[/em prepares to be voted below the depths of sub-default]
This has bugged me for a long, long, long time, so here it goes:
Why Farming Your Own Materials is NOT Free:
A Lesson in the Economics of Cooking
So you've got your shiny new craft skill to epic levels. The gils are at the tips of your fingers, and you know how to get it.
"All I need to do is farm/fish my own mats and I will make a killing!"
Slow down there, buckaroo. It's pencil/paper time, cause you are about to dump all those crafting levels down the toilet.
Lesson #1: TIME IS MONEY
Every second you spend in game making gil you are running your own corporation. You need to find the way for your character to maximize their gil potential per hour.
If you think crafting is it, then go for it. CRAFT.
Crafting not for you? Like to kill!? Go for it. FARM.
Running bothers you? Watching TMNT part 2 on TV and want to focus more on that? Go for it. FISH.
Want to do all three??? Well guess what! You are about to cost yourself some major gils. Let's explore why.
Lesson #2: DIVISION OF LABOR
As we just explained, time is money. Every second you spend earning gil you are running your corporation with your character. If you choose to ignore the AH and farm/fish your own mats, you could be doing yourself a major disservice. Let's explore further.
I am going to look specifically at 3 very popular craft items for cooking. You can attribute what I have said to just about every other craft and item and find one that works best for you. In all cases if I er it will be on the side of the CRAFTER, never the FARMER/FISHERMAN (you will see why below). Also I will ignore AH fees for ALL items.
DIVIDE YOUR LABOR!
You are a level 100 fisherman AND a lvl ??? Cook. Good fer you, Jack! But those are two different abilities completely! So let's divide yourself up so BOTH the fisherman and the chef get paid! Hell ya!
SQUID SUSHI (all prices are current as of 2/17/09)
Hour 1: Gogo fishing! Your fishing self is able to pull in 12 squids per hour. Go you! That means after 1 hour you have accumulated 36,000g in fish. (36,000g/hour!)
So your fishing self could sell those fish on the AH for 36,000g. But you don't. Instead, you want to use them for crafting. In essence, you will 'sell' 36,000g worth of fish to yourself for crafting. (BIG MISTAKE!!)
Hour 2: Gogo crafting! You are already 'in the hole' to yourself 36,000g you could have made by selling your fish. Also, you need to buy the rest of the ingredients! So you buy:
Now don't forget that you 'bought' those fish from your fishing self! So that's 36,000g you owe yourself!
Total Cost per Stack of Mats - 65,024g.
[Crafting Assumptions: I assume 10/30/50%. Ie. If you are 11+ lvls over synth:10%HQ, 31+: 30%HQ, 51+:50%HQ. For all items with HQ2,3,4 I assume 50% of HQ are HQ1, 50% HQ2.]
So you set out to craft your squid sushi's.
[I will assume that you can do 4 stacks of mats per crafting hour (including all associated running around for items.) Prices for NQ sushi: 10,200g/stack, HQ17,000g/stack]:
Using 4 stacks of Mats, your PROFIT (sale - cost) will be:
If you are level 70-80 Chef: -15296g/hour
Lvl 81-100 Chef: 1024g/hour
Lvl 101+ Chef: 33,664/hour.
Wait! What!? How? But I'm an epic crafter!
Not quite, Jack. You would have been better off just fishing for 2 hours.
Result for 2 hours of work:
Fishing squids for 2 hours.
FISHING & CRAFTING: +20,704g or +37,024g or +69664g (depending on craft level).
1 hour fishing profit: +36,000g
1 hour crafting profit:
Lvl 70 chef: -15296g
Lvl 81 chef: 1024g
Lvl 101+ chef: 33,664g
Result: YOU LOSE MR. CRAFTER! The supply side just kicked your butt, jack!
Since I've explained my layout already, I'll just get to the meat (or the fish, as it were)
(feel free to fact check prices with ffxiah if you like, they are current).
2 hours of fishing black soles resulting in 2 stacks.
FISHING & CRAFTING: +19,204 or +22,404(depending on craft level).
1 hour fishing profit: +10,900g
1 hour crafting profit:
Lvl 80-90 chef: 8304g
Lvl 91+ chef: 11,504g
Result: It seems if you are Lvl 91+ in cooking it's a good day to go hog wild on cooking, you actually beat fishing (by 604g/hour. nice use of 91+ lvls of crafting).
"But I can't fish! And I want to waste gil too!"
Fear not, little friend. There is always cock meat! GO farm!
FARMING (3 stacks/hour): +72,000g
2 hours of farming
FARMING & CRAFTING: +18240g or +29040g or +50,640g or +72240 (depending on craft level)
1 hour farming profit: +36,000g
1 hour crafting profit:
Lvl 38-48 chef: -17760g
Lvl 49-68 chef: -6960g
Lvl 69-88 chef: 14,640g
Lvl 89+ chef: +36240
Result: Supply Side PWN!
Lesson #3: Math is For Sissies
I really like crafting. It makes me feel good to create stuff that other people can use. I HATE that I have to pay every time I do it, when I'd make more gils mindlessly slaughtering helpless animals or fish.
I don't expect this post to make a difference. Responses will likely be:
"But I craft AS I fish/farm"
"How do I have to PAY myself when I fish/farm?"
"Math is for sissies"
But I guess money always takes work to make. It's a shame that 100+ work into craft lvling is not 'work.' It seems work is only running in circles killing, farming, and fishing.
SO today, 2/17/09, Supply side is the only way to make money in Cooking.
Edited, Feb 17th 2009 1:17pm by moonica