This game is so focused on making crafting rewarding that it makes adventuring feel pointless.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Aetrion, Sep 7, 2019.

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  1. Aetrion

    Aetrion Avatar

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    When you break down what activities in the game are actually productive you realize that crafting basically produces all value in the game, while adventuring just consumes it for very little in return, and doesn't give you any reason to actually try and take on difficult challenges.

    Crafting produces the vast majority of all items in the game, in particular the equipment that adventurers need to be at full strength. The system ensures that adventurers have to keep buying gear no matter what, so crafters not only produce almost all worthwhile items in the game, they also have guaranteed demand for them as long as people exist who are trying to play out a fantasy of going on adventures. These items also aren't created from rare resources that need to be harvested from dangerous creatures or anything, simply harvesting large quantities of basic resources can create the best items. There is virtually no risk involved in procuring resources, but almost all truly powerful items in the game are created by this process.

    Adventuring on the other hand produces very little. It's the source of most gold in the game, which is used to upkeep buildings and buy some vendor bound resources, but it's not the only source of gold, and gold is only worth as much as the items you can buy with it. It also has a chance to yield artifacts, which are useful, but only constitute a small portion of the items in the game, and drop seemingly randomly. A few special resources like dragon meat require slaying powerful enemies, but food consumption is once again purely a system that puts a cost on adventurers. Adventuring doesn't follow a risk vs. reward model either, there is no content that has a serious chance that you will fail to complete it, and there is no loot that you can only obtain from that content except for a few trophies that are vanity items at best. The one thing that adventuring produces that crafting doesn't produce is adventure XP, but the exponential cost of advancement and the fact that half your character's stats tend to come from gear makes this a relatively short advancement track. When XP loss was still in place you could argue there was more reason to perpetually gain XP, but it created a high risk low reward situation where it also just wasn't worth actually doing anything difficult.

    What you end up with is basically a game where chopping wood, picking cotton and mining ore for hours eventually produces the most powerful items in the game, but fighting your way through the most difficult dungeon yields a vanity item at best, and no real reward. Taking on tougher challenges isn't part of your advancement as an adventurer, because the game doesn't reward you for completing difficult content, it only rewards crafting, and the best thing you can do as an adventurer is bring back the gold to buy items and trophies crafters might want to buy with your gold to decorate their castles.

    This is simply a broken system. As an adventurer you have a mountain to climb in the XP system for a short while, but the slope intentionally becomes too steep to go any further, and your only avenue for advancement at that point is procuring more powerful equipment. That equipment doesn't in any way come from taking on daunting opponents and raiding difficult dungeons, it comes from a completely different play style that has nothing to do with going on adventures except the occasional easy monster roaming around a resource node.

    Crafting should be an important part of the game, but there needs to be a reasonable reward scheme to adventuring as well that gives you goals to pursue. Maybe people could earn permanent perks for completing zones and killing bosses, maybe there could be rare materials needed for the best equipment that come from killing the most dangerous creatures, maybe crafted gear could get a portion of its stats from slotting runes or sigils that are bind on pickup and must be obtained from adventuring. Something should compel people to seek out challenges and tackle a broad range of content.

    At the end of the day it's almost expected in MMORPGs that there is some sort of "gear progression" where taking on the most difficult challenges in the game is what yields the best rewards. Some form of that is needed in Shroud. It's not that you need to buy items from crafters to be powerful that's making this whole game feel pointless as an adventurer, it's that there is nothing outstanding you can actually accomplish and get a real reward for. You could put a fantastically difficult dungeon in this game and it would still feel pointless if you get the best gear from just gathering materials in low level areas, and then slay the dragon and at best you get a small chance of a trophy for your wall.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2019
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  2. Steevodeevo

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    I think Artefacts have added a level of value for adventurers. You don't need crafting skills to combine them, but you do need to be a skilled Adventurer to acquire them, either at all or in sufficient numbers. I think Port admit work needs to be done in terms of rewards for higher level kills, I believe they have said so, and many of the new dungeons will add a lot of fun, if not other types of value (again rewards for kills needs work). There is also new content to come - the new land, larger zones, better quests and a new story which will all be better accessed by the better adventurer. If they ever get to RvR, Raid Groups or Castle defence then Adventurers will get a lot of value.
     
