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Synthesis (合成 [gousei] or 'synthesis' in Japanese) is a way of making items out of other items. As such, it is a form of crafting. However, unlike traditional crafting that requires only the raw materials and tools, synthesis often uses crystals as an aid in creation. These crystals bring in elements of their own, destroying, mending, melting and melding. Each elemental crystal has their own property that is used in different ways in synthesis.

Final Fantasy IX

FF9 was the first appearance of synthesis in the series. It differs somewhat in that the player themselves weren't able to synthesize items, but have to go to special shops that do this service. Synthesis results are limited to various equipment and several consumable items, and require other equipment and items to make, along with the service fee in gil. There is also the limitation that not all synthesis shops are capable of making all products.

Final Fantasy XI

Coming soon

Final Fantasy XIV


Unlike FF11, where crystals and a strong mind are all the tools you need for synthesis, FF14 crystal synthesis requires the use of appropriate tools with the crystals merely aiding the process of making things. Each crystal also has not only its elemental property to think of, but the strength of its elemental alignment. Shards have much less power than clusters and are needed for different recipes, with regular crystals in between the two in strength. Also unlike FF11, the grand majority of the time you will be working with multiple (sometimes hundreds) of crystals, not just one.

Not much is known about synthesis within Hydaelyn, but it appears1 that all crafters use the aid of crystals in their work, and that crystal trade is one of the backbones of any trading at least within Eorzea.

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