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Ideas for more immersive crafting (with the insane scribblings of a madman)


mew_
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I know that several of these ideas are on the roadmap, and some are on the frequently suggested, however I wanted to try and visualize them. There are captions in the drawings for people too lazy to read, however I will try my best to explain everything in text. This might also not make any sense at all.

Improved toolmaking

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Right now, knapping feels great to do, however dragging and dropping my toolheads that I used my blood sweat and tears to left-click on into the crafting grid with a twig is unsatisfying. So I drafted an idea to make it more immersive that involves knapping sticks into handles.

For stone tools, the sticks are (x,y,z) 3x8x3 dimensionally, and need to be knapped with a stone just like toolheads. Upon completion, the toolhead is placed into the slot and hammered in with the stone. For the spear, the handle is longer than one stick, so you'll need to mend two together with dried grass. 

For metalworking, a new tool made of stone would be needed, the primitive hammer. Made of stone, it's only use is to hammer toolheads onto sticks, which no longer need to be knapped to fit the tools, because it's a video game. The metal hammers also do this function, however they are hard enough to smith, so there is still some gated progression. It would take a few bonks, and maybe even require to wait for the toolhead to cool down first before you can put it on the handle. 

Carpentry (deprecated) I rethought this idea

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Right now, carpentry is pretty lame. Because there is none! You drag and drop boards and tools into the crafting grid, so I wanted to try and come up with an idea to add proper carpentry. 

There is a new tool, the planer, which needs a forged blade, and, using the previous system, needs to assembled by placing the blade on an anvil, then a board, and then hammering a stick onto a marked voxel. 

The hammer and chisel will take out individual voxels of material (1x1x1), the saw will remove all material vertically, used for making large cuts, the knife can remove large amounts of material along a single axis, and the planer can remove large amounts of material on a face. 

Fluid holding items, like the barrel and bucket, would need to be sealed with a material like resin, or more historically, pitch, which was used in sealing the hulls of wooden ships.

Pegs are hammered into holes, and are a means of adding material back onto a piece. They are cut individually from boards. 

There are so many recipes made with boards that I can't possibly forsee the possibilities with all of them, and blocks like the large wooden gear, which are 3x1x3, wouldn't even fit on the workbench, and would need to be assembled in pieces before being stuck together. 

Glassblowing

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This one is completely insane and isn't even on the roadmap, however I felt the need to try and cobble something together anyway. 

The blowpipe is casted from iron in a fired clay mold with a 1 voxel gap in the middle. The marver is a wooden table with brass plates on it, the jacks and shears need to be forged from iron because the temperatures are too hot for lesser metals. 

Soda lime is a mixture of soda ash and lime, and is necessary to start glassblowing, or else the furnace won't get hot enough, and the glass will be stiff and unworkable. Boron trioxide can be added to make heat-resistant glass for cookware, or maybe even an alchemy or potion brewing mechanic, if we ever get one. Lime is already in the game, but boron trioxide and soda ash are tricky, and would need to be acquired by pulverizing completely new minerals. 

The glass furnace has two ports, the main furnace which gets super hot, and the secondary port, called, no joke, the "glory hole". They'd be lined with differently-sized steel drums, which I couldn't think of an immersive way to craft, so you'd just place them in the crafting grid surrounded by stone/refractory bricks. The annealing kiln would be made from refractory bricks and have a metal door and would be needed to cool glass projects down slowly, so they don't break from drastic temperature changes. 

5 chunks of glass and any additives (not dyes) would be placed in the large port of the glass furnace, and would need to be heated to ~800+ degrees celsius, before being moved to the marver. Right clicking on the marver would prompt a recipe select. Powdered dyes could be placed on the marver before moving the glass project, and the project would need to be rolled around in the dye to distribute the color. Selecting a recipe will prompt the character to blow into the blowpipe, beginning the crafting process. The blowpipe can hold up to 40 units of molten glass, however 5 chunks will only get you 20 units, so more can be added at any time. 

Molten glass starts off as a 5x5x5 voxel cube. Right clicking with the blowpipe while remaining at eye level will widen the piece by one voxel on the X and Z axis (6x5x6). Looking straight up or down and right clicking with the blowpipe will either lengthen or shorten the piece by one voxel, respectively (5x6x5, or 5x4x5).

