Leveling up Blacksmithing can be a quick affair if you have the assistance of a fellow crafter.
Deconstruction always grants more inspiration than creation and yields materials. Items made by another player gives the most inspiration, enhanced with higher level items, better item quality, with the presence of traits such as "Intricate" items.
- Find a crafting partner who is near your crafting level.
- Each partner creates daggers for the maximum level as possible in the following progression: 4, 16, 26, 36, 46, Champion: 10, 40, 80, 100
- Trade the items to each other.
- Deconstruct the daggers made by the other person.
You may also craft writs to not only obtain experience, but also gain special tempers and other items.
- Quest Giver: Equipment Crafting Writs Board
- Prerequisite Quest: Blacksmith Certification
- Rewards: Blacksmith's Coffer and Blacksmith Inspiration
|1||Blacksmith's Coffer I
|Iron Ingots||Consortium Trading Post
: Vulkhel Guard in Auridon
: Daggerfall in Glenumbra
: Davon's Watch in Stonefalls
|2||Blacksmith's Coffer II
|Steel Ingots||Alliance Supply Depot
: Elden Root in Grahtwood
: Wayrest in Stormhaven
: Mournhold in Deshaan
Blacksmith's Coffer III
|Orichalc Ingots||Refugee Relief Site
: Marbruk in Greenshade
: Shornhelm in Rivenspire
: Stormhold in Shadowfen
|4||Blacksmith's Coffer IV
|Dwarven Ingots||Fighters Guild Provisioner
: Velyn Harbor in Malabal Tor
: Sentinel in Alik'r Desert
: Windhelm in Eastmarch
|5||Blacksmith's Coffer V
|Ebony Ingots||Privateer Drop-Off
: Rawl'kha in Reaper's March
: Evermore in Bangkorai
: Riften in The Rift
|6||Blacksmith's Coffer VI
|Calcinium Ingots||Mages Guild Locus
Hollow City in Coldharbour
|7||Blacksmith's Coffer VII
|Galatite Ingots||Belkarth Quartermaster
Belkarth in Craglorn
|8||Blacksmith's Coffer VIII
|Quicksilver Ingots||Belkarth Quartermaster
Belkarth in Craglorn
|9||Blacksmith's Coffer IX
|Voidstone Ingots||Belkarth Quartermaster
Belkarth in Craglorn
|10||Blacksmith's Coffer X
|Rubedite Ingots||Only available if you own Orsinium DLC
Otherwise writs will remain at Level 9
Orsinium in Wrothgar
(thank you to Myrron for graciously allowing us to add this here)
(Note: All of this was accurate by the final beta test. It is possible some of this may have changed in the Live version. Updates will be made as necessary.)
The Too Long, Didn’t Read Summary:
(Assuming you know how to use the anvil)
- Find a buddy or make an alt*
- Make level 6 Iron daggers. Buddy does the same.
- Give all daggers to buddy so (s)he can deconstruct them
- Buddy gives all his/her daggers they made to you. Deconstruct them all.
- Repeat steps 2, 3, and 4.
- Level up and eventually get the perk for the next tier of smithing (steel)
- Repeat all of the above with level 16 Steel daggers.
- Level up and eventually get the perk for the next tier of smithing (orichalc)
- ??? (Will update as game progresses through ebony- level 50)
*- If you prefer solo smithing, deconstruct them yourself. Prepare to work 3 times as hard, though. Literally.
For much, much more, please read below.
Welcome to the Elder Scrolls Online and the intriguing world of crafting! ESO currently provides six crafts, three “hard” crafts and three “soft” crafts. The hard crafts are blacksmithing, clothier, and woodworking, due to their much slower skill up rates and the ability to provide weapons and armor. The soft crafts are provisioning, enchanting, and alchemy, due to their fast skill up rate and the creation of consumables. This guide provides an in-depth look at the hard craft, blacksmithing.
First things first, what is blacksmithing in ESO and who should consider becoming one? Like other games, blacksmithing allows the crafter to create metal-based weapons and armor. It is important to note that shields are not made by a blacksmith, but are instead a product of woodworkers. Many items are “Bind on Equip” meaning they can be given or sold to others. Typically, there are some perks to crafting, such as “Bind on Pickup” items, which can only be used by the creator. In case there are some perks for blacksmiths such as this, it is recommended that anyone planning on using heavy armor and metal-based weapons (swords, axes, daggers, and maces, both 2-handed and one-handed) consider blacksmithing if they are picking up a craft.
