I recently chronicled the new Crafting system in Vega Conflict. Having crafted merrily away for a couple of weeks, I have some more information on the Crafting system, an explanation of the Fusion screen, Some criticisms on what Kixeye did wrong, and pointers to the things that they need to do to fix them.
Before proceeding any further, it is probably a good idea to explain some of the terminology that I will be using:
Faction: There are currently three factions in the game: Rebel, Vega, and VSec. A fourth faction — the Iron Star Company — is rumored to be coming soon.
Tier: Level of the ship. This is confusing, but the game does a good job of showing this via color-coding.
- Tier 1 Hulls (Harrier/Genesis/Longbow/Rancor) have White Text/Black Background. They can be upgraded to Mark II.
- Tier 2 “Uncommon” Hulls (Talon/Exodus/Broadsword/Venom) have Green Text/Green Background. They can be upgraded to Mark III.
- Tier 3 “Rare” Hulls (Nighthawk/Revelation/Trident/Fury) have Blue Text & Background. They can be upgraded to Mark IV.
- Tier 4 “Epic” Hulls (Apocrypha/Eagle etc) Have Purple Text & Background. They can be upgraded to Mark V.
Type: The class of ship;Frigate/Cruiser/Destroyer/Battleship/Cutter/Carrier
To upgrade a ship using the crafting system, you need to
- Research the upgrade in the ship lab (one-time per Faction/Tier/Type/Mark).
- Collect One Pattern. Patterns are the most specific items of all. A Pattern is specific to a Faction/Tier/Type/Mark.
- Collect or create enough Cores. A core is specific to a Faction/Tier/Type.
- Collect enough parts. A parts box contains a random number of parts. Like Cores, parts are specific to Faction/Tier/Type.
- Collect enough armaments. Armaments are found in relatively large numbers and are specific to a Faction.
Patterns and parts, in particular are more difficult to acquire than the others, as cores can be synthesized and armaments can be gained from any ships of that faction.
I have finally succeeded in making sense of the fusion screen.
- Each entry has two icons.
- The left icon is the “destination” (a core)
- The right icon is the source (a pattern or a core. the pattern is shown by a picture of a ship). Remember that a Talon Mk II pattern and a Talon Mk III pattern are not the same, which explains what looks like duplicate entries.
- Any pattern can be converted into an equivalent core. This takes time and resources.
- Four cores can be converted into one core of a higher tier by a process known as “Fusion”. This is instantaneous.
Here are my criticisms of the crafting system as implemented:
- It is now necessary to destroy tiny fleets to get Tier-1 boxes. Want to upgrade your Rancor Battleships? Congratulations: you have to defeat dozens of Level 10-17 fleets. Most advanced players will have scrapped their old, small ships, and if all you have on hand are Level 30+ fleets, this is about as tedious as swatting flies – and about as much fun.
- At present, the highest available upgrades are not as good as the Black Market “Mk II” (now “Enhanced”) editions. The only advantage the the new ships have is resistance tech.
- It is very easy to end up collecting a huge pile of junk parts that you don’t want and/or cannot use.
- There are several upgrade really stupid paths that cannot be unlocked without many unnecessary steps. For instance, I have unlocked and built a Ragnarok Carrier (event), but to upgrade it I have to first unlock the Midgard Carrier — which is a Blueprint Hull — and then Unlock the Valhalla Carrier — which is an event hull that I do not have. So in order to upgrade my Ragnarok Carrier, I have to unlock two other Carriers I have no intention of building!
This amounts to an awful lot of “grinding”, and because of this, I am no longer actively crafting. By that I mean that I am no longer seeking out fleets to attack for specific boxes. For instance, upgrading a Dread Battleship from Mark I to Mark II requires a hell of a lot of “grinding” against dozens of high-level Vega fleets in order to amass the parts that I require, while simultaneously collecting a bunch of parts for ships that I don’t have. Then I have to do it all again to upgrade from Mark II to Mark III. Too much work.
This brings me to my single biggest criticism of the crafting system: it’s too damn complicated. Before this, you would do Daily Missions to get Blood Amber, and you would trade that Blood Amber for upgrade credits. You apply that to your ships, and voila! Instant
Mk II… er… Enhanced version. Simple. Now, you have to Build a workshop, research the hull upgrade, then grind/fuse away to collect the four items required in sufficient quantities, then you craft the upgrade credit, then finally apply the upgrade credit to a ship… all for a ship that has less capabilities than the old Mk II version. Not impressed.
That said, here are my suggestions:
Get rid of the totally unnecessary “claim” screen, or provide an option to do so. (FIXED!)
- Reduce the amount of items necessary for an upgrade. My advice is to eliminate “Parts” entirely.
- Need a mechanism to quickly open *all* boxes. Please?
- It would be nice if we had a mechanism to upgrade/downgrade/trade unwanted parts to get something that you may actually want.
- Finding Tier-I tech in Tier-4 boxes is maddening. It is bad enough to fight and die for a chance to get a box; opening the box to find low-level tech is an insult. Fix this!