The jacks are held in the offhand, and a tool mode can be selected with shift + F. When selecting a tool mode, the player will need to place the blowpipe on the marver by right clicking on it. The workable piece will extend out from the marver in the direction closest to the player. The jacks have 4 tool modes:

Pinch: Will pinch one line of voxels inward on a piece, decreasing the x and z values by on a selected line, while the rest of the piece is unaffected. 

Pull: Will pull out one voxel of molten glass, and allow it to be dragged along for more complex shape requirements. Once a voxel is filled while pulling, it will not be moved, so a player should be mindful. 

Incise: Using the jacks, the player will completely remove a face of the project, allowing for it to be widened. Used in the creation of bowls, cups, and glass panes. 

Widen: Inserting the jacks into an open face will extend a selected line out by one voxel along the x and z axis. 

Once a project is shaped, it will need to be cut with shears to remove it from the blowpipe. It will then need to be placed in the annealing kiln, which will allow for its temperature to drop slowly so it doesn't break. Once a piece is at around 300 celsius, it can be safely removed and left to cool outside the kiln. 

Glass panes are something you need a lot of, so all you need to do is cut open one face of a project and jam it into a clay mold. Up to 16 glass panes can be placed in the annealing kiln. 

Someone tell me if this made any sense at all.

This video is a very good representation of glassblowing techniques. No obtuse commentary, although it features some tools and implements that I omitted to keep the system as simple as possible.

Uhh.. woodchopping

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To finish off this post, something simple! To make a chopping block, hold shift and right click on a placed log 3 times, each time your character performing a heaving motion with the axe, and it will make a chopping block! Placing logs on the chopping block and right clicking once with the axe will cause the player to perform the same heaving axe motion, and split the wood into 4 firewood, instead of just 2, to compensate for the extra effort. 

I hope at least some of this made sense. I hope to update this thread with some more ideas I'm workshopping, like maybe textile manufacture, or underwater basket weaving. 

Edited by mew_
improved the formatting a lil bit
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14 hours ago, Garjouan said:

Personally, I think knapping branches for stone tools might be a bit much, but I love your drawings :D

Thank you! For these ideas, I want to try avoiding using UIs, specifically the crafting grid, but with the exception of the "select recipe" UI. There is almost definitely a better way to do UI-less tool assembly, maybe using the offhand? But I want to try to keep everything within the voxel-style crafting that the devs have already made. 

Leatherworking

You'll need to zoom in for this one...

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I used this video and this video as sources for this setup, however I did not follow them perfectly and omitted some steps I felt would be in excess.

Most of the fundamentals of leatherworking are already in the game, but there is a way to improve it, and even maybe a method of crafting leather goods with the voxel system and an underused tool, the shears. 

Firstly, the scudding knife will need to be forged and, in trying to keep consistent with my previous posts, two branches will need to be hammered on either side of the worked item as handles. The fleshing bench/beam and the stretching frame are assembled as (hopefully legibly) demonstrated in the drawing. The shears are needed to cut leather into shape to make items. 

A preliminary step, used to store hides for preparation, is curing. Hides are animal flesh, and as such they can rot like meat can. Using salt on a hide will cure it, and then it can be stored on a shelf to further delay the rotting process. Once hide is needed, it needs to be placed down and splashed with a bowl of water to rinse the salt off. The only problem with this is that acquiring salt may be difficult in certain regions without halite rocks, so, if we ever get saltwater bodies, you could evaporate a bowl of saltwater to get some salt. 

Different sizes of hides will need larger vats to soak them in. Barrels, when placed side-by-side, will (ideally) connect seamlessly to create larger storage vessels. A 2x2 setup is needed to soak large and huge hides, while a 2x1 setup will do for medium hides, and a single barrel is enough for small hides. 8 animal hides will fit in their required setups, so if 4 barrels are setup, 32 small hides will fit, 16 medium hides will fit, and 8 large and huge animals hides can fit. Animal hides will need to be soaked in limewater, which ideally could be made by throwing lime powder into barrels of water, and having any excess precipitate out at the bottom if the mixture gets oversaturated. After soaking for 18 hours (kind of an arbitrary number I made up on the fly) the hides can be taken out and placed on the fleshing bench/beam.

The scudding knife is held with two hands, and holding right click on a hide placed over the fleshing bench will slowly strip away the fur. The amount of time it takes should increase depending on the hide's size, going from around 2 seconds for small hides, 3 for medium, 6 for large, and 8 for huge hides. Once the keratinous content has been stripped, the hide is splashed with a bowl of water again to rinse off the limewater. 

