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superninja109
2019-01-31, 04:29 PM
Hello.

I recently read a recent Angry GM article about making a crafting system for 5e. I was wondering, generally, how you would manage it if you were remaking the crafting system. No need for tables and such, just a general picture of how you'd do it.

My idea was that every time you kill a monster, you gain units of resources, based on creature type, equal to its CR. For example, if you defeat a spectre (CR 1 undead), you would gain 1 undead unit. As you accumulate these over time, when you have time in a town, you can spend these units to make magic items. Each magic would have a formula of units in order to make it. For example, a flame tongue would require, say 12 elemental units and 7 humanoid units. The formulas would have to be scaled to rarity and such, but I haven't worked all that out yet. The units represent general parts gained from defeated enemies. For example, one dragon unit could be dragon scales or claws or something. What do you think about this idea?

But, how would you do this? What elements would you include? What changes would you make to any existing crafting systems(PHB, Xanathar's, mine, other people's)?

Ninja_Prawn
2019-01-31, 05:27 PM
just a general picture of how you'd do it.

This is something I have looked at in the past (I do, in fact have tables and numbers), but as for how I'd do it, I'd start by looking at where the problems are with crafting in the core rules.

As far as I can see, these are (in order of severity):

Crafting takes too long (in game time). If you want to craft anything of value, you have to spend weeks at it, which causes all sorts of storytelling problems and turns people off straight away.
Crafting feels like an afterthought that no one paid any attention to. The rules are thin, and vague, and impractical. There aren't even clear rules for repairing damaged items.
Rules for running businesses and building strongholds insufficient and unrealistic. People want to do these sorts of things sometimes, and it's unfair to ask DMs to come up with rules for this on the spot.
Insufficient granularity in tools, and it's unclear what some of them do. Obvious toolkits are missing from the PHB. Little thought is given to the interactions between trades, or multi-stage manufacturing processes.
There are no rules for special materials, in terms of where to harvest them, how easy they are to find/process, which items might require rare ingredients, etc. Obviously this is something that could turn into a very long book in its own right, but the complete lack of support leaves DMs high and dry.
Insufficient interaction between mechanical features and the crafting system. There aren't any feats for crafters, or spells that speed up crafting for example.
So I'd start by trying to address those sorts of concerns, most of which aren't too hard when you put a bit of effort in. It's certainly a big enough topic that it's worth taking a strategic approach though, and thinking about the overall task of 'making crafting fun', rather than leaping straight into half-baked mechanical patches.

Kane0
2019-01-31, 07:15 PM
Its the sort of system that can’t really be tacked on, it needs to be a core part of the gameplay loop if you utilize it. It would need to be baked into multiple portions of the game, not just the combat pillar or downtime. It would also need to be fleshed out enough to withstand the time and attention that would demand of dms and players.
So along the lines of say spellcasting rather than exhaustion

druid91
2019-01-31, 07:29 PM
Honestly? I'd just put out an entire sourcebook of Crafting. The Big Book of Crafting. With step by step process for how to craft things, as well as how to work magic into the process, requiring specific spells that are ONLY for making that variation of magical gear. For example a spell called 'Enchant Weapon +1' It does exactly what it says on the tin, requiring maybe some expensive reagents.

For example a sword would require you to have X amount of iron. Then you roll a skill check to smith it into a blade. Then roll another skill check to make the guard and grip. Potentially granting advantage in specific circumstances or giving +1 AC if you have a full hand-guard. Then your wizard would cast Enchant Weapon +1. Bam. You have a +1 sword.

Basically, crafting simply mundane things would be hard but doable. Possibly including some mechanic like 'If you fail to hit the required DC, but come within X distance of hitting it, then you make progress and the DC is lowered by 5.'

Magical equipment would have spells to create them, with rare and expensive reagents. Reagents that might require hunting down a unicorn. Or a Basilisk. Or whatever.

MagneticKitty
2019-01-31, 09:11 PM
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B3jTpp41Jz9VbUZZa29YcVYwLU0/view

Check this out. I didn't make it, props to original author.

Zhorn
2019-01-31, 09:19 PM
ok, this is lighting a fire under my backside. have a system i'm working on and was gonna post it once it had a bit more polish, but i guess I'll just have to get onto that today since there's current interest in crafting systems.

the dot points:

Time. As Ninja_Prawn said, the time element in the base rules is a major turn off. I simplify things down to a single work week. Increase item rarity > takes longer. Higher proficiency > craft faster, or more items at a time.
Cost. Tweaked the numbers down a bit from the books. Base cost of half for mundane items is still the same, but magic items cost is tuned down somewhat. Also, the 'value' doesn't need to come strictly from gp. Monster parts, exotic materials, other magic items are all fine substitutions, just up to DM fiat on how much value they represent for the intended craft (as an example: a mundane adamantine sword would count for much more than a regular steel sword when making a +1 weapon).
Rolls. Generally avoided rolls for crafting. Just assumes that the crafting players know what they are doing. Still have proficiency dice for crafting ammunition (flat value + dice), but otherwise didn't want to have a failure potential for something that would be time and gold sink already.
Minimum levels: Tied to proficiency instead of levels. Just liked it more (looks better when in table format).


