Priority One Podcast 210 | A Crafty Story

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Greetings, Admirals! You’re listening to EPISODE 210 OF PRIORITY ONE PODCAST, the premier Star Trek Online podcast! This episode was recorded on Thursday, February 19th, 2015 and made available for download on Monday, February 23rd, 2015 at PriorityOnePodcast.com!

This week we Trek Out what it’s really like to travel at Light Speed – right from the comfort of your computer! In STONews, we bring you the latest things to affect the game including this week’s patch notes, some DEV Tracking, and a special review of the Crafting system by none other than our resident Professor, Jayce. Later, we’re joined by a surprise guest for an inside perspective of some of the hot topics Priority One has been discussing.  Finally, before we wrap the show, we’ll open hailing frequencies for your incoming messages!

TOPICS DISCUSSED

This week’s Community Question:

  • What have your experiences been with the crafting system ? What do you consider “good enough” when you are crafting items with random features? What changes or new features would you like to see?

Let us know YOUR thoughts by commenting below!

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24 Comments ON " Priority One Podcast 210 | A Crafty Story "
  • alt_example

    The_Grand_Nagus February 23, 2015 at 10:33 am - Reply

    Elijah, since you enjoy BSG so much, did you watch Stargate Universe? It was pretty short lived, but I enjoyed it while it lasted and it had a dark tone that reminded me of BSG.

    • alt_example

      wardcalis March 2, 2015 at 9:42 am - Reply

      SGU was epic. Greatest scifi show I’ve seen. It was viscerally human

  • alt_example

    TobiasLTF February 23, 2015 at 10:41 am - Reply

    Another great show guys. I share your pain with the crafting system. The randomness of the current crafting system is one of its main drawbacks. I understand that if a crafter could choose which mods came on a crafted item, in the current build of STO there would be mods that would never be used. This should be an indicator to the devs that they need to the balance of the mods and truly make them equal. The only random thing that should happen would be the items initial rarity. I do have to say I appreciate the change to how many research projects you can slot at one time… just wish it would have been looked at harder when the change from 5 at a time, down to one only, and was brought up in live interview during the STLV convention.

    As for what changes I would like to see in the crafting system would be equalized mods, selectable mods during crafting and upgrading, a deconstruction / reverse engineering school that allows a crafter to break down vendor trash items into useful components / crafting materials to give greater utility to items gained instead of just selling them for 50% EC value.

    ** “Need to address the balance of the mods”

    • alt_example

      iMaximusrex February 23, 2015 at 12:32 pm - Reply

      One of the devs quite a while back had posted on the Forums that they at some point want to add some kind of system in to give players more control of mods, it was considered originally, but there wasn’t enough time to develop it, so hopefully someday.

      At this point, it’s not worth the effort (to me) to fight what I get, especially when I am mostly using Rep system gear, so that’s a lot of Dil that would just go right into the garbage.

    • alt_example

      TobiasLTF February 24, 2015 at 12:32 pm - Reply

      I’d also like to add a laboratory fleet project that would open a crafting station on your fleet Starbase. This station would give you either bonus levels of crafting, reduced component costs while crafting through the laboratory terminal, or a bonus to crafting xp. This concept could also apply to doing item upgrades, creating an additional fleet project to “upgrade” the laboratory.

  • alt_example

    Robdmc February 23, 2015 at 10:56 am - Reply

    Jayce’s experience with the crafting systems is spot on. Crafting the item you want does take thousands of Mk II items. What I would like to see is to be able to select the 3 modifiers I want and then roll on each modifier with odds of success being dependent on my school level and doff quality. That way a person with a school level close to 20 would essentially be choosing the mods directly while lower leveled people feel like they are controlling the randomness a bit. The one in a thousand we are at now with 2 weeks of work to get one item is a bit excesses and reminds me of the old random tech drops of the stfs.

    This also leads me into my problems with the upgrade system. The forth modifier it too random for my liking. I had bought 10 [Voth Antiproton Dual Beam Bank Mk XII [CrtD]x3] off the exchange for characters before the system upgrade system came into effect. 5 are on my tac’s Charal and the other 5 are on my engineers Fleet Avenger. On my tac I had upgraded then all to mk XIV and 2 of them got ultra rare. they both got [Dmg] modifiers. Because they are lockbox bound to character weapons I cannot just decide to upgrade them all and then move them around and I cannot readily replace them. For that reason I have been holding off on upgrading them and have decided to upgrade my consoles instead. I might have been more tempted to if they were bound to account so I could take the ones off my engineer so my tac could get something better then dmg.

