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You're contradicting yourself. If you used the repair kits then clearly it did help, didn't it? Now consider the case where you only used repair kits rather than seeking individual replacement parts as you did in FNV. Wouldn't that be an easier mechanic? In a game like this where you are managing a party rather than an individual character, as a gamer you probably want that level of simplicity for maintenance tasks.

 

repair kits never helped anything in FNV. With abdurance of repair mateerials they were only used when you get some unique weapon like fatman. And it was always not worth it when it came to creatuing repair kits via crafting.

 

You're comparing apples and oranges. This is an entirely different game and my suggestion was for a universal implementation of item repair, not a one off.


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You're comparing apples and oranges. This is an entirely different game and my suggestion was for a universal implementation of item repair, not a one off.

I see the very idea of durability and equipment maintenance as inherently bad in Infinity-like RPG. No matter how cheap and abdurant "repair kit"-type items would be. In Fallout, they served as universal repair, if PE will feature, something like Hammer item from TES for universal item repair, then still it will be an additional way to annoy the player.

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And this has EVERYTHING to do with power progression.

 

How come BG1 didn't have that problem with stores? Becasue it didnt' have a vast gulf in pwoer between items, and starting items were still usefull. In other words, you dont' start with a pointy stickand work your way to the uber-super-extra sword of badastititude +200.

 

You start with a good, usefull weapon and MAYBE get a better one.

 

This. I am hoping overall power progression in the game is fairly flat, maybe not quite as flat as in BG1 (though I wouldn't mind), but also not as extreme as in BG2 to ToB.

 

In a system with fairly flat power progression, durability could maybe become enjoyable. Rather than struggling to attain more and more powerful items, we'd be struggling to maintain the few scraps we can manage to collect. That still doesn't get away from the fact that durability is simply "another click" to take care of in town, and if you accidentally forget it before entering a dungeon you might be screwed.


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Reading some of the replies off of this site and codex, I like the mechanic even more.  I hope that Obsidian keeps it at least at max difficulty setting. I believe Infinitron on codex brought this up, but the durability mechanic paired with a lack of healing options could create some interesting gameplay. 

 

Going into a dungeon or an extended journey becomes a battle of attrition where you potentially have to plan what weapons, spells, and consumables that you use.  Rather than rely on a single weapon throughout, one may have to rely on multiple weapons to conserve the most needed weapons for later.  The right weapon for the right job, which I believe most players do anyways regardless of a durability mechanic. 

 

If paired with limited healing options, another reason that I like durability is the potential effect on health conservation.  One can use their best weapon for every fight and as a result conserve more health at the cost of durability.  In contrast, one can use a weaker weapon to conserve durability on a stronger weapon at the cost of health.  I believe that this would be an interesting challenge on a higher difficulty and if this is a goal of the system then I like it. 

 

In fairness, I know that some people argue that they do not like having to return to town, especially in the middle of a dungeon.  I would argue, however, that is an issue of preparation and not the durability mechanic itself.  If one brings just a single weapon to a dungeon, then I do expect some discomfort.  That is, if the dungeon creeps do not drop additional weapons, which otherwise would help to offset the issue.

 

Overall, I do not think IE players are foreign to the concept of bringing mandatory equipment to a dungeon or a fight.  I think bringing an extra sword or picking up additional weapons to conserve durability adds to the gameplay. 

 

edit:  I think another possibility brought up is making town visits more significant to offset any annoyance with repairs. 

 

The issue is that players don't play that way. Yes, the usual hardcore player will set rules on himself to not go back to town to repair mid-dungeon, but most players will go back every 5-6 battles to repair and restore durability and come back: the very definition of degenerate gameplay. Players will undoubtedly bring several weapons with them and rarely use the most impressive weapon unless needed - and otherwise will use the weapons they find on enemies to fight future enemies.

 

It doesn't play as a tactical challenge as it is currently described; it is only a nuisance and a money sink and nothing more. It is dishonest to portray it otherwise b/c it hasn't been sold to the players as anything more than a money-sink and an opportunity to make crafting more relevant to multiple party members.

Edited by Hormalakh
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My blog is where I'm keeping a record of all of my suggestions and bug mentions.

