Fate Grand Order: What Are FGO Craft Essences … and How To Use Them

While Fate Grand Order is all about collecting players’ favorite Servants, doing so gets a lot easier when they understand FGO Craft Essences, the items that function a lot like equipment in traditional RPG titles. Fate Grand Order Craft Essences provide Servants with various important bonuses, rounding out their skills – often referred to as “kits” by veteran players – and making up for any of the shortcomings that they naturally possess.

For those unfamiliar with FGO, the game is a mobile title developed by Delightworks and published by Aniplex. FGO is based on the extremely popular Fate franchise, perhaps most well-known in the West thanks to its anime titles like Fate/Stay Night and Fate/Zero. FGO even has its own anime that follows certain chapters, or Singularities, in the game. With mobile gaming making up a large portion of video game profits and more fans starting to use their phones as primary platforms for gaming, FGO continues to remain consistently one of the most popular titles available on Android and iOS.

Related: 25 Of The Strongest Anime Characters, Officially Ranked

One element of the game that might be confusing to the many new players picking it up over time is FGO Craft Essences. Learning what FGO Craft Essences are, how best to use them, and how to acquire them is an important step in stepping up any player’s game. For those new to Fate Grand Order, we’ve put together a rundown of all the basics of FGO Craft Essences and how to best use them with the Servants on a given Master’s roster.

First and foremost, aspiring Masters will want to know exactly what FGO Craft Essences are. Craft Essences are cards that exist outside a Servant’s given Quick, Arts, and Buster deck and can, with some exceptions, be equipped by any Servant. Craft Essences give a Servant a bonus to their Hit Points (HP) or Attack (ATK), with some offering extra stats for both. Each Craft Essence also has a special effect attributed to it, and the range of these effects spans extremely simple ones to some complex, niche functionalities. In general, lower rarity FGO Craft Essences will have much simpler effects as they’re the ones that will likely be encountered by newer players most often, while rare Craft Essences are harder to understand at first glance but offer some of the game’s most powerful bonus effects.

Getting FGO Craft Essences is easy, though the best ones will typically be locked behind certain events or as 5-Star rolls in the gacha system. Players can simply roll as they would for any Servant and they will also acquire Craft Essences along the way. Some promotions also give out Craft Essences, and some strong options can be bought in the event store of a given event simply by acquiring enough currency by completing quests, so that’s strongly recommended for new players to focus on when these offers roll around.

It’s important to preface this by saying that virtually all of the Craft Essences available in the game at least have some use, even if they’re not the best option. While there are some very weak ones as 1-Star or 2-Star options, anything at 3-Star or higher tends to be viable, either as an alternative to a rarer option or as a niche use on its own.

However, some FGO Craft Essences simply stand much taller above the rest. As a rule, it’s recommended to break down Craft Essences based on the bonuses they give, with a high priority paid to:

Increasing the Quick/Arts/Buster card performance of a ServantIncreasing Critical Stars earned per turnBeginning combat with NP gauge charge

Of course, these options require some further explanation. Servants have a five card deck assigned to them that’s made up of Quick, Arts, and Buster cards in varying numbers. Some Servants skew very heavily towards one option, such as 3 Arts, 1 Quick, and 1 Buster card decks. In those scenarios, it can be extremely useful to find a Craft Essence like the 5-Star Another Ending, which provides Arts +10% and Critical Damage +20% to the Servant that equips it.

If new players want a quick guide to the most powerful FGO Craft Essence options available, many of the game’s best compositions involve speeding up a Servant’s Noble Phantasm usage. Cards like Kaleidoscope or Imaginary Number Magecraft provide a huge boost to starting NP gauge, with the former being used in most of the top-tier compositions currently available in the West.

Not everyone can fire up FGO on their mobile device and drop money on gacha rolls to build up a steady supply of 4-Star and 5-Star Craft Essence options, and that’s okay. While FGO has a deserved reputation as a wallet incinerator, it’s actually remarkably fair in how it is designed from a gameplay perspective. Sure, fans might not get their favorite Servants without spending money, but they can certainly build a late-game composition with only free-to-play gacha rolls and a bit of ingenuity.

Free-to-play Craft Essences with some decent utility for newer players to keep an eye out for are as follows:

Mooncell Automaton: This FGO CE provides a 3% bonus to Buster, Arts, and Quick cards, so it improves the performance of an entire Servant’s deck. This is especially useful in early team comps that can’t afford to be specialized due to Servant or Craft Essence scarcity.The Red Black Keys/The Blue Black Keys/The Green Black Keys: These CEs boost Buster, Arts, and Quick cards respectively by 8%.Parted Sea: If a particular fight begins with a tough attack – and some of them really do – this FGO Craft Essence gives the Servant equipping it a one-time Evasion effect, allowing them to avoid damage for 1 attack. It also provides a minor Debuff Resistance increase of 5% as a bonus, though this really shouldn’t be considered something to bank on.

All of the above Craft Essences are Friend Point friendly, which means users can acquire them at any point in the Free Friend Point Summons.

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Fate Grand Order is available now on Android and iOS mobile devices.

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