I'll edit this to have a link once I've organised it into a presentable format.
edit: and here we go
http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?579877-Adjusted-Crafting-Rules&p=23676623#post23676623

theVoidWatches
2019-01-31, 09:38 PM
Honestly, I don't think that a crafting system of any real quality would work with 5e at all. 5e has progression and balance completely separate from items - if I were to try to make a system in which crafting was important, I would want it to be the centerpiece. It might look something vaguely like this:

There's a big list of powers and abilities that you can potentially craft, each of which has a magic cost of some sort. Like, maybe making a fire sword requires you to get a handful of fire essences. Those you get by adventuring - monsters can be harvested for certain essences, and maybe you can also get some kinds of essences without fighting monsters.
To make it a so you need to actually progress and can't just grind with weak enemies, you need essences of particular quality to make stronger items. Basic fire essences from fire slugs in the basement can get you a sword that just does fire damage, but to have EXTRA fire damage you need an uncommon essence and you'll have to go after a fire monkey for that, and to have armor that makes you immune to fire you need a rare fire essence which you can harvest from lava, and blah blah blah.
So, a campaign with this system would have no level-ups for your character, at least not directly. Maybe you can learn better recipes or get bonuses to making certain kinds of items, but you're not just going to get more health or better attacking powers - you need to hunt down stuff to craft yourself better armor and such.
You wouldn't be able to just grind to have all of the best everything because you'd have a limited amount of equipable slots, and lets say that only one potion can be in effect at time.

Given that this requires some level of grinding, I feel like it would make more sense as a video game than a tabletop game. Set up a big, expansive world with different kinds of essences that you can get in different places, and have a main plot and sidequests that will require various different abilities that you get by crafting the right things.

Grod_The_Giant
2019-02-01, 09:56 AM
I... hmm. My thought is something like "crafting units," perhaps of several types or tiers, that can be earned in different ways-- adventuring, money, downtime, etc--with different levels of project would need different amounts of crafting unit. Sort of a parallel progression system...

JeenLeen
2019-02-01, 10:20 AM
I'm hesitant about the feasibility of making a good system. Every crafting system I've seen is either 1) so consuming of time or resources that it's worthless, or 2) overpowered such that no reasonable DM would allow it. Most are also overly complicated and annoying.

However, I think 5e has a good chance. Especially for crafting mundane stuff, maybe also simple potions, since gold isn't that important in 5e (e.g., can't be used to buy magic items, by the default rules). Maybe for magical.


I... hmm. My thought is something like "crafting units," perhaps of several types or tiers, that can be earned in different ways-- adventuring, money, downtime, etc--with different levels of project would need different amounts of crafting unit. Sort of a parallel progression system...

This seems a good starting point. If we want to do a real crafting system, it should be 1) fun (at least for some players), 2) worthwhile (something you can do without being a worthless PC for things that happen in D&D 5e). This probably means that specializing in crafting should not interfere terribly with combat ability or adventuring utility, since that's most of what D&D is.

The idea mentioned earlier about making crafting fun is important.

I think if the game had a built-in mechanic for downtime, this could be easier. Downtime could be spent on a number of things: working to raise money, carousing or politicing to gain influence, crafting to make supplies, etc. If the game was built with an expectation of, say, a month's downtime between adventure arcs, that could be something to plan and build around. However--while I think there might be vague references to such--it isn't really any built-in system. So I think to have crafting as a viable sub-system you'd first need a sub-system to put it into.

This 'downtime' system could have so many Points you get each downtime, perhaps modified by success of the last mission and length of downtime. You can spend gold to boost your Points, to an extent. For crafting, that gold could represent good raw materials. For carousing, spending money at a bar. For politicking, gifts to the right person.

For magic items, it might take accumulated points over a long time. But this could be represented in multiple ways, too. For crafting, you're literally making the item, spending time enchanting it, etc. For more social means, it could be making the established connections, friendships, and favors so that an organization gives you a +1 Sword with the understanding you are an ally so it's worth it to them to keep you alive.

Also, for fun, I think randomness should be fairly limited. If you spend 100 gold on a weapon, you know what you get. If you spend your Downtime Points on crafting a weapon, you should get that weapon. I can see adding some randomness, but I think anything that could make it all a wasted effort (while the other PCs get benefit from their actions) is poor taste, but how strong a distaste could vary from group to group.



Insufficient interaction between mechanical features and the crafting system. There aren't any feats for crafters, or spells that speed up crafting for example.[/LIST]


For this point: I think it should have the caveat that any feats (or similar) things spent on Crafting should be worth it. If I spend a feat on crafting instead of a feat or ASI, it better be worthwhile. Otherwise, crafting is underpowered to specialize in.

As a sample feat, I should get either a +1 to one stat and decrease in time/resources. Or something like a decrease in time/resources but something like "if you use items you crafted yourself, you gain <some mechanical benefit>.

Backgrounds are also a good place to do this.

superninja109
2019-02-01, 11:10 AM
Wow, thanks for all the responses. I think that we all, for the most part, agree that the normal crafting rules have problems of:

Not being integrated with the rest of the game
Not really worth the time
Not given enough pages in the books.
There should be more specific components.


Also, I'm seeing a divide between using Points/units as opposed to more specific components. I, personally, think units is better because it is simpler, but that's just my opinion. What do you think?

Also, some of these have included downtime or time as a resource to be spent. Zhorn, I think your times are more reasonable (maybe not realistically, but its a game and nobody will craft if the times are too long). Still, however, time isn't the best resource (and surely shouldn't be the only resource besides gold) because it is all just narrated. Things like XP you actually have to earn while time/downtime is just the DM narrating time, without actually spending anything. Also, gold is not that great of a resource because, otherwise you're just buying equipment. So, I guess it does boil down to how abstract we want the materials to be.

Also, crafting feats/class features/tool proficiencies are definitely something that would have to be integrated. I guess, we couldn't really do that without having a base system, first though.

