Some Thoughts

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Some Thoughts

Postby Dakhal » Sun Oct 15, 2017 2:00 am

First off, I'll start with saying hello to everybody once again. I keep popping in and out, and I feel like each time, I post something to these boards in the form of a suggestion. So let's make one about one of my favorite crafting professions.

Okay, let's get started. I've always wanted to do leatherworking but I never did get the chance because it didn't match with my character's concept, and as much as I would have liked to do it, it just wouldn't fit and I couldn't break my own immersion. But I have always kept an eye on it and when the generalization of abilities came through, I watched it get brutally torn apart into what it is today. All in all, the way it's set up was produced logically, but perhaps unrealistically. There are some caveats in that thought though and there are a number of things that likely push people away from this ability.

It's been mentioned before, that leatherworked items simply weigh /too much/. In fact, they weigh the same weight as how many pelts it required to create the item in question. I'm sure that there's been some looking into it, so I'm not pointing fingers, it's just an observation. Say you wanted to make a breastplate because you just love the idea of having your own custom leathers? I hope you're ready to wear 16 pounds in just one slot- almost comparable to a plate breastplate. Whew, that's some heavy light armour. Surely it's got similar stopping power? Ack! That halberd disagrees!

Jokes aside, let's move on.

Leatherworking in it's current state is /demanding/. It is far more difficult than blacksmithing in many ways and at least ten times as dangerous to pursue (assuming you gather your own skins). Honestly, leatherworking raises surprisingly fast if you have a decent amount of pelts to work with. However, skinning is another story entirely. If you want to gather quality pelts, be prepared to spend months raising your skinning skill- even with the changes to how fast skills raise now compared to the past. Mining does not suffer from this problem, and it's infinitely safer to boot. Heck, even those ores are far more valuable than any pelt you can bring into town, and even more valuable once smelted into bars. However, that doesn't really matter, because you know.. metals don't have a quality rating like skinned pelts do.

The quality of the stuff you make from blacksmithing is based entirely upon your skill and a touch of luck. If you want to gather pelts that aren't absolutely abysmal, you'll need one of two skills: Bushcraft: Basics or Skinning Focus. Mining requires no such skill. Simply grab a pickaxe, a lantern.. or a candle if you're feeling particularly cheap, and head into the nearest mine and swing happily away. You're guaranteed to turn some kind of profit and so long as you're smart, you won't die doing it. But if you want a bear pelt, you'd best head out there into the wilds, pray that you don't get murderized by the RNG gods and take it down. And then subject yourself to another roll hoping that your skinning skill allows you to get a goo-- oh hell, right. You need hundreds of skill to even pull a good skin from a bear despite it not actually providing any different benefit from, say, rabbit skin.

I understand that it's a huge undertaking to make all of the available skin types to actually provide different kinds of benefits, so that's not really what I'm asking. But skinning is horrific in terms of raising to a respectable level to allow you to pull a decent skin. Honestly, it may be best to just flat out remove quality from the equation from skins. They're worth the same to a vendor no matter if they're perfect or ratty-tatty abominations of flesh hanging together by mangled sinew. Metals from mining don't suffer crafting penalties because the ore that's pulled out is 'impure', so it may be best if skinning doesn't determine quality at all, and instead the chance to actually pull one off. This does invalidate abilities, but it is a solution to a problem.

Continuing past that rant, let's mention how you need three abilities to unlock what was once considered 'the norm' for leathercrafting. I get the reason it was done, but it just doesn't work. One ability lets you make a slightly tougher version of leather and the other lets you use exotic materials. Cool. Right? Not really. You could choose to do leatherworking and devote yourself to making armour that barely anybody uses, as most people will either go unarmoured or heavy. Not sure why this is, really. Is it that there's no good leather armour due to a lack of players who actually make it? Maybe. I'm not actually sure on this, but I think that only NPCs can repair leather. That's kind of a problem as well, if it's the case. You don't need to repair clothes, and a smith can easily hammer out those dents from your favorite platemail.

I derailed myself a bit. So, three abilities for leatherworking (four if you want to get skins that aren't just pathetic). So, let's go with the four-points-required thought. You can do either leatherworking and use those four points.. or you can do blacksmithing and get all of the abilities! Did I mention that you don't need to have an ability to mine? Or to use those higher tier materials, such as sunsteel or celestium? And with those four abilities you used, you can make all types of weapons and armour (that's available to non-artisans) including some general items you can sell for profit! Or being the masochistic soul you are, you decided to do leatherworking and be able to make armour from skin tatters and some basic containers. You can even make a leather targe!

Let's put this to a wrap in a tl;dr summary.

Blacksmithing doesn't require you to have an ability to gather the material you need, and said material doesn't have a quality that can lower your rolls like skinning does. Proposed solution? Invalidate Bushcraft: Basics and Skinning Focus, simply have skinning be your chance to pull a skin from a corpse. No low-quality, average or perfect, just flat like that metal you just hammered out of the earth. Put the two styles on an even field. Blacksmithing doesn't require an ability for you to craft a stronger type of armour? Just get the ability and you're set! Blacksmithing doesn't require an ability to work with it's type of exotic material? Just get the ability and you're set! Suggested solution? Just merge all of leatherworking into it's own skill. My logic on this is purely that you don't need abilities for blacksmithing that the leatherworking tree does. Simply grab the ability and you have it all. And you can even have access to a type of weapon and general items while you're at it, for the same price!