So far, this is generic information, true for most MMOs and fantasy games. Let’s get down to blacksmithing as it relates to ESO!
1. Do you need to put any points into blacksmithing, buy a miner’s pick, or do anything in order to begin?
Nope! All you need is Iron Ore to begin or metal-based weapons or armor in your inventory (not your equipped gear).
2. Ok, I want to level blacksmithing! Give me the basics. What do I need to begin?
First, realize that all crafts level up by acquiring “inspiration points (IP).” Creating an item provides IP. Taking an existing item and breaking it down (“deconstructing”) provides IP. To level up, you need a certain amount of IP. Basically, IP is the equivalent of experience points.
To begin gaining IP, you have one of two choices. You can go out into the world (or to a guild store) and acquire iron ore, or gather metal-based weapons and heavy armor that you have no use for. If you collect ore, you need at least 10 in order to begin. If you collect weapons/armor, you only need one item to get started.
3. Ten ore? Got it. Unused weapons/armor? Check. What’s next?
Find an anvil, which are typically in cities (but can be found out in the world). The first time you open up the blacksmithing UI (mouse over the anvil and select “Use” (E) ) you will see some in-game tutorials. Read over them, or if you’re like me, ignore it and worry about it later. The Blacksmithing UI has five main tabs along the top right in this order: Refine, Creation, Deconstruct, Improvement, and Research. When you open up the UI, it automatically puts you in “Refine.” Here, if you have 10+ ore, you can select that ore and turn them into ingots.
The alternative is to select “Deconstruct.” Choose this to destroy armor and weapons into ingots. When you pick “Deconstruct,” you will be given the choice to extract weapons or armor (called Apparel). Next, pick (double-click) the item to deconstruct, and it will be highlighted at the bottom of your screen. If you’re sure you want to destroy it, do so by clicking the Deconstruct command (R).
Deconstruct destroys the weapon or armor, and provides you with some of the raw materials used to create that item. In all cases, refining ore or deconstructing weapons or armor will give you ingots (for example, deconstructing a heavy iron helmet will give you iron ingots). You may also get racial stones, quality enhancers, and trait stones depending on the item being deconstructed and luck.
On average, 10 iron ore yields 8 iron ingots. Deconstructing weapons and armor provides less but provides the chance to get racial stones, item enhancers, and trait stones.
4. Ok, I got some ingots. Now what?
In order to create anything in ESO, you need ingots and a racial stone. At first, you can only create items made by your race. For example, a Breton needs to have Molybdenum, which can be bought from the NPC blacksmith for 21g each. If you have at least 3 Iron Ingots (preferably more) and at least one racial stone for your race, you can begin creating.
5. Ok, ingots, check. Stone, check. I wanna start!
To create weapons or armor, open up the blacksmithing UI. Select the “Creation” tab. Choose either the Weapons or Armor sub-tab, and then you will see several rows of options. Let’s say you pick the “Weapons” tab. The first row allows you to scroll through and pick which weapon you want to make. For this example, let’s make a dagger, so you would scroll through until you find the dagger.
The second row asks you to pick which type of ingot you plan to use. At the start of the game, you will only have access to iron ingots, which is the first option. The second row also asks you to pick how many ingots to use. More ingots = higher item level (and thus, more power/defense). You can add ingots up until level 14, but keep in mind, if you make a level 14 item for your use, you need to be level 14 to equip it. Daggers take the least number of ingots, even at the maximum level, so they are a good item to make early on to raise your skill.
The third row gives you an opportunity to add a trait to your creation. Weapons have eight traits, and armor has eight different traits. Traits give your gear boosts, such as increased weapon speed, or bonus armor. In order to add a trait, however, you have to have Researched it and have the proper gem. At the start of the game, you likely will not have any traits yet, so for now, you can select “none” in the third row.
Finally, in the last row, you can pick what style (race) you want for your weapon. At first, you are limited to your race. However, there are ways in the game for you to learn other races’ styles, which we’ll get into later. For now, pick your race, and you will see that it will use up one racial stone in order to make the item.
After all the selections have been made, click on the Craft button (or push “R”) and congrats, you made your first item, an iron dagger!
6. Ok, I know how to make things. Is this like Skyrim, where I just need to make iron daggers over and over? What’s the best way to level up?
