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Update #58: Crafting with Tim Cain!

project eternity crafting tim cain

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#41
DCParry

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As an aside, how will you make the JRPG-y food crafting not be ridiculous? No ancient recipes that allow you to combine ham, salad and a slice of bread into a health-refilling sandwich plz

 

You have obviously never eaten one of my sandwiches. It not only heals broken bones, but makes you smarter as well. 

 

And, I mean, it's ham. What else do you need?


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#42
Sacred_Path

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You have obviously never eaten one of my sandwiches. It not only heals broken bones, but makes you smarter as well.


The problem I see pertains less to the fact that mundane food can have extraordinary effects (but this also), and more to the silliness of needing recipes to convert mundane ingredients into something extraordinary. Like, there are almond leaves everywhere, but I need a bloody recipe before I can brew a cup of tea, and the same again if I want to make use of peppermint.

Edited by Sacred_Path, 02 July 2013 - 10:15 PM.

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#43
DCParry

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Hoorah for crafting details!

I shall toss my plea at you: Please go nuts with the recipes. I realize that no matter how you do it, there's still technically an actual recipe for each and every individual crafting product, but I'd really like to see things that are somewhat dynamically affected by the specific crafting skills/skill-values you have at hand.

What I mean is, maybe the same basic recipe ("Iron Broadsword") can be produced with varying durabilities, and/or varying sharpnesses, etc., based on skill levels and the specific skills/materials used. Or, even some material variance. Maybe an ingredient within a recipe for, say a hilt, is simply "cord," and maybe there are various different types of cord throughout the game, that are all blatantly identified as the same ingredient type.

What I hate to see (because it's so overly done) is the entire crafting system being presented, in-game, as little more than a giant spreadsheet of recipes. It doesn't feel like you're really discovering or dynamically affecting anything at all at that point. It feels like you're making ramen noodles in the microwave. "Okay, iron noodles + water + seasoning packet + forge = BROADSWORD! 8D!"

Making 50 simple Iron Broadswords that all come out a bit different would be stupendous. That would provide room for subtle customizations and such. *shrug*

I just think that's something a LOT of crafting systems could use: a sense of your specific choices mattering, rather than adding pre-existing items to your shopping cart, then clicking the crafting equivalent of "check out."

Recipe flexibility. That's what I'm advocating. The EXACT physical properties of the item you're creating should be able to differ, even with all the same (or functionally the same) ingredients.

Blarg. I always end up with like 700 more words than intended. -___-

 

I see what you are saying, but in the end, all crafting in all games will boil down to a spread sheet. I think it is just a quality of the medium. While I completely agree that crafting can get quite boring and predicable, over complicating the process just makes it more likely that it might be ignored. In the 15 minutes or so I played Skyrim I hated the crafting system with the hate of a thousand suns (warning: previous sentence contains hyperbole). Of course, this is just one kobold's opinion. 



#44
Gorth

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I wonder how "modular" the crafting system is going to be in its design.

Let's say, I figure out how to make a nice shortsword for guy. I can't find any recipe for adding fire effects, but I found this nice note sheet. So, if I combine the two, would I get a "singing sword" which plays a little jingle instead of burning flames when scoring a critical hit?

Yeah, just thinking out loud. Sort of gives away that I'm an old Nethack fan ;)
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#45
necromate

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Ugh. Really not a fan of crafting in RPGs. The amount of junk it adds to vendors, the amount of busy work it takes to sort through whether this strip of leather is more useful than this piece of bark, the endless inventory bloat, the grinding for reagents, the grinding for drops, having to write a damn shopping list to tell whether you need this piece of litter or not.

 

 

I hate it when I have to fill my whole inventory with crafting materials and required items (á la WoW). In nwn2  it annoyed the hell out of me to check all those damn crafting books, never really used any crafting until Mask of the Betrayer... so lets just collect all those materials to a different kind of tab in your inventory, or let's have a lesser number of required mats... for example it's logical that the blacksmith/crafting station has leather strips and other essential materials... also you can craft anything else needed from the metal you found (hilt, blade etc) -> you only have to get the metal/skin/weave for an armor/blade/robe and make it... and because it's custom made by you, you could choose the basic cosmetics (the form of the pauldron etc, like you could do minor adjustments to items in NWN 1... would be cool)
I also think, like some who posted before, that crafting should not be an "alternative epic gear". Your main source of gear should still be exploration.


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#46
necromate

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I wonder how "modular" the crafting system is going to be in its design.

Let's say, I figure out how to make a nice shortsword for guy. I can't find any recipe for adding fire effects, but I found this nice note sheet. So, if I combine the two, would I get a "singing sword" which plays a little jingle instead of burning flames when scoring a critical hit?

