What are Ventures?
The term ‘Venture’ actually refers to two very closely related things. First, Ventures are small missions that you send your retainer on, and when they return they bring you back items. In order to send them on these assignments you’ll need to pay them a special currency which are also called ‘Ventures’.
It’s a good idea to always have your retainer on a Venture, since it’s easy to get the currency (which isn’t really used for anything else) and you’ll passively obtain some useful items from your retainers.
How to Obtain Ventures?
There are many ways to get your hands on Ventures, some more efficient than others. Which you choose will depend on your daily activities, as well as your other goals in the game.
Grand Company Seals (200)
This is my preferred method of stocking up on Ventures. They only cost 200 seals, which is pretty cheap considering how many seals you get from turning in dungeon gear with Expert Delivery. Even stuff from ARR will give you more than 200, and a single piece of loot from the expansions will give enough to buy several.
Whenever I need to dump seals to avoid overcapping, I always grab a bunch of Ventures. Gear is plentiful if you always opt to Greed on loot, so once you unlock Expert Delivery you’ll probably have a steady income of company seals.
If you’re trying to level desynthesis with all your dungeon loot, you’ll find your Grand Company Seals start to run low (I know mine did), so either keep up with some other activities like your daily turn-ins and your Grand Company Challenge Log section, or consider buying Ventures with one of the other currencies.
Allied Seals (4)
You can buy Ventures from the Hunt Billmaster for 4 Allied Seals. It’s pretty cheap, considering you can earn 24 per day with a few teleports, and a further 40 if you wait around for FATEs (which personally I don’t). Even if you just do the single weekly Elite Mark for 100 seals, that’s enough for 25 Ventures.
Considering that high level players are kind of going out of their way to get Allied Seals, this may not sound worthwhile, and you may want to prioritize saving up for some of the more expensive items available like riding maps, minions, or weapon glamours.
If you don’t own the expansions yet, or if you don’t mind hunting down a lower level mark during a dungeon queue, I recommend at least slaying the Elite Mark each week for a significant payout of Allied Seals.
Centurio Seals (4)
Ventures are sold by Ardolain <Clan Centurio Member> in the Forgotten Knight in Foundation for 4 Centurio Seals. This is the only Centurio vendor who sells them, even though this hunt currency is used in both Heavensward and Stormblood content. You can still obtain the Stormblood Mark Bills in Kugane or Rhalgr’s Reach in order to earn more seals, in addition to the Heavensward Bills outside the Forgotten Knight.
Similar to the Allied Seals, this is a really cheap, easy way to grab Ventures, even if you just grab the weekly elite marks. If you do happen to have jobs between level 50-70, these can double as a small source of experience while waiting in queues at the same time as collecting Centurio Seals.
Keep in mind that there are some bigger ticket items with this currency, so if you’re saving up for a riding map, glamour, or other cosmetic item, buying Ventures with this currency may delay your goal of purchasing that.
Beast Tribes (1 Daily Quest)
Some Beast Tribes give you Ventures from their currency vendors, while some give you them from doing the daily quests. In A Realm Reborn, all beast tribe quests reward 1 Venture each. so you could get up to 12 per day. These may not be the fastest, most efficient means of levelling a low level job, but you might also want to do it for the story, the exclusive mounts, or just to max out your reputation with all of them. Along the way you’ll be earning enough Ventures to keep your retainers occupied.
Interestingly, the Moogle Beast Tribe is the only one that doesn’t give you Ventures from quests or offer them from vendors, despite the other Heavensward Beast Tribes offering them.
The Stormblood Beast Tribes don’t have too many cosmetics to buy, so if you’ve been using these daily to help level through the 60s, you probably have a small stack of currency you can turn into Ventures.
What Can You Buy With Ventures?
Ventures can be used to purchase copies of Modern Vocation for 40 Ventures from the Retainer Vocates in the main cities. These can be used to assign your jobless Retainer a job. For example, if your Retainer is an Archer (which is a class, not a job), you could make them a Bard (which is a job). Or, you could make them a Samurai, Astrologian, etc. Basically anything that uses a Soul Crystal.