    Unfortunately that means my just good enough weapons for crafting is quite high. anything I make needs to be better then My voth AP. I’m kinda torn on this as the proc on the voth Ap of reducing the enemies damage output works well for my escort. I would love the ability to reroll on selected modifier as I don’t really want to get my [Voth Antiproton Dual Beam Bank Mk XIV [CrtD]x3 [Dmg]] up to epic. If the reroll system randomly rerolls all mod I would be disappointed as I could make the weapon worse.

  • alt_example

    JasonH February 23, 2015 at 11:39 am - Reply

    Long time, first time.

    The crafting system is a huge upgrade on the old system.

    I wouldn’t mind the randomness of mods if they more equal in usefulness. Some of the new mods are interesting but the info on what they do is difficult to find. I would like to see either a tweak to current mods or the ability to craft specific mods. I prefer the former.

    BTW Stargate Universe was awesome. I still remain pissed that SYFY cancelled it.

    Great show as usual. Love the interviews with the devs.

    Jason H.

  • alt_example

    the LootCritter February 23, 2015 at 11:49 am - Reply

    Crafting is hit & miss. Although really cheap to do in terms of making seed items (level 2), the random nature of the outcome is the frustrating point.

    Anything that doesn’t measure up I recycle. The exchange has become overwhelmed with the refuse of other crafters.

    For a full set of ‘what you want’, you can expect to craft 4600+ attempts; 70% of that to create the seeds, the remainder are the upgrades where you get a decent number of failure before you see ‘what you want’.

    At this point I am not frustrated because I don’t see that having CrtDx4 (or CrtDx3+pen) is that important to enjoy the game. If you’re racing for higher DPS, then this is for you. Today I craft to sell on the exchange. 20K is more than enough DPS to have fun in the game.

    But like ANYTHING in STO – things change. After listening to CaptainGecko I firmly believe if you’ve invested heavily in EPIC gear now, you may have over spent.

  • alt_example

    seannewboy February 23, 2015 at 1:05 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the Galactic porn, its always fun.

    I still think the kdf command cruisers are marginal at best stylewise, too stunted front to back.

    Currently i only use the crafting for upgrades, i just dont feel the rewards are worth the cost currently.

    There is still a bunch of occasional rubberbanding, and the ui still has a bunch of lag that it never had before the start of the anniversary event.

    Wonderful show everyone, thanks for the hard work, and the bloopers at the end.

  • alt_example

    Woody_Valley February 23, 2015 at 2:40 pm - Reply

    Not a fan of DS9 hey Elijah?

    Would you say that “It’s a fake”?

    Go on, I know you want too. 😛

    Thx Guys!

  • alt_example

    Eklinaar February 23, 2015 at 4:35 pm - Reply

    My experience with the crafting system is similar to Jayce’s. The base crafting system is mediocre at best, and the upgrade system is awful. It’s too fiddly and too random. While dilithium costs in crafting by itself aren’t too bad, like Cookie said, dilithium is spread too thin. The devs should remove the randomness from the upgrade system, and reduce the number of clicks needed to craft something while they’re at it. We should just be able to pick what mods we want. Make the whole crafting system modular. Make a quality upgrade kit that is a guaranteed quality bump when applied but does nothing else, and a mark upgrade kit that is a guaranteed mark upgrade but does nothing else, and then let us mix and match mods as we choose, like the ground kit system. Remove the randomness!

  • alt_example

    sanokskyrat February 23, 2015 at 7:12 pm - Reply

    2 million for a mk II beam? No offence guys but in what universe! Over the weeks i have been watching the lowest price is 8 to 15 million. As i listen to this recording its 9 million on the exchange right now for beams and beam banks is 15 mill.

    Getting CritD x4 off the exchange starting prices start at 50 mill.

    Epic even at mk VIII is 75mill. no beams yet but ive seen thought go for 200mill! So if you want some EC focus all your efforts on making those lol.