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/  UPDATED 9/26/2014

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The issue is that players don't play that way. Yes, the usual hardcore player will set rules on himself to not go back to town to repair mid-dungeon, but most players will go back every 5-6 battles to repair and restore durability and come back: the very definition of degenerate gameplay. Players will undoubtedly bring several weapons with them and rarely use the most impressive weapon unless needed - and otherwise will use the weapons they find on enemies to fight future enemies.

 

It doesn't play as a tactical challenge as it is currently described; it is only a nuisance and a money sink and nothing more. It is dishonest to portray it otherwise b/c it hasn't been sold to the players as anything more than a money-sink and an opportunity to make crafting more relevant to multiple party members.

 

Thank you for the response.  While I understand your point, I respectfully disagree at this juncture.

 

I disagree for two reasons.  First, if players are walking around with multiple weapons, which in my opinion most do, then that mitigates repair spam.  For that reason, I simply do not see it as a huge issue at the moment.  Could it be once we have more information? Yes, certainly yes, but until then I think Obsidian should keep durability. 

 

Second, while repairs can potentially lead to degenerate gameplay, I think that there are many more factors that determine degenerate gameplay.  Specific to this issue and P:E, I do not think durability in itself is a degenerate mechanic.  What could make it degenerate is easy availability of gold, low cost of repair, ease of the fights, and quick travel.  Repair spamming is feasible if the convenience factors (gold, etc) around durability make it more feasible than tactics. 

 

In my opinion, what makes degenerate gameplay is if the means to skip the mechanic are easier than dealing with the mechanic itself.  Take for example System Shock 2, the number of credits, repair kits, and hypos were limited and at times involved risk, especially at higher difficulty levels.  I would argue that repair in System Shock 2 was not degenerate, because there was little to no way around it.  In contrast, in most IE games one can simply rest after each battle to recover spells.

 

Now, I understand System Shock 2 is in no way similar to how P:E will pan out, but I believe that there is more to gain by having a durability mechanic than without.  If it does not pan out, then an easy to install mod can easily fix that.            

 

Finally, while Obsidian did unveil this as a money sink, I do not think its applications are thus only tied to a money sink.  If durability is a mechanic Obsidian wants to add, it can apply it in a variety of ways beyond money. I think it is simply too soon to say that durability will just fail without giving it more time to develop. 

Edited by Nixl
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The issue is that players don't play that way. Yes, the usual hardcore player will set rules on himself to not go back to town to repair mid-dungeon, but most players will go back every 5-6 battles to repair and restore durability and come back: the very definition of degenerate gameplay. 

 

I agree that what you're describing is bad gameplay (and design). However, the problem isn't durability itself, but the fact that the player can just stroll through a dungeon as if it were a theme park ride and go back to civilization whenever he wants. If you can restock / repair at any time you want, repairing and restocking becomes busywork. And if you can carry 50 weapons, breaking one means nothing.

 

In my opinion, what makes degenerate gameplay is if the means to skip the mechanic are easier than dealing with the mechanic itself.

 

My thought too. The problem is not with the durability system, the problem is that other systems that would make durability make sense aren't there to support it.

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The issue is that players don't play that way. Yes, the usual hardcore player will set rules on himself to not go back to town to repair mid-dungeon, but most players will go back every 5-6 battles to repair and restore durability and come back: the very definition of degenerate gameplay. Players will undoubtedly bring several weapons with them and rarely use the most impressive weapon unless needed - and otherwise will use the weapons they find on enemies to fight future enemies

 

I can definately see this being a problem if a character has a super powerful item that degrades. If each character has 2-3 weapons or torso armour of relatively equal power it becomes less of a problem. Of course the problem could be reduced greatly if characters could purchase something to reduce decay. What about a follower who keeps equipment in good condition or something like that. A helper could even add to the role playing experience. I really don't like the idea of continuously having to go back to town.

Edited by forgottenlor

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I can definately see this being a problem if a character has a super powerful item that degrades. If each character has 2-3 weapons or torso armour of relatively equal power it becomes less of a problem. Of course the problem could be reduced greatly if characters could purchase something to reduce decay. What about a follower who keeps equipment in good condition or something like that. I really don't like the idea of continuously having to go back to town.