Using a quern, oak logs are ground into oak bark, which are then thrown into barrels of water, and then sealed for 24 hours. Instead of pressing a button on a UI to seal a barrel, I would suggest being able to place 3 boards on top of a barrel to seal it, or craft a barrel lid which can be placed on top of one. For a 2x2 setup, multiple sets of boards or multiple lids will be needed to seal all the barrels, or maybe one big lid could be made. In-game there are currently two strengths of tannin that hides need to soak in before they are completed. I feel that this would be redundant, especially given the extra work needed to tan leather with this system. 

After soaking in the tannin for 15 days, the hides can be removed and placed onto the stretching frame. Although this is not represented in the drawing I would suggest that multiple small and medium hides should be able to be placed on one frame, 4 and 2, respectively, while only 1 huge or large hide will fit on a stretching frame. After placing the tanned hide, fat boiled over a campfire would need to be applied to the hide to lubricate it while it stretches so that it doesn't crack the grain. After stretching for 8 hours (another arbitrary number) the hide would become leather. 

Different sized hides will make larger pieces of leather, which, when placed, will be different sized rectangles when cutting into clothing. (the Z coordinate is factored out of these dimensions, as the leather is flat) Small hide would be 7x7, medium hide would be 9x9, large hide would be 12x12, and huge hide would be 16x16. Leather is cut in a process similar to knapping, any excess not connected to the main recipe would be instantly removed to save time, however for every 10 voxels of leather removed, you would get one scrap leather, which can be placed in a barrel of water for 10 days, removed and then heated to create glue. 

The two examples of recipes in the picture are very simple, a boot and 3 leather belts. When the boot is finished being cut out of the leather, you would need to fold over all the sides by like origami and they would magically stitch themselves together because it's already complex enough. I can't possibly foresee how a more complex item like a vest or a coat would need to be made. Maybe just a flat representation of the object on a leather hide? Maybe you'd need to make two and attach them together to make the clothing, I'm not sure. 

I've tried to stay within the bounds of mechanics currently in the game, as I want to make this seem as feasible as possible. 

Edited by mew_
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22 hours ago, Stroam said:

These are quite detailed. Wish more suggestions were like this.

This is reassuring! I had been worried that being so thorough left too little room for interpretation. I've sort of hung this thread out to dry, but in the mean time I've come up with a few more ideas. 

Firstly I'd suggest checking out this playlist, and this guy's channel in general. He was a great source of information when it came to trying to make the more advanced mechanics compatible with Vintage Story's antiquated methods of crafting. 

Crafting with Two Hands

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 For items that require only two materials to craft, you can hold them in both hands and shift + right click to craft them. 

For example, the torch, which requires 2 dry grass and 1 stick, would be made by putting the 2 dry grass in the offhand and the stick in the mainhand, and then shift + right clicking. The firestarter requires the same materials, which could pose an issue if you're making a lot of torches at once, and don't want any firestarters. So, for making an item like the firestarter, you'd have the sticks in the offhand and the dry grass in the mainhand. Of course, there are probably some recipes I'm not considering which could cause conflict, but this could also be circumvented with some kind of UI, similar to the "select recipe" pop-up box that appears when knapping/clay forming/smithing. 

Mortar and Pestle

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The mortar and pestle would definitely have some overlap with the quern when it comes to recipes, however the quern, which can be automated, would differ from the mortar and pestle in that it cannot be used to process some materials into more advanced forms. 

The player places items or fluids into the mortar, and then grinds them together with the pestle. The shown example is for crafting horsetail poultice, in which you place 4 horsetails and use 0.25 liters of water to craft the poultice. After the recipe is assembled it is completed by holding right click with the pestle in the mainhand. Some more advanced recipes would include blasting powder and raw refractory bricks. 

The mortar and pestle would share recipes with the quern, but not crafting times. It is a much smaller set of instruments than the quern is, and so, if you wanted to make salt to cure meat, you could just grind the halite stones in a kitchen rather than needing to go to the quern.

Weaving Reeds

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Currently, reeds are the most basic form of crafting different furniture items. Although it might be unnecessary, a system like this could justify the implementation of making more unique reed-based furniture. 

In the crafting interface, reeds are 8 voxels in length. Placing them along the x-axis on either the top of the bottom voxels of the grid will place it vertically, and placing them along the y-axis on either the left or the right will place the reeds horizontally. The reeds need to overlap to complete the steps. Since the reeds are 8 voxels in length, they can be too long for a recipe to be completed, and in this case they will need to be cut to shape by right-clicking with a knife. 

