Once you hit level 50 in Final Fantasy XIV, there is a surprising amount of end-game content and tiers of equipment already in the game. These tiers are currently not very defined for players, and players are able to access dungeons way above their current gear level.
This end game guide will lay out the proper path for progression once you hit level 50 in Final Fantasy 14. Of course, you can probably jump ahead sooner if you are running with a dedicated Linkshell or Free Company. This guide will help you know whether or not you qualify when someone is looking for “geared” members for a particular dungeon.
If you join pick up groups without proper gear, no one will be too pleased. You can ruin a run if you do not have the proper gear in FFXIV. Many fights feature unavoidable AoE damage, so if your health is too low, you will die frequently. Healers without enough capacity will run out of mana. Many fights are DPS races, so if your DPS gear is not tuned to the content, you will lose the battle.
One good thing about all these tiers of content is that your gear upgrades are actually very significant. When you go from one dungeon set to the next, you will find the pieces are huge upgrades from the previous iteration. This makes it a bit less painful to hit 50 and gear up for a dungeon only to use that gear to clear another dungeon to get a different set of gear!
Where to Go At Level 50 in FFXIV – First Class
If you have not already, before you step foot in anything end-game related you should level up your class’s support jobs to unlock all of the good abilities needed. For example, a Bard needs to level Lancer to 34 to unlock Blood for Blood and Pugilist to level 12 for Internal Release at a minimum. These two damage-dealing timers significantly improve the Bard’s damage output – you will want them for all level 50 content. Check your class forums on the official boards and I am sure you will find specific recommendations for each class.
Once you have finished leveling up your support jobs and are ready to go back to your main, the first step is to put together a decent starting level 50 set. You should look to buy a level 50 weapon off the auction house (or 47-49 if you cannot afford the 50 version) as well as some level 47+ green equipment for your earring, necklace, wrist, and ring slots. Check your Grand Company rewards as well for any gear that they may have that is better then what you are wearing. The best items depend on your company and your class. The high level rings and earrings tend to be particularly good.
There is more expensive level 50 gear available on the auction house, but save your money. Crafted gear is only good when materia is equipped, and materia is extremely expensive. The dungeon gear we will talk about in a bit will be much better and much easier to get.
Now that you have your starter set, we are ready to jump into end game content.
Tiers of Equipment
- Item level 50: Starting Gear
- Item level 55: More expensive crafted gear and green drops from Amdapor Keep. The ring is particularly valuable here, as there is only 1 Darklight ring for each class but two 2 ring slots.
- Item level 60: Ifrit Weapons
- Item level 70: Darklight Gear, Garuda and Titan weapon drops
- Item level 80: Relic Weapon
- Item Level 90: Relic Weapon +1, Artifact Armor 2, Hero’s Accessories, Allagan Gear.
Darklight Gear is earned by trading Tomestones of Philosophy (discussed below) to Auriana in Revenant’s Toll in Mor Dhona. Ifrit, Garuda, and Titan weapons are earned by beating the respective bosses. Relic Weapons are earned by completing the Relic Weapon Quest. Relic Weapon +1 is unlocked at the cost of 900 Tomestones of Mythology and your original Relic Weapon. Artifact Armor 2 and Hero’s accessories are earned by trading Tomestones of Mythology to Auriana as well. Allagan gear drops in the Binding Coil dungeon.
Now that you know all the tiers in game, we will now discuss the best way to progress through these tiers. To restate the previous point, you can get carried through the content, but pick up groups in particular will not be pleased by your gear if you join a dungeon before you are ready. It is one thing to be new to a fight, but it is another thing altogether to be new and undergeared. Your friends may carry you through a dungeon, but random groups will not want to do it!
Video Summary of FFXIV End Game
Steps for End Game Progression in FFXIV
Here is the proper (and most efficient) method for progressing through end game content in FFXIV.
Step 1: Baseline Gear, Classes, and Story Line
As mentioned earlier, you will want to piece together a set of mostly level 50 auction house items and Grand Company gear in order to get ready for level 50. The whole thing should not cost more than 20 or 30k gil, and you should have plenty to spare.
Additionally, if you have not yet already, complete the main story line all the way up to the Ifrit quest. You should be able to complete all the dungeons using the Duty Finder – no real groups required.
Step 2: Kill Ifrit and then Farm Him for Weapons
While Ifrit is the first hard primal battle, he is actually quite easy. You can just join the Duty Finder and the vast majority of groups will kill him on the first try. Each time you kill Ifrit, you will get 10 Tomestones of Philosophy, 4 Tomestones of Mythology, and 1 rare item level 60 weapon.
You will want to get this weapon as soon as you can. Sometimes it takes 10 or 20 kills, but the Duty Finder timer for this dungeon is not bad even for DPS, and he is easy enough that most Duty Finder groups have no problem taking him out.
Getting an Ifrit Weapon may seem time consuming, but if you are a DPS class, you will not be welcome in a Titan run without at least an Ifrit Weapon. You need to kill Titan in order to progress in the main story and unlock your Relic Weapon, so you might as well get it out of the way early.
Step 3: Run Castrum Meridianum Repeatedly
Your next step in progression is to run Castrum Meridianum over and over again. While this dungeon does not drop any gear, each completion results in 100 Tomestones of Philosphy. Additionally, this dungeon is very easy and relatively quick to run. Speed runs can knock it out in 30 minutes, whereas even the slowest Dungeon Finder groups finish in about 45 minutes.
This dungeon will be your home for awhile. Run it 20-25 times and you will wind up with 3-7 pieces of Darklight Gear (exchange the tomestones with Auriana).
