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Shroud of the Avatar Videos: Lord British Walks Us Through Crafting (8:18)

We caught up with Richard "Lord British" Garriott last week at his home in New York to talk about Shroud of the Avatar, current progress on the ultimate RPG, and the to get some first-hand looks at some of the game's systems. In this video, Garriott walks and talks us through crafting as it stands in Release 3 of Shroud of the Avatar. - Shroud of the Avatar's Gamespace -

We caught up with Richard "Lord British" Garriott last week at his home in New York to talk about Shroud of the Avatar, current progress on the ultimate RPG, and the to get some first-hand looks at some of the game's systems. In this video, Garriott walks and talks us through crafting as it stands in Release 3 of Shroud of the Avatar. - Shroud of the Avatar's Gamespace -
Duration: 8:18
Views: 3,189  37 comments
Game: Shroud of the Avatar
Direct Link:
View More Shroud of the Avatar Videos...
Storm_Cloud writes:

No, no, no...

All you need is the pieces required to make something, then hit craft and the product is done. This type of crafting is could be good, but lacks the most important part, the risk of failure.

Crafting where there is no risk of failure = no challenge = boring

Head into Vanguard and try the crafting there before it shuts down and you will find out what real crafting should be like. 

Mon Mar 03 2014 12:50PM Report
SomeOldBloke writes: So, if you need tongs to smelt... and they are made by a Blacksmith... who needs Iron Ingots to make them... which are made from Iron Ore... that you need to smelt... and you need tongs to smelt....  oops!! Mon Mar 03 2014 1:13PM Report
Mors.Magne writes:

This game will be a turkey - the focus of a game should not be spreadsheet crafting. The greatest rewards in a game should be found doing the activities that are most fun, such as exploring a dungeon and finding a sword etc.


If you want spreadsheet management / crafting, play Eve Online ! 

Mon Mar 03 2014 2:15PM Report
JJ82 writes:

Guys this is Richard Garriott making the game, the man made Ultima Online, the game with one of the best crafting systems in MMO history.

He knows what he is doing, and this is also an ALPHA and no where near complete.

Mon Mar 03 2014 2:18PM Report
VonTakala writes:


<span com_body"="">EVE Online is a chat client where people periodically shoot each other. Think IRC, albeit not as good graphics, and you've got EVE.

Mon Mar 03 2014 2:22PM Report
delta9 writes:

Tabula Rasa was also his, and what a flop that turned out to be.


The crafting looks insanely boring and I am surprised they are showing off such rubbish

Mon Mar 03 2014 2:24PM Report
Tekaelon writes:

We will see what it has to offer in the final game.  Point being that this is a first look of a game that has a long way to go.

I just hope SOTA is the kind of game world that let's the player do whatever they want. No central narrative, only a world filled with mystery and challenge. It would also be great if you could become a shop keeper. :)
Mon Mar 03 2014 3:33PM Report
rgarriott writes:

I do hope that those of you who are naysayers will keep an open mind. As JJ82 has noted, we are showing VERY early crafting, failure and incremental steps are still coming. And while TR had plenty of issues, we have learned a lot from it, and the issues were bigger than "the project" itself.

There is nothing I wish more than to convince the community of MMORPG that we are making a worthy "spiritual successor" to Ultima Online. I ask for your patience and feedback through its creation process.


Richard "Lord British" Garriott

Mon Mar 03 2014 3:35PM Report
Arglebargle writes:

Tabula Rasa wasn't really Garriott's baby, in its final version.  He'd gotten bumped fromt he project, and other developers put in charge of it to finish it.  That's partially due to Garriott not being a great project manager,  but NCSoft finished the game.


SotA is going to be a heavy crafting game, from what I've seen;  if you don't like that aspect, you probably won't like the game.

Mon Mar 03 2014 4:21PM Report
Storm_Cloud writes:

I'm sure RG that you came here to get an opinion about the current state of the crafting process and I believe you got what you came for. :)

I can only speak for myself, but I am always interested in a game with great crafting so therefor I am looking forward to the next visit and the updated version of your crafting system.

Mon Mar 03 2014 4:34PM Report
Brume writes:

Ultima Online was my very first experience with MMO, since that time i have try many differents games. It's easily in my Top 3 game i have ever play. 

The crafting mechanics was one of the most solid i ever experienced, not only by the process itself, but how the game was center around it. I'm playing Eve Online at the moment another great games, but like many other players im really looking for a fresh new start. I will look closely to the development of this one. Like JJ82 was saying, its in early Alpha, the potential and mechanics is more important then actual content. 

