[Discussion] Let's fix the crafting system!

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by Yippers, Aug 6, 2011.

  1. Goatmon

    Goatmon Member

    For the most part, I enjoy the crafting system. I have one major concern regarding alchemy, and that is the lack of a grinder in your starting equipment. It seems odd that smithing and tinkering both include one, even though neither of them really has much (If any) need for it, whereas both health and mana potions (Which are major life savers) require rust and powdered aluminum, neither of which can be found very easily.

    When rolling characters on a wizard build, I frequently seem to find myself with a stockpile of rusty swords and aluminum pipes and other rusted junk, taking up more and more space because I go from level to level (Checking every inch as I go) and find an endless array of every crafting tool except for grinders. I've gotten as far as level 4-5 a series of times, without ever getting one.

    Most of my deaths in all this time have been due to getting overwhelmed and having no health potions available to save myself. As opposed to my rogue tinker/alchemist characters, who always have them by the dozen, since I start with the necessary tools to make them.

    Would it be asking too much to give alchemists a grinder with their starting equipment?
  2. J-Factor

    J-Factor Member

    That's coming in the next patch:
    <blockquote>Alchemists now start with an Ingot Grinder, giving them more rubbish than any other class.</blockquote>
  3. Goatmon

    Goatmon Member

    Thank you! <3
  4. Kaoy

    Kaoy Member

    I have noticed that, occasionally, the weapons and armour you craft are in fact of superiour quality to those found. They sometimes get boost a kin to having been put on the Anvil of Krong a a couples of times with favourable results. How about making that a standard thing? Upon crafting at level 1, you get one positive Krong buff. At level 2, you get 2 positive Krong buffs, and ect. This would make the items that you craft better than their common counter parts.

    As for the 'can only craft what you know' idea, I like it. However, on top of it, I would like to suggest adding a library room and the ability to get multiple recipes from one shelf. The library room would contain 5-6 shelves, appearing on each level with 33% chance. As for multiple recipes from the same shelf, each time you use one, you would get a recipe, with a 65% chance of getting a 2nd, then a 45% of a third, a 25% chance of a fourth, and a 10% of a fifth. I would also do away with the 'standard' recipe idea, but would be in favour of automatically learning maybe 5 recipes of your new level each time you level crafting. For food though, everyone knows how to make a grilled cheese and an omelette, so yeah, those can be 'standard'. Thou, the idea of a Cheese omelette recipe would be neat.
  5. SumDewd

    SumDewd Member

    <i>1. What is the current crafting system like? Is it broken? If anything, what do you like about how things currently are? </i>

    It's a bit tedious, but it works. Some of the more outstanding bugs are; stacking of crafted items, nerfing (like, *pouf* gone!) when crafting a different item in the same kit. (lost 9 iron bombs once doing that... GRRRR!) The behavior of a kit changes when using/not-using a recipe, such as the stacking bit. (use a recipe and the crafted items stack, otherwise no-stack, even when crafting multiple-yield items!)

    <i>2. How can the crafting skills--Alchemy, Smithing, Tinkering--be buffed to be as valuable as the other skills? Players have to give up a skill slot to pick them, so is that skill slot worth it? </i>

    It's already worth it, just for making use of the random "junk" in the game. I love the idea that found items can be wrangled into usable forms; it's a concept in the roguelike genre that's worth exploring further. I for one would like to see crafted items exceed bought/found/sidequest items on a geometric scale, similar to the way that tinkering does with crossbows. I would also like to see multiple branching of "root" items; like a ratchet crossbow that could be upgraded into *either* a stronger version ("reinforced") *or* into a double-firing ("two-slot") version.

    <i>3. Are the crafting skills unbalanced between each other (ex: smithing > tinkering)? If so, how can we fix that?</i>

    Alchemy is fine, but finding distillery/alchemy kits is almost useless to non-skilled players. If anything, increase the occurrence of an alchemist-buff item or take more recipes into zero-skill crafting. Heal/Mana potions are way to good to keep to just Alchemist players.

    <i>4. How effective should the crafting system be without crafting skills? What should having crafting skills add to that? </i>

    Where's the items, like Tinkerer's Goggles, that can buff a kit skill? It would be interesting to understand the full layout of such items; would it be possible to fully-buff a player's kit skills without paying into the skill at the start? *Should* that be possible at all? It would still be interesting to have additional items that could include kit-skill buffs, even if they're random Krong buffs. (not entirely random, mind you... keep it fair by not allowing a non-skilled player to get past skill-3 or skill-4, no matter what)

    <i>5. Does the crafting system scale well through the levels compared to the other systems like the shop, Inconsequentia quests, Anvils, etc? If not, how can it be fixed? </i>

    Smithing appears to be the slowest to scale, based on skill level. Tinkerers can quickly make deadly traps and lethally barb their bolts by level 3, where a Smith needs level 3 just to make a decent sword. Also, it seems that smithing is pretty limited by the number of items; that is an area where the loot/crafting can really start to expand, and may do so by lowering the general requirements. (more zero-skill crafts, too... an idiot can make a 'crude sword' by banging on metal, but he can't improve it.)