Thanks for all the input. It would be really cool if we could even combine some of these separate ideas into somthing, but just hearing the conceptual frameworks is definitely thought-provoking.

JeenLeen
2019-02-01, 11:19 AM
I just read 1 and skimmed another of Angry GM's articles on this. He raises some neat points overall.

One big thing to this discussion is that he is describing making a AT-THE-TABLE system, that is, done actively during a game (e.g., making a potion or salve via herbology in a rush). It sounds like you are really looking for an OFF-THE-TABLE system, that is, one probably done between games (akin to leveling up, buying lots of junk, etc.)

For 5e, I definitely lean OFF-THE-TABLE for crafting qua crafting. I could see integrating something akin to using it like a Healer's Kit, though. E.g., you could do a Crafting roll to makeshift something in the middle of a scene.

Grod_The_Giant
2019-02-01, 11:29 AM
JeenLeen-- I think you're probably right about crafting needing to be a part of a broader downtime system, with resources beyond just crafting stuff. Say...

Influence Points: how much political leverage you have
Manpower Points: how many followers and employees you can rally
Magic Points: how much magic you can call on at need
Crafting Points: how much expert work and raw material you can provide

All of which can be earned slowly with just time, bought with gold, earned through adventuring ("these letters you stole are worth 2 influence" or "these dragon bones are worth 3 magic"), and exchanged for one another at, say, a 1:2 ratio...

And you pair that with tables of stuff you can "buy" using those points. Building a castle might cost 20 Manpower and 10 Crafting, getting a title 30 Influence, crafting a Common magic item 5 Crafting and 2 Magic, that sort of thing.

superninja109
2019-02-01, 12:57 PM
I just read 1 and skimmed another of Angry GM's articles on this. He raises some neat points overall.

One big thing to this discussion is that he is describing making a AT-THE-TABLE system, that is, done actively during a game (e.g., making a potion or salve via herbology in a rush). It sounds like you are really looking for an OFF-THE-TABLE system, that is, one probably done between games (akin to leveling up, buying lots of junk, etc.)

For 5e, I definitely lean OFF-THE-TABLE for crafting qua crafting. I could see integrating something akin to using it like a Healer's Kit, though. E.g., you could do a Crafting roll to makeshift something in the middle of a scene.

I was more thinking of the most recent chain of crafting articles he's done.


JeenLeen-- I think you're probably right about crafting needing to be a part of a broader downtime system, with resources beyond just crafting stuff. Say...

Influence Points: how much political leverage you have
Manpower Points: how many followers and employees you can rally
Magic Points: how much magic you can call on at need
Crafting Points: how much expert work and raw material you can provide

All of which can be earned slowly with just time, bought with gold, earned through adventuring ("these letters you stole are worth 2 influence" or "these dragon bones are worth 3 magic"), and exchanged for one another at, say, a 1:2 ratio...

And you pair that with tables of stuff you can "buy" using those points. Building a castle might cost 20 Manpower and 10 Crafting, getting a title 30 Influence, crafting a Common magic item 5 Crafting and 2 Magic, that sort of thing.

Ok. That is brilliant. Putting everything under the same mechanic would help a lot. The only problem would be making things like crafting feel like crafting and not just buying equipment.

Grod_The_Giant
2019-02-01, 01:54 PM
Ok. That is brilliant. Putting everything under the same mechanic would help a lot. The only problem would be making things like crafting feel like crafting and not just buying equipment.
Thanks. I see your point, but I can't think of a good way around it. D&D is, at its core, a cycle of "go on adventures, get reward, level up, repeat." Crafting, especially a system like yours or mine that depends on adventuring, will let you tinker with the "reward" side of things, but... <shrug> You could put in skill checks, but given the d20's randomness that's probably not the best idea. And repeated skill checks ("roll to smelt the steel, roll to forge it into a sword, roll to enchant it...") are dull and meaningless in practice.

JeenLeen
2019-02-01, 01:59 PM
Ok. That is brilliant. Putting everything under the same mechanic would help a lot. The only problem would be making things like crafting feel like crafting and not just buying equipment.

That is a serious issue, I admit. But I can't really think of a crafting system that wouldn't break down to mechanics, which basically becomes resource management. The resource of Time or Poltiical Favors might not feel like a resource, at least to a lot of players or as intuitively as GP is, but it definitely is one. I can't think of a good way to mitigate this.

Maybe you can off-set this by RPing some of the system. You could RP (and get a minor mechanical benefit) stuff like setting up your workshop, or currying favor, etc... sort of like Stunts in Exalted 2nd edition (very different mechanically, but for an idea of "RP-good = mechanical bonus"). However, this has the bad side effect of effectively penalizing players who don't want to RP such. That's fine if you make the Downtime Subsystem an integral part of the game and the players enjoy it, but such is probably not the case for the average D&D 5e gaming group.

There's also the issue that, if someone enjoys RPing and others don't, you probably have at least one player wanting to skip the boring downtime stuff and just move on to the action/real plot. But that's not fair to the players to want to play Downtime. ....so maybe it's just the Downtime Subsystem should be an optional part that you only do if all the players enjoy it? Or, at least, if those who don't enjoy it aren't bothered by the others using it?

Expectations are a big deal, and having it figured out helps a lot.
It reminds me of one game I was in where one player wanted to RP selling the loot we found to the local shopkeep, whereas I wanted to just move on to the next action. I even (quite sincerely meaning to be helpful) typed up an Excel sheet of what all we found and the gold we could expect, split evenly between the team. I was surprised when it was poorly received, but realized afterwards it was simply of misunderstanding of expectations.