Mon Mar 03 2014 4:37PM Report
Colt47 writes: Actually, this looks like a start to a really good crafting system.  It's sort of like Terraria except with a discovery mechanism.   Mon Mar 03 2014 6:18PM Report
keitholi writes: Amazing how people jump all over this without knowing any details or facts. Its early alpha FFS and if it comes out even remotely as good as the crafting in the original UO was at the time, it will be awesome. Exceptional heavy Crossbow anyone? (especially early game) Tabula Rasa was ahead of its time I think. We can thank RG and Tabula for public quests and dynamic events becoming a mainstay in todays games. Relax and see what unfolds in the coming months before saying how boring the crafting is. Mon Mar 03 2014 6:20PM Report
flizzer writes: This looks to be pre-alpha .  I think this is a good start.  Amazing how people are already saying this game is doomed based on a pre-alpha look at crafting.  I say terrific start.  Looks to be a great crafting system and looking forward to seeing more. Mon Mar 03 2014 7:14PM Report
Geebus80 writes: lets just hope no one offers him a space trip, he will just abandon you all, let the game be ruined, run away and then sue the company for millions where you get none. Mon Mar 03 2014 7:44PM Report
mcrippins writes:

Also agree that UO had one of the best crafting systems in any game. It wasn't even super complex. People actually had to work at it. Which is something a lot of gamers aren't willing to do. They'd rather be spoonfed purples for days.. Keep up the good work RG. I'll definitely be giving this game a shot. Also, even though I never played TR (didn't hear about it until it was too late), I know a lot of people that said it was one of the greatest games they had ever played. 


Also, there will be naysayers no matter what. Everyone on this site is apparently a professional critic, and will tear apart anything you put in front of them until they find something they don't like. Then try to convince you to change it in some way. It's pretty annoying, as people can't just accept things for what they are. 

Mon Mar 03 2014 7:54PM Report
Vreejack writes:

Deep crafting is important for me. Now all it needs is a three-sided pvp system and I will pre-order


Mon Mar 03 2014 8:11PM Report
zellmer writes:

Great news, not dumbing down crafting into some kind of "have 2 of these, 1 of these, 10 of these" crap that does all the work for yourself and is mindless.

The more you see about the game the more you love because it's as far removed form Guild Wars/WoW type of han dholding garbage as you can possibly get.


Mon Mar 03 2014 9:47PM Report
Vulcifar writes: Crafting is by no way complete (they just put out 1st incarnation in Alpha), but indeed this looks to be the backbone of the system, with further complexities, crafting failures and the like to come.    Proactive community feedback from within, including a slew of developer input, should make for a pretty solid system to build from at release. Mon Mar 03 2014 11:47PM Report
rodingo writes:

I'm sure it's a place holder sound, but when he interacts with the wood cutting table it's just odd to hear an electric saw sound in a setting that really doesn't have electricity.  A bit nitpicky? Maybe, however it's just an observation and yes I know it's pre-alpha.  I just hope he remembers to swap that out. 

By the way I have nothing but respect for Lord British after I saw the documentary of him going into space to the ISS.  I never knew he was a 2nd generation astronaut/cosmonaut. Very cool.

/tips hat

Tue Mar 04 2014 12:04AM Report
Beowulfsam writes: Well, Mr. Gariott, do your best. Not gonna judge the game from alpha footage. One word of advice perhaps...choose testers that aren't drooling blind fanboys, and good luck.  Tue Mar 04 2014 3:12AM Report
Dreamo84 writes: Unfortunately there are enough people on this site that honestly don't like anything anymore. I wouldn't take it personally. Tue Mar 04 2014 5:19AM Report
haplo602 writes:

oh no, a half decent crafting system in an upcoming MMORPG !!! seems the world is going to end.


now seriously, looks good to me, but I hope there will be some automtion options for mass production available.


will this work on Linux ? that was not a trick question ...

Tue Mar 04 2014 7:28AM Report
wargfoot writes:

The crating system is the result of modern game design which offers complexity as a placebo for a well thought out simulation.  I offer two points that should illustrate why I hold this opinion.

#1: In Ultima Online a crafter would often run around in rags because of the weight limitations of the character.   In short, the simulation aspect of the game caused people to dress like the profession in which they were engaged.   I won't even consider a game where a player would consider crafting a bar stool while clad head to foot as a knight.  It looks utterly ridiculous.

#2: The crafting center is really little more than a crafting menu all conveniently located in one spot.  Instead of creating an immersive black smith forge or lumber camp we're given tables which are menu icons on the screen.   Again, immersion and story and simulation are suffering - it has been reduced to a spreadsheet with graphics.