  3. Elrond

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    Devs focused on crafting for only last 2 releases . It was long overdue if you ask me ..... The current supply of gold ingame is probably a few billions ...that comes from adventuring not crafting ....so if you feel adventuring is undrewarding i can agree up to a point .... i draw the line at crafting is so easy ... people just harvest ores and make the best items ingame ..if you were a crafter you would understand the huge amount of time involved in gathering refining and crafting just 1 suit of bronze armor .....theres nothing easy about it ....crafters take enough risk at the crafting tables ...Also best items ingame come from components obtained through adventuring... xen bow ..warlock neck, arti rings with huge int or str ...spears , hammers with mossy , savage handles..list can go on....
     
  4. Aetrion

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    Artifacts really don't help though, because they aren't a meaningful reward for beating difficult content, they are just another freely tradable piece of durability bound equipment that is simply produced by a slightly different method of farming. Having an artifact doesn't mean you beat a difficult boss and were rewarded for it, it just means you were able to scrounge some gold together which can once again be done by just mucking round in low level areas.

    PvP also really isn't going to fix the issue, because there are huge numbers of people who want to go on dungeon crawls and adventures who have absolutely no interest in PvP.

    The reason the game feels so pointless and frustrating is simply this: I wanted to play a character who's a great healer and magician, but instead of having a way to master that craft by healing people and casting spells you just hit that XP wall where the surest way to power is to go pick cotton.

    And I understand that crafting is a big time commitment, and I don't have anything against people who enjoy it, but that's exactly what makes the game unpalatable to people who don't enjoy crafting once they realize that there is no way to actually have any piece of gear in the game that you earned for yourself outside of crafting it. Handing over a pile of gold just doesn't do it. There is no sense of accomplishment, or feeling that you've had an opportunity to show dedication to your own pursuits. The idea that what you enjoy doing actually gets you somewhere gets shot down real quick when the next ten points in your favorite skill have a nine digit XP cost.
     
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  5. Elrond

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    I understand ... so you dont want to craft gear because you dont like crafting , because you dont have xp and you dont want to go gathering to get xp ...you dont want to buy gear from other crafters , because its not a big enough accomplishment .... you want to find everything from mobs prefferably best ingame ...as a crafter i hope that never happens ...;)
     
  6. Snowdog

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    "This is simply a broken system. "
    agreed with most of the OP
     
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  7. Ostvel

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    Crafting having a deep and vital purpose, as opposed to most games where it serves little to none as a side hobby only, is one big thing that drew me to this game!
     
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  8. oplek

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    The focus on player crafting has ruined most of the game. At least, the way it was approached. It's a problem they're constantly trying to figure out how to correct,which is why we come home with armfuls of paintings and spoons.

    I'm increasingly convinced that there's specific combinations of game mechanics that work, and the rest don't.

    [single player] + [valuable loot drops] + [no item loss on death]+ [no player crafting] = :)
    [multi player] + [valuable loot drops] + [no item loss on death] + [no player crafting] = :)
    [multi player] + [valuable loot drops] + [item loss on death] + [no player crafting] = :| to :)
    [multi player] + [no valuable loot drops] + [item loss on death / full loot PVP] + [player crafting] = :| to :)
    [multi player] + [no valuable loot drops] + [no item loss on death] + [player crafting] = :(

    Eve Online has a high focus on player crafting, and like SOTA, the adventure side is more about resource and money gathering. It's just that the *point* of venturing is full-loot PVP oriented.

    Here in Shroud of the Avatar, they picked a combination of chemicals that just won't react, no matter how hard they try.
     
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  9. oplek

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    And of course, one of the inexplicable "fixes" is over-the-top heavy-handed RNG when crafting.
     