 

It certainly could be a problem, but I think most people already carry around two or more weapons or at least have access to two or more weapons.  That may be presumptuous, but even the most casual player that I have seen takes more than one weapon. ( I realized I just followed an assumption with an anecdote.)  Therefore, I do not think of it as a huge issue. 

 

I would also pose the question of what if players cannot continuously travel back to town or continuously repair?  Would it change the mechanic in your opinion?

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I would also pose the question of what if players cannot continuously travel back to town or continuously repair?  Would it change the mechanic in your opinion?

 

 

I think the question is: does the decaying mechanic fits PE?

 

And for now, I'd lean towards no. Decaying mechanics make sense, both gameplay-wise and thematically, in a "survival", gritty RPG. That doesn't seem to be PE. I'd welcome a few dungeons where you'd get that feeling of scarce resources and having to fight for survival, if it is not at the heart of the game, such a global design choice seems out of place.

 

Now if we were in a low magic setting, playing a down on her luck adventurer, trying to scrap a little money by risking her life at the border of civilization it would be fine. As you mention in that case the game could afford making "survival" mechanics a central part of gameplay. Here not so much, from what I have read. And thematically and story wise the same problem occur: how is it gonna look at the end of the game, when having looted an ancient treasure of inestimable worth you are gonna spend a fair amount of it sharpening your +15 sword of destruction? Because as far as I can see, if it is gonna work as a money sink until the end of the game, the cost of it will have to follow the curve of the protagonist's wealth. It will feel silly.

 

As of now this feels like it was tacked on the game, with little regard for consistency. I'd much prefer Obsidian found money sinks that brought something to the game, from a mechanical point of view and story wise.  As was mentioned multiple times, paying to get access to some quest, or to have some sort of effect in game is fine, and can be well done (think spending money to mount an expedition, or founding an orphanage in one of the cities, whatever…).

 

Outlandish prices for things coming from faraway regions are fine too. And so are low selling prices for the player. Those who would make the big bucks would be the merchants, not the adventurous individual. Think of the spice trade (or cocaine): the enormous money involved came from its remote origins and the number of times it changed hands. If PE has adventurers looking for hidden treasures in dangerous dungeons, then it should have an army of merchant with caravans, exclusive access to the customers, guild rules, assassin enforcers, etc, making the real money from that trade.

 

Some players will find ways to accumulate money nevertheless, always looking for the best price, spending little etc. But it will be their choice and probably because they enjoy it. No problem there.

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I believe that it does.  On a thematic note, perhaps it comes down to the expectations of the adventure.  I assumed that we would venture between civilization and more "savage" or forgotten areas of the land.  Hence, I imagine a survival element outside of the cities as if we are re-exploring certain areas of the continent.

 

I think where my argument became confusing is that I prefer durability for the survival aspect of it and not so much the money sink.  I know the developers have tied it to a money sink and I do agree with other players that it could be spent on many others things such as fortress upgrades, mercenaries, bribes, ships, etc.  Outside of a money sink, I think durability has a place in making game decisions more intriguing. 

Edited by Nixl
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For those of you who don't like having "excaliber" in stores, what about master teachers? For example the head of an order of monks could teach you master conditioning (something like getting a permanent +1 hit point) but only if you donate a massive amount of wealth to his monestary, because after all he doesn't just teach anyone. Or what about the King's armsmaster. Training with him could earn you like +1% "to hit" with melee weapons, but you'd have to pay big time for him to take time out from his busy schedule. These are small, permanent, in game bonuses that could cost lots of money.

I'd be ok with that, especially if you had to find the master teachers ... eg, they're not just hanging around in town picking their noses waiting for you have the cash to click on them. They don't have to be super hard to find, but some kind of effort required.

 

And yeah...I feel for the developers too. Can't please everyone all the time and all of that. :lol: I still hope that they will at least stick to whatever things they may strongly want for their game and not be tooooo influenced by all the armchair posting. I have tons of my own preferences, like anyone else, but frankly I want to have a game by Obsidian, not a game "by the masses," if that makes sense.

