Guild Wars 2 Crafting Stuff Revealed!

By Jim Rossignol on March 9th, 2011 at 2:26 pm.


Okay, so crafting possibly isn’t the most exciting thing about the spectacular upcoming MMO, Guild Wars 2, but it certainly is a thing about it, and ArenaNet have chosen to reveal it today. There will be crafting, and there will be eight disciplines: Weaponsmith (making melee weapons), Huntsman (crafting bows and pistol, as well as torches and warhorns), Artificer (for the fashioning of magical weapons such as staves and scepters), Armorsmith (for heavy armour), Leatherworker (for medium armour), Tailor (for light armour), Jewelcrafter (for rings and necklaces), Cook (for buff-inducing foods). Most of these professions will also be able to upgrade existing items. Characters can choose two of these disciplines at any one time, and these can be changed back and forth, retaining skill level’s acquired, for a cost.

More information, and a quick chat with game designer Andrew McLeod, lie below.

As you might expect, crafting takes place at crafting stations around the world, in various towns and settlements. You’ll also need to harvest materials and loot gubbins to get the things required for your crafting recipes, which will include exploring to find plants and veins of minerals across the landscape. Interestingly, you don’t need the related skills to gather these resources (anyone can do it) and the resource isn’t “used up” for other players, so everyone can get their share.

Advancing through crafting requires both persistence – because making stuff levels you up within the profession system – and lots of time spent in the world. Recipes will be discovered as you play, with the most basic being supplied by NPCs, and the rarest turning up in the form of high-level drops. (Although drops aren’t, apparently, going to be farmable in the same way that they are in, say, WoW, being sort of reward-based for participation in certain events, instead.)

Anyway, we had a quick word with designer Andrew McLeod to see what else he could tell us about the crafting system:

RPS: Can you tell us a bit about the range and scarcity of recipes? How wide is the selection of items that can be crafted, and how many of those will be extremely rare items?

McLeod: We have a large number of potential recipes, with more and higher-quality recipes being discoverable at higher levels of crafting. The levels of crafted weapons and armors are set up so that you should be able to craft yourself new gear before your previous gear is obsolete. We do plan on having various rare recipes which can be discovered through the discovery system, as well as rare recipes that can be found in harder content like dungeons.


RPS: What about player trade? Can you tell us anything about how that will work in Guild Wars 2? And is crafting more focused on items you will make for yourself, or on production and sale of those items?

Andrew McLeod: Players should be able to level up crafting disciplines through crafting equipment and upgrades that they would use themselves. It isn’t our intention for players to have to craft a lot of throwaway items in order to level their crafting. By not requiring players to craft large amounts of excess items in order to gain skill in their crafting professions, players that enjoy crafting should be able to carve out their own corner of the player market easier without having to compete with a glut of items created by players simply trying to level their disciplines.

RPS: Will players who don’t take the time to engage in crafting feel left out? Or – perhaps more fairly – what are main benefits that spending time crafting will provide for the players who engage in it?

McLeod: Our crafting system is not intended to provide exclusive rewards to crafters- if a player does not have the time or inclination to craft, they can have a friend or guild member craft for them, or can purchase the desired items from other players. It isn’t our intent to add rewards to try and get every player to craft, regardless of whether or not they actually want to. However, crafters should be able to fairly easily keep themselves outfitted in good gear.

RPS: Thanks for your time!

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58 Comments »

  1. Longrat says:

    No offence GW2, but this sounds EXACTLY Like WoW.
    I don’t mind though, I guess this is one aspect in WoW which was sort of tolerable.

    • applecup says:

      Except without nearly as much grind. Frankly, I rather like the sound of this.

    • Wulf says:

      Also, there can be no fighting for resource nodes, since nodes are instanced to a specific player, not to the server. So if two people run for a node, both get it.

      That’s one very important thing that’s different to WoW, and thank goodness for that.

    • Longrat says:

      “No more grind”
      I’ll believe it when I see it.

    • Mungrul says:

      Have you played the original Guild Wars Longrat?
      It wasn’t until I started playing DC Universe Online recently that it really clicked just how absent grind is from Guild Wars.
      DCUO is considered by the MMO community to be a “Casual” game, yet to get the gear needed to raid requires hours of grinding instances over and over.
      In Guild Wars, top level gear is easily accessible to all players; the only grind that exists is for the acquisition of more aesthetically pleasing gear.
      If they say there’s no grind in Guild Wars 2, I for one believe them.

