Dragonflight Season 4 - Knowledge Catch Up Mechanic Needed

As we go into Season 4 of Dragonflight it is well past time to put in a catch up mechanic for Profession Knowledge. Without changes, it is basically impossible for new and returning players and new or under played alts to fully engage the profession systems including crafting orders.

Some simple suggestions:
Uncap Knowledge items acquired from gathering or killing mobs such as Curious Hide Scraps, Dreambloom Petal, Iridescent Ore Fragments, Decaying Phlegm, and the like. This would allow all players; new, returning, and alts, to benefit equally from engaging in game content.
An alternate version of this would be to set a cap using a system like that used for crests where a expansion long total is calculated using the existing weekly cap and drops continue until that expansion long cap is reached. However, using this alternative with the example of Mining the total knowledge available from weekly drops since the launch of Dragonflight is 560 while the total Knowledge needed to fill out the Mining specializations is 455, so completely uncapping is the simpler solution. It’s a good suggestion for the future if the Profession Knowledge system is retained.

Greatly increase the drop rate of Dragon Shard of Knowledge (and make them Bind on Account). Very similar to the first suggestion, this option would benefit new and returning players, as well as alts, equally. It also helps those most engaging in game the most.

Uncap the use of Treatise of [profession] crafted by Inscriptionists. Benefits all new, returning, and alts. Minimally engaging. Has pay to win taint due ability to use gold purchased from WoW tokens.

Make all Knowledge items Bind on Account. This only really benefits alts. While not the most ideal, it would benefit expansion long players trying to fill out their profession repertoire.

Create new purchasable Knowledge items akin to the “Dusty” items sold by Rabul in Valdrakken or the Niffen Notebooks sold by Harlowe Marl. I would encourage any new items be purchasable with Dragon Isles Supplies rather than Artisan’s Mettle, as Mettle can be a bigger barrier to new and returning players. These new items should bring players to within 70% to 80% of total Knowledge needed for a profession at the minimum.

Side notes: Skill up of professions could also be made easier and drop rate on certain very rare patterns such as the Elemental Lariat could be increased.

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I would surprised they do that but they are doubling down on the his putrid system heading into TWW.

I rather sprint far away from this obvious slow motion train wreck and then be any where close when this comes apart (already did mostly in DF).

:man_surfing: :surfing_woman:

Due to the entirely too long, agonizing grind to max out profession knowledge, if you’re able to finally max it out across both professions on your main, then you should automatically have it maxed on all your alts once they reach level 70, PERIOD! END OF STORY!

I’m not a hard core, play every day for hours on end type of player, but I did play pretty consistently this expansion week to week, and it literally took me a freaking year and a half to accomplish this on my main.

Without some kind of mechanic to catch up on my alts, I will not even bother to try, and let’s face it, a big part of running alts is professions. So yea, this expansion absolutely sucked for alts.

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It’s about 6 months worth of weeklies if you’re doing the 30 minutes of knowledge stuff every week. For you to take 18 months, it means you were either not doing it 2/3rds of weeks or you weren’t doing very much of the content every week.

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As an exemple, i only maxed my main last year.
Each end of an expansion, i had an habit to max level every profession on my alts.

Just now i tried to level blacksmith to 100 and guess what?
It makes me remember that you can’t even do that without going into the specialization and we all know how “well” this trash system is designed - meaning that you can’t even go back if you have done a mistake when allocating the knowledge points.

Without any catch up (even in gold), i can’t even level my professions to 100!

I don’t know how people can defend this system, but it only push away casual players.

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This system is not good for casual or hardcore players.

It is trash.

:man_surfing: :surfing_woman:

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During the time that it took me to max everything out (LW and ENG), I probably finished all the weeklies, as well as looted all the items from backpacks and mobs about 2/3-3/4 of the time, so we agree to disagree.

You are entitled to your opinion, and I will keep my own council on my personal experience.

Even if it is the six months that you suggest, that is still enough of a grind to justify an alt catch-up mechanic.

Any grind that is based on long-term, hard-core game play is too much - especially with all of the other crap out there (like all the reps they keep adding) that needed to be done.

Go e-peen somewhere else.

There’s really nothing to disagree on, it’s just simple math. For LW you can get 15 points a week. It’s 750 points to cap. Taking off the first craft points from 162 recipes, the 36 from the 12 treasures, 10 from the master, 10 from the original 4 renowns, 30 from the arisan’s consortium and 10 from the niffen buddies, you get 492, which comes out to 32.8 weeks, which is 8 months without even getting a single dragon shard. With even a modest rate of acquisition on dragon shards, 6 months is extremely reasonable.

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Overall I didn’t love or hate the system. I think it worked well enough except for the skill point progression and the high bar for keeping up with knowledge on a weekly basis.

