Dear Funcom, Part 1 of 3

I want to start off and say thank you for my 300+ hours (and growing) of game play you've given me during a rough time in my life – you've recaptured my imagination with the Conan Universe (and for some reason my music player can't play anything but the movie soundtracks from the older ones…).

Additionally, I want to say the presentation from your most recent blog blew me away, and I'm ecstatic to see all of this stuff come to fruition! Squeeeeeeeeeeeeee! <3 <3 <3

To get to my point though: You have a fantastic game, but it does have it's issues. Myself and many many others bought this game to simply play it, but I want to try and make a difference and actually offer as much constructive feedback as I can to help make this game become the best it can be. The following is in aid of that, my personal suggestions, what makes sense to me, reasoning behind said decisions, and glitches that I've found along the way.

I hope you enjoy, and it'd make my day if this was read and responded to so that I know my effort wasn't in vain!


1) Recipes, Leveling, and Character

Many survival games do the recipe learning differently, and I enjoy what Conan Exiles (further referred to as CE) did in it's own regard. While I don't personally feel it is the best it can possibly be , it's a good basis to start from. I wanted to go through EVERY RECIPE with you Funcom, and it's listed below. I'm not going to complain about costs, as that's a BALANCING issue, and I'm tackling things that don't have to do with a simple number change.

I feel the better version of this would be making actual 'SKILL TREES' for each department, so people can actually focus on a profession and be rewarded for their dedication.

Trees would include: Carpenter, Armorer, Masonry, Blacksmith, Survivor, Decorator, Taskmaster, Alchemist, Priest, Sorcery(Not Yet Implemented) Leaving 10 total.

I can even divide all of the current recipes into those categories and they should work for future ones as well. Like a classic Skill Tree in an RPG, you start at the top (or bottom) and work your way in the opposite direction, stuck behind 2 requirements to get what you want: Level Requirement, and x amount of points in tree requirement. This would provide a good checks and balance system, and allow people to be really really good and craft things very few others can (and rely on others for trade or clan people to assist for other things) or be a good generalist.

I'm honestly willing to go an extra mile and write this all up if you would be interested in seeing it. It can be a simple tab system at the top of the current UI when you click 'Learn Recipes'. Please let me know! From a design point of view, a whole bunch of boxes and a large scroll bar with no cohesion between any of the recipes I can learn is really disorientating , so at the very least organize it if you don't go with this idea!

Here's a Masonry example tree ! Things to note: I DO NOT BALANCE, so ignore the number values.

The best part about all of the above? It is already (mostly) integrated into the game! There is already a tabs feature that just needs to be re-purposed to have access to only one at a time, some UI elements added to show a tree and new text, and it's done! This system supports more recipes to be added than what is currently available more so than it currently does. While i fits fine right now, the more things to craft the more creative the trees can get and/or increase the requirements for higher level stuff!

As an example of a 'specialization' of one of these trees, what if someone super dedicated into Masonry… and got the fabled T4 stuff? They might hardly make anything else, but everyone would want them on their team! How about a Master Blacksmith? They don't use those pitiful furnaces we use now, they have Master Furnaces that cook things simultaneously and have larger storage, faster cooking speeds, or even a longer fuel time!

As for the current recipes: I divided the recipes into 2 sections: Modify and Suggested.

Modify

  • Acolyte of Set -> ~Setite Ritual Knife~ doesn't gather hide like other daggers.

  • Acolyte of Mitra -> ~Offering to Mitra~'s intention was to get others' religion's objects and sacrifice them? I feel it's a cool idea in theory, but hard to obtain unless you learn the other religions and purposefully go out of your way to get them (this includes having others with you and using their items to make this offering instead of getting an antidote or food/water refill at the Tier 1 level. I feel that it, and the other religions, can have an offering of the appropriate items (Lingering Essence for Mitra for example) of some large quantity of say, 50, and gain a lot of Manifestation from doing that. Otherwise, why waste time doing that when I can just get a whole bunch spamming the small, useful stuff? Perhaps a buff would be neat if you insist on sacrificing others' objects.

  • Survivalist -> Add the Stone Axe to this, as making a Pick is far more complicated and allows everyone to gather from the get go besides being blocked behind a level up you HAVE to put points into anyway.

  • Weaver -> Ideally, this should be something you purchase as not everyone can make clothing – this can also start the future additional clothing sets that can be made recipe-tree line. Make it not automatic and cost 1-2 points, and maybe even make it come at a later level (no more than 5). When you learn this, you also learn Twine, and change the recipes for these clothes into Twine besides Plant Fiber. It looks like actual clothes woven together, and that's what Twine is! Woven Plant Fiber!

  • Apprentice Craftsman -> I think this just needs to be removed. You get level 2 so fast anyway, it's a necessity for so many things, and it's rather basic crafting. I feel it'd be harder to make clothes (which I'll get into) than an axe, if I can somehow shape a pick just fine before that, let alone a bedroll or twine. I think the Stone Axe needs to be automatic at level 1, the Bedroll and Twine can be redistributed.

  • Experienced Survivalist -> This can instead be at level 2 and offer the Campfire, Waterskin, and Fiber Bedroll. This is the basics of surviving, and while anyone can gather things (making a crude gathering tool to do so), you need this to really be able to camp out and at least make something of yourself.

