As much as I like that they've tried to maintain the crafting minigame, I'm disappointed that it's still such a shallow game. It has all the depth of an old-school RPG where you only have one party member and they have only a few abilities... I've been saying they could transplant basic RPG mechanics to crafting quite easily for years, so I guess it's a case of being careful what you wish for. You've got your HP (Durability), the monster's HP (Progress), and an overkill mechanic (Quality). No stats, no status effects... less depth than a battle in FF1.
If you're going to do a game, make it a real game. You've got to come up with something at least a level up from Blackjack (another example of what this essentially is), otherwise it's just that much more of a chore. Crafting would be easy to turn into a legitimate game of strategy, or even just something that pretended to require a little strategy.
Having said that, it could be passable if the game market is good. It's at least a little more engaging than "Press Button, Get Bacon," so as long as there's a good incentive to do it, it could end up being very much like crafting in FFXI--boring, but meaningful. I'm also expecting that you at least get several more abilities that require actual decision-making as you level up.
Oh, I see. They saved the "Press Button, Get Bacon" formula for gathering -_-
Now it's easy to do like Kane did and just dumb this down to "Oh, so you want that thing? Sure, take it!", and I know they're just being snarky for fun's sake (I hope?), but there's more to it. Breaking it down, you effectively have so many chances to gather before a tree, an ore vein, or whatever runs out of chances. Do you want to go for that low-percentage but high-reward yield Adamantium Ore that only has maybe a 20% chance of success? Or do you want to play it safe and mine out some 90% possible Copper Ore instead, maybe just sell a bunch of it so you can buy the other materials you may want?
Unfortunately, there's really NOT much more to it. Multiply the market rate of the item times the chance that you'll get any given item, and that's really about it. If, in your example, Adamantium goes for 1000gil and Copper goes for 100, then the average return for choosing Adamantium will be 200gil, and Copper will be 90 gil. I hardly call that a decision, let alone strategy. There will almost always be a "right" item to get, making the chance element essentially worthless. What was once a crappy game of luck with the most minimal splash of skill has been turned into ordering off a menu in a restaurant with a unreliable service. They've added arithmetic to gathering. Well done.
This is really the same deal as crafting to me. It doesn't HAVE to be a well-designed game. It's lazy but viable to make gathering nodes a slot machine. People find elements of chance engaging even without any required application of skill.
Sorry to be such a negative Nidhogg, really. As always I'm just trying to call attention to the things the average player off the street won't find especially fun. Edited, Dec 13th 2012 12:42am by Kachi
Ok, now we're going to get slash fiction of Wint x Kachi somehere... rule 34 and all...
Never confuse your inference as the listener for an implication of the speaker.
Good games are subjective like good food is subjective. You're not going to seriously tell me that there's not a psychological basis for why pizza is great and lutefisk is revolting. The thing about subjectivity is that, as subjects go, humans actually have a great deal in common.