I think my suggestion of adopting a moving cap for knowledge similar to the crest system would be a great improvement to the system that preserves the pacing for high play time players, while leaving the door open for casuals to surge improvement as their schedule allows. That proposal also does not penalize anyone for needing to miss a week or otherwise needing to attend to matters outside of Azeroth.

As for skill progression, I liked to see better access to patterns with orange rated skill up closer to 100 with less restrictive materials requirements. I focused on Leatherworking first and it ran into a huge barrier with the majority of skill improving patterns requiring Sparks of Ingenuity (3 points per craft) which were limited early on, meaning crafting orders were needed for skill up. The character I was doing this on is on a low pop server and crafting orders were few and far between. Side note: I laughed hysterically at the limit of filling 4 public crafting orders a day because I rarely even saw 4 public crafting orders posted in a week. I ended up leveling alts just to get sparks for crafting orders and crafting (the only 1 skill point per craft) profession tools just to vendor.
For my leatherworking specifically, the Awakened elements were an extra hurdle. Skinning does not yield rousing elements by default, so I had to either purchase or use alts to farm those. At least with blacksmithing, jewel crafting, alchemy, and inscription, the associated gather yielded some, if not all, the needed awakened/rousing elements need to craft skill up patterns. Tailors and enchanters also suffered from this extra hurdle.

I’m not sure it would need to be quite that aggressive, since it’s not a player power system, and a hard cap doesn’t serve the interests of either the hardcore crafters nor the casual crafters as well as you’re probably imagining.

Under the current system, assuming Blizzard gets the Dragon Shard acquistion rate correct at the start of War Within, and not the astronomically generous amount you could get at the start of the expansion, then there’s a way for more hardcore players to put more into the system and get more out of it, though obviously less efficiently than just waiting for the next weekly reset and doing the weeklies.

On the casual crafter side, that just means where they spend their points is even more important than it already was. If one of them “messes up” their spec, then they just literally have to wait extra weeks, with absolutely no prospect of fixing it before then. We kind of saw this at the start of the expansion before everyone knew how to get knowledge points, people were claiming their profession was bricked forever. Though I think the impact of messing up a spec is much less than people thought, unless they went out of their way to almost purposefully choose a bad spread, that was the conclusion that many casual crafters reached. I don’t think offering a point reset is a realistic solution here either, as that just opens a whole other can of worms that causes more problems than it solves.

Yeah, leatherworking was the odd one out as the only profession without a sparkless way to hit 100, all the other profs have some way to hit 100 without using sparks. Tailors had the fishing hat from rep, and enchanting had the illusions or weapon enchants to get to 100.

So with my proposal, the cap is regarding the drops from gathering/mob kills such as a the Dreambloom Petals and Decaying Phlegm (Herbalism and Alchemy respectively), not knowledge points. In the current system a character is only eligible for five 1 point gathering knowledge items plus one 3 point gathering knowledge item and I think it’s four 1 point crafting knowledge items as drops specific to their progressions and excluding the shards.

With how badly the shards are balanced, I would just remove them and say tough cookies to the hardcore players. Why should professions be any different than gear upgrade system. Make them wait, too bad, so sad that they don’t get to no life the game and finish the patch in a week.

Otherwise the shards could just remain the exact same as they are.

For crafting professions, that’s 4 points a week if we’re counting the mob kill drops and the dirt ones, which is 36% of the 11 weekly professions, and 27% of the 15 weekly professions. That’s not exactly going to be very effective as a catchup mechanism. Compound that with the apparent fact that the “grind” is what most players don’t like about professions, and it would probably just lead to more complaints.

Because gear upgrades are player power. Professions are not. There’s no catch up system for invincible drops, there’s not one for the waist of time or lucid nightmare, and there’s not one for the insane title. I think a far healthier version of a catchup system looks something like the X.1 and X.2 vendors selling Profession Starter Kits, that get you up to the first X points in a profession. If you’re over whatever number X is, then you don’t get anything. If X is 200 points, and you’re at 50, then you get 150 points. Most professions have pretty accessible ways to reach the highest profitability crafts already, and you don’t need to get anywhere near maxing out your tree to make significant gold.

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Profession system is staying like current for TWW?

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The length of time to max out knowledge is an absolutely abhorrent level of timegating that should never be implemented again.

If they want to keep the system then they should at least let you get 6x as much knowledge per week that would be far more acceptable.

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I’ve maxxed out all professions, so I’ll have a different take on this probably, but I thought the knowledge point pacing was good. I think the profession system on the whole had some issues, but the knowledge point system acquisition was about right for me. I was able to max at KP’s in all professions by middle of season 2 simply by doing the weekly 11-14 points (I skipped out on the forbidden reach one…too much effort/gold at the time) and doing all the one time KP increases. Usually only like 30-60mins of effort per week total across all my prof alts, which wasn’t terrible for me.

