Foraging is a survival skill used to find items which may be used in alchemy, fletching, or any number of other pursuits. Healing herbs are the best-known of the foraged items, but one can also forage to find wax for candlemaking, limbs and sticks for fletching, firewood, tea leaves, coffee beans, alchemical catalysts, grass and vines for braiding, branches for carving, or even items that can be used as improvised weapons, such as rocks and logs.
Forage Usage: ------------------------------------------- FORAGE <item> FORAGE <item> careful FORAGE <item> precise ------------------------------------------- COLLECT <item> is also an available option.
Survival primary guilds can use all of the options. Survival secondary guilds cannot FORAGE PRECISE. Survival tertiary guilds cannot FORAGE CAREFUL or FORAGE PRECISE.
The careful option searches for a higher quality example of the foraged item, and thus has a slightly higher level of difficulty, and gives a longer roundtime. Precise is similarly more difficult still, with an even longer roundtime than careful, and results in an even higher quality example of the item. The more foraging skill you have, the better quality item you will find.
Collect will give a pile of the target item if successful, with a minimum roundtime of 15 seconds. The greater your foraging skill, the more items will be in your pile. The appearance of a pile will vary based on the guild of the person who collected it.
The order of quality from lowest to highest is as follows: collect, forage, forage careful, forage precise.
Foraging is also trained by Fishing.
As of July 15th, 2009, all experience timers have been removed from foraging, and experience gained has increased significantly. This means it is now possible for survival terts to lock the skill without fishing, and easier for everyone to lock it in general. The experience from fishing has not increased. Fishing, however, also teaches Animal Lore and can also teach Skinning.
The general rule in training any skill is that the amount of experience you gain per action is a function of how successful that action was. So when foraging you want to go after the most difficult item you can reliably find. A good place to start is the Foraging Compendium, which can be used by referencing your foraging and Perception skill and finding where on the chart you are likely to learn.
It is easier to forage during the daytime as opposed to night. It is also easier to forage in good weather. Heavy rain greatly penalizes your chances of finding something.
Things that help boost foraging skill: ranger's raccoon, Wolf Scent Spell, Sprout Spell, any perception boosting ability/spell, any intelligence or wisdom boosting ability/spell. The Tenebrous Sense spell reduces the night-time penalty to foraging.
"Personally I trained by repetitive foraging of sticks, then moving on to dirt when I could find it, then vines. Vines still teach pretty well at 170." - --Khazera 16:53, 23 March 2008 (CDT)