    As for the server my theory (which has been raised before last anniversary) was all the returning players all that old information has to be converted to the game standards. Just think about all the changes that have happened in the game since last year? Thats a lot of info that has to bought up to speed.

    AS FOR THE SHIPS… I used 2 million dil to get them, to make videos on youtube videos. I was an expensive buy but anything I can do help other players is worth it (I think anyway).

    Great show as always,

    🙂 love you all

    PS. B5 Earth destroyers were called… Omega class destroyers

  • alt_example

    StarChaser February 23, 2015 at 7:24 pm - Reply

    When it comes to crafting the actual gear, I don’t mind the randomness of modifiers that much, especially since most of the items are MK II and cheaply made. When you get the modifiers you want, it makes a sweet expierence, “yay, I got the modifiers I want!” The randomness also lets you see modifiers that you may not normally see otherwise.

    When it comes to upgrading, that is a different story.
    When you upgrade items, you are spending extensive resources. I would like to see a crafting item that goes with upgrades that would allow you to select the modifier you want.

    I think it could work like this: when you claim a gear that has improved in quality, you would have a chance to use a modifier item that would apply the modifier of your choice. If you choose not to use a modifier item, then a random modifier would be applied to said gear.

    As for were to get modifier items. I think they would be either made through crafting or more likely, they would be found in the C-Store R&D packs.

    Now for the premium crafting gear (TR-116B, Aegis gear, etc.) I am not sure how to work this since you have a chance of getting Ultra Rare when crafting those.

    Another way you could do it would be when you claim gear from the crafting or upgrade system (that has a quality upgrade), the gear has sockets that you can apply modifiers to. If you have no modifier items then you could simply equip the gear and then a random set of modifiers will apply.

    I want to be able to get gear with the modifiers I want. But it should not be too easy. It needs to be hard enough that when I get the perfect Beam Array or the perfect Sniper Rifle that I value it, I feel like I accomplished something to get it. There should be a clear way to get the modifiers we want but there also needs to be dedication to go that way and get it.

  • alt_example

    Shabingly February 24, 2015 at 4:04 am - Reply

    Regarding crafting & upgrading:

    My experience has been pretty much the same; spent about 50 hours of total playtime just sitting there crafting MK II DHC’s repeatedly o get CrtDx3’s. I guess that’s not so bad because of the cheapness of white crafting stuff.

    I then decided that I was only bothered about upgrading them to MK XIV and was not going to wind myself up about a rarity jump getting a Dmg mod. Luckily , of the 4 that jumped 2 got Acc and 2 got CrtH.

    My thoughts? I understand the reasoning for the RNG in all of this (limiting the amount of specific mods on weapons in play: let’s face it, everyone would have crtdx4 weapons at the moment if they left crafting/upgrading as apart from they amended it so you could choose mods on craft/upgrade).

    In my opinion, they could do several things to remove the RNG (which no-one likes):

    First would be a balance pass on mods. If DMG was ‘better’ (or seen to be better, IMO) people would not be bothered about getting it.

    Second would be adding a choice system to crafting. There’d obviously have to be some trade-off for picking mods: either extra mats, adding an EC cost to the item craft, adding a longer time-gate. These could get ‘worse’ the mods you specify.

    Third would be a similar thing with upgrading, add the same as with crafting.

    Sorry for the wall of text.

    Cheers!

  • alt_example

    rtk142 February 24, 2015 at 4:34 am - Reply

    Hey all, great episode and I’m really liking the audio drama at the beginning. There are a couple things I’d like to comment on.

    First up, I do like the new crafting system in theory, it’s better than the old one and it’s nice to not have to go to memory alpha. I don’t really use it for high end stuff, I’ll use it for low level stuff for my alts where I don’t care about their mods. High end stuff, yes I do want to be able to pick my mods. A prime example of this is warp cores. There is a specific set of mods I would love to have on a warp core, but it is not available in game unless you get incredibly lucky. I would love to be able to craft the EXACT core I want. But I can’t. If someday they do add the ability, I will use it in a heart beat. I don’t make the special items like the TR-116 and the omni beams because I don’t have the doffs as I’m not a huge doffer.