Kane0
2019-02-01, 09:06 PM
Grod do you play Settlers of Catan by any chance?

Grod_The_Giant
2019-02-01, 09:19 PM
Grod do you play Settlers of Catan by any chance?
I do have a large shelf of board games, yes, why do you ask? :smalltongue:

(I was also drawing from Exalted 3e's crafting rules, which have... well, more problems than not, really, but they're where the idea of different currencies came from.)

Ninjadeadbeard
2019-02-01, 10:54 PM
My step-by-step guide to crafting:


Xanathar's has crafting rules.
City and Wild (DM's Guild) has additional crafting rules.
Homebrewing materials isn't hard (I add materials and quality levels all the time).
The Sane Magic Item Price Guide is perfect for balancing out individual item prices.
Mix and match to perfection.


Seriously, don't overthink it. 5e is meant to be simple.

Zhorn
2019-02-02, 10:45 PM
My step-by-step guide to crafting:


Xanathar's has crafting rules.
City and Wild (DM's Guild) has additional crafting rules.
Homebrewing materials isn't hard (I add materials and quality levels all the time).
The Sane Magic Item Price Guide is perfect for balancing out individual item prices.
Mix and match to perfection.


Seriously, don't overthink it. 5e is meant to be simple.

This is the basic approach I took with my edits, just took the tables already in the books and alters to taste. As awesome a fully constructed ground up approach would be, I feel that's more the realm of video games than it is for tabletop. It's in the downtime activities, so keep it at a downtime level of complexity.

DM: "Ok gang, you've finished the dungeon and returned to town, what would you like to do?"
Wizard: "I'd like a few days to scribe all these new spells into my spellbook"
DM: "Ok, we'll run a few days of downtime for that. Who has things they would like to do while that's happening"
Bard: "I'll do some carousing. See if I can pick up some rumors about our current quests, maybe gamble some gold while I'm at it"
Paladin: "I've got the Sage background, I'll do some research to find out any clues about the old castle we found that map to"
Druid: "I've got that hide we skinned from that giant lizard monster. It was resistant to fire and lightning, right? I want to make some resistant armor"
DM: "Ok, over the course of about 5 days..." *queue descriptive montage for a couple of minutes, run the relevant skill checks, then return to the campaign proper*

Again, I see the appeal in collecting points and units from killing monsters and doing quests, but that's going to take a bit of work to assign a point cost to a large amount of items, which essentially boils down to gold pieces under a different name. Leave it a little bit nebulous and then let the players improvise how they go about the broad strokes of crafting.

Indigo Knight
2019-02-03, 04:56 AM
Also, I'm seeing a divide between using Points/units as opposed to more specific components.
Making the system so it would take into account every type and subtype of raw material and what's available in the market and what I am familiar with and what can be salvaged is a very heavy drain on player's mental bookkeeping. It turns the fun to a chore. I think it's best to stay at abstract universal numbers.



Also, some of these have included downtime or time as a resource to be spent.Time invested should be a resource that is needed to be manage. Scribing might take no more then A day, but making a suit of armor will take way more.



Also, crafting feats/class features/tool proficiencies are definitely something that would have to be integratedI'm not in favor of such a thing. Feats and abilities are a resource more dedicated for fights and encounters. Using them for crafting will create a cannibalizing of the characters power. Best case scenario, those will be discarded the same as Skill Focus (appraise). I could be convinced otherwise, though



I just read 1 and skimmed another of Angry GM's articles on this. He raises some neat points overall.Link?



Xanathar's has crafting rules.
City and Wild (DM's Guild) has additional crafting rules.
Homebrewing materials isn't hard (I add materials and quality levels all the time).
The Sane Magic Item Price Guide is perfect for balancing out individual item prices.
Mix and match to perfection.This doesn't mean anything to me. Especially the Mix and match part.



I feel that's more the realm of video games than it is for tabletop. It's in the downtime activities, so keep it at a downtime level of complexity.
An excellent point.
Doesn't mean we can't aspire to have a better mechanics (without overcomplicating it).


------------------------------------


@superninja109, this is what I have so far for myself:




Choose an item to craft.
Calculate two numbers: DC for crafting such item (from the simple up to the complex). Amount of work (from the smallest item to the massive project).
Every day, the party either is busy or not – if they are, they have only one downtime (usually the evening) so roll only 1 time a craft attempt. If they're free then they can roll up to (random number) 4 times the craft.
Roll dice for craft. If above DC, add the difference. If below DC, subtract the difference.
Reach target amount? Work is done, item is ready. Reach lower then 0? Project was unsuccessful.
Instead of bonuses and penalties for craft roll, bonus is use more dice choose highest, penalty is roll more dice choose lowest.
Consider location. Working on metal requires a forge. Carving wood is possible to do on the go.

Ninjadeadbeard
2019-02-04, 02:36 AM
This doesn't mean anything to me. Especially the Mix and match part.

It's really not that hard to understand.


Xanathar's has crafting rules.

There are crafting rules already in existence.


City and Wild (DM's Guild) has additional crafting rules.

There are some really GOOD homebrew crafting rules that amend the official ones.


Homebrewing materials isn't hard (I add materials and quality levels all the time).

Additionally, homebrewing interesting or unique materials for your world isn't difficult. Like, I allow my players to craft Adamantine Armor and Weapons. Armor typically costs the item's price plus 500gp. Weapons cost the item's price plus an additional 800gp, since I let Adamantine weapons crit on 19 and that still shouldn't be cheap. I also do charts for Mithril weapons as well as other unique materials depending on the setting. Case in point, I have a set of Masterwork Levels and Item Materials and their associated costs. Just go with Xanathar's crafting rules otherwise. (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?578268-Yakkaida-A-Sengoku-Jidai-Inspired-Campaign-Setting)


The Sane Magic Item Price Guide is perfect for balancing out individual item prices.