    • Malawi Frontier Guard says:

      @Mungrul

      Why do you say absent when you mean optional?

    • Gnoupi says:

      What was nice indeed in GW1 is that there was close to no difference between the normal cheap top armor, and the “lot of ressources” one. It was indeed only a matter of aesthetics.

      From what I see in this interview, I’m a bit worried by “Our crafting system is not intended to provide exclusive rewards to crafters- if a player does not have the time or inclination to craft, they can have a friend or guild member craft for them, or can purchase the desired items from other players.”

      It sounds like “sure, no need to craft, but then you will have to find someone to do it for you”. So apparently the crafted elements will have a gameplay advantage on the other ones, unlike GW1.

    • Mungrul says:

      @Malawi Frontier Guard:
      A quick post not overly concerned with semantics, especially considering that the message was clear enough.
      Now why feel the need to be pedantic?

    • Sna7ch says:

      Why do people always have to mention WoW in every MMO post, thread or news?
      Why do people always compare every new MMO to WoW but don’t compare WoW with previous MMO’s?

      WoW = “The game was released on November 23, 2004″

      Ridiculous…

    • Dolphan says:

      Sna7ch – Are you being serious? I’d have thought the reason why people tend to mention WOW would be pretty damn obvious …

    • qeloqoo says:

      @Wulf No fighting for resource nodes is actually sad thing… One less PvP objective = one step closer to Carebear land.

    • Chris D says:

      Surely if you’re engaging in PvP it should be because you want to, not because you have to.

    • Wulf says:

      @Malawi

      I think he meant that grind is absent in the parts that you actually play as par the course of normal gameplay. This is entirely factual and true, indisputably so. Now what you’re saying is that there is optional grind available which has nothing to do with the main gameplay at all, it’s sort of like how one can go and grind through a dungeon or three in Oblivion if they want, and there are rewards for doing so, but it has nothing to do with the main quests or the sidequests. This is also completely true. So both you and he are correct, and therefore this comes down to semantics and clarification was required, clarification which I believe I’ve just offered.

      @qeloqoo

      Chris D has this covered – and removing unnecessary stress caused by griefers and trolls in PvE environments is ‘carebear land’ and thus a bad thing, now? I must not have gotten that memo.

    • Wulf says:

      @Gnoupi

      There are four sets of armour reward groups:

      - By completing open world dynamic events, you get access to sets of armour.
      - By completing five man dungeons, you get access to sets of armour.
      - By completing personal story missions, you get access to sets of armour.
      - By pursuing crafting trees and resources, you get access to sets of armour.

      They’ve said that the differentiation between the four is going to be aesthetic only, so when they talk about having friends making them or buying them, they’re talking about doing so for the aesthetics. Much the same as in Guild Wars 1, you could gather resources for the aesthetic armour bits yourself, you could buy them, or you could get them off a friend.

      Nothing has changed here between GW1 and GW2, I think there’s some paranoia and reading between the lines going on here, versus what they’ve told us.

    • Koozer says:

      I love killing the opposite faction and taking their nodes. I hate killing a mob right next to a node and someone my own faction taking it from under me. Therefore nodes should be instanced to the player, and the opposite faction!

    • Eolirin says:

      @Koozer, there is no “opposite faction” in GW2′s PvE areas. That is not how the game works. Open world PVP is in a completely separate map from the PvE zones. I also highly doubt we’ll be seeing PVP servers, given the way that PVP is going to work. It’d be redundant and mess with their pve intentions too much.

    • Tarqon says:

      Wulf, keep in mind that in guild wars 2 gear will have stats so it seems likely that it will be more differentiated than on looks alone.
      http://www.arena.net/blog/pax-east-preview-izzy-on-attributes-and-iteration

    • Chalky says:

      @qeloqoo: There is no open PvP in this game so it would be impossible for resource nodes to be PvP objectives.

    • qeloqoo says:

      @Chalky:
      Ah, thanks for clarifying that. My interest in GW2 suddenly dropped to -100…

  2. Scatterbrainpaul says:

    I was hoping for blueprints rather than crafting

  3. suibhne says:

    Same screenshot twice?
    Also – I know it’s an RPS quirk that we all get used to, kind of like the slightly clammy hands on the partner you otherwise love, but it would be awfully nice if those pretty screenshots could be magnified. This would be especially helpful on interface screens like this; it’s hard to distinguish the finer points of what’s going on there.