    The other thing I want to comment on is the ship pricing. I’m fine with it. I want the mega bundle of all nine. That’s currently 12000 zen. If you were to buy all nine ships, that SHOULD be 27000 zen. That’s FIVE ships you’re getting for free, only paying for four. What I DO NOT like is that if you were to buy one ship just for the time being, that means you can’t buy the mega bundle. I have the Phantom, I love the Phantom, but that doesn’t mean I can’t buy the Operations pack. That’s my gripe with the packs. Because I want all nine, I have to wait till I can pay for all nine.

  • alt_example

    Fynn February 24, 2015 at 10:32 am - Reply

    Crafting is certainly a test of patience, and to be successful, persistence. It can be frustrating for some, but it’s a nice background activity while I’m chasing down kiddos. Upgrading quality (not mark) on the other hand is a gamble, pure and simple. Much like grind, though, a players perception can affect their enjoyment of the system. If you look at the ‘upgrade’ as the winnings, not the mod, then simply upgrading the quality will be a victory…unfortunately, I’m not mentally there yet… I wait till the aforementioned kiddos go to bed before upgrading because I tend to swear. A lot.

  • alt_example

    Thomas Townley February 24, 2015 at 4:22 pm - Reply

    After your report I wonder if I’ll get some better results if I max out a school first.

  • alt_example

    Sunseahl February 25, 2015 at 4:15 am - Reply

    After looking at most of the crafting system’s random proc application my biggest question is…

    Why can’t we have the new BOff training system applied to crafting? (see example crafting below)

    This is to say why can’t we have blank items with modding slots granted upon each rarity upgrade? You can craft and apply a mod of your choosing and apply it much like a Kit slot. Now, before people complain, instead of the endless hassle of the mods being interchangeable, once you “cook” them in through the crafting system it’s baked in, forever.

    It may make crafting take bit longer but I think this would go a long way to fixing a LOT of the hate coming out of the crafter community.

    Crafting Example:

    -> Natural progression rarity upgrade
    + Modification addition

    Weapon:
    White -> Uncommon(1 empty mod slot)

    Uncommon + [CrtD] PADD = Uncommon[CrtD]

    Uncommon[CrtD] -> Rare[CrtD](1 empty Mod Slot)

    Rare[CrtD] + [CrtD] PADD = Rare[CrtDx2]

  • alt_example

    GavinRuneblade February 25, 2015 at 1:41 pm - Reply

    On the disconnects, from the tech support forum, there are instructions to track your connection to the servers and it shows where the disconnect is happening.

    Reading through most of the posts about disconnects that show the results of running the tracking command, virtually 100% are laying the blame at Cogent, which is the ISP that is closest to PWE/Cryptic (the last step before Cryptic’s server).

    Apparently the waves of disconnects are when one of Cogent’s routers starts getting 100% packet loss. Anyone getting from Cogent to Cryptic on that particular router is dropped. Anyone connecting via a different one is unaffected. It’s not clear why this is hitting some not others; may be cryptic traffic, may be something internal to Cogent, may be something totally unrelated like other companies that also get service from Cogent and share the router with Cryptic.

  • alt_example

    GavinRuneblade February 25, 2015 at 1:58 pm - Reply

    With regard to crafting, changing mods or selecting mods is the “wrong” solution. Oh it would work, but it’s a temporary relief for a symptom, not an actual cure for the problem.

    The core problem is that the mods are greatly imbalanced. Gecko, Gorn, Borticus, and Hawk all mentioned making a balance pass to look at mods, but it seems this is not terribly high priority. I think it needs to be. Not just damage but the PVP mods are worthless (even in PVP), “over” is even worse than damage, and critd is leagues ahead of anything else. balancing these to be close to each other, will make different builds more viable as well as making crafted items with different mods closer in value to each other.

    There will always be “flavor of the month” and “best” builds, but narrowing the gap between the best and the worst is IMO the single most important issue for all of STO right now. Not just in crafting, but all through the game.

    Right now, if selectable mods were added, what would happen is no one would craft anything but antiproton critdx3 beams. They’d sell at mark 2 for ~5k. The price would spike on the elite versions that picked up a fourth critd at some random higher mark. All you’ve done is move the unicorn, you haven’t cured the problem.