Yeah, just thinking out loud. Sort of gives away that I'm an old Nethack fan ;)

Hahaha, the bigger they are, the harder they fall!

I'm a big fan of talking weapons (pls do create a weapon companion for us) xD I gues a singing sword would be cool :D  A sword bard, find new musical notes for it to sing a defferent buff :D



#47
TheUnoNameless

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I always struggles with the idea of crafting in single player games. What purpose does it serve? If I can craft better gear than what I find on adventures, treasures feel unrewarding. If I can craft generic items, very quickly crafting becomes obsolete. Same with durability - it pursues realism, but not only does it not actually 'feel' realistic (patched up broken armor should not be as good as brand new), it ends up a minor annoyance, distracting player from adventuring to run to the village to repair.

 

Baldur's Gate 2 actually had great "crafting" system precisely because it wasn't really a crafting system. Artifacts that you crafted were unique, extremely powerful, and required you to trek across the entire game to collect the components. Crafting one actually felt like an achievement in both story and gameplay.

 

I also noticed that two out of three crafting skills you listed are mainly producing consumables. I really hope you guys learn a lesson from Infinity engine games and elder scrolls games regarding consumables - unless you do them absolutely right, most players simply won't use them. I always ended up hoarding a trove of potions in BG, simply because most had questionable impact, took time to use and didn't make enough difference. This was ESPECIALLY the case for Skyrim - I think I ended up selling 90% of the potions I found. I couldn't see any visible effect of that +10% ranged weapon damage potion, so I'd rarely waste time on it.

 

Single Player game needs different approach to crafting than MMO. Instead of using crafting to create generic items, integrate it into story. Instead of providing marginal benefits (+20% Frost Resist, etc), make potions rare, but give them visible, tangible impact on an encounter. A potion that instantly melts one of the non-special enemies. A potion that makes a character immune to some form of damage.

 

Basically my point is, don't repeat the mistakes of other games with crafting, make it AWESOME!


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#48
Bhazor

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I hate it when I have to fill my whole inventory with crafting materials and required items (á la WoW). In nwn2  it annoyed the hell out of me to check all those damn crafting books, never really used any crafting until Mask of the Betrayer... so lets just collect all those materials to a different kind of tab in your inventory, or let's have a lesser number of required mats... for example it's logical that the blacksmith/crafting station has leather strips and other essential materials... also you can craft anything else needed from the metal you found (hilt, blade etc) -> you only have to get the metal/skin/weave for an armor/blade/robe and make it... and because it's custom made by you, you could choose the basic cosmetics (the form of the pauldron etc, like you could do minor adjustments to items in NWN 1... would be cool)
I also think, like some who posted before, that crafting should not be an "alternative epic gear". Your main source of gear should still be exploration.

 

 

 

Thats just mitigating the tedium/fiddly bits. That still doesn't make it any fun. I would actually love a hard core crafting sim. Something like the crafting in Dark Messiah of Might & Magic expanded into a full game with dozens of little nuances like the heat of the forge  and fully modelled molten metal. That would be awesome.

 

But pocketing any old junk you find then just walking up to an anvil and picking it from a list is... well it isn't awesome and why should I encourage things that are not awesome?


Edited by Bhazor, 02 July 2013 - 10:48 PM.


#49
Skie Nightfall

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Just please make crafting balanced and reasonable.



#50
Mico Selva

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Crafting system seems fine (I'm not a huge fan of this gameplay aspect overall). Item durability is a bit oversimplified for my taste, but I can live with that.

 

Oh, and the image is great. I'm guessing it is a modified movie poster, but I'm not sure what movie it is. Anyone knows this, maybe?


Edited by Mico Selva, 02 July 2013 - 10:59 PM.


#51
Semper

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[...]the silliness of needing recipes to convert mundane ingredients into something extraordinary. Like, there are almond leaves everywhere, but I need a bloody recipe before I can brew a cup of tea[...]

 

 

first we don't know if there will be such mundane recipes. second if you gain those recipes automatically after investing a few points into cooking skills it's like knowing them from the start.

 

crafting will stand and fall with balance. the recipes for items on par with legendary loot should be very sparse and difficult to obtain. the majority of crafted items should be weaker than legendary gear, but still viable and more useful than the basic stuff. to all the ones yelling for the bg2 crafting quests: they will be in! at least that's what was communicated while the project was kickstarted.


Edited by Semper, 02 July 2013 - 11:18 PM.


#52
Cultist

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Here we go

 

It's both for the economy and to make Crafting a skill that has value on more than one party member. Typically, crafting-related skills can/should only be taken on one party member because the rules don't reward taking it on more than one. If you do, those points are essentially wasted. A durability system allows us to use individual Crafting skills to scale individual degradation rates. And yes, repair does become an economy sink because "static" items have a consumable aspect to them. A lot of players have a preference for finding, rather than buying, rare/unique items in the world (e.g. many people responded negatively to unique items in IWD2's stores), which can result in a lot of money accumulation in the late game. The stronghold will be a good money sink, but a lot of people may choose to not do much with the stronghold, so there's no guarantee it will be a sink.


