For a while now, Trion has been trying to make crafting more useful for endgame. Crafting in RIFT is currently useful while leveling, very useful upon immediately hitting level cap, and useful when new content and item expansions cause players to hit the ground running. What’s missing? Yeah, all that time in between. During these large expanses of time when players are happily making the gear ladder climb during raids, PvP, or instances, crafting tends to take the backseat.
There are a couple reasons behind the issue. While raiding and PvPing, vendor-bought gear and drops quickly become better than crafted alternatives until new recipes are added. Leveling crafting is also simple. Tradeskills are easy to max, so during the periods when recipes are easy to obtain, crafted items become commonplace. Crafted items like runes and consumables are needed at all times during endgame, but when crafting is both commonplace and simple, these items become easily obtainable through alts and the auction house.
Trion’s newest idea to liven up the crafting world is the addition of seals. Seals are currently available to test on the PTS (public test shard). Like all information grabbed from the PTS, any of this is subject to change at any time. There is currently no estimated date of release for seals. They’re still in the early testing stages, as far as we have been told.
Seals are crafted items that can be equipped in a special seal slot. A player can only have one equipped at a time. On the character screen, the seal slot shows up just below the boots slot, pictured to the left. Seals grant a simple stat bonus, ranging from +9 at level 40 to a maximum of +33 at level 50.
All seals are bind-on-equip (BoE) so far, and are currently only available for level 40 characters and above. Instead of creating a totally new tradeskill or adding seals to one current tradeskill, every crafting tradeskill except Runecrafting will be able to create seals of a particular stat.
Runecrafting was presumably left out of the picture here because of the limited amount of stats available, but also because of the fact that Runecrafting remains fairly useful while obtaining new gear simply due to the fact that new gear requires new runes. Speaking of runes, Rage Runeshards and Recondite Runeshards can be placed on seals, which means Runecrafters will have a bit of crafting to do when seals are released, too.
Here’s a handy diagram for the current breakdown as seen on the PTS:
Thankfully, because they are BoE, the market on seals should open up fairly quickly upon release. It should also be simple to grab multiple seals for different gear sets. The fact that each tradeskill has a particular stat is a good way to encourage players to seek out other crafters and/or the AH. Like most crafted items, augments can also be placed on seals when crafting them. The epic augments are currently adding the following stats on the PTS:
One stat: +5
Spell/physical crit: +5
Split stat: +3, +2
Blue Valorstone: +22 valor
Now, as to the actual seal recipes. There are two places to currently grab recipes on the PTS. The first two recipes are available at the crafting trainers. Both of these recipes are green-quality. Here are their names, stats, required levels, and required tradeskill level:
Level 40 – Green-quality +9 stat:
Trained [required tradeskill 230]:
Level 50 – Green-quality +13 stat:
Trained [required tradeskill 260]:
The next bunch is purchasable from the Meridian/Sanctum crafting vendors with Artisan Marks and Master Craftman’s Marks: Note: Marks are used to purchase the recipes. For the +33 stat seals, I have also listed the material costs for each recipe.
Level 50 – Blue-quality +19 stat:
225 Artisan Marks [required tradeskill 280]:
Level 50 – Epic-quality +25 stat:
3 Master Craftman’s Marks [required tradeskill 300]:
Level 50 – Epic-quality +33 stat:
8 Master Craftman’s Marks [required tradeskill 300]:
Exuberant Ingenuity: Dex
[Materials: Unstable Catalyst, Shimmering Crystal, Tempered Orichalcum Bar (3), Enchanted Shadethorn Lumber (3), Reagent Enchanted Lacquer (3)]
Unyielding Perseverance: End
[Materials: Unstable Catalyst, Shimmering Crystal (2), Tempered Orichalcum Bar (5), Ethereal Flux (3)]
Eternal Sage: Wis
[Materials: Unstable Catalyst, Jagged Lightstone (2), Tempered Orichalcum Bar (5), Ethereal Flux (3)]
Overwhelming Might: Str
[Materials: Unstable Catalyst, Enchanted Shadethorn Lumber (7), Endless Dust (3), Catalytic Essence]
Radiant Brilliance: Int
[Materials: Unstable Catalyst, Steel-Stiched Leather (4), Bolt of Radiant Witchweave (3), Magical Oil (3)]
All recipes besides the +33 variants are created using easy-to-obtain materials. Needless to say, the +33 recipe is currently the best of the bunch. The Unstable Catalysts can be purchased from the Hammerknell Raid Merchant for 50 Greater Marks of Ascension each. They can be traded.
Combined with an epic augment, most players are eventually looking at a +38 increase to their stat of choice, plus the additional rune. The great thing about seals is that once they’re crafted or purchased, they will last until new ones are added to the game. The downside to this is the fact that despite Trion’s best efforts of encouraging players to craft during endgame, once a player creates/buys their best seal(s), crafting disappears out of the picture again, except when it comes to runes, consumables, and crafting for others.
This addition, so far, has received varied player feedback. Some players wish Trion would have been a little more creative with seals, and I can’t help but agree. Plain stats are useful, but boring. On the other hand, players having more than one option when it comes to adding straight stats to their endgame character isn’t necessarily bad. A new level 50 player can, for example, buy a better seal to help them as they gear up and gain PA levels. Players can also experiment with different seals and discover which options serve them better in various situations.
Options are awesome. And the end of the day, it’s nice to see Trion coming up with new ideas for crafting. It’ll be interesting to see what type of impact seals have on our economy, and what future crafting additions the developers have in store for us.