I'll take a pass on yet another game world featuring complexity in place of environment, menus in place of carefully designed shops, and spreadsheets in place of exploration.

Tue Mar 04 2014 8:02AM Report
jtripper writes:

So many misinformed and misguided posts above.


Crafting is only in its basic framework.  Failure and skill checks have not yet been implemented.  Neither has repair or enchantment.  Also, there is electricity in this game.  This is not your typical medieval fantasy game and there is a backstory and lore behind why there is electricity in this game and it has to do with lunar rifts and outlanders (like us) entering this world.  There's also a struggle between old magic vs. new.


While crafting is important, it's not the only thing in this game.  Get the core systems working first before building out the world, which they're continuing to do.  Besides, they're not going to show you everything in the game so as to keep most of the world secret so it's new to explore and adventure in.


There's still a TON of work to be done so it remains to be seen if the game is both deep, complex and fun once all the core systems are complete.

Tue Mar 04 2014 10:21AM Report
Mors.Magne writes:

I think the Holy Grail of fantasy MMORPGs would be to create a procedurally generated world - (and to enable player-made crafting, such as housing etc).


The reason a procedurally generated world is important is because it enables an inexaustable supply of adventure. The trick would be to make the proceedural generation continuously interesting and varied.


This has never been done for fantasy MMORPGs before. Elite: Dangerous might do it for the sci fi MMORPGs, but we will have to wait and see.



Tue Mar 04 2014 10:50AM Report
Seir writes:

RG happened to be using the "list" mode for inventory interface, there is also a more traditional UO bag mode that looks just like the bags in UO and the crafting table has a gump that looks like an actual table.

Most of us use the list mode to experiment and discover recipies and personally I switch bag to the traditional bag look and feel when I'm just goofing around.

Tue Mar 04 2014 11:41AM Report
Tekmon writes: Looking very Ultima so far and that is awesome! Tue Mar 04 2014 11:51AM Report
Vulcifar writes:

Re: Crafting Center mentioned above 

<span com_body"="">The crafting center was an easy spot to access for testing purposes...for the alpha tests which are still ongoing.  We've yet to see if they will break this up later on, but that is what I've heard from a few.  My suggestion is that they definitely do, or you will have the Luna effect [UO], everything in one place with little to no reason to move from a locale.

Tue Mar 04 2014 12:20PM Report
Akulas writes: Seems annoying and unneccisary especially needing a mould to make a mould or needing an iron bar which you need tongs to smelt but you don't have any tongs which you are trying to smelt. Tue Mar 04 2014 12:46PM Report
muskeydogbo writes: Imo for an early alpha it looks promising ,best part could be not being able to make everything yourself ,as there is so much to make people should be able to cut out a piece of the market for themselves. Tue Mar 04 2014 1:47PM Report
Drevar writes:

Pretty sure something as simple as tongs (usually the first real tool a blacksmith makes) will be available as newbie gear when the blacksmith profession is chosen. 

Not sure why people bring up chicken-egg criticisms of a system that is in pre-alpha and cite it as a reason why the game will fail....

Tue Mar 04 2014 4:26PM Report
hazy writes:

I hate to be "that guy" but I'm having such a hard time getting excited about this game when the graphics look like they are from 2003. I hope they can do something to bring them up to at least decent standards.

Wed Mar 05 2014 1:28AM Report
kairel182 writes:

You're basically me when I saw Minecraft for the first time in early alpha.  My friend suggested it, even went so far as to buy me a copy and I was nothing be apprehensive.  When I got into the game and saw the depth (which at the time, vanilla was far more limited than now) I couldn't stop myself from playing it.  I went from playing in the early evening to looking out the window seeing the sun and confused as to what just happened.


That being said, gameplay is the only important factor.  Visual eye candy means nothing if you're having fun so I hope you give it a try if you're interested to see how its "feels" not how it "looks" in the end.

Wed Mar 05 2014 3:19AM Report
Mors.Magne writes: @ kairel182 - If you liked MineCraft, I doubt Lord British's game will be for you - I don't think it includes procedural generation. Wed Mar 05 2014 8:49AM Report
haplo602 writes: @hazy: the graphics looks fine to me ... functional and not ugly :-) Thu Mar 06 2014 2:25AM Report
Life6109 writes: This game is quite bad in many aspects. Bad graphics, non-existent gameplay, constant delays due to unskilled development team, and terrible combat system. Maybe Richard Garriot, who spent 30 million dollars on travel to a space station, should invest in his own game instead of selling house lots to his fans to fund the game. A game from 5 years ago
Mon Jun 01 2015 5:08PM Report