As FFXIV has been out for awhile and I have yet to see a good chocobo companion guide, I decided to put together an in-depth guide going over everything from unlocking the companion to leveling tactics for getting it up to speed quickly. I have put together a video guide detailing everything you want to know about your companion from unlocking it to spec to leveling strategies:
There is also a full text based guide below if you do not feel like sitting through a video (I know a lot of times I don’t)!
The Companion Quest: Unlocking Your Chocobo
Unlocking your summonable chocobo companion is actually very simple in FFXIV. Here are the steps involved:
- Hit level 30.
- Go to Camp Tranquil and get the quest from the NPC named “Docette”. She will issue a quest titled “My Fiesty Little Chocobo”. It is important to get this quest from Docette first – just talk to the NPC, get the quest, and head to Bentbranch Meadows.
- Follow the quest line in Bentbranch Meadows. The whole quest line takes about 5 minutes.
- Once you finish the few tasks in the quest line, you can summon your new companion by using the consumable “Gysahl Greens” item. The Merchant & Mender NPC in Bentbranch Meadows will sell these, as does the Black Rabbit Trader NPC just northeast of the Aetheryte in Gridania.
That’s it! Your chocobo is now ready for use.
FFXIV Chocobo Companion Skill Trees
Your chocobo gets access to a variety of skills. You can the chocobo companion screen by opening up the character sheet then clicking the small companion icon at the top of the sheet. This will open up the chocobo menu.
On this screen, you will be able to see your chocobo’s current level, experience points, and chosen skills. Skill points work as follows:
- Every level, you gain 1 skill point for the current level. At level 1, you get 1 skill point, for level 2 you get 2 skill points, for level 3 you get 3 skill points, and so on.
- A level 10 Chocobo possesses 55 skill points (1+2+3..+10).
- Skills in a particular tree must be learned in order.
- The level 1 skill in a skill tree costs 1 skill point, the level 2 skill costs 2 skill points, the level 3 skill costs 3 skill points, and so on.
Recommended FFXIV Chocobo Spec
Due to this increasing cost of skills along with the increasing number of skills earned per level, if players want to get the level 10 skill for a particular tree, they must invest all of their skill points in that particular tree. Alternatively, since level 10 provides 10 skill points, players could go up to level 9 in one tree and then up to level 4 in another tree, as the first four skills in a particular tree only amount to 10 total skill points. This 9/4 approach will generally lead to the strongest companion, as the level 10 skill for any of the trees is not so strong that it makes up for the first 4 skills in another tree.
My recommended spec is to go 9 attack / 4 healer, maximizing your chocobo’s damage while still giving it some healing capacity. This seems to benefit all of my character classes the most. Theoretically the rare player who plays as a caster and has zero back-up classes might prefer a tanking version of the chocobo, but I personally do not like my chocobo to do any tanking. It is infuriating when I am farming and try to kite one enemy to the next pull only to have the chocobo pull threat. Additionally, even as a healer, it is helpful for the c hocobo to throw out the occasional heal so you can focus on using your damage-dealing abilities.
Can I Respec My Chocobo Skill Points?
At the time of this writing, the answer is unfortunately no – all decisions are final. However, the developers have stated time and time again they want to add a reset option since this permanent feature of point assignments has led to great player frustration.
However, if you messed up your first few levels of point assignments, do not fret too much. Leveling up a chocobo companion all the way to rank 10 is extremely time intensive. I suspect literally 99% of the playerbase will not have a max rank chocobo companion by the time this fix is rolled out. There is also talk that the developers may actually allow players to get several chocobo companions that could be summoned independently. This would be a nice addition for players who want a tanking companion for their caster classes but a DPS companion for their tanking classes.
FFXIV Chocobo Companion Leveling Guide: Tips & Strategies for Fast Leveling
Leveling up your chocobo companion is a time-consuming affair. In this guide, I will discuss how exactly chocobo companion experience points work and reveal some of the strategies for leveling up your Chocobo companion as quickly as possible.
How Chocobo Companion Experience Points Work
With every enemy kill, your chocobo companion will earn a fraction of the experience points you would normally earn from the kill. Since the amount of experience points you earn is directly dependent upon your level versus the enemy’s level, so it goes with your chocobo companion. You chocobo companion’s level is the same as your current level regardless of rank. This means that if you summon a rank 1 chocobo companion on your level 50 class, you will have to fight level 43+ enemies in order to get decent experience for your chocobo companion. Additionally, you will get the most experience by fighting level 50 opponents.
