RMMV Fantasy Metals & Crafting Mats

Frostorm

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So in my game, I came up w/ several kinds of metals, some of which are real and others being fictional. They'll be listed in pairs (raw & processed). They are as follows: (the levels refer to their availability)

Lv 1-5
Timber
Lumber

Lv 6-10
Copper Ore
Copper Ingot

Lv 11-15
Tin Ore
Tin Ingot

Lv 16-20
Iron Ore
Iron Ingot

Lv 21-25
Silver Ore
Silver Ingot

Lv 26-30
Gold Ore
Gold Ingot

Lv 31-35
Mithril Ore
Mithril Ingot

Lv 36-40
Titanium Ore
Titanium Ingot

Lv 41-45
Orichalcum Ore
Orichalcum Ingot

Lv 46-50
Adamantite Ore
Adamantite Ingot

Lv 50+
Unobtanium Ore
Unobtanium Ingot

So there's a total of 11, but I was aiming for 10 (Max is Lv50 in my game, so each tier becomes available in ~5 level increments). Therefore, I might get rid of one of these, but which one? I'm leaning towards getting rid of Unobtanium... Either that or I'll make Unobtanium some kind of legendary metal w/ severely limited availability (like 1-3 ores in the entire game) and give it very strong properties.


There are also alloys of the above metals:

Bronze - Copper & Tin
Steel - Iron & Coal
Electrum - Gold & Silver
True Silver - Silver & Mithril
Titan's Gold - Gold & Titanium
Titansteel - Titanium & Steel
Adamanthril - Adamantite & Mithril
Orimantite - Orichalcum & Adamantite
Mithrichalcum - Mithril & Orichalcum
*Tritanium - Titanium + Orichalcum + Adamantite

*May or may not keep this one...

Also, just because each material is separated in availability by 5 level increments, doesn't necessarily mean the lower tier ones becomes obsolete once you get to higher levels since they'll have different properties. This is especially true for Mithril and up since those will have certain properties unique to each metal. Everything from Lumber to Iron would most likely become useless by late game tho.

Just to toss around a few examples:
  • Mithril is lightweight and resistant to magic, so it would grant average DEF but high MDF w/ no Speed penalty. A chain-mail made of Mithril would feel like wearing cloth in terms of weight.
  • Orichalcum is a versatile metal that also happens to be very valuable (more so than gold), but isn't used for coinage due to its rarity. Above average DEF & MDF w/ a slight Speed penalty.
  • Adamantite is heavier but is as hard as diamond while being even tougher than steel. Very high DEF and slightly above average MDF w/ a moderate Speed penalty.
Of course, these materials would only form a base when used in crafting. Other ingredients would often be included in various recipes to create armor/weapons w/ interesting properties, not just low/medium/high stats.

Also, just like in real life, the properties of various alloys are often greater than the sum of its parts. Take Adamanthril for instance; Adamantite and Mithril have very different properties, they are somewhat like opposites in fact. This makes them very complementary when alloyed together, creating a material that is both high in DEF and MDF w/o being too heavy.

I am also working on detailed scientific data on each of these materials, including color, hardness, strength (tensile/yield/shear etc), ductility, conductivity, density, magical affinity, atomic structure*, etc...

*For the fantasy/fictional metals, the neutrons in their atoms would be replaced by various exotic subatomic particles. This is just for lore purposes, but there are 3 kinds so far (no names yet):
  • Mana particle
  • Anti-mana particle
  • Negative mass particle
Thoughts? How do you guys handle crafting materials or multiple tiers of metals in your games? Any feedback is appreciated!

Edit: Formatting. I also wanted to see if anyone had any ideas for how the properties of these metals could be translated into weapons.
 
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NeptuneTron

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I haven't really used crafting systems before, but I'd probably suggest removing unobtanium as well. Personally for me, the name doesn't quite ring true for a fantasy-based world (though I have a strong bias against the name "Unobtanium", so take my opinion with a grain of salt).

