The Appeal of Crafting in RPGs

I’ve been thinking about the Angry GM’s ongoing series about crafting systems in RPGs. He’s been working through the creation of a crafting system that avoids the pitfalls of the thousands that have come before.

One of the tenets of the system is that it’s optional. Players can use it if crafting appeals to them, but the system doesn’t create hardship for those who opt out. This is a noble goal.

Loot allotments are currently the purview of the DM, whether they pick specific items or choose to roll on random tables. But a crafting system puts it (optionally) in the hands of the players. I know some of my players who would be all over crafting, and some who definitely would not. It appeals to the kind of player who wants mechanical control over their equipment the same way they pick spells or multiclass.

Even if your players don’t buy in, I still think a crafting system is useful to DMs. It’s a mechanical way to generate cool custom loot.

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