Fortunately, unless you really liked making iron daggers, IP gains in ESO doesn’t rely on creating the same item over and over until level 50. These are the following ways to gain IP, from best to worst:
Deconstructing quest rewards, world drops, or items made by other people (higher level/quality gives more) = best IP gain.
Creating your own weapons/armor (higher level gives more) = ok IP gains
Deconstructing your own created items = weak IP gains
Refining ore = 0 gain. Do it for the love of ingots.
Ironically, the way to gain the most IP is not to create something, but to destroy something. The higher-level the item deconstructed, and the higher-quality it is (blue, green, white, etc), the more IP you will gain. So Deconstructing a level 14 blue item will give more IP than a level 14 green item, which in turn will give more IP than a level 14 white item. All will give more IP than a level 12 item of the same quality, and so forth. Furthermore, if you are given a much higher item (a dwarven dagger) and all you know how to make are iron items, you can STILL deconstruct it, for huge IP gains! A level 50 white-quality item yields 1,208 IP as of the final beta test and can be deconstructed by someone brand new to blacksmithing. I smell a market for power levelers and level 50 ebony daggers.
However, naturally, there is a limit to how many items you might have lying around. The next best way to gain IP is to create items. Creating level 14 weapons and armor provides the next highest amount of IP. It does not matter how many ingots you use, only item level determines the amount of IP gained. So don’t make chest armor, make belts! Don’t make 2-handed maces, make daggers! However, if you want the best bang for your buck, I recommend making level 6 iron daggers, not level 14. The reason will be listed below, but basically, when you factor in how many ingots it takes to make a max level item compared to how many lower-level items can be made with the same amount of ingots, you maximize your ingot use by making level 6 iron daggers.
Deconstructing items you made yields some IP, but not much. It’s actually much, much better to deconstruct items a buddy made, so I recommend pairing up with someone when Blacksmithing.
Finally, refining ore does not provide any IP at all. Sorry.
7. Why am I making level 6 iron daggers if I get the most IP from making level 14 iron daggers?
It’s math. It takes 4 iron ingots to create a level 6 dagger. It takes 8 ingots to make a level 14 dagger. It is assumed you will be deconstructing the daggers for the additional IP and not selling them back to vendors. If you add the amount of IP gained from making and deconstructing a level 6 dagger and divide by 4 (the number of ingots used), and compare it to the IP gained from making and deconstructing a level 14 dagger and divide by 8, basically you get more IP per ingot by making level 6 iron daggers. The same calculation is true for level 16 steel daggers vs any other steel level. Higher-level metals will be added up through ebony (when you can make level 50 items).
If you like math, here’s some detailed math. If you hate math, trust what you have already read and move on to #8.
Example: Crafting with experience breakdown as of last beta (curiass data provided by madangrypally of the Tamriel Foundry forums, and Jesuis in beta forums had correct calculations and concluded the level 6 dagger was the best):
IP Gains are based entirely on level. So, for example, a level 4 item gives 95 IP no matter what the item is (weapon, armor) or how many ingots it takes. A level 4 dagger and level 4 curiass are compared below, and you can see that a level 4 dagger will yield more IP per ingot used than a curiass.
- Crafting a level 4 Cuirass will require 8 Ingots but still 95 IP
- Deconstructing a level 4 Cuirass you have crafted will earn 27 IP
- This gives a total of 122 IP for 8 ingots or 15.3 IP per ingot.
- Crafting a level 4 Dagger will require 3 Ingots for 95 IP
- Deconstructing a level 4 Dagger you have crafted will earn 27 IP
- This gives a total of 122 IP for 3 ingots or 40.67 IP per ingot.
Taking this math one step further, it makes sense to seek out the item that gives the highest IP-per-ingot ratio. Using daggers for the tests, we eventually find that a level 6 dagger has the highest IP-per-ingot ratio of all the iron daggers. Below is the math comparing a level 6 dagger with a level 14 iron dagger (the highest-level possible for iron daggers):
- Crafting a level 6 Dagger will require 4 Ingots for 127 IP
- Deconstructing a level 6 Dagger you have crafted will earn 36 IP
- This gives a total of 163 IP for 3 ingots, or 40.75 IP per ingot.
- Crafting a level 14 dagger will require 8 Ingots but gives 228 IP
- Deconstructing a level 14 dagger you have crafted will earn 65 IP
- This gives a total of 293 IP for 8 ingots or 36.6 IP per ingot.