However, I'd probably also cut out Titanium for scientific reasons. Titanium oxide, the main source of titanium, is very expensive and difficult to refine, and would require a much more detailed knowledge of chemistry than most fantasy worlds have (for more information, I found this lovely website on the process https://www.chemguide.co.uk/inorganic/extraction/titanium.html). Furthermore, titanium has a melting point of some 1600 C, which is hotter than inside some modern "hot blast furnaces" (invented in 1828, well outside of the range of most fantasy scopes, although perfectly reasonable for steampunk settings). As such, forging any kind of tool with titanium is largely unfeasible without access to post-Industrial Revolution technologies (although perhaps harnessing the power of dragons or some-such might allow for the processing of Titanium). The danger of using real materials in a fantasy setting is that they have predefined properties that are expected to be consistent between our reality and the reality presented to the player, and if the properties don't align, a cursory google search can leave some players disapointed.

Orichalcum also appears to have the same issue as titanium, although, to be perfectly fair, orichalcum has been used ambiguously for millennia. The only real consensus about it is that it's coloured somewhere between gold and bronze. It's history is complicated and messy, but from the gist of it, it seems to generally have been used to indicate a variety of materials that contained blends of both gold and bronze, as well as other materials, and used as a descriptor for a vast number of these alloys, some of which were thought to have mystical properties, others of which were used even for currency. It's actually pretty fascinating, so I'll link the wikipedia page https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orichalcum.

Although Adamantite is derived from the same ancient greek word as "diamond", it's been used as something that's just really, really hard. Although for most of human history, that meant that "adamantite" would also have referred to "diamonds" (especially during the Middle ages), technically, it's a poorly defined term that you could do whatever you want with, because your world can have it's own "adamantite" of sorts, that's even harder than diamond. Of course, the disadvantage is that in terms of metallurgy and chemical properties, "harder" almost always means "more brittle", which can also have pretty significant disadvantages.

Of course, this is all just my opinion, so you're obviously free to discard any and all of this.

However, I will note that the idea of a "material progression" is kind of an arbitrary one to begin with. In reality, there is no miracle material that can be everything for every purpose. More frequently, there are a few materials that are decently good at a lot of things (steel, timber, concrete, etc.) and some materials that are really good at very specific things (ceramics, semiconductors, nonmetals). Often, to get the best results, we have to use multiple materials in tandem with each other for a specific purpose. For instance, perhaps orichalcum or mithril might not hold an edge as well as steel, but they might be more "magically conductive", meaning their use in weapons would amplify the use of magic-based attacks significantly, despite a minor detriment to physical attacks. An ideal sword, then, might have an orichalcum or mithril blade, but then have steel inset for the edges, to optimize both the hard edge of steel and the magical output of the other material. Something to consider, I suppose.

Of course, there's also a vast number of fictional materials with interesting properties to take note of (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fictional_elements,_materials,_isotopes_and_subatomic_particles). A couple notable examples:
  • Bolognium: It's kind of like unobtainium (in that it has no defined properties and is used to explain away whatever you want), except a little less obvious
  • Computronium: a type of programmable matter (imagine if your weapon could run programs to change it's shape; sword.exe, bow.exe, shield.exe, that sort of thing)
  • Wishalloy: Unobtainium, but it's even more impossible (apparently all you need to do to make a SCRAMjet is use your unobtainium to reinforce your wishalloy)
  • Stalinium: Unobtainium, but it's bright red and fights for the motherland, and is found exclusively in Russia
Of course, you always have full license to create your own materials as well. There's plenty of good names that have yet to be used to describe materials.
 

Frostorm

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Yea, I'm definitely going to remove Unobtanium now that I think about it. As for reaching high temperatures in the refining process, you are correct if we're talking about medieval technology. However, magic is commonplace in my game thus high level fire magic could easily be used to reach 1600° C, if not higher. But in regard's to its difficulty of extraction w/o semi-modern knowledge and techniques, I suppose the only method available to the denizens of my game would be to use advanced earth magic to separate the impurities. Luckily, some inhabitants of my world (not common but not rare either) are able to use more than 1 element of magic. I can imagine mastery (or at least affinity) w/ Fire & Earth magic to be ubiquitous among blacksmiths across the land.

I also agree w/ you in terms of a linear material progression system. It simply doesn't make sense. That's why I'm only making the availability of these materials progress linearly (not based on character level, but the aprox level of the area/environment).

