ESO crafting guide - learn about all the crafting professions!
ESO guide to crafting
Welcome in our ESO guide to crafting. Crafting is a crucial element of many MMORPGs. Elder Scrolls Online is no different and it has a reasonably developed crafting system. It’s definitely not the most complex one in the genre, but it still might get a little confusing at times. Especially considering that many inexperienced players choose ESO as their first MMORPG and rightfully so. The game is pretty forgiving and doesn’t put a lot of barriers in front of the new players.
Table of contents
Crafting professions in ESO
Let’s start with some general information. Currently, there are seven crafting professions in ESO. To craft anything you have to go to a crafting station. They can be found all across the Tamriel in numerous different cities. They are usually located in the stores connected to the professions. To partake in alchemy, you’re going to have to visit an apothecary, blacksmithing station will usually be at a smithy or a forge.
You can find a clothing station at a clothier or a smithy, jewelry crafting stations are less consistent, but you should be able to find them in bigger cities. To create glyphs through enchanting, you have to visit a chironasium. To cook something at a provisioning station you’re going to have to visit an inn or a camp and finally, the woodworking stations are located at the carpentries.
To master a certain crafting profession, you’re going to have to spend some skill points on it. Maxing out all of them will definitely take a long time, so it might be a good idea to specialize in one or two at the beginning. ESO focuses on horizontal progression which means that, for example, you can max out alchemy fairly quickly, but maxing out all the crafting professions, while possible on a single character, requires some more hours and effort put into the game.
In general, it can be a good idea to have an alternative character to be your dedicated craftsman. Every Skill Point your main character spends on crafting is Skill Point that’s not spent on combat abilities. Eventually, when you get close to the CP cap it doesn’t matter that much, but it’s going to be a seriously long time before you get there, so take that under your consideration.
It’s also important to start developing your crafter before your main gets to CP160. At that moment you want to have maxed out every desired trait on every piece of equipment you’re going to use. If it’s possible, start gathering necessary materials. The quicker you gear up after hitting CP160, the better.
Crafting Writs are repeatable quests focused on respective crafting professions. They reset every 20 hours and can be done again. They’re a really important part of developing those skill lines as well as profiting from crafting after you’re maxed out.
To unlock Crafting Writs you have to get certified first. There’s a separate certification for every profession. It’s actually really easy to do, just go to the nearest Writ Board and then to a certification trainer. You will have to complete a very simple crafting quest that acts as a tutorial for the profession in question. Make sure your character is at least level 6, because it’s a requirement to get certified.
There are two categories of crafting professions, equipment crafting (blacksmithing, clothing, jewelry crafting and woodworking) which is trained by the Fighters Guild trainer and consumables crafting (alchemy, enchanting and provisioning), that you can learn from the Mages Guild trainer.
The quests themselves, similarly to the certification process, are really simple. You receive them at the Writ Boards. Their objectives are always pretty similar, you have to craft a certain item and bring it to the proper NPC and that’s it. The required items will vary based on your level in the adequate crafting skill line.
The rewards are actually really worthwhile, especially for quests that are so simple. They include materials, gold, experience, crafting inspiration (that can be used for leveling the crafting skills) as well as Survey Reports - special maps, which will show you locations where you will be able to gather some materials quicker.
To get some perspective on how valuable those rewards are, it’s important to note that numerous players have multiple alternative characters, devoted entirely to crafting, only for the possibility of completing Crafting Writs and getting the rewards multiple times in one day. It’s just another example of ZeniMax trying to encourage players to take part in lots of daily content, by making it very rewarding.
Research and Traits
If you’re interested in equipment crafting, you’re going to have to research a lot of items. Researching a piece of equipment destroys it and takes some time, but in return, it grants you the inspiration points which we already talked about and the ability to craft this kind of item with this specific trait.
There are a lot of Traits and item types in ESO. Maxing out everything will definitely take a lot of time. We recommend focusing on the most useful PvE traits at the beginning. The Training Trait is important, because it increases the experience gains. Some other Traits worth considering are: Infused, Nirnhoned, Powered, Precise, Sharpened and Impenetrable. In general the Training Trait is recommended for grinding EXP and CP, as for the other ones it would be best to read some other guides and decide which one is optimal for you in different situations. Often DPS will make use of some other traits than a tank or a healer.
It’s important to remember that raw materials have to be refined into proper crafting ingredients. Crafting Stations have the “Refinement” option, but it will often consume some of the materials, so make sure you have a surplus.
There are some things to consider while spending Skill Points on the crafting professions. If you’re struggling with collecting enough materials, make sure you level up the Keen Eye skills. It’s also important to invest in the skills that allow you to research multiple items at the same and those that reduce the overall research time. It will significantly accelerate your crafting progression.
Let’s face it, looks matter in Elder Scrolls Online and it’s something you’re going to have to keep in mind while crafting. To create an item in the certain style, you’re going to need the matching motif and a Style Gem. This is an entirely cosmetic feature, but when you’re crafting yourself an armor set anyway, why not make it look cool?
So you have an almost perfect item, but it has a Trait that’s not exactly the most useful to you? If only there was a possibility to do something about it. Luckily, ZeniMax introduced transmutation in the Clockwork City DLC. You just have to visit said city and go to the Transmutation Station. Of course you have to research the desired trait on the proper type of item first. It will also cost some Transmutation Crystals.
When your character will get advanced in crafting, you will be able to use Set Crafting Stations. They allow you to create weapons and armor elements with certain set bonuses. All they require is researching certain Traits beforehand. Set bonuses are a completely separate thing from the item styles.
Let’s take a look at all the crafting professions in Elder Scrolls Online and talk about the quickest and most optimal methods to level them up.
