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Crafter's Roundtable: Fletching and Ammunition

    • 1532 posts
    July 31, 2018 7:32 AM PDT

    As part of our effort to build and support the crafting community for Pantheon, here's another weekly Crafter's Roundtable from the staff of Pantheon Crafters :)

    For today's crafter's roundtable, let's talk about the game economy a bit.  Specifically, let's talk about Fletching - that is, making arrows (or really, any other types of ammunition as well).  As crafters, how much do you think ammunition should matter for the people who use it?  Should ammunition be unlimited or should people have to come back for more periodically?  Should there be special types of ammunition that provide different effects or bonuses?  And most importantly, what should the requirements to craft ammunition look like?

    Add your thoughts here if you'd like, or feel free to come talk about them in the thread on Pantheon Crafters as well!

    • 43 posts
    July 31, 2018 8:25 AM PDT

    Ammo is a money sink and helpful for the economy, so yes it should matter to keep it active and increasingly important. I'm just gonna use arrows for my example.

    In EQ, it really didn't matter to anyone but rangers what type ammo you use cuz there wasn't enough difference in types of arrows you could create.  There needs to be a noticeable difference to make it worth while for tanks or other pullers to use them.

    Another thing that helps with this is allowing other effects on the arrows.  Arrows that do DoT or cause an AoE like stun or decrease aggro, like smoke grenades thrown into a group can cause a stun effect or gas that can knock people out.  I've always wanted to see ammo that can affect the aggro in a group of mobs.  I small dart that annoys a mob but not enough to alert the whole group.

    As far as crafting them, my favorite way to approach it was kinda how Mortal Online did it.  If you wanted to make something out of a certain wood, you had to study it. But those lessons did not help you to make the same thing except out of bone or an alloy.  Each material class had it's own training.  They took it a little too far for my personal taste, but the idea of it made sense and it gave crafting an additional element of challenge.

    • 167 posts
    July 31, 2018 11:48 AM PDT

    I do feel there should be various types of arrows (stones for slings, bolts for crossbows if part of the game). Firstly; they should be a part of a quiver and not within inventory bagspace. Secondly, quivers should not be unlimited in size but of various crafted sizes (just like bags). I do not feel there should be much weight encumberance assigned to ammo though; the weight can be assigned to the weapon slinging the ammunition. I am neutral on whether Fletching should need to be done at a workstation or anywhere but I am in favor of mobs dropping arrows or arrow parts. If a craftstation is required, I would not be opposed to being able to craft Rough Arrows out in the boonies away from a workstation in case of emergancy. Maybe Roughs could have reduced DPS in that case.

    Each type of arrow should be for varying situations. Knowing which arrow type and knowing when to use or not use them is part of getting your best bang for the buck in terms of DPS. Think of some of the arrow types encountered elsewhere; Blunt, Piercing, Ice, Fire, Poison, Charm, Forgetfulness, Stun, Sleep, etc. Not all of those are DnD terms but serve the point to illustrate that fleshing out a class to be uniquely its own needs a variety of tools for a variety of situations. Think of the Drow in the Forgotten Realms series with their small hand held crossbow and their Bolts of Sleep. Those defined the Drow in the books and for a games purpose they can be Class or Race defining if designed as such.

    Others using ranged weapons as a pulling tool generally care about creating aggro on a mob and will use the cheapest and least likely to miss ammo available. They really aren't out to throw a hand axe or shoot an arrow to cause an effect with something (much more expensive), they just want the mob to come at them so they can filet them with their shiny sword.

    Crafting should be an intricate and involved process. Having a variety of ammo types adds to the crafting experience. Crafting any of the ammo types should take time and have chances to fail. This along with materials creates the money sink people seem to be in love with caring about.

     


    This post was edited by Dashed at July 31, 2018 11:51 AM PDT
    • 264 posts
    July 31, 2018 1:46 PM PDT

    I like the idea of ammunitions being part of your gear. And that means that just like in real life, some arrows are better than others, and people should be able to loot them or craft them.