- Crafting and Deconstructing level 4 Cuirass: 15.3 IP per ingot.
- Crafting and Deconstructing level 4 dagger: 40.67 IP per ingot.
- Crafting and Deconstructing level 6 dagger: 40.75 IP per ingot (winner).
- Crafting and Deconstructing level 14 daggers: 36.6 IP per ingot.
Conclusion: You can test all of the other levels yourself, but what you’ll find is that the level 6 iron dagger has the most efficient IP-per-ingot ratio of all the iron items.
For reference, in the Steel realm, a level 16 steel dagger gives the highest IP per ingot ratio at 110.33 (331 IP per 3 ingots) if deconstructing it yourself. The steel dagger line gets progressively worse the higher level you go: level 18 dagger (93.5), level 20 (83.8 ), level 22 (75.17) and level 24 (72.57).
8. So, why should you buddy up (or use an alt) instead of doing it all alone?
Madangrypally from the Tamriel Foundry forums gave a solid example. Again, if you hate math, trust us and find a friend, level up an alt simultaneously, or farm three times more ore and move on to #9.
Crafting a Level 6 Blacksmithing item will reward 127 IP regardless what it is. So it makes sense to use an item that doesn’t require many ingots: a dagger. Let’s compare two level 6 daggers (the comparison extends to all levels):
Do it yourself:
Crafting a level 6 dagger will require 4 Ingots for 127 IP
Deconstructing a level 6 dagger you have crafted will earn 36 IP
Total IP from doing it yourself and spending 4 ingots: 163 IP
Find a buddy/alt:
Crafting a level 6 dagger will require 4 Ingots for 127 IP
Deconstructing a level 6 dagger another (or an alt) has crafted will earn 272 IP
Total IP from working with someone and spending 4 ingots: 399 IP (99.75 IP/ingot ratio)
Crafting and Deconstructing self-made dagger: 163 IP (40.75 IP/ingot ratio).
Crafting and trading daggers for Deconstruction: 399 IP (99.75 IP/ingot ratio).
So the best way to earn IP is to have 2 crafters who craft level 6 daggers and trade them (through your shared bank if using an alt). Not for the gained iron ingots (which will be about the same no matter what) but for the increased inspiration points. If you use an alt character, you effectively have your own buddy; however, as you spend skill points with your main to level up blacksmithing, you will need to do the same for your alt. TIP: If you use an alt and don’t mind basically leveling up two blacksmiths, you might as well put points into the Hireling skill on your alt, and get double the benefits from your little helper.
9. So what’s the deal with traits?
Traits are bonuses you can add to a weapon or piece of armor, such as enhanced weapon attack speed, or bonus armor. You can add a trait to an item if you have done two things first: Researched the trait, and have a gemstone for that trait in your inventory. Let’s begin with Researching…
10. What is Researching?
In the blacksmith UI, the fifth tab is “Research.” If you run across an item with a trait, you can destroy the item in order to learn the trait (much like Skyrim’s way to learn enchantments). Weapons have eight traits that can be researched, such as Precise (increases weapon and spell critical values) and Defending (increases armor and spell resistance). Armor also has eight traits, such as Sturdy (less decay on that item when killed) and Exploration (increases XP gains when discovering new locations). However, there are two catches.
- Catch #1- Unlike Skyrim, when you learn a trait, you learn it ONLY for one item slot. For example, if you learn the Defending trait from a pair of boots, you can ONLY enchant boots with Defending. If you want to add Defending to a helmet, you have to wait until you can find a helmet with that trait, and then spend time Researching it (which, if you remember, destroys the item). Just because you know Precise for one-handed maces does not mean you can add it to a sword, a dagger, or even a 2-handed mace. In other words, to create a full set of armor with Exploration, you must first find existing armor for every armor slot with that trait, and then spend the time Researching all of those slots. Which brings me to catch #2…
- Catch #2- Researching takes time. A lot of time. The first trait for an item takes 6 real-time hours to learn. (Time continues if you exit the game, fortunately). The second trait for the same item takes 12 hours. The third trait takes 24 hours. It doubles each time. So for a single slot (for example: gloves), it will take a total of almost 64 days to learn all eight traits. This is assuming, of course, you run across 8 pairs of gloves with all 8 traits across them. And that 64 days only maxxes out all 8 traits for gloves…don’t forget, you also have boots, helmets, axes…
Oh yeah, you don’t gain IP from Researching. Sorry. However, each hard craft’s Researching timer is independent of one another. In other words, you can be Researching a trait for blacksmithing, another one for clothier, and a third trait for woodworking all at the same time.
