How to Improve Crafting

Because right now…it’s terribad. First I’m pointing out the main problems with BFA crafting:

  1. Crafted gear is the same ilevel, or lower, than the drops from the dungeons/raids needed to be run for the crafted gears’ mats. These mats are also BoP, and the items they make are BoP, so what sense is there in even making these items? You are more likely to receive a better drop from the dungeon/raid before coming anywhere close to making the item.

  2. Crafted leveling gear (aka, non-120 stuff) is (more or less) equivalent to what you would get from your FIRST quests into 110-120 content. They are soon outstripped by quest rewards as you level and the quest reward quality goes up. This is coupled with the problem that it takes so many mats to level professions and the reality (not problem, persay) that leveling is so fast, that you are way outstripping your ability to make your own gear.

  3. Getting the secondary stats you want on a piece is random. You might have to blow through the mats for 20 items before you get that one you really care for.

  4. Some materials are only dropped in dungeons and raids, where players who hate this content can’t/won’t get to it. Similarly, some recipes are locked behind quests or random procs.

  5. Recipe improvements only mean the mat cost of crafted items is lower. This is really only useful if you were wanting to produce the items en masse (and there’s very little reason for wanting this with the uselessness of most crafted gear) or if you wanted a less painful way to grind skill, which…is kind of backwards too–as you outlevel the lower-mat-cost recipe or are already at max crafting when you get it. I feel like they dropped the ball here on the obvious way to build in an upgradeable system to crafting, but more on that later.

  6. The stat crunch has broken many old recipes from vanilla and other expansions. Example: the dynamite you can craft at level 5 only does 3 damage. (Perspective: Mobs at this level have something like 500-800 health and your abilities do something like 30 damage each if not more.) This is coupled with the reality (again, not a problem persay) that it is not needed to gain crafting skill in all these old areas to level the current content’s crafting. Overall, outside of tmog or achievement OCD, this makes crafting that’s not for the current content useless, and further compounds issues like lower level crafting mats not being sellable and new players missing out on a potentially enjoyable/lucrative/helpful-to-their-friends part of the game.

I can’t comprehend how some of these things passed testing because basic math…? But at any rate…we’re going to be constructive here, so here’s some ideas to correct these problems.

Idea #1: Raise ALL the iLevels!
Raise ilevels across the board of crafted gear. A player that spends hours leveling their crafting should be able to compete with a player who spends hours in a dungeon, raid, doing WQs, or doing PvP (rated or non-). Time is money, or rather effort, that should still be rewarded!

Idea 2: Less Soulbinding
Make the best gear not BoP, or at least BoA instead. Then there is conceivably some use in using crafting to gear alts, if not your friends.

Idea 3: Bind-to-Guild and Bind-to-BTag?
If throwing good crafted gear on the market is really such a concern (and I’d argue it isn’t: these things drive player economies), then let’s introduce a new mechanic. Bind-to-Btag-Friends or Bind-to-Guild. Slide in a requirement there that the Bnet friends must be your friends for at least two weeks or so, and your guildies must have a rep of at least Honored or something, so its not easily by-passable.

Idea 4: Stars Should = Meaningful Upgrades
Replace the stars-mean-less-crafting-mats-needed with actual upgrades. THIS is where you can make getting those stars feel meaningful, as well as give players the chance to make gear that actually matters, in a way that doesn’t trivialize the various other methods of obtaining gear, as time is still necessary to get the goods.

Idea 5: Give non-BFA Crafting a Facelift
Make crafted gear at the lower levels equal or even better than heirloom gear. For better or for worse, twinks will love you. I also do not see this as an imbalance–if a player wants to sacrifice some expensive mats and extra time to get their crafting skill up to par, they should be rewarded for that effort, even if the reward is temporary once they gain a few more levels. It also helps new players to be able to get right into the game as it makes their skills relevant to old players as well. Crafting mats will also sell better for those lower levels, helping the player economy.

Idea 6: Relevant to the Content it Comes From
I’m not actually against the idea of certain recipes or crafting mats being locked behind certain content–this has been a WoW staple forever, since those vanilla Engineering and Blacksmithing recipes in BRD and BRS–BUT I would put an eye towards making these locked recipes and mats most meaningful from the content you get it from. AS AN EXAMPLE…gear with mats from raids should be equal to or even better than the loot typically dropped from those raids, or at least BoA/BoE so they can be sent to ungeared alts and new raid members. Trinkets with great procs for PvP should have their recipes sold on the PvP vendor. Items that are useful in several modes of gameplay (say, mount speed increases) should then be baseline off the crafting trainer.

