Invention has had quite a developmental history – and the skill isn’t even out yet. Since it was first announced two years ago, the misfit skill has gone from original production partner to its gathering counterpart Divination, to being announced that its core concept would just be integrated into all other skills, to being the first elite skill. It’s been a winding road for sure, but one that I think produced the best outcome. Its present state has great potential to progress the game into a new area of advanced end-game skill content and will make use of the bloat of otherwise junk items. Let’s take a look at what the skill has become in case you missed the memo at this year’s Runefest.
The main concept of the skill is largely unchanged, surprisingly. It stays true to weapon and armor augmentation to give bonuses and added benefits to the wearer, but changed is some ways. Instead of producing mountains of bronze weapons with a wimpy perk, it has been confirmed that only 70+ weapons will be able to be enhanced. Tools will also be able to be combined and made more useful for those of us not interested in just killing stuff. These enhancements, called “perks” will vary in different strength tiers like loyalty auras and we’ll be able to add up to four to our gear. Depending on this complexity the cosmetic appearance changes of the item featuring cogs, steam, and other mechanical overlays over the original design.
In a nutshell, you will be able to disassemble anything that is alchable in the game to basic components, of which there are already a staggering number of. These components relate to perks that, when added to your 70+ gear, give the certain perks. A list of such perks was shown off in the Runefest presentation. For example, the “Runesaving” perk would surely be pretty useful on magic staves. Glancing at the list shows pretty awesome potential, such as the “Slow Time”, “Ultimate”, “Looting”, and “Razor-sharp” perks. However, they said there will be negative and non-beneficial perks that sometimes come with others or are random. Some that sound as such are the “Booby-Trapped”, “Clumsy”, and “Unfortunate” options. We’ll have to see how these play out.
Invention is host to a lot of unique features not seen in other skills. Based on your experiences in game, you will draw inspiration for new item recipes from quests and other interactions. Such discoveries will take place at your workbench, which will be portable so you can improve your inventing anywhere. There will also be tech trees that players pick their path based on different creature’s technology. If you want to deal with electricity then cave goblin tech should be your focus. If you’d like improved mining techniques or new cannons then dwarven tech is an option. Other trees will be released in the future so we can keep inventing new things even if we max out a certain tree.
One thing you won’t have to worry about is burning through the skill. Elite skills will cap out at 120, just like dungeoneering, but the experience curve is much more extreme, so much so that rather than 92 being “halfway” experience-wise in a normal skill, the halfway point will be level 77. This will mean a LOT more experience is needed to max out – with the virtual level max being rumored to be 150!
There is a massive amount of potential in this latest incarnation of Invention. It really paves the way to how beneficial and game changing it and other elite skills will be. It may have taken some time to get there, but Invention seems to have re-invented itself into a skill that may end up being an aspect of the game that we won’t be able to see ourselves without after its release.