This post isn't meant to berate or belittle anything, if you're offended, I'm sorry. My sense of humour is very easily seen as an affront. I'm an offensive guy. I'm sure a lot of work goes into these systems (in fact, I know a lot of work goes into these systems), so trust when I say that I'm not attacking your project. I wouldn't make a post like this if I didn't care.

Here's a tl;dr for the tl;dr
-------------------------------------------
invalidate skinning abilities
merge leatherworking abilities
make skins have no quality like metals
even the field between leather and metal crafting
also item weights
also player leather repairs if thats not a thing



(20th Ability Slot When?)

Love ya,
-Dakhal
Love me or hate me, both are in my favor. If you love me, I'll always be in your heart. If you hate me, I'll always be in your mind.
I lead a Life of Sin.

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Re: Some Thoughts

Postby Stranger » Sun Oct 15, 2017 8:29 am

If you need skins I can provide those for you as long as you have a reasonable amount of gold to compensate my time with. I can get you anything you want at almost any quality, just don't expect pristine drakolin scales. (but I -can- get those if you want really them, just expect to pay for the extra trouble)

I tend to always keep up to date on the forum so if anyone need anything please post a request here. I would like to say, "post it on the town boards for an IC request" But sadly there are at least 3 town boards and I don't always have time to check those. I really wish we could centralize them all on this forum somehow. That way we can know OOC'ly about IC'ly goings on.
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Re: Some Thoughts

Postby Lun » Sun Oct 15, 2017 11:22 am

I think it'd be nice to have no qualities flat across the board. I know quality was considered for cooking, but eventually scrapped. The way blacksmithing handles a quality-free piece of material and converts it to something according to the skill of the crafter is something I'd like to see reflected in leatherworking. Since foraging, mining, and logging all produce material that is free of quality, why is skinning different? Not withstanding that there are more skills involved in obtaining the materials for skinning that the other three.

The biggest barrier for any player to take on player-crafted leather armor and leatherworks is the sheer weight of the combined pelts, if I'm remembering correctly. If this issue was resolved, I think a lot more people would be willing to wear crafted leatherworks and it'd get more popularity.

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Re: Some Thoughts

Postby preiman » Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:30 pm

Actually players can repair leather, and depending on their skill seem to be less likely to lower quality than NPCs. As to pelt qualities, the markets might not offer much difference in price, but trust me when I say that leatherworkers do. pelt quality makes big difference when you’re actually making the items and a good leatherworker will pay good money for that bonus. The same goes for different types of pelts and skins. Mobile people, fur is the best armor they want to wear, and when they do they don’t want to wear rabbit fur, so again, good leatherworkers will pay more for some skins. Also consider that bunnies and such are very safe, they also only give one pelt, while the more dangerous things give quite a few, so hunting them is overall more productive, profitable and makes you look way cooler than the guy hunting wabbits. Are there easier ways to make money, yeah, but this is meant to be an RP mud and as such, I’d hope that most people’d not be put off playing a trapper, just because mining starts off easier. Mind, mining is actually really hard to get started, is more dangerous than you think, can take days of grinding to start finding useful things and months to find the good stuff. Took me a month to be able to mine iron. Yeah mining eventually gets relatively safe, that is cave ins and gas leaks happen less and you have RT that will consistently let you evade them, but in that time I could have easily trained myself to easily kill a stag and skin it. Instead I’m failing to Dodge rocks and getting eaten by spiders I don’t have the skills to fight.
So yeah mining will make you more long term but in the short term hunting really is more profitable, and frankly more fun, I don’t know anyone who actually enjoys mining.
Now if you want a real quick money maker, herbalism, I could easily make a couple grand in about half an hour gathering herbs.
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Re: Some Thoughts

Postby Dakhal » Sun Oct 15, 2017 12:39 pm

I'm sorry to say that I can't agree with what you're saying. I've done both mining and leatherworking both, and I was able to pull up iron and other varying good materials within hours of work. Mining scales much faster than skinning does, and stating that leatherworkers will pay a lot for those high quality pelts doesn't change my point. There's a reason they pay as much as they do for the pelts, and that's because skinning is far too difficult to raise, thus making high quality pelts a rarity. But where are these leatherworkers you speak of, that are buying pelts?

I'm also sorry to say that fur is only good for warmth, which is very easy to get just by wearing clothing and sometimes stopping by a fire source, which are plentiful in the world. A stag is also far more dangerous than most people can actually handle, they can dish out some surprising levels of damage due to one of their attacks depending on your ranged defense for whatever reason. I've seen people die to them quickly since weapons don't parry ranged attacks, and most people don't have amazing dodge without dedicating days of time to raising it.

It also takes a decent amount of skill, perhaps 200-300 to actually pull an average quality pelt reliably from stag and similar mobs and raising that skill is really a bother as you quickly run out of things to raise the skill reliably on until you're very competent at combat.

