Wednesday, 26 February 2014

How to Make Professions Better

This week in Community Blog Topic we ask ourselves, how would we make professions better.What we need to ask ourselves is, why are professions not picked because they are fun and useful, instead of how much gold we can earn with them. When I first picked Engineering on my Paladin, I did so because back then Paladins lacked any kind of ranged attack, and it could be a nightmare leveling up if you could not pull mobs individually.

What I resent, is the fact of how useless some professions can be these days. I have not leveled up any of the secondary professions since Cataclysm with the exception of Archaeology. And the latter I did only to get a Fossilized Raptor, but gave up on the idea once I got Disc of the Red Flying Cloud.

I remember back in Burning Crusade, and Wrath of the Lich King always walking around with a stack of explosives. Materials were not hard to come by, and the effect the explosives had on your surroundings was satisfactory. Especially when battling in Wintergrasp, it was a good feeling knowing that the bombs you threw at the fortress helped speed up the game for your side. It felt useful.

These days Engineering seems like a gold-sink without equal. You can make yourself goggles that will hold up until next raid tier is released. Beside that, there is nothing but over-expensive mounts. Most of the gadgets are useful, but they end up as an alternative of how to make your living in Azeroth as painless as possible, instead of being something that will contribute to the endgame.

I will not say that there should not be a choice, and everything should be the same. But if you aim to do any kind of raiding in my opinion (maybe this is why I'm not raiding these days any longer), you should do everything in your power to pull your weight. You would not start a fight without your helmet equipped, right? Same then applies to gems, enchants, and glyphs. These are not optional, they are required. And alternatives, while different, are often inferior to the established fare.

But I am sidetracking here. How to make professions better? Simple, make them single-focused. If you have engineering, make use only of mining and that is it. It is really depressing when you know that if you want to make anything as an engineer, some alchemist is going to make a killing on auction house because of you. Tie a crafting profession to only one other profession, preferably a gathering one.

It should be possible to level a profession while leveling. I mean, that is the point of most of them, is it not? Where is the meaning of a profession if most of the time you only craft items so you can sell them to merchant or disenchant them. Professions should be used, not for money, but actually made use of. Professions should be useful beyond my local alchemist making a killing on all his living steel bars just because I need over forty bars of that blighted ore to build an engineering mount for myself.

All professions should be of use to the ones that maxed them. Professions should matter not because they are good source of gold, but because they are useful, and entertaining. For example, blacksmiths, tailors and leatherworkers should be able to repair their respective armours. Engineers should have a discount while Jeeves is repairing their armour, or even have a cut from all the repairs Jeeves does. I am getting greedy, let us go a bit back.

I want to see the work of my profession. I would like to have cogs available for any armour slot. I understand this would require some rework of sort, but it would make Engineering a viable option through the entirety of an expansion. Why not expand? Why cannot we specialise for a certain things inside of our professions? For example, why cannot we make a jet-fueled fiery greatswords if we are engineers with a blacksmithing as subspecialisation?

There are countless possibilties, and maybe this is why it is so scary. We could have a Blacksmith with subspec in Enchanting making magical armours with glowing effects and such, a Jewelcrafter with subspec in Tailoring crafting bracelets. In short, there are a lot of options. Some combinations would overlap. There would not be any difference in the added recipes between engineer with a Blacksmithing subspec and Blacksmith with Engineering sunspec. They could both make the same additional items.

While we are at that, I would want to see more of actual effects of professions in the world. I want to see necklaces, rings, cogs, gems, on my Paladin. I want to see rockets when I use my nitro boots.boosts. I am not sure how useful would any of this be. Right now, I know I would be perfectly happy if I did not have to rely on an alchemist to make an engineering mount. If it is metal bars, let miners smelt them sprinkle whatever is needed on them, and be done with it.

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