Idea 7: Less Random Stats, or Even Single Statted Gear
Instead of random-stat recipes, again break these recipes out into different recipes. For instance, you could craft Monel-Hardened Gauntlets of Haste and Versatility (or whatever the combined name is–I’m blanking) AND Monel-Hardened Gauntlets of Haste and Mastery…and all the others. I realize this would make one recipe into 16+…so you may also consider having crafting be the only place you can get gear that only stacks one secondary stat. (Meaning, raid gear might give you something with +110 vers and +110 mastery…crafting could give you something that is +220 mastery alone.) This would help to incentivize crafting again for min-maxers.

Any other ideas? Critiques on these? Please post! And if you like this, please upvote! Let’s get these devs listening on a system that has arguably been broken since Cataclysm.


Your first point is totally wrong. For the entirety of BFA up to 8.2 the first piece of top end gear required mats from Mythic dungeons and created a piece of gear equal to Normal raid gear. The piece learned from that used mats dropped from the raid but at a low enough amount that you could get it in Normal. You use this to create a piece of gear that is equal to Heroic. Same thing goes for the final piece of gear that is equal to Mythic raid gear.

I do agree that making the item in a timely manner has thus far been difficult. I personally didn’t make any of the past tier’s armors. However, they have removed the dungeon and raid mats for the 8.2 armor and I have already made both of the pieces.

Actually, a good workaround for this would be a toggle function on recipes. If Blizzard really wants to keep the RANDOM GEAR IS FUNS aspect, have it so you can toggle one secondary stat when crafting. All gear you craft will have that secondary, plus another. I’d rather a two toggle system, where you pick the two secondaries, but I’ll even take just one.

Preferably, tie this to the star rating; one star, pick one secondary. Two stars, pick both. Three stars gives you a chance at upgrading the ilevel/quality, adding sockets, or getting tertiary stats.


Hm, alright, I did some fact checks. In rough order of lowest to highest ways of obtaining gear:

Mythic (non-key) (Season 1)

Unranked PvP Conquest Cap (Season 1)
Uldir Normal
Heroic Dungeon (Season 2)

WQs (Season 1): scaled with you up to 360

Mythic +2 (Season 1)
First crafted piece: 370, needed Uldir drops
WQs (Season 2): scaled up with you to 370
Uldir Heroic
Mythic (non-key) Season 2

Mythic +2 (Season 2)

WQ Emissaries (Season 1): scaled with you to 385
Mythic +5 (Season 1)
Top Ranked PvP Conquest Cap (Season 1)
Unranked PvP Conquest Cap (Season 2)
BfD Normal
Uldir Mythic
Second crafted piece

Mythic +5 (Season 2)

WQ Emissaries (Season 2): scaled with you to 395/400
Mythic +10 (Season 1)
BfD Heroic
Third crafted piece required drops from BfD raid
Top Ranked PvP Conquest Cap (Season 2)

Mythic +10 (Season 2): 410
BfD Mythic: 415

Note none of this includes the inflated ilevels of Titanforging and the like, which can inflate the ilevel much more than this. I italicized the crafted pieces and bolded methods that are very easy to obtain in comparison to the rest in its group. Judging by those numbers, it might be the M+ and WQ ilevels that are way off for the amount of time/effort involved (even more so after Season 2), while everything else is kept tuned to each other. Or put another way, raids, PvP, and crafting are falling behind.

I’ll use the Blacksmithing gear as my example as that is the profession I mainly do. I am only going to put the dungeon and raid mat costs.