  • Light, Medium, Heavy Armor Sets -> It feels REALLY strange getting piece by piece – besides learning each individual part, perhaps we can start knowing how to make a crude SET of each, and each time we purchase an upgrade to the next quality level? For example: Crude Light Armor, Mediocre Light Armor, Normal Light Armor (Current one in game to learn). You have to learn all 3 to progress to the next Tier of armor. Stagnated armor doesn't feel rewarding, but knowing that I can now make the best armor, and at least make a full set regardless, makes me feel accomplished and that I am progressing somehow.

  • Any Tier of FRAME Walls -> Honestly, it's a simple hole punch in Any Tier of Wall, it would be nice to learn both at the same time. Makes no sense to have to learn extra hard to make a hole!

  • Any Tier of Left/Right Sloping Walls -> If I know how to make a left one, I don't need to learn to put the framework on the opposite side in a symmetrical order! People make real life mistakes of this when doing the other side, no reason why I can't 'learn' from that mistake or just know how to do it from the get-go!

  • Any Tier of SQUARE Foundation/Ceiling ~or~ TRIANGLE Foundation/Ceiling -> Ceiling is a super miniature version of the Foundation, I should know how to make the simpler version when I learn the complex version. You did this for the Tier 1, but not the others.

  • Any Tier of Roof -> Making learning the same tier of roof all at once! Again, so long as I know the material and how to make any size shape of it, it's a rather simple process. Even up the cost if you have to!

  • Any Tier of Fence/Fence Foundation -> In practical learning, you should know how to lay down the foundation before even being able to make a fence, let alone placing one. These needs to be combined as well!

  • Any Tier of Gate Wall/Gate Door -> Again, just combine them, it makes no sense to make one without the other. Just increase the points, I know people buy it all at once right now anyway!

  • Palisade/Simple Palisade/Spike -> Same Recipe as well, makes no sense to know one and not the other – just add more sticks or take away some!

  • Carpenter -> Remove Signs and make it it's own Recipe! That's an aesthetic, decoration thing!

  • Bracketed Torch -> Add the ~Stygian Brazier~ to this as it's more complex to make than a torch attached to a stick (~Standing Torch~). Make ~Bracketed Torch~ cost stone or iron bars/ironstone.

  • Torch -> Add ~Standing Torch~, since you're just attaching it to a stick in the ground.

  • Firemaker -> Remove from game

Suggested

  • Bronze Weapons! We start off in the stone age, go to the iron age, then get access to a bronze weapon, then go to steel. You can balance the game with an additional Tier of weaponry that costs Stone and Ironstone to make (or make it just plain Bronze to collect), OR, if you don't want to do an additional tier, simply make the Bronze stuff a cheaper, weaker version of Iron (but is still the same tier as such)
  • Normal Clothes! I know people would love to craft that sort of thing, including myself!

As for leveling, I enjoy the current system, and hope to see it feel more 'noticeable' besides complicated equations on each of them. Everyone says Vitality and Encumbrance do the most, but that's only because they're the most noticeable. When I put a point in, I want it to feel like I'm making my character more unique, not just going through the motions. So, some of my own suggestions (Just random suggestions – I am NOT suggesting to use all of them at once!):

  • Strength: Increases Melee Damage, Increase Dragging Thrall Speed (assuming that you actually get weighed down by pulling a normal thrall somewhat – it sounds like you will in the future, especially with Rhinos! So a high strength guy can haul a Rhino potentially by himself!), Increased range for projectiles thrown

  • Agility: Increases Armor, Increases Move Speed (.5% per point?), Increases Poise (I've noticed that while having armor is nice, if you lack poise you still get screwed over. If Agility offered a bit of poise to go with the armor, it'd make it worthwhile to take, for now though it's rather lack-luster. 1 for every 4 points?)

  • Vitality: Increases Hit-Points, Decreases Poison Duration (Includes DoT and Crippling, so you'd take a bit less damage since the stacks would fall off quicker, say, 1% per point)

  • Accuracy: Increases Ranged Damage, Adds Armor Penetration (say 1 per 4 points? Seeing through the enemies weak points, looking for openings, etc.), Increased range for projectiles shot

  • Grit: Increases Energy, Increases Corruption Resistance (Acquire it slower since you 'tough it out' as the word Grit implies), Decreases Poison Duration Effect (Includes DoT and Crippling, so you'd move a bit quicker if you were crippled and take less damage per tick), Increased Stamina Regen

  • Encumbrance: Increased Carrying Capacity, Ignore Movement Penalties for heavier armors, Reduced stamina penalties for carrying a lot (be it Regen or Movement)

  • Survival: Decreased Food/Water need, Increased chance of getting 'bonus' harvests (When harvesting with anything, I typically notice 2-3 numbers at random – good example is Steel Pick farming stone. Either 10 or 12 a swing. Increasing Survival would make the 12 proc more often.)

As for character… more sliders! More hairs! Facial Hair! More make-up! Acquire Make-up/War Paint in game! Silyl cosmetic stuff like that.


This is my first Reddit post ever, so if there are mistakes I apologize. I'll be working on part 2) Thralls and part 3) Bugs/Improvements if this actually gets noticed enough or people want to see it!

I've tried all the other survival games on the market, and none of them have snared me in like this before so quickly! You have a life-time customer Funcom 🙂 I've always enjoyed your games (Especially The Secret World), and I'm glad you keep up the trend of innovating in some fantastic way in a genre that you dip into!

Thank you for your time, and if I do have a skill tree request, do a @ReaperOf666 comment so I can quickly tally the ones who want to see it, or if I'm addressed by Funcom themselves :O

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