WoW/EQ2 crafting - comparison to Horizons.

Hail to the bearers of the new epidemic
Since I am waiting for WoW/EQ2 to come out in the EU, I'll be asking some questions in the meantime. Here come the first ones:
1) How does WoW/EQ2 crafting compare to Horizons'?
2) What form does player housing take? If any, is the housing modifiable by the player?
3) Is there any form of real economy in these games? Horizons' economy is completely player-run, for instance - how does this compare?

No housing.

I''ll let someone else talk about the economy.

Crafting is done somewhat differently from Horizons. Gathering is at random but fixed points in the landscape. If you find a spot which has Peacebloom, it will respawn there always. But there are no fixed resource areas, and resources that come from critters are not tied to an area like plants or mining outcrops.

There are gathering crafts (mining, skinning, herbalism) and producing crafts (smithing, tailoring, enchanting, alchemy). Enchanting uses found magic items as it''s gathering skill, so it does not have a dedicated skill. A
character can take two of these skills only.

For gathering skills, as your skills increase, you can gather higher-level resources. For crafting, skill opens up new recipes. All skills and recipes are learned at a base level from NPC''s, and then improved upon only through use. No spending xp on skills.

Some crafting items can be used to modify existing items. Armor kits will increase existing armor pieces'' armor rating, for example. Others, like potions, are useful for a very wide range of levels.

Gathered resources can be sold for a useful profit. Gathering is not a grind, but rather is done during the course of adventuring. At least that''s how I do it.

Smials,

He is talking about WoW in case you didn''t know.

If you''re really into crafting then Horizons is still the best game out there for you. Crafting in WoW isn''t as complex and doesn''t feature the depth of Horizons, but it isn''t as much of a ""grind"" that you have to spend a long time gathering resources.

EQ2 has ""housing"" but it is an instanced house and you can only add furniture and pictures and things. You cannot change the look of your house.

WoW and EQ2 do not feature a completely player run economy but Horizons is moving away from that.
They both have consignment merchatns but you can actually buy things from merchants that aren''t made by players.

Warning this is long.

Actually in EQ2 you can change the look some of your house interior.

The walls, floors and all can be upgraded to various styles for a small amount of coin.

You can buy different houses that feature larger layouts but these are still instanced. Not a bad compromise I think but I do miss my house from UO sometimes.

As for EQ2 crafting I am now level 19 crafter so can talk about it some.

Harvesting materials is sort of like horizons. You find a spawn of say ''iron'' and you double click it to mine it. If I remember correctly in Horizons you would mine it then till the resource is depleted in EQ2 you mine it once and then have to double click to mine it again. Each resource can be used 3 times total. Each resource has a common and rare that you have can get. Rares are really rare and while not needed for normal things a rare will allow you to make something a bit better. So for example iron is the common resource and lets you make iron weapons but the rare black iron would let you make a black iron weapon which is better than an iron weapon.

Resource gathering skills are increased by gather resources. The max skill you can have is capped based on your level in either adventuring or craftsmen which ever is higher.

The higher level resources are in higher level zones though so if you were to be a straight craftsman you would at some point need to start buying materials I would think as I am not sure how you would survive otherwise.

The crafting it self is level based. You basically start at crafting 3 or so and as you make items you gain xp in crafting. The harder the item is for you to make the more xp you get. The xp is modified by the quality of the item too though so if you make a real hard item in the best condition possible you would get the most. As you craft you gain skill in the area that you are crafting so if you are making an iron edge for a sword you want to make you would gain in metal working.

As you level in crafting you get your recipies from books that you can buy from a NPC to get the basics but there are also books that are dropped as loot that have other and better recipies that you will want to get from other players or yourself. You can use books based on your crafting class and level so to use a weaponsmith 21 book you would need to be a 21 weaponsmith.

Everybody starts out as an artisian and can craft from any field but at level 10 you have to narrow your profession a bit. Then at 20 you narrow it again into a specialty.

Once you make 10 and above to continue to craft you need help from other crafters in different fields. An outfitter who can make bags needs a scholar to make solutions to prepare his resources for example. In reverse a scholar needs iron spikes from an outfitter for various things as an example so there is this big inter dependency which is kind of cool but can be frustrating if you can not get the materials you need.

The actual crafting in EQ2 is very interactive. To make an item you have to know the recipie, have the materials, and be at the proper crafting station say a forge for this example. If you have all the needed ingredients for what you want to make you hit the start button at which point your item has 0% progress and 100% durability. As you craft your item will increase in progress and may decrease in durability. You have crafting skills that you can use to try to trade off progress for durability or vice versa. Plus while working an event will happen say ''red hot metal'' and you would have to counter that with the appropriate skill.

About everything you are going to make is made 1 at a time and has at least 2 or 3 components to it. At first you can buy all this stuff but by level 10 you will need to make all the components yourself or buy what you can not make from another craftsman.

So to give you an example to make an 8 slot bag you need:
1 tanned cord
1 tanned plate
1 iron buckle

To make the cord you need:
1 stretch of tanned leather
1 stroma resin (this may be a bit off but you will get the picture)

To make the plate you need:
1 stretch of tanned leather
1 stroma oil

To make the tanned leather you need:
1 average quality pelt
1 stroma wash

The buckle needs an iron bar and a eolith temper but you need somebody else to make this for you although you could make the iron bar part:
1 iron
1 eolith temper

All the tempers and stroma you would need to get from another player who can craft those in this case a scholar.