(Season 1)
Stormsteel Legguards
ilvl 355 (equal to Uldir Normal)
15 Hydrocore (Mythic dungeon reagent)

Imbued Stormsteel Legguards (learned by crafting Stormsteel Legguards)
ilvl 370 (equal to Uldir Heroic)
25 Sanguicell (Uldir Raid reagent)

Emblazened Stormsteel Legguards (learned by crafting Imbued Stormsteel Legguards)
ilvl 385 (equal to Uldir Mythic)
250 Sanguicell (Uldir Raid reagent)

(Season 2)
Enhanced Stormsteel Legguards
ilvl 385 (equal to BoD Normal)
15 Tidalcore (Mythic dungeon reagent)

Fortified Stormsteel Legguards (learned by crafting Enhanced Stormsteel Legguards)
ilvl 400 (equal to BoD Heroic)
20 Breath of Bwonsomdi (BoD Raid reagent)

Tempered Stormsteel Legguards (learned by crafting Fortified Stormsteel Legguards)
ilvl 415 (equal to BoD Mythic)
200 Breath of Bwonsomdi (BoD Raid reagent)

After checking the professions on my other characters I have found that high end crafted gear made by those professions follows the same pattern with two exceptions. The first tier season 1 Engineering goggles are only 340 ilvl yet only need 3 Hydrocore to craft. Coincidentally the season 1 second tier goggles, which are 370 ilvl and require 25 Sanguicells like all the other pieces, are learned from the trainer instead of making the first tier goggles. Season 2 remains the same. Also, Inscription does not have any gear requiring raiding mats.

Actually, a good workaround for this would be a toggle function on recipes. If Blizzard really wants to keep the RANDOM GEAR IS FUNS aspect, have it so you can toggle one secondary stat when crafting. All gear you craft will have that secondary, plus another. I’d rather a two toggle system, where you pick the two secondaries, but I’ll even take just one.
Preferably, tie this to the star rating; one star, pick one secondary. Two stars, pick both. Three stars gives you a chance at upgrading the ilevel/quality, adding sockets, or getting tertiary stats.

This is a really good idea too!

I think you make good suggestions. I’ve played WoW for a very long time now and have watched the professions degrade into utter uselessness. This particularly annoys me because I don’t really like to run mythic dungeons or raid so questing, farming and crafting are what draw me to the game. One of the things I have loved about WoW over the years has been the fact that it allows for so many different types of gameplay: PvP, dungeons, raids, questing, farming, crafting - and each has been rewarding for the players who enjoy that type (as well as for those who enjoy them all}. Somewhere along the line the crafting seems to have been left behind and the points you make are all things that are currently driving me crazy. Your suggestions for improving that area are superb and would go a long way toward improving my enjoyment of the game. Thank you for the post - it says a lot of what I’ve been feeling but haven’t been able to express.

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Another problem a friend reminded me of:
7. Enchanters have a hard time getting Expulsom. Since they already “scrap” gear for enchanting mats, they then can’t get Expulsom without crafting/finding twice the gear to break down. Expulsom is a horridly low proc too, so you are punished by not throwing everything you can into the scrapper when trying to grind this out. Likewise, some professions like Alchemy have little need for Expulsom. Because Expulsom is BoP, they just sit around in these characters’ bags being useless forever.

Potential Fix:
First, I love the idea of scrapping and hope they expand this across all expansions at some point. It’s more Expulsom that is the problem here, as well as Enchanting’s need to “scrap” their gear specially, than scrapping as an idea.
Expulsom could potentially be fixed by adding a vendor that exchanges crafting mats for this material, in the way Legion’s Blood of Sargeras worked. I am unsure of the need to make Expulsom BoP to begin with, as it forces you to do dailies and such on a character you may just want for a crafting alt, so I would also suggest just making this stuff BoE instead (or BoA or Bind-to-Guild/Bind-to-Bnet, as suggested above).
As far as enchanters go, though, they still have that double-whammy: they can either scrap for Expulsom or disenchant for enchanting mats. Enchanting is frequently paired with Tailoring, which needs Expulsom for its own gear, so simply eliminating the need for Expulsom in Enchanting recipes won’t help matters. For Enchanters, then, perhaps an enchanting recipe can be made that makes Expulsom (put it on a cooldown if desired), or otherwise give Expulsom a chance to drop from their regularly disenchanted items (perhaps an “enchant” to gloves or shoulders that gives this specialized proc). Or vice versa, for enchanters only, scrapped items could also return some enchanting mats (either as baseline or a special enchantment).

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This is exactly why they did it. These BoP reagents (I think Spirits of Harmony were the first iteration) were designed so that you get more on active characters and less on characters you don’t use much. I am not saying I support it, but it is what they have stated in the past.