    If a player want to invest into expensive arrows to deal more damage vs a certain type of ennemy that's great. 

    • 3 posts
    July 31, 2018 6:16 PM PDT

    Swords never run out of "sword juice" (unless they take wear, which can often be repaired in the field anyway), so you have to be careful with limited ammo. Rather than limit "basic" ammo, I think it's best to only limit "special" ammo. For example, an arrow that freezes an enemy in place would be limited and have a relatively small stack size; if you want a ton of them, you need the space to carry them.

    As for mats, basic unlimited ammo should require mats that are easy to medium to acquire. Special ammo should require mats that are medium to hard to acquire. Perhaps there is a rare type of wood... or expensive wood has to be enchanted by another crafter or a specific NPC or at a special place... or unusual and rare animal parts (like a yeti's gizzard) are required to produce the "special" effect.

    Bottom line: if you treat basic ammo like a sword and special ammo like a special consumable, you are on the right track.

    -Foam

    • 102 posts
    August 1, 2018 4:56 AM PDT

    I like that idea, foamhead. Regular old ammo should be infinite, but if you want to have some special effect it should be similar to a consumable.

     

    To build on that, perhaps some 'ammo upgrades' would be permanent (or until changed by the player), and granted by buying an upgrade from a fletcher/crafter. Very minor ones, such as small percentage increases to damage, or range or slightly altering the damage type - these would be akin to a regular weapon enchant, while significant effects for your ammo would be the finite kind.

     

    To avoid a cluttered inventory or whatever, each time a player purchased one of these upgrades for their ammo, it could go into their 'quiver' inventory, which might function as some kind of dropdown to pick which kind of ammo you'd like to use, and requiring a short, out-of-combat cast time to change them. Almost like stances, I guess, but with the really special ones being limited use.

    • 33 posts
    August 13, 2018 9:10 AM PDT

    being from EQ1, and WoW both before and after ammo was a thing. i support Finite Ammo and have it stored in a quiver, whether this quiver takes up a backpack slot or is worn on the character as a Secondary Ranged Weapon. i understand the want for Infinite basic ammo, but rangers do not seem to be made strictly for ranged combat. after all they are a "ranger" not an Archer. and i know they have the abilities Engage and disengage which are to jump in and out of melee range. having a finite resource for your ranged attacks makes a ranger plan and conserve ammo as needed instead of just face rolling his keyboard from a nearby hill/rock. if all you want to do is spam ranged attacked at a relatively slow paced basis, i'd opt for a wizard. however, if you REALLY want an "infinite" base grade ammo, perhaps have Mage's be able to "Conjure Ammo: Arrows" for something that lets them atleast fire thier bow should they have gotta careless forming a group bond or social service, like Wizard/drui Taxi, Cleric Food and water. ect.

     

    also @Foamhead, for something like Frost Arrows, that would more so be a skill, not ammo type. ammo would more then likely simply affect accuracy, damage, and possibly crit chances as a passive effect.

    @Rokuzachi, it'd be better to have them enchant the bow itself then the ammo type, however the ranger should also be able to poison his arrows, indirectly through his bow, through the use of alchemy if they took that as their specialization.


    This post was edited by Snoochy at August 13, 2018 9:17 AM PDT
    • 32 posts
    November 9, 2018 9:32 AM PST

         It would be awesome if you could craft different ammunition for different damage types. There should be a good variety of ammunition that you can use and craft. On the other hand, there should be a decent variety of monsters that have resistances as well as weaknesses. It would also be intriguing to have different ammunition that has different mechanics for example, an explosive arrow has an AOE, a poison arrow does damage over time, and a frost arrow slows the target. Another important aspect is it shouldn't be allowed to switch ammunition in combat or better yet require a long cooldown, that way damage classes aren't overpowered. I would suggest that the different ammunitions would require higher levels to create and maybe even have special recipes that are hard to obtain. Thus, not giving the entry-level crafter the ability to craft specialized ammunition as this would flood the market and take away from specialized crafters ability to gain much-needed funds.