For instance, perhaps orichalcum or mithril might not hold an edge as well as steel, but they might be more "magically conductive", meaning their use in weapons would amplify the use of magic-based attacks significantly, despite a minor detriment to physical attacks. An ideal sword, then, might have an orichalcum or mithril blade, but then have steel inset for the edges, to optimize both the hard edge of steel and the magical output of the other material. Something to consider, I suppose.
This is a really cool idea! Most crafting recipes should definitely utilize multiple ingredients of various tiers. Of course, it should make sense logically/conceptually like in your ideal sword example. To take your example further, imagine if said sword utilized an adamantite edge instead! Lol, that would make a totally epic weapon.

P.S. I am totally aware of harder materials often being more brittle. That's why I described Adamantite as being tougher than steel. :p
 
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NeptuneTron

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I also agree w/ you in terms of a linear material progression. It simply doesn't make sense. That's why I'm only making the availability of these materials progress linearly (not based on character level, but the aprox level of the area/environment).
Ah, I think I misunderstood that. I really like that idea! It would probably be easy to work within lore reasons as well; it's hard to get materials that you aren't available in your region, or have specific rules on who's allowed to use them (and how much of it), or tariffs or taxes or whatever it may be.

It's cool to see that you've put a lot of effort into thinking about all this!
 

HumanNinjaToo

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Some people love crafting, some people hate it and ignore it. For some people it depends on the crafting system and the items importance as to whether or not they use it.

You seem to have a lot of different types/tiers of metals, and from the dev standpoint, that seems like a complete nightmare to try and create recipes and balance for all of that. I mean, you've got 10 listed, then all the combinations/alloys, and then the 3 that you haven't fully implemented... :kaodes:

As far as the crafting system in my own project goes, I prefer to keep things simple. I have found myself getting caught up in creation of various types of crafting materials, wanting to make sure all things are included, and sometimes even adding things just because I've found cool looking icons that I wanted to use. At the end of the day though, I had to ask myself: How essential is crafting to the game? Does every piece of equipment need X amount of tiers?

I found that, for myself and my own project, keeping the crafting system small works much better. At first I had plans for nearly every item (except for key items) to be craft-able, for all weapons/armor to have several tiers so that the player could fine tune equipment to their exact play-style, etc. I found this to be tedious as a dev, and I started looking for a work around. I ended up going with an augmentation system in conjunction with crafting. For me, it was far simpler to create all the augment accessories to be used for weapons and armor instead of several instances of similar weapons and armor. Then I used a 3 tier system for the augment pieces and designed my crafting system around only crafting those augment accessories. In the end, this cut down the number of crafting mats and crafting recipes I needed to create exponentially.
 

Frostorm

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Hmm, I guess I felt my crafting system was pretty bare-bones compared to the games I've played, like World of Warcraft for instance. The crafting in WoW has waaaay more tiers/ingredients than I do. Regarding tiers, I don't want there to be many recipes that are simply improved versions of lower tier items. So I'm definitely avoiding multiple instances of similar armor/weapons. Instead, I'm aiming to make all/most of the materials & recipes unique to some degree. But ur right, I'll prolly get rid of the following: (the one's striked out)...

Bronze - Copper & Tin
Steel - Iron & Coal
Electrum - Gold & Silver
True Silver - Silver & Mithril
Titan's Gold - Gold & Titanium
Titansteel - Titanium & Steel
Adamanthril - Adamantite & Mithril
Orimantite - Orichalcum & Adamantite
Mithrichalcum - Mithril & Orichalcum
Tritanium - Titanium + Orichalcum + Adamantite


The reason I kept the top 5 is because these alloys will serve as a way to stay competitive w/ the higher tier metals. I also forgot to mention Artificing (magical crafting) is a major part of my game story/lore-wise, and designed to complement Blacksmithing. I also utilize weapon/armor augments as well, hence the purpose of the Artificer system.

Anyways, is 10 tiers really that much? WoW has close to ~50 tiers lol. But actually when I think about it, I really only have ~3 tiers functionally speaking. For example, a pure melee focused character would aim for Iron -> Steel -> Adamantite since the majority of the other ones wouldn't be ideal for the kind of stats/effects that kind of character is looking for.

Btw, which 3 are you referring to that weren't fully implemented? If you mean the particles, I mentioned that was just for lore. They aren't actually items in the game, but rather just explained in books/texts (like studying chemistry/physics irl!) if the player feels like it. Basically there to add flavor and a way to scientifically explain the presence of magic in general.
 