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#53
Shadenuat

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Will it be as fun as Arcanum, Tim?

Please make it as fun as in Arcanum.

 

I will send you a chocolate bar from Russia then with cool picture on it.


Edited by Shadenuat, 02 July 2013 - 11:14 PM.

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#54
Gizmo

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All sounds pretty straightforward, but none the worse for it. I just want to raise one point:

 

To begin crafting, you must find an appropriate crafting location.

 

I've always found it really bizarre and silly in games that you can just wander up to some blacksmith's forge, elbow him out the way, and start working. I'd really appreciate it if you actually had to gain the right to use these locations from their owners (options could be owning one yourself in player housing, paying to rent the use, included with board at inns, or being allowed access from a friend, for a few examples).

Or... another option could be that the crafter works better with better tools.  A crafter with full access to a magnificent workshop faring far better at their work than had they done it on some hamlet's back-yard anvil.  And/but the PC might be allowed to carry a small [8 pound?] anvil for in the field emergency crafting ~~But that would only make sense if items degraded beyond damaged (which I wish they would).

 

Here is an idea:  What if items that made it to 'damaged' (or severely damaged), became vulnerable to breakage in heated combat with a better blade or mace; your heroes' damaged longsword snaps parrying the ogre's war-mace... Possible (or I should say probable, mostly because it was in such bad condition).  A hero could stop [even mid-spelunking] and repair his equipment (with light-duty tools) to repair it enough to not likely break before they get back to town.

 

**Speaking of breakage and my wanting items to potentially break... Arx Fatalis had [IMO] a grand repair and crafting system, that allowed for casting ore into ingots, and ingots into swords; and/or working blanks into blades on the forges, to just simple repair work.  One thing though... In Arx Fatalis, the skill of the PC affected the quality of the repair; in many cases the PC could improve the item's condition, but incompetence would ultimately damage the item's maximum condition ~meaning that repeated repair work on the same item would render it [overworked] junk over time; unless they were master craftmen; [like the blacksmith was].

 

I like the idea that a PC's crafted magic weapon could run the risk of breaking if greatly neglected.  I do recall times in Baldur's Gate 2 when my PC might have a weapon break, and them have to switch out for anything at hand ~even if they were unfamiliar with it. Like a grandmaster swordsman suddenly without a blade, and scrounges a mace; or lesser quality sword until they can get a new sword. 

 

Another aspect was that in BG2, there were creatures that could not be harmed by swords (or even magic weapons)... this would cause a great sword fighter to have to resort to a conventional mace to put dent them. Now imagine they are in the thick of it an their only non-magical mace breaks. :o

Such a shift in tactics could never happen if the players were assured they would never lose any equipment.


Edited by Gizmo, 02 July 2013 - 11:20 PM.

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#55
Sacred_Path

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first we don't know if there will be such mundane recipes. second if you gane those recipes automatically after investing a few points into cooking skills it's like knowing them from the start.


Of course it's possible there's only one crafting skill and basically all "food" recipes are at the very low tiers... which would make sense.

#56
curryinahurry

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^ It might be, as Semper is implying, the opposite of recipes being a basic stock that is needed for camping purposes.  Generic food and drinks might be a given, and that the recipes yield special benefits; like an herbal soup that grants protection from poison for a day.


Edited by curryinahurry, 02 July 2013 - 11:29 PM.

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#57
Sensuki

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The Item Degradation/Crafting relation to durability mechanics are going to change the Crafting archetype from the Wizard to the Melee classes.

If the party is given more skill points than they *need* to have pretty good specialization in all skills (this may be impossible), then it's going to be a no brainer to dump any extra skill points into Crafting for any martial character to reduce the rate of equipment becoming damaged / cost to repair items.

I'm not against Item Durability, but if it's not designed properly it has the potential to be annoying.
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#58
Labadal

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I just hope that it is better implemented than it was in Arcanum.

#59
Sacred_Path

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^ It might be, as Semper is implying, the opposite of recipes being a basic stock that is needed for camping purposes.


it certainly is (not needed for camping purposes), JES has said that there will be no resting ressources.

#60
kenup

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Personally, I never cared about crafting. As long as crafting is not necessary though, I'm fine with it.

 

IMHO it would be better if alchemy was separated from "smithy" crafting, though.

 

But, guys, durability? Seriously? :alien:  This isn't a survival game(as far as we know at least). It's just going to be a tedious and boring time and money sink after a while/instantly.


Edited by kenup, 03 July 2013 - 12:09 AM.

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