To currently fix crafting the best thing they could do is to make ALL materials tradable…unbind all crafting materials and make all crafted gear either BOE or BOA. those two things would do more to fix crafting than anything.

For the future I think it would be great if some of the best gear you can get for open world content came from crafting. Gear that is as good as gear you can get from raiding or mythic + with the exception that raid and dungeon gear comes with a bonus to damage while in a raid or dungeon but that bonus would not be active in the open world.

They need to make crafting more fun and more useful for playing the game.

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To fix crafting and professions:

  1. revert to wotlk design: 2008-2010
  2. improve from that point

Yeah, essentially. They should have built upon the older model, rather than simplifying it down. Oh well, it’s not our decision to make.

True it is not our decision but we can still give them ideas and hopefully they will stop being pig headed and stubborn and realize how they could make crafting a better more significant part of the game.

I was just getting ready to start this kind of thread. I have an enchanter/tailor alt, and in the past, I could probably get the highest level of equipment (or some of it) while remaining well under max level, by funneling items from my main.

Now, in order to craft max slot bags, I’m going to have to use a boost, or level my character the long way (which isn’t that long, but still).

Needless to say, I am unhappy with the current crafting professions, and am thinking about just getting two gathering profs on all my next chars, and just selling mats on the AH.

Like I said in your other post I would not boost a character for crafting max slot bags unless you plan on doing mythic dungeons for the soulbound item required to make them.

Hopefully they will pull their heads out and make crafting a better part of this game.

I do not raid much anymore and I don’t do mythic dungeons much so I have learned just how frustrating it is for crafters who hate doing those things to have some of the best stuff for crafting gated or locked behind dungeons and raids.

At the very least they could make all crafting materials tradable to give some relief to this problem.

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A lot of ppl would probably hate this idea but I would love to see them incorporate older mats to newer crafting stuff. Brings ppl back to the older areas and doesnt take long to get the older stuff. Current content only ever seems to require that expansions mats which I understand to some degree. But why wouldnt an engineer need a copper bar or 2 to make something? A gold bar? The current system is pretty broken and maybe separating them by expansion was good from a time saving perspective but how often was everyone leveling those profs anyway? You get BS maxed on one toon but need it in 7 other toons? It also wouldnt have been hard to lower the costs and simply make it faster to lvl the old stuff. Again I like the expansion separation but it also promotes end game and ignore the rest of the zones. I guess I could see having more than one enginner to make Sky golems faster but outside of stuff like that I guess I am missing something when it comes to profs, well pre BFA profs.

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I love that idea and even posted on a thread a while back how they could do that as a way of upgrading current recipes as a means of making them slightly stronger and/or another way would be taking an old recipe and adding a new ingredient to do the same thing.

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No you are not missing anything….Blizz missed the boat a long time ago when they could have made all professions a lot more fun and a lot more relevant to the game instead of just a few of them.

Good to know I didnt miss anything. I think we have a similar idea where certain ingredients added change a stat. Wouldnt be a bad idea imo.


Minor thread rez, with another pet peeve and problem with the BfA crafting system:

Problem: Which Profession Gives What Weapon is Haphazard
Which professions gives which weapons keeps changing. Fist weapons have flopped from Blacksmith (I think?) to Jewelcrafter to, now, Leatherworker. Engineers randomly started getting maces instead of Blacksmith. Off-hands landed with Inscriptionists even though Enchanter and Jewelcrafter would also make sense for them. Trinkets have hopped around a few times, and Staves have suddenly showed up with Jewelcrafters. To top it all offf, not all of these weapons have the latest iLevel version available for them, either. The fist weapons stop at about 310.

The problem with this is that some players choose a profession based on what gear they want to supply their characters with on into forever, and if that keeps changing, or stops halfway through an expansion, well, it forces them to have to re-roll professions or miss out, and there’s no warning (and honestly, reason) to these changes for this at all. That’s frustrating and un-fun.

On a related note, Demon Hunter has no crafted weapon available to them at all, and there are still no crafted bows or polearms. Crafted axes have also disappeared.

Solution #1: Knock It Off!
Give Blacksmith back all their weapon recipes, for every primary stat, and then leave it alone!

