FFXIV Island Sanctuary Guide and Tips: Everything You Need to Know

Our Island Sanctuary guide prepares you for the economic realities of island life. Handicrafts, supply, demand, Mammet management, and more!

The much-anticipated Island Sanctuary content for Final Fantasy XIV is finally here thanks to Patch 6.2. This new type of content breaks off from the main game and offers a chill vibe with your very own instanced island. Crafting items, gathering materials, building a base of operations, and taking care of animals are all part of your new getaway. In this Island Sanctuary guide, we’ll walk you through the basics to get you started on the right foot when step onto your own island.

First thing’s first, you will need to unlock Island Sanctuary itself. Find the quest named “Seeking Sanctuary” from the NPC Clueless Crier in Old Sharlayan (X: 11.9, Y: 11.0). Follow this until it leads you to your island. The only requirement is that you must have completed Endwalker MSQ (through 6.0). Even though crafting and gathering are core parts of Island Sanctuary, there are no Job-based prerequisites for Disciples of the Hand or Land. You can enjoy the content without any prior crafting or gathering experience.

You can leave the island by using Teleport, Return, or the boat located on the island (X: 9.2 Y: 28.3). Speak to Baldin in Lower La Noscea (X: 24.9, Y: 34.8) to return to your island. You may also queue for duties while on your island, which is a nice perk for those who have long wait times when matchmaking.

Island Sanctuary is an active experience with several unique systems and mechanics. You get a solid tutorial in the form of quests that walk you through the basic activities, but afterward, you’re very much left on your own. Here, we’re going to distill the most important things to remember in the early goings.

Island Sanctuary Guide: How Everything Works

At its core, Island Sanctuary revolves around gathering materials on the island to craft various things: buildings for your base, tools for gathering, food for livestock, and handicrafts to earn the Cowries (the island’s currency). There are general quests (called Visions) and progression with Island EXP from completing various tasks. This then levels up your Sanctuary Rank, which rewards you with new structures to build and features to tinker with.

Everything is tracked in your main Island Sanctuary HUD element called the Islekeep’s Index. This is the menu that lets you access all the vital information for activities. It cannot be closed for a good reason — everything flows through the Islekeep’s Index.

A lot of systems are at play here and they all feed into each other like one whole ecosystem. So, let’s go through each gameplay element and distill them to their essentials.

Efficient Gathering Across the Island

To gather, you must be in Gather Mode from the Islekeep’s Index. Gathering nodes will light up across the island, and different objects will yield different materials. It’s as simple as walking up to the object/node and clicking it. Definitely explore the island as much as the game lets you and hit different types of gathering nodes. Basic stuff.

Since you need specific materials for specific crafts, it’s best to keep mental notes of what each object/node yields and where to find them. But if you need a reference, information on material locations will be kept into your Sanctuary Gathering Log. It features an in-game map that marks where to find each material; just pull it up from the Islekeep’s Index. It won’t show every single area the material is found, but one pointer is better than none.

We already have a handful of guides on where to find key materials with maps and screenshots to show what their gathering nodes look like in-game.

As for tracking the quantities of whichever material you need, use the menus found within the Islekeep’s Index; particularly Sanctuary Crafting Log, Manage Hideaway, and Material Allocation. You can leave these open on your screen to keep tabs throughout the gathering process. Each one of these menus is for certain types of crafts, as outlined below:

  • Sanctuary Crafting Log: Features multiple tabs for different types of key items; Tools, Feed, and Restraints.
  • Manage Hideaway: Features the buildings you can construct and renovate with their material lists.
  • Material Allocation: Features a full list of materials required for the Handicrafts queued in your production schedule.

After all, you should be out gathering materials with a purpose. The following sections will make clear what that purpose is and how to always be working towards it.

Crafting Better (or More) Tools

The tutorial teaches you how to craft your first set of tools: Islekeep’s Stone Hatchet and Islekeep’s Stone Hammer. With these, you’re able to chop trees and mine rocks across the island. As you progress, more advanced tools will be made available. But these are what you with with in the early hours.

Everything crafting related is tracked and done from the Sanctuary Crafting Log. You can choose Tools, Feed, or Restraints from the sidebar to see what you can craft. This will also show you which materials you need, the quantity required, and the quantity in your inventory. Keep this menu open when you’re out gathering specific materials to craft an item if you want help tracking how much you have and need.