    <i>6. How should the bookshelves and recipes be handled? </i>

    Hrm... seems like two different questions to me.

    <b>Bookshelves: </b>
    Currently a random chance to see *any* recipe not already in the default sets. When a recipe is found (yes, it's a good chance) it's just as likely to be for a kit you *don't* have. Kits that aren't in the inventory should not have additional recipes appearing in them. It should be beyond the ken of the player without having the actual kit... would one know how to wire a circuit if one never knew how to prototype on a breadboard? Receiving a circuit diagram for a transistor radio should be gibberish unless one knows the basics, so why would one keep such knowledge? Taken to another level, finding a bookshelf may give a choice between kits-on-hand; if you have ingot+anvil+tinker, then you can choose from those for a single recipe, or maybe a chance of only two-out-of-three... another d(6) roll, anyone?

    Why do I see the recipes for all six kits when I only have one or a few? The recipe system needs a UI tweak to reflect what the player *should* and *should not* know. Players that only paid into smithing should not know any alchemy recipes, and vice-versa. Finding a kit in the dungeon should open up a few zero-skill recipes, but nothing more. I've already been through the feature-voting pages and seen some excellent suggestions for the recipe system. (filters and sorting are foremost, along with more intuitive "can/cannot make this" indications) I'm no stranger to the old RPG days... that's pencil-and-paper "old", not just Final Fantasy I, II or III. Maybe add a slim chance to succeed at higher-level crafts, with a modifier for having the recipe? It would be nice to have a shot at making a higher-level item without knowing I have to grind to the next level to achieve it. (speaking of... there's a new achievement idea for ya!)

    <i>7. How should ingredients be handled? </i>

    This was also touched upon at the feature-voting site. What I saw was a suggestion of having "bags" related to each kit that could hold related ingredients. I'll add what I mentioned there:<blockquote>A common-sense or “the kit holds what the kit makes” approach may do well; A distillery kit could show the alchemic fluids as icons with amounts next to them. Tinkering could show gears, piping, springs, cells and pressure plates. The grinder could contain the various powders. The ingot press would hold all the ingots. Smithing kit would hold… dunno… [edit: maybe the hefty sticks and forging needs, like coal and chalk]?</blockquote>The general idea is to make ingredients part of the kit, but limited to things that the kit itself will use. Some ingredients (like gemstones and crystals) may still be left as general inventory since they have multiple uses and could be considered more rare than other ingredients. The two general-use kits, distillery and grinder, are really due for expansion. (there must be more an Elven Grinder can do than make rust and aluminum powder)

    [aside]What if using the wrong item in the grinder could "gunk it up"?[/aside]

    <i>8. Anything else about crafting that we need to address? </i>

    Raw materials. Especially in smithing, some finished products should be allowed to re-convert into raw materials. This will probably necessitate the creation of intermediate (i.e. never "found", but crafting-only) items, such as "slag" or "scrap" iron/bronze/tin/steel/etc. This would not be balanced if done one-for-one, (one crude iron mace = one new iron ingot) but an intermediary item would allow for differing conversion rates. Plate armors could yield more scrap than weapons, and a certain number of identical scraps would yield a new ingot. This becomes more involved with things like alchemy and distillation, but also opens up the possibility of multiple-item yields. Distillation (boiling) of some solutions may yield a liquid product as well as a solid or powder. The Elvish Grinder may conveniently play a role in this. (e.g., a product of "brimstone chunks" would have to be ground up in order to make a usable brimstone ingredient)

    Some of these suggestions necessitate a new approach to UI elements; having one square for the product is not congruent with the idea that a craft can yield multiple item-types. Suggestion: Eliminate the square where the product would emerge and instead hang the crafted item(s) on the pointer, similar to picking up an item. Stack different items on the pointer, so when the first item is dropped/stashed, the next one appears on the pointer. (a'la EverQuest crafting)

    Looking forward to improvements! Until then, I will just have to enjoy continuously dying in this buggy fashion.
  6. 123stw

    123stw Member

    I honestly can't see what's wrong with having the end game gear early.