Once you have all this together and start making the bag there are 4 levels of success based on progress vs durability. Each level of success gives you better results but can become unreachable if you lose to much durabilty while crafting. Also the level of each item directly effects how well you can make the finish product.

As for the player economy in EQ2 it is rather strong at this point I think. As I said crafters already need each otehr to make anything good so there is that. Crafters also need resources so people can make a decent coin selling resources too. Player made goods are better than store purchased goods by a lot so people want player made goods. Then of course there are crafting books and regular old loot that can be found and sold sometimes dropped/quested loot will be better than player crafted but generally not always and in fact usually only for specific levels. An example of this would be at level 20 you can do quest to get some armor. Player made level 20 armor is worse than the quested stuff up till about level 25ish then the crafted stuff becomes better.

To sell stuff in EQ2 you have to have your guy online and in his room in merchant mode. You can only sell what you have on your person which is what I would say is a poor way to limit the amount of goods that can be on the market. SOE in beta also said they wanted people to interact more and that this would facilitate this but in reality all that happens is people go afk while in selling mode, I for example just do it at night since it does not hurt to leave my PC on but still not best solution.

OK sorry for the long winded response but I think this covers all of it.

Thanks for the response guys, this is very interesting (in particular Maladen, thanks for the examples, it is exactly what I was hoping to see).
One of the things that interest me in modern MMOs are ""world"" aspects such as crafting and economy. For me, one of the draws of Horizons was these things, and indeed now that the EU shards have unified I can see that the community is rebuilding the world.
The system Maladen has described is very interesting; the insistence on players being online is peculiar, but in general it seems that they have the right ideas about increasing interdependency and interaction.

Ulairi, please explain what you meant by ""Horizons is moving away from [a player-run economy]"". Seems to me that nothing is changing in that respect - the economy is still completely player-run.

WoW crafting is basically a set of simple steps. Most early potions consist of two herbs and a glass bottle. As you move up, the recipes become more difficult, and the skill increases are no longer automatic. But still very simple and easy to do once you have gathered the ingredients.

Wow really wants to be a low-downtime game, and the crafting side of things reflects that.

and the skill increases are no longer automatic.

They are always automatic when the item you are making is orange.

The crafting system in WoW is a breath of fresh air to me after playing Horizons, which is way too labor-intensive for my taste. The great thing in WoW is that it''s easy to pursue crafting in the course of adventuring for those of us who don''t want to sit in front of a machine for hours grinding xp. I''m also not a huge fan of the player-run economy in Horizons, which basically collapsed on the server I was playing on when the subscriber base plummeted. It was pretty much impossible to get the spells and equipment I needed without hunting down crafting players with adequate skill, who never seemed to be online when I was.

Yeah WoW takes a very different approach.

Crafting in EQ2 can be a full-time game/character without ever killing creatures (well you have to get your citizenship so there is some killing but......).

So to be a real crafter in EQ2 takes a small amount of dedication and time. Just like being an adventurer takes time and dedication.

If you are going to play WoW or EQ2 for the crafting I would say EQ2 is the one to play.

"Cloke" wrote:
The crafting system in WoW is a breath of fresh air to me after playing Horizons, which is way too labor-intensive for my taste. The great thing in WoW is that it''s easy to pursue crafting in the course of adventuring for those of us who don''t want to sit in front of a machine for hours grinding xp. I''m also not a huge fan of the player-run economy in Horizons, which basically collapsed on the server I was playing on when the subscriber base plummeted. It was pretty much impossible to get the spells and equipment I needed without hunting down crafting players with adequate skill, who never seemed to be online when I was.

Very good points. Horizons'' biggest weaknesses are indeed the reliance on a stable player base, and the grind. If the game had proper quests or better developed combat, it would have been more successful. However, I believe there might be some hope for them with the severe-OCD crowd

If you are going to play WoW or EQ2 for the crafting I would say EQ2 is the one to play.

I would agree with this statement. However, I think that some of the people that feel they want to only craft in an MMO, might actually enjoy the adventuring aspects of WoW. So it might not be such a heavy burden since there is some really cool and useful stuff you can make in WoW too!

Also, I can see someone making a crafting only character supported by a guild full of harvesters. As a matter of fact, several of our crafters in WoW are very appreciative of and recieve lots of donations from guildmates already.


Ulairi, please explain what you meant by ""Horizons is moving away from [a player-run economy]"". Seems to me that nothing is changing in that respect - the economy is still completely player-run.

I''ll let them do it. But they are moving away from it.

If you want to do nothing but craft in a MMOG, then you should play neither EQ2, nor WoW, but rather A Tale in the Desert.

^^ True ^^

"MoonDragon" wrote:
If you want to do nothing but craft in a MMOG, then you should play neither EQ2, nor WoW, but rather A Tale in the Desert.

Very true. ATITD is a pretty cool game. Just not the thing for me. If I can''t kill rats, it''s just not my kind of game :).

Well actually, I wasn''t after a pure-crafting experience: the things that infuriate me about Horizons are that there are no proper quests to speak of, and that hunting is broken (temporarily at least, till the rebalancing is done). Crafting is very important, but more in a ""global-economy"" way, not as an end or a means even.
Despite the fact that it seems to me that EQ2 might be a more ""hardcore"" (and therefore potentially more interesting) choice, I''ll probably be joining the WoW servers along with my wife, early next year (when it comes out in the EU) - I think it will suit her better, what with her being an MMO n00b and having already expressed the opinion that WoW''s screenshots are prettier.
Yes yes, it''s the Ratchet & Clank palette that wins here