Sticks are also a primary implement in weaving the reeds, and in some recipes they will need to be placed after the recipe is complete. In the given examples, the grid of reeds is made first, and the sticks are put into place last before the item is complete. 

Brazing

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Brazing is a method of joining metal together by placing alloys of a lower temperature in an area that needs to be joined, while the metal that is being joined is of a higher temperature. In these cases, brass bits and copper plates are used, the brass bits serving as the joining material. 

The brazing kiln is formed out of clay with a grate, fuel is inserted in the bottom port and worked items are inserted in the top port. Placing a metal plate in the worked item slot will prompt the recipe creation. The example shown in the image is of a boiler used in distilling alcohol. 

The brazing kiln needs to be watched so that the metals don't fuse together. For reference, brass melts at 920 degrees celsius, while copper melts at 1084 degrees celsius. The fuel in the brazing kiln needs to get up to at least 920 degrees, but if different metals are being used such as zinc, cheaper fuels could be used. If the worked item gets too hot, the metals will fuse together and create a big mess. I had some second thoughts about making that necessary, as it doesn't really add anything and might just be unnecessarily annoying, especially since there aren't any consequences for overheating metals in any other instance, such as heating up copper in a forge to 1100 degrees, at which it should melt. 

Kiln Upgrade

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This is a design for a more advanced killed which can fire multiple items of pottery at once, or be used to collect liquid byproducts of charcoal burning. By default the base is 3x3, with room to fire 9 items, however this could be upscaled. 

The pottery kiln is made from clay bricks, and also makes use of some specialized items, such as an opening port, a clay brick door, clay brick grates, clay brick faucets and clay brick collectors. In the opening port, a campfire is made, which will start the burning process. Right clicking on the clay grates with firewood will place 4 firewood underneath each of them. Right clicking on the grates with a collector will instead attach the collector to the grate. 

When creating charcoal in the kiln, one stack of firewood needs to fill all the air blocks, and the campfire in the front port gets lit. A faucet needs to be placed on either of the bottom sides of the kiln to drain the pitch that will get produced. A bucket or barrel can be placed beneath it to collect it. For every stack of firewood 2 liters of pitch are made, which means there would need to be 5 stacks to fill a bucket and 10 to fill a barrel. 

Pitch serves as an alternative for resin, but it also used in some of its own recipes. When making torches, using pitch will make the torch burn brighter. 

Steel Case-Hardening

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Case-hardening is the process of increasing the carbon content of the surface of a piece of steel. It is used primarily in hardening smaller instruments like saws, files, drills, etc. Case-hardened steel is hard but brittle, which makes it unsuitable for making armor or larger tools. 

First, the carbon pack/paste is made by grinding together 6 charcoal, 4 salt, and 3 flour, and then adding a liter of water. This will give 4 items worth of paste. 

Iron items are placed into the forge, they are then right-clicked with the carbon paste to cover them, then they are wrapped in clay by right-clicking on them with a clay item. The forge is filled up to the top with 5 charcoal and are left to burn and cool completely. 

As opposed to forging this type of steel, the items to be hardened are made beforehand, and are case-hardened later. 

Soldering

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Soldering is used in the assembly of complex mechanisms, described in the later diagram. 

Before soldering can begin, fat is placed in a cooking pot and left to render out over a campfire for 6 hours. The resulting tallow will serve as a flux that will help the solder apply to the parent metal. The soldering bars need to be casted in a clay mold out of the silver solder or lead solder alloys. The soldering irons need to be heated in the forge before soldering begins. 

Firstly, the material is cleaned with water, then the tallow flux is applied. The part that needs to be soldered on is placed, and with the heated soldering iron in the main hand and a solder bar in the offhand, holding right click with solder the part to the base. 

Complex Mechanisms

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I want to preface this next idea by saying that there are some incomplete ideas stated here. I was unable to think of them in a game-friendly way, however they are still important steps. For this I would refer to the earlier playlist, which includes a pump drill, a simple vice, and mentions the idea of lathes existing in antiquity. 

In order to prompt the creation of a recipe, a scoring fluid is needed so that markings can be made on the metal. 2 beeswax, 1 resin, and 1 liter of pitch are mixed in a mortar and pestle, which is then heated over a campfire. This scoring fluid is then applied to a metal plate (usually bronze), which will prompt the creation of a recipe.