    • Dominic White says:

      Crafting is something a lot of players like to really get their teeth into, so it makes sense so include it. It’s totally not my thing, personally, so I’ll likely skip it.
      I did read one interesting thing: The maximum party size is 5, and all Personal Story quests (which happen in your own instanced world) are designed for 1-5 players. Out in the field, partying is completely optional, and you can cooperate just by jumping in and helping out.

      I really hope it works out as they’ve planned. An MMO where you can cooperate with players en-masse without sitting around with an ‘LFG’ sign up would be a huge step forward for the genre.

    • Blaq says:

      @Dominic White: Do words like public quests, rifts, open groups, public groups, dungeon finder mean anything to you? Sitting around shouting LFG is a thing of the past, any new MMO that doesn’t incorporate the above mentioned features is considered archaic.

      For example one of Rift’s biggest flaws is considered to be an absence of an automatic LFG system. Playerbase is crying for one and I’m sure they’ll get it.

      It would be extremely stupid for ArenaNet not to implement one.

    • Koozer says:

      I hate WoW’s dungeon finder. Give Rift a LFG channel, or its own UI screen, but please for the love of god don’t make it an auto-search auto-join auto-enter system.

  4. fearian says:

    ‘Crafting’ in guild wars was perhaps the most half arsed grindy bit of the game. Nice to see they are treating it seriously!

    Some exciting screenshots guys ;)

  5. Recidivist says:

    Sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet!

  6. Dajs says:

    I don’t think any developer would in their right mind make a grindy crafting system, as it’s been done to death over and over, especially in Korean MMO’s where fabrication of a decent sword requires strip-mining a mountain range. God forbid if there is a chance of failure, then you have to gather it all over again.

    Less grind, more fun, I guess guys at ArenaNet are pretty spot-on with GW2 on that.

    • Kdansky says:

      I want to point out Aion: The crafting table, crafting quest gives (“Make me 10 items.”), and crafting resource seller were adjacent to each other. You click on each, and spend a lot of money, wait for bars to finish, hope for lucky skill ups, and repeat. In essence, It is a loading screen which costs money.

      How would anyone in their right mind do that? Digging a hole in my garden and filling it again ad infinitum is less boring!

      That said, GW’s crafting looks very WoW-ish, and uninteresting. Can we have something more challenging please? I’d like some sort of minigame that results in your crafts, but which is played versus other (anonymous) players, and plays more like MTG, where your skill (you don’t have crafting: 5, but rather a checklist of possible skills) becomes your card selection. Now that would be awesome!

    • Dajs says:

      Ah, it reminds me of that flash game, I forgot the name… The one where you are a god, and you have the basic four elements, and you combine them and make new ones, which then can be combined again and again, discovering new elements… something like that could be used for a crafting minigame!

    • pakoito says:

      Doodle God/Doodle Demon

  7. sonofsanta says:

    Yeah, I was all for representative screenshots in the post the other day, but seeing them now, I’d rather have some completely unrealistic shot of someone forging a hammer in the fiery heart of the Sun, or something.

  8. sasayan says:

    Information about tailoring in GW2? This thread is relevant to my interests.

    I hope there are plenty of decorative items of clothing to produce.

    • Small Ivory Knight says:

      >Tailoring
      >Thread

      I see what you did thar.

    • Eolirin says:

      Whether town clothing falls under tailoring or not is unclear. We do know that they’re planning a decent amount of decorative clothing that goes over your armor like costumes do in GW1. It’s not clear how you *get* that stuff though.

      Certainly, if town clothing is heavily tied to tailoring, it’s going to make it much more diverse than the other armor professions.

  9. Gildon says:

    The more they reveal, the more I see how GW2 strays away from everything that I love in GW1. I’ve always found crafting to be an unnecessary money/time sink in MMOs. It’s another form of grind that is anything but fun.

    They say crafting is entirely optional, but is it really?

    “if a player does not have the time or inclination to craft, they can have a friend or guild member craft for them, or can purchase the desired items from other players.”

    So in other words, if you hope to be somewhat wealthy in the game, you HAVE to craft. Having someone else do it for you doesn’t make it optional…

    They’re also saying anyone can have a bite in the economy because leveling up your crafting profession is accessible. Wouldn’t that do the opposite? Things would just lose value very quickly and only the highest-level crafted items will be worth anything.

    I honestly don’t understand the decision; I’ve been playing Guild Wars on and off since it came out and I never felt like there wasn’t enough to do that I needed a crafting system.

