Posted in FFXI

FFXI: The Mog Patio and Personal Housing

While I haven’t been making much in the way of progress in FFXI, I have been logging in every day for the Repeat Login Campaign. For a period of time set by the game, you can log in each day to earn points. You then spend those points on things like mounts and cosmetics, and the rewards change when campaigns change.

When I logged into my main, I discovered that I had stashed away a LOT of these points from last time I played in 2016. I remember picking up a few mounts back then – there were only two that had been released at the time – so this time I put my points towards a lot more mounts!

Looking through the other reward possibilities, one caught my eye: Mog Patio Designs. Based on the description, this made me imagine putting a nice hanging patio/balcony in my FFXI Mog House.

That’s what you’re reading here, too, right?

For those who haven’t played FFXI, the Mog House is sorta a blend between FFXIV retainers (storage and sales), the inn room and the personal housing apartment. In the early days, you went there to store stuff and check your market sales. But eventually, it expanded into the FFXI form of housing where you could garden and decorate. And yes, you can “Open” your Mog House to allow people to visit it (though I don’t know the details on this).

In order to use the Patio Design, I read that I needed to have unlocked the second story of my Mog House. Already, the FFXI housing has a couple of things over on FFXIV apartments in that:

  1. It’s freely and automatically granted to every character
  2. You can expand it to have a second story

Sure, the overall space is smaller feeling and not quite as robust to decorate, but still. For the time it was developed, this wasn’t a terrible housing system.

Anyhow, in order to add a second story to my Mog House I had to do a series of quests. None of these were difficult – they all required you to bring a specific type of flower to NPCs in each starter town.

The flowers you can buy for next to nothing in Jeuno – granted that you have fast travel unlocked there (oh thank you so much for fast travel!). This is what I did.

The hardest part of this quest was remembering how to interact with NPCs in this game. I forgot there was an oldskool Trade option, and from there, you select the item in your inventory.

I also had to unlock areas of Windurst I’d never been to before on this character, but that just allowed me to attune to different warp points that I probably needed to do anyhow. Once that was all done with, I went back to my Mog House and the moogle within let me know that I now had a second story!

You access the second story by clicking on the house door and selecting it as a travel option. Sorta like you would if you were going into a private chamber or workshop in a FC house in FFXIV. Not the most elegant way, but for the age of this game, I understand why.

And there it was.

A completely empty room, like the lower floor. Just sans Moogle.

So now, the next thing I had to do was save up points to buy the Patio upgrade. This took 1,000 points, which meant 10 days of logging in. This morning, I finally saved up enough and made my purchase.

I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that I went into this thinking I was going to write a post about how FFXI could add patios and second floors to housing and FFXIV needed to take a page out of its predecessor’s book. Only, that’s not quite what happened.

So, I bought the plans and I went to my Mog House expecting my moogle to announce the brand new patio add-on. That didn’t happen.

I then noticed that the patio plans (which had no instructions) were an item in my inventory, so I tried to use it. Couldn’t do that in the housing area.

Alright.

Left the Mog House. Used the item. That seemed to have worked. It gave me the Key Item: Mog Patio design document. But no instructions on how to use it again.

After poking around in the menus of the moogle in my house, I noticed a Remodel option. When I selected that, lo and behold, the option for Mog Patio was there! I clicked it and… nothing seemed to happen.

So I went up stairs to check. That’s when I learned…

Mog Patio is not a patio add on. Instead, it’s the equivalent of changing the wallpaper and floors in a FFXIV house. It did give an open sky (and you could see the skybox changing as time passed), which was kinda cool. But overall, not what I was expecting from the description of the item (come on, translation writers – you could have been a lot more specific with this description!).

Still, it’s a neat change from having the exact same walls as below. So, I left it and decided to move my cherry tree – the one lone decoration I own – from the first floor to the patio.

I then faced the question of… how do I change the layout to put items down on my second floor? On the first floor, I was clicking my moogle and selecting the Layout option. Here, there was no moogle to click.

