Masterwork materials are special crafting components that come in the form of item drops and ore deposits.
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For example, you have a small chance to loot Fade-Touched Plush Fustian Velvet off high-level Red Templar enemies, or to get Fade-touched Silverite from Silverite ore deposits.
You can then use these materials to fill the Masterwork slot in a crafted weapon or armor piece for powerful bonuses.
There are 3 tiers of Masterwork materials – the higher tiers are found from higher lever areas / higher level monsters.
Note: some Masterwork materials can have different versions (Snofleur skin, for example, can either heal 1% maximum health on attack, or give you a chance to cast Horn of Valor).
Masterwork crafting materials are a great way to not only make your crafted gear a lot more powerful but also add cool effects to your attacks. And in some cases, they can even make or break your character’s build – as in the case of Reaver specialization warriors using the Guard on Hit masterwork.
But with so many choices, what are the BEST masterwork options?
Top 5 Best Dragon Age: Inquisition Masterwork Materials
Fade-Touched Silverite – On hit: gain 5 guard (Tier 3)
The Hidden Blades effect in action – copies of your character rapidly attack your target.
This is arguably the best and most fun Fade-touched masterwork for pure damage, allowing you to cast the Hidden Blades ability, dealing roughly 500% weapon damage in total whenever it procs. This effect is vastly superior to other spell-proc masterworks.
Best used by: Melee or ranged characters with high attack speed or abilities that cause multiple attacks (like the mage’s Energy Barrage).
Where to farm it: Drop from Red Templars anywhere in Hissing Wastes or Emprise Du Lion. I prefer to farm it from a group of Templars that spawn north-east of the Tower Camp in Emprise – you can save the game before fighting them, and then simply reload if the Fade-Touched Velvet didn’t drop.
Fade-Touched Bloodstone – +7.5% extra damage for every enemy within 8 meters (Tier 2)
Although this masterwork material is difficult to farm, it is very powerful for ranged characters. A 30% damage bonus is massive as long as you don’t get hit for 5 seconds.
Where to farm it: This has proven to be the most elusive Masterwork material. Not only are Varghests themselves rare, but they also don’t seem to be dropping the item at all (or at least not the tier 3 version). This masterwork has been fixed and renamed, and drops from Gurn, the rhinoceros-looking things in the Hissing Wastes.
Best used by: DPS-oriented Ranged characters (archers or mages) as they shouldn’t be getting hit that often.
Fade-Touched Snoufleur Skin – 10% Chance to grant 12 seconds of Horn of Valor (Tier 3)
This masterwork is a great addition for a mage character that is limited by mana pool rather than cooldown periods. I particularly like this masterwork on Necromancers, and builds that use a lot of lightning spells, since they have a high mana cost.
Where to farm it: Off Venatori in the Hissing Wastes.
Best used by: Mage builds that are very mana-intensive.
As a final note, putting two of the same Masterwork on one character does not make it stack. So if you put 2 Fade-Touched Silverites on your warrior’s gear, for example, you won’t get any added benefit – you will still only generate +5 guard on hit.
However, the same masterwork effect of a different tier DOES stack – for example, you can pair Fade-Touched Silverite (+5 guard on hit) and Fade-Touched Obsidian (+3 guard on hit) on the same character, for a total of +8 guard on hit.