Crafting: As A Main Profession?


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Goblinworks Founder

kyrt-ryder wrote:

Regarding crafting blueprint discussion.

I'm hoping that crafting won't 'quite' be so specific as to have individual 'blueprints' for various pieces of weaponry.....

LibraryRPGamer wrote:


One question I have is how will crafters learn the “blueprints” of their trade. In short, how will a bladesmith learn or find the designs to make a new weapon? Three suggestions-

1 - Have an auto-learn system where, once the skill reaches a certain threshold, the PC automatically knows how to craft X object. This option lacks individuality, effort, AND social interaction. Next.

2 – Have PCs barter and trade “blueprints” at some sort of PC-controlled market. In LOTRO, Players...

Learning specific blueprints is an interesting topic. Would a "discovery" mechanic work for metal working for uncommon weapons? Like some games allow a crafter to discover new potions when combining unusual ingredients. Put that Idea aside for later thought.

Blueprints for exotic weaponry not native to the River Kingdoms could be purchased from traveling merchants, discovered by experimentation, or found while adventuring.

Traveling merchants could be between social interaction between merchant players and craftsman players, or a traveling non-player character.

Experimentation could be from combining unusual metals into a standard blueprint. It could be merely a random number generated chance to learn a scimitar blueprint while crafting a basic sword. This could simulate a character experimenting with different techniques to discover new ones.

Adventuring could be from anything. A player finding a broken weapon in some long forgotten tomb, brings it back to the smith who repairs it and discovers that the weapon is unlike any he has seen before.

Edit: I would say that a craftsmen have access to a basic suite of blueprints already, but definitely have an option to learn new and interesting blueprints via the above means (and any other means along the lines we have discussed)


kyrt-ryder wrote:

Regarding crafting blueprint discussion.

I'm hoping that crafting won't 'quite' be so specific as to have individual 'blueprints' for various pieces of weaponry. Specific types of forging (Damascus steel and similar stuff) sure, various metallurgy (such as varying alloys and the like) I am in agreement with. But blueprints on a weapon by weapon basis just seems a little bit 'too' deep.

Besides, every 'masterwork' weapon is a unique creation of the smith. A smith might hammer out a bunch of generic swords by a blueprint (and thus get better at making them more quickly etc) but a masterworked weapon is a work of art.

In my opinion, forging methods should come with the craft skill development, and metallurgy (alloying the various ores available in game, choosing different materials to layer together, possibly even alchemically producing non-organic materials [perhaps with the use of a separate alchemy skill]) would be trial and error. Once you figure a formula out, feel free to horde it until such time as someone else figures it out and you lose your monopoly, OR sell it to others at your choice.

Nice. I really like the idea of having crafting focused on the alloys rather than the types of weapons which can be crafted from said alloys. It simplifies things a great deal. Also, it is more historical. The sword – or some variation thereof – has been around for nearly a thousand years. However, what makes one sword better than the other is the metal used – not the size or shape of the sword. I say “shape” because each shape has a specific purpose...and all are effective for the fighting style which they were meant to be used.

So, I am going to take a step back for a moment. How would you suggest that one "figure out" how to craft a specific alloy?

Liberty's Edge

I would be all for crafting if it took real world time (whether logged on or not). For example once you start making a sword it actually takes a week of real world time. You don't have to actively leave your character parked over this time - have to hand-wave the metagame reasons. Plus only one crafted item on the go at a time. This would mean there is a limit that a person can actually make in game and stop market flooding.

2 cents,
S.

Goblin Squad Member

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I think it would be interesting and promote community building if a crafter learned how to craft with a new alloy every time he or she gained the next rank of their crafting skill, but needed a community prosperous enough to support the level of workshop needed to make us of such knowledge.

Think of the old War Craft games, or most other Real Time Strategy Games for a moment. Having the knowledge does you little good without the resources or the structure you need. I would like to see communities that invest in upgrading the hamlet's/ village's / Town's / City's foundry / Metal Working Station or whatever allow higher level crafters to make use more exotic materials.

The quality of community faculties could start out basic and improve as the community leader gains ranks in the City Planning Skills, and the community as a whole contributes resources wood, stone, ore, and gold towards the goal of upgrading existing facilities and building new ones.