Alchemy is a consumable crafting profession that allows you to create potions which restore your health, magicka, stamina or grant some bonuses and poisons which apply extra effects on your weapons. We will mostly focus on potion crafting here, because we believe it’s the more useful part of alchemy.
The skills that we recommend leveling out first are Keen Eye, Medicinal Use, Laboratory Use and Chemistry. Keen Eye makes it easier to collect reagents. Medicinal Use prolongs the duration of potions which makes you spend less money on potions in general. Laboratory Use allows you to create more complex potions and poisons and Chemistry let’s you craft more consumables.
It’s a good idea to complete the Botanist and Toxicologist achievements, because this way you discover all the Alchemy Traits. After you do that make sure you never try to craft any “Unknown” potions, because it would result in losing the ingredients.
This profession allows crafting metal weapons and heavy armor pieces, so make sure to develop it, if your character is going to use any of that, as long as you’re playing a Dragonknight or a Templar, investment in blacksmithing will be necessary.
These are the skills that you’re going to want to level up fast. Once again, Keen Eye to collect materials easily. Metal Extraction to increase the chances of obtaining Style and Trait Gems while researching items. Metal Working unlocks more advanced materials. Finally Metallurgy let’s you research multiple items at the same time and accelerates the research time.
To level up Blacksmithing as fast as possible it’s important to collect all the items with valuable traits and save them for research. Always deconstruct all the items with the Intricate Trait, because they give you extra Inspiration Points. Just make sure you don’t research any items with the Ornate Trait. You can’t learn it anyway and those items are very expensive, so it’s better to sell them. Those points about deconstructing items will carry on to every equipment crafting profession.
Another profession that’s focused on crafting armor elements, this time the medium and light ones. Make sure you’re proficient in clothing if you’re playing Nightblade or Sorcerer.
The skill progression is almost identical as in blacksmithing, the skills basically do the same things, just for light and medium armor. As usual we’re going to put some points in Keen Eye, to get as much materials as possible. Unraveling improves the chance of getting Style/Trait Gems. Tailoring provides access to better materials and Stitching improves your research capabilities regarding light and medium armor.
This skill line is responsible for producing glyphs, special consumables that can be used to add extra effects on different parts of equipment. The ingredients needed to craft them are runestones. Knowing what runestone to use in every situation is an important part of enchanting.
As an enchanter you only want to max out three skills. Aspect Extraction will allow you to get more runestones while researching glyphs. Potency Improvement lets you use stronger potency runes. Finally, Aspect Improvement gradually unlocks Denata, Rekuta and Kuta runes that allow for crafting respectively Superior, Artifact and Legendary glyphs, coded by the blue, purple and gold colors. It’s the only profession that doesn’t require investing in the Keen Eye skill.
Enchanting has some unique mechanics that you have to understand if you want to get good at it. There are three kinds of runestones: Potency Runes, Essence Runes and Aspect Runes. Potency Runes are responsible for the strength of an effect. They are divided into 16 tiers and they can be additive or subtractive. The Essence Runes determine the kind of effect that the glyph will bring. They decide whether a glyph will be suitable for weapons, armor or jewelry. There are additive and subtractive Essence Runes. At last, Aspect Runes are responsible for the quality of the crafted glyphs. The important thing is to remember that if you don’t have the max level gear, you shouldn’t enchant it with legendary glyphs. The Kuta runes are too valuable and it’s simply not worth it to use them on weak items.
It’s the newest crafting profession in ESO, since it was introduced in May 2018. It allows for creating necklaces and rings.
Here are the skills you should max out first. As usual, Keen Eye will increase your gathering gains. Jewelry Extraction increases the chances of getting Style/Trait Gems. Lapidary Research makes research faster. Platings Expertise makes it easier to succeed while upgrading jewelry and Engraver unlocks more advanced materials.
If you want to become a cook or a brewer, provisioning is the profession for you. It lets you craft consumables that will temporary increase your statistics related to health, magicka and stamina.
This skill line has a one very important skill for every character that wants to level up as fast as possible. Connoisseur increases the duration of every drink you consume, which is extra important since the Psijic Ambrosia is a drink that gives 50% extra experience gains. It’s very expensive, so getting the extra duration out of it would be recommended.
There are also some other important skills in this line. Gourmand works similarly, but with food you ate. Chef and Brewer increase the amount of food and drinks that you craft. Recipe Quality and Recipe Improvement allow you to use better and more advanced recipes.
This profession is responsible for crafting bows, staves and shields. It’s a pretty versatile collection of item types that will be useful for most of the ESO classes.
Obviously we’re going to recommend taking Keen Eye, to get more materials. Wood Extraction is good to obtain Style/Trait Gems and resins. Woodworking unlocks better materials. Carpentry is great for accelerating research. Resin Expertise increases the chance to improve wooden items with resins.
There are four kinds of resins, starting from the weakest one: pitch, turpen, mastic and rosin. They can be used to upgrade certain items at the woodworking stations.
The last crafting profession we’re going to talk about is somewhat exclusive to advanced players. It’s furniture crafting. Players can buy housing in Elder Scrolls Online and those houses have to be furnished. These items require special plans to be created. The unique thing about them is that they often demand the crafter to be proficient in multiple fields. Housing is mostly an endgame content though.
That should do it for a beginners guide to all the kinds of crafting in Elders Scrolls Online. Of course there’s much more in-depth knowledge to find about the specific professions and different skill progressions. What we presented in this text is definitely not the only correct way to approach crafting in ESO, but it’s a good and accessible way of getting started with it. And once again, remember to do the Crafting Writs it’s the most important thing in this guide, so make sure you keep that in mind.