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Vysala's Rules To Cook By

I present to you, in no particular order, Vysala's Rules to Cook By.

  • Cooking is all about cents in a penny bank. Rarely will you see large dollar bills, but when you look into the piggy bank as a whole, you will find large amounts of accumulated money. Exert research, time and patience and you will find this craft to be low risk and high gil profit.

  • Vysala and Lordmonkey Farming Elementals
  • Keep up to date with the latest news and future updates in FFXI. New recipes are added all the time. It is important to grab up these recipes and get your product out there for the highest profit possible. Usually because the item is in short demand people will be willing to pay very high prices to be the first to get to try out the item. This is a high profit, short time business game and it can be risky. It’s best to tread carefully and not to synth in too high quantities. If the item fails to sell then you may end up with your entire inventory unsold. If this happens it is best to keep some in storage for a later date or try to sell them from a mule.

  • If you are listing an item that has never been sold (at any AH) sell the item to yourself for the amount of gil you would like the item to sell for. It is best to take the amount of money it takes to make the item and double that. Listing an item for an insane price like 1 million when you know you only paid 800 gil for the entire recipe is not likely to result in a sale. Other people do pay attention to what goes into recipes, so be smart. If it took 4k to make, list it for 7k or 8k. Chances are it will sell for at least that price if the item is useful.

  • The rule of supply and demand; less listings means more profit for you. List only one or two of your items at a single AH, do not over crowd a single item market or other crafters will see the amount listed and assume they must undercut severely to get a sale. And they will - and because of this the overall price will fall.

  • If you find yourself making a lot of a certain recipe and there is a crafting material that is made by another craft used in the recipe - like how Rolanberry Pies use Gelatin from bonecrafters - price out the item in the other craft to see if it is profitable to make it on your own. If it is, I suggest leveling the other craft if you can, that way you can lower your initial investment cost on one of your best sellers.

  • Try to make items where most of the materials, or the most expensive materials, are bought from merchants. While AH prices fluctuate, NPC prices rarely change save for when they are reduced due to gaining Fame.

  • Vysala the Puppetmaster with Nutcracker
  • Farm your own crystals if the AH prices are over priced. The best way to do this is by farming Elementals. Elementals are the best mobs to farm for crystals for many reasons: most mobs only drop single crystals whereas elementals drop at least one cluster (resulting in 12 crystals); you do not have to be able to gain XP from the elemental to get the drop (as is such with single crystal dropping mobs); you can farm any elemental and always get at least one cluster drop no matter the conquest results or level difference between you and the elemental. If you can not efficiently farm the crystals you need, farm another type to sell that will pay for the type you want.

  • Do not purchase all of your cooking materials from the Windurst AH. Farmers take advantage of the Cooking Guild presence and often times price hike certain high-demand items used in cooking. That is one of the reasons it is important to look at every AH for pricing.

  • Know your foods. If you make a food commonly used by a high level mage, there is a chance it will sell better in Jeuno then any other location. do not bother listing your items in locations where the sales are so slow you might have to re-list. This goes for quest items too. Mary’s Milk will sell best in San d’Oria because it is only used in a quest available in San d’Oria. Also keep in mind where the AH is located in: the Whitegate AH is linked to the Jeuno AH, the Norg AH is linked to the Bastok AH, the Kazham AH is linked to the Windurst AH, and the Rabao AH is linked to the San d’Oria AH. Get to know quests, towns and crafting guilds so you will always have some idea generally where to sell your items so they might find their best audience.

  • Low on inventory space? If you have a good friend that you trust or another account, you could have another character hold some of your ingredients or product while you synth. This character could also help transfer items to your mule, that way you can avoid the limitation of the delivery system.

  • Vysala with Charmed Sabotender
  • List fast selling items along with slow selling items at the AH, that way you always have some sales moving while others have time to sell. This way you have a constant flow of sales income.

  • If a particular item is being listed in bulk and it is a slow seller, chances are the price will fall. If the price falls to the point you are barely making any profit, simply get out of that market. do not drive the price lower by undercutting so your items sell. This hurts your future business and ruins the entire market for that item. It can take weeks for some markets to repair after this sort of thing and occasionally some markets never recover.

  • Do not get attached to one synth so much that you depend on it - never put all your eggs in one basket. It is great to have reliable sales, however you must know when to sell and when to move on. Choose multiple items for profit and list a mix of your results at the AH. Relying only on one item could break you if the market bombs. Expect all markets to bomb eventually so tread lightly in each of them, so that you always have alternative sales for income. Even if you have been making a single item for over six months there is always a chance someone will come in and crash your market. Treat your market with respect and put your left over items on a mule and concentrate your efforts on another item until the old market recovers. Once they recover slowly move back into that market, listing very few items at a time to test the waters.