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Thank you for the response.  While I understand your point, I respectfully disagree at this juncture....

 

Hi. I want to be clear: I don't have a philosophical issue with item durability as a mechanic - I just believe that its current iteration is poor design for the reasons mentioned above. Yes, it's still too early to tell what the big picture looks like and not enough information has been provided, but with the information provided, I have serious reservations about the mechanic. I mention the things that I do because I want to shine some light on possible stumbling blocks in the future. I have seen many similar so-called "tacked on" mechanics in games past and I want to make sure that these mechanics are robust elements of gameplay.

 

I believe most people here want broadly similar things: however some of us take a cynical approach to mechanics while others take the optimistic "Obsidian can do no wrong" approach. This is where the philosophical juncture lies: some of us believe that Obsidian will always notice the flaws and fix them, while some of us have seen enough failed game design in our lifetimes to know that sometimes developers get stuck in the trees instead of looking at the forest. It happens when one is so intimately involved as developers are. Sometimes creative approaches are foregone because of the comfort of the past.

 

Otherwise I believe you and I are on the same page. I don't disagree with your post.

 

I would also pose the question of what if players cannot continuously travel back to town or continuously repair?  Would it change the mechanic in your opinion?

 

 

As it stands the mechanic is too insignificant to be much of a factor outside of higher-difficulty gameplay. There are no mitigating factors outside of crafting as a skill and no exacerbating factors either. It falls flat as a robust mechanic.

Edited by Hormalakh
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My blog is where I'm keeping a record of all of my suggestions and bug mentions.

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/  UPDATED 9/26/2014

My DXdiag:

http://hormalakh.blogspot.com/2014/08/beta-begins-v257.html

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I understand, I hope my post did not come off as "Obsidian can do no wrong," or putting words in your mouth.  Certainly not my intention.  It would be fair for me to admit that part of my post was discussing responses outside of your post. 

 

We are on the same page in that such a mechanic needs to be developed more if it is to remain and feasibly fit.  

Edited by Nixl

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The problem with durability as a money sink is it has to be stupidly expensive (as in "cheaper to buy a new one") or else its valueless as a money sink. In BG 2 I had around 150,000 gold with nothing to spend it on. That is the kind of money a late game party will need to "sink" and putting that into god damn sword polish is a tiny bit completely nuts.

 

If maintenance is included it should be for immersion and gameplay reasons not because your loot tables are ****ed. A better use of money would be quests where you could bribe or hire people to deal with it as the "good guy option" instead of the coward or evil method.

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A few points of clarification:

 

* "Crafting" is one skill, but the crafting system uses multiple skills.  I.e., the crafting system does not rely on the existence of the Crafting skill.

* Other than reaching the edge of a map to access the world map, there is no fast-travel in PE.  That said, we will likely avoid the IWD-style 5-level dungeons without semi-regular shortcuts back to the surface (N.B.: this does not mean Skyrim-style loops).

* Most items do take up space in personal inventories!  The party Stash is unlimited, but the Pack (made of personal inventories) is not.  Crafting items (and quest items) always go into (and come out of) the Stash.  We are doing this specifically to address common complaints about crafting items cluttering the inventory.  Since crafting is typically done at camps or other non-combat locations, allowing the items to come out of the Stash doesn't seem to create any problems.

 

As I posted on SA, Crafting (the skill) and its associated subsystems (like durability) were the elements I felt least confident about in our skill system.  I strongly believe that choices within an array should give the player reasonably balanced benefits.  Because certain fundamental skills (like Stealth) can clearly benefit from multiple party members taking them and can contribute to party effectiveness in combat, I believe that other skills should do the same in their own way -- enough to make all of them appealing choices on multiple party members.  This also has the benefit of making the uses of skills much higher-frequency than the individual uses that depend on designer content (e.g. unlocking doors or gaining a dialogue/quest option).

 

As an example, Medicine in its various Fallout forms contributes to the efficacy of stimpaks.  There are many other places were Medicine can be used in quests and dialogue, but it has high-frequency use with stimpaks (in or between combats).  It's a benefit that can apply to any character who has the skill, even if a character with a higher rating in a party may be "the guy" to perform the high-difficulty actions.

