Struggling with WildStar’s crafting

house

Featured above: Not my house.

I’ve made it a mini-resolution of mine to spend a half-hour here and there gamely working away at the architecture tradeskill in WildStar. It’s not exactly a system that lends itself well to marathon power sessions; I can take about 30 minutes of wrestling with it before desperately wanting to go do something else.

Architecture didn’t really get a makeover as some of the other tradeskills did (or so I heard) with the Reloaded patch, so it’s pretty much the same system since launch. If you haven’t played WildStar, the crafting here tries to be a little more involved and mini-gamey than your typical “recipe” system. When you load up a recipe, you can make a basic item with a click of a button, or you can add certain items to move around a cursor on a bullseye to reach certain areas that will make different or improved versions of the item. It was an interesting idea, but it has some significant flaws, including:

  1. Not being very engaging or fun process overall, nor visually engaging.
  2. Every time you start a new craft, the results of the additives (the things you pay for to move the cursor) move a little differently than last time, which means the additive combo you just successfully used to make something might not work this time around. Sure, you could argue that keeps things spicy, but when you’re making a lot of things it’s incredibly annoying.
  3. There’s no option to mass produce something once you make an item. Every… single… craft… has you struggling with the bullseye board. Hence why I can’t do it for more than a half-hour at a time.
  4. Sometimes the bullseye board hides where your target is, forcing you to waste materials doing blind crafting with the hopes of tracking down the target, Battleship-style.

I’m about midway through the journey to the top. Happily, I do have an abundance of mats and plenty of money to buy what I lack. I also am not complaining about accumulating a lot of useful housing decor, although I’m slightly worried that I’ll eventually max out my 2000-decor limit and have to pay for an upgrade to my crate.

I can see what Carbine was going for with this whole system, but it doesn’t mean I have to like it. I would much rather a traditional crafting system or a revamp that reduces the annoyances here.

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3 thoughts on “Struggling with WildStar’s crafting

  1. ZombiePirate November 2, 2015 / 9:45 am

    My daughter received a toy Rowsdowser as a present, so with the advent of F2P I decided to get an account and go show her what they were like in game and maybe even play a little with her, sadly, I’ve gotten a character to level 8 and can’t actually stand playing it. It just doesn’t gel with me for some reason. I think I’ve been spoiled with TOR’s voiced quests. Wildstar just feels really, silent to me.

  2. Kevin Brill (@kevinbrill) November 2, 2015 / 4:37 pm

    I really dislike the system. My impression of it boils down to a lack of usability. I think there’s room for a better user experience without changing the core of how crafting works.

    For instance, why do I have to re-select the recipe of the item I just made if I want to make another one? This is *super* tiresome, but it doesn’t have much of an impact (I wouldn’t think) on the spirit behind the crafting system. I’d think too, that you should be able to “remember” the path you’ve chosen to successfully create an item, and re-use it each time you want to create. It still keeps the “discovery” aspect of crafting an item for the first time, but subsequent times aren’t as tedious.

  3. Kevin Brill (@kevinbrill) November 2, 2015 / 4:40 pm

    Oh, and I’m totally cool with a well designed, “tedious” crafting system. I loved the complexity and challenge behind Vanguard’s crafting. It was very challenging when recipe were slightly above your crafting level, due to the complications that would get thrown your way. However, as you leveled past a recipe, they were much easier to rip through and there were fewer and fewer complications.

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