At the same time, if you summon your chocobo companion on a low level class, your chocobo will summon at that class’s level regardless of the chocobo’s rank. You could summon a rank 9 chocobo companion on your level 10 character and get experience points for that companion by fighting level 10 enemies. As a result, one of the best methods for earning experience points by using your companion as you level up new classes.
The primary problem with the chocobo companion is that it does not earn bonus experience points upon FATE or quest completion – primary sources of experience points for leveling players. Additionally, you cannot mount when your companion is out – you must walk everywhere! Finally, you cannot have your companion out when you join a party. You can summon the companion in up to a 4-person party, but only after you join the group.
As a result, you can forget about leveling up your companion as you do FATE groups. You can do FATEs as they spawn nearby, but with the inability to mount and the fact the companion gets no bonus experience points from the FATE limits the effectiveness of this option. Instead, you will be left to largely grinding if you want to level your companion on a low level class. As a test, I went from level 16 to 17 on my Marauder just by grinding. In exactly 1 hour of grinding, I earned just over a level with my Marauder and about 40% of rank on my rank 2 chocobo. Given that each rank requires more and more experience, it takes a very long time to go up to rank 10.
Chocobo Companion Power Leveling Guide
If you want to level up your companion very quickly using whatever means necessary, there are methods for powerleveling this chocobo companion. Currently, it seems that your chocobo earns full experience points even when you are in a group. As a result, rather than farm by yourself, you can add 3 other players to the group and kill enemies together in order to rapidly earn companion experience. The companion even seems to benefit slightly from the group bonus, netting even more experience points than when solo.
The best strategy I have found is to take advantage of the tightly-packed group of level 50 enemies found around Urth’s Fount in South Shroud (near Quarrymill):
This camp is tightly packed with level 50 water elementals. You can solo here or preferentially get a group together and AoE everything down. Four players together can easily AoE everything in just two pulls, earning about 1500-2000 companion experience points on each pull. I was able to get experience points at about a 4x faster rate than solo grinding by using this strategy. To make the Water Elementals group up, be sure to use line of sight behind the pillar so they do not sit spread out at a distance nuking you.
You can even have multiple groups here if there is a lot of competition if you can coordinate with the other group. One group will pull the enemies while the second group will kill them after they are grouped together by the first group. The group with the claim on the kill gets full experience points, while the group that does the damage gets very close to that amount via the way experience points are calculated. Even though the group doing the killing does not have the claim on the mob, if they do all the damage, their companions will get full credit for the kill. This is demonstrated in the full video guide in the beginning of the article.
Note that in order to join a group of 4 and use companions, you have to join the group first, then summon your companion. You will not be able to join a party while your companion is actively out.
Bonus Gil Making Strategy
You can actually make a lot of gil while leveling up your companion by doing one of two things:
- If playing solo with a low level character, grind off of enemies that drop valuable items. For example, if you had a level 35 character, you could grind on Karakul with your companion summoned. The Fleece drops will make you money while your companion will get experience points for every enemy kill. If you were to do the same thing at 50, your companion would get no experience points.
- If you are playing solo with a level 50 character, equip a few pieces of item level 55 cheap crafted green gear and fight level 45+ enemies. Now, as your companion earns experience points, you will build up spiritbond on that equipment. You can then convert this equipment for materia!
- If you are playing in a group with a level 50 character, you can equip even more pieces of cheap crafted gear to build up spiritbond. If you have a group of 4+ at the Urth’s Fount location, you do not need end-game gear to keep up with spawns, particularly as the healer. You can instead just equip a bunch of crafted gear to build up spiritbond to break down into materia. You will earn decent gil from the materia and simultaneously rank up your companion! I humorously mentioned this Urth’s Fount camp in my very early gil guide, but it turns out there is actually decent gil to be made here if you use this strategy.
FFXIV Companion Conclusion
Unlocking your companion in FFXIV is easy and is something that should be done by all players. Once you have it unlocked, you can rank it up by farming on a low level character or grinding off of level 50 enemies at Urth’s Fount. Group up for best results if you want to power level the companion. Ideally, spend your points in a 9/4 split with 9 points going into attack and 4 going into healer. There is no way to respec points right now but hopefully a future update will grant players this ability.