Crafting systems in various games can be either a vital gameplay mechanic necessary for success and survival, or a fun mini-game allowing you to turn seemingly useless trash picked from your enemies corpses into valuable items for a much lower cost than what your local merchant asks for.
It’s not all farming in Stardew Valley – soon after your arrival to the village you will find that many items important for your farm can – and should – be crafted. You start off knowing a handful of recipes, but you can increase your crafting library by learning new skills, buying schematics from merchants, or receiving them as a gift from friendly inhabitants of the Valley. You can craft a number of items, starting from simple cobblestone paths, moving up to fertilizers and sprinklers to help you take care of your crops, through artisan tools that allow you to, say, turn eggs into mayonnaise or ferment fruit into a beverage, to even bombs, should you need an explosion to happen. Both Fortnite Battle Royale and the PVE mode of the cartoony shooter game are quite crafting-heavy.
During your games, you will spend a lot of time chopping down wood and mining stone or metal to be used in building structures and traps for your enemies, as well as gathering materials and schematics for weapons and ammo to give you an edge over other players. All that while looking over your shoulder to make sure you won’t be sniped by a inconspicuously looking bush. Dragon Age Inquisition gives you some general schematics for new weapons and armor, but it’s up to you to choose what kind of ore and fabric to use. Each type of metal or cloth can give your crafted items different features, depending on the crafting slot you use it for – for instance, your mage can get a bonus to their willpower stat if you check paysafe casinos in the utility slot of their new robe.
If you choose silk instead, they will receive a bonus to their magic stat. The material used also changes the appearance of the crafted item – this means you can force all of your companions to wear the incredibly stylish yellow plaidweave. Dead Rising 2 allows you to create a bunch of ingenious and hilarious combination weapons to make your zombie-killing more effective – and much more fun. For instance, you know how zombies enjoy eating human flesh? Grab a severed hand and put a dynamite stick in it – your mindless enemies won’t be able to contain their hunger and will swallow the explosive, allowing you to make them go boom from within. Gluing a machete to a toy helicopter will result in the creation of heliblade, a weapon perfect for decapitating zombies.
Combination weapons can be crafted by trial and error, though they will be more powerful if you use a special recipe found in-game. The base game offers 50 different combinations, and the DLCs come with their own recipes, such as a saw launcher made with a bunch of saw blades and a tennis ball launcher. For the most part, crafting is an optional mechanic in Divinity: Original Sin and its sequel. But upgrading your weapons, creating special arrows or spellbooks, mixing ingredients into powerful potions and cooking a warm, home-made stamina-enhancing meal can save you a ton of coin and bother. The crafting system in the first game boils down to combining two elements to get a finished product, or a more advanced crafting ingredient to be further combined.
You can rely on recipes found in books, or let your imagination run free and mix-and-match ingredients to see what happens – though that’s not advisable with potions, which can turn out to have adverse effects if you mix the wrong things. For some enhancements, you might have to find a special location, like a furnace, or a mobile kitchen but the majority of items can be created on the run. Who doesn’t like a good bowl of tomato sauce made with tomatoes and a hammer? Divinity: Original Sin 2 took crafting to a new level. You can now combine up to 5 different ingredients for a variety of results. An especially nifty crafting feature is creating new skills and spells by combining the spare skill- and spellbooks in your inventory.
For example, a pyrokinetic spellbook combined with a scoundrel skillbook allows you to gain the ability to sabotage your enemies by making their grenades explode in their pockets. No game makes grind as fun as Warframe – and since that sweet, sweet grind is centered around crafting, Warframe deserves a spot on this list. Whether it’s a shiny new weapon, a sentinel buddy to follow you around or a whole new Warframe allowing you to change your playstyle, you can craft it using the resources obtained during your gameplay.
Successfully finishing a mission or killing a boss will often be rewarded with a blueprint, which is the base for creating any item. Once you have obtained the desired blueprint, you will have to collect the necessary materials, and then spend some credits (also earned during your gameplay) to commence the crafting process. Of course, you can spend some real-life money to speed up the process or even skip the crafting entirely, but where’s the fun in that? Terraria allows you to roam around a sandboxy, colorful, pixeltastic world slaying various monsters and building your settlement, as well as collecting a huge amount of different materials. Those materials, with the help of a workbench, a furnace, and other types of crafting stations can be turned into a huge variety of weapons to slay enemies on your dungeon crawls, or items for your house which will make the difference between a primitive shack and a sprawling settlement full of colorful inhabitants. The amount of items you can create is staggering and it’s still steadily increasing.
No list about crafting in games would be complete without Minecraft. Seeing how Minecraft is basically a huge box of LEGOs turned into a video game, creating new items out of the blocks in your possession is obviously a vital feature of the gameplay. Not only do you have to use the correct amount and type of materials, you also have to put them in a certain pattern to get the item you want. Some basic items can be crafted straight from your inventory. For more complex items, you will have to use a workbench, which gives you a bigger grid to drag your ingredients onto. As with building blocks, the amount of combinations is huge.
It’s hard to choose just one survival game that does crafting right, because crafting is the meat of virtually all of them. Rust, Ark: Survival Reborn, The Forest, 7 days to die, Life is Feudal – choosing from the wide offer boils down to choosing your favourite setting. Differences aside, they all share the same approach to crafting – unless you enjoy constantly re-spawning naked with a rock as your sole companion, gathering resources and turning them into more and more powerful items is a must. Whether you’re looking to deter hostile players, dinosaurs, medieval knights, zombies or cannibalistic mutants, you will have to put an effort into creating and upgrading your weapons and base.
You will probably start off by creating simple weapons, such as bows, arrows, hatchets – don’t worry though, with enough skill, materials and the proper workstation, you’ll be able to move up explosives, saddles for your pet dinos, rocket launchers and shotgun turrets, in no time. It’s all in the name – Factorio is a game about creating factories. You start off as a survivor of a spaceship crash on a remote planet full of resources. At first you have to harvest them manually, but pretty quickly you will have to automate your mining and crafting process, creating an infrastructure and researching new technologies to power your blooming economy. Automated mining equipment, generators and electric lines to deliver electricity to your production lines, train tracks for logistics – soon enough, you will create an industrial landscape on the rich, hostile world.
Did we mention hostile? Yup, all your ingenious creations and structures have to be protected from the local creatures, which aren’t too thrilled about the changes to their environment caused by the expansion of your new civilization. Good luck! This concludes our list of top ten games with the best crafting systems.