Goblinworks Founder

JMecha wrote:

I think it would be interesting and promote community building if a crafter learned how to craft with a new alloy every time he or she gained the next rank of their crafting skill, but needed a community prosperous enough to support the level of workshop needed to make us of such knowledge.

Think of the old War Craft games, or most other Real Time Strategy Games for a moment. Having the knowledge does you little good without the resources or the structure you need. I would like to see communities that invest in upgrading the hamlet's/ village's / Town's / City's foundry / Metal Working Station or whatever allow higher level crafters to make use more exotic materials.

The quality of community faculties could start out basic and improve as the community leader gains ranks in the City Planning Skills, and the community as a whole contributes resources wood, stone, ore, and gold towards the goal of upgrading existing facilities and building new ones.

This is what I am really hoping to see from this project.

Goblin Squad Member

I admit I know nothing of game design or MMO's, but I think the idea of community resources needed to craft and produce higher end gear would make for an interesting dynamic in game. The best crafters will seek out places where they can actually make used of their advanced crafting skills, and communities that want the best items and gear made available to them will need to not only attract the skilled crafters needed to but to also invest community resources towards the buildings and raw materials such crafters will need to actually craft.

In addition to being a mechanic that would motivate people to work together for the better of their community, the resources required to upkeep such master foundries and advanced crafting centers may also be a great motivator for two different communities to go to war with eachother, or band together sharing resources to better prepare themselves against a third or fourth nation on their boarders they they fear will come to call.

Goblin Squad Member

It will definitely be a core part of the economy.


JMecha wrote:

I admit I know nothing of game design or MMO's, but I think the idea of community resources needed to craft and produce higher end gear would make for an interesting dynamic in game. The best crafters will seek out places where they can actually make used of their advanced crafting skills, and communities that want the best items and gear made available to them will need to not only attract the skilled crafters needed to but to also invest community resources towards the buildings and raw materials such crafters will need to actually craft.

In addition to being a mechanic that would motivate people to work together for the better of their community, the resources required to upkeep such master foundries and advanced crafting centers may also be a great motivator for two different communities to go to war with eachother, or band together sharing resources to better prepare themselves against a third or fourth nation on their boarders they they fear will come to call.

It will also allow players to avoid the cities and all the online fuss if they wish. A PC could even spend some time in the city and more back to the rural landscape and build a forge there. This could be great RP to be some sort of sword-making guru or Griswold from the Diablo franchise? I cried the day I had to slay that guy in D2…but I was over it when he dropped the loot.


Elth wrote:
LibraryRPGamer wrote:


Point. But, would players really want to play store clerks? I guess that if I want to play a crafter then someone would want to manage a store in a virtual world, right?

Some players would.

I think you missed a bit though...

Example 1:
..... You then plant your wooden stall... and when you log off, your character will turn into an NPC that can repair armor and sell items.

Aion allowed players to establish themselves as a vendor. Most players would do it and then go afk for an hour or so. My idea is merely using that idea and pushing it that little bit further in that you can do so while you are logged off for the night.

It would allow someone to craft a few things for the shop before logging out. Then they can train/craft offline while being set up as a vendor to sell the stuff they made earlier that night.

You will definitely find some sandbox players will want to do nothing else but craft and sell their items.
You will also find some sandbox players that will want to do nothing but entertain.
You will aslo find some sandbox players that want to kill anything with a heartbeat.

Years back I tried to create something along those lines for purposes of submitting as requests for a game I played, then tried to dev my own MMO with no grasp of how to make these things happen.

This would be a dream come true, albeit with one slight change that came to mind.

Originally, my conceit had been inspired by the concept of reputation gains and a correlation to the Rested XP bonus that came of logging out in an Inn in WoW - why limit the concept to that?* Say you play a martial type character who wants to help keep the town from suffering massive grief-raids from the opposing faction, but can't be online at the times the offenders are normally about? Sign up for guard duty! During the time you are offline, one of the normal guards who hangs out and patrols specific areas will be replaced by your character, with their far superior gear and skill set. Mind, it won't have your responses available, and will perform like a guard with access to more player capabilities, but them's the breaks. You might get beat up, killed, or injured badly, but you would earn a bonus to reputation gains and, likely, a stipend to offset the cost of repairs and such.