One good strategy is to level up a Warrior or a Paladin in order to get fast dungeon finder queues. You do not need great gear to clear this dungeon. You can clear it with low quality gear and you can do a 30 minute speed run with a starter 50 set and a couple pieces of Darklight! You can then use those fast Tomestones to gear out your main class.
Step 4: Kill Garuda
With a couple pieces of Darklight Gear and an Ifrit weapon, your gear will be more than adequate to kill Garuda, the next part of the storyline. Garuda is a bit tougher than Ifrit, and many Dungeon Finder groups are undergeared or unprepared for the encounter. However, you will still find decent groups here that are able to clear it. As time goes on, these groups will improve as people become more familiar with the fight.
It is good to at least learn the fight in Duty Finder so that you can join farm groups later. You will have the gear by this point, and farming Garuda is a decent way to possibly get a weapon upgrade and earn Tomestones of Mythology at the same time. Do not try to farm Garuda in Duty Finder though – you need a good group to make this a reliable source of tomestones.
Step 5: Start Your Relic Weapon Quest
Nedrick Ironheart in Vesper Bay is the NPC you use to start your Relic Weapon quest. Technically you can start it at level 50, but there is no point since you have to clear Titan and Amdapor Keep to unlock the weapon, both of which are not doable (without being carried) by fresh level 50s.
Complete the initial quests and kill the Chimera and head to step #6.
Step 6: Clear Amdapor Keep
With your Ifrit (or Garuda) Weapon and 3-5 pieces Darklight gear, you will have no problem clearing Amdapor Keep. Just make sure your groupmates have similar gear as well and it will be no problem. You may want to run the dungeon once or twice in Duty Finder just to get a good idea of what the fights are like before joining a speed run group. I have had no problem clearing this dungeon with Duty Finder groups.
Amdapor Keep allows you to progress in the Relic Weapon quest and provides good rewards. It also provides a large number of Tomestones of Mythology, which are needed to get the top tier gear in the game.
Step 7: Run Amdapor Keep, Castrum Meridianum, or Garuda
From here, you will want to farm another piece or two of Darklight Gear. If you can find a Garuda farm group, you can do this as well. Getting the Garuda weapon is nice but not required. Garuda is not a bad source of Tomestones of Mythology if you get a good farming group running, though if you have to use the Duty Finder I prefer Amdapor Keep.
It is good to start earning your Tomestones of Mythology early, since the amount you can earn is capped and only resets once each week. Amdapoor Keep provides these in large numbers, but you can hit the cap quick if you have good gear. In the long run it will be actually faster if you can get a head start on your Tomestones of Mythology.
Do not waste too much time farming Garuda though if you do not have a good group. Amdapor Keep is your priority to max out Tomestones of Mythology for the week. After that, if you want to work towards more Darklight Gear, run Castrum Meridianum.
You will want to stay here until you have mostly a full Darklight set. Save your Tomestones of Mythology for Relic +1. Once you have full Darklight (or close to it), you can proceed to the next step.
Step 8: Catch Up on your Relic Quest
If you have not already, make sure you continue on your Relic Weapon quest. Kill the Chimera, run Amdapor Keep, kill the required beastmen and defeat the Hydra. You will also have to re-kill Ifrit and Garuda once to get to the Titan phase of the quest.
Step 9: Kill Titan
Killing Titan is the next part of both the main storyline, He is much harder than the previous bosses, especially from a gear perspective (particularly for DPS). You need to be able to put out a large amount of damage in order to finish the fight before the last phase ends.
I would recommend using Duty Finder just to learn the fight. Odds are you will not kill him in a Duty Finder group (though some have). Once you have learned the fight, join or put together a good party on your local server for best results.
Step 10: Unlock Your Relic Weapon
Even with Titan down, you need 900 Tomestones of Philosophy to finish off the Relic Weapon quest. Farm Castrum Meridianum for the Tomestones and get your Relic Weapon.
Step 11: Farm Amdapor Keep or Garuda
With a full set of Darklight gear (or close to it) and your relic weapon, speed runs of Amdapor Keep will be your best bet for maxing our your Tomestones of Mythology for the week.
You will need 900 Tomestones (3 weeks worth) in order to get your Relic Weapon +1. This should be your first purchase given that it is such a high item level upgrade over the level 70 relic. After that, you can start getting gear pieces. Eventually, you will want the full set, as this is currently the best gear in game. It can take months though given the Mythology cap each week! Some players have a lot of gear though as sometimes the reset timer triggers early – there were times around release where it reset twice in a day!
You can also farm Garuda for weapons for your alternate jobs. If you have a good group, you can kill Garuda 5-6 times in an hour for 35-42 Tomestones of Mythology – not bad at all, particularly given that Amdapor Keep often has very long queues.
Step 12: The Binding Coil of Bahamut
The Binding Coil drops Allagan gear and is the home of Bahamut, which is the next step in the main story quest. Drops from this dungeon so far appear to be on par with Artifact Armor 2. This is an 8 man dungeon and currently the hardest in the game. You will likely want a dedicated group you can play with regularly if you are thinking about progressing through this dungeon.
You will also want to try to get as much Relic +1 and AF2 gear as you can to make this dungeon easier. Full Darklight is a must.
To summarize this guide, here is the current state of end-game progression in FFXIV: Starter Gear –> Darklight / Ifrit Weapon –> Garuda –> Amdapor Keep –> More Darklight –> Titan –> Relic +1 –> Binding Coil / Work on AF2.
If you want to really make this efficient, quickly grind to the point where you can farm Amdapor Keep. Once here, you can take a much more casual approach and just max out your Tomestones of Mythology each week. That can be done in just 4 or 5 hours of playing with a good group.
The next dungeon addition will be Crystal Tower, a “not hard content” 24 man dungeon. We will see what sort of gear this drops and update this guide accordingly.