I was unable to imagine what this style of crafting could be used for, other than the mechanism that powers the echo chamber, so I used that for an example. 

The recipe is displayed with holograms of the required parts. Hovering over a part with clay in the mainhand and right clicking will create a clay mold of that part. These dynamic parts could easily get confused but are unable to be made identical due to the nature of this crafting. I created a system of notation that follows the pattern of: {recipename}: Part {partnumber}{stepletter}. For example, Echo Chamber: Part 1A.

In order to cast these parts out of metal, two sand molds would need to be made. In an empty sand mold, the part is placed on the bottom, and the mold is then packed with sand. Right-clicking on the mold will flip it over, and a clay shaft needs to be placed to create a funnel for the metal to pour into. The top mold is then packed with sand. The clay shaft is then removed, then the top sand mold is removed, and then the mold of the casting item is removed, and the top sand mold is put back in place. Molten metal (usually bronze) is then poured into the opening, and left to cool. When the finished part is taken out, the metal shaft will still be on the part, and it will need to be removed by putting the part in the offhand and holding a case-hardened steel saw in the main hand and right-clicking. 

For the example in the recipe, which is a gear, the teeth will need to be filed into the gear, which I had some conflicting thoughts about. In the playlist above, the guy makes a vice out of boards and used it to clamp down a bronze wheel, and files the teeth in that way. I was unsure if I wanted to make an entire mechanic for that, when it could easily be justified to make the teeth by holding the part in the offhand and the file in the mainhand. A vice in that style could also be used for other things, although I'm unsure what. 

Additionally, a drill would be required to drill a hole in the gear, and although I had an idea for it, I was unable to finish it because I almost always hit a dead end. There is an example of a pump drill that can bore into metal in the playlist, however I could not figure out how such a tool would be crafted while circumventing the crafting grid.

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This is a potter's wheel. Mechanical power is given into one of the bottom sides and transferred to the bottom large gear with angled gears. The potter's wheel functions by allowing the player to hold right click to create an item, without needing to place the voxels in a specific orientation, much like the duplicate layer function. Extra voxels are eliminated by holding left click. 

 

For some closing thoughts, I feel the carpentry crafting might become too confusing, as there's just so many limits with it. I feel a system similar to the system used in the complex mechanics crafting could be used in making specific parts for specific items. Boards are placed where the parts should go, and are then cut into shape using the various tools. Making it this way could also serve as an introduction to the much more complex system of casting parts when making mechanisms. I might make another version of it, since it felt to me that it lacked clarity in the first place. 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I ran out of file attachment space on my account, so I uploaded everything to imgur instead. 

Elaboration on Sand Molding

I had some conflicting thoughts about this mechanic. It's a fairly basic form of crafting so I figured it would be strange if you needed mid-game materials to utilize it properly, so I changed it up a little bit. 

Little Parts, in relation to "Complex Materials"

I didn't go too much in detail into the main focus of the "complex mechanisms" part of the last post, and so I wanted to expand on those ideas a little bit more. Some parts require more work than just a simple casting, and so I tried to make it seem as real as possible with as little tools as possible.

There were three primitive drills I could choose from, The brace, augur, and pump-drill. I went with the brace for drilling metal, and the augur for drilling wood.

Carpentry, Rethought

I gradually became more and more unhappy with the previous carpentry idea, so I decided to rework it entirely. It's still incredibly rough, however when trying to connect mechanics in gameplay, the style of crafting used in carpentry could familiarize the player with the style of crafting used when assembling more complex parts. 

An extra idea I didn't put into the drawing was the ability to make proper handles from the treadle lathe instead of using sticks, which could give tools more durability and an efficiency bonus.

Making Fabric

This video and this video were what I used to help me fabricate this idea.

A detail that isn't in this post could be that, if you pick the tailor class, you would get extra special recipes when choosing on the warping reel.

Occult Crafting , Occult Crafting Expanded

This is an idea that diverges from the realistic age-based progression of the game, and taps more into its Lovecraftian world. 

The second link goes to an expanded version of the original picture that is probably lore-breaking, but was fun to come up with nonetheless. There was some small details in the game that stood out to me and I tried to spin them into something that could be mildly interesting. 

Miscellaneous idea for Caves

I felt I had to include this idea because I had, sort of incidentally, linked it back to another post. I didn't think it was worthy of its own thread so I put it here.

Me and a friend played around with some AI image generation and came up with some cool visualizations for what these environments might look like.

Cave layer 3

Cave layer 4

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