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Kittychanley

Brass

43 posts in this topic

So it's gotten to the point where this has almost become a running joke. About once a month, there will either be a message in IRC, in the support forum, or even in the TerraFirmaCraft subreddit from a new player, who is frustrated because they have put a tool mold in a ceramic vessel full of molten brass, and are wondering why it isn't casting the tool. When we inform said player that tools cannot be made of brass, they often get angry and claim that they were somehow misled. I've also seen a few players rage-quit because they used up all their copper to make essentially useless brass.

 

So, I have to ask. Did you ever make the mistake of thinking you could make tools out of brass? Do you remember what exactly made you think that it would work? Do you have any suggestions for edits to specific wiki pages to make this mistake less likely to happen?

 

I always try to ask the player why they thought it would work when they make their complaint, but I have yet to get a straight answer, or really any answer at all from most players. If I had to guess, it was simply because they weren't actually reading, saw brass at the top of the Alloy chart, and just assumed it would work.

 

I've moved brass down to be lower in the chart, and put the bronzes at the top, but other than that I'm really at a loss here. Some people just don't pay attention to what they are reading. They skim over pages and miss key information. Other than making this key information big, bold, and bright red, I feel like I'm at a complete loss at what I can do to stop this from happening.

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I'd be willing to bet money that it's just that "brass" and "bronze" sound similar and people get confused, either reading them wrong or getting them mixed up in their heads.

I suggest also adding notes to the Alloys table on the Metals page (I never use the Alloys article myself because it just duplicates information in the Metals article which has a lot more useful info).

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I was fooled a long time ago. That happens to everyone i guess. 

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I wasn't and tbh aren't sure how it happens either.

In order to make metals at the beginning, you're generally going to have to refer to the wiki being it's so different from vanilla.

 

The metals page - http://wiki.terrafirmacraft.com/Metals - quite clearly shows what you can make with each metal.

 

Must be something causing it though.

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The people that are making this mistake are probably not the same set of people that are reading the wiki, because it's pretty clear there and elsewhere. An in-game tutorial is the only real way to prevent this sort of thing in my opinion. And if you know your metallurgy it's pretty obvious why brass isn't useful for tools.

That said there's not a good reason why it's impossible to make a brass shovel head; the restriction is pretty hand-holding. I feel that you should be able to waste your metal on a sword that's nearly or completely useless (maybe for decoration/ceremony as the known brass weapons are), but that's just me.

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I think I was briefly, I noticed I had the materials to make brass but i promptly checked the wiki and found that it wasn't useful.

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I personaly would suggest completely separating the alloy table into two distinct tables. One is tool/weapon grade, the other decorationaly/used to make other alloys. They should have these descriptions in large, red letters above them. This should prevent the vast majority of confusion about what is usable and what is not.

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I feel that you should be able to waste your metal on a sword that's nearly or completely useless (maybe for decoration/ceremony as the known brass weapons are), but that's just me.

 

The mod is large enough as it is. Adding in even more items that are essentially useless doesn't add anything to gameplay really. That's why we removed all Tin, Zinc, Rose Gold, and Bismuth tools in 77.0.

 

 

I personaly would suggest completely separating the alloy table into two distinct tables. One is tool/weapon grade, the other decorationaly/used to make other alloys. They should have these descriptions in large, red letters above them. This should prevent the vast majority of confusion about what is usable and what is not.

 

They're already essentially split by the notes section. I'm not going to use large red letters on the wiki except for extremely important pages, like the installation page. It doesn't look good, and makes the wiki look tacky imho.

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Maybe rename it Decorative brass?

 

That's redundant. Brass in itself is decorative already. You rarely see anything in real life made completely out of brass that is used for anything other than delicate tasks or decoration.

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Brass and Bronze is right next to eachother with similar %, so why would one be a tool metal and the other one not ?!

 

If you can make stuff out of pure copper, then why the hell not make stuff out of brass ?

 

If i read wikipedia it says that real brass usage started in the 17th century but that there was a form of brass used already 300 BC..