Want to craft, but hate farming the materials? Apprentice to a crafting NPC, and you'll show up in the area, as a clickable vendor capable of turning basic raw materials into the objects desired, based on your knowledge! Alternately, keep the NPC as the person targeted, and have it so some of the work is farmed to the apprentices working at the time. The prioritization of work would be based as much on reputation as other modifiers (charisma, strength, etc.), especially if time is involved in the crafting for things beyond the basic deplete-able needs, and where items can be made faster with more people working on them, the more apprentices available the faster work can be accomplished. If commoners are treated as a finite resource to determine the speed by which work can be completed, having players contributing and/or replacing in their downtime can also help free up those commoners for OTHER projects.


Ryan Dancey wrote:
Goraxes wrote:
Is there any chance a feature like that may be used?

There will almost certainly be characters that primarily craft (and perhaps sell) items and consumables. The best items and consumables at the lowest cost will be produced by the characters who focus on developing the necessary skills and abilities to focus on crafting.

I'm a crafter first monster people slayer second. I really hope they make the best items in game crafted. This promotes community. Which in a MMO is one of the most important things. while i enjoyed SWG's crafting system i really enjoyed Wurm onlines the best. Infact the entire world in Wurm online was fantastic. Being able to craft my own how plot my own piece of land and digging my own mine was a blast.

I'm hoping for something along the lines of either of these 2 games for a crafting system.

Goblin Squad Member

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Agreed, cannot stress enough that PLAYERS making the Best (or comparable) items in the Game will prevent the burnout stress that causes so much nerdrage in MMOs like WoW and Rifts, where you spend weeks grinding materials for the damn Best In Slot, only to have it completely useless within two weeks when the next patch rolls in and the instances are handing out welfare epics.

I think we all understand that, no, you're +1 Longsword will have precious little use outside of the first few levels in the game, but at the same point being able to say ".....No. G%&~@%nit, no, this is my Grandfather's sword, I am keeping it!" and going on to enchant it further and further till it becomes a truly epic weapon you are proud to carry into battle not only because of its power, but because of its history too.

I. Would. Kill. to be a PC that can go out and slay monsters, but is just as good when he turns around and starts turning hunks of ore into ingots, then ingots into blades, then those blades into masterwork weaponry. Being able to take other players' orders (I want the dragon-wing hand-guard on this sword please! "Right, no worries!") and being able to craft their desired weapon and hand it back to them for a handful of platinum coins.

Imagine players being able to specialise their crafting? Choose to become a Blacksmith, and then you get the opportunity to make your weapons and armor, with the various skins etc etc ... but then you decide to focus on making Shields! Your focus means your shields grant real, useful numbers to the Shield, decreasing the weight, improving the AC or increasing it's bash damage. Suddenly, you have truly created a niche for yourself in the player-driven market! Heroes seeking the best defence they can find will flock to your stall, brining their crafting materials or bulging coin-purses to have their Shields crafted!

Or Potions and Poisons? Your character decides they have had enough of seeing sickly Heroes stagger into town under the effects of Mummy Rot or Dire Fiendish Spider Venom. Choosing to take your Alchemy skill into a specialisation, your Cure X potions are not only more effective but help with a noticeable benefit to saves to recover from ability score damage, and your anti-venom might not just help prevent the first poison attack from actually affecting the PC but might even counter-poison whatever bit them.

Goblin Squad Member

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And...imagine if mastering a craft were so difficult (I am not saying being proficient should be difficult) that there would be very few true masters. Players would travel from all over the land to request orders from these masters.


kyrt-ryder wrote:

Elth has some interesting ideas, but I would like to raise a counter-suggestion.

DON'T restrict novices to 'poor quality steel' and DON'T have a piece of equipment's quality/power based purely on the substance.

Instead, why not focus on having a scaling level of craftsmanship? A novice needs higher quality material to produce equivalent equipment (within their limits) where-as a more skillful craftsman can accomplish more with lesser quality materials.