I would always recommend looking for the "Sane Magic Item Price Guide (https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8XAiXpOfz9cMWt1RTBicmpmUDg/view)" developed by Inconnunom here on the forums and featured on, I think, the DM's Guild site. It's a great resource for rebalancing how the game prices items, and I never do without. It works with the above guides and official rules very well with some common sense by the GM.


Mix and match to perfection.

Pretty much what it says on the tin. Mix. Und. Match. Take the rules that work and leave the ones that you don't like. My major point here would be not to overthink crafting and just make life easier for yourself. If someone else has done the hard work, steal that work for your own table.


This is the basic approach I took with my edits, just took the tables already in the books and alters to taste. As awesome a fully constructed ground up approach would be, I feel that's more the realm of video games than it is for tabletop. It's in the downtime activities, so keep it at a downtime level of complexity.

This, basically.

clash
2019-02-04, 09:31 AM
This may have been mentioned already, but I do crafting as a long rest activity rather than a downtime activity. Similar to smithing in DQ11. Basically there is a gold value for how much you can craft per long rest, and you can make progress on an item or craft an item less than the gold value. Then the more you improve at crafting, the higher the gold value becomes.

SkipSandwich
2019-02-04, 04:55 PM
i'm working on a craft system right now.

So far I have a base crafting time equal to 1 hour + 1 hour per 10gp of base cost (time for 1 weapon, armor or shield, 20 arrows/bolts/bullets or 50 blowgun needles). Characters with Expertise in a relevant tool craft in half the normal time.

Items are divided into ranks, with Rank 0 being mundane equipment, Rank 1 being minor magical items(required character level 5th), Rank 2 being moderate magical items(required character level 11th) and Rank 3 being powerful magical items(required character level 17th)

There is a list of equipment properties you can upgrade items with via crafting, Upgrading to Rank 1 is 1,000gp - base item cost (or + base item cost if creating from scratch), Rank 2 is +4,000gp, and Rank 3 is +16,000gp.

Enhanced (+1): Weapons and ammo gain a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls, armor and shields gain a +1 bonus to AC.
Resist(Piercing/Slashing/Bludgeoning): Armors and Shields only, choose one of the following damage types: Slashing, Piercing or Bludgeoning, the armor or shield grants Resistance to that damage type when worn.
Sharp (19-20): Piercing or Slashing weapons and ammo only, weapon scores a critical hit on a roll of 19-20.
Deadly (Critical +1): Piercing or Bludgeoning weapons and ammo only, weapon rolls +1 additional die of damage on a critical hit.
Jagged (+1d6): Slashing or Bludgeoning weapons and ammo only, weapon deals an extra +1d6 Piercing damage on hit.
Auto-Loader (basic): Ranged weapons with the Loading property only, weapon gains a fixed magazine capable of holding up to 10 units of ammunition at a time, so long as ammo remains in the magazine, you may attack with the weapon as if it did not have the Loading property. You may load a single unit of ammo as an object interaction, or fully reload the magazine as an Action. As a special Action you may discharge all 10 units of ammunition at once in order to mimic the effects of Conjure Barrage cast as a 3rd level spell, with a Dexterity Saving Throw DC of 10.
Long-Hafted (+5ft): Two-Handed melee weapons only, weapon gains +5ft reach but cannot target spaces within 5ft of the wielder.
Aerodynamic (x1.5): Melee weapons and ammunition only, A melee weapon gains the Thrown (range 20/60) property if it did not already possess it, throwing weapons and ammo increase their base range by +50% (20/60 becomes 30/90 and so on).
Fire Shot (basic): Ammunition only, the ammunition has a small cavity filled with alchemical fire, on a hit, the target is set alight and takes 1d4 fire damage at the start of each of their turns. A creature can end this damage by using its action to make a DC 10 Dexterity save to extinguish the flames.
Acid Shot (basic): Ammunition only, the ammunition has a small cavity filled with acid, causing it to deal +1d6 acid damage on hit.
Poison Shot (basic): Ammunition only, the ammunition has a small cavity filled with poison, a target hit with this ammo must succeed on a DC 10 CON save or take 1d8 poison damage and become Poisoned for 1 round.
Holy Shot (basic): Ammunition only, the ammunition has a small cavity filled with Holy Water, causing it to deal an extra 1d8 radiant damage to undead and fiends on hit.
Rush Order (-1): You purposely cut corners to reduce costs (and as a result, the required crafting time), Weapons and ammo suffer a -1 penalty to attack and damage rolls, armor and shields suffer a -1 penalty to AC, final item cost is divided by 2. If you choose this property you may also choose to apply any one other Rank 1 property and gain it's benefits as well.


equipment with the above properties can be crafted by any character via the use of alchemy and taking advantage of special material properties, such as those of Mithril, Adamantine or Dragonscale. As such you do not have to be a spellcaster to craft a "simple" magic sword +1, but you do need the assistance of one in order to craft say, a Flame Brand.

You can craft up to 8 hours per day of downtime without penalty, or up to 12 hours per day by working overtime, at the cost of a level of exhaustion at the end of each day of work.

Tvtyrant
2019-02-04, 07:34 PM
I would have the character pick out an item of appropriate rarity of the tier or 2 of the tier below it or three of the tier below that at level up. This is explained as being what you were constructing in your free time during the time you were adventuring for that level, and helpfully gets done just at the right time.