    • Gnoupi says:

      I should have scrolled down before posting nearly the same thing. I’m also worried that such direction will force people to craft, or to find a crafter, or they will be weaker compared to others.

    • Mr Labbes says:

      GW1 already had a crafting system, and they didn’t say that in GW2, crafting players would have better equipment.
      In GW1, players with the most expensive armor had no advantage over me, or any other player. So who cares? If someone wants to grind, let them. Making it optional (i.e. the same as in GW1) is a good thing, no?

    • Gnoupi says:

      It’s a good thing, yes, but from this interview, it’s rather going in the direction that crafted items are more like other MMOs, in the meaning that they have an advantage over “regular” ones. When they say that people who don’t want to craft can still find a crafter in their guild to not be left out, it sounds more in this direction.

      So yes, we hope it will indeed be optional, and that you can actually have a decent armor without having to run after a crafter.

    • Gildon says:

      Yes. It doesn’t at all sound from this interview like crafted items are only going to be aesthetically different. Assuming so, you’re given the choice between facing a grindy crafting system (again, seemingly), and spending a lot of money.

    • Wulf says:

      Since this is just a repeat of above… :P

      There are four sets of armour reward groups:

      - By completing open world dynamic events, you get access to sets of armour.
      - By completing five man dungeons, you get access to sets of armour.
      - By completing personal story missions, you get access to sets of armour.
      - By pursuing crafting trees and resources, you get access to sets of armour.

      They’ve said that the differentiation between the four is going to be aesthetic only, so when they talk about having friends making them or buying them, they’re talking about doing so for the aesthetics. Much the same as in Guild Wars 1, you could gather resources for the aesthetic armour bits yourself, you could buy them, or you could get them off a friend.

      Nothing has changed here between GW1 and GW2, I think there’s some paranoia and reading between the lines going on here, versus what they’ve told us.

      I will add to this: You are not compelled to follow all four. You could just follow mostly one and get all the armour you need to jump into the other two at any point. So if you’re only doing dynamic quests, you’ll be geared and ready to do five-mans which offer the same stats but prettier. ArenaNet has told us such in many pasts interviews. It’s something they’ve gone over and over, but it bears repeating.

    • arccos says:

      It sounds like they’re just trying to make crafting not a money and time sink.

      Player A spends 2 hours questing and 1 hour crafting, ending up with 100g and some gear.

      Player B spends 3 hours questing and 0 hours crafting, ending up with 150g and some resources.

      To me, that makes the gear worth 50g plus resources. Why shouldn’t you have to buy it if you don’t want to make it? I don’t play raids or PvP much in MMOs, but I don’t begrudge raid-specific drops or PvP rewards.

      People should be rewarded for playing the game. Its more fun if the rewards are unique (but obtainable through the market), and essentially of the same value, for each play style.

    • Gildon says:

      Thanks for your reply Wulf. I must have missed that information. Do you have a link?

    • Eolirin says:

      http://www.pcgamer.com/2010/10/19/guild-wars-2-exclusive-dungeon-reveals/

      “So while the dungeon sets will look awesome—since each dungeon offers a matching set of gear for each armor type that’s themed to that particular dungeon—the stats will be equivalent of those on equal-level gear earned via other methods in the game, such as world events, personal story, PvP and mini-games.” The implication here is that crafting will be no different if this is how raids work. I feel that is a fairly safe assumption to make.

    • FunkyBadger3 says:

      if you hope to be somewhat wealthy in the game

      Are people really concerned about issues like the above?

  10. Mungrul says:

    This is all making me come back to one of the original features they announced; that there would be no level cap so to speak, and that people could continue levelling continuously. Taking that character into PvP however would result in a maximum level being applied.
    Is this still the case?
    To be honest, I thought that the low level cap was one of the better things about Guild Wars, as the majority of content could then be considered what other games termed “End-game”.

    Edit: Apparently it’s not that there’s now no level cap, they’ve simply raised it to 80.

  11. Lu-Tze says:

    Gee, I can craft single items that people will buy and then never break, or I can engage in the lucrative industry of supplying consumables, with guaranteed repeat custom. Whichever will I choose.

    You split up consumable crafting and equipment crafting you mad fools!

    • Eolirin says:

      Given that the really important thing in terms of consumables doesn’t seem to be craftable – the mana potion – I wouldn’t be too concerned about that. Food buffs would have to be pretty necessary in order to provide a significant market and I’m kind of suspecting that they won’t be. Also, given what we’ve seen in previous demos, food is sold by npc vendors, so there’s going to be a maximum cap on prices if there isn’t anything significantly unique in the cooking profession. Unique armor skins on the other hand are likely to run significant amounts of money, even if they don’t wear out. As long as there’s a constant stream of new characters, demand doesn’t go away in large scale environments.

