Inventory management is one of my least favourite tasks to do in any video game. I’m someone who always dumps whatever resources he has then complains he doesn’t know where anything is or goes out to gather more of a resource he has hundreds of.
While I recognize when I put effort into organizing my storage and inventory in video games I generally come up with good solutions, I never start with planning storage out since I’d rather be out in the world gathering things. *cough* It doesn’t seem to matter whether I need to build my storage containers or if I have the end-game amount of storage, things will be disorganized for several hours.
A few years ago I took a break from FFXIV. The pandemic had just gone into full tilt, I had lost my job and my husband and I were planning on emigrating. Since funds were low and realistically I wouldn’t have the most time to play XIV I let my sub expire and came back to an extreme mess of an inventory.
Before I took my break I was farming a good amount of side content, particularly The Forbidden Land, Eureka, which has dozens of unique resources that you need hundreds of not to mention there was an overhaul to Gathering mechanics when Endwalker launched making HQ gathered resources untradable, leaving me mighty confused.
Hell, I’ll take it one step further, I had realized my Retainers’ inventories were filled with Tribal Quest resources that had absolutely no use to me and were just sitting there because I was way too lazy to read what they were. I needed a lot of help.
I constantly told my husband I couldn’t do anything in-game because all of my storage was filled and genuinely I don’t know how I survived before I left. My husband always encouraged me to read his guide on how to manage your inventory, but being the sassy human that I am, I always told him he should just do it for me. He never did… but I’m really glad he didn’t.
Now, it might seem a bit weird that I’m essentially hijacking a topic my husband already covered extremely thoroughly, but what I’ve learned since returning to the game is just how differently my husband and I manage our inventories and just how much of that is based on the tasks we regularly complete and what priorities we have for certain resources. Though there will be a good deal of overlap between our guides, I think having both our perspectives will be useful to players as you may find yourself relating to one of us more than the other.
This post will be quite lengthy as I’m going to try to take you through as many details as I can, it will not only explain how I use the various types of inventories, but also what types of resources I will hold onto in comparison to others.
Note: If you have any questions about FFXIV that you want me to cover feel free to leave them in a comment below, you can also ask me while I am streaming on Twitch, YouTube or in our community discord.
GENERAL RULES FOR INVENTORY MANAGEMENT
Before I start delving into the nitty-gritty details of inventory management, I want to cover some general tools you need to be aware of. It took me a few months of playing FFXIV before I realized these functions existed, but once I started utilizing them it made everything much easier.
ALWAYS SEARCH FOR ITEMS /ISEARCH
The first thing I would always recommend doing is using the search function before you put anything into any of your inventory bags. To do this players will simply need to right-click whatever resource they are planning on putting away and then click “Search for Item.” This will inform you whether or not you have an item in any of your storage compartments including your Armoury Chest, Chocobo Saddlebag, Armoire, Glamour Dresser, or any of your Retainer’s Inventory.
For me, I find this most useful when I’m trying to purchase Gear using a currency other than Gil, such as Tomestones of Poetics. While yes, Tomestones of Poetics are easy to get, I use them frequently for Gardening and while I could simply turn my mispurchases in for Grand Company Seals, I’d rather just not waste the Tomestones.
Players can also use /isearch and type in a single word from the resource they are looking for to pull up a list of any items they have that go by that name. For example, if you type in /isearch Lumber you will get a list of all the different Lumbers you are holding in various inventories. Similarly, players will be able to right-click on these options to see which inventory they are stashed in.
When I got back into the game, I didn’t realize how many wasted inventory slots I had since I put the same resource in multiple Retainer’s inventories. I will still accidentally do this every so often, especially now that I have 8 Retainers to keep track of since I’ve been doing tests on the best ways to make Gil with your Retainers and since I power levelled my Retainers using Quick Ventures… well I’m sure you can imagine the mess that is all the random resources I have.
MAKE SURE YOU TURN OFF AUTO-PLACEMENT INTO THE ARMOURY
I won’t lie, at first, I didn’t even realize that having the game auto-sort your resources into your Armoury would be such a problem and it wasn’t until I started playing on my Alt that I noticed it.
Although I’ll cover more on the Armoury and why you will want to keep it clear, it’s important to cover a few reasons why it can be beneficial.
If you’re a player who plays only a couple of Roles in FFXIV the nuisance of clearing out your Armoury isn’t going to be as prevalent as for those who play multiple Roles. You see when players press the Recommended Gear button in their Character Menu it will only allocate Gear that is currently stored in the player’s Armoury Chest. So, if players have disabled new Gear from being placed automatically in their Armoury they will have to manually check whether their new Gear is better than whatever they are currently wearing before trading it into their Grand Company.
Now, for a new player or players who are levelling Jobs under level 50, this can somewhat be a lifesaver, however, as soon as a player hits level 50 Gear Drops tend to lose their Value as Tomestone Gear is always the most ideal Gear to wear.
