Since Patch 2.1 has completely turned end-game progression in FFXIV upside down, I wanted to put out a new post detailing what both fresh 50s and those leveling up a second class can do to progress quickly and efficiently into Final Fantasy XIV’s end-game.
FFXIV End Game Progression for Brand New Level 50 Characters
As a brand new level 50, you will now be entering an end-game where most players are already very well-geared, with many players having multiple classes with end-game gear. It can be quite intimidating to get started in end-game content given that established players typically insist on minimum average item level for groups.
Here is an easy means of progression that any level 50 can use to progress into end-game without drawing too many complaints for being undergeared. This guide assumes you already have taken the time to unlock all your class skills (via your class quests) and level up all your side-jobs for cross class skills.
Step 1: Daily Duty Finder Runs
As a fresh level 50, your first priority should be to participate in some easy duty finder runs in order to get your hands on some Tomestones of Philosophy. You can trade in Tomestones of Philosophy for Darklight Gear via Aurianna, an NPC that resides in the northeast corner of Revenant’s Toll in Mor Dhona.
Even a poorly-geared and brand-new level 50 character can get a quickly 400 Tomestones of Philosophy each day by participating in the daily Duty Roulette: Main Scenario (worth 300 Tomestones of Philosophy – 100 for the clear and 200 as the bonus reward) and Duty Roulette: Low Level (worth 100 Tomestones of Philosophy plus a bonus 10 Tomestones of Mythology).
Complete these two dailies each day for a few days in order to purchase a piece or two of Darklight equipment. You can also find an okay starter weapon via Grand Company seals (complete the quest line in order to unlock Lieutenant) or by buying it off the Auction House.
Step 2: Duty Roulette: High Level
After you get a couple pieces of Darklight gear, you should have no problem queuing up for “Duty Roulette: High Level” once each day. If you can help it, do not unlock hard mode Copperbell Mines, hard mode Haukke Manor, or Pharos Sirius. If you unlock these dungeons, they might come up in your Duty Roulette: High Level option. While this is not a bad thing once you have some gear, if you are queuing with just two pieces of Darklight and the rest crummy gear, you will be a burden to the group.
Continue to complete the other two Duty Roulette options as well. Each day, this will net you approximately 500 Tomestones of Philosophy (300 from main scenario, 100 from the high level run, 100 from the low-level roulette) and 80 Tomestones of Mythology (10 from the low-level roulette, 40 from the high-level roulette, and 30 from the high level run).
If you do this for 7-10 days, you will wind up with ~6-7 more pieces of Darklight gear and also hit the cap of 450 Tomestones of Mythology for the week. You will also likely pick up a couple of green drops from your Amdapor Keep and The Wanderer’s Palace.
If you have completed all three daily quests and want to continue gearing up, queue for Amdapor Keep or The Wanderer’s Palace. Running these will net 100 Tomestones of Philosophy each time, a chance at starter item level 55 gear, and Tomestones of Mythology (though these are capped at 450 for the week, resetting Monday at 10 AM EST).
Once you hit an average item level of ~65, you are ready for step 3.
Step 3: Crystal Tower & Relic Weapon
Once you have hit 6-8 pieces of Darklight gear (average item level of 65+), you are ready for the Crystal Tower. This is a 24-man dungeon which drops item level 80 pieces (Darklight is item level 70; Tomestone of Mythology gear is item level 90). It also provides 200 Tomestones of Philosophy and 50 Tomestones of Mythology for each completed run. However, you can only loot 1 piece of gear from Crystal Tower each week (resetting on Monday at 10 AM).
- Note: Tanks should reach an average item level of 70 – full Darklight or better – before entering Crystal Tower. It can be done with a tank in lower-level gear, but for the typical pick-up group a tank under item level 70 would be a burden.
Once you reach this point, after the reset, you will want to run the Crystal Tower until you get your item level 80 piece, collecting Tomestones of each type along the way. This will give you 1 item level 80 piece each week and help boost your Tomestone counts in the process.
During this same step, you should unlock your relic weapon. While upgrading from a grand company weapon to your Relic will be a massive upgrade, I put this in a later step simply because you do not gain a real advantage from getting your relic early. However, you are limited to one Crystal Tower and 450 Tomestones of Mythology each week, so you will want to hit this quota first, then go for your relic weapon in your spare time.
You can pick up the relic weapon quest in Vesper Bay from Nedrick Ironheart. There are plenty of guides out there on this topic if you need help at any part during the questline. With this level of equipment, you should have no problem completing any aspects of the relic quest. It is not too difficult to find groups or a few players that will carry newbies through Titan. This process used to be quite formidable, but enough players know the fight and enough players outgear the encounter that it is fairly trivial these days.
Unlock your relic, pick up a piece or two of Crystal Tower gear, and use your excess Tomestones of Philosophy to finish your Darklight set. This process will only take two weeks at most if you play an hour or so a day.
Step 4: Continue Crystal Tower & Hit Your Mythology Cap Weekly
After you unlock your relic weapon and finish off (or come close to finishing) your Darklight set, you can discontinue the Duty Roulette: Main Scenario and Low Level options (though low-level roulette is great for leveling up new classes).