 

With all of the skills other than Crafting (specifically), those high-frequency benefits/uses were easy to come by.  Crafting presented some difficulties and, as I wrote previously, I was concerned about the lack of systemic drains in the economy.  Many people have mentioned a lot of potential uses for wealth.  Most of them are great ideas and ones that we plan to use, but the vast majority of them are not systemic, rather content-dependent or scripted instances (e.g. bribes).  However, it is clear from discussions here and elsewhere that the long-term balance of the economy is not a concern for most players who voiced their opinions -- and almost certainly not in the endgame.

 

Based on discussions on the forums and conversations I had with people on the team, we will be doing the following:

 

* Removing durability as a mechanic on items.

* Removing the Crafting skill (specifically).  The crafting system and its associated mechanics will remain, as-is.

 

Ultimately, solving skill imbalance and endgame wealth abundance problems is not worth what players perceive as uninteresting and unenjoyable gameplay.  I can still solve the skill imbalance problems by removing the problem skill.  As for endgame wealth abundance, we will continue to create places for you to use wealth in the economy: unique items, the stronghold, optional quest/dialogue gates, etc.  Ultimately, if those options go unused, I'll have to trust that the majority of players won't be significantly troubled by an excess of wealth in the late game.

 

Thanks for all of your feedback.

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The problem with durability as a money sink is it has to be stupidly expensive (as in "cheaper to buy a new one") or else its valueless as a money sink.

nop. The impact of repairs rises in parallel to player's power growth/ equipment. Repairing may well not be worth it in the beginning, but once you get more effective, non-replaceable gear, it'll take a toll on your surplus gold.

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Hello everybody

 

First I want to thank Tim Cain for this cool update.

 

Item durability ... hm ... It's a quite interesting idea! :)

 

Many of you have talked about BG2. I really loved the game but it was a shame, that many interesting items were only good enough to be sold as soon as a better item was available. I like this item property as it adds a tactical aspect to combat. It force the player to put the beloved and preferred "Mega-all-bad-guys-crushing-deamons-killing-speed-giving-fireblade" away and use the "Not-that-good-but-still-good-enough-for-this-fight-weapon". Durability force the player to consider having care of his equipement. In BG2 the player had two or three weapons in backpack just because they were usefull against some enemies/monsters. In PE the player will have more weapons for avoiding negative effects during a quest ... :)

 

In reference to the crafting skill I agree with many of you that say, self crafted items shouldn't be more interesting than looted (high level/epic) items. I think the player should be able to craft items just until certain level has been reached. Above this level self crafted and epic items can be upgraded only by specific (perhaps legendary) NPCs, as for the player is at first an "adventurer", not a blacksmith ... :).

 

Against the opinion of many of you I think the crafting skill has a great potencial, not only as it affects item durability. It can also be used to identify item properties. For example, the player find an old axe (Masterwork Mithril Fire Axe). Having skill level 1, he could find out, that the weapon has a weapon proficiency bonification as he identifies the material the axe is made of. By skill level 2 he also could dicover the the damage bonification (fire) ... and so forth ...

 

In combination with other skills (i. e. lore) the player could identify special items as well including other "hidden" properties. Taking again the axe in the previous example, the player discovers that the looted weapon is a very special item: Dremagor's Cursed Fire Axe of Pain (it has also negative bonifications ... };D)

 

This "identifying" skill should work only until a certain level, like the crafting sklill. Unique high level/ epic should be fully identified at places like shops or temples.

 

Crafting can also be used for getting Quests to resolve (finding special upgrade components like in BG2). It also can make the player get angry for not buying some items at "low level/start locations. For example. at start the player find Mar's Blade (no bonifications) in a shop. Thirty Quests later the player meets Thoren, the smith, who talks about a special weapon he could forge with the right components. If the player buyed Mary's Blade, he will get the quest "Retrieve components". If not he will have to return to the store at te first location to find out that the weapon isn't there anymore (= quest "Retrieve Mary's Blade")

 

As I said, the crafting skill has very big potential ... :)

 

Regards

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A few points of clarification:

 

* "Crafting" is one skill, but the crafting system uses multiple skills.  I.e., the crafting system does not rely on the existence of the Crafting skill.

