Transmutation Stones: For Fun And Profit

Tiger’s snappy guide to looking awesome and ripping face.

Crafting info is out!  Now you can pick a pair of trades and indulge the arts & crafts side of your personality.  We have three trades devoted to various types of weapons, three concerning armor, and two that produce sparkles for your lovely or noms for your belly.

With every two revolutionary steps forward, ArenaNet also takes one step back into familiar MMO territory.  I say ‘familiar’ instead of something more inflammatory like ‘same old pile of stinky carp’ for a reason.  I don’t think these small steps taken back into the familiar are necessarily bad things, especially when taking into account they’re trying to entice ‘traditional’ MMO players to give them a try.

I compare the crafting system, as it was revealed, to WoW’s, but without all the obnoxious.  For example:

• You can drop a trade and take it up later without loosing all your progress.  The cost in cash will increase, however, with a higher crafting level.  This is likely meant to discourage frequent switching to game the economy. I approve.
• Gathering nodes are character specific.  So there’s no fighting over resources. No more hatin’ on me because I was a druid, I wasn’t even an herbalist!
• Gathering trades are available to everyone.  No more waiting for that one herbalist in your party to pick daisies, everyone can join.  C’mon man, time’s a-wastin’!
– This also means you can still make neat stuff without sacrificing money-making potential. Mr. Moneybags McGatherFace, I’m lookin’ at YOU!

There’s also the discovery system.  Throw down your parts and try to discover what kind of a whole they can make.  This catapults me into thoughts on Minecraft (whose crafting system I think is the bee’s knees) but I doubt it will be that representative, meaning actually putting two sticks on top of each other with a stone on top to make a stone shovel.  I have to cock my eyebrow at the discovery system itself, and agree with Ravious on this one.  If done fairly it will likely turn into a wiki list of all the awesome stuff you want.  During the first days and weeks of the game discoveries will be fun and unexpected, but as the game matures I fully expect a list of ‘must-haves’ for each trade to surface.

That said, I didn’t really mean to talk about crafting at all, but about looking good.

There’s already been hue and cry raised about the Transmutation stone system.  If you’re not familiar here’s a recap:
– You can buy Transmutation stones from the cash shop and use them to apply one armor’s (or weapon’s) stats to another armor’s (or weapon’s) skin.  If you want to be kick-ass elementalist while wearing the poofy dress you entered Divinity’s Reach in, you’ll be using Transmutation stones.
– Transmutation stones, while most reliably obtained from the cash shop as a microtransaction, can also be found in the game world.

So, here’s my evil plan:

Step 1) Create Tigerpaws McTigerface.
Step 2) Roll my roflstomp face all over Tyria until I reach max level.
Step 3-smthg) Stalk the wiki and do some serious theorycrafting (read: stand on the shoulders of those who are more intelligent than me, then ask Mr. Tigerfeet what he thinks) to design an optimal set of armor for what I want to do.
Step the next one) Blog about it.
Step the last) Search for and acquire the most visually awesomest set of armors in the game. (not plants)
Step the REALLY latest) Apply the transmutation stones I have scrimped and saved for over the course of my Tyrian journey.  Here’s hoping there will be enough.
Step continuing) /flex

So yeah, that’s what I plan to do about the Transmutation Stones kerfluffle.  I also suspect I’ll be making noms and leather armor on my Thief.  What about you?

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  • Comments (10)
    • aeronox
    • March 14th, 2011

    Ideally, I would want to find some awesome armor at a low-mid level, and transmute it along with my character’s power.

    But since transmutation stones cost money, I can’t do that. So instead I’ll likely do what you’re planning: reward my character’s awesomeness, and give him awesome armor once he’s finished levelling.

    I really wish I could do the first plan, for the same reason I still have my Starter Cane and pre-Searing Crystalline Longsword: I like items with a history and grow with me.

      • Tigerfeet
      • March 14th, 2011

      I think it really depends on how many transmat stones we’ll come across while playing. I suspect it won’t be enough to keep a skin current while leveling, but it probably will be enough to do a full set of armor and weapons once. That’s the way I’d do it anyway, you reward the players who know how to save up while allowing others to spend a little cash if they want a certain look over the course of their playtime.

      I’m really hoping they’re not very expensive, I think the inventory slots are a bit high-priced, tbh.

    • Belzan
    • March 14th, 2011

    Your posts are so gosh darn entertaining!!! Like a good nerd, I’ve already assigned crafting responsibilities to all 8 of my well thought out characters who don’t exist yet. My main (read: Belzan) will likely (with 90% certainty) be an elementalist and he’ll be making staves. That’s what he did in GW and that’s pretty much what he’ll be doin’ in GW2. There is a slight possibility, however, hey might become a jewelcrafter and hawk trinkets to the masses. Dude’s gotta eat!

      • Tigerfeet
      • March 14th, 2011

      Awww thanks so much! Did you see my post about the continuing history of my GW1 characters? I have their descendants planned out to the 3rd generation, at which time there were too many people to manage xD

      • I don’t think I’ve read that one. Time to track it down!

  1. I know you talked about this on the latest Relics episode, too, and I’ll have to agree that the discovery option behind the crafting system will be very exciting to use.
    I don’t plan on using the wiki initially, as I prefer giving myself a pat on the back for creating something impressive, rather than peeking at what others have found before me.
    Down the line though, after playing around with recipes and transmutation, I might consider looking at the wiki to see what I missed, and apply my findings to an alt – which will then inevitably become my main, naturally.

      • Tigerfeet
      • March 14th, 2011

      I’m really excited to get into the game and start tinkering with things. Back when I played WoW my favorite thing was to raid a new instance on opening night and work out how to take down a boss without knowing anything about the encounter. That whole feeling of being the first to break ground is a heady draught.

    • That’s my plan as well.

  2. I’m torn, and am waiting for the next few Race weeks before I decide on my race. Similarly, I’m waiting for the final adventurer before deciding which profession to play. I’ve played Ranger for 5 years and thats where my heart lies, but the Thief looks super-duper awesome, and if the final adventurer is some sort of Engineer/Gunner character as most people like to think (and ANet haven’t quashed) then that will be a strong contender also.

    Either way, I’ll probably go for more leathery/rag-tag armours than the flashy shiney ones. Think Nicolas the Traveler not Prince Rurik.

      • Tigerfeet
      • March 19th, 2011

      I’m the exact same way. I like the look of the Warrior’s playstyle, but dressing my character in heavy metal armors just doesn’t feel right.

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