11. So I learned a trait. How do I add it to my gear?
Let’s use a dagger in this example. You found a dagger with Precise on it, Researched it, and now you know the Precise trait for daggers. Adding the trait to a new item is pretty easy. Precise requires a ruby. When you attempt to make a dagger, have a ruby in your inventory or in your personal bank. You will notice that when you are in the Blacksmithing UI, under the Creation tab, you can scroll across to the third row (the Traits row) until you find the ruby, which should no longer be red (unavailable). Leave the ruby selected and proceed to make the dagger. Congratulations, you have a dagger with the Precise trait!
12. Can I learn all traits?
No, there are two traits that currently cannot be learned: Ornate and Intricate. The Ornate trait simply increases the gold you get when you sell the item to a vendor. Intricate increases the IP gained when you deconstruct that particular item. (In other words, equipping the Intricate item does NOT help boost all deconstruction IP gains! It is a one-time boost when you deconstruct that item only.) Neither trait can be Researched.
13. So what’s the deal with racial weapons? How do I make a Daedric weapon?
You begin the game only able to make gear of your race. However, there are blue-quality books scattered around the world that, once used, teaches you how to make items from another race. These books can be anywhere- chests, urns, desks, you name it. It is completely random, too. For example, on my second character, I ran across the Khajiit racial crafting book in a chest in the starter zone (before I ever escaped). Fortunately, the books are BoE, so you can trade them or sell them. An alt character can put one in in the bank in order to allow your crafter to pick it up and read it (your bank is shared across all of your characters). Also fortunately, you need only find one book, and it unlocks all racial gear in all three of the hard crafts- woodworking and clothier in addition to blacksmithing.
Once you learn another race’s style, in the blacksmithing UI, under the Creation tab, you can scroll across the fourth row until you find the gem for that race. Of course, you need to have that gemstone in your inventory, but remember, racial gemstones are sold by blacksmith NPC vendors, who are usually near their anvils. You may also gain racial gemstones by deconstructing gear, so you might not need to buy one!
Basically, in order to make a Daedric suit of armor, you only need to find a Daedric racial crafting book once, on any character, and send it to your blacksmith. Once you read it, that character can craft anything Daedric, from weapons to armor. The racial books for some of the more unique styles, such as Primitive and Daedra, are said to be harder to find than the playable races’ books.
14. What’s the Improvement tab? How do I improve items I make?
Improvement allows you to upgrade your weapons and armor’s quality. A white-quality weapon can be Improved to a green-quality weapon. A green-quality gauntlet could be Improved to a blue-quality gauntlet. The item level remains the same, but improving the quality will increase the weapon’s damage or the armor’s defense rating. (For example, a white level 4 dagger’s damage is 11, but a green level 4 dagger’s damage is 16.) Any traits you have on the item also get buffed, too.
You can Improve any item you possess. If it is BoE, it remains BoE, so you can improve other people’s items too. In order to Improve an item, you must possess the proper temper. For example, in order to Improve a white item to a green item, you need honing stones. Each honing stone gives you a 20% chance of success. If you have five honing stones and wish to use them all, you have a 100% success rate for Improving the item. You can try to Improve an item below a 100% success rate, but if you fail, the item is destroyed. To move up the quality chain, you need different tempers at each step. For example, to Improve a green item into a blue item, you need dwarven oils, not honing stones.
Tempers (the “Booster” item specific for blacksmiths) can be obtained by Deconstructing items of that quality (Deconstructing green items has a chance of giving you honing stones, Deconstructing blue items might give you dwarven oil, etc.) And putting skill points into Temper Expertise reduces the number of tempers needed to reach 100% success rate. (For more information about blacksmithing skill points, see #15 in this guide below.) Adding skill points in Metallurgy gives you better chances of getting tempers when Deconstructing. You can also get tempers from your hireling, as well as Refinement. Paul Sage, the Creative Director for ESO, said in a Q&A session with TESO Elite that these three methods were the only ways to get Boosters (though some people claim to find boosters in the world, like in chests), making crafters able to make use of all three methods valuable. He also mentioned that Legendary items do not drop, implying that for anyone to get a Legendary item, they either need to be a crafter or be friends with one.