    It's like, okay it dominates floor 2-6 if you rush crafting (and actually pick up all those steel early enough). But so do maxing your weapon skill with dual wield, or any DOT (nightmare curse/golden ratio/thaumite) with 2 blood mage.

    It isn't anything special to dominate mid game. Floor 2-6 are easy for every decent build. If you take away this certainty from crafting, either by forcing recipes or making certain ingredients rare, then they will just be useless 4 skill 1 tree sink.
  7. Misery

    Misery Member


    It's mostly because it'd be an imbalance; it's specifically "end game" gear for a reason. If you can get it early on, something isnt right. Also, it'd mean that the skillset is way too powerful, if it can make four to six floors become pretty much trivial just by itself. And yes, I know there's other skillsets (Mathemagic, for one) that are OP right now, but those are balance issues and will be fixed, i'm sure.

    Especially in a game like this. The game should really be difficult at all levels... PARTICULARLY if I'm playing Going Rogue... if multiple floors are easy for me to breeze through, something isnt right (also, it being easy = it being boring, as far as I'm concerned).

    On topic, my big problem with the crafting is that there tends to just not be enough options with each one, and they're not as versatile between different build types as I'd like. Like, smithing: It's only really been useful to me early on to get a few decent weapons, if I'm having trouble procuring something better... but usually, I can either find an artifact that's better somewhere, or maybe I can find something more powerful at Brax's shop. While it can also be useful for getting some better armor, this too is overly situational. And it's also just not very good for a character that isnt a warrior.

    Alchemy is.... well, good and bad. My current character uses a bit of magic, but I dont need drinks (all that often) or the alchemy set, because I also took Fungal Arts, which constantly gives me those wonderful Night Caps to use instead, AND other mushrooms that buff my magic or defense or whatever.

    And Alchemy just doesnt *seem* to DO a whole lot else besides make alchohol. I know it's possible to make other sorts of potions with it, but.... many of those recipes seem hidden. To a first time user of that set that hasnt seen the Wiki, it really DOES seem like it JUST makes the alcoholic drinks. And while that's useful, it looks MUCH more useful to make the other sorts of potions.... but that's not readily apparant. I hadnt known it was good for that sorta thing until I read through a bunch of stuff on the wiki, and then it's like... "oooohhhhhh.... so it CAN make those, but I have to look here on the wiki page to see how to do it..." which is annoying. if the game were currently set up to where you needed to find the recipes in the bookshelves FIRST, before you could use them, I dont think I'd have a use for this skillset whatsoever.

    That being said, if you do have all of those recipes available, Alchemy *is* pretty good for crafting utility items, which seems nicer than Smithing's extremly-situational uses. But the alcohol items are only useful to mages.

    Tinkering I have not messed with yet, so I cannot really say anything about it right now.
  8. 123stw

    123stw Member

    Having end game items with no other ability is no better in dungeon 2-6 than having some mid game damage skill with no ability.

    Put in another way. Can you think of any decent build where dungeon 2-6 isn't easy? I can't. So it isn't a smith problem, it's a dungeon 2-6 problem.

    If I can't make ring of iron thorns or mana torus without recipe, I will never touch smith. Besides that Flail, and maybe the Staff of Crystals, all the craft armors/helm/shield/boot kinna sucks late game anyway. You can easily and consistently pick up something better. So it's not like you get a whole "end game" gear set.
  9. Kaoy

    Kaoy Member

    Why not just leave crafting as it is, add some more recipes(better swords some to mind, as that is the only weapon type seriously lacking), and then adjust the rate bookshelves are generated in such a way that by floor 10 you would likely have all the recipes(minus maybe a few), and remove the ability to craft recipes your character doesn't know. Sure, you would know what mats you need for what you want, but you can't actually craft it till you find it. That's simply the difference between the player and character. That adds a touch or randomness to it, but also makes it more accessible for newer players or for those who don't want to spoil the game for themselves.
  10. 123stw

    123stw Member

    I honestly can't see smith being that game breaking as is to require any nerf. You can do away with hidden recipe completely and just make everything available (which is exactly how it is now if you use wiki), and it will still be just an average tree.

    A whole skill tree and 4 level of catchup game is a huge cost that nobody seem to be mentioning. I ran melee with and without smith. I won't touch it unless I am stacking counter/block and needed the ring of iron thorn badly. Whatever damage you get from the weapon is not worth the cost or the hassle.
  11. derpyderp

    derpyderp Member

    I think some of you guys are trying to make this way overpowered - knowing all recipes, more material drops, creating more per single craft etc.

