Not a fan of item degradation in any game, to be honest. Always seems like it's just a money sink slapped on to delay progress (and keep us clocking more game time), rather than a mechanic imposed for immersion and fun.
That being said though, I somewhat like the idea behind it in this game (only because players can repair), but it needs tweaking (which we're already seeing in patches, thankfully). Like Azurymber said, we really need a better way to pinpoint exactly what is damaged, without having to check our items 1 at a time...that's way too tedious. NPC's also need a "repair all" function, not just "repair all equipped," as the debuff icon remains until everything you have in inventory is fully repaired. And of course...the debuff description itself needs to be localized for some (As my ability to quickly read hiragana/kanji have dwindled tremendously, though I appreciate the practice, SE).
Also, somebody else in either this, or another forum mentioned an interesting idea. Instead of the npc repairing to 50% as they do now, let them repair to full (minimizing having to visit them so much), and allow players to repair, or rather, "improve" items passed 100% (Possibly increasing item stats a percent or two). That way, there will still be a market for player-repairs, as field-repairs are very convenient, and there will always be players that want that extra edge (especially end-game). Then, for those times you just want to farm or can't justify/afford going above 100%, you can just visit and npc instead. I thought it was an interesting approach, and it could hold some merit with proper balance.
Either way, it needs more work, as has been mentioned. Though I imagine this particular system will take time to perfect, as server populations and gaming habits will need to stabilize for them to see just how much, if any, the prices/repair amounts & items need to be further modified. They've already made an adjustment to the pricing, but hopefully they adjust the degradation time as well, as I think it is just too fast at present.
Edited, Sep 8th 2010 2:12pm by Giblos
Normal mobs: The new "NM."
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