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NeptuneTron

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It's important to remember that WoW is supposed to be a massive game that players continuously come back to maintained by massive serverbanks and a large dev team, all things that I think are likely currently outside your scope (though what do I know)

It's important to try to balance your ambition with your current ability and resources. There's only so much time, money, and effort you can throw at any given project, and it's easy to forget how much you have to throw when you're first excitedly brainstorming ideas for a game. It's the same trap I always fall into, and I've been working to push against it more recently (though I still plan for the *what if* situation where I find myself with more time, money, and effort to put towards my project).
 

HumanNinjaToo

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@staf00 Please, by no means think that my comments should determine how you proceed with your game. It's just my opinion, and one that's based on my own experience as a solo half-ass game dev. It's just that, for all the years I've been tinkering with RPGM, I've come to realize that it's easy to get overwhelmed with a huge project when the initial steam runs out. At some point, we all lose the excitement we have for our games, and then we have to rely on good work ethic, or else the game may never get finished.

But anyways, I really enjoy huge crafting systems myself, especially when I'm not the one doing the massive dev work :kaophew:

If you're basing what you're doing with crafting on an MMO, then like @NeptuneTron said, you have to take into account there were probably dozens of people working on the skeleton of the system for a very long time before it was initially released. Plus, thousands of hours of dev time over the years to keep it upgraded.

If you are really wanting to create a huge crafting system, then I would suggest putting a lot of planning into how you would like to see it evolve throughout the game, and then work on it in chunks. For instance, come up with something that works really well, but is not too overly complicated or requiring excessive work on your part. Keep it simple. Then finish your game. When your game is done, maybe then go back and add more tiers of crafting and all the other stuff that goes with that. Speaking from experience, it can be depressing to put all your time into a secondary game mechanic only to burn out on the project all together before you actually finish the game. If you finish the game first, you can release it right? Maybe the crafting system isn't fully fleshed out, but people can play your game and complete the story, which is the ultimate goal.
 

Frostorm

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I am by no mean's aiming for a AAA title, just wanted to throw an outlandish example lol. But I've already been in development for a few years (previously on an off) so I can really relate to the burnt out feeling we all go thru. But w/ the whole pandemic going on I'm sure many of us including myself have just been staying home w/ lots time on our hands. Which is why I've resolved myself to finishing my game this time around, even spending $ on it partially as a way to tell myself I can't back out now. XD

Stay safe and happy game making!

Edit: I'm also part of a 3 man team now, but as Project Lead and System Designer, it's my job to work out mechanics such as crafting, among many other things (basically everything except art, music, & story).
 
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Wavelength

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Do you have an idea how aspects like Shear and Density of materials will play into the properties of the equipment you create, or are you at a loss and you're looking for ideas? I find this somewhat fascinating (and I think a perfectly-designed system that uses it could be a load of fun), but I also swoon at the potential for it to become way too complex for players, way too quickly.

At a higher level, do you have a specific idea of how combining different materials will determine the equipment they create? With 20 different materials (pure metals + alloys), there are 400 different ways to combine just two materials, and if you're going to have 400 combinations of weapons, 400 headgears, etc., you're going to overload your game. Combining three materials would mean thousands of combinations. Unless you're going to ask for specific recipes in specific quantities (at which point I wonder what the point of creating these alloys are), you would need some system which can total and "weight" different properties against each other to determine the item you create and its stats.

I guess the best question I can ask you is: What are you hoping to get out of your Crafting and Smelting (processing) systems? What feeling or dynamic do you want them to add to the game, that couldn't be achieved as well without them? (What would you be missing, for example, by simply awarding money rather than metals, and then having a large selection of gear with different stats and other properties available at shops?) With a clear answer to that in mind, it might be possible to figure out how your system might work - which complexities you should double down on, and which ones you should leave out.

