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Old 10-23-2008, 12:47 PM   #1
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Crafting

OK, so I figure this is a rather big issue for some people, I thought I'd get the ball rolling. What are your thoughts on crafting? What do you think the main purpose of it should be in TOR? How do you think it could best be implemented in order to maximize usefulness and enjoyability to crafters and their clients?

Personally, I think that there should be two main purposes of a crafting system. The first is to provide a system by which to naturally balance the game's economy. This minimizes the developer's need to keep inflation in check by artificial means. It seems that the best way to do this is to make most of the loot acquired by players raw crafting materials. This would likely be accomplished by making crafted items preferable to loot items, and then implementing a salvaging system. Players would have the option of keeping and using a piece of equipment looted off of the dead(assuming it wasn't broken in the fight), but the optimal choice would be to salvage the useful bits and then use the profits to buy custom crafted equipment.

The second purpose of a crafting system would be to provide players with a way to customize their character. This means either a parameter based crafting system(as opposed to a recipe based one) or modifiable equipment(thus creating a secondary market). In addition, the ability to "dye" equipment is paramount in a role playing environment(not that you have to be a RPer to appreciate this feature). And not just the whole item, but sections(especially when it comes to armor) of it.

One thing that SWG definitely got right was the inclusion of non-combat related crafting. Some people would like to alter their appearance after character creation and customized housing(if there is player housing) would be great as well.

I could probably think of some more stuff, but I just got off a 13 hour work day with 1 1/2 hours of sleep, so I'm done for now.
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Old 10-23-2008, 01:01 PM   #2
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Interesting.

NGE killed off crafting in Galaxies and since the arrival of WoW, nothing has come close to the original crafting in Galaxies. From my experiences in playing Galaxies - especially pre-cu, it's clear that there are people out there who enjoy crafting and making things.

I hope that SWTOR caters to this as not everyone wants to be forced down the combat route. Star Wars is all about the heroes, the war and those struggling just to make ends meet. Galaxies brought this home.
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Old 10-23-2008, 04:18 PM   #3
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Interesting.

NGE killed off crafting in Galaxies and since the arrival of WoW, nothing has come close to the original crafting in Galaxies. From my experiences in playing Galaxies - especially pre-cu, it's clear that there are people out there who enjoy crafting and making things.

I hope that SWTOR caters to this as not everyone wants to be forced down the combat route. Star Wars is all about the heroes, the war and those struggling just to make ends meet. Galaxies brought this home.
Totally agree. I relied heavily on my artisan friends, especially a person who became a very good friend of my through SWG - I relied on her and her crafting guild heavily for my armor and weapons. She also would make me some very stylish clothing. I paid them hansomly for their work, they loved crafting but most left during the CU, and they all left once the NGE hit.

I'd like to see a return to that in TOR.


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Old 10-23-2008, 01:35 PM   #4
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This idea was one of the things that made the early versions of Galaxies very attractive to me (though I didn't get it), the vast customisation options and not focusing simply on combat. The Old Republic would, in my opinion, be all the better for the inclusion of the things mentioned in the original post.


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Old 10-23-2008, 02:20 PM   #5
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What form crafting will take will really depend on whether they go for a player-driven economy like Pre-CU or a loot based system. I certainly hope for the former. While I dabbled briefly in crafting with a Droid Engineer, it was never my thing. However, I think non-combat professions open the game up to a whole other section of the market and that benefits everyone.
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Old 10-23-2008, 04:27 PM   #6
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This quote from Daniel Erickson (Lead Writer for BioWare Austin) doesn't bode well:

"At no point will your Sith be sitting down with thread and needles wondering how he's going to make a pair of shoes.

There are a huge number of incredibly non-heroic things that are traditionally in MMOs simply because there was no contextualization to deny them.
"

I assume crafting in general would be considered "non heroic".
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Old 10-23-2008, 11:56 PM   #7
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Yeah, that doesn't sound good. Not everyone wants to be a hero. There are certainly people that judge a game primarily by its crafting system, and while I am not one of them I see no reason to exclude them from the game.