I then did some research on this, and discovered you can type /layout in chat and it pulls up the layout options. Score!

And…. that’s my adventures so far in FFXI housing.

Posted in FFXI

FFXI: A 2003 Time Capsule

I’ve been digging through a lot of old files lately due to restoring my retro websites on Neocities. Yesterday, I ran across a folder which was a treasure trove of time travel for me – FFXI screenshots that date back to 2003!

Seeing that FFXI released in NA for PC on October 28, 2003 – my earliest picture seems to have been taken on November 8, 2003. So I was basically participating in the launch window. I probably played a bit before that because the first picture I took had my character in harness gear which means I’d already gotten through the intro bits, and was finally out in the forest where I was leveling.

My First Character & Screenshot

Ironically, my first character in FFXI was Ben. It just so happens that my current main in FFXIV is also now Ben! I never got Ben beyond level 20-ish if I remember right, and sadly, I don’t think his character exists anymore, either.

Still, here’s a gallery of Ben’s early progress as a Red Mage (which is also his main job in FFXIV now).

I see that I took some pictures of the landscape (it was amazing graphics at the time) and random things. Namely… a summoner with a carbuncle! How exciting!!

Probably the first time I saw a carbuncle and chocobos

And… my first group in the Dunes! Working on drops for that sub job quest!

And then, my sister joined the game. I have pictures of her on her White Mage.

It seems that I rolled an alt character (yes even back then) to level with my sister. This was a Mithra named Aywren. I think I see a pattern there and in FFXIV. šŸ™‚

This character MIGHT still exist. It seems somewhere down the line, I had two service accounts and both have an Aywren on them.

Anyhow… seems I still made more progress on Ben, however.

I was around for the Christmas event that year. Here’s decking the halls in San d’Oria!

And then some final pictures of Ben’s progress into January.

And that was it. I played FFXI at launch for about three months before the inability to solo and just the overall difficulty of the game got to me. I know my sister left before I did, so after that, I was pretty much alone and it just made it impossible to progress in any meaningful way.

I did return to it on and off over the years. I see my last service date on that account is 2006.

The game has changed a LOT since those days – I even wrote a series of posts when I tried it out again back in 2016. I’m not sure why I stopped playing again back then – probably got too busy – but I did purchase all of the expansions on my SE account. Sooooo….

All of this has inspired me to reup my sub, especially given the 20th anniversary is rolling around. While I do currently have an Aywren character, I might just create a new version of Ben to try the game from level 1 again. It’s been 5 years since I’ve touched the game (thankfully, documenting it years ago has helped give me a boost on what I need to do to get it up and running again), so I’m lost in approaching controls and such.

Anyhow. I started with my first ever screenshot. Have my last screenshot from 2004.

Posted in FFXI, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXI: Collecting Trusts and Level 30 Dark Knight

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It’s been almostĀ a month since I began playing and writing about my return to FFXI. At this point, I’ve already far surpassed anything that I did back when I played FFXI over a decade ago. I have a level 30 Red Mage, a level 30 Dark Knight (Advanced Job), unlocked chocobos, earned mounts, and am progressing in my city ranking.

Everything from here on out is brand new to me, so I no longer feel like I’m in the state of “returning”… if that makes sense. I’ve also been slacking off my progression in the game quite a bit in favor of trying out other games lately. I’m still very interested in checking out these storylines that are dangling before me, and I want to put that cheaply-purchased box of expansions to some use. So, I’m not ready to call it quits yet.

However, I am changing the slant of my posts from being a “Return to Vanaā€™diel” to something more like my normal progression posts. So, I’m officially bringing that series to an end.

Collecting Trusts

My little Trust collection. I also now have Shantotto II from this month's login rewards.
My little Trust collection. I also now have Shantotto II from this month’s login rewards.

With that said, one of my new favorite things is to collect Trusts in FFXI. Yeah, I know they should technically be called Alter Egos, but folks seem to call them Trusts, and that’s rubbed off on me.