Remember that World of Warcraft has very, very different types of core engagement than most single-player JRPGs do. WoW wants you to spend hundreds to thousands of hours exploring its world and finding new things; it wants you to grind for very long periods of time; it wants to force you to work with other players of different specializations to make the top-level stuff; it wants you to feel like showing off your amazing gear with amazing stats and prestige skins to other players in the world is the coolest thing. To that end, WoW's endless chain of upgrading materials, finding recipes, combining items, and finally crafting (and then enchanting) top-level stuff out of a pool of thousands of possible equips achieves the kind of engagement that WoW wants to provide. But if your game is operating on other types of core engagement - such as offering a compelling story that the player can take in without grinding too much, tightly-balanced battles, creative expression, and/or an exciting, harrowing pace, then even though you might be able to create a super-deep crafting system with a wide universe of possible items provided you spend thousands of hours creating it... you have to ask yourself whether you are actually doing a service to your game by adding it to your game.
 

Frostorm

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I have some ideas, but it's by no means fully fleshed out yet:
  • Density would be directly correlated to weight as denser materials tend to be heavier and vise versa. Take the earlier Mithril vs Adamantite example for instance.
  • Shear strength would affect the material's element rate against Slash damage.
  • Tensile strength would affect the material's element rate against Pierce damage.
  • Compressive strength would affect the material's element rate against Blunt damage.
The point made against the amount of possible combinations is a valid one. This is why I pruned some of it and got rid of the last 5 alloys. Those were redundant anyway if a recipe calls for different metals. I just liked the names lol.

Of course, some of these materials would have unique properties as well. Like in many works of fantasy/fiction Silver would be more effective against undead type enemies. Or I may give it elemental resistance against Shadow damage. In a similar vein, I could make Gold strong/resistant against Holy damage. I would probably keep the sub-lv20 materials pretty plain tho, since players are more or less just starting out, unless I can think of something cool for Copper/Tin/Bronze.

Edit: I found a post on another forum where someone used Wolverine's weight pre/post Adamantium skeleton to calculate the density of the metal.
Very rough figures here:

Wolverine's weight: (without adamantium skeleton) 200 lbs., (with adamantium skeleton) 300 lbs. link

So adamantium skeleton weighs about 100lbs (45.36 kg)

An average skeleton's volume is about 6"3 (9.832 m3) link

45.36 kg / 9.832 m3 = 4.6135 kg/m3
That's surprisingly less dense than I imagined, especially compared to Iron's 7.874 g/cm³.
Then again, their use of the figure for avg skeletal volume is misleading since bones are porous to facilitate blood vessels and the bone marrow's creation of blood cells.

So yea, should I just make up a figure for my game? Or what could I base it on scientifically as to be logically sound?

Edit2: I made a world anvil page for Mithril!
 
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Pootscooter

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Whoa! U put so much thought and detail into this. I'm gonna have to copy some of this if you don't mind... I actually want to create a game where crafting is the main point/theme of the game, or does that sound boring?
 

Frostorm

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Can anyone think of any properties I could give Gold?

I also decided to remove Titanium after all, but in its place I added a metal called "Ghosteel", which deals Shadow damage if used in a weapon. So it's kinda opposite to Silver, which deals Holy damage (strong against undead).

Btw, does it make more sense for Silver to be resistant to Holy or Shadow, i.e. its own element or its opposite?
 

cthulhusquid

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I normally don't have crafting systems, since they are so much work, difficult to balance, and you have to make sure the player actually uses them. Besides that, I also have a minor suggestion. In the first tier, you can add obsidian. Obsidian was used for arrowheads, bladed weapons, and tools before copper or bronze was used.
 

Frostorm

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I normally don't have crafting systems, since they are so much work, difficult to balance, and you have to make sure the player actually uses them. Besides that, I also have a minor suggestion. In the first tier, you can add obsidian. Obsidian was used for arrowheads, bladed weapons, and tools before copper or bronze was used.
That's a great idea, thanks! Now to come up w/ properties/effects for it...

I think I'll make Coal and Obsidian available alongside Timber/Lumber, the former 2 being mined like all the other metals except Coal and Obsidian are minerals, while Timber is obtained from trees and such.

Edit: So along w/ Ghosteel mentioned earlier, I'm adding a new material known as "Demonite" which is made from Ghosteel & Obsidian[2]. Additionally, "Rose Gold" (Gold[3] + Copper) has been added to the game as well. Titanium and therefore Titan's Gold have been removed. Gonna keep working on the ratios of ingredients for the other alloys as well...

