Welcome to Swords & Potions! an online shop management game in which your goal is to become the greatest shopkeeper of Tomagar by taking care of all kinds of customers in an RPG-like world. Indeed, you will meet Knights, Healers, and many more, browsing through your store and willing to buy your valuables to make their quest expeditions easier.
In this fifth part, you will probably get a headache if you don't like numbers. But if you're here and read the introduction, you probably do. So, here we go!
Or click here to get back to the table of contents of the guide and avoid the headache.
Workers and their skillsEdit
Workers have 5 different skills, each with a particular use. Your first two workers will always have a stat distribution of 8/8/7~15/8. As they level up, points will be randomly added to any of those stats, with a single rule: for each level up, at least one point will be added to a crafting skill. All the rest is 100% random, although it seems that higher skills tend to grow faster than the other, often leading to a huge difference. This can be used for the best, but you're not concerned about this for the moment.
Let's have a look at the different skills:
1: Learning: The higher it is, the faster experience is accumulated. Experience is gained only for crafting or researching.
2: Innovation: The higher it is, the faster researching new recipes will be. Each item requires points to be unlocked; the amount is hidden, and converted for you into an amount of game hours needed to complete the research.
3: Cooperation: This skill has more than one use: the higher it is...
- the faster the gauge is filled (up to 1000). These points are used for cooperative quests and building your guildmates' improvements.
- the least the penalty for cooperative item crafting will be. The game applies a penalty onto crafting skills if the crafted item requires more than one worker to be produced. The more workers needed, the higher the penalty. The formula for penalty is:
- ((100 - Actual coop) / 4) * (Required crafters - 1) % of crafting skills
- If your coop score exceeds 100, no bonus will be allowed. However, it WILL be taken into account for the required hours calculation the game gives you, sometimes leading to a wrong number.
4 & 5: Crafting skills: Determines how many points per hour the worker will contribute to the production of an item. Only one crafting skill will be taken into account each hour, starting from the first one. Once the requirements for the item are met, it is produced. More details coming up.
6: Salary: Daily wages to be paid at the end of the day. Increases with each level.
7: Morale: Doesn't decrease unless you tell your worker to hurry up or are the victim of an intimidation. If not full, the worker's crafting power will decrease proportionally to morale lost. Can be refilled with days off, cheer (requires tokens) or, best option, by leveling up.
8: Experience bar: Progress to next level.
Knowledge on workers experienceEdit
Experience is gained proportionally to the Learning skill. However, some events will alter the gain:
- Crafting or researching an item for which the required research level is over the worker's level.
- Crafting or researching a cooperative item: contrary to the aforementioned rule, your worker's level may be over his required research level and still gain exp.
- Mechanics for those two last statements are still unknown.
Also, your worker will continue to gain experience without penalty even if (s)he can be leveled up. The only thing you have to keep in mind is that you won't know how many levels beyond the first one you have accumulated. This means you can keep a worker at any level you want, which is good to keep the wages low; this will be useful in the early levels, when workers would otherwise gain levels absurdly quickly.
More experience points are awarded per hour for more complex items. For example, in one day with no staff changes, level increases, guild point changes, or improvement changes, the following rates were observed:
- Magic drink (67xp/h) vs Alert dust (53xp/h) vs research (80xp/h) (level 78 sorceress)
- Fine great sword (66xp/h) vs Knife -- (52xp/h) vs research (73xp/h) (level 89 blacksmith)
- Rich cloak (49xp/h) vs Soft gloves -- (49xp/h) vs research (64xp/h) (level 71 tailor)
- Composite bow (66xp/h) vs Club -- 66xp/h vs research (78xp/h) (level 82 carpenter)
Knowledge on crafting requirementsEdit
Although you won't get any information about that in the game, items have crafting requirements that need to be met for the item to be produced: the amount of hours needed for the crafting that the game gives you is just a "translation".
Let's go with an example: the Knife, as you can see on its own page, requires 50 points in (Forging) to be completed. As your blacksmith (I'm still assuming you started with him) starts with 15 points in Forging, it will take him 4 hours to produce it: 15 + 15 + 15 is 45, which is not enough, and he'll need a fourth hour to finish it.
Also, hours in the game can't be divided or split. For the above example, your blacksmith should end his crafting after 3 hours and 20 minutes. But as I said, hours can't be divided, leading him to work for 4 full hours. And this is where stats will make a difference. Let's see: (≥ means "is greater or equals")
- 15 Forging: 15 + 15 + 15 + 15 ≥ 50 => 4 hours
- 16 Forging: 16 + 16 + 16 + 16 ≥ 50 => 4 hours
- 17 Forging: 17 + 17 + 17 ≥ 50 => 3 hours
As you can see, jumping from 16 to 17 will shorten the crafting time by 1 whole hour. You would be able to craft 4 instead of 3 in the same timeframe.
