Housing is coming to PC/Mac on Monday, February 6, and for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on Tuesday, February 21. It’s a long-awaited addition to the game and ZOS has spent much time and effort to bring you a system that is involved and touches nearly all aspects of gameplay in some manner. This intricacy can be both awesome and maddening.
Among the clear high points is the sheer amount of furnishings that can placed in your home and the relatively good free-form placing of those furnishings using the in-game housing editor. The lows stem largely from the inherent complexity of the systems and the grind required to furnish a home without spending real cash.
ZOS tells us there are well over 2,000 individual furniture and decorative items you can place in your home – datamining has actually found close to 3,000 such items. But that doesn’t mean when you first log into the servers on update day you get to immediately do your best Martha Stewart impersonation. The truth is, unless you are willing to spend lots of real money in the Crown Store, housing is a long term project that will require much dedication to the newly added furniture crafting system or large amounts of gold to purchase furniture from players who are mastering the craft. Those who are Crown Store averse will take weeks or months to fill their house with exactly the items they want. So let’s take a look at what you can reasonably expect to accomplish with furnishing on Day 1 of Homestead.
Furniture Crafting: Day 1
You’re in for a grind. A lengthy one. There are over 1100 furniture crafting plans in the game and, except for a dozen of the most basic plans which can be purchased from NPC merchants, they must all be found as drops in the game by rummaging through chests, drawers, crates, NPC pockets, and the bodies of your slain victims.
But that’s not all. Every one of the plans require new harvested materials that you can only get once the update goes live.
- Woodworking Blueprints primarily use Heartwood, from lumber nodes.
- Blacksmithing Diagrams primarily use Regulus, from ore nodes.
- Clothing Patterns primarily use Bast, from fibrous plants, or Clean Pelts, from beasts and other sources of leather.
- Alchemy Formulas primarily use Alchemical Resin, from mushrooms and alchemy plants.
- Enchanting Praxises primarily use Mundane Runes, from runestones.
- Provisioning Designs primarily use Decorative Wax, from crates, barrels, and other sources of provisioning ingredients.
These items don’t drop from every crate or harvest node either. Testing on PTS puts it at around a 20% drop chance at best on harvest nodes – much lower for decorative wax. While this does pose a significant problem for those wanting to outfit their home exactly as they envision it on day one, it also provides a great money making opportunity for those willing to grind nodes or rummage through every drawer and crate in Tamriel. The initial prices for the new crafting materials and furniture plans will be ludicrously expensive. They will certainly settle over the coming weeks and months, but initially these prices will be outrageous.
Recipe sourcing is influenced by region so if you are in Eastmarch for example, then you will see more Nord style furniture items recipes, and if you are in Alik’r, you should see more Redguard stuff. You will still find other recipes, but the local culture’s recipes will be more common. – Mandi Parker, Systems Designer
So what can you reasonably expect expect to accomplish with furniture crafting on day one?
You should start your furniture crafting endeavor by purchasing and learning the 12 plans that can be bought outright from NPC merchants. These items aren’t fancy. In fact they are plain and boring, but they’re yours and you can make them with your own hands.
- Any Grocer – Burlap Bag
- Any Clothier – Basic Bedroll, Military Stretcher
- Any Blacksmith – Common Bowl, Empty Cup, Practical Hatchet, Butcher Knife
- Any Carpenter – Boarded Box, Cargo Container, Bolted Crate, Reinforced Crate, Stage Platform
These plans will run you 90 gold each and with a little ingenuity you can begin outfitting your home with goods that you made. It’s not the prettiest thing, but it lends itself nicely to a progressive approach to furnishing your home. When you finally find that Woven Argonian Bed Blueprint you’ve been searching for and harvest the materials needed to craft it, you can look upon the change to your home with pride.
So grab your harvesting tools and prepare to hit your favorite route to gather the materials and plans required to start on your path to becoming a master furniture crafter.
Furniture Buying: Day 1
Crafting furniture is only one way to outfit your home. You can also purchase some furnishing items directly from new NPC merchants. One such merchant is the Home Good Furnisher who can be found in every zone of the game. They mostly sell landscape materials such as stone blocks, boulders, rocks, shrubs, ferns, saplings, and trees. These same vendors all sell a smattering of other basic furnishings such as crates, hay beds, planks, tarps and other items. Even with these simple materials you can get really creative with Homestead. See the example to the right from forum user @Sotha_Sil.