Tools are permanent and newer ones become available as you progress but both Feed and Restraints are consumables and must continually be crafted. Feed is made with various types of food-based materials, and it’s specifically for feeding your livestock to make them happy and produce materials to gather off of them. Certain materials like Sanctuary Milk, Sanctuary Fleece, and so on are only gathered from happy animals (more on that later) in your Hideaway. Restraints are used to capture animals that go back to the Pasture to then be taken care of. Bigger and rarer animals require more advanced Restraints to capture. And speaking of capturing wildlife…

Catching Animals

Snatching up animals across the island is a bit more involved than gathering. As mentioned above, you need to craft Restraints, which are disposable, single-use items. When you’re out in the field, switch to Capture Mode from the Islekeep’s Index and select a Restraint to use. The wildlife will become targetable; just walk up and click on them. If you catch an animal, you’ll find them back at the Pasture in your Hideaway.

You’ll start with only having access to Makeshift Nets, which are fine for catching Lost Lambs, Opo-opo, or Ornery Karakul. But some animals can escape a capture, and some just can’t be caught by a dinky net. As you progress, you’ll have access to better Restraints to capture the likes of Chocobos and Island Nannies. Eventually, you’ll be capturing bigger and rarer creatures.

It’s good to have a variety of animals in your Pasture to yield different materials. Or if you’re already planning ahead, you can focus on having animals that produce a specific material you seek. But to even consider that, you need to think about food, which leads into crops and farming.

Crops and Farming

To craft the Feed necessary to sustain and make your animals happy, you need to be growing produce. You get produce by taking care of your crops at the Cropland in your Hideaway. However, it’s a multistep process.

First, you need seeds in your inventory, which you get from gathering in the field. Next, you need to switch to Sow Mode and plant seeds in your Cropland. Then, you need to switch to Water Mode to water your crops. If it’s raining in-game, your crops will already be watered. Crops need to maintain high moisture levels to grow, but it’s fairly easy to just check in and make sure they’re watered.

You will need to wait real-world time in order for your crops to grow (upwards of two full days). Crops will be “Dry” after 36 hours of no water, so you’ll need to make sure they’re watered at least once per cycle. It’ll be smart to keep this cycle going if you want to keep crafting Feed to keep your animals happy and producing materials.

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Below is a list of seeds and the crops they’ll produce:

Crops will be ready to gather when they’re sparkling; just swoop them up in Gather Mode. Now, onto managing the animals.

Feeding the Animals

Animals in your Pasture must be fed regularly in order to produce materials. To do so, you have to switch to Feed Mode in the Islekeep’s Index and select the type of food to give them. Better quality the food will make them happier, which means the material yield will be better when they’re ready. There are three different types of Feed you can craft:

Island Sweetfeed can be made with only Island Apples which you can gather straight up. It’s cheap and only boosts an animal’s mood to “content.” Island Greenfeed is what requires crops and boosts an animal’s mood to “chipper.” Premium Island Greenfeed requires two crops of any kind and boosts an animal’s mood to “gleeful.”

Managing your animals is similar to maintaining your crops, except you don’t have to check in to water them. As long as you stay on top of crafting Feed, it’s an easy process. Keep in mind that getting material out of your livestock also takes real-world time.

Facilities and Construction

As you progress and rank up, you can build more facilities and upgrade your existing ones. The tutorial walks you through constructing your Cozy Cabin, which is basically your house. This is where you talk to the Enterprising Exporter to sell excess materials for Island Cowries and the Horrendous Hoarder to spend Seafarer’s Cowries on sweet rewards like glam, mounts, dyes, and more.

If you click Manage Hideaway in your Islekeep’s Index, you can see your existing facilities and new ones your can construct. If you select a plot and click “Review” at the bottom, it’ll open the Construction menu. Not only will this show what you can build, but it also tracks the materials required to build it. The first few facilities do not have wait times to finish constructing, but most other do require real-world time to complete.

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As you progress, more empty plots will be available in your Hideaway. The first few structures in your settlement do not require real-world wait time to build, but future ones will. Shortly after the tutorial, you’re free to do whatever you want. However, we suggest aiming to build a second Workshop or a Landmark (Quixotic Windmill or Towering Tree Fort). You’ll also be able to upgrade to a Cozy Cabin II, which looks much nicer. A eventually, you’ll be able to build the Granary, which lets you sent Mammets on material gathering ventures so you don’t have to (for a price).

Market Forces of Handicrafts in Island Sanctuary

The main feature is Island Sanctuary is the Workshop. After all, the material hoarding you do from gathering in the field, growing crops, feeding animals you’ve captured for more materials — that’s all in service of running the Workshop. The tutorial does a decent Job of laying out all the details of Handicrafts, creating schedules, and how to maximize efficiency, but we’ll distill it down a bit more here.

Talk to the Tactful Taskmaster to manage the Handicraft production schedule. Here, you can assign what your hardworking Mammets make, all of which runs on real-time scheduling. Every Handicrafts requires different materials to make. Their value is determined by an in-game supply and demand chart. You can check it by clicking the “Review Supply & Demand” button on your production schedule menu. This is where you’ll see variables like the severity of surplus, popularity, demand trends, and predictions to help inform your production schedule.