There are some events that will modify your crafting power:
+ Successfully intimidating another player's employees (12 game hours)
- Loss of morale
- Being the victim of an intimidation
- Temporary loss of improvements due to vandalism
- Cooperative crafting penalty
Rest assured, none of these negative effects can't be cured.
All items in the game have requirements that are multiples of 25. Thus, you will want to get crafting skills that, once multiplied, can reach the lowest closer amount above every multiple of 25. Here's a quick reference for you:
Crafting efficiency quick referenceEdit
- Requires 25
- 3 hours: 9
- 2 hours: 13
- Requires 50
- 4 hours: 13
- 3 hours: 17
- 2 hours: 25
- Requires 75
- 5 hours: 15
- 4 hours: 19
- 3 hours: 25
- 2 hours: 38
Knowing these numbers will be a great asset for you, as you will probably want to reach them as soon as possible to have efficient AND cheap employees. This will be proved right in the next chapter of this guide. For example, you'll try to level up your blacksmith early until he reaches 17 points in forging and 9 in welding (for the Circlet) and keep him unleveled for a long time to avoid useless spendings.
Mechanics of haggling and suggestingEdit
Haggling: not like real lifeEdit
When a customer wants to buy an item, you have the possibility to haggle the price (only once though) if you have that item available. If successful, the price will raise. If not, your customer will leave without giving you the chance to accept his initial offer. Sucks, right? This means you will have to choose carefully when you want to haggle.
Haggling, instead of worker skills, have a % of success, which is not random, but varies accordingly to a couple of factors:
- Customer class (Remember: the higher the intelligence score would be in a RPG, the harder it will be)
- Silver-Tongue (Said to be worthless, especially after 25 points have been involved)
- Initial offer: the higher it is, the harder haggling will be
- Mercantile will also modify the chance of succeeding. Mercantile increases the initial offer a customer makes for your item. However, chance of haggling will be calculated on the normal price (s)he would offer, before the mercantile bonus applies. It seems to me that you would still lose some % on the way, but the increased offers widely make up for that loss; and even then, I'm able to succeed way more low % haggles than what one would expect, so there might just be a display issue when you have a high mercantile skill (and by high I mean a triple digit number)
After a successful haggle, you are still allowed to refuse the sale, or to make the customer wait. Should you choose that last option, you won't be allowed to haggle again when you come back to that customer and the price will be reverted back to the initial offer.
You can also still suggest another item... how handy, that's the next subchapter!
Suggesting: how a hat is better than a swordEdit
Suggestions are handy in that unless you have a hundred bucks to spend, you won't probably have every different item in the game. Suggesting an item is a bit more complicated because of the numerous rules to it, but it's easy once you get the main idea:
- Suggestions can't be haggled
- Successfully suggesting an item will thus sell it immediately, for the same ratio usual price to offered price as the desired item.
- Example: a customer offers 1040 gold for a Vial of healing (usual price: 800). That's 130% of the usual price. Should you succeed to sell another item, you will be paid 130% of that item's usual price
- Suggesting another item when you have the desired item decreases the success rate
- Suggesting an item in the SAME category than the desired item has a better chance of success
- Suggesting a slightly more expensive item has a better chance of success
- Those two last rules can be mixed together for a greater chance of success: up to 90%
- Suggesting a slightly more expensive item in another category has up to 55% chance of success, 62% for crossbows, guns and instruments
- Suggesting a cheaper item in the same category makes the success rate decrease proportionally to the price difference, and drops rapidly
- Suggesting an item in the customer's prefered items category has a better chance of success, regardless of the price difference (still, don't suggest a Flute instead of a Ripieno). Archers are more likely to accept bows than other items, for instance
- Potions, herbs and scrolls have a lower chance of success
- Failed suggestions will result in a loss of experience, 15% of the potential sale price of item you were suggesting. (Example if customer offers you 1200 for a 1000 item and you greedy and suggest a 10000 item knowing succesful suggest will get you 12000. However you fail, you lose 15% of 12000 that is 1800xp.)
- As a rule of thumb, never try to suggest items that are more than 3 times as expensive as the desired item, as it will probably result in a 0% suggestion, canceling a huge chunk of your daily experience.
- Experience is only substracted from your daily total, experience earned from previous days won't ever be taken away. So you can suggest without penalty (as a replacement for things you don't already have) if you haven't sold anything yet in a day.
Only suggest when you...
- Don't have the desired item
- Have another item, preferably more expensive, in the same category
- Are OK with the usual price to offered price ratio
- When the usual price to offered price ratio is really high and you have an expensive item to sell (advisable only if you're in financial danger)
Now that you're aware of all this, let's enter one of the shortest chapters of this guide. Since the way up to level 5 isn't tricky, you should be ok. At that point, quests will start overwhelming you, and we'll try to take the best out of them to ensure you a safe career as a shopkeeper.