For example a Novice Craftsman might need Medium Grade Iron to produce a 'standard weapon' while a more skilled Craftsman could use Low Grade Iron for the same results.

On the other end of the scale, a Novice Craftsman could produce a basic shield from a dragon scale, but the more skillful the craftsman, the more of it's benefits are drawn out. (More durability/defense, possible energy resistance, etc.)

This is a terrible idea, because it effectively prices new characters out of the market. If more skilled craftsman can make simple items more cheaply and efficiently then lower skills craftsmen, the craftsmen with more skill will be the ones setting the prices, meaning lower level character will likely have to craft at a loss.

A much better paradigm, in my mind, is one in which lower level craftsman produce resources/components that the higher level craftsmen can't really be bothered to make themselves. That is to say, a higher level craftsman can make more money per time making their more advanced items then they lose out on through paying the lower skilled craftsman's markup on the components.

Goblin Squad Member

GunnerX169 wrote:


A much better paradigm, in my mind, is one in which lower level craftsman produce resources/components that the higher level craftsmen can't really be bothered to make themselves. That is to say, a higher level craftsman can make more money per time making their more advanced items then they lose out on through paying the lower skilled craftsman's markup on the components.

This I agree with. Say the lower craftsman can refine ore into workable metal. It takes 2 hours to turn the very cheap ore into workable metal, The ore is bought for 25G and sells for 50g. The high level craftsman can take that metal and turn it into a nicer sword that takes 30 minutes to make and sells for 75G-100G, The higher level craftsman could very well gather the ore himself, and refine the metal himself for the direct 75G profit, but it is better for him to buy the metal from the lower level crafter, and make 3x as many swords in the same time-frame.

Goblin Squad Member

I hope harvesting materials is a Main Profession as well. It takes just as much (if not more) skill to cut and shape a stone as it does to place that stone. Likewise, mining and herbalism take as much knowledge to do efficiently (and correctly...such as knowing which plants are good, others not). I suspect many crafters will also be harvesters, but I would hope the best harvesters specialize in their art. This could be implemented by increasing the yield from any "node" based on skill. This would keep master harvesters very protective of their harvesting spots as they want to maximize their profits.

Goblin Squad Member

GunnerX169, another idea is that a more skilled craftsman is capable of making better items faster, for example a Master Craftsman can churn out a Masterwork Sword in the space of an 'hour', but a Novice Craftsman would require a day or two.

I fully get the whole 'being pushed out of the market' but the flip-side to that argument is then why bother leveling your crafting skill if you can make more money selling low-quality components to other crafters?

A variation on your theme that I think might work is that a Novice (starting/entry level) crafter can make basic and masterwork items, basic fairly quickly, masterwork takes a few hours/days, depending upon the complexity, but they cannot work in the rarer elements, Adamantite, Ironwood, Dragonhide etc.

As they 'skill up' from Novice to Expert to Adept to Master, they can take 'perks' to either make crafting faster OR make crafting cheaper OR make their crafting items somehow more appealing. Think of it more like the the Artisan Craftsman feat from the Dragon #358 magazine, page 38, the "Master's Forge". As each PC levels their Crafting skills, they are given the option to make work on a specific 'Craft' Cheaper (less materials required) Faster (less time required to craft, especially useful for long and drawn out jobs) or the ability to add 'perks' to an item.

For Example, let's use a Blacksmith again, who has taken the 'Novice Craftsman (Blacksmith)' Perk and chosen 'Folded Metal' perk, meaning that any metal or mostly-metal weapons he crafts will gain additional Hardness to help ensure they survive the rigours of adventuring for longer. At Expert-level, he's chosen the 'Cheaper' option and is now also able to work with Cold Iron and Silvered weapons. At Adept level, he's chosen 'Razor Sharp' perk and is able to work with Mithril and Adamantite. At Master level, he's chosen 'Cheaper' again and can now work with Dragon Bone and Hide. After all that work, our Blacksmith is probably a renown Master-Smith who is famous for the durability and keen edges of his edged weapons, and his ability to produce a larger volume of quality goods than his counterparts, although he is an artist of his craft and prefers to take his time, which can be troublesome.

