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15 Ways to prepare for FFXIV Dawntrail

Time to get all your chocobos in a row!

If you're preparing to get into Final Fantasy XIV Dawntrail and the expedition to Tural, it can be daunting to figure out what you need to catch up on (especially if you've taken a break from the game), so we've put together a comprehensive guide containing 15 ways to ready your characters.

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How to prepare for FFXIV Dawntrail

There are many different factors to consider when preparing for a new expansion like Dawntrail in Final Fantasy XIV, and it honestly comes down to your personal play style and your priorities in-game. Some players focus on challenging endgame content like Savage and Ultimate raids, while others may prefer to focus their efforts on crafting/gathering.

However, a good chunk of FFXIV's massive community enjoys the game with a broad stroke, meaning they seek out a good portion of everything and push their (battle-related) limits in moderation. In that light, while our guide is intended to help out any and every type of FFXIV player who needs a refresher, our preparation methods focus mostly on that "broad" demographic.

Max out your Endwalker tome currencies

Tomestone currency menu in Final Fantasy XIV
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When it comes to preparing for any new expansion in FFXIV, one of the most important things to do is max out all of your tomestone currencies for the ending expansion. In the case of Endwalker, it's Tomestones of Causality and Tomestones of Comedy.

As recently announced on The Lodestone, both of these tomes will be discontinued with the release of Dawntrail (7.0), so now is the time to completely fill up your tome coffers. The reason you want to is that both of these tomes will be exchangeable for either Poetics or, more importantly, the new tomestone currency that will debut at Dawntrail's launch.

Thankfully there are a variety of methods to boost both of these tomes. The most effective are of course daily Duty Roulettes and organized Endwalker/Shadowbringers hunt trains. Depending on your data center, there are Discord servers (e.g. Aether Hunts) available that schedule and post hunt trains that run virtually 24/7 across all game servers.

Run Treasure Maps for gil and valuable rewards

The Shifting Oubliettes instance in Final Fantasy XIV
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When it comes to new expansions in FFXIV, there will always be an avalanche of new items, practical and cosmetic, for players to discover and obtain for their characters. Whether it's crafted gear, the latest materia, or an irresistible new glamour, minion, or mount, having plenty of gil saved up to get what you want/need sooner is absolutely important.

The easiest method to potentially accrue loads of gil quickly is by diving into Treasure Maps. These can be obtained either by digging them up with a leveled Botanist or Miner in open world areas or by buying them off the Market Board. Be aware though that you can only dig up one of a certain type of map every 18 hours (real time).

The most recently released ones (Kumbhiraskin or Ophiotauroskin) are usually a priority, as they yield both generous sums of gil and the latest exclusive item rewards that you can either keep or sell for even more gil. However, if gil itself is all you care about, then older types of maps can do the trick as well, for flexibility.

Once you have some maps, make sure you have the 'Decipher' and 'Dig' actions unlocked, which will allow you to use them. Then either look for an existing Treasure Map group in Party Finder or make one yourself.

Finish your remaining MSQ for Endwalker

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This is probably the most obvious one on the list, but it's something that can still be easily overlooked if you shelve the MSQ for weeks or months to focus on other in-game activities. Remember that you can always check the reliable MSQ prompt in the top left corner of your screen, as it will show the name of the next quest you need to complete and where it's located.

Otherwise, you can also check the MSQ tab in your Journal (as seen above) to see what quests you might be missing from the expansion, if any. Make sure you're all caught up so that you don't find yourself confused on day one of Dawntrail and wondering why you can't start the new MSQ yet.

Catch up on incomplete trials, alliance raids, and normal raids

Euphrosyne alliance raid in Final Fantasy XIV
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With Endwalker now entirely finished, now is the best possible time to embark on any optional battle content you might have put aside at some point. This refers primarily to any of the Normal Raids or Alliance Raids you might have missed up to now, as these are not traditionally unlocked via the MSQ. In the case of Endwalker, there's the entire Pandaemonium raid series and the trio of Alliance Raids that include Aglaia, Euphrosyne, and Thaleia.