This is the only way to get your Retainer to be one of the expansion jobs, since they can only start as a level 1 class, so you have to switch them to a job at level 30. If you only want to play Red Mage, this is the system that ensures you don’t have to level up another class just to have a high level retainer. Remember that your Retainer cannot level up beyond your own level in that same class or job.
Aside from that, the only thing Ventures are used for are sending your Retainer on…Ventures. There are several types to send them on, which I’ll detail below.
Types of Retainer Ventures
To unlock Retainer Ventures you’ll need to complete the level 17 quest ‘An Ill-conceived Venture‘ in one of the three starting cities.
You can send Retainers on three types of Ventures: Targeted Exploration, Open Exploration, and Quick Exploration.
Targeted Exploration will have a different name and allow for specific collection of different items depending on the Retainer’s job. These last 40m – 1h, cost 1 Venture, and reward several of the desired item, as well as a small amount of experience.
If you’ll be playing for a while, or you need a lot of a specific item, these Ventures allow you to passively collect items for crafting or selling on the marketboard while you do other things. I usually send my retainers for the highest level materials I know I’ll use, but you can often collect low level items that sell well depending on your server’s market.
Combat Retainers will embark on Hunting Exploration Ventures. These include drops from monsters such as skins, meats, and many other materials. You’ll get up to 10 of the desired item. Quantity and Exploration time improve with your Combat Retainer’s average iLvl.
Gathering Retainers go on Mining, Botany, or Fishing Exploration Ventures, depending on their job. For gatherers, they can only be sent to collect an item if you have gathered that item yourself at least once. You’ll get up to 30 of the desired item. Quantity and Exploration time improve with your Gathering Retainer’s Gathering stat.
Open Exploration will also have a different name depending on the Retainer’s job. These Ventures last 18 hours, cost 2 Ventures, and reward your Retainer with a very large amount of experience. They also bring back Allagan Pieces which are autosell fodder. These may come in handy for your weekly Doman Enclave donation.
This is an excellent Venture for levelling up your Retainer, or if you prefer to spend minimal time managing Ventures while still reaping some benefit. I recommend sending your Retainers on Open Exploration Ventures when you’re done playing for the day.
Combat Retainers will take on Field Exploration Ventures. You need to meet your Combat Retainer’s average iLvl requirement, and you’ll get one of several possible rewards, usually from among the possible Hunting Exploration options available at that level. Allagan Pieces are always included.
Gathering Retainers have Highland, Woodland, or Waterside Exploration Ventures, depending on their job. These Ventures have a Gathering stat requirement. The possible rewards will include items available for similar level Targeted Exploration Ventures.
The final type of Venture is Quick Exploration, for Retainers that have reached at least level 10. These last 1 hour and cost 2 Ventures. Your Retainer will earn Experience and an item according to their gear. As with the other Ventures, average item level affects Combat Retainers, while Gathering stat affects Gathering Retainers.
The list of items is quite large because it includes a lot of dungeon and trial drops. The better your Retainer’s gear, the better items will be included on the list of potential rewards. Some items are exclusive to quick exploration, notably the ‘General-purpose’ dyes, though these can be purchased on the marketboard from other players.
There’s an old list of exclusive items here, but I expect it’s out of date and incomplete now.
If you’re not looking for a specific crafting material but you do want to make use of your Retainers, then send them on Quick Exploration Ventures. They can give better experience as well as some interesting (and shiny) pieces of equipment that you would otherwise have to grind duties for.
Which Ventures to Send Retainers on?
My advice is to first focus on levelling your retainer. If they aren’t yet max level, send them on targeted exploration or quick exploration while you’re online. If you want something specific at their current level you would use targeted exploration, otherwise, spend the extra Venture for quick exploration. When you’re done playing for the day, send them on the long, 18h open exploration Venture since it’s a large amount of experience.
If your retainers are already max level, use them to pick up high level materials such as skins, lumber, or water (consistent supply for crafting or selling). Alternatively, use quick exploration if you’re less interested in gil and more interested in uncommon glamours, dyes, and gear to trade for company seals. If you’re limited on game time but don’t want the resources to go to waste, just send them on open exploration Ventures and autosell what they bring back. This is minimum effort on your part, but you still earn some regular gil.
I hope this helped you manage your retainers a little better. Let me know in the comments section if you have any other questions about earning or spending Ventures.