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Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Tradeskill Saga: The New Beginning

Yes, I've picked up the sewing needle of glory once again and decided to give tradeskilling another try. I started from level one in my quest to defeat the loom. Here are some things I noticed:

Harvesting is a lot less unpleasant then it was when the game was first released. Your skill goes up more quickly. Also, harvesting on Nagafen is much more interesting then on a PvE server.

At first I didn't like the way the Freeport tradeskill area was set up but now I find it much more fun then the Qeynos one if you have safe-fall.

The tradeskill quest is great. It just makes things more interesting and it lets you try out the different subclasses. I did have the following issue:

The first thing the quest asked for was White Tea. The only thing was, I had no recipe for White Tea and no idea of how to get one. I had to ask in Guild Chat like a noob and was informed that White Tea was (I think) a level 3 recipe. So I had to level up to 3 before I could get it. Very confusing. This has already been addressed
on the forums (and Blackguard responded) but since it happened to me personally before I read that post, I'm echoing the concerns. Edit: Actually it sounds like a similar problem but not exactly the same one.

The quest also didn't recognize the fact that I dinged 10 before completing it. It would have been nice if it told me at that point to go select a class. It took me a while to figure out why I wasn't leveling and the NPC was hard to find. Might as well make it the tradeskill quest NPC who let's you pick your class rather then sending players to another obscure area without any guidance.

I also missed the quest when it was gone at Level 10. Some nice tradeskill quests (in addition to the writs) could keep things interesting.

I actually had a decent time until the mid-teens when the subcombines got really annoying. I'll likely be waiting for the tradeskill revamp before I continue the saga further. And wasn't there also some talk of batch combines? That would be great.

All in all, I would say tradeskilling is a good deal better then it was at release and I hope the revamp improves it even further. I'm not claiming it's fun, because it's not. But it can be slightly entertaining or at least relaxing at times.

Also, note to EQ2-Daily: If you can, edit all those tradeskill tutorial audio segments by Vaddir (sp?) into one file and have SOE link to it because it should be required listening for new players interested in tradeskilling. It's a clear, excellent guide.


Blogger Teh Chunt said...

Tradeskilling is a cruel mistress. It's a chore, it can be very frustrating, it costs $ and time, and it can make you a lot of $$$.

I have a L27 Jeweler and a L16 Provisioner so far. Jeweler is frustrating, since it's full of sub-combines. You need to be a good alchemist to make the inks, tempers and oils needed, which isn't easy. I can make everything but the inks. (thanks Bandit for the inks :))Plus, you have to go to the forge for spikes, hooks and chains.

Compare this with provisioner. Provisioner is great. Very easy to level, since each level you have 20 more recipies. Fun to do, since all the subcombines are useful. I can turn an orange into oranje juice, candied orange, orange whiskey, etc. I can then use that candied orange to make a cake, or the oj to make even better drinks. I like the way provisioner works. You do your first combine, you have food/drink that lasts 1 hour. Combine it with another item, you get a 3 hr| food/drink with stat bonuses. So far, no advanced recipies. No rares to worry about, either. All the stuff you need comes from shrubs, traps, or fish. Everyone can use your product, and on Nagafen, food/drink prices are through the roof. So yeah, I'm liking provo more then jeweler. But Jeweler will upgrade my spells, so I'd like to level that, yet it takes a lot longer. Revamp is sorely needed to take tedium out of the process.

I agree about harvesting. Much crazier on Nagafen. Harvesting as a scout isn't bad. I keep track up, and have evac ready if I get ganked down to 1/2 life before I know it. The other night, I was harvesting in CL, and a raid of Qs rolled through. I was in the middle of harvesting, so I just kept going. As they surrounded me, I got a rare root. Woot woot!

And as the raid of greenies pummeled me, I evaced the hell outta there, with my sweet root tucked under my arm. You won't have crazy harvesting times like that on a PvE server...

2:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Batch combines huh, why not simply have a list of items you want and you can select them and they instantly appear in your inventory.

I mean come on, crafting has been deluted down to nothing as it is and now your asking for batch combines.