As far as the demon hunter problem goes: release more crafted weapons to fill in the gaps. Agility axes, strength axes, intelligence axes, strength maces, agility swords, warglaives, the whole nine yards. I don’t care if the agility sword has the exact same stats as the agility mace and looks the exact same as the strength sword, I just want some variety, and I don’t want my character looking like he/she suddenly forgot how to make basic weapon types when they’ve been able to for every expansion up until Battle for Azeroth, suddenly and at random.

Solution #2: Standardize Across ALL Expansions
On the other hand, on the off chance these changes to weapons keep being made so that Blacksmith doesn’t hoard all the weapon recipes, then at least standardize what weapon types go to what professions, then stick to it, and go back to old expansions and correct it there, too. Consistency matters!

There’s two divisions you could try to follow here. If you’re going for the angle of certain professions being best for a specific role or class, then I would suggest all Agility weapon types be moved to Leatherworker, all Intelligence weapon types moved to Enchanter (or possibly Jewelcrafter), and all Strength weapon types be moved to Blacksmith. IMO, this would still be a bit ungainly though. Take for an hypothetical example: Agility swords made by Leatherworkers. Why do they all look like they’re made out of bone? Will hunters, monks, and demon hunters forever have to look like they yanked their sword out of a dragon’s jawbone? Or would we get metallic Agility swords and then wonder forever why some of them look, well, metallic even though they are made by Leatherworkers? Maybe this wouldn’t be a big deal with t-mog being a thing, and people wanting metal swords could buy Strength swords from Blacksmiths just to record the looks into their collection journal, but it’d still be a bit…ungainly.

The other division is a more realistic one, and also wouldn’t involve taking away old recipes from players while doing the standardizing across old expansions. That division would go like this: Blacksmiths create weapons with metal in them: swords, axes, maces, polearms, daggers, fist weapons. Leatherworkers create weapons with bone in them: axes, daggers, maces, fist weapons, staves, polearms, bows. Enchanters (or Jewelcrafters) craft magic heavy items: swords, daggers, maces, staves, off-hands. All these would be stat-flippers, or have a recipe for each primary stat/role, so you don’t have to wonder why a Blacksmith can make a strength-enhancing sword, but an agility sword is just beyond them, even though the enchancements to both are assumed to be magic.

And do you notice something? Some professions have the same weapon types as other professions. THIS IS FINE. Again, I don’t really care that much if my agility sword looks the same as my strength sword and has the same stats as my agility dagger. Just so long as I have the option to make it again!

That said, if you wish to make the weapons more unique across either weapon types or profession rescipes, then give them different t-mogs (my fist weapons from leatherworker shouldn’t look like metal claws anyway), different secondary stat combinations, or even start bringing back unique on-hit proc abilities such as the Shivervenom Lance or the Thrash Blade (to take an example from Classic). Unique procs would again add value back into crafted items as some may be particularly prized for raids or PvP, as would secondary stat combinations (as long as ilevel keeps up, refer to my first post).

Solution: Woodworker Profession
To go along with the above solutions–not in place of them! along with them!–consider releasing a new profession called woodworking. This profession makes staves, shields, polearms, bows, arrows, (aka all that gear that keeps flip-flopping from profession to profession or hasn’t yet appeared in one) and perhaps some various trinkets or consumables in the form of totems and along the lines of the old Jewelcrafting statues, figurines, and Engineering bombs. If the devs wanted to bring back how crafters need to work together for some items, then this profession could also make the wood stocks for Engineering guns and Blacksmithing axes and polearms. The gathering profession for this would probably need to co-opt Herbalism to now also include sticks as a possible drop from herb nodes. (Though I wonder if it could be worked into Skinning as a kind of “Forester” profession instead? I mainly say this, not because I think it’d make sense, but because all the gathering professions but Skinning have multiple professions that are fed by it.) Alternatively, just a new gathering profession called Forestry, and start changing some of the static trees of old zones into objects that allow you to gather wood from them. (Just please, PLEASE don’t go randomly adding oak trees to all zones to satisfy this profession as some MMOs do, because the lack of fitting species for the climate looks really ugly and lazy.)

As an idea for a future expansion, Woodworker would also be able to craft portable siege vehicles and items for some sort of player housing (or garrison decorations).