Crafting your own LI's and relics is the ultimate payoff for the investment.
Originally Posted by scithen
Crafting your own gear along the way is just gravy, especially the gear that can't be found in quest rewards. Such as Burg's Signals, Captain's Banners, Hunter's Books, Mini's Instruments, LM's Brooches, RK's Chisel/Rifler, Warden's Carvings, etc.
Have you seen the Processing that has been added to all tiers of crafting for Jeweller, Metalsmith, Tailor, Weaponsmith and Woodworker?
that's really not a big deal if I end up needing thousands and thousands of hides, ore, etc just to level up one character's professions.
1 Ingot/Leather/Plank = 16 craft exp
You'll need more materials to master the gathering professions than you will to master the crafting ones.
It's not the reward, it's the fact that the instances are full of Forester, Prospector and Scholar nodes. But, you actually need to have those gathering Professions to make use of them.
As for the crafting instances, or whatever they are, are you referring to the ones such as in Moria? Complete the quests, get keys and can buy bundles of resources?
Crafted Third age vs. Dropped/Bartered Third ages? It was reported that Crafted Third ages had slightly better stats than Dropper/Bartered at lvl 85. I don't know if that's still true for the lvl 95 LI's.
How do they compare to the ones you can make via melding at a relic master? The same, just requiring different materials (shards vs crafting mats)? Or are they higher level, better stats, etc?
Third age vs. Second/First ages? Second/First ages have better stats off the bat, and have a greater amount of points to rank up legacies.