 

 

IMHO it should be removed completely, its only use is to make red steel more complicated and does not have any serious historic meaning.

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If you can make stuff out of pure copper, then why the hell not make stuff out of brass ?

 

If i read wikipedia it says that real brass usage started in the 17th century but that there was a form of brass used already 300 BC..

 

IMHO it should be removed completely, its only use is to make red steel more complicated and does not have any serious historic meaning.

 

You can make stuff out of pure copper, but not out of brass because historically, copper tools were actually made, brass tools were not.

Historically speaking, brass was used for decorative purposes, which is why you cannot make tools out of it.

 

It will not be removed, and it hardly makes red steel "more complicated" considering that its made from materials that a starting player can gather. Brass is probably one of the easiest ingredients of red steel to get in the first place!

 

There was also the plan to make steam pipes made out of brass, but it was scrapped as we couldn't come up with a balanced way to implement said pipes.

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I never had that problem, everyone has their unobservant moments but there's no need for anyone to get angry about it. It never said you could make brass tools, so you shouldn't have to have people taking their anger out on you just because they assumed they can make anything out of any material. Moving it down in the alloy chart was a good idea, but I'd move it further from Bronze, they're right next to each other and although they're clearly labelled, people can get distracted. Maybe after rose gold/sterling silver and before black/blue/red steel since the 88-92% ratio looks so similar to bronze at a glance.

 

It's good that you want to improve the wiki and make things clearer, but people only have themselves to blame for making brass, not you.

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Never had the problem. I always read the wiki. But if we should look for solutions to the problem I think a good idea to divide the alloys in two tables the first one for all the alloys that can be used to make tools and the second lower in the page for alloys used to make red/blue steel. So this way even players that just skin the page should see that those alloys are not for tools. 

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The only time I made brass while trying to make a tool was because I confused zinc and tin. maybe they confused what ores to dump in?

Or you could seporate the wiki page on alloys/metals to tool metals/alloys and 'non-tool/ingredient' metal/alloys.

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I just checked the alloys page -- I think that should be enough to tell new players that brass cannot be used to make tools... granted, I'd assumed the fact that it is brass would have done that too but, well, there you go.

 

I've seen people suggesting spliting the chart up and I think that might be the way to go -- even just a small break or an empty row might help a few people out. Another idea in case nothing seems to work is to just put brass at the bottom. Does it make sense? No. But, to put it bluntly, if it was after red/blue steel they'd have to be full potato to make that mistake.

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Another possibility is language, if you are not native english you might not have a clue what brass actually is and may confuse it with something else, as there are 3 bronze types it could be confused with a 4th one.

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I tried to make brass tools when when I started playing, but I didn't feel angry or like I was wasting my time, I just felt stupid that I had wasted copper which is really hard to find when you are new to the mod. It didn't bother me and I think it is actually fun to have so many metal types each which very different qualities.

 

btw I am not a native speaker and I have no idea what brass means.

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That's redundant. Brass in itself is decorative already. You rarely see anything in real life made completely out of brass that is used for anything other than delicate tasks or decoration.

Bearings, fittings, bushings, etc. Brass is used pretty extensively in industry. My firehose nozles at work are usually made of brass, too.

 

If you're going to ask for advice and suggestions to a problem, I'd think you'd be a bit more gracious when receiving it, even if it wasn't what you're looking for.

 

Redundant or not, I think the decorative brass suggestion is by far the most elegant solution I've seen because it doesn't rely on someone reading a webpage or assuming that they understand metallurgy enough to know that brass is not historically used for tools.

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Another possibility is language, if you are not native english you might not have a clue what brass actually is and may confuse it with something else, as there are 3 bronze types it could be confused with a 4th one.

that was one of the reason why I spent more time checking the Wiki - I don't remember having any problem understanding that Brass was of no use for tools.IMO the Alloys page is really clear about Brass not being used to create tools.If something is to be changed, I would suggest, as Djakuta did above, that the useless alloys are separated from the others as it is done on the Ores & Minerals page
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Another question that should fit in here:

 

Why can you make an Anvil out of Rose Gold but nothing else ?

