I finally got alpha! So let’s take a look at the first of the professions. We’ll start with a goldmaking favorite, in blacksmithing.
Currently Blacksmithing has four specializations: Armorsmithing, Weaponsmithing, Specialty smithing and Anvil mastery. The first two obviously deal with weapons and armor. Specialty smithing covers weapon stones, some profession tools and alloys (the new intermediate material). Anvil Mastery seems to give bonuses to all forms of blacksmithing crafting, and is unlocked by default.
I have not had time to test optimization
I have not had time to test optimization yet, as I’ve only had alpha for a couple of days. I will eventually figure out the most efficient path towards the ability to craft higher level gear. It does seem you can craft quality 3 base epics with quality 1 reagents and just the bare minimum specializations point. To get the max item level you will need to add infusions however, which will increase recipe difficulty significantly.
Leveling is slow
I managed to get to 100 profession skill, but it required that I craft somewhere in the 70-90 range of epic BoP weapons that require a BoP material. You will have to work crafting orders hard to make it to 100.
Knowledge is king
Getting the knowledge to max out profession specializations will be very important. Currently I can’t get past quality 3 on any items without better profession tools (which aren’t implemented yet) or putting significantly more knowledge points in.
We don’t know the acquistion rate, but they do come from dailies, as well as scribe item that can be crafted with inscription. Sadly one of the materials required is not implemented yet, so we don’t know what kind of cooldown it has.
There seems to be three tiers of recipes currently in the game, with even more available through infusions. Rare gear is BoE and can be crafted en masse. This currently covers weapons for level 70 as well as a PVP starter set for armor. There’s no BoE rare armor yet.
The next tier is the Primal Molten pieces that you unlock from the relevant weapon or armor type specialization. Finally there are some “Black Dragon Seared” recipes. These are currently the same Ilvl as Primal Molten, but use a special reagent you have to craft at the Earth warden’s forge. I don’t know where that is yet, but it seems this might be intended to be the absolute top end. The recipes for this is currently just sold by the vendor, so no idea how it will be obtained. The Black Dragon armor pieces include powerful proc effects.
Weapon stones make a return. You need the weapon stone specialization to craft them. They will obviously be needed, but I expect the economic potential early on to be dwarfed by weapons or armor.
You can also craft various profession tools. Currently they either have combat stats or a fixed stat combination, presumably it will be random, the onse you can craft now only have resourcefulness and crafting speed. There are also repair hammers to repair an item, which seems useless unless repair costs or repairs change significantly.
It’s very obvious that the current implementation is in an alpha stage. It’s to early to meaningfully look at optimization, as there’s just too many missing variables. It does look like you will need to max out a specific weapon types node, as well as the base node and probably anvil mastery to get close to quality 5. If you add optional reagents you are probably looking at needing a finishing reagent as well.
It looks profitable though
Weapon crafting and armor crafting both seem really strong. I expect blacksmithing to be a top contender early on, both for profession tools, initial rare gearing as well as epic crafted items with crafting orders.