I don't see much depth in their definition of "meaningful choice" if the only real choice is to do "heroic things."

On the other hand, maybe that was just a clumsy way of saying that heroic classes wouldn't be crafting. Separate crafting classes wouldn't be too bad.
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Old 10-24-2008, 12:15 AM   #8
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I'd like enough crafting to maximize customization without it being required for advancement--i.e. it can drop as loot, you can buy it, or you can make it if you want, but I'd hate to have to craft something to get to another level. That being said, I'd also like options besides pure combat in order to earn XP. One of the things I liked about Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines was you got xp for the encounter, not the kill--if you could sneak your way through, bluff or schmooze your way through successfully, it was worth just as much (sometimes more) than if you just killed your way through.

People seem to really like some level of crafting in LOTRO--Bob Lion has a great house and it looked like he had a good time putting it together and customizing it for himself, and that can add fun to the game just as much as taking out 10,000 sith fighters. Guild Wars doesn't have very much in the way of weapon or armor customization to near the degree that LotRO has, and from what I see on the GW boards, a lot of people would like to see more customization in GW2.


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Old 10-24-2008, 12:24 AM   #9
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The whole non-heroic thing sounds disturbingly like the justification behind the NGE to me.
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Old 10-24-2008, 01:27 AM   #10
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Quote:
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The whole non-heroic thing sounds disturbingly like the justification behind the NGE to me.
You mean the "It's not Star Warsy and Iconic" idea?

Personally I enjoy my killin time. But there are times when I really don't feel like killin. Those were the times I would craft while talking with the guild. BSing with friends. Managing guild issues(we reached the guild cap and were talking about creating a second guild for the alts), and creating items for guildies.

I would think it should be an optional set of skills that you can choose to take at the expense of combat skills. This way people can be more crafting geared than combat, but still not completely worthless in a fight hehe...

Of course the real key to this is to make it at least as fun as SWG's crafting. Whether it's part of the combat prof's ability or not, the key is to make it fun, engaging and useful.

I liked how SWG handled it in that the best gear was crafted, and you could get reasonable gear from loot.
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Old 10-24-2008, 02:17 AM   #11
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You mean the "It's not Star Warsy and Iconic" idea?
Yeah there's that, plus there's also this quote from Smedley -

"There's a quote about the original design of Galaxies that says it was too much like living the life of Uncle Owen and not enough like the life of Luke or Han Solo. We want to deliver more of the heroic Star Wars experience."

I never understood that. If everyone is "heroic" then nobody is. A community full of super heroes just doesn't work - somebody needs to do the more mundane things (as opposed to just running around "heroically" killing stuff). And, as SWG showed, there are a surprising amount of people that enjoy such roles.
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Old 10-24-2008, 12:59 AM   #12
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I'd hate to have to craft something to get to another level.
You could always buy what others craft. That would be the point of a crafting driven economy.
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Old 10-24-2008, 03:24 AM   #13
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Gotta check out all of the articles guys!

http://www.tentonhammer.com/node/47133

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Are you going to be including anything in the game that isn't combat oriented? Maybe some classes like a smuggler, admiral or diplomat?

James: The core classes are definitely going to be oriented around heroic combat encounters. We are going to have crafting, which we think is a major part of MMOs. We're really hoping to implement that into the game in a way that feels right for Star Wars. For the longest time we were really struggling with crafting because it doesn't really feel right in Star Wars, but one of the designers came up with a great idea of how to incorporate crafting into the game without making the hero feel like he's doing something non-heroic.
The quote from above about shoes was taken out of context, from an answer Daniel gave when asked if they were going to make Jedi's go out and kill nine rats (ie WoW quest system).
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Old 10-24-2008, 03:30 AM   #14
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Gotta check out all of the articles guys!

http://www.tentonhammer.com/node/47133
Thanks for the link!