      Especially given that with the discovery system, it could be possible for someone to have a functional monopoly on a particular equipment skin for a decent amount of time, something that could prove very very lucrative. This will taper off as time goes on – a mature server is going to have fewer opportunities – but if they add new crafting recipes regularly, they could keep things going.

    • FriendlyFire says:

      And if you bothered reading the blog, you would have noted that while you can only have two professions at any given time, you CAN switch between all of them through NPC vendors, thus you could easily craft your own stuff first and then go for cooking and switch around as required/desired.

  12. Ian says:

    What sort of stuff could you craft in GW aside from gear? That sounds like they’re saying nothing you make in crafting will be whatever GW called Bind on Pickup, which in WoW it is the fun stuff (gadgets, mounts, etc.) rather than gear I really bother crafting for at all. If I could just buy it I’d take gathering-only stuff and sell on for gold so I could afford anything fancy I wanted.

    I think if everything was sellable I wouldn’t be bothered with crafting stuff for myself. Gathering of materials and clicking “make this” isn’t exactly a hoot.

  13. Reapy says:

    I don’t know that I’ve ever liked crafting in games. I have done it, and enjoyed the rewards from it I guess, but overall I’ve always found crafting a headache. I never crafted in EQ2 and I know they put some effort into making it exciting there, but on the whole I’ve never liked crafting in a game.

    It always ends up being tedious in some capacity, and frequently doesn’t yield interesting rewards. I guess its like, when you craft something in real life, you generally design and create something of your own, but in a game what you do is look through a list of in item games, then look for a list of materials, then look for where you have to run around the game to find stuff, picking up about half of what you need till you hit that one item that you just noticed now is reaaaaaly hard to get.

    I guess in the way that fetch quests are boring, so is the inventory combine system called ‘crafting’ that all these games have. I guess they would get crucified for not having it, but honestly, if I never saw another crafting system in a game again I wouldn’t be unhappy.

    • Wulf says:

      Well, you don’t have to craft! You can just get your equipment from one of the other three paths! Those being dynamic events, personal story missions, and five man dungeons.

  14. FunkyBadger3 says:

    Apropos of nothing really, but I got Guild Wars (Nightfall I think) after the latest RPS spasm about GW2 and gave a it a go. I’m probably doing it wrong, but it struck as a very meh 3PS version of Diablo. What’s all the fuss aboot?

    • Cronstintein says:

      I never liked the PvE in GW1 but the 4v4 random arena is hella fun. It’ll be harder for you now as you don’t have a lot of skills (in game and RL experience) and everyone else playing is probably at least pretty decent. When it was new everyone was trying ridiculous builds and you never knew what you would be facing. Now-a-days it’s a little less compelling now that most people are running wiki-builds.

  15. sendmark says:

    Sounds like quite a few people are still hung up on WoW-style mmos and don’t understand how Anet do things differently. Not having a subscription frees them up a lot, and GW1 showed they know how to let people craft without having it affect gameplay. Nice that they’ve added more depth and variety to the crafting, a lot of people will really get into that.

  16. Robert says:

    I am still waiting for the promised revolution of MMO’s.

  17. Nick says:

    I’m confused by people saying GW1 had crafting. It bloody well didn’t, it had purchasing stuff off vendors for materials and money.. the vendors were the ones who ‘crafted’ it.

  18. Cronstintein says:

    For you worried about money: Crafting is usually a money-sink.

    1) The materials you use to make crappy equipment are worth more on the market selling to people trying to level their crafting.
    2) The time you waste seeking out materials and crafting is more profitably used doing events + questing. Your leveling is also slowed.

    So I would say only do crafting if you really want to, don’t feel like you need to.

    I might try it out for a bit. But if I start to outlevel my gear (ie: I pick up better stuff than I’m crafting) then I’ll probably just drop it. 5 items per level is all you need to reach 400@80 which doesn’t sound so bad, but we’ll have to wait and see.

  19. mda says:

    “Well, you don’t have to craft! You can just get your equipment from one of the other three paths! Those being dynamic events, personal story missions, and five man dungeons.”
    Whew. All those other things sound fun to me. Probably mostly five man dungeons and dynamic events :D