Am I Missing Something About Leveling Crafting?

I came back to the game several months ago, after taking years off. I always liked crafting, and especially enjoyed having every profession at max level on at least one character. I have some max level characters now, and I have been doing as many crafting quests as I can find on some of them, but they’re all kind of stuck.

The profession knowledge stuff trickles in extremely, extremely slowly, and every profession that makes things seems to hit a wall at skill level 50, at which point I suspect you’re intended to skill up using Crafting Orders, but 100% of those seem to be either people posting orders using your mats and tipping far below the AH value for the mats and product, or end game BiS type stuff that requires higher skill and more professional knowledge to craft at the level people seem to expect, if you even have the recipe at all.

I know it’s late in the expansion so I never expected to make any gold with professions, but historically it’s always seemed like materials get so cheap at the end that it’s easy to powerlevel the professions. Now it all seems to be gated behind multiple barriers: Weekly lockouts, artisan’s mettle, knowledge points, occasionally cooldowns, and occasionally Bind-on-Pickup vs Bind-on-Equip stuff. Oh, and some recipes are still RNG or gated by reputation, as always.

So that’s at least 5 different things limiting your ability to develop your professions. I feel like I’m missing something because that doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. What good does it do to make professions take months to level? Allow crafters to differentiate themselves and cover different niches early in the expansion?

I’m hoping I just overlooked something silly. Maybe some kind of catch-up mechanic?

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I was able to get LW up to 60 before hitting the same wall. Gave up on ever getting beyond that. Not a well thought out system.

You could maybe get some skill points via Darkmoon Faire but that’s also slow.

The only one that really requires crafting orders is Leatherworking, all the other ones have ways to get there through rep patterns or reasonably accessible knowledge recipes. On the knowledge front, make sure you’re getting all the knowledge points every week. Enchanting, Alchemy and Engineering can get 11 points a week (though have smaller knowledge trees) and the rest of the crafting ones get 15 points a week. There are also a LOT of one time sources from reps, world treasures and first crafts. Make sure you’ve gotten those as well.

Thanks for the tip. I think I’ve been getting them all so far but I didn’t know the hard numbers.

I tallied up the points required to max out the Engineering tree and got 525. I’m not the best at math so some of this is likely not accurate, but my napkin work suggests that’s about 48 weeks of getting 11 points per week. But, like you said, there are also one-time sources.
I know you can get:

  • +5 and +10 knowledge from 2 factions on each profession
  • +10 from a hidden master for each profession
  • +3 from 14 different engineering treasures in the game now

If that’s right, that’s 15+15+10+42 = 82 knowledge points.
Which brings 525 points down to 443, which would take about 41 weeks to get. With the rare Dragon Shard of Knowledge, and the fact that you’ll otherwise be spending 10 months slowly unlocking this stuff, maybe you can do it with as little as 400 points from the weekly sources, taking only 37 weeks, or about 9 months.

I also counted about 106 DF Engineering recipes in total. Assuming each one grants a knowledge point for the first time you craft it, and ignoring how some of them are rare drops, require rep grinds, require deep knowledge point investments, or are very expensive to purchase, that takes our 400 point requirement down to 294, which should take about 27 weeks, or just under 7 months.

Throw in 3 points from the Darkmoon Faire per month and you shave 6 months and 3 weeks down to 6 months and 2 weeks.

I very well may have missed something or made a mistake somewhere, but it seems like it’s a 6+ month investment if those are the only ways to level up a profession. That seems wild to me. I don’t get what that adds to the game. If I had seen these numbers before I picked the game back up again I’m pretty sure I would have just not bothered.

I would have asked myself, “If this is what crafting looks like, where else have they inserted long time gates?” When games start trying to stretch content with lengthy time gates, that’s usually a very bad sign of things to come. That’s a significant step down the path of the hyper-monetized mobile phone game style of design that seeks to squeeze the maximum amount of money out of players for the lowest development cost possible.

Teams like those behind Baldur’s Gate 3 and Palworld have gotten a lot of praise lately for explicitly not designing their games to be long-term commitments that demand you periodically come back to do menial tasks or limited-time events, so it’s a shame to see Blizzard going in the opposite direction.

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There’s a couple misc points, but yeah it’s about 6 months. It’s also 6 months to fully max a profession, not to be useful or profitable. Most professions have access to useful things in the first 200-300 points. If we take engineering as an example, for the bracers you can max them out with 265 points. On the maximum end, the explosives section is basically all flavor, as the bombs aren’t very useful this expansion, so you can take 130 points off right there.

With more a more traditional crafting profession like leatherworking, you can get max in leather or mail boots with 140 points, and further items are fewer points, because you’ve already gotten some of the pre-requirements for the other items when you get them for boots. Then at the end of the grind, the tier slot items are requested an order of magnitude less than the non tier slot items (with the exception of the flaring cowl in season 1), so you could stop 200 points away from max leatherworking and not impact your income all that much.

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It’s a painful system to come into late. But the hardest part imo is not being able to refund your points if you make a mistake. I’ve definitely put points into things expecting them to give skill bonuses to crafts they didn’t.