    You’re still crafting “good enough” because at that point critdx3 is no longer the unicorn, it’s one step away from the unicorn and thus “good enough”.

    Balance the mods, and you make multiple unicorns. He wants this mod, she want’s that mod, and that guy over there wants something else entirely. This would be “problem solved”.

  • alt_example

    hatchery February 25, 2015 at 6:39 pm - Reply

    The crafting system requires no skill whatsoever, but it requires normal gameplay (essentially farming EC, Dil, mats–standard rewards in many places) to acquire ingredients, which are then fired away in a meta UI. It does not provide its own gameplay component.

    Other crafting systems require or benefit greatly from research (OOG), specific rewards (and associated gameplay), or their separate gameplay (handling tools).

    Randomness and failure can be interesting concepts, but only if the setback is light. Right now, a failed upgrade can literally waste days worth of gameplay (in EC, Dil, mats).

  • alt_example

    Dan Kochheiser February 25, 2015 at 10:09 pm - Reply

    Hi all! So crafting this time, eh?

    My adventures with crafting has been anything but pleasant. I really can’t call what they have in place as crafting because it defies the very definition of crafting. If I craft something, I know what I am making. There is no random end results. I clearly know what it will do. The only “random” thing would be the quality, but that would be controlled by my skill and the materials I used. If they want R&D to be crafting, then they need to design the system based on this concept, and not on the rng of effects.

    But what they could do is create a experimental prototype mission. End then you would select the materials to experiment with and the personnel conducting the experiment. And the random end result would be either a failure, or a blueprints that uses those materials for a specific items and it’s mods, including the quality level it would be at.

    In this way people would have to work out what the mats need to be. And once they get what they want, they can just build it directly. With no feeling of being robbed along the way. And they can then take this one step further by creating a mission that destroy an item but gives them the blueprints of that exact item.

    And to counter the ability to make as much as you want, they can up the material needed to make the items.

    For me the current system is way to dilithium intensive. I don’t usually get the daily limit of or to be refined in one day. And with everything costing dilithium these days, the fun is being seeped from the game. Or at least my fun. It used to be fun to go play the content you want. Now, it’s go collect the dil, to refine it and then use it to upgrade, buy or make the gear you truly need to play the content you think is fun. Or at least used to think was fun. Any more, I am not even thinking that playing STF’s at Advanced is fun any more just because of all the failure conditions that another player can cause to happen.

    Just to let you know where I am on crafting, as write this, my Beams are at 19, Cannons, Engineering, Ground Weapons and Projectiles are at 15, Science is at 11 and Shields are at 6. My eight weapons are 4 very rare bio-molecular phaser beams at Mk XIV, one mk XIV Very Rare Heavy Bio-Molecular Phaser Turret, one Mk XIV very Rare Kinetic Cutting Beam and one Very Rare Mk XIV Enhanced Bio-Molecular Phonton Torpedo. The mods are either dmg, CrtD or Acc.
    If I ever get the guy that alloys me to build Omni-directional beams, another thing I hate, then I would accept Acc, CrtD and CrtH. Nothing else I feel will be effective for what I want to do.

    The systems as it is, is not rewarding or fulfilling. It engenders frustration and relief when you don’t have to do it anymore. And it really only benefits those you have the ability to spend money to get around the limitations that are inherent to a randomized itemization system. Which means that people like me, without the funds to spend, get to suffer through this poorly paying out system. And either waste my limited time and resources on getting the best, or suffer with what I can get and be called names by the community for doing better. It really is no win or fun here.

    I just hope that they will look at all of this and really revamp it to be a more reliable system that actually feels like crafting.

    Sorry for long winded response.

  • alt_example

    Necrion February 26, 2015 at 5:41 pm - Reply

    Hi Priority One Crew!