  • If you have an item that sells pretty reliably off of mules and the AH at the same time, make that item in bulk. Empty your inventory as much as you can and gather up the materials you need. Take as many rounds (synths in sets of 12) at a time as you can before you must mail your product to mules and refill your inventory with materials. I find that HQing occurs more after you have been synthing for extended sessions verses 1-2 item synths at a time.

  • Synth in 12’s. Crystals are stacked to 12 and so are most crafting materials. It is also more often financially wiser to buy in stacks verses singles. Often singles are over priced verses the division price of 12 on the stack for the same item. Of course do not ever assume the - it never hurts to take a moment to compare singles verses stacks just in case.

  • Synth in bulk if you have the mules and inventory space. Synthing in large amounts will allow you to go a few days without synthing, depending on sales. Once you fill your auction slots and mule inventory, be sure to fill your mog house space on your mules too. Having items in the mog house and ready to stock helps save time so you can hurry up and put your items up for sale allowing you to play other parts of the game while maintaining a constant flow of sales income.

  • Need a rare item that you can not farm and is rarely sold at the AH? Keep a list of these items and every day look for them. Build them up over time, sending each single off to a mule. Once you have obtained the desired amount, then go about crafting it. do not do single synths unless you are testing the waters of a market or you need the item right away. As mentioned, I find that HQing occurs more after you have been synthing for extended sessions verses 1-2 item synths at a time.

  • Farming Cockatrice Meat to Synth into Mithkabobs
  • Solo Play: If you are a Beastmaster or Summoner or another job that tends to do a whole lot of soloing, you have a strong advantage as a cook. If you need to fight a certain level of mob, do your research and see if any of the mob options drop materials you can use for your craft. This way you get to farm and level all at the same time.

  • NPC Buddy Leveling: If you tend to level your NPC buddy, try to target mobs that will advance your NPC buddy at the same time as dropping items you will find useful in cooking.

  • Do not choose markets where only the High Quality version of a good sells. You will only HQ a very small percentage of the time on most recipes. Unless the HQ is a very good sale and you want to vender sell your NQ’s, try to find a good balance so that you can move all of your product through the AH and/or a mule.

  • Mix your knowledge of quests with your knowledge of cooking. For example San d’Oria and Bastok both have Mini-Avatar Fights NPCs within the towns. So it would be a wise to list Yagudo Drinks in these towns because Summoners buy these in bulk for these fights.

  • Do not be afraid to take a chance. If you want to try a new market, try it! Just make only a few items in that market to test the waters. You never do know, people might really be looking to buy that item but they do not because no one is making it. Make the AH work for you. Search through all of the cooking categories and take note of items that have great effects but with no listings. You could be the next owner of that market. Tread carefully, but take chances.

  • When you are deciding to make an item, be sure to weigh the costs and profit along with your time spent. If it takes you more than two hours to gather materials you may want to analyze the situation and see if this is really the amount of time you want to spend. If it is, be sure to test the market first. If it works out, buy all of your materials in bulk so you can have longer synthing sessions and a backup of products to sell, that way you do not need to invest more time than needed in this product with more crafting sessions than you need.

  • Pay attention to trends and fads, but do not let them overtake your solid foundation. Trends and fads die quickly and in the end you are left with your experience and knowledge of reliable markets. Be prepared to move in and out of fad markets very fast - do not make the product in overly huge bulk amounts just in case the fad dies faster than you expect. Use smaller crafting sessions to take advantage of these markets, so when the market dies you are not left with more inventory then you can get rid of.

  • Yhoater Jungle
  • If you can make more being the supplier of a high demand ingredient instead of the final product - go for the ingredient! This can be the case in several high demand items such as pie dough (as some crafters do not bother to save their product along the way for use in other recipes). These also make great filler items when some of your more reliable items may have dropped in profit and you are waiting for them to return to their previous price.

  • If you like chocobo digging, it is a good opportunity to find many items that will be of good use in your cooking. It takes a whole lot of chocobo digging to get many items, but chances are if you are digger then you will be digging a whole lot anyways.

  • Most importantly - really get interested in your craft, read all of the recipes and familiarize yourself with the most common ingredients and all of the merchants valuable to your craft. Do not view your craft it as just a means to get gil. Craft those strange items that never get listed just for fun and to give them away as gifts. Craft for customers, craft for yourself, craft to make gifts for friends with signable crystals, craft for enjoyment and have fun! Enjoy your culinary career.