Craftsmen working in the guilds have been quite busy as of late.
Some craft items well below their skill level over and over, while others rush into a guild and then bolt right back out. And crowds of adventurers have been known to show up in the middle of the night.
This phenomenon can be seen at every guild.
To those unaffiliated with a crafting guild, this is a very odd sight. At first, I was one of those who thought it peculiar, but asking a craftsman made everything clear.
An adventurer makes a contract with a guild to provide the various items that the guild requests. The guild then rewards the adventurer with "Pointsguild points."
Of course, the object is not to amass guild points; rather the goal is to trade in the points for special items.
The guilds offer high-quality crystals that allow crafters to engrave their names into their products. But the guilds also offer equipment, such as spectacles, aprons, and even furniture. And crafters want them all.
The aprons and furniture require a great deal of skill and effort to obtain. Possessing a full set of these items is the hallmark of a master craftsman.
And so the adventurers work continuously crafting or fishing for the specified items and handing them in to the guild representative.
Segakobz entered a contract with the Tanners' Guild in San d'Oria. He has attained the rank of Expert but still lacks the skill required to take hold of the highest prize the guild has to offer--the Golden Fleece.
"I want something that says 'Leather' in big, glowing letters! And I hope they start offering a wider variety of items, too," he said.
After expressing his ambitions in the Tanners' Guild, he shouted, "Oh no! I'm not going to make the deadline today!" and scrambled off.
When I visited the Culinarians' Guild in Windurst, I found the area in front of the guild overflowing with adventurers who were busily crafting away. I spoke to a crafter named Kikyi.
"I want the Cordon Bleu cooking set, but the apron is more important to me," she said with a bright smile. It seemed she could hardly wait to model her apron in the mirror.
She continued to speak of her dreams as a craftsman, including her desire to place guild furniture in her Mog House one day.
Moving on to Bastok and the Blacksmiths' Guild there, I spoke with Yonecchi, who had quickly acquired the necessary guild points for his blacksmith's apron.
"I traded in items every day and finally got my apron," he said.
He looked quite happy striking a pose in his new apron. I thought he would tell me about how hard he worked for it--but instead, like the craftsmen in other nations, he told me of his next goal.
"I want goggles to protect my eyes! A blacksmith's eyes are his life!" he said.
Looking off into the distance, he muttered, "Ahh, to see a an item that would require a year's worth of guild points." His face was set in the stoic expression of a man who had traveled far down an endless road.
Having talked to craftsmen in all three nations, I realized that none of them are simply pouring their blood, sweat, and tears into some bauble that shows them to be accomplished in their arts. They are also dedicated to making contributions to their guilds.
It is this dedication that drives them, even after they have acquired the full set of items that their guild offers. They continue their work, dreaming of items that the guild may one day offer.
Along different lines, the frenzied activity of these craftsmen is having an effect on other areas as well.
The materials trade at the Auction House started to heat up just as the guilds began to offer these contracts.
Gardeners, chocobo diggers, miners, harvesters and loggers are also working hard to meet the rising demand for their goods.
It seems that the mere act of writing about these passionate craftsmen has resulted in some of their vigor rubbing off on me. I'm thinking of grabbing my hatchets and heading out to Ghelsba after I finish this article.