Last month, there was someĀ Alter Ego Extravaganza going on that I wasn’t totally aware of until near the end of the month. Once I learned about this, I picked up a whole slew of new Trusts, including that really awesome tiger at the top of the post! Say what you want about dated graphics, I think this NPC looks pretty darn good!

Apparently, Ciphers are normal rewards for things like log-in events – I picked up a Shantotto II Trust from log-in rewards this month, for example. Being a solo player and a collector, I have to say that I really, really like the whole Trust collection system.

Since up until last month,Ā the game didn’t have things such as mounts to collect, Trusts kinda seemed to be the collectable thing to me. You know, that thing you summon, run around with, and feel accomplished having? I know I feel tough with a huge tiger following me around… and he’s pretty strong, too!

My only beef with Trusts, and it’s a small one… is that you have to re-summon them every time you level up if you want them to be on level with you. It’s not terrible, but when you have a full party to individually dismiss and re-summon, and you gain levels as quickly as I seem to, it’s something I ended up doing often.

However, if the alternative is to not have Trusts, I’ll totally take the inconvenience of re-summoning. Yes, I will.

Leveling Dark Knight

One of my goals for May was to level my Dark Knight to 30, in order to match my highest level job from before. In the process of doing so, I have discovered Dark Knight is… really not that exciting of a job. Honestly, Trusts do all the fighting for me since my attacks are super slow. At least with Red Mage I was able to cast spells and feel like I was adding something to the fights my Trusts were carrying me through.

Not to mention, Dark Knights aren’t exactly considered the most wanted classes later on. I know that really shouldn’t effect my thoughts on it since I have no desire for end-game group content. But, still…

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So, as much as I love the scythe, I don’t know if I’m going to continue leveling this job or not (at this point). I’m curious about Beastmaster, however, which was another job I had always wanted to unlock and try. I also hear that Geomancers are highly desired, and a job that attacks with a handbell is… well… interesting.

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Oh, and I got my first housing decoration from the monthly login, as seen above. Apparently there’s some whole mog house expansion/decoration system that I know nothing about yet… but should really get involved with!

Aaaand that all being said, I’ve completely caught you guys up on all my progress in FFXI! I do want to write a quickie post about the scripting I’ve learned with Windower 4 that’s been a huge help, but from here on out, I’ll be posting progression as I make it.

Posted in FFXI, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXI: Return to Vanaā€™diel ā€“ Unlocking Dark Knight

I return to Vanaā€™diel after not having played FFXI for over a decade. Here are my adventures!

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Since I’d unlocked mounts and reached level 30 on my Red Mage, it was time for me to experience unlocking my first Advanced JobĀ ever in FFXI. Of course, I picked Dark Knight for two reasons – the quest sounded pretty easy and scythes.

The quest actually was pretty easy, except I made it a lot harder and longer than it needed to be by mis-reading the wiki guideĀ (several times). This was totally my fault, though.

The first thing I had to do was make the run to Bastok, which wasn’t too big a deal. I needed to do this anyway to unlock the warps to all three of the main starter cities, so this was a good thing. Then I had to find the quest giver, which started an interesting cutscene about the emo nature of the Dark Knights in general.

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I then had to go into theĀ Palborough Mines to continue the quest. I made sure I had a map before I set out to go there… but this was where things started to go wrong. At first, none of the enemies aggroed as I was higher level than they were, so I thought I was pretty safe.

The guide noted that I needed to go to the third floor of the mines, where I’d find a boat. Only, the third floor apparently meant only taking the elevator downwards once (so confusing). So, here I thought I was on the second floor, and didn’t even go looking for the boat. I saw that there was a crystal further in the mines, so I navigated through towards it, thinking that must be the way I needed to go.

The problem with this is that the enemy level changed abruptly, and suddenly I was getting attacked! Because I hadn’t been attacked before, I didn’t have any of my Trusts out… so I promptly died before I got to the crystal.

Whelp. That meant a run back out to the mines. This time, I pulled my Trusts out and battled my way to the crystal, unlocking the warp there.

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Going further, I found a set of stairs, which I thought must lead to the third level. Only, they didn’t. They led to some kind of shrine instead.