Let's turn to an Enchanter now. Same again, Novice<Expert<Adept<Master.

Novice, chooses the 'Faster' Perk and can enchant bonuses up to +1 or 1000 gold pieces, whichever comes first. At Expert-level, the Enchanter decides to apply a perk that allows enchantments that increase mental scores Enhancements by +1 by increasing the crafting cost/xp drain by 25% instead of being limited to 2<4<6, so instead of a Incandescent Blue Ioun Stone granting a +2 to Wisdom, it grants a +3. At Adept level, the Enchanter decides to specialise further into mental abilities, and increases the mental scores Enhancements of items he crafts by a further +1. Finally, at Master level, the Enchanter chooses the 'cheaper' perk, and becomes infamous as the Magician who can turn even the most bumbling hedge-wizard into a formidable archmage with his magical items, and turns a tidy profit being able to do so quickly and cheaply. Unfortunately this also means he's put himself out of the market towards anyone but other Magical Player Characters, so his market-advantage is quite limited.


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Given the mention of a possibility of training skills while not online and active, I'd like to see such a thing tied to being signed off at the appropriate location - no going to the inn and reading books unless that's training for a mental skill. You want to train blacksmithing, you go do your reporting to the smith training NPC and you do that grunt-work. This also means that having players function as effective NPCs of their skill level when offline means that scripted events won't seem quite as stilted - the trainer might call out for a different apprentice to perform different tasks at any given time, so your friends might see what you do during 'off hours' and take screenshots for their amusement.

Similarly, you want to work your small-a alchemy? Go at it at the Alchemist shop, where your treatment by the NPC might vary with your skill level when you're not actively playing, ranging from lowly go-fer to promising pupil to near-peer.


I would really like to see CUSTOMIZATION of weapons,Armor,jewelery ect. Take A long sword- Pick the style of the blade(lets say about 5 styles),Pick the style of the hilt/cross guard(5-10 styles), end with pommel(5-10 styles).A weapon smith could take custom orders where the customer picks the blade, hilt, pommel.

Different styles of armor: Chelarian,Keleshite,Tian,Vaeisian,Elvish,Dwarven.
Add etching,tooling,embossing, mix and match a set of armor.

Liberty's Edge Goblin Squad Member

Sean Byram wrote:
I really hope (and this goes for most if not all game mechanics) the system for crafting is entirely based off of the tabletop system. I see no good reason to change it. One reason (not a good one, mind you) is to appease the "casual crowd". I feel like electronic gaming has suffered huge setbacks doing this. There are rules already in the Pathfinder RPG for crafting, and making money doing it. It's a good system, keep it.

Not at all likely, seeing as how the "casual crowd" is not the target audience for this game, per numerous posts by the people at GW, They want, and I agree with them, a small, hard-core group of gamers.

Additionally, the people at GW and Paizo can't port everything on PFRPG over to PfO because GW isn't party to the WotC OGL, so using Professions as a simple skill is something WotC could claim is their IP. The best solution for Paizo and GW is to make Craftsman a skill-tree that can be dedicated to, much like a combat skill-tree would be a "Fighter's Class" requirement to go one "class". This allows Crafting to stay in the game, allows players to choose to be dedicated crafters if they wish, but also allows some dabbling (though those players will never be as good as someone who has only gone full crafting due to a limited number of active skills slotted by the character), and will keep the economy 100% player run.

Goblin Squad Member

Holy crap, this thread is truly ancient. This pre-dates the first blog post! I got interested after the first or second blog post... I wonder how these people came to be here? Did Paizo just open the forum and people started talking about it? Is there much info out there from before the blog?

Goblin Squad Member

Kakafika wrote:
Is there much info out there from before the blog?

Oh, you have no idea. You're part of The Seventh Veil: begin research!

Goblin Squad Member

You know that Mesopotamean fragment of cunieform translated by graduate students at Columbia last year?

Yep: PFO Online was then using the code name 'seven bullocks'.

Goblin Squad Member

Jazzlvraz wrote:
You're part of The Seventh Veil: begin research!

Hah! I love that! Made my day!

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