I feel like 1.5 seasons of an expansion is a pretty decent rate to max this and also liked the fact that I didn’t have to max my KP in order to engage in the market for the professions since the trees were wide (not deep). I could pick something I wanted to specialize in and focus on that while working on other spec nodes on the side.

I also liked that my alts got a really quick leg up on KP and could jump right in on a specialization because they made the KP purchases from some factions account wide unlocked.

I honestly didn’t feel like a catchup was needed. I enjoyed the grind on it, KP rewards felt meaningful when I got them. I also really liked how it actually gave identity to a lot of crafters on my server at the beginning. We knew who to go to for daggers (I was the daggers guy) or who made crit gems or who specialized in mail helms and chests, etc. It really added a unique feel to crafting.

If blizz wanted to do something on the last season (or even X.2.7 patch) of an expac to make KP gains faster, that would be fine. I’m not sure it is needed, but I think that far into an expansion it doesn’t hurt the identity aspect of the system.

3 Likes

Yeah over all I thought the system was decent. Just some late patch tweaks that could be made. Including tweaks that allow folks who join late or have issues logging in weekly to stay up on chores.

The proposal for the crest like system with KP item drops which would only let people keep pace or not fall too far behind. If weekly quests were not included, the system would still reward early and consistent play. Gathering KP would fall behind 3 KP/week and Crafting 6 KP/week (excluding Enchanting and Engineering). While still tough, it’s better than falling behind 6 and 10 KP/week for gathering and crafting, respectively.

I agree catch up mechanics are not typically called for until late into Season 2 or beginning of Season 3. And the early play was nice, though as a primary LW the grind was extra hard and I never quite gained the reputation of being a go to crafter. As we are going into Season 4 of Dragonflight now though, I do think it’s time for catch up mechanics with KP.

Something is better than nothing. After 10 weeks, that’s 40 KP, a worthwhile amount and often one major pinwheel of a specialization. It’s not a perfect solution, but it’s better than what we have, which is nothing.

Profession craft gear and better Knowledge crafts better gear. In this incarnation of profession, they are player power. Yes, one can go elsewhere and use crafting orders to get that power, so there are other options. Still it seems reasonable to have players able to catch up on self crafting or crafting for their friends.
Having no way to be relevant in professions is also just a bad game play experience for new and returning players who join late in a expac. Players just starting Dragonflight in Season 4 are being told, sorry Professions are out of reach because you weren’t here at the beginning or soon after. It’s a turn off and demotivates players to engage and is more likely to lose them before TWW launch, restarting the cycle.

It’s not all about gold. It’s about being able to have fun with the complete game. No need to only view WoW professions as a capitalist hellscape too. We have enough of that IRL.

Given how many people complain about profession knowledge due to their incorrect perception that it’s a grind, I don’t think putting in an actual grind is going to make them happier or more likely to engage with the system.

They’re not player power in the same way that something like artifacts, essences, or covenants were. In order to get the player power from those systems, you must participate in them. The fact that you can get the best crafted gear in the game without learning a profession means that they aren’t mandatory for player power. Let’s use classic era as an example: Engineering is “mandatory” for player power, while blacksmithing and alchemy are not. You cannot use goblin sapper charges unless you are an engineer, while you can equip lionheart helm or use flasks even if you are not a blacksmith or alchemist.

They’re not really out of reach though, you don’t need a fully maxed talent tree to be profitable or useful.

If they’re not trying to make or save gold, then why does it matter if it takes until the next expansion to finish up?

For players coming this late in S3/S4, it is certainly not too late to participate in professions, meaning have a useful profession in terms of making gold and/or crafting gear for themselves or others. With so many sources of KP available right now which accumulated thru seasons, anyone can have useful profession.

Problem is some players dont want to ask for help here or seek for help on other discord/forums, 3rd party videos. They just dont want to learn and are unwilling to accept profession changes, praising for going back to old.
Only completionists wanting to fill all KP trees asap will have a problem, they dont have time for that before end of DF.
Personally, if I was a completionist, I wouldnt even start game huge as WoW this late in expansion, this is MMO, long-time commitment game, not CoD or Fortnite.

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Baloney, its a grind in every sense of the word.

This times 1000. This expansion had more than enough grinding already (and still does). No need to introduce more of a time sink and gate into something that never had it before - not mention wasting unnecessary time on all of your profession alts.

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Things that are time gated definitionally cannot be grinds. A grind is like killing the pirates for the insane, or running around collecting eggs for noblegarden. Caps and time gates are put on things to stop people from grinding them.