Okay. Crud. I looked back over the guide to try to figure out what I’d done wrong. I noted that it said that floor 3 had a burn mark on the map, which matched with the map I was on (even though it seemed like it should be floor 2), so I went back to the starting point of the map. Sure enough, there was the boat, like the guide described.

Ooops. Well, that was a death and 40 mins of fighting I didn’t need to do. But at least I opened the warp to the mines, right?

So, I enter the room via boat and get the cutscene where ZeidĀ is supposed to give me the sword Chaosbringer. Once that’s done, the cutscene kicks me out of the mines.

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Alright… except… my inventory was full at the time of the cutscene and I didn’t realize it! Which means, I didn’t get the sword! And now I have to run back and do that all over again! UGH!

Honestly, it was just easier to use the warp back and fight my way through to the boat, which is what I did. I guess opening the warp was a good thing in the end.

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SO. This time, I made sure I had room in my inventory for the sword before entering the cutscene, and I SUCCESSFULLY obtained Chaosbringer.

Dark Knight Quest

So, the Dark Knight quest boils down to this mainly. You equip the level 1 Chaosbringer and kill everything. You can kill anything you want at any level at any location. You just have to kill 100 things.

Ok.

Some stipulations:

  1. Only Warriors, Dark Knights and Rune Fencers can use great swords.
  2. The game doesn’t keep track of how many things you kill in any recordable way that you can see. So you have to do it manually. Like with a paper and pencil IRL.Ā 

I hadn’t even started leveling Warrior yet, so it was back to level 1 for me to equip the sword. Then, I got myself a pad and pencil, summoned some Trusts, and dug in for the long, tediousĀ task of killing 100 things out in the forest.

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This went pretty fast with Trusts helping out. Leveling Warrior (which I needed anyhow) was a good side effect. I was about level 15 by the time I finished marking my 100th kill.

That’s when I looked back at the wiki and realized my mistake.

Wait… killing blow? Oh, crud. I’m pretty sure that with a party ofĀ Trusts, I wasn’t getting most of the final killing blows on things.

So… what does that mean?

Yeah. De-summon Trusts. Do it again.

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But at least my Warrior was now in the upper teens and slaughtering things pretty fast.

Once I was pretty certain I’d killed 100 things (again), I had to travel toĀ Beadeaux. There, I got a cutscene that made me an official Dark Knight!

Woot! First Advanced Job unlocked!

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Finally.

Posted in FFXI, FFXIV, Gaming, Minecraft, MMORPGs, Nintendo 3DS, The Secret World

Weekend Gaming Highlights: TSW, Minecraft, FFXI, FFXIV, LoZ!

 

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I did quite a bit of gaming this weekend, and have already got to work on some of my May gaming goals. Most of these will need their own posts, but I wanted to consolidate them here so I don’t forget what I did! šŸ˜€

The Secret World

I’ve wanted to roll an alt character in TSW for a while, ever since they changed the new player experience. I like to go back to these things and see how they’ve changed. I also haven’t played the game from anything but a Templar point of view, so I wanted to see what differed between the factions. I only just got to Kingsmouth, so expect more blogging about this in the future. šŸ™‚

Minecraft

Did you know that until this weekend, I was one of thoseĀ people who had never played Minecraft before? Yeah. Believe it.

I’m only playing single player to learn things at this point, but having a great time. Expect more blogging on this in the future for sure!

That little Minecraft shack everyone builds their very first time.
That little Minecraft shack almost everyone builds their very first time.

FFXI

I’ve been leveling my Dark Knight, trying to make the goal of level 30 before the month is out. I started at level 4. Had her to level 22 before the night was out in very little time. I’m shocked at how fast solo leveling is in this game now.

I also activated what looks to be some sort of storyline quest that came with the expansions I picked up this weekend, which I need to investigate.

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Level 22 Dark Knight!

Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

I am happy to report that as of last night, I am no longer stuck on the boss of the Desert Palace. That boss was tough for me! It didn’t help that I didn’t yet have the net (for some reason), which means I couldn’t carry around fairies in a bottle to revive me when I died. So, I went and got that rectified.

