Combining items


We've had some good discussion at the forum about the possibility of combining items in Driftmoon. I am of course talking about putting together two items to create a new item, such as combining a sword and a magical gem to create the Magical Sword of Doom!

As some of you may know, Notrium used the item combinations mechanic extensively - for some races the game was nearly unplayable until you learned the required combinations to survive. When thinking about the mechanic for Driftmoon I originally dismissed item combinations as too hard core. Even I had a hard time replaying Notrium just now since I didn't read all the hints about the combinations.

What actually convinced me to think otherwise is that combining items is a great way for you to use all the loot you gather. There are only a few ways in any game you can use the items you get. You can use/wear them, sell them, drop them, or combine them with something. Driftmoon is not going to be a Diablo clone where all you do is sell loot to get money to go get more loot to sell, so I'm welcoming this newfound way to use up your hardfound loot.

I think the best kind of combinations are those that you can only do once, like unique weapons or armor, or unique magical items. To me it gets boring if you need to combine some basic resources to get something you need frequently, like healing kits or poison arrows. I like the wait of having one part of the unique weapon, and waiting to see when the final part comes along.

Since I disliked remembering the combinations in Notrium I've been looking at ways to ease the combining process. In Baldur's Gate another character did the combinations and told you which items you needed. Getting to him was always a chore, so I dont' want that. In Diablo you guessed the combination, and placed the required items in a container to combine them. But I disliked the fact that you needed to experiment with it to get the results. Such a system couldn't be used for any really important item combinations, since many players would never try to guess the combination. My favourite combinations system must have been in Arcanum where you found ancient schematics. The schematic showed what you needed and what you got out of it, you just clicked the schematic to combine. Notrium had a similar system with the blueprint for the hover vehicle, and I think it worked well.

blog comments powered by Disqus