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  10. Elrond

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    And how many titans drop in eve as loot when adventuring or any other ships ? I got no problem with adding more components as loot ....but destroying the craft system to add finished products as loot and claiming its gonna fix the adventuring loot ...its ridiculous at best.

    Your problem is not with crafting .... we dont have to take away from crafting to make adventuring loot make sense ....
     
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  11. Aetrion

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    I have no problem with crafters being part of the ecosystem, but right now it's a one way street. There is really nothing for an adventurer to accomplish or earn for themselves in this game. If you want good gear you either have to craft it or buy it from someone who did. What if the stat contribution from crafting was smaller, but items contained slots for runestones that you have to earn in your adventures, and that are bound to your character? So, having a well crafted suit of armor is good, but it's even better if you have a rare rune stone from killing a specific high level enemy to slot into it. If you don't have good gear you can slot that rune into a pretty mundane item, and it's still decent that way, but not reaching its full potential without that mastercrafted piece. If something breaks you just pull out your runes and put them in the new item.

    You could very easily have a system that combines SOTA's crafting with a more rewarding loot system where you earn items that bind to you and are yours to keep. They just have to be slotted into a crafted piece that has its own stat contribution and durability. The overall stat contribution from crafting would be smaller, but that wouldn't stop people from buying good items.

    Eve isn't as one sided, because if you want to craft high end stuff in Eve you need materials that are only available out in 0.0 space, or can only be manufactured in player owned stations etc. Without some way of protecting your business someone will simply kill you and take your stuff in Eve. I don't think that's a good solution for SOTA, because the point of this is that over-emphasis on crafting is ruining the game for people who want to go on dungeon crawls, and I don't think that would be fixed by also ruining it for crafters by throwing them into open PvP. It does work for Eve though, though you need to have a specific set of sensibilities to really enjoy Eve.
     
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  12. oplek

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    You should probably read what I wrote again. Eve's formula, that I listed, earned a :| to :).

    The point isn't to "destroy" crafting, it's to competently pair it with other game mechanics what would compliment it, instead of sabotaging the rest of the game. Player crafting and player adventuring don't have to be mutually exclusive. Unfortunately for this game, the way it's set up, it is.
     
  13. oplek

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    I don't disagree. But that leads to the unalterable conclusion here. SOTA's approach cannot work, on a fundamental level. Period. They've been trying for 6 years.

    If good equipment drops, there's no drive for player crafting.

    If equipment is not removed from the game, in the same levels that they are added, the crafting chokes on itself.

    Portalarium, and its playerbase, have chosen the latter.
     
  14. Elrond

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    Im not a fan of account bound loot drops .

    Theres tons of gear dropping ingame ... rings, belts, hoods , necklaces , bows, tridents,boots, armors from quest rewards ... with the current stats boosted for them theyre best in slot... out of 12 slots eqquipable on a character you can aquire 8 of em as loot drops /quest rewards ..with most of them being best ingame ....
     
  15. Aetrion

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    I'm not a fan of planned obsolescence.

    That doesn't hold up for two reasons. For one, there are not 8 best in slot items available as drops for every single build, maybe there are characters that can take advantage of that many artifacts and quest rewards at the same time, but most characters can't. Secondly, artifact drops are way too random to be valid as meaningful loot for PvE. Sure it's nice to find an artifact, but without the ability to go after items that are specifically for your character it's not a loot hunt, it's just randomly coming across things that are decently valuable every so often, which is nice, but just not the same thing.
     
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  16. Spungwa

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    Disclaimer: I have not read the full thread replies, so sorry if this repeating what has been said in replies before.

    This the exact opposite to my experience of the game. Now if you are talking about gathering, I could agree to a degree, as gathering has zero gold sink and crafters buy it and make items often at a loss just level crafting.

    There are rare resources, T3 components, like Torc weapon components, it just they have currently not added too many of these to the game.
    There are also useless ones that are not as good as the T2 crafted ones, i call them T1.5, like the bandit blades.

