Thoughts On Crafting In WoW and WAR

I've been thinking a lot about crafting lately, as Wormson chases down the last few non-bind-on-pickup tailoring recipes and has finally made his awesome frost-and-shadow robe. I'm also looking for jewelcrafting recipes for him, and seeing the number of items appearing in the auction house search for "usable items" decreasing is a great pleasure. It's becoming apparent that crafting skills have to be chosen carefully, and I'm keeping a close eye on the Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning news to see what way things will play out there.

In WoW, you can take up any two "professions" - main line crafting skills. These are divided into gathering and crafting skills, which do pretty much what they say. However, there are other, less evident divisions within the crafting skills. Some of them are useful to every class, and some are only useful to particular ones.

For instance, blacksmithing is simply not useful for a caster class. Leatherworking is useless for cloth-wearers, and tailoring is equally useless for plate classes. Sure, you can theoretically make stuff for other people, but your customers are again limited by class, and it's often the case that raid and PvP drops outclass anything you can make that's not bind-on-pickup.

But if you're an alchemist, a jewelcrafter, or an enchanter, your products can be used by anyone, and they're rarely if ever surpassed by other sources. So there's more interest in those tradeskills than in the more limited ones. Inscription may be even better in this respect, when it appears.

So far, we know of Butchering, Scavenging, Cultivating, and an Alchemy-type skill, called Apothecary in WAR. The first three are gathering skills, the last a crafting skills, and you can take one gathering and one crafting skill. Butchering is like skinning in WoW, to some degree; it allows you get extra loot from "unintelligent" mobs - skins, meat, and so on. Scavenging is the same thing for intelligent creatures, allowing you to retrieve things like gold teeth, extra hidden coins, and also things like leeches (ewww). Cultivating lets you retrieve seeds and spores from the kills, and grow them into plants.

There are no recipes, as such, in WAR. Apothecary is the only crafting skill we know of yet, and there, the idea is that you have a base ingredient, which is "unstable" - as I understand it, this means that if you try to use it on its own, it'll probably fail. You can add other ingredients, first to stabilise, and then to improve or add extra effects to your base ingredient. The output is potions of varying degrees of usefulness.

Apothecary looks like it's going to be generally useful, and so far, all three of the gathering skills feed into it. So really, we need to wait until we see the other crafting skills before I can start deciding what I want my characters there to do. Still, it's all good info...

Posted by Drew Shiel at April 28, 2008 12:55 PM

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