I absolutely hate the crafting changes since LU24. I speak from a long time crafter, I’ve had one of every class, and it has nothing really to do with the fact that there are now a bazillion other crafters out there (thanks soe), but mostly because it takes a lot more raws and a lot longer to get anywhere and feel as though you’re making any progress. I get about 2% crafting exp a combine, for something that I’ve already crafted before (little difficult to work that first time pristine bonus when you only get 4 recipes a level), with vitality. I can’t even begin to imagine the amount of raws and fuel it would take to get a whole level without vitality. It’s just simply not worth it at all.
There are some out there who hate the crafting changes specifically because it is now much easier for the ‘average’ crafter to level up. It requires little to no effort besides gathering raws and paying for fuel. There are no sub combines to level off of any more, no tedious except for the grinding of the buttons, and instant gratification in your end product instead of having to make 3-6 other little items before you saw it. As a result the market is absolutely flooded with crafted items, and there’s fierce competition to get anything you make sold. Not to mention they’ve lowered the stats on just about all items / weapons / gear and unless it’s mastercrafted (rare), you’ll never get your money’s worth out of it in most cases. There are always exceptions.
And yet, it’s still not the reason why I hate the changes. I take little to no pride in the crafting process now. It’s become boring and with so few recipes a level it becomes pointless. At least I could always gather a few levels making sub components before. Now, I know a few crafters are also very glad of the changes. It means when a guild mate asks for a full set of level 20 gear, and you’re level 70 crafter, no longer are you spending an hour making sub components for a set of gear that you can’t even get any experience off of. So the process is much faster. However, I’d have rather seen it go this way instead:
Sub components re-implimented such as they were before– however, when a recipe no longer gives any experience due to it’s level (or when you hit level 70) it turns grey, and the recipe no longer uses sub components (but they can still be substituted such as they can be right now if you’ve had left over components). Removing the tedium of crafting level 20 gear at level 70, and making it faster, but also still allowing those people who use sub components as a method of gaining experience to do so. Sure, it wouldn’t please everyone, but in my ideal world that’s how the crafting would work in EQ2.
Will I give up crafting due to the Live Update24? Probably not. I admit now, I’m pretty addicted. I re-activated my station access account so I can create 10 characters (I actually did this because I was missing some expansion packs and didn’t feel like purchasing each one for $7.99 American when I could just pay the $24.99 and gain access to all again), and have a wide variety of crafters. It gives me something to do when I’m bored, not to mention the rare gear / jewelery etc are still nice upgrades, and they do still sell well. I can get on average 30-1p a day from rare T3 crafted items. I realize you can get a lot more with simple adventuring, and I like that factor as well since I do both, but the option to do one or the other or both is always a nice variety for people. Granted EQ2 does not strike me as a game solely for crafters, there’s not enough to support that, but if you need a break from the adventuring and questing, well, there’s something.