15. Skill points and blacksmithing. Tell me about them.
When allocating skill points, there is a “Crafting” section that, when opened, reveals perks for all six crafts. The blacksmithing skill line has six different skills which you can put perks into. The first skill, Metalworking, is the only “required” one if you plan to max out blacksmithing. You automatically begin with 1/9 points in Metalworking. Additional points unlock the ability to use higher-level ingots. For example, at 2/9, you can create items made with steel. 9/9 opens up the use of Voidstone ingots. As for the non-essential skills…
- Keen Eye: Ore is a helpful perk at night. When you get near ore on the ground (within 20m), it glows with a yellow-ish hue. Additional points in this perk cause the ore pile to glow from further away (30m with two points, 40m with three points). Personally, I don’t know if I would max this perk out, but I plan to put at least 1 point here for night farming.
- Miner Hireling is interesting. Once a day, you receive a letter in the mail with an attachment. Upon opening the attachment, you can gain ore, stones, and item enhancements. It’s not much, but you can get higher-quality ore than what you can use (I was getting ore used to create steel ingots when all I could craft was iron gear), so it might be a nice way to stockpile ore for future use. Additional points in this perk can provide more items/ore per day. One beta user reported receiving a legendary temper from a hireling, so if that’s true, that could potentially be a once-a-day chance at really awesome items! Hirelings send you more powerful items based on your character’s level, not your blacksmithing level.
- Metal Extraction basically increases the amount of items you get back when you Deconstruct. More skill points spent here yields even higher amounts back. Pretty self-explanatory.
- Metallurgy reduces the time spent researching and allows for the ability to research multiple traits at once. It won’t take 64 days to learn all eight traits per slot if you have this perk maxxed out! If you like math: 6 hours (first trait) + 12h (second trait) + 24h +48h + 96h + 192h + 384h + 768h (eighth trait) / 24h = 63.75 days. That’s for one slot, assuming no breaks in between traits, and assuming no skill points into time reduction. Now multiply by the total number of weapon and armor slots blacksmithing has to offer (14)…yeah. You might want those skill points. Or spend almost two and a half years of non-stop researching. If you are in the middle of researching a trait, and you spend a point in Metallurgy, you immediately gain the benefit and the time decreases on the item currently being researched.
- Temper Expertise is also pretty self-explanatory. Instead of 5 honing stones needed to improve an item, you will need less. More points spent = much less than 5. While it might not matter in the early parts of the game, it also reduces the number of tempers you need to make items Legendary, which should be helpful during the 50+/++ game.
16. Ok, I know the basics. What advanced tips do you have, Myrron? I keep hearing about set bonuses…what’s up, buddy?
Spread out around Tamriel are secret workshops. They have a unique icon on the map; it looks like a campfire with a hammer and chisel crossed beneath. Crafting anything in one of these workshops can add a set bonus to the item. The bonus activates if you have enough of the set pieces equipped. These “set bonuses” are separate from traits, and yes, you can create an item with both a trait and a set bonus. Furthermore, the set bonus activates no matter what kind of armor type you have on. For example, you could wear a cloth helmet, a woodworking shield, and a heavy armor boots and gain the benefit from the 3-piece set.
Once you enter the workshop, seek out the anvil. When you open the Anvil, you will notice two new tabs under the Creation tab called "Set Weapons" and "Set Armor." There is a Research requirement in order to create set items. In the level 5-15 zones, the secret workshops require you to have completed research on two traits on items. So for example, if you already know "Training" and "Infused" for heavy armor boots, you are qualified to create the "Sabatons of Death's Wind." (You are not required to attach either of those traits to your boots, you simply have to have 2 unlocked traits to qualify to make the boots.)
The Set Item's stats are identical to normal weapon and heavy armor stats, and are BOE. However, if you wear three items from the set (3 armor pieces, 2 armor and 1 weapon, or 1 weapon, 1 shield, and 1 armor), you gain the set bonus. It is recommended if you want the bonus full-time to put it on three pieces of armor. If you have a weapon that is part of your set bonus, and you swap weapons, you break the bonus. Some sets require 3 items to be equipped, and others require 5 equipped items. You can wear 3 items from one 3-piece set and 3 items from another 3-piece set and gain the bonuses from both sets simultaneously.