It took me three tries, but I finally nailed it. Woot! Progress and one of my May goals complete! šŸ˜€

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“Thank You” is a good place to start.

FFXIV

I’ve taken a bit break from FFXIV for a while, so yesterday marked a grand return of sorts for me. Syn has been overseas on a work trip, and away for work before that, too. She just got back, and had it all set up to have a sort of “Celebration Day” for the FC when she did. A lot of folks are hitting milestones IRL – Finding new jobs, getting apartments, completing finals, and having birthdays (me, soon!).

Funny thing was, I’d almost forgotten it was also the FC’s 2nd Anniversary. So it all fell in place. Syn was (literally) buying any FC folks who wanted pizza gift cards to pizza places. They were pretty shocked that she was serious about it. XD

Aside from the FC birthday, I also healed the Crystal Tower Trio on my Scholar for the first time this weekend. That was a learning experience! Syn said I did well, but I feel like I still need a lot of practice. It’s been a while since I’ve healed a raid, and last time I did it, it was with White Mage. We ran a few of those towers with full FC groups, so it was less stressful if I messed up. I also hit level 51, and I’m seriously considering putting some more time into leveling Scholar at this point since I do find it a lot of fun.

Aside from that, I went back and cleaned up all the unfinished job quests I’ve left lying around on Zuri. That included twoĀ level 50 quests for Scholar, two level 45s and two level 50s on Summoner, a level 54 on Dragoon and a level 50 and level 52 on Monk. Whew. I’ve been lazy… but I got them done, finally!

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Feeling accomplished!

Posted in FFXI, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXI: Return to Vanaā€™diel ā€“ My Kingdom for a Mount

I return to Vanaā€™diel after not having played FFXI for over a decade. Here are my adventures!

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New mounts were actually first patched in with the last update in April, right before I started playing. So, I joined at a pretty good time.

To unlock mounts in general, you must be level 20, have a map of the Jeuno area, and have finished your chocobo license quest. Then, you have to talk toĀ Mapitoto, who is right in the chocobo stables in Jeuno to start the mount quest, Full Speed Ahead!

She gives you a temporary raptor to ride and tosses you out on the Batallia Downs. You have to ride your raptor to points marked on your map (which you can view by scanning for NPCS on the map view). When hisĀ Motivation drops and heĀ starts slowing down, you can /cheer for him and keep him going.

You are timed, so you have to reach the food and reach the final NPC within a certain time limit. Once you do that, you earn the right to own mounts!

I also purchased a black tiger mount using the April login reward points. However, my character sits side-saddle on it, which…

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Yeah. It’s a little odd looking.

I do enjoy my raptor mount, however. But I learned really quickly your main class has to be level 20 or above or you can’t summon him. I guess for most people, that’s not a big deal, but just something to note for lower level characters.

Now that I achieved mounts, my next goal was to finish leveling Red Mage to 30 so I could focus on unlocking advanced classes! I read that Qufim Island was a good place, and it was right outside of Jeuno, so I went there to explore and reach level 30. Woot!

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Posted in FFXI, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXI: Ultimate Collection Seekers Edition (On Sale and Sold)

seekersI’ve been hesitating on picking up the FFXI Seeker’s Edition, despite being every single expansion in the game for $30. I was still feeling my way through the lower level content, for one, and didn’t see an immediate need to upgrade to the newest expansion yet. I also hadn’t made up my mind if I was going to push on playing another month or if I would have my fill of the game by that time.

Well, the Seekers Edition dropped to 50% off with the S/E sale, so I decided $15 for all the FFXI content is more than an excellent deal. So I’ve now upgraded my account to have all the stories and expansions FFXI can offer.

You know, looking at it that way, that sounds pretty exciting! šŸ™‚

Posted in FFXI, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXI: Return to Vanaā€™diel ā€“ A Quest for Grass

I return to Vanaā€™diel after not having played FFXI for over a decade. Here are my adventures!