So a level 20 Fighter can get a rare magic sword he worked on each night beating a meteor he found in a dungeon, or the cleric completes his healing wand at level 7 that he carved from sacred wood and the heart string of the dragon they just killed.

Indigo Knight
2019-02-07, 03:54 AM
It's really not that hard to understand.
I'm probably one of the more problematic kids in school, because I'm having difficulty understanding the above.


There are crafting rules already in existence.
There are some really GOOD homebrew crafting rules that amend the official ones.
Sure, but I don't remember everything I've read here. And I'm not that impressed with the core. So, if anything is of importance to the thread, I'd like to know and be directed to it, so that I could refer to it in the topic.


I would always recommend looking for the "Sane Magic Item Price Guide (https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8XAiXpOfz9cMWt1RTBicmpmUDg/view)" developed by Inconnunom here on the forums and featured on, I think, the DM's Guild site. It's a great resource for rebalancing how the game prices items, and I never do without. It works with the above guides and official rules very well with some common sense by the GM.Bookmarked.

Man_Over_Game
2019-02-07, 03:24 PM
I did a lot of work into coming up with a worthwhile crafting solution a couple years ago, even did a lot of research using the construction times of plate vs. half plate vs. other armors in comparison to their costs and how that worked in a crafting system. The whole shebang. Unfortunately, I lost all that information, but even if I had it, my experience has told me that it had no place in 5e.

There's a lot of problems with the official crafting rules, but the two biggest concerns of ANY crafting in an RPG is:


Making sure it doesn't slow down the game.
Making sure it doesn't become strictly better than anything else you could be doing.



We cannot, for instance, say that a Fighter With Crafting is better than a Fighter without Crafting, and so we should really avoid adding permanent improvements of any kind with a crafting system. No upgrades, few items, and most of the things you get from crafting should be consumable.

The reason official crafting is terrible in 5e is to fit within those two bullets. Someone who crafts could instead be adventuring, and earn the money they'd need to buy the item they want, and you cannot craft things you cannot buy.

OP's example does make it really simple, but the concern is that making something like "Dragon"-Anything relevant is pretty difficult to utilize. There will be few examples of items that would require specifically a Dragon. An alternative solution would just be to have materials using very generic tags, using the CR to represent a combination of quantity and quality.

For example, Red Dragon hide might fall under "Flesh, Fireproof, Tough, Magical, CR 15". When you craft something, it has a list of simple requirements, something akin to:


Fireproof 2, Magical 5. Since the Red Dragon Hide falls into the Fireproof category, you can take 2 of your Red Dragon Hide capacity needed for the potion, and use another 5 for the Magical portion. The quantity you had was 15 (from the CR of the creature), now reduced to 8. However, if you also had some magical herb with Healing and Magical, you could just get the 2 needed for the Fireproof portion of the spell from your Hide and use the remaining 5 needed for the Magical portion of the crafting from the herb.

A mix and match system that uses what people have on hand to make improvised potions. I'd probably rule that duplicating a spell effect (in this case, something akin to Burning Hands) should take about 5x the level of the spell.

Kane0
2019-02-07, 06:29 PM
It's hard to decide whether to go specific or abstract, but I like the idea of making a gameplay loop where you go on adventures to get crafting resources which you then look forward to crafting with which in turn you look forward to using in further adventures. Similar to XCOM I suppose?

So it would have to be a resource management system, but base it on the entire party rather than individuals and have it work in the background so adventuring doesn't grind to a halt while you wait for your +2 sword to finish baking. Then it's a matter of crunching numbers.

Spitballing here, but how about you have a party craft capacity which is the combined number of all contributing party members (maybe use prof bonus or a different stat modifier each). Then you have say five different resources to manage (Currency, Alchemical Reagents, Magical Reagents, Raw Materials, Worked Materials). Each item requires A: a recipe or other means of knowing how to create, B: the correct resources, C: enough space taken out of the craft capacity and D: time. That last one doesn't necessarily need to be time doing nothing else, crafting doesn't get in the way of adventuring. A recipe may also require specific things for added difficulty, left up to the DM with some guidelines.

AS a DM you can provide materials as part of standard adventuring rewards (loot or otherwise) and as a PC your crafting ability progresses with your character without taking away from other aspects. This also provides a useful gold sink to the party and as the infamous quote goes, a series of interesting decisions.

rel
2019-02-08, 05:13 AM
I think magic items being rare; fits 5e so I would limit a crafting system to mundane objects and maybe potions, scrolls and similar consumables.
Although I prefer to use alchemy to represent that.

I'd handle it as follows:

1) player describes what they want to make out of what supplies using what tools.
This should in no way be limited to items that happen to be in the equipment list. If you want to make a rope bridge or a grappling gun or some interesting piece of alchemy that's fine.

2) GM decides if it is possible (alchemical fire resistance from red dragon blood sure. potion of flight out of sticks and chewing gum no)

3) GM assigns a DC (based on complexity but also on tools and materials used)

4) GM assigns a crafting time (again based on item, tools and materials but keep it SHORT. minutes to hours for one off item to solve a single problem, hours to days for a permanent piece of kit)

5) Player rolls. On a success an item is created.
If you are not tracking time and resources then a failure should represent and item with some quirk or flaw that makes using it harder or more interesting.

Final note: There should be a real distinction in the effort to make a consumable item vs a permanent item, the former should be easy enough for adventurers to pull off in the dungeon using found detritus.
If the rogue cannot fashion a set of lockpicks out of the rat skeleton in the corner and scraps of cloth from his tunic in 10 minutes you need to adjust your DC's and crafting times.