I would realistically recommend that every player turns off the auto-sort since managing new Gear from your inventory isn’t difficult to do. This is mostly because several pieces of Gear cannot be traded into your Grand Company such as the newest tier of Gear as well as any pieces that are meant solely for Glamour. Ultimately it is these pieces of Gear that clutter your Armoury in the long run and you tend to notice it most when you begin your MGP farming and need different glamours each week for the Fashion Report.
Luckily for players, there are a variety of options available to them when it comes to the auto-sort function and here’s all you need to know.
To apply changes to your auto-sort players must first head into the Character Configuration menu by hitting escape. In this menu, players will see an image that looks like Sack and Gears, which is titled “Item Settings.” At the very top of this section, you will see the option to enable or disable the auto-storage of newly obtained items, though players can also turn off the auto-storage of newly crafted items as well.
The biggest quality of life was no longer being confused about why my Armoury was filled even though I had just met with my Grand Company. Since I regularly farm side content like Bozja or even The Firmament, my inventory would get filled with random accessories and Glamours I couldn’t simply trade away. Not only that, but on the off chance that I haven’t properly cleared my inventory when entering a Duty I can simply throw any Gear into the Armoury so I can keep rolling on loot. Since, for the most part, Duty Loot can be traded into your Grand Company immediately, there is less concern with items being forgotten and causing frustration in the future.
ADVICE FOR YOUR MAIN INVENTORY
Although players have 140 slots in their main inventory this gets filled very quickly and regularly. This is especially true when players are completing side content or gathering.
The issue with having a cluttered main inventory is that players will not be able to pick up new resources and will not be able to complete Retainer Ventures unless they have two open inventory slots, even if the Venture only brings back a single item. To me, the worst circumstances for this are when running Duties since you can get between 2-10 pieces of Gear or resources, not including the RNG Mob Drops.
The game never gives players a warning when they miss out on loot drops, though a warning will appear on the screen when players have 3 inventory slots left.
In my opinion, the best practice is to have at the very minimum half of your final inventory filled, this means at least 20 slots available. Ideally, players would always have at least 35 slots open, meaning their final container would be empty. Now, this isn’t always possible and will have to do with the content they are running and more notably some side content will require players to have more inventory space available such as Eureka or the Diadem. To give you an idea, the Diadem on average needs a minimum of 16 inventory slots for me each time I enter it and there’s nothing worse than having to leave it just to clear your inventory.
The following are the only resources that remain in my Main Inventory:
The most recent raid turn-ins
Resources I’m regularly using for crafting
Alliance Raid Coins for Gear Upgrades
Gold Saucer VIP Card
Raisins (cheapest XP)
Potions of Strength/Dexterity/Piety
In regards to side-content resources, I will only keep them in my main inventory if I am currently farming it without thinking about taking a break.
HOW TO USE YOUR RETAINER’S INVENTORIES
A Retainer’s Inventory can easily become a dumping ground, especially when you need to quickly get rid of items from your inventory before doing loot-rewarding content. I’ve found a few things that significantly help me avoid this from happening.
First, I’ve started entrusting retainers only with resources that pertain to their profession, so my Botanist only carries Lumber/Cloth, Combat only carries Leather and my Miner only carries Metals/Stones. While there is some overlap with each of the professions, since some can bring resources of the same category, I would segregate them between which Retainer can bring them back.
Of course, if your Retainers all have the same job, you’ll just want to note which will carry what resources. If you are a forgetful bean you can leave a note on your Retainer by selecting the retainer and choosing the option near the bottom of the list. This comment will appear when you hover over your Retainer.
Once you’ve set up what resources your Retainers are going to carry I would always use the “Entrust Duplicates” option when emptying your inventory. Not only will this save you time by having you avoid needing to right-click on every resource you want to deposit, but it will also allow you to decide where to place the remaining resources and question if you want to keep them or not.
I will cover which resources I would deem a priority to hold onto later in this post if you’re still running out of space in your Retainers.
HOW TO USE YOUR CHOCOBO SADDLEBAG
Once players have gotten their Chocobo Companion they will gain access to a healthy number of inventory slots. This inventory can be accessed anywhere other than Duties, meaning it is perfect for storing the items you don’t always need, but still want to regularly access.
I would strongly recommend that you put the following types of items in your Chocobo Saddlebag:
Relic Weapons you are working on
Tokens/Materials for side content
Manuals or Potions you won’t need for this expansion, but are saving for the next
Seeds and Soils, especially if you crossbreed multiple crops
If you’re filling up your Chocobo Saddlebag even while only placing these kinds of resources take note of where you are going to be using these items. If they are used near a Retainer Bell, throw them into your Retainer, however, if you will need them on the fly make sure they stay in your Saddlebag to avoid having to teleport unnecessarily.
As an extra note for the Gardeners. I prefer only taking out the seeds and soil I’m about to use from my Saddlebag as the UI for gardening can sometimes be… well… unclear. There have been many times when I almost used Shroud Soil instead of Potting Soil or Thanalan Soil by mistake because I’m exhausted, so this helps me avoid making mistakes and essentially wasting Gil. I was surprised to hear that my husband also does this as he is significantly more cautious than me, though he also does this to avoid wasting inventory slots as he doesn’t garden nearly as often as I do.