The second class of NPC furnishing merchants in the game are Achievement Furnishers. They are also located in every zone of the game and sell specific furnishing items that are tied to a completed achievement for that zone. Depending upon their location, the furnishing items are purchased with gold, alliance points or tel var stones. The items are varied and range from smaller items which can be bought for a couple hundred gold to a large Blood Fountain purchased for 100,000 gold. I mean it’s huge and spurts blood. You can even buy the Throne of Cyrodiil for 250,000 AP if you’re a past emperor.
There are over 250 furnishing items that can be purchased from vendors that are tied to achievements or your alliance rank in the case of Cyrodiil pieces. But not all of them are purchased from Achievement Furnishers. Some are “hidden” on regular merchants. Check alchemists, blacksmiths, hall stewards, mystics, chefs, clothiers, woodworkers, outlaw refuge merchants, and undaunted quartermasters for other themed achievement furnishings. It is important to point out that furnishings that are tied to an achievement or Alliance Rank are bound upon purchase.
Achievement furnishing images courtesy of ESO Fashion
You can even decorate your home with the 297 books from the Mages Guild lorebook library. They can be purchased in their individual collection groupings from mystics once you complete a particular collection. They come as individual books to be placed around your house. Note however, that reading these book copies on alt characters will not advance your Mages Guild skill line.
“Good friends, good books, and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life.” ― Mark Twain
Besides Home Good and Achievement furnishers, you should also be aware of two unique NPCs added to the game. The first is Rolis Hlaalu, the Mastercraft Mediator. You’ll get to meet him by completing Master Crafting Writs which are also added to the game with the Homestead patch. Rolis is the sole source for crafting station furnishings, the target skeleton, the ebony motif chapters and some select legendary furniture plans. These items are not bound and are free to be sold or traded. If you’re interested in these items, you will need to complete master writs yourself or purchase them from other players.
There is also a new Luxury Furnisher, Zanil Theran who can be found in the Hollow City within Coldharbour over the weekend. She has a cycling inventory similar to Adhazabi Aba-daro the Golden in Cyrodiil. Expect her to sell rare and somewhat expensive furnishings. On the PTS, she is selling wedding themed items.
Crown Store: Day 1
There are 1181 furniture items available for purchase in the Crown Store. Of those, over 1,000 of the items can be crafted or purchased from NPC vendors within the game. Nearly all the apparent “exclusive” purchases have variants in other styles that can be acquired in game. While there will undoubtedly be rare and awesome exclusive furniture items in the Crown Store shortly enough, they don’t appear to be there at launch. There is absolutely no requirement to use the Crown Store to furnish your home the way you want it. It’s simply the fastest way.
On the PTS, as of this writing, furniture items range from as little as 10 crowns to as much as 400 crowns per item. The pricing appears to be expediently, dare I say lazily, tied to the quality of the item. With few exceptions standard (white) items are 10 crowns, fine (green) items are 50 crowns, superior (blue) items are 150 crowns, and lastly epic (purple) quality items are 400 crowns.
But the quality of the item has nothing to do with the size or type of item. You can find a bowl at each level of quality. Whether you want to spend 10 crowns on a rough common bowl or 400 crowns on a gilded Redguard bowl is entirely up to you. That is to say a frugal subscriber can spend their monthly allotment of 1500 crowns acquiring 150 furniture items from the Crown Store. Admittedly, the offerings for 10 crowns are quite lackluster. You are more likely to spend your 1500 crowns on 20-25 fine furniture items filling in the holes with 25-50 standard items. But for subscribers, outfitting your starter home with cheaper quality goods from the Crown Store can be a great start to your housing experience.
The crown store housing interface is easily reached from inside the housing editor.
Housing is finally coming to ESO and it will be here before you know it. With nearly 3,000 furnishing items to choose from and over 1,100 furniture plans to master, no two houses will be the same. Hopefully we’ve better set your mindset for what you should expect to accomplish at launch. Homestead is a complex addition to the game. Acquiring your perfect abode will take time and determination. Welcome home.