Instead, spend the next week or two simply hitting your Mythology cap via Crystal Tower and Duty Roulette: High Level. Just a few runs of each will give you your item level 80 piece from Crystal Tower and cap your Tomestones of Mythology. As you accrue more Tomestones from this process, finish your Darklight set.
If you get bored, go ahead and unlock Copperbell Mines, Haukke Manor, and Pharos Sirius. However, know that once you unlock these, you might wind up in Duty Roulette with a bunch of poorly geared newbies, which can make high level duty roulette a bit of a pain sometimes. Occasionally you will wind up in a run where your tank happens to an average item level gear of 60 or less, which presents a bit of a problem.
Use your Tomestones of Mythology to buy a piece or two of item level 90 gear and to upgrade your Relic Weapon to the +1 version.
Step 5: Difficult End-Game Encounters
Once you finish off your Darklight set, acquire a relic weapon, have a few pieces of Crystal Tower and Mythology gear, your equipment will be reaching an average item level of 75+. At this point, you can comfortably participate in most end-game content.
Particularly, with an average item level of 75-80, you can handily finish the first four turns of The Binding Coil of Bahamut (drops item level 90 gear) and take out Ultima Weapon (drops item level 80 accessories).
Once you reach an average item level of 80+, you can handle all content in-game. If you want to min-max your equipment, consider raiding The Binding Coil turn 5 for item level 95 weapons as well as Extreme Mode Garuda (who drops item level 90 rings). Also, consider that some of the item level 90 weapons earned from defeating all three extreme mode primals are superior to their relic zenith counterparts.
New Character End Game Progression Summary
- Average Item Level of 55 or Less: Duty Roulette: Low Level, Duty Roulette: Main Scenario; repeat once a day for a few days in order to buy a piece or two of Darklight.
- Average Item Level of 55-65: Duty Roulette: High Level, Duty Roulette: Low Level, Duty Roulette: Main Scenario; buy a few more pieces of Darklight and bank Tomestones of Mythology.
- Average Item Level of 65-75: Crystal Tower, Duty Roulette: High Level. Run Crystal Tower until you get a piece, then use Duty Roulette: High Level to hit Mythology cap for the week. Continue to buy more Darklight with your excess Tomestones of Philosophy.
- Average Item Level of 75-80: Continue to run Crystal Tower for loot and cap Tomestones of Mythology. Buy a few pieces of Mythology gear and upgrade your relic weapon. Raid The Binding Coil through Turn 4 or Fight Ultima Weapon if you want to gear up quicker.
- Average Item Level of 81+: Cap Tomestones of Mythology; raid Extreme Mode Garuda for an item level 90 ring and The Binding Coil Turn 5 for a higher tier weapon.
Thanks to Crystal Tower, a higher Tomestones of Mythology cap, and the new Duty Roulette quests, gearing up a character for end-game has never been easier in FFXIV. It only takes about a week of playing 1.5 hours a day to hit an average item level of 65 and another week at a similar playtime to push item level 75. From there, a few more weeks and you are pushing item level 80 and geared almost as well as any player on the server.
Gearing Out a New Level 50 Character
Thanks to the massive experience points offered by the Duty Roulette: Low Level daily quest, many players have undertaken leveling up a new character class (myself included). In this guide, I wanted to discuss how to use your main character to quickly gear out your new level 50.
Crystal Tower Runs
The first thing you want to do is run Crystal Tower each week and greed-roll a piece of equipment for your fresh 50, or even for a class that you are leveling up. Since you can only roll on 1 piece of gear per Crystal Tower run, most gear rots. Just greed roll on whatever drops that you can wear so you can be done with this dungeon for the week. It will be eventually replaced by Mythology/Allagan gear, so there is no point in holding out for a particular drop.
WP Speed Runs
In order to cap your Tomestones of Mythology for the week, skip the Duty Roulette and instead do WP speed runs on your main class.. The 100 Tomestones of Philosophy you get from each run will allow you to quickly buy Darklight for your new level 50 class.
If you have a really geared character, try Haukke Manor Hard Mode instead. This is my preferred option if I am using Duty Finder – if you have a few geared players, 20-minute runs are not a stretch and pay out 50 Tomestones with each run.
Extreme Primal Weapons
Clearing all three Primals in Extreme Mode will reward you with an i90 weapon. These weapons are as good as the Relic +1. You can do this once per week and get an i90 weapon each time. The best part about this questline is that you can pick any weapon as your reward. You can clear this on your main character and then grab the weapon for your fresh level 50. This weapon is as good as Relic +1 and does not cost any tomestones!
Hard Mode Garuda / King Moggle Mog Fight
If extreme mode primals are a bit too hard, you can pick up an item level 70 Garuda weapon or an item level 75 Mog weapon off of these fights on your main class and have it ready and waiting for when you hit level 50. This can allow you to put off getting a Relic weapon (especially if you get the item level 75 Mog weapon) until you are ready to upgrade the Zenith version.
If you have a static Binding Coil group, no doubt most (if not all) of your group should already be capped on equipment. I think it goes without saying that greed rolling item level 90 gear for your alts that would otherwise rot is a nice way to gear up.
Even without raiding The Binding Coil, you can still rapidly gear up your alt classes by using your main class in the dungeons listed above. I am doing this exact thing right now; when my Warrior is finished leveling in a few weeks, he will be using item level 75+ equipment as soon as he hits 50!