* Other than reaching the edge of a map to access the world map, there is no fast-travel in PE.  That said, we will likely avoid the IWD-style 5-level dungeons without semi-regular shortcuts back to the surface (N.B.: this does not mean Skyrim-style loops).

* Most items do take up space in personal inventories!  The party Stash is unlimited, but the Pack (made of personal inventories) is not.  Crafting items (and quest items) always go into (and come out of) the Stash.  We are doing this specifically to address common complaints about crafting items cluttering the inventory.  Since crafting is typically done at camps or other non-combat locations, allowing the items to come out of the Stash doesn't seem to create any problems.

 

As I posted on SA, Crafting (the skill) and its associated subsystems (like durability) were the elements I felt least confident about in our skill system.  I strongly believe that choices within an array should give the player reasonably balanced benefits.  Because certain fundamental skills (like Stealth) can clearly benefit from multiple party members taking them and can contribute to party effectiveness in combat, I believe that other skills should do the same in their own way -- enough to make all of them appealing choices on multiple party members.  This also has the benefit of making the uses of skills much higher-frequency than the individual uses that depend on designer content (e.g. unlocking doors or gaining a dialogue/quest option).

 

As an example, Medicine in its various Fallout forms contributes to the efficacy of stimpaks.  There are many other places were Medicine can be used in quests and dialogue, but it has high-frequency use with stimpaks (in or between combats).  It's a benefit that can apply to any character who has the skill, even if a character with a higher rating in a party may be "the guy" to perform the high-difficulty actions.

 

With all of the skills other than Crafting (specifically), those high-frequency benefits/uses were easy to come by.  Crafting presented some difficulties and, as I wrote previously, I was concerned about the lack of systemic drains in the economy.  Many people have mentioned a lot of potential uses for wealth.  Most of them are great ideas and ones that we plan to use, but the vast majority of them are not systemic, rather content-dependent or scripted instances (e.g. bribes).  However, it is clear from discussions here and elsewhere that the long-term balance of the economy is not a concern for most players who voiced their opinions -- and almost certainly not in the endgame.

 

Based on discussions on the forums and conversations I had with people on the team, we will be doing the following:

 

* Removing durability as a mechanic on items.

* Removing the Crafting skill (specifically).  The crafting system and its associated mechanics will remain, as-is.

 

Ultimately, solving skill imbalance and endgame wealth abundance problems is not worth what players perceive as uninteresting and unenjoyable gameplay.  I can still solve the skill imbalance problems by removing the problem skill.  As for endgame wealth abundance, we will continue to create places for you to use wealth in the economy: unique items, the stronghold, optional quest/dialogue gates, etc.  Ultimately, if those options go unused, I'll have to trust that the majority of players won't be significantly troubled by an excess of wealth in the late game.

 

Thanks for all of your feedback.

Whether anyone agrees or disagrees with the changes, you guys are a class act and a great example of how to take constructive criticism and apply it. 

Edited by decado
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* Removing durability as a mechanic on items.

* Removing the Crafting skill (specifically).

Goddamn Codex tards.

 

I see just as many Codex posters happy to have a durability mechanic as those that thought it sucked.

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* Removing durability as a mechanic on items.

* Removing the Crafting skill (specifically).

Goddamn Codex tards.

 

I see just as many Codex posters happy to have a durability mechanic as those that thought it sucked.

 

 

Indeed. Ahem ahem.

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I'm fine with these changes, and I'm really happy that while sometimes the solutions aren't perfect, talking about mechanics with the fanbase actually gets results in the end. I'm sure there were fans of the concept of a good durability system, but at the same time it was always clear that the way it was going to work in the game would be somewhat frustrating simply because there's an entire party to upkeep. Keeping the crafting system and enhancing benefits using other skills (like skills relevant to crafting specific item types) is probably the best way to go.

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I don't care about Item Durability, if they announced Diablo 2 durability I wouldn't have bat an eyelid. I just thought it was very strange to lump it in with Crafting.

 

Still, a good update with a good outcome.

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