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Making Handicrafts is pretty much like playing stocks. You’ll have to make decisions on what to invest in based on market forces to get the most return. The more in-demand something is at the time it finishes production, the better your return will be — this is a big way you earn Seafarer’s Cowries.

Once a Handicraft finishes production, it’s immediately sold into the aether. These items don’t actually exist, they’re just here as tools of an imaginary economy. But the challenge comes from being able to earn as many Seafarer’s Cowries for your efforts, the crucial currency for the best Island Sanctuary rewards.

Everything runs on a schedule and each Handicraft takes a certain amount of time to make. But there are ways to optimize your production. The efficiency bonus leads to higher yields per assignment, and more Seafarer’s Cowries in return. This is done by chaining similarly categorized Handicrafts to be made one after the other in the schedule. On the flipside, if you schedule the same item too frequently, you’ll burn out your Mammet workers and won’t yield the results you want.

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Remember that you can only put your Mammets to work five days in a week (like all good employers). You’re able to change which of the five days they work by slicking the “Set Rest Cycles” button in the production schedule menu.

Another important thing to remember: you can schedule production of a Handicraft even if you don’t have the materials required at the moment. You’ll just need to go out and gather the required materials before production is scheduled to start. This is a smart move, however, because it lets you put the Material Allocation menu to good use.

From the Islekeep’s Index, click the clamshell icon to open the Material Allocation menu. You’ll see that it automatically tracks the quantities of the materials required for the production schedule you set. Most importantly, it will calculate and list your inventory deficit of each material for you. If you are in the negative, go out and get as many of those materials as necessary. Easy as that.

Cowries Rule Everything Around Mammets

Two currencies exist in Island Sanctuary: Seafarer’s Cowries and Islander’s Cowries. For the purposes of this guide, we emphasize Seafarer’s Cowries since they the premiere currency used to purchase the cool items. As mentioned above, it’s also the currency that rules the Handicraft market, makes your Mammets take tasks for you. Completing early Visions grant you with a sizeable chunk of Seafarer’s Cowries. Afterward, you’ll be mostly subject to the Handicraft market in order to earn them in bulk.

Below is a list of the notable items you can buy with Seafarer’s Cowries and their prices:

I would suggest holding onto your early batch of Seafarer’s Cowries. You can upgrade your Cropland and Pasture early on, but they require 1,000 Seafarer’s Cowries each. And another round of Hideaway expansion requires 500 Seafarer’s Cowries. These are good investments to make your operation more efficient and eventually those coveted mounts and glam pieces.

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I made the mistake of buying the hat immediately. At least Chie looks cool.

Quick Island Sanctuary Tips

Although the tutorial does a good job of showing you the ropes, there are a few things that you can get in the habit of doing to help make things easier for yourself.

  • Go to your Keybinds and map Duty Action I to an easily accessible button. This is for your Isle Sprint which refreshes well before your sprinting speed boost expires. You’ll be using this a lot.
    • Likewise, have a mount mapped to an accessible button for longer treks across the island.
  • After the tutorial, work towards crafting Basic Mammet-sized Builder’s Tools which lets you progress and clear room for more buildings.
  • Multiple Workshops gives you access to multiple production lines for Handicrafts. If you’re ready to maximize profits, build a second Workshop.
  • Upgrade your Cozy Cabin to Cozy Cabin II! It looks nice (and I think it gives you access to new stuff??)
  • Work towards building a Landmark; this helps Mammet morale, making them more efficient.
  • When gathering materials for a specific building, open the Manage Hideaway menu and click the “Review” button on a structure you want to upgrade or plot you want to build on to track materials required.
  • Don’t forget you can schedule Handicraft production ahead of time, and really the whole week. As stated above, it’s smart to do so even if you don’t have the materials necessary yet, because the Material Allocation menu will help track what you need.
  • If you have trouble remembering the locations for materials you need to gather, refer to the Sanctuary Gathering Log — the map will mark a location it can be found.
    • It won’t display every possible location. For that, we’re building out our own Island Sanctuary maps and item guides (currently a work-in-progress).
  • Challenge Log has been updated with Island Sanctuary goals. Currently there are only two super-simple goals, which reward 1,000 Seafarer Cowries each. It’s not much, but it’s something.

We have plenty of Island Sanctuary guide content lined up in the near future. For now, you can check out our quick guides on how to find Island Cotton BollsIsland Hemp, or Island Copper, all of which are key materials for making progress — they all come with detailed maps to make things easier, too! For all things Patch 6.2, check out our patch notes summary, breakdown of FFXIV 6.2 Job changes, and batch of Abyssos raid guides.