 

Its those 2 metals/alloys that are a bit confusing (along with all the ones that you can find and turn into ingots but have absolutely no use...)

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Bearings, fittings, bushings, etc. Brass is used pretty extensively in industry. My firehose nozles at work are usually made of brass, too.

 

If you're going to ask for advice and suggestions to a problem, I'd think you'd be a bit more gracious when receiving it, even if it wasn't what you're looking for.

 

Redundant or not, I think the decorative brass suggestion is by far the most elegant solution I've seen because it doesn't rely on someone reading a webpage or assuming that they understand metallurgy enough to know that brass is not historically used for tools.

 

 

Bearings, fittings, bushings, etc. are all outside of the timeframe of TFC. One of the only uses for brass that is within the timeframe of TFC that I can find is for ammunition, but since TFC will never add firearms, that argument is moot.

 

I'm not sure exactly how you expect me to be more gracious about receiving advice. The only thing I can think of would be prefacing every suggestion that I shoot down with "Thanks, but no thanks." We're adults here, and while I am asking for help, that doesn't mean that I have to bend over backwards to help that I will not use. The topic in question was in regards to how I can edit the wiki to make it more clear, not how I can edit the game. And even if I was asking about how to edit the game, adding "Decorative" as a prefix to brass still isn't a suggestion that would be implemented, because not only is it redundant, it clutters up the screen. For example:

 

Posted Image

 

And that's just the english localisation. In other languages the word for "Decorative" is even longer, and would take up even more space on the screen. 

 

Another question that should fit in here:

 

Why can you make an Anvil out of Rose Gold but nothing else ?

 

Its those 2 metals/alloys that are a bit confusing (along with all the ones that you can find and turn into ingots but have absolutely no use...)

 

Rose Gold anvils exist for the same reason that panning exists. It's a last ditch solution for players who simply cannot find resources because their world seed was bad. Rose Gold is created using copper and gold, two materials that can both be obtained through panning. If for whatever reason a player simply can't find the tin, zinc, silver, or bismuth required to make enough of one of the bronzes to make an anvil as well as a bloomery to move onwards to the next stage, they can make a Rose Gold anvil instead from materials gotten from panning and save up the other materials towards making the bloomery. It allows them to progress forward, but still limits them to actually creating bronze eventually, because they cannot use the rose gold to make tools, or the bloomery.

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And why does a bloomery require any metal at all ? It was built by the romans simply with clay.

 

I mean you ask why stuff is misleading and maybe the answer is that for outsiders or new players a lot of stuff is just not intuitive and being ultra petty about historical details that no one knows without checking the wiki just to justify how stuff made it into the game is NOT helping.

 

You need a copper anvil to make a bronze anvil... but you can have bronze ingots before copper ones. But can't make stuff out of brass, because somewhen three millenia ago they only made shiny non-tool objects out of the stuff... objects that you CANT make in this game/mod but the material for them DOES exist! It doesn't make a lot of sense and i say that as an experienced player in this mod.

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If you are making a rose gold anvil rather than a bronze one, you won't be able to make a Bloomery anyway, as I'm pretty sure you can only use bronze for that? If you get yourself into this position, you're better off just generating a new seed. I get to bronze or at least have an idea of viability pretty early on, before I have fruit, and much in the way of crops. So you aren't wasting too much time.

 

As for the original question, yes I did once make brass (as that's all I could make) and expected to be able to make a pick with it. When I looked up why and realised it was an alloy used to make...whatever it was... it sat in the vessel for ever. I swore a bit, probably grumbled a lot, and moved on. 

 

Stone age, Bronze age, iron age...I can't remember there being a Brass age! These ages define what material tools were made from. I'm not so sure where the "Modern age" fits into that though.

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Reread Kitty's post. She never remotely said you could make bloomery out of rose gold. Say you have a great seed. So much copper, a bit of gold so much rich tasty iron and other resources you want. But you only found enough tin for 32 ingots. Enough for a bloomery to process all that iron, but not enough for bronze anvil to process those ingots.

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