FFXIV Around Dragonhead

If I’m to complete a full week of FFXIV posts, I need to think of one more topic to write about. I thought I would describe a typical play session. This one happened on a Thursday night.

I login with my Miqote Archer. I’m semi-embarassed that I’m still playing the adorable cat girl with the squirrel tail that I made on a lark back when I started, but I’m stuck with her now because I’m not going back to level up another character now. Maybe someday I’ll use my change-appearance potion but I’m not sure if it will let me change my race/gender, and I’m pretty sure it won’t let me change my distinctly female-sounding name.

I’m level 40 at the time of this writing, so I’m in a place called Dragonhead in the Central Highlands of Coerthas. It’s a nice mountainous, snowy place where the season never changes and it’s winter all the time. It’s windy too, which is a nice touch on the character models. It’s also apparently filled with Inquisitors who are not very nice to unbelievers. For some reason that I don’t fully understand, my character is in Coerthas chasing down the lost airship of this guy Cid who lost his memory or something. Why Cid would pilot his airship through these frigid mountains is a mystery. It’s no wonder it crashed.

Sunrise around Dragonhead (or maybe it's sunset, who knows)
Sunrise around Dragonhead (or maybe it’s sunset, who knows)

There’s a fair amount of FATE grinding going on in this zone. So when I log in, there might be a FATE activity happening nearby that I’ll join. Maybe Svara the dragon is making mischief north of Dragonhead, or maybe a Roc is terrorizing people to the west (I think). I summon my chocobo to do some fighting and gain some more experience for his Attack skill tree. This FATE might lead to several others if I end up following a train of people grinding FATEs all over the map. FATEs, by the way, are group activities very similar to Rifts and Dynamic Events in Rift and GW2. They are a big selling point of this game to me. I love doing group activities without the hassle of actually forming and maintaining groups.

I like doing FATEs but I also want to work on my main story line, which has something to do with helping Cid of the long white, windswept hair find his airship. I really need an epic story summary in these games because I never remember what’s going on in the epic story line from day to day. Anyway, I pick out a few other side quests at my level too, but I don’t do every quest I see, because I know that someday I might be leveling another class and I might want to save some quests for then. So I only do the minimum number of non-story quests that I can get away with. (Leveling is not very fast in this game. I can gain a level each night if I push it, but it often takes me two or more days per level because I’m a bit lazy. And this is with a bunch of rest experience stored up.) I get to a place where I’m supposed to kill a big monster and collect some meat for a cook. I summon it, fight it, and die. Only then do I realize that I was supposed to summon the monster and sprinkle some stuff on him to make him killable. The second time works much better. While doing these quests, I also stop by any more FATEs that pop up along the way.

After a few FATEs and quests my mind starts to wander. When I first played FFXIV I enjoyed dungeons, but it takes a long time to queue on my server because I’m DPS. Also, the highest dungeon I can get into now is Qarn, and I have heard that PUGs aren’t always very successful in it because of some mechanics. (They don’t look that hard to me, but then most people don’t look up a guide beforehand.) Any boss that require a PUG to do more than tank and spank can be a bit frustrating, so I’m not sure if I want to deal with that, particularly since there is no easy way to leave a dungeon once you’re trapped inside. I typically avoid queueing for anything during the week, and save them for weekends, even though dungeons are by far the best experience you can get in FFXIV.

I notice I’ve got over 5,000 Company credits or whatever saved up, so I head back to Old Gridania to buy a promotion in my Grand Company (from 3 to 4 I think). This will let me peruse the higher level equipment, although I’m starting to realize that as soon as I buy a piece of armor from my Grand Company quartermaster, it gets replaced half a level later by a piece of quest gear. I should really just wait until I get to 50 to deal with Company gear. Meanwhile I’m 10 levels from 50 and only at Rank 3 out of what, 12? At any rate, it turns out I need to make more progress on my Company Hunting Log, which I had completely forgotten about. I open it up and find what I need to kill. This requires me to teleport all over the world and search for obscure mobs out in the wildress. It’s easy work, until I get to these three entries which are said to be in Halitali.

I go to the Halitali area, hoping I can find them wandering around in the desert outside, but to no avail. I surmise I’ll need to go into the Halitali dungeon to check these three guys off my Hunting list so I can promote myself. I try to enter the dungeon by myself, but it just brings up the queue. It’s getting a little late in the evening, and I know it’ll take at least a half hour for a dungeon queue to pop, so I resolve to do this dungeon tomorrow, on Friday night. It’s actually one I haven’t done before, so it might be fun.

Then I’ll get my Company promotion and go back to FATEs and story quests. Ten more levels to go!

One thought on “FFXIV Around Dragonhead”

  1. Maybe someday I’ll use my change-appearance potion but I’m not sure if it will let me change my race/gender, and I’m pretty sure it won’t let me change my distinctly female-sounding name.

    Fantasia Potions will let you change race, clan, and gender, but they won’t let you change names, and there’s not a way to change names at this time. The devs have said that they’re looking to make one, but there’s no timetable.

    Leveling is not very fast in this game. I can gain a level each night if I push it, but it often takes me two or more days per level because I’m a bit lazy. And this is with a bunch of rest experience stored up.

    Don’t overlook the daily Guildhest and Duty Roulette. Even as a DPS, the daily guildhest roulette tend to queue quickly and give several quests worth of XP, and the fight itself only takes a few minutes. If you have time for a dungeon, the Duty Roulette for low-level dungeon is usually worth a third to half a level on its own.

    This will let me peruse the higher level equipment, although I’m starting to realize that as soon as I buy a piece of armor from my Grand Company quartermaster, it gets replaced half a level later by a piece of quest gear.

    You /generally/ will find that applicable Grand Company gear has significantly better stats than the items given out by quests (and equivalent to the gear found in dungeons), and the Allagan ~Metal~ Pieces are in turn worth more than most items on the market boards. Downside to the Grand Company armor is that it never has a complete set with applicable stats for any given class, so it’s mostly useful for filling in gaps with dungeon gear. You also won’t find many high-level accessories or belts from quest items, so either leveling goldsmithing or buying from the market boards is pretty much a necessity.

    Note that seals are very, very inexpensive and don’t have much value at the end-game — you’ll almost never use Grand Company armor at 50, and the Grand Company weapon is fairly cheap — so unless you’re focusing on getting your Grand Company rank up or buying the chocobo chick minion, they’re worth spending even on gear that won’t last long.

    Meanwhile I’m 10 levels from 50 and only at Rank 3 out of what, 12?

    While there are more ranks shown on the character list, Second Lieutenant is the highest rank that can currently be reached.

    For some reason that I don’t fully understand, my character is in Coerthas chasing down the lost airship of this guy Cid who lost his memory or something.

    You’re trying to fight a Primal that decided to surround her lair with a hurricane, something best not invaded with a boat or the airship equivalent of a taxi.

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