    My experiences with crafting in STO have been middle of the road compared to other MMOs I’ve played. I’m at 15+ in all schools, and have the appropriate DOffs to craft the special items, such as 360 degree beam arrays.
    Here’s a little background on my perspective: First consider that in Everquest, when you’d craft an item, there was a chance that the crafting would fail, and you would loose all your components, some of which were very difficult to farm. Then we have the current 800 pound gorilla, WoW; in WoW, you always know what you’d craft, and it would never fail. That said, you don’t always get a skill up for crafting, so maxing out your crafting was sometimes painful, as you’d have to craft items over and over again to max out your skill> Maxing your skill was important as you would then gain access to the most powerful crafting recipes.
    STO has struck a medium somewhere between these two. When you craft, you’ll always end up with the item you meant to craft. The issue is, you have no idea what quality (Uncommon, Rare, etc.) the item will be, and have no control over the modifiers the item will have.
    This system leads me to agree with Jayce that the current crafting and upgrading systems have too much of an RNG component to be useful. I would like to see more control over what the end result will be. I to have crafted hundreds of Beam arrays, and am still a long way away from the coveted 7 CritDx3 or x4 AP beam array boat I’d like to have.
    Comparatively, in WoW, you can enchant your gear with one special bonus, such as more HPs or better crit chance. Further, you can use a system called “Reforging” to shuffle existing stats on your gear into a stat you would prefer. The equivalent in STO would be to have some, or all, of the modifiers be changeable at an NPC on ESD or Q’onos. I like the idea of making weapons similar to our ground kits, where you can slot in the mod you want. They could be purchased from an EC store, and you could have better quality mods be made by crafters. This would also let the devs release new mods via crafting, lockboxes, special events, and more. Finally, this would provide what the players want: better optimization and customization.

  • alt_example

    ClanFloresActual February 26, 2015 at 10:50 pm - Reply

    I listened to show # 210 and I thought about the closing bumper. Actually, I’ve listened to all the shows and they end the same way. The hosts get an enemy contact on sensors, raise shields and, I assume “engage” in combat.

    Now, this is suppose to be a Starfleet crew. Isn’t Starfleet about peaceful contact first and foremost? and isn’t Starfleet about exploration as well? I hate to say it guys, but the bumper suggests a Klingon attitude instead of a Starfleet one. This may be a simplification but I think Klingons care more about the boom so that they can add another glorious victory to their battle record. (at this point, another idea started nibbling at the back of my mind, so bear with me please).

    To finish this part; a couple of examples:
    1) “Capt. a massive energy spike just appeared on sensors.”.
    “It’s a fluorescing nebula! Incredible!”.
    “Set a flyby course and let’s check it out.”.
    “Engage!”.

    or how about:

    2) “Capt. a force field just sprang up ahead. Our course is blocked!”.
    “Hello my little humans. Shall we go on an adventure today?”.
    [everybody] “Oh No! It’s Q!”
    “Indeed. Shall we play?”.

    So that part please consider as an observation with possible alterations.

    Anyway, as I was thinking about all of the above, it struck me…
    The STO space missions almost always end like that! Just about all enemy ships need to be destroyed before you progress.

    Well, that’s just fine with Klingons, it’s glorious battle. It may even fit with pre-Republic Romulans as well (they are destroying their enemies, after all). But Starfleet? Starfleet would use just enough force to achieve a mission objective. And they would also consider the cost of life. Enemy craft do not necessarily have to be destroyed.

    What if the option existed in missions to “shoot to disable”? You still get the same rewards and also the satisfaction you didn’t have to utterly wipe out the opposition. You would truly be following the principles of the Federation in that regard. And maybe, your opposition would wonder why they’re not dead. It may even cause them to rethink their policy towards Starfleet ships.

    Should this option be available to Klingons? The justification is that Klingons have a history of raiding. And it’s hard to conduct raids against targets that have been utterly destroyed. Besides, didn’t they sign a new treaty with the Federation? It would be difficult to keep that treaty intact if they go “boom boom boom” all over the place.

    And of course, what about the Romulans? They’re in the midst of rebuilding their civilization (and that kind of thing is likely to take a LONG time). There’s a new sense of co-operation in the Republic with their former opponents. However that doesn’t mean they’ve overcome CENTURIES of xenophobia and distrust of other races. It would be more appropriate to allow them the option to sneak into a combat zone, do whatever deed they’re tasked with, then leave (perhaps with a little subspace love note in the same vein as “I was here, where were you?” or perhaps a playful “Kilroy was here.”) without anyone being the wiser.

    Anyhoo, I started with being bothered by the show close and ended up considering alternate methods of mission endings more in line with appropriate factions. Quite a segue! What do you all think?


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