If you perchance missed any of the Normal or Alliance Raids in Shadowbringers or any other expansion, you can catch up on those as well. Not only are they all exciting to play, but they offer a fantastic variety of loot rewards, including gear sets, minions, orchestrions, and even occasionally a mount.

In addition, there's also the option of attempting the Extreme version of Endwalker's Primal Trials, which can be unlocked via the Wandering Minstrel (X:12.6, Y:14.2) in Old Sharlayan after completing the Normal versions of them. If you manage to clear them, they can yield not only tomes but also primal weapons, orchestrions, and even a chance at a mount.

Spring clean your inventory, retainers, and armoury chest

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Clearing out your character's inventory is one of the most tedious but most important tasks to do when preparing for a new expansion. New content means you'll be accruing a hefty amount of new items fairly quickly, and having sufficient space for all of them ahead of time will make the experience that much better.

Sort through everything in your inventory, discarding or selling what you won't need going forward, and storing away what you want to keep via your Armoire, Glamour Dresser, Retainers, etc. Keeping your main inventory as empty as possible is the endgame here.

With retainers, you'll want to unclog their inventories as well of anything you honestly don't need. You'll be passing a variety of new items on to them to hold or sell, so leaving them with plenty of open space is important.

Do the same for your Chocobo Saddlebag and especially your Armoury Chest. You'll be picking up new gear and weapons left and right during Dawntrail, so make sure you have the room to be able to equip them.

Max out your Bicolor Gemstones & Sacks of Nuts for Dawntrail vendors

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Bicolor Gemstones are like the little forgotten secret of FFXIV, as players tend to leave them behind after their Shared FATE ranks are maxed out. However, they're the key to unlocking some rare and even exclusive items via Gemstone Vendors, who can be found in places like Eulmore, Old Sharlayan, and Radz-at-Han.

Before Dawntrail sails in, you'll definitely want to consider capping your Bicolor Gemstones, so that you have plenty to spend at new Gemstone Vendors found across Tural. Bicolor Gemstones are obtained by farming FATEs in Shadowbringers and Endwalker open-world areas. It can be a little tedious to do it solo, so if you can get at least a couple of friends to help you out it can make the grind substantially easier.

Don't forget cap your Sacks of Nuts currency as well, as there will be new Nut vendors in Tural with new items to sell for them, including Dawntrail's new tier of Materia. This is especially important, as new materia is always astronomically expensive at the start of an expansion. This means you can either save a lot of gil by getting your own materia, or capitalize on the demand by selling it off.

Sacks of Nuts are obtained exclusively by completing A-Rank and S-Rank hunts in both Shadowbringers and Endwalker, so hop aboard local hunt trains whenever possible.

Stock up on Aetheryte Tickets and Grand Company Seals

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If you thought teleporting around Endwalker areas was expensive, it's probably going to be even worse when teleporting to and around the giant new continent of Tural. Teleports are one of the silent killers when it comes to a player's gil funds, and the key to avoiding that problem is Aetheryte Tickets. These essentially pay your way with each teleport, which saves you a lot of gil in the long run.

Aetheryte Tickets can be purchased by exchanging either Allied Seals or Centurio Seals, which are obtained via Hunt Bills or by defeating A-Rank Hunts in Heavensward and Stormblood open-world areas. Of the two, Centurio Seals is the better option as Stormblood hunt trains are also run regularly for this purpose.

Once you have a good pile of Seals, head to Foundation in Ishgard, then over to the Forgotten Knight tavern (teleport there from the main aetheryte) and speak to Ardolain who will offer Aetheryte Tickets for 5 x Centurio Seals/each. If you farm enough seals, you can wind up with stacks of 99 x Aetheryte Tickets, which will make your travels throughout Dawntrail a breeze.

Also, Grand Company Seals are especially important for restocking items such as Glamour Prisms and Ventures for your Retainers, so be sure to visit your Grand Company HQ and restock those if needed. If you're low on GC Seals you can complete some Expert Delivery Missions by selling off any excess gear items you don't need.