To give a concrete example of item sets, I will provide the three sets found in the level 5-15 zones. Be assured there are many other secret workshops out there, and high-end workshops will require more than 2 Researched traits in order to be used. So begin Researching as early as possible! The 5-15 sets:
- Death's Wind set- bonus: (3) "If struck by a melee attack while below 35% health, triggers an area of effect knockback. This effect can only happen once every 3 minutes." Workshop locations: Glenumbra -Go to Chill House (SW of Wyrd Tree Wayshrine). Aldmere Dominion- NW of Vulkhel Guard there is Eastshore Islets Camp. Ebonheart Pact- Armature’s Upheaval in Stonefalls.
- Night's Silence set- bonus: (3) "While hidden increase health regeneration by 40%." Workshop locations: Glenumbra- Island east of Hag Fen Wayshrine that has Mesanthano's Tower. Aldmere Dominion- on the coast behind Skywatch. Ebonheart Pact- just south and slightly west of Dervon’s Watch, there is a shrine surrounded by lava, if you go up the mountain behind it, there is a cave with the workshop.
- Ashen Grip set- bonus: (3) "10% chance to breathe fire for X (value determined by item level) flame damage on melee hits. This can only happen once every 4 seconds." Workshop locations: Glenumbra - North of Cath Bedraud there is Par Molag Workshop. Aldmere Dominion- on a cliff SE of The North Beacon. An easy way to find it is if you are on the coast it is at the top of the waterfall or if you are up to it is near the river. Ebonheart Pact- Magmafall Overlook in Stonefalls.
Darkchyld notes: Item level requirement, as well as quality, determines the damage dealt while wearing Ashen Grip. If there are pieces of varying level/quality, the lowest damage is what the set will proc. We can guess that this concept extends to all set bonuses, not just Ashen Grip.
17. So I ran across a blacksmithing skill book. What does it do?
Blacksmithing skill books increase your blacksmithing skill by 2. So a level 8 blacksmith will automatically jump to level 9. Like in Skyrim, if you are, say, 95% of the way to level 9, and you read a skill book, it boosts you to 95% of the way to level 10.
18. Did you do anything stupid while learning all of this?
Yes. When I began blacksmithing, my character did not own a helmet, shoulders, or a belt. I said to myself, hey, I can make all of those! Go me! I proceeded to create level 1 items of each for my level 6 Templar. It was soon afterward when I figured out that I could increase the item level of my creations by increasing the number of ingots used. So I promptly re-made the helmet, shoulders, and belt at level 6, thus wasting the ingots I used when I made the level 1 items.
19. Credits. A lot of others helped out tremendously in the making of this guide. Thank them!
This information is not just my work, but also collaboration from beta testers in ESO since November. J’Sylvan was the first I saw to mention the 64-day timeframe it would take to fully Research one slot without skill points reducing that time. Bad_Horse was the first person to post in the beta forums about the concept of working together with a friend, and the tremendous IP gains one gets from doing so. He also suggested selling high-level items to beginning blacksmiths for the high IP gains. Madangrypally of the Tamriel Foundry forums provided numbers for the curiass comparison, and his format for explaining the buddy system was used in answering questions 8 and 10. Darkchyld gave the locations and descriptions for several Glenumbra set workshops, and NightStorm and tizl in the Tamriel Foundry forums filled in the remaining non-DC locations, since I could only explore Glenumbra. Soracia recommended a change in wording (I had been calling traits "enchants" out of my Skyrim habits). Darkchyld also noted the set bonus is determined by the lowest item level of the set, if the pieces are different levels. Thanks to Jesuis who caught a math error I made. And thanks to dedpahomb16 who was the first person to alert me to the existence of set workshops.
20. Are you their reader? It’s me, Myrron.
If you read through this entire guide, wow. What a trooper. It’s over 5500 words long. Hopefully, some of it helped. I plan to keep it updated as best I can. The content contained in this guide is based on the state of the game from the final beta test, so when Live hits, there might be minor differences. Feel free to use this guide, however, you see fit, and feel free to re-post it wherever you like (I firmly believe in freely sharing knowledge). I just ask that if you use it on your websites, forums, or wherever you re-post it, it is re-posted in its entirety (unedited). See you at the smithy in Tamriel!
Breton Templar, Aldmeri Dominion