Edit2: Originally I was gonna include the specific properties (density, compressive str, tensile str, & shear str) of each material numerically in the item description, but instead I've opted to do this:

Adamantite
Density
★★★★★

Compressive
★★★★★

Tensile
★★★★★

Shear
★★★★★

So basically, I'm giving each property of a material a rating on a scale of 1-5. I could also use a different symbol instead of stars. Like maybe these black boxes for example: █████

Edit3: Gemstones are now a thing! Craftable weapons/armor (as well as unique non-craftable gear) will have an augment slot (or 2 slots for 2H weaps and body slot armor) for "Gems". There are 10 in all:
  • Amethyst
  • Emerald
  • Citrine
  • Diamond
  • Pearl
  • Peridot
  • Ruby
  • Sapphire
  • Topaz
  • Zircon
Effects coming soon!
 
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Pootscooter

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Edit3: Gemstones are now a thing! Craftable weapons/armor (as well as unique non-craftable gear) will have an augment slot (or 2 slots for 2H weaps and body slot armor) for "Gems". There are 10 in all:
  • Amethyst
  • Emerald
  • Citrine
  • Diamond
  • Pearl
  • Peridot
  • Ruby
  • Sapphire
  • Topaz
  • Zircon
Diamond should give the best stats/effects of them all. Are you going to give them elemental bonuses or something? (cuz they're different colors) :p
 

Frostorm

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Perhaps...if I do, it would go like this:
  • Amethyst - shadow
  • Emerald - wind
  • Citrine - earth
  • Diamond - no element
  • Pearl - arcane
  • Peridot - holy
  • Ruby - fire
  • Sapphire - water
  • Topaz - lightning
  • Zircon - ice
Those are the available schools of magic in my game, but there is no Earth, Wind, or Water element (they do physical damage instead) so I probably won't make these gems elementally bound. Cuz if I did, player's wouldn't want any variety...like a fire mage would only go for Rubies. That's why I'd prefer to give these gems unique bonuses/effects so they'd appeal to a wider variety of character builds.

For those that are curious, the other 2 augment types I have in the game are: Rune and Souls, along w/ the aforementioned Gems. While Gems will probably end up giving a bonus to various secondary stats (hit, crit, counter, armor penetration, etc...), Runes will give more unique, non-stat effects.

Saving the best for last: the Soul slot, which is only available on weapons, will grant a weapon unleash! (think Golden Sun). My game is all about creating your very own personal weapon and growing alongside it as you go on your adventures. There will also be a feature where you can enter the realm of your weapon's soul (like a Zanpakuto's inner world in Bleach), which is basically an infinite (or just long) dungeon. If I decide to make it an infinite dungeon, it would just be a place for u to grind xp and/or increase your weapons power. If I go the non-infinite route, then getting to X floor would grant your weapon certain abilities (maybe even summon them onto the field?).
 
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Pootscooter

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What about different kinds of wood? I'm making a crafting game so I want tons of different kinds of metals/minerals/wood.
 

Frostorm

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I'm glad u asked! In fact, I stumbled upon this awesome website for all the kinds of woods out there:

It even gives all the material properties so I can use that data to infer its stats/elemental rates in-game similar to what I did w/ the metals.

Edit: May I present African Blackwood...the Adamantite of wood! lol
It has such high stats! =O

Edit2: Now that I got all kinds of wood in my game, I just need to flesh out the minerals. So far I only got Coal and Obsidian. Then again I could probably just put gems into this category since they are minerals after all.
 
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Pootscooter

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Edit2: Now that I got all kinds of wood in my game, I just need to flesh out the minerals. So far I only got Coal and Obsidian. Then again I could probably just put gems into this category since they are minerals after all.
Can you share a list of the woods you put in your game? There's so many on that website...idk which to choose lol... @.@
 

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have another character sheet! ill probably add some more details before i make my thread for this project
Every time the official RMWeb account makes a post, I think it's @Eliaquim writing it!

It's driving me crazy, but it's also wonderfully hilarious.
// Looks at Elfkisser, realizes he'd have to either install Windows 10 or compile it for Linux
// Didn't install Elfkisser.
Too much effort for a curiosity. :popcorn:
I was just high-fiving myself for all I've learnt in the engine, and how far I've come, only to forget to remove the Immortal state from a semi-scripted battle. Now the enemy never dies and I feel so smart >.>
Playtest your stuff. Always playtest.

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