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Thursday, 2 April 2009

Crafting Revisited

After doing some work on a new area, I was once again inspired to return to sorting out the crafting system for the new era. I first looked at the system in February last year with these posts: The Art of Crafting and Crafting In The New Era. Then recently I took a closer look at the SoZ additions in the Custom Crafting With NWNX2 post. I know this means I have diverted from plot writing again, but the crafting system is an involved part of the mechanics that I need to get done so I can then use some of its concepts to start adding items to the world and thereby give added reason for PCs to explore.

Enchanting Recipes Of The Past

The Althéa Campaign makes use of all the current crafting systems available in the OC and expansions. However, I have tried to make the more awkward system (the OC for some people) easier to understand and use. To this end, a new tome (currently entitled "Enchanting Recipes Of The Past") has been added to help explain the differences between all the systems that are available to those players who will want to take up crafting. I hope that the rewritten combined system will encourage players to try it out, especially as crafting will be the sure-fast way of acquiring more useful items for the adventurer within the world of Althéa.

Over A Hundred Recipes!

The tome is more than a book simply explaining more about crafting. It will also contain every formula from every one of the 27 recipe books from the original NWN2 campaign! Their inclusion into one tome is explained in the tome itself and forms part of the back-story. As a consequence, however, the PC must have the tome carried somewhere in their party to be able to craft an item in its pages.

The above image shows only the start of the book, as I still need to write the many chapters that cover the formulas. However, the structure of the tome and its added contents guide will make locating an item formula (that a PC can actually do) much easier! Chapters still to be added include: Armour, Weapons, Bracers, Belts, Boots, Cloaks, Amulets, Rings, Grenades, Venoms & Special. Then, within each category, it will be clear what level the PC needs to be before any further requirements (ingredients) will be listed separately for the individual items. Note, however, each chapter begins with a brief explanation of basic requirements that will not be repeated in each item description, thereby removing much superfluous text that can often confuse the reader.

Quick Reference Appendices

The tome will also include appendices that will help the player know how to acquire the different essences (by naming which monster parts yield which essences) and a brief list of spells and gems, etc. that are needed to craft all the items in the tome. Hopefully, the tome will act as a one-stop quick reference guide to make crafting a lot more accessible to players than it is at the moment. As I said at the start, Althéa will also include the two crafting systems that come with the expansion packs. My hope is that this revamped version of the original will complement them well and help to make a complete and comprehensive system for Althéa.

Campaign Specific

As the economy and ecology of Althéa differs from the standards in the toolset (presumably set for Toril), I need to make campaign copies of every crafting item reflecting these aspects. I.e. Prices are a lot cheaper because gold is rarer and some descriptions mention locations that are not within the world of Althéa and therefore need updating. Furthermore, I have found that the original official craft dropping scripts don't work as I first expected, which means I am having to add code to ensure monster drops are working. Doing this and adding the text to the tome is a fair amount of work, but is something I hope to get done over the coming days (or weeks?).

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