The point of this topic isn't to say what is most profitable, but to point out a very clear problem with the leatherworking system. (By the way, pelts are worth like 20 riln a piece. If I spent an hour mining, I could easily make thousands of riln with much less effort.)
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Re: Some Thoughts

Postby preiman » Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:21 pm

Try asking around, I know of quite a few active leatherworkers who don’t do much with it because they don’t have pelts. Most eventually just started getting them themselves, but would rather just buy them. I too have done both, a stag will usually run away rather than fight so dodge matters less than stealth, and if you bring one down, you can count on a fair payday even if you don’t get skins, as you can also sell the meat for a good price. So one stag, 4 pelts, a couple pieces of fat and sinew, and half a pack of meat. Not a bad payday even if you botch the pelts, and by the time you bring one down you should have enough skill to avoid that. In the meantime you have the small game, foxes, and the wolves the guards kill in ebon pass so it’s not like things to get practice on are hard to find. The meat alone should keep you well off while you get the skill up. I also can’t emphasize enough, that while you’re doing all this you’re gaining combat skills which is something that’s very much not true of mining. Mining also requires significant initial investment which is very much not true of hunting.
Also fur armor is good for far more than warmth. Nearly as protective as soft leather and less detrimental to things like stealth, dodge and channeling.
Also yes, a skilled minor can pull a couple grand in an hour, but let’s not pretend that doesn’t come with a significant time investment before you are anywhere near able to do that, and if you didn’t want a discussion of which was more profitable, you probably shouldn’t of brought it up in your initial post. Comparisons like that tend to steer the conversation.
"I don't think we're ever going to find out what is going on with these canim, where are they coming from?!"
Kent arrives from the southeast.
Kent hugs you.
say um
You say, "Um."
a Mistral Lake sentry arrives from the east, armor clanking.
Kent heads north.

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Re: Some Thoughts

Postby Dakhal » Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:25 pm

I had a single sentence in a several paragraph post that you nitpicked out of. Don't give me that. I won't bother arguing with you, as you've ignored what I've said already and there's no point in repeating myself.

I'll keep what you're saying in mind, sure, but I am still in disagreement.
Love me or hate me, both are in my favor. If you love me, I'll always be in your heart. If you hate me, I'll always be in your mind.
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Re: Some Thoughts

Postby preiman » Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:35 pm

Disagreeing with you is not the same thing as ignoring your points.Please point out where I am ignoring what you said because that isn’t my intent. I disagreed with some of your points and argued against them. Other points I agreed with so left out of my responses.
"I don't think we're ever going to find out what is going on with these canim, where are they coming from?!"
Kent arrives from the southeast.
Kent hugs you.
say um
You say, "Um."
a Mistral Lake sentry arrives from the east, armor clanking.
Kent heads north.

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Re: Some Thoughts

Postby Lun » Sun Oct 15, 2017 3:13 pm

For the record, I enjoy mining! And please de-escalate, you both have fair points. I think the topic was meant to bring to light the disparity between Leatherworking and other comparable professions, i.e. Blacksmithing, Herbalism, and more.

Looking at it from purely as a RP tool/option for players, leather armor is too heavy for its class. It's supposed to be light armor, but a cuirass made by a player can be around 20 lbs and provide little to no protection. Hence the references to weight being a major hurdle for players interested in player made leatherworks. Yes, we have leatherworkers who do produce armor. I've got sets of it! But if I can wear a near-full set of medium or heavy armor and feel much safer with slightly higher stealth penalties, by golly I will. This is an issue inherent to the fact that we can't just don on light armor and walk off as a lightweight fighter. We have to min-max our weight in order to get our lightweight rolls, our tumbles, our flips.

As far as danger goes, I've found that combat is rather consistently more dangerous than mining. Yes, mining can result in a one hit kill. However, it happens for the most part in the safety of a town, where you can quickly bandage to stop the bleeding and flee to the infirmary for a quick heal. In the wild, there's a lot more danger involved. For one, the rocks don't try to hit you every 5 seconds.

Quality: Pelts have varying levels of value, and on top of that, are a scarce resource. Like Preiman said, you can kill a stag and get four pelts. You can kill a rabbit and get a single skin. It's something you have to chase down, kill, and then skin, but you might not get a skin, and if you do, it might not be QUALITY. Quality being the issue, because YES, leatherworkers will buy pelts. Yes, leatherworkers will buy higher quality pelts more than lower quality pelts, but when you compare it to a similar profession, quality simply doesn't exist in materials. You can pluck perfectly preserved herbs out of the ground, and the ore you smelt is always perfectly 100% that material. Your logs aren't nicked or too damaged for market selling, the list goes on. This is a great thing. It's just good for gameplay.

There's no such thing as a terribly smelted bar of copper. So why should there be this disparity when it comes to skinning? There's a huge gateway for skinners, the initial investment of time to get to ~200 skinning when you can get average pelts. I'm throwing that number off the top of my head, I don't actually know it. Mining, you can get lead, copper, tin, or other quality-free materials with hours of investment. The only bar to accessing iron and higher tier materials is access to a resource, which can take forever.

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