    1+5) The main problem is probably scaling... of everything basicaly. You should NOT find awesome items/materials/merchant stuff on the first floors. It should scale as you go deeper (better than it scales now anyways).

    6) Same goes with recipes. Recipes level 0-1 should probably all be known from start. Bookcases should give you a random recipe based on the floor they are in (eg. floor 2 - 55% chance of lvl2 recipe,35% lvl3, 10% lvl4 or whatever).

    I don't think you should be able to choose the recipes you get. It's a Roguelike game. Things SHOULD be random. I don't like the idea of striving for an exact weapon and skill build.

    2) I can't really tell yet, but crafting in any game should in my opinion be able to create the best items (better/equal to the best 'found' items). You can always make it rare as hell by making the ingredients/recipe rare.

    8) What I'd like to see is more recipes and a larger variety. You shouldn't always be saving up for just the thing you want and throwing everything else out. Ideally when you find a recipe OR an ingredient you should sometimes go like "wow that changes everything" or "Oh my god I just sold the other thing I needed".

    7) Some ingredients are used in way too few recipes. This is fixed by 8)
  12. Misery

    Misery Member


    Is there a point when 2-6 become difficult? I dont know. I'd hope that that'd happen on GR difficulty, but I havent messed with that much just yet.

    At the same time though... some builds, right now, are very definitely over-powered (until the patch, probably), so I tend not to count them. If I have to use one of those builds to beat the game, well, I dont feel that I've actually beaten anything. I've just played the game in "easy" mode, essentially, if I do that.

    I'm hoping that the difficulty of those floors is either higher by a great deal on GR, or simply goes up with the game patch.... but other than that, this game overall is pretty freeform in how you approach it; using alternate, funky builds can indeed make it more challenging and funky (and thus more rewarding).
  13. 123stw

    123stw Member

    Well 2-6 on GR is pretty easy if you do any of the following.

    Rush your primary weapon skill
    Rush either golem/necro/math to their DOT, preferably with a pet
    Rush Smith or Alchemy

    What I am trying to say is, rather you are going melee,mage, or hybrid, you will have something to rush to make level 2-6 easy, unless as you said you want to deliberately make things hard for yourself.
  14. Kaoy

    Kaoy Member

    The way I like to scale it is this: If GR6 is easy for you, you have a good build. If GR7 is easy, you have a great build. Easy GR8 means you have a great build and a lot of luck. Anything after that? Needs a bit nerfing.
  15. Misery

    Misery Member


    Yeah, it generally would never occur to me to do that. If rushing any of those skills can instantly make that section of the game easier, than my thoughts are: those skills need rebalancing.

    Mostly though I dont do it because I get really bored if a game is easy at all.

    One way or another, I'll be interested to see all of the changes and such that come with the 1.04 update, when that comes. Hopefully that WILL balance things out a bit better as well as fix the skills that simply do not work right.
  16. DavidB1111

    DavidB1111 Member

    @derpyderp "1+5) The main problem is probably scaling... of everything basicaly. You should NOT find awesome items/materials/merchant stuff on the first floors. It should scale as you go deeper (better than it scales now anyways)."
    Um, this goes against all Roguelikes. Finding random out of depth treasure is a staple of roguelikes.
    You cannot remove it.

    That said, it also goes against your later post about randomness being part of a roguelike.

    To others, I just don't see how Smithing could be considered over powered at the moment. I like it just fine, and I don't think it needs nerfing. I'm sorry, but just because something is good, doesn't magically mean it needs nerfing.

    I play on Elvish Easy, if Smithing really was OP, I would have beaten the game sixty times in a row by now. :)
  17. derpyderp

    derpyderp Member

    @DavidB1111 Well the thing is, some things are random while other things are pretty much pre-defined/scaled.

    When I wrote that, I had just played a game with a 9 star awesome weapon in a merchant shop on the 1st floor, which I had enough money for like at the very beginning of 2nd floor. That basicaly made smithing and, well, everything obsolete and useless. I was just one-hitting stuff up until 6th floor.
  18. DavidB1111

    DavidB1111 Member

    True, and I agree. Also, how did you get enough money for a 9 star weapon that fast? They're almost all over 20,000 gold. Did you find several bolts of mass destruction? :)
  19. derpyderp

    derpyderp Member

    @DavidB1111 yeah.. and not just these. All bolts sell for quite a lot. I know it was luck, but still, it messes up the game a bit. Sometimes I barely have 4000 by the end of second floor. That's a huge difference.
  20. DavidB1111

    DavidB1111 Member

    Well, it's hard to really balance luck. :) Some people have insane luck, some people have crappy luck.
    Personally, I'm more of the crappy kind.