    • 21 posts
    November 23, 2018 1:24 PM PST

    Different ammo types for different situations.  I wouldn't put any restrictions on it, as far as ammo swapping that seems needlessly restrictive.  High skilled fletchers being able to provide top tier ammo seems like a super cool idea.

    • 1691 posts
    November 23, 2018 2:02 PM PST

    I like the idea of fletching, arrow crafting, specific arrows for specific situation.

     

    The downside is that in MMO's we consume a very large amount of ammunitions. In a real life bow situation, you wouldn't shoot an arrow per second, or not for a sustained amount of time. But MMo's fights are long, and battle time can be hours of shooting, and the consumption or arrows become unrealistic.

     

    I don't think having a quiver of 1000 arrows for a game session brings anything to the table, I don't either think that shooting withouth consuming arrows is realistic enough to be worth it.

     

    In that design, I really don't see how to balance the situation, a low level will probably have one ability consuming arrows plus his auto attack, and a high level will cycle throught four or five abilities shooting arrows plus his auto and a possible haste buff / item, which means a tremendously higher ammo consumption.

     

    -Should quivers be filled in a "vague" full to empty percentage, making arrows and quivers a disconnected mechanic from reality ?

    -Should arrows only be consumed by auto attacks, leading to an unrealistic approach ?

    -Should arrows be partially recovered from corpses, making long fights a necessity to carry thousands of arrows before recovering some ?

    -Should every shot attempt to save the quiver, the higher the level the more chances, making arrows not even disappear when rolled right and supplies less and less relevant with level ?

     

    There are a lot of approachs here, but none really digs me, having all flaws and flavours.

    • 21 posts
    November 24, 2018 1:25 AM PST

    MauvaisOeil said:

    I like the idea of fletching, arrow crafting, specific arrows for specific situation.

     

    The downside is that in MMO's we consume a very large amount of ammunitions. In a real life bow situation, you wouldn't shoot an arrow per second, or not for a sustained amount of time. But MMo's fights are long, and battle time can be hours of shooting, and the consumption or arrows become unrealistic.

     

    I don't think having a quiver of 1000 arrows for a game session brings anything to the table, I don't either think that shooting withouth consuming arrows is realistic enough to be worth it.

     

    In that design, I really don't see how to balance the situation, a low level will probably have one ability consuming arrows plus his auto attack, and a high level will cycle throught four or five abilities shooting arrows plus his auto and a possible haste buff / item, which means a tremendously higher ammo consumption.

     

    -Should quivers be filled in a "vague" full to empty percentage, making arrows and quivers a disconnected mechanic from reality ?

    -Should arrows only be consumed by auto attacks, leading to an unrealistic approach ?

    -Should arrows be partially recovered from corpses, making long fights a necessity to carry thousands of arrows before recovering some ?

    -Should every shot attempt to save the quiver, the higher the level the more chances, making arrows not even disappear when rolled right and supplies less and less relevant with level ?

     

    There are a lot of approachs here, but none really digs me, having all flaws and flavours.

    Its all about how you handle it. Stacks of ammo can be as big as you like or as small.  If they chose to go with no ammo count you could just have a craftable "ammo" that is applied to your auto attack "ammo" that's good for 300, 500, 1000 shots.  I played a hunter back in the early days of WoW and having to carry and buy ammo did not really bother me.  The quiver was a different bag and they were stacks of 200.  You could carry 1000s of rounds.

    • 7 posts
    November 24, 2018 10:49 PM PST

    Cost per use seems like a handy knob for game tuning, but what's special about archery?

    To generalize the idea, you'd need mechanics for spell components, and weapon durability (i.e., "sword juice"). While I think that I'd like this, I suspect that mine would be a minority opinion.