Grod_The_Giant
2019-02-08, 11:17 AM
So... here's a slightly more detailed sketch of my idea. The key would be DM buy-in, probably, allowing players to actively quest for resources.


1 week of downtime is 1 Time Increment. At the beginning of the week, you declare what you're working on; at the end of the week, you make an ability check to determine how many Resource Points you acquire, with a result based on your roll and your level; something like so. You can also buy them-- 1 RP is worth about 100 gp-- or earn them during adventures (Ie, you help a noble and he gives you a quarry-- that might be worth 20 Supplies)




Level
Minimum
DC 15
DC 20
DC 30


1-4
1
2
3
4


5-10
2
4
6
8


11-16
5
10
15
20


17-20
10
20
30
40




The 5 Resource Points are Influence (gained by schmoozing, networking, carousing, spying, blackmail, etc), Manpower (gained by recruiting, making allies, etc), Magic (gained by labwork, visiting magical locations, harvesting magic plants/creatures, etc), and Supplies (gained by farming, mining, trading, etc).
To accomplish something during downtime, you must spend its cost in RP, and a number of weeks equal to the total number of RP spent.

Some examples being...


Item
Influence
Manpower
Magic
Supplies


Cargo Ship

5

2


Castle
25
25

50


Engineering Project, Major

250

500


Engineering Project, Minor

10

20


Engineering Project, Moderate

50

100


Flying Ship

10
50
10


Magic Item, Common


1



Magic Item, Uncommon


5



Magic Item, Very Rare


250



Manor

5

5


Rare Magic Item


50



Title (Baron)
100





Title (Count)
50





Tower Keep
10
10

25


Warship
5
10

5

theVoidWatches
2019-02-08, 02:03 PM
I generally like what Grod is doing, but I think it might be a little too abstracted. I think that there should be subcategories to those Resource Points - some projects could need generic resource points for which anything of the appropriate type can work, while others would need something of the exact right type - when you acquire Resource Points they might be of a specific type (which can only be used for their specific type or for a generic requirement) or a rare generic Resource Point that can be used for anything. Subcategories could include

Influence (Nobility), Influence (Commoners), Influence (Merchants)

Manpower (Craftsmen), Manpower (Laborers), Manpower (Soldiers)

Magic (Fire), Magic (Transmutation), Magic (Divine)

Supplies (Food), Supplies (Stone), Supplies (Animals)

So building a castle, which you have as Influence 25, Manpower 25, and Supplies 50, might specifically require Influence (Nobility) 25, Manpower (Laborers) 25, and Supplies (Stone) 50. You pay for it using Influence (Nobility) 20 and Influence 5, Manpower (Laborers) 25, and Supplies 50.

Meanwhile, killing a dragon might give you Magic (Fire) 20, Magic 5, and Influence 15 - harvest it for the fire magic that's a part of it as well as some more generic magic, and it gives you generic influence because everyone is in favor of killing dragons.

I'm thinking of this sort of like in Magic, where you have the 5 colors of mana, and cards will call for a mix of specific types of mana and generic mana that can be paid by any mana type, as well as having some cards which give you mana of no particular type.

Grod_The_Giant
2019-02-08, 03:28 PM
I generally like what Grod is doing, but I think it might be a little too abstracted. I think that there should be subcategories to those Resource Points - some projects could need generic resource points for which anything of the appropriate type can work, while others would need something of the exact right type - when you acquire Resource Points they might be of a specific type (which can only be used for their specific type or for a generic requirement) or a rare generic Resource Point that can be used for anything.
On the one hand, I absolutely see where you're coming from. On the other hand... if you have 4 resource types each with 5 subcategories plus a generic, you're up to (effectively) 24 different resources to deal with, and the abstraction is starting to break down. Adding a few more resource types to the list might work, I guess. Maybe also say larger projects need a seed that has to be obtained through actual questing? Like, you can't craft a Flametongue without something magical and fire-y, and you can't buy a Barony without some sort of royal favor. That starts getting to GM turf, though.

Subcategories could include

Influence (Nobility), Influence (Commoners), Influence (Merchants)

Manpower (Craftsmen), Manpower (Laborers), Manpower (Soldiers)

Magic (Fire), Magic (Transmutation), Magic (Divine)

Supplies (Food), Supplies (Stone), Supplies (Animals)

So building a castle, which you have as Influence 25, Manpower 25, and Supplies 50, might specifically require Influence (Nobility) 25, Manpower (Laborers) 25, and Supplies (Stone) 50. You pay for it using Influence (Nobility) 20 and Influence 5, Manpower (Laborers) 25, and Supplies 50.

Meanwhile, killing a dragon might give you Magic (Fire) 20, Magic 5, and Influence 15 - harvest it for the fire magic that's a part of it as well as some more generic magic, and it gives you generic influence because everyone is in favor of killing dragons.

I'm thinking of this sort of like in Magic, where you have the 5 colors of mana, and cards will call for a mix of specific types of mana and generic mana that can be paid by any mana type, as well as having some cards which give you mana of no particular type.[/QUOTE]

Kane0
2019-02-08, 04:03 PM
My question is how do you build a system that properly handles mundane items, magical items and construction projects? It might be out of scope for one simplified mechanic.

PhoenixPhyre
2019-02-08, 06:00 PM
My question is how do you build a system that properly handles mundane items, magical items and construction projects? It might be out of scope for one simplified mechanic.

Right. Especially since some mundane items are individual projects, while most construction projects are community efforts.

