you to choose the item you want to create. It will display the simple item information in the top. Select the item you want to choose if you were given a choice and a new window will appear. (Figure 1-4)
This window will verify what you are attempting to make and it asks for a Required Skill and Required Crystals for the craft. As I am writing this in beta, not too many people know what The Skill Book is for. We will see soon. In the bottom of that screen it will say how many crystals/shards/clusters you need and how many you own. If you do not have enough you will see the number shown in red. Once you click "select" it will pop open the fun part of the crafting process. (Figure 1-5)
There are 5 things to note about this screen.
* A Timer
* Progress Bar
* 4+ types of Synthesis methods
The Timer - From what I found the timer just forces you to progress through the synthesis. If you let the timer run out you will lose some durability in a bad way such as failing an attempt. It's not the same as selecting wait which is explained below.
Progress Bar - This is how long you have until you complete your craft.
Durability - How much of your material can hold its shape. When it hits 0 you fail, even if you hit 100% Progress.
Quality - This will give you a greater chance to craft a +1 item.
4+ Types of Synthises Methods Standard Synthesis: Its... Standard. It will balance out the quality, progress, and durability loss of the attempt.
Rapid Synthesis: It will attempt to make you progress faster without any to little quality bonuses. If you fail the durability will suffer more than Standard.
Bold Synthesis: Focuses on quality and little on progress. I feel it to be the opposite of Rapid Synthesis with the same risk to durability. I tend to use this near the end of a synth.
Wait: You will notice your material sphere to be blinking different elements. Your goal is to stabilize this material so its glowing a solid color or the blinking is pulsing at a slower rate before your next attempt. It's not vital if the material is still blinking. When you select Wait it will decrease your durability by an increment of one each time at the possibility to stabilize your material. Don't attempt back to back waits too often. Doing that may degrade your durability too much. This is where the patience come into play. If your crystal becomes very unstable (Has an energy ring spinning around it) make sure you keep pressing wait till it stabilizes. It may never even stabilize and force you to attempt the craft. You can lose up to 50-60+ durability when you attempt to craft it while its in this state.
4+ types of Synthesis? What do you mean? Well as you level up you will gain more abilities for your Discipline of the Hand Rank. As you learn and equip these abilities you will be able to use them in this menu. A good example is Epiphany for the Goldsmith Discipline. When you hit level 10 you will learn this ability and can equip it. While your crafting you will notice a scroll bar in your crafting choices. Just something to note while your leveling your craft.
If you finished your craft you can select "Finish" to complete the item or you may get a "Touch Up" selection. (Figure 1-6)
Touching up your items will lower the Durability by a few points. So be careful at this point. I noticed that in this area I created a High Quality item. I did so by touching the item up a few times. After you select finish you are done crafting your item!
High Quality Items This is a little different then Final Fantasy 11. In Final Fantasy 11 if you received a +1 item the stats of the item went up slightly. It looks like in FFXIV it only effects the durability of the item such as the rate of repair.
-Higher Quality items are higher in stats, but are only seen in the attributes section not on the item itself. For instance, a Hempen Cowl +3 gives around 10 more defense and 8 more evade than a regular Hempen Cowl.-
There are different crafting guilds in all the cities. I am mentioning this so you can understand the point of these places. Basically they provide you with crafting support at a cost of Gil. It allows you to craft items with less chance of botching the synth. The guilds also provide you with skills you can buy with Guild Points you receive from Levequests (need verification on this.) Another note is that these guilds will provide you with more materials to buy from their shops than the plain crafting shops in the other cities.
From what I have found, the best way to level up a crafting discipline is by Local Levequest system. You can only complete/fail up to 8 per 48 hours. In every city there is an Adventurer's Guild with a table that has lighted tabletops. This is where you get the levequests. Usually it will be the NPC on the right, behind the counter. Once you selected your discipline and the quest, the quest will instruct you to locate a NPC at some location to gather materials or the NPC will straight up provide you with the materials. Pay attention to your chat log when you accept these quests.
NOTE: There is a good page sitting on the forums that explains this in more detail HERE.
Locate the NPC that will provide you with the materials in your levequest description. Once you locate the NPC, talk with them and it should give you a few options. "Small Chat" and "Name of your selected quest." Once you select your quest they will either complain that you have not given them their requested items (means you already have the materials) or they will give you the materials. Your screen should go dark and you will then have the materials. Look in your chat log when to make sure you received them.
Start your synthesis process except this time select the "Requested Items" button in your Synthesis screen. It will then ask you what quest to select. When you select the correct quest you have the materials for, it will automatically fill your materials box in the synthesis window. They will usually provide you with one or more extra materials in case you fail. If you find that you did not fail at all, use every material they gave. Its free experience points! If you are having trouble with the synthesis, the NPCs at the location may give you Crafting support to help. Although I was too stubborn to use it I would recommend it. Turn in your items to the NPC and you will receive crafting materials and a new learned recipe in your chat box. Make sure you write that down!
If you read through all of this I hope you understand the crafting a little more in Final Fantasy XIV. This is my first guide so please correct me if I am in error with any of this information. Please do understand this is created playing the Open Beta. If you want to add any information I welcome it! To view the original thread on this guide you can visit it Here Thanks for reading and I will try to update this as much as possible to help all those new folks out. See you in FFXIV at the crafting guilds!!!