What happened to SoE's promise that crafting would be a intergal part of the game? If you want to write about something write about that ffs not asking for batch fucking combines.

11:11 AM  
Blogger Aggro Me said...

This was just some quick notes and I didn't want to break down the entire crafting system. But..

If you really want to know why batch combines: If something isn't interactive or fun to begin with, making you do it multiple times is a just a smokescreen. It doesn't increase the difficulty - it merely increases the tedium.

There's nothing difficult about pressing a button that lights up when an event pops. And doing it 20 times doesn't make it more difficult.

No, batch combines wouldn't make crafting more fun or complex. But the gameplay mechanic as it is now will never be fun, so I'm just trying to make it as accessible and bearable as possible.

I will do a longer post on crafting in general sometime.

3:46 PM  
Anonymous Xalmat said...

Uh, you are aware that as of Live Update 24 they are completely doing away with all subcombines right? That makes batch combines quite obsolete.

10:56 PM  
Blogger cyan said...

EQ2-Daily.com Presents Vaddir’s Crafting Segments Parts 1-4

Faster than Domino's Yo.

12:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are they really doing away with all subcombines? Even for those that need a rare component? at present, a sage can be self sufficient in making the useless App IV spells, but needs an alchemist's input to make the useful Ad III spells. This is a nice balance: you can get xp solo, but to make any money you need the help of an Alchy. If they do away with all subcombines this will be gone.

And (as usual) you're totally right, Aggrome: Tradeskilling totally sucks. It is about as much fun as plotting the most efficient rail journey between Glasgow and Turin. If you think that sounds like fun - try it. You need to work out where to get the timetables from in the first place, then who to buy the tickets from, then which trains to which destinations in which order. And you never know if you actually got it right - all rather like tradeskilling.

Weirdly, crafting was about the one thing that SWG got right, but EQ2 hasn't learned any lessons there ...

4:37 AM  
Blogger Noodle said...

Why should crafting be fun for everyone? I veiw crafting as an option, i don't have to do it, I choose to do it. I currently have a 47 Provisioner, 48 Woodworker, and a 40 Carpenter. My provisioner is my only crafter whose adventure level is higher then their crafting level. I don't craft to make plat, i don't craft because it's wildly entertaining, i craft mainly to supply my characters with items i don't want to buy from the broker.
A part of me would like to see crafting made more entertaining, but the majority of me would like to see it left as it is. Leave crafting for the hardy few who can stand the tedium, and actually enjoy the casual game play that crafting provides.
I work half the week at a full time job, and half the week as a full time at-home-dad, crafting is something i can do that's useful, productive, and can be left at a split second whenever needed.
I understand that changes will come, but i do get tired of the argument that everything should be fun for everyone. Everything will never be the same kind of entertainment for everyone, because everyone has different reasons for enjoying different aspects of the game.

8:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the changes will greatly AID in the production of MORE people LFW. Right now on ANY server you will be hard pressed to find 10 Crafters of any flavor LFW. The crafting changes are great its the other changes 'sneaking' in with the crafting that is the true root of evil.

11:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What was that? It your attacked by another player you can continue to harvest? Not for long that has to be changed.

4:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The manual tells you who to meet and generally speaking where to look for them when you ding 10 and need to decide which artisan class you want to become. I know, I know, who actually reads the manual? But the information is there and is one of the few bits of information in the manual that isn't outdated.

3:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tradeskilling as it is now and how it's going to be in the revamp is completely laughable, almost to the point where it's not even worth being in the game.

You say that it's better now than it was at launch? Are you kidding me? It was actually involving back then... don't you remember how it forced a great community with the interdependency system?

Some people just want content on a plate. Heaven forbid you have to put some effort in.

5:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree that the subcombines are a chore. To craft reasonable items you end up carrying around a bag of components you only need during tradeskilling...if then you go adventuring, yoy quickly run out of space. I think that some of this stuff should be available at the vendor, washes etc whitch are not critical to the quality should be available there for a reasonable price. Making armor, for instance, is an exasperation running back and forth to the mercahnt, the chemistry lab, etc

9:33 PM  
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