RESOURCES I SUGGEST YOU HOLD ONTO
There are very few resources in the game that a player cannot get on a whim and will require some effort to recover these mostly include Bones, Reagents and Leather. The only other category of resource on this list are timed node resources, but the common factor of all of these is that your Retainer can only bring back a finite amount whenever they are sent on a Venture.
You see, the maximum number of resources a Battlecraft Retainer can bring back is 15 and a piece of Leather can take 3-4 Skins or Hides. As for timed node resources, a Retainer can only bring back a maximum of 11 at a time, with some resources being as low as 1.
Now, if you’re someone who has time to waste and doesn’t think they’re going to use any of these resources I would take a look at the Market Board to see if they are selling for a decent amount of Gil instead of quick selling them.
In terms of Cloth, Lumber, Stone, Metal and other resources that can be obtained by Gatherers, I would only hold onto resources from the current expansion or the highest 5 levels of the previous expansions.
As for extremely low-level resources, there are a number I would also hold onto especially if regularly utilize your Alchemist or the Smiths. These include Effervescent Water, Silver Ore, and Stiperston as they are typically used in many intermediate crafts of all levels.
While getting these resources tends to be really easy, especially since Retainers can bring back 50 of them at a time within 40 minutes, it tends to be annoying to reacquire them when you could simply send your Retainer for the higher-level resource. Honestly, as soon as I realized how many of these resources were required in the higher-level intermediate crafts, I ended up sending my Retainers out for hundreds of them so I never had to think about it again. Admittedly, I do a lot more crafting than the Average player as the majority of my Gil is made this way so having my Retainers free to do my bidding is a major priority.
CONVERT YOUR RESOURCES TO NORMAL QUALITY
I’m very hit-and-miss with this tip since I’ve made a decent amount of Gil by overpricing High-Quality resources. Now, a lot of this is simply because of the server I am on and wouldn’t be possible on all servers.
To be fully honest, I only hold onto high-quality resources and will sell normal-quality resources on the Market Board immediately because of the luck I’ve had with selling high-qualities, though realistically this becomes less and less of a priority. Essentially High-Quality resources are only going to be used by newer players or players who are levelling their Crafters and I can admit there have been days where selling a stack of NQ resources is much more profitable than waiting for an overpriced HQ item to sell. Not to mention, it’s much easier and faster to set up Quick Synthesis rather than have to run a Macro over and over again to guarantee an HQ item, even when the Macro is two steps.
While in theory, I agree that converting everything to NQ is the better choice, especially as more players gain access to Trained Eye, I would base this on what you are doing with a resource. If you are selling it regularly or if it is from the current expansion, I would keep it at HQ, however, if it is a lower-tier resource I would convert it to NQ since most players will have access to Trained Eye for a quick 100% quality. Of course, if you are willing to take the time to check the Market Board to see whether HQ versions of this resource are selling often this is going to be the best option as the resource may be used for some turn-ins which players need HQ resources to craft.
Typically resources that are at level x9 sell more frequently as high-quality since they are regularly used for Custom Deliveries.
PUT YOUR FAVOURITE HOUSING ITEMS
Whether you already have a house or are still bidding to get the house of your dreams, I would strongly recommend that you hold any objects you think you will use in the future in your housing storage.
Players who are still in the bidding process should buy an apartment in advance as they will get a healthy amount of Housing Storage and will be able to move these objects between their new house and the apartment at any point, the only warning is that players will not be able to sell any items they have stored as they will become Character Bound.
I have items in my housing storage I may never use since I still like the look of them. Previously these items took up precious Retainer space and since they can’t stack it became a massive problem.
SAVE YOUR GEAR IN GLAMOUR DRESSER
Players who are power levelling their Jobs to max level will often run into problems where their Armoury Chest is too filled with Gear they are prepping for alternate Jobs, especially if players are pre-purchasing gear using Tomestones of Poetics. To avoid this, I would strongly recommend that players put their extra Gear in their Glamour Dresser by using Glamour Prisms as you have 800 slots.
While it might seem like a waste of resources, Glamour Prisms on average cost about 300 Gil and unless you’re someone who regularly farms Tomestones of Poetics it will be the better option for you.
Now, I understand that many players are going to use a good number of Glamour Dresser Slots, especially if you’re a Roleplayer and a piece of advice for you is to ensure that you are aware of what Gear you can throw into the Armoire.
Whenever you hover over a piece of Gear you can see whether it can be placed in the Armoire by checking the little icons in the top right corner. If the third one is lit, this piece of Gear can go into the Armoire which has an infinite amount of space and will save you Glamour Prisms. While this doesn’t necessarily save a whole lot of inventory, it should give you enough space to store your extra Gearsets in your Glamour Dresser.