Glad to know that we're getting a pretty consistent stream of information at least.

So, what do we think this heroic craft system will be?
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Old 10-24-2008, 04:18 AM   #15
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The quote from above about shoes was taken out of context, from an answer Daniel gave when asked if they were going to make Jedi's go out and kill nine rats (ie WoW quest system).
It's not taken out of context at all. The quote you provided says exactly the same thing - they see crafting as "non-heroic" and that it doesn't fit their vision of what Star Wars should be. All your quote tells me is that they are going to throw in some token crafting mechanism that will be as bland and pointless as every other MMO. It clearly says to me that there will be no crafting/non-combat classes.
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Old 10-24-2008, 04:29 AM   #16
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I have to admit though, it scares the heck out of me that you can replace

"For the longest time we were really struggling with crafting because it doesn't really feel right in Star Wars,"
with
"For the longest time we were really struggling with crafting because it doesn't really feel Star Warsy and Iconic"

I'm remaining hopeful though. I just hope it's exciting and fun to craft. Or at least to do something non-combat that is at least as enjoyable as crafting is in SWG.
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Old 10-24-2008, 05:47 AM   #17
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Well I didn't replace anything, but even if I did I'm not sure why it would "scare the heck" out of you. The "Star Warsy and Iconic" thing was originally brought up by you - the quote I referred to was Smedley's line about the "heroic Star Wars experience" which is exactly the same thing Bioware has repeated. It seems pretty clear to me that crafting doesn't fit in with their "heroic" vision and that it isn't going to be a major element of the game. I can't see how you could derive any other interpretation.
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Old 10-24-2008, 06:17 AM   #18
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Well I didn't replace anything, but even if I did I'm not sure why it would "scare the heck" out of you. The "Star Warsy and Iconic" thing was originally brought up by you - the quote I referred to was Smedley's line about the "heroic Star Wars experience" which is exactly the same thing Bioware has repeated. It seems pretty clear to me that crafting doesn't fit in with their "heroic" vision and that it isn't going to be a major element of the game. I can't see how you could derive any other interpretation.
Nah I'm merely pointing out that "feel right in star wars" could be directly replaced with "feel Star Warsy and Iconic." I'm not saying you did. Just pointing to the similarity of the two phrases. "Star warsy and iconic" has become so dreaded by the people that played SWG that it tends to scare us a bit. It was the justification for getting rid of some things that people really enjoyed.

Of course I have to get over that though. Bioware is not SOE. I have hopes that they are not going to head down that path. Of course while they may not have everything we want when they launch. At least they know better than to make a massive sweeping change.
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Old 10-24-2008, 06:29 AM   #19
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I'm not saying you did.
Ah OK. I thought you were attributing it to something I said which kind of threw me.

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Bioware is not SOE. I have hopes that they are not going to head down that path.
Bioware isn't SOE, but LA is still LA. It worries me that they seem to be taking a very active (and public) role in TOR. I'm starting to think we are going to end up with NGE2. If that's what they make from the start then so be it, but I really don't think we need another WOW clone.
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Old 10-24-2008, 07:22 AM   #20
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hmm, I kinda believe the main thing their aiming for is a SPRPG experience in the MMO world.
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Old 10-24-2008, 01:01 PM   #21
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Crafting is a dead end, imho, there are much better ways to enhance the player experience and Biowar can be trusted i think to come up with some much better ways to spend our time. But it will remain to be seen how it all comes out. The story and the personalization of the experience will depend on their imagination and I have a feeling they are developing some much better ways for us to engage with the journey.


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Old 10-24-2008, 02:06 PM   #22
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Just out of curiosity what are some of these "much better ways" that are so good that they must replace rather than stand along side of crafting? I hardly see crafting(when well implemented) as a dead end. Besides, I haven't seen any method other than total player crafting based economies work to keep inflation in check. That seems like enough incentive to put it in to me.
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