Golemizer 2.0 … Crafting
I had fun with the last post so let’s continue! One day these ideas might actually be part of Golemizer 2 so consider this as a teaser with no ETA. If you are an investor … my mail is firstname.lastname@example.org I developed the first version of Golemizer with almost no money so we’re not talking about millions here …
If you can see it you can craft it
It’s quite true about the current version of Golemizer (besides items sold in the Altus store and some exceptions) but I’d like to push it a bit by adding things likes trees, flowers and by offering single-use blueprints instead of items in the Altus Store.
Currently there is the Urban Engineer who is selling some items that cannot be crafted and I find this a bit annoying. It was meant as a sinkhole for gold but it could have been handled better. Why not buy blueprints instead. You might not be able to learn a specific skill to “craft” a tree but as a mad scientist it would be so much better to experiment to try to grow the perfect tree instead of just buying one, dropping it in your city and hope that your dice roll is good when you cut it (and trees bought this way have limited quality).
Same thing for the Altus Store. I’d like players to have a guarantee of obtaining special items but still give them a shot to improve them a bit. This could even open a new market for players specializing in improved items bought with real cash and resold to other players for gold. It would require to find a significant use for gold but I’ll keep that for another post.
All stats for everything
As Golemizer became bigger I’ve been faced with a problem. Some old items I didn’t expect to be used in crafting didn’t have the right stats. A good example is furniture. I never thought a golem would require furniture to be crafted. Yet it happened with the Bedside-Manner. All items used in the crafting of a golem (and often other items) have an impact on the stats. The problem is that furniture were never meant to have the required stats for a golem. Sure I made it happened but the process to make it happen was just annoying.
So in version 2.0 every items would have all stats. And instead of each item having its own structure to store those stats there would be only 1 structure that all items would use. From the point of view of players it wouldn’t change much as irrelevant stats wouldn’t be shown anyway but from my side it makes everything much simple.
No fixed recipes
I wish the current crafting system in Golemizer would offer more customization. Why can’t you use cow blood in your zombie? Why can’t you put a rat’s brain in there? What about trying to put that rare flower in the mix to hope that it will boost stats?
Currently there’s a single way to craft every items and golems in Golemizer. That’s not good enough for me. While each items might have some required items (would be hard to craft a wood table without wood) why not add some more resource slots in there to allow more customization? Want to put that highly valuable crystal in your table recipe? You can do it! Well ok the table example is lame (or is it …) but for golems it would be quite interesting.
The point is that I want more than just the quality of resources to matter here. I want the type of resources to matter. Even more I want the mix of resources to matter. That particular flower with that particular type of blood will give this power to your Rougarou. For version 1.0 I added some experimentation system that never felt as good as I wanted it to be and that ended up being quite hard to manage with new golems. It was basically some kind of grinding mechanic and for a game that claims to have no grinding I wish I would have done this better. Basically the system is to kill targets of higher power to accumulate points that allow you to raise the stats of your golems. This kind of system might fit more a game focused on PvP and again this is not quite how I wanted Golemizer to be.
Why have I built such systems when I now say it’s not quite what I wanted? Call it experience. Call it learning.
That’s one of the earliest request from players. The truth is that Golemizer wasn’t built to easily handle that. In Golemizer each item is unique. I mean totally independent from anything else in the game. That can be great but it can be quite annoying when you introduced some bogus item or resources with stats that doesn’t make sense.
So instead of having items as unique records in a database I’d have them as quantities based on their stats. Want to put together 20 units of wood? Fine but all these units will now have stats equal to the worse unit of wood. That’s the cost to pay to stack resources.
In games like WoW it’s not much of a trouble as leather is leather. Wood is wood. Rag is rag. Not in Golemizer. Some unit of wood can have higher stats than an another one. So if you want to stack some you’ll have to deal with the lower stats. And it’s not that bad really. Things like houses currently require you to craft large wood module which requires you to craft medium wood modules which requires you to craft small wood modules. In the end the stats of the wood used might not matter that much for a house. Maybe if you’re building some fancy stuff you’ll want to have the best wood available but for something that doesn’t decay like a house you might not care as much and then agree to stack units of woods.
Know what’s in there
Another thing I underestimated in Golemizer is how some players would start to collect bugged items or items that are no more available … and how they would receive so much attention from other players. And I like that! One thing that is bothering me in Golemizer 1.0 is that some furniture for example requires resources with high quality to be crafted but that in the end it really doesn’t matter. A fancy table is just a fancy table. What if you were crazy enough to put a ruby on it? I’m sure you’d like other players to know about it. And what if that ruby was the best ruby ever found in the game? You’d have the most valuable table ever!
So in Golemizer 2.0 you would be able to know what’s behind an item. What was used to craft it and what were the stats of the resources. It might seems silly a bit but for a game where I want crafting to be everything I think it can have an important role. If just to be amazed of what players will come up with.
There is currently 1 tree in Golemizer that can give some pretty amazing wood. The problem is that this amazing wood is being digested in some stats that is being considered as disposable. Disposable as not quite important as one day it will be gone and by the end you have no way of telling that this was the best *whatever* ever crafted in Golemizer. I’d like to fix that for Golemizer 2.0. If it’s a crafting game then I want that crafting madness be important which is not currently.
Exploration and not mindless repetition
Again one of my goal with Golemizer was to avoid repetition, grind. I failed on some spots like not providing machine to automatically craft some low quality items or to harvest resources. In version 1.0 there is too much “try again”. Cutting a tree and getting a bad result is not interesting. What if you knew you were not getting woods at a good spot. What if discovering a new area was a sign of a great discovery.
I managed to get that under control in some way by having golems dig tunnels under players’ homes. It was ok but not perfect. It created huge mazes which is nice for some players but not so much for others. The answer was teleporters which fixed part of the issue. What I’d like though for version 2.0 would be to players discovers some amazing zones to get resources. Maybe even some private zones. Found a nice spot to get high quality metal in your dungeon? Well you might be able to get metal from it for severals days without having to move your golems around. Explored a new part of the world? Well maybe you discover the most amazing spot for some flowers that will be expired in a few days. I want players to chase after these rare spots. Not just shoot everywhere and hope for the best.
Of course once you found that miraculous spot it might mean quite a lot of repetition. But what if you could only set your golems to work in that area instead of having to constantly keep and eye on them. It would mean you would focus on getting better golems to dig instead of spending most of your time giving them new orders. I know here that I’m not talking in terms that can easily translate for players but that would be the path I’d follow for any new implementation of a resource gathering in Golemizer 2.0. Less time rolling dices and more time planning how best your resources are spent.
These are basic guidelines I would follow to implement a new crafting system in Golemizer 2.0. It doesn’t reveal everything but this is how I would approach it once the time for Golemizer 2 has come. It needs to matter more and it needs to be less painful than other games. Maybe some golems would be autonomous to discover new resources maybe more efficient crafting tools would be available through special quests. It’s not yet set in stone. What matters is the global direction I would take on crafting. I underestimated the value of crafting at first even though I wanted it to be the primary focus of the game. Mostly because I tried to cover too much ground at once I guess. I tried to appeal to too many different type of players. Some will say that this is what makes Golemizer interesting but I’ll say that this is what prevented Golemizer from getting bigger. I haven’t given enough attention to crafters while it was the niche I was aiming for. Sure Golemizer is still amazing but from a business point of view it’s just too spread. I should have focused on crafters first. It doesn’t mean crafters can’t be interested in combat (if their creation meant they have an edge in combat) for example. So I guess it means I’m not done yet with my Golemizer 2.0 posts. Keep following for more. One day that game will become reality. I’m the first to wish it was for tomorrow.