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You wanna know something disappointing? I never got my chocobo license way back when I used to play FFXI. So I had no idea how it actually worked.

When I found out that you only get to rent a chocobo and not actually own a chocobo, that was disappointment. Of course, they finally did just introduce real mounts (more on that later), which kinda soothes the pain of that discovery. Because back in the day, that chocobo license was all I ever wanted as a lowbie player.

Quest forĀ Weed Grass

So, I picked up the chocobo quest in Jeuno, which requires me to getĀ Gausebit Grass.Ā These drop most often from Crane Flies in theĀ Meriphataud Mountains. This means I had another trip ahead of me since I’ve never been to that zone.

Everything from this point out is unknown territory for me. I’ve never been beyond level 20. I made the run to Jeuno once, but that’s as far as I got. So, it’s a little exciting to get past the point I was before and see what lay beyond.

What lay beyond? More zones with monsters that can three-hit kill me.

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I tried to be super careful and unlock every survival manual along the road. Then theĀ Sauromugue Champaign happened. Who the heck thought it was a good idea to put the survival manual up in a place where people couldn’t reach it? It was stuck up on this plateau, so I started skirting around the stone trying to find a way up. I easily spent 20-30 mins dodging powerful monsters and certain death, but never found the way to it.

In the end, I did accidentally aggro something and died a terrible death.

So, I had to start the run over again. This time, I totally ignored the stupid survival manual and just headed into the Meriphataud Mountains instead. Bleh.

There, I found Crane Flies in good population. But I also knew I was only a few zones away from Windurst, so I decided to finish up the run to that city to unlock it.

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That being done, I warped back out to theĀ Meriphataud Mountains and started farming flies. Pretty good experience and not a terrible drop rate for the grass. I was level 25 by the end of it all, and actually got an extra grass to drop, which I could sell for a little profit on the AH.

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Chocobo Luv

So, I returned to Jeuno and started the Chocobo Wounds quest. During this, I had to win the trust of a poor abused chocobo, who refused to eat. Eventually, I got him to take some of the grass I farmed up.

This quest has been sped up significantly. It used to be that you could only interact with the chocobo once a game day. Now you can interact with him once a real-life minute.

So, it didn’t take very long to get this quest wrapped up and earn my license.

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Once that was done, I was also able to start the quest for the new Raptor mount…

Posted in FFXI, Gaming, MMORPGs

FFXI: Return to Vanaā€™diel ā€“ The Run to Jeuno

I return to Vanaā€™diel after not having played FFXI for over a decade. Here are my adventures!

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The run to Jeuno.

It was just one of those experiences you had to have in your early 20s in FFXI. It was fraught with danger through zones that had mobs who could kill you in a few shots. And once a mob locks in on you in FFXI, you can bet they aren’t going to let up until you’re taking a dirt nap.

I remember making this run on a level 20 a long time ago. Because in Jeuno, the quest for your chocobo license begins. I did reach Jeuno back then, but I never did complete the quest for my license, sadly.

Now days, things are a lot easier with the home point and survival manual system. Once you reach a place and activate one of these two things, you can warp back there for gil or tabs. So I knew that getting to Jeuno was the challenge, and once there, I’d never have to make that run again.

I was level 23 when I started out, running from zone to zone. I purposely sought out the survival manualsĀ in each area, so that if something should aggro me, I’d have a warp back at least part of the way. Thankfully, I didn’t need to use them. I had a few close calls, but made it to the city, and activated the home points without any deaths.

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It was only once I got there and started the chocobo quest that IĀ looked up what I’d need to complete it. Four clumps ofĀ Gausebit Grass. Checking the auction house, I saw that each clump is selling for about 5,000 gil each. Now, I do have a little bit of gil stashed, but that would cost me about 1/3 of what I own. So, I decided to go about it the hard way and gather the grass for myself.

Based on wiki information, these drop most often from Crane Flies in theĀ Meriphataud Mountains. Another zone that was quite a ways away through dangerous territory.

Whelp, I better get my running shoes on.

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