"Why you should be playing ..." is a freeform column from Massively.com intended to inform you about our favorite parts of our favorite games. We want you to know why we're playing them, so you can know what to play.Runes of Magic
is enjoying some well-deserved attention lately as it's wrapping up its open beta and preparing for a launch in March
. To offer some more incentive for interested gamers to check out the game, we figured we'd let you in on a little secret: this game is awesome! How awesome? Although this would be a 10,000-word essay if that question were to be answered entirely, we're going to give you some information on just one of our favorite features of the game: open crafting
What exactly is open crafting
? It's a crafting system with no restrictions and no limits. The crafting profession system in Runes of Magic
is the gathering and manufacturing of materials to create in-game items. It's the process of creating these items with special recipes and selling them on the Auction Hall. This is something we're accustomed to in most of our favorite big-name MMOs, but in RoM
, you can take all crafting and gathering professions right from the start.
This is the part we love the most. You don't need to immediately decide which crafting profession you want for your character. You can learn them all, you can gather all materials and you can focus on one or all at any time. There are no penalties for switching crafting professions. In fact, the only real "penalty" to this system is not having enough inventory space! Even that can be solved with a few bucks into their RMT system, if you choose.Crafting Profession Basics
When you start out, you'll learn the gathering skills from your tiny village of Pioneer's Colony
. All around you are plenty of nodes to gather to your heart's content. This carries on throughout the game, as you'll realize there's no short supply of materials to gather out there. You'll start off with three available gathering professions: Mining, Woodcutting and Herbalist. From there, once you make it up to the town of Logar
, you'll be able to learn Blacksmithing, Carpentry, Armor Crafting, Tailoring, Cooking and Alchemy. These are all very straightforward production professions, so there should be no confusion that Herbalist assists Alchemy, Mining assists Armor Crafting, etc. Yet it's not as simple as that.
Each production profession plays off of the other, and in many recipes, you'll need several ingredients from several gathering professions. This makes focusing on one a bit difficult, but it depends on how serious you are about crafting. You'll also need to be within the vicinity of certain crafting tools. These tools aren't on your character, but they are at crafting stations. For example, to do any Armor Crafting, you'll need to be near the Armor Crafter NPC and his workbench. You'll know the crafting areas by the giant downward green arrows above them. You can also talk to these Crafter NPCs to purchase more recipes, according to your crafting level.
Once your skills progress, your tiers will advance as well, offering you more bonuses like rare crafting recipes. There are four ranks to complete in each profession: apprentice, craftsman, specialist and master.
Are you a little crafting-shy? Don't want to craft in public? No problem! RoM
offers crafting in your personal housing
and in your Guild Hall. Just set up a small workshop in your home, and craft away as you would in a city. These home workshops offer special crafting bonuses that enhance the XP gained while crafting. There's also plenty of storage in your house for your extra crafting materials.Crafting Dailies
Another interesting feature in RoM
crafting is the fact that you can basically level through crafting. In the beginner area, there are a series of gathering quests that allow your character to gain some XP by resupplying the village with needed materials like wood, ore and herbs. These are repeatable, and don't require killing anything. Of course, the downside to this is that you're giving away supplies that you could be using to advance your own crafting skills, but it's nice to know that you have many options.Runes and Jewels
Once you reach a certain crafting level, you can begin to craft items with rune slots. You'll find runes mostly through drops or quest rewards, and they can be added to these slottable items to enhance certain attributes. Runes are ranked, as the higher the rank, the more powerful the rune. This is also where the Arcane Transmutor
comes into play. It is an item you have in your backpack (after completing a certain quest) that is used to combine runes or increase their tiers. You can use the Arcane Transmutor on equipment runes, power stones and mana stones. This is a great way to allow players to keep an item with a certain skin they like, and customize the stats at the same time. If you still find yourself confused on how this Arcane Transmutor works exactly, you can find a handy guide at the Runes of Magic main site.
Jewels are used in much the same way as runes, yet they are more powerful. These jewels are purchased from special NPCs and can reach a maximum upgrade level of +6. The equipment becomes refined with these jewels, yet they also have a chance of becoming destroyed in the process.
Now you might be reading this whole article and thinking that these are pretty standard crafting features, and they're available in most triple-A MMOs. That's the kicker here though. Runes of Magic
has these features we see in a triple-A MMO, yet it's a free-to-play RMT-based game.
If you're a crafter, and you enjoy collecting, creating and making a bit of gold from your craft on the Auction Hall, the Runes of Magic
crafting system is certainly something you should check out. With a free game client and no monthly subscription, it's perfect for those crafters who want to enjoy an elaborate, high-quality system at no cost.