The lack of clarity about how to concentrate your early points for maximum value is a painful curve.

This is a useful resource if you want to min/max your weekly points:

https://www.reddit.com/r/woweconomy/comments/zob9wg/weekly_knowledge_up_crafters_lootables_guide/

I could give some tips for enchanting and JC if applicable, but I’m not really sure how to make a steady profit with the others.

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To check all KP available, both one time and repeatable, it is best to use Profession knowledge weakaura. It does not show available profession books with factions, Niffen and Artisan Consortium.

Something to consider is what do you want out of the profession. There’s never a need to max out KP on a profession other than just because one wants to for the sake of completion or OCD. It doesn’t give any major advantages in the market, it doesn’t make getting skill to 100 easier (in both cases a targeted approach to KP is better). The skill UI is wide instead of deep, so its pretty quick to get to a point where you can make either gold or finish skill to 100 (all of my alts hit 100 really early in my profession knowledge jaunt).

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Nah, I really am a completionist about it. I want everything out of the profession if I’m going to invest time in it. If I dump hours of time and energy and resources that could be spent on anything else, especially stuff that’s actually more fun, then in my mind I had better be able to enjoy the perks of my profession. I should not be forced to settle, especially when you don’t know what you’ll need if you don’t waste hours outside of the game researching!

For example, I leveled a leatherworker expecting that I’d be able to make some useful armor just by default. Because that’s leatherworking. Imagine my surprise when it turns out all the decent armor is its own specialization that requires tons of points and excludes nearly everything else I might want, like a bow since my LWer is a Hunter.

Likewise, I leveled an engineer and first found that I didn’t have any good way to get scrap despite having unlocked a tree for using scrap, which I had assumed would give me scrap! Nope! I had to go invest in explosives and tinkers so I could do anything that generated scrap. And when I invested in tinkers, I discovered that the gear to put tinkers in requires yet another set of knowledge point investments to unlock.

And all of the cool stuff I usually loved most about engineering, like the teleporters and toys? All locked behind yet more knowledge points! What the hell are these choices?

  • “You can have scrap, but nothing to generate it.”
  • “You can have tinkers, but not the armor to put them in.”
  • “You can have armor, but can’t make the tinkers for them.”
  • “You have to choose between all of the staple engineering items like bombs and toys.”
  • “Oh, and now your bombs are just suddenly 10,000% more defective because you have to spend a ton of points making them less useless, otherwise they’ll blow up in your hand for 50k damage half the time you try to use them.”

And it all feels so arbitrarily limiting. They didn’t BUILD on crafting. They didn’t add on to what we had before. They took it away from us and packed it behind a series of time-gated doors that force you to waste months opening just to do the things you used to be able to do right away in most expansions.

I don’t feel empowered or engaged in the slightest by this system. I feel outright cheated at this point. This isn’t what I expected. And not in a good way. There are so many little kernels of good ideas in there that it’s incredibly frustrating that they put all of this work into the system and then said, “Yeah, and make it take half a year for players to actually fully unlock their professions.”

If they had made it grindable or something I’d have been thrilled with these changes. But the absolutely mind-numbingly infuriating choice to use a Dark Pattern feels hostile to me. You have to have malicious intent to use these things on players. Someone actually said, “Let’s hinder players more” and just cut our legs out from under us as if we’re supposed to pretend that crawling with just our arms is remotely the same as jogging.

I can’t think of any good reason for this to exist. Even if it’s to prevent flavor-of-the-month profession swaps, that can be accomplished with a much shorter set of time gates, or including knowledge point sources that are one-time uses that would give a character like 100 points outright, so that after you use them if you change professions you now have to wait out those 100 points.

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So you didn’t read the profession points, and that’s blizzard’s fault? The game lets you look at and read all the nodes before you choose them.

Probably not what you are going to want to hear, but…

The good news is you can eventually unlock and learn it all.

The bad news is as you’ve identified it will take months and the semi-random nature of where points belong in certain professions is kind of obnoxious.

Several sources indicate DSoKs drop more frequently until you’ve acquired somewhere between 100-200 points. Not sure if you’ve already gotten that far, but if you haven’t it can help the gain a little.

I actually sympathize for you because the system was designed to be engaged with from the beginning of the expansion where it forced each person to specialize in something, and then rely on other crafters for their other requirements until they built up enough points to branch out. Coming in late you can still catch up since it is a hard end point, but the self-reliance of being able to craft everything is still months away while those that started a while ago are complete or nearly there.

It was a dramatic change from the old system and I am not convinced they thought through the long-term effects of the change. Or maybe they did and decided they don’t care.

Most of the points you’ve raised have been brought up over the course of the expansion. And as usual some people are for them, and some are against them, using all the same logic trails that have been covered in ruts since Vanilla.

If you can bear the mental strain of being incomplete in something it seems you enjoy, I’d almost recommend ignoring professions for the rest of DF and then coming back to work on them as your play time allows during TWW when the need to complete all the points is not quite so much in the forefront of your mind.

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