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NOTE: These are some ideas for a relatively realistic crafting system, that gives players room to customize the created items in many ways, and makes it possible to create similar items in many different ways from different materials, with somewhat different resulting properties.

Basically items are created by applying a crafting action on a lump of raw material, with a specified item type as the desired output. Different types provide different functions. E.g. a sword type provides good cutting functionality, mediocre carving functionality, and slight piercing functionality. Materials and completed items can be manipulated by heating or cooling, or soaking in liquids. New materials can be created by mixing together various liquid materials. Some material mixtures may produce chemical reactions that alter the material or its properties, or emit heat.

Raw materials

  • From ground
    • Water
    • Stones
    • Sands
    • Metals (ores)
    • Precious stones
    • Special materials (sulphur, gypsum, red earth, and so on)
    • Oil
  • From plants
    • Woods
    • Fruits
    • Herbs
    • Mushrooms
    • Oils
    • Fibers
    • Poisons
  • From animals
    • Meats
    • Blood
    • Fats
    • Skins
    • Bones
    • Horns
    • Wools or Hair

Material abilities / properties:


  • Gaseous
  • Liquid
  • Paste (like wet clay)
  • Grainy (like flour, sand, grains)
  • Solid

Material properties

  • Density
  • Viscosity? (for liquids?)
  • Friction
  • Brittleness/elasticity (for solids) (how easy it shatters from hard impacts)
  • Hardness (for solids) (how sharp it can be made / how well it cuts other materials)
  • Temperature capacity (CHECK: Is there temperature conductivity too? - does in real world)
  • Grain size (for grainy)
  • Permeability (how well liquids penetrate into the material. Affects how easy the material is to dye.
  • Stickiness (for liquids - determines whether it will create a coating on a soaked item (enabling e.g. painting items))

State changes

  • Melting temperature & resulting material (e.g. ice or iron will melt at some temperature, to water / molten iron. )
  • Freezing temperature & resulting material (e.g. water or magma will freeze to ice/stone respectively at some temperature)
  • Changing time & resulting material (e.g. liquid cement will solidify into cement after some hours)
  • Burning temperature & resulting item/material? Also amount of energy released, and how easily the fire spreads in the material??

Manipulation affordances

For each manipulation type, there is some maximum precision level achievable, which also depends on used tools and skill.

  • Carvable (carving the material with a sharp object allows shaping it)
  • Forgable (hammering and heating the material allows shaping it)
  • Tailorable (the material is sheet like, and can be cut and sewed in)
  • Joinable? (or sawable? carpenterable?) (the item can be sawed, drilled, nailed, and screwed)
  • Shapeable (the material is clay like, can be hand shaped or shaped on a throwing wheel)


Casting can be done by filling a mold with a liquid (or paste?), making the liquid solid, and removing the mold. The liquid can be made solid by one of the processes mentioned in the state changes above (freezing/cooling or changing into a solid after some time).

Mixing materials

Liquids, pastes, and grainy objects are possible to mix together, producing a compound material. There may also be some chemical reactions, depending on the materials... A chemical reaction transforms some of the input materials to a new kind of material. E.g. sand, water, and powdered limestone changes into wet cement when mixed together. Things like dyes might also get mixed in.. hmm.. Perhaps everything gets mixed up, and if there are some materials that react with each other they do, and if there are some property modifying materials they are applied too, such as the dyes..

Soaking materials

Solid items can be soaked in a liquid, allowing the liquid to coat the solid object, or permeate into the solid object. The coating can alter the item properties in various ways.. Examples are: dyes, curing hides, acid baths for intruders, marinades, oil soaked torches, water soaked roofs, mud or blood splashed clothes, etc.

A coating can also be removed sometimes, through wear and tear or through soaking in another liquid that reacts with the coating and liquifies it, washing it away.

There's basically two types of results from soaking - permeated (sp) liquids, that have penetrated into the item, and coatings, that are a layer of liquid on top of the object. The coating usually runs of, if the liquid isn't sticky enough. If it is sticky, it will stay on until removed in some way.

You could add waterproofing and fire-retarding here. Plus don't forget repellants and attractants.

Item forms

NOTE: The division between form and function for items, and the way they can be parameterized still needs some more thought.

Divided into some main categories containing item forms. The item forms might be parameterized by the crafters (e.g. size & material & color of a curved sword).

  • Simple shapes
    • Sphere
    • Lump
    • Brick
    • Tile
    • Beam
  • Tools & Weapons
    • Straight sword
    • Curved sword
    • Knife
    • Double sided Axe
    • Single sided Axe
    • Hammer
    • Bow
  • Clothing
  • Food
  • Armor
  • Wagons
  • Building parts
  • Machine parts

Item functions

An item form may provide zero or more functions wich can easily be performed by it.

  • Cutting tool (knife like)
  • Carving tool (shaping an object by removing pieces of it)
  • Hammering tool (shaping an object by delivering impacts on it, or driving down nails etc)
  • Drilling tool (making holes by rotating and removing pieces of the material)
  • Sawing tool (cutting something by removing particles along a line)
  • Sewing tool (needle like)
  • Screwing tool (providing rotation movement for attaching screws)
  • Piercing tool (making holes by pushing)
  • Mold (of some item form)
  • Shooting weapon
  • Wearable (on some body part)