I'd rather have a mostly-hand-waved crafting system than one that pretends to cover everything but is jarring or complex.

Grod_The_Giant
2019-02-08, 09:58 PM
Right. Especially since some mundane items are individual projects, while most construction projects are community efforts.

I'd rather have a mostly-hand-waved crafting system than one that pretends to cover everything but is jarring or complex.
Yeah, it's a tricky one. You need just enough hoops to jump through that it feels like you're accomplishing something, but not so many that you start playing Spreadsheets and Statistics. Where to PUT those hoops, what part of the system gets fleshed out and what gets hand-waved, will depend on what part of the process you want to emphasize.

To me, it seems like "crafting" can be broken down into two steps: acquiring the resources, and the physical act of creation. ("crafting time" is irrelevant; it's two parts verisimilitude to one part balance)

Of the two, I think the first is inherently more interesting. It's very, very hard to make a compelling mechanic out of "turning a lump of iron into a sword." I sure can't think of anything, even if you were willing to switch to a totally unrelated board game.

D&D has traditionally leaned on the first phase, then: acquiring resources. Generally that means gold; "500 gp worth of crafting materials," after all, does represent all the rare magical reagents and special tools and workspaces and so on and so on.

The most basic sort of crafting system thus becomes "spend x gold and y time and get z item." Which isn't bad; it's simple, it's easy to connect to purchasing stuff directly, and it's easy to ad-hoc weird cases.

The next step is to make the resource more complicated. "You need x gold and y, but also special resource z." Which requires you to decide how to abstract z-- anything from "DM's call" to "here's a giant table of what components match what item."

My resource point idea was meant as a sort of compromise. It gives you some granularity, some sense that different things get you different resources that create different things, while still being pretty easy to say "you need five of this and two of that."

PhoenixPhyre
2019-02-09, 08:04 AM
Yeah, it's a tricky one. You need just enough hoops to jump through that it feels like you're accomplishing something, but not so many that you start playing Spreadsheets and Statistics. Where to PUT those hoops, what part of the system gets fleshed out and what gets hand-waved, will depend on what part of the process you want to emphasize.

To me, it seems like "crafting" can be broken down into two steps: acquiring the resources, and the physical act of creation. ("crafting time" is irrelevant; it's two parts verisimilitude to one part balance)

Of the two, I think the first is inherently more interesting. It's very, very hard to make a compelling mechanic out of "turning a lump of iron into a sword." I sure can't think of anything, even if you were willing to switch to a totally unrelated board game.

D&D has traditionally leaned on the first phase, then: acquiring resources. Generally that means gold; "500 gp worth of crafting materials," after all, does represent all the rare magical reagents and special tools and workspaces and so on and so on.

The most basic sort of crafting system thus becomes "spend x gold and y time and get z item." Which isn't bad; it's simple, it's easy to connect to purchasing stuff directly, and it's easy to ad-hoc weird cases.

The next step is to make the resource more complicated. "You need x gold and y, but also special resource z." Which requires you to decide how to abstract z-- anything from "DM's call" to "here's a giant table of what components match what item."

My resource point idea was meant as a sort of compromise. It gives you some granularity, some sense that different things get you different resources that create different things, while still being pretty easy to say "you need five of this and two of that."

I've always handled crafting by letting NPCs do it for most things. But that's because my players want to be out doing things, not back at home making things. They'd rather abstract it as "OK, since you did him a solid he'll make something nice for you. What do you want?" with maybe turning monster parts into items (a cloak made out of a cloaker skin featured heavily in one campaign). Those were just fully abstracted, with NPCs doing the work.

The only time the PCs wanted to make something themselves was repairing a construct NPC to serve as a follower/party mascot. There I required a sacrifice of a significant item (a soul stone containing the freely-given souls of some people) as a power source but abstracted everything else.

So what I'm trying to say is that I don't think that a crafting system has to be anything formal. More just a DM being willing to give the reins to other people and abstracting the results.

But then again I'm on the far side of the "don't bog down my game with more resource management or table-time consumption mechanics" spectrum. Fast moving, free-flowing play is near the top of my priority list.

Indigo Knight
2019-02-11, 10:56 AM
The massive amount of different types of materials that can be charted up as raw resources, limits the feasibility of implementing a system with high number of varying items and currencies. That's the strong point of computer games. It would be very hard to try to translate that system to PnP. I can see it being done with rewriting the Monster Manuals as to accommodate a line for "loot". Yet, even then, it's tough and unrewarding (I think).


As for the scope of the craft – I can see a gaming evening played around creating a huge project, e.g. building an airship. But mostly crafting is for tiny or small knick-knacks. Improvised lock picking, extra arrows, splicing magical golems, repairing or jury rigging items. That kind of thing.



To me, it seems like "crafting" can be broken down into two steps: acquiring the resources, and the physical act of creation.
Well, the crafting is the skill check (or dice roll). The acquiring can be done by any means; gathering skill checks, RP theater, a Quest.



The next step is to make the resource more complicated. "You need x gold and y, but also special resource z." Which requires you to decide how to abstract z-- anything from "DM's call" to "here's a giant table of what components match what item."
Yeah. I second that. That's one of the question to ask. While keeping in mind that there is a limit to how much players can be encumbered with charts and lists. So, whatever resources are chosen, I wouldn't pass 5... 6... 10 tops.


There this old thread made by this amazing guy, about designing rpg. Here's a link to a part regarding crafting.
I'd welcome anyone to take a look: https://www.therpgsite.com/showthread.php?21479-Design-Alternatives-Analysis-Archive/page6&p=499692#post499692