Make room in your Glamour Dresser

The glamour dresser in Final Fantasy XIV
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If you thought spring cleaning only applied to your inventory and retainers, it honestly also applies to your Glamour Dresser as well. If you ended up maxing out every single one of the current 800 slots in your Glamour Dresser, now would probably be a good time to go through your wardrobe and discard looks you don't see yourself wearing in the future.

Note that the Glamour Dresser's slot space will be expanded upon Dawntrail's launch, though it hasn't been specified yet exactly how much. Overall, the more space you have to play around with new looks with new gear and glamour from Dawntrail, the better. You'll thank yourself later once you're deep into the new content and able to put looks together more efficiently.

Also, as mentioned earlier, make sure you have plenty of Glamour Prisms stocked up for Dawntrail, as these are what allow you to place items in the Dresser itself.

Catch up on special content like Island Sanctuary, Eureka, and Variant Dungeons

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FFXIV has gone above and beyond over the years to provide an impressive variety of content for all types of players and now is as good a time as any to check out any special content you might have missed up to now. By special content we mean Island Sanctuary, the Forbidden Land of Eureka, the Bozjan Southern Front, and also the Variant/Criterion Dungeons.

Island Sanctuary is incredibly easy to get into, provided you've completed the "Endwalker" quest in MSQ. Simply speak to the Clueless Crier NPC in Old Sharlayan to get the "Seeking Sanctuary" quest and kick things off. From there you can start building a hub on your own island, catch and raise animals, and get a super variety of rewards along the way.

There's also the 'Field Operations' content, which refers to both Eureka and Bozja. These are special instanced areas with their own leveling system where you complete a fascinating questline, build unique weapons and gear, and can get a variety of other rewards that make it well worth the grind.

Finally, the Variant Dungeons (i.e. - Sil'dihn Subterrane, Mount Rokkon, Aloalo Island) are an exciting new type of dungeon content that encourages players to solve puzzles and find different paths to unlock special rewards that can be obtained inside the dungeon itself and from a special vendor as well. One of those rewards is an incredibly rare minion, so you definitely don't want to miss out.

Get an EXP boost for Dawntrail by pre-filling a Wondrous Tails book

Khloe Aliapoh in Final Fantasy XIV
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One of the biggest challenges when starting a new expansion in FFXIV is efficiently leveling your main job to handle all of the new battle content. However, there's an unspoken way to give yourself a head start in that regard that involves visiting Khloe Aliapoh (X:5.7, Y:6.1) in Idyllshire (as seen above).

The Tuesday before Dawntrail's launch, go and pick up a brand new Wondrous Tails book from her and fill it up with stickers as you normally would. However, don't turn the book over to her until after 7.0 starts, when the new Level 100 cap for all jobs unlocks. Once you're ready, make sure you have your desired main job equipped, and then turn the book in to Khloe.

Doing so will give you a hefty EXP boost, hopefully at least half a level to 91. It's an incredibly easy way to get a great head start on your leveling endeavors, and Wondrous Tails will be a reliable ally for that in the weeks to follow.

Prepare a tank or healer for clogged duty queues (if not Viper or Pictomancer)

White Mage attacks in Final Fantasy XIV
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If you're dead set on starting Dawntrail with either of the expansion's new jobs (Viper or Pictomancer), do be aware that since they're both DPS jobs, this will lead to exponentially longer queue times for Duty Roulettes, as plenty of other players are going to be doing the same.

If you want to avoid that issue altogether, the best answer is optimizing either a Tank or Healer job, as they are traditionally always in higher demand for duty queues. Make sure you have one leveled up to 90 with sufficient gear equipped and materia (IX or X) melded.

Alternatively, you can have a friend queue with you as a tank or healer to help speed things up, if you want to dip your toe into Viper or Pictomancer from day one.

Stock up low-level Materia to transmute into new Dawntrail Materia

Materia transmutation in Final Fantasy XIV

We mentioned earlier that Materia is one of the most valuable items to get your hands on at the very start of an expansion in FFXIV. When melded properly, Materia gives your gear a significant power and viability boost, and literally every ounce of that power counts when starting brand-new battle content. To be resilient enough as a tank, do enough damage as a DPS, or have enough restorative power as a healer, Materia is imperative.