    Best bow in the game => not crafted. It is Artefact combination.
    Best handle in the game => not crafted. Looted salvage item.
    Best Bow/Crossbow String in the game => not crafted. Looted salvage item.
    Best head slot items in the game => not crafted. Mostly Cabalist hood, that are drop only.
    Best neck and ring slot items in the game for most builds => not crafted. Generally Artefacts.
    That just off the top of my head.

    If acquisition of stuff was my only goal in this game, I would go nowhere near crafting. Getting the crafting XP is either a gold sink and a semi afk time at a table or you do it by gathering. If you get it by gathering few animals drop the level of loot of humanoids and take an age in comparison to loot. Therefore the cost of getting more crafting XP is to hugely limit your gold/item per time or stand for hours watching a bar go up and with each bar going up lose gold.


    Oh and the normal solution to this is the bind on pickup mechanic, which completely kills a sandbox player economy. As most useful stuff become un-tradable. So I hope this game does not go that way. The idea in a player run economy is everything is available for in game currency (gold). So there is always the option of just getting more gold and buy something if you want it, like the real world.


    Regards
    Spung
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2019
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  17. Elrond

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    I have a feeling were going to see lot of posts in the future from people who never took the time to develop their craft skills complaining about how they dont have or they cant do so others mustnt either . For the last few years crafting system was generally bad ...its only been one release since it finally got a boost and those who didnt invest a single minute to develop their crafting trees are starting to see the value in crafting and now are expecting hand outs or systems to diminish crafting . I guess it was to be expected .
     
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  18. Vladamir Begemot

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    I don't think that's his aim.

    +

    Is the heart of the argument, I believe.

    In other words, "I never get a drop that makes me feel like I've just increased my ability to be an awesome healer."

    Which is legitimate. Now one could slowly put together an epic Ankh of Wala though. But there's no place to go where you're going to get it over any other artifact, so you need to grind long enough that you page through the entire loot table 4x in order to do it, so more likely you are going to have to go trade for the others.

    Other games get around this by having specific gear drop at specific locations. That could be done more here in Shroud.

    But the missing part is still the GOOD crafted gear as loot drops. And those loot drops being sorted as good for a specific build, and showing up in specific areas or mobs.

    Until the NPCs will pay well for the good gear, that's not happening. And when it does, one should be able to go hack up high level mages to get that sweet mage gear, which the game knows how to sort to them.
     
  19. Spungwa

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    This is true, but generally not in sandbox MMOs. In "theme park" MMOs yes, but also in these games, each major update invalidates the gear from the release before and forces the player to grind the new better gear from that update. This also only works in games that have exponential power growth, rather than diminishing returns power growth. Its why in most of these type games you get no XP for killing something 10 (or whatever) level below your level. That is why we have have no level limits on gear, if you add level limits to gear you make power progression no longer diminishing. When I hit a certain level range I not only have the advantage of the power that additional level (or XP to invest in this game) but it also opens new more powerful gear that gives me a step increase in power over what I could do at the earlier level. Thus giving me a a double hit of power increase that would not mean that amount of additional power I get per level is less and less as I get to higher levels, but gets more and more as I get to higher levels.

    Regards

    Spung
     
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  20. Spungwa

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    This I agree with, it would be good if a player had more influence over which types of random drops they hit the lottery with. I think in the more recent past this has happened, eg the taming artefacts. But the early stuff was just lumped into a an ever growing list of random artefacts not allowing the player to have influence of what they got.

    Personally I would also like to see some of the lottery taken out, it was why I was very happy to see the totem implementation. It is easy to kill the right thing to get the right essence. It is quite easy to get a tier 1 totem (100 essence) but is difficult to get a high tier totem, but while that high tier totem is difficult you feel progress through the entire process, you see the number of totems/essences going up towards your known goal. With the lottery, you feel no closer to your goal 1000 kill later than it you did on kill 1 if you did not win the lottery in those 1000 kills.


    Regards
    Spung
     
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