That is precisely why new materia is always outrageously expensive at the start of a new expansion, and it will be the same for Dawntrail. To avoid bankrupting yourself on buying enough for one or two gear sets, finding ways to obtain the materia yourself is the best course.

One of the best ways is by transmuting materia, which you can do by visiting the goblin named Mutamix Bubblypots (seen above) in Central Thanalan at (X:23.7, Y:13.6). You need to first complete the Level 19 'Marvelously Mutable Materia' quest, which can be picked up from Kokosamu (X:23.8, Y:14.2) nearby.

Once that's done, you can transmute materia by giving Bubblypots any five materia from your inventory. Once transmuted, you'll receive a new materia that's different in tier from any you initially gave.

In that case, if you give him five IX or X-tier materia to transmute after Dawntrail launches, chances are that you'll get a brand new XI or XII-tier materia in return. So to take full advantage of this tactic, stock up on as much materia as possible before Dawntrail, and once 7.0 is live take it all to Bubblypots for transmuting. You may very well end up with a serious pile of new materia at little to no cost.

Keep building up MGP for potential new rewards

The Gold Saucer in Final Fantasy XIV
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Even though the latest Make It Rain campaign is now over, that doesn't mean that you should stop visiting the Gold Saucer to rack in more MGP. There are plenty of ways to go about doing so, from doing your daily Mini-Cactpots in Entrance Square to the various GATEs that occur every 20 minutes throughout the Gold Saucer. If you do enough of those, you can simultaneously complete a weekly GATE challenge that rewards you with even more MGP.

Most importantly, however, make sure to participate in the weekly Fashion Report, which asks players to don a certain look based on a few hints. Even if your look doesn't remotely match up with the requirements, you can still get a minimum of 10,000 MGP. However, if you get a minimum score of 80, you'll get 50,000 MGP.

There are various tools online for nailing the perfect look, from where to get the necessary gear items to the qualifying dyes you can use to color them, so be sure to seek those out.

All in all, the more MGP you have for Dawntrail, the more prepared you'll be for any and all new MGP rewards that can potentially be added.

Boost jobs with Tales of Adventure items from Mog Station

A job boost for Dark Knight from Final Fantasy XIV
Image via Square Enix

If there are any jobs in FFXIV you haven't leveled that you suddenly feel inclined to add to your roster before Dawntrail, there is of course the issue of getting that leveling done in time. Thankfully, there's a very practical solution for that in the form of Tales of Adventure job boosts, which can be bought on the Mog Station store.

When bought and used, these items essentially allow you to instantly boost a specific job (DoW or DoM) up to a certain level (now a max of Level 80) and also provide a set of job-specific gear and accessories to help get you started.

These are incredibly handy for such circumstances, so if you're itching to get a certain job leveled up for Dawntrail, this might be a great strategy to consider.

Stock up color dyes for Dawntrail's dual-dye update

The marketboard in Final Fantasy XIV
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Finally, you'll definitely want to make sure that you have a good amount of color dyes stocked in your inventory, as FFXIV's Dawntrail will finally unlock a new dual-dye feature for a vast variety of the game's gear and glamour items. In other words, gear pieces will have two dye channels instead of one, allowing you to add more colorful dimension to your looks.

Dyes are first and foremost obtainable via the Market Board, and while most basic dyes are decently affordable, the more popular pastels and metallics can get somewhat pricey. Pure White, Jet Black, and Pastel Pink in particular are notoriously the most expensive dyes, as they often go for six-figure prices per pot.

To avoid those gil pitfalls, you can also buy pots of special dyes like those on the Mog Station store. You can either buy individual pots of dye or a set of 10 pots of a specific color.

Be sure to check out all of our latest guides and news for Final Fantasy XIV, such as All FFXIV job changes & new abilties in Dawntrail.

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Stephanie Watel
Stephanie Watel is a freelance writer for Pro Game Guides. Stephanie has been with the site for a few months, and in the games media industry for about a year. Stephanie typically covers the latest news and a variety of gaming guides for the site, and loves gardening and being the bird lady of the neighborhood. She has a BA in Writing from Pace University in NY.

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15 Ways to prepare for FFXIV Dawntrail

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