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ShinobiG

Scrap Metal

26 posts in this topic

So, I did a quick search of the forums, and I don't think anyone has suggested this already. (Correct me if I'm wrong.) It's also possible that the devs have already come up with an idea like this, but I thought I'd give it a shot anyway.

Basically, my idea is based around something that's always bothered me about TFC, and Vanilla Minecraft too.

Tools magically disappearing into the void whenever they break. It goes against basic physics. When an object is damaged, it doesn't become less of an object, it just changes shape. So what happened to all the iron in my iron pick!

So, what should be done about it? Well, you know how in TFC1 you'd craft a tool head and attach it to a stick to get the tool? Well now, when a tool breaks it drops a broken tool head. Which can either be repaired on an anvil (turning it back into a regular tool head), or melted down to retrieve the metal used to make it.

In case some people think this is overpowered, it would be configurable. You could set the amount of metal you'd get back from a broken tool head, change whether or not you can repair them, and (assuming tool quality is a thing) you could toggle whether or not the tool's quality would decrease upon repair. (Or even set it so that if your skill was high enough, the tool would have higher quality then it did before it broke.)

Alternatively, it could be made so that a tool never really broke, and the speed it worked at/damage it did shrunk instead. (Although maybe the tools could still be reforged, to raise the quality again.)

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1 hour ago, ShinobiG said:

So what happened to all the iron in my iron pick!

You left a microscopic bit of behind every time you used it. Then you ground off great big microscopic bits when you sharpened it after it had become little more than skinny hammer. It didn't break - it got so worn down that it couldn't be repaired.

Maybe you could melt the "broken tool head" down in a crucible for 10 units but that would require code and an item number and an item graphic for each type of tool metal, which just isn't worth it.

(Vanilla MC addresses this in an abstract way with the repairing of tools.)

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One of my favorite things in vanilla 1.9 is that you can make the texture of a tool change based on it's durability.  So you can literally watch your pickaxe wear down to a useless nub as you power through a ton of stone.

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54 minutes ago, Ziusudra said:

You left a microscopic bit of behind every time you used it. Then you ground off great big microscopic bits when you sharpened it after it had become little more than skinny hammer. It didn't break - it got so worn down that it couldn't be repaired.

Maybe you could melt the "broken tool head" down in a crucible for 10 units but that would require code and an item number and an item graphic for each type of tool metal, which just isn't worth it.

(Vanilla MC addresses this in an abstract way with the repairing of tools.)

Assuming you can still melt down metal, you could just make broken tool heads act like ore. You'd just toss it in with your latest mining batch.

Also, although your explanation is pretty sound, there'd still be plenty of recoverably large chunks. Even if you didn't get back all the iron, you'd still get some. (Probably most of it, really.) Thus, the configurable metal returns.

Besides, scrap metal has always been a thing. I imagine it was especially a big deal back when metal was still a fairly expensive material.

9 minutes ago, Konlii said:

One of my favorite things in vanilla 1.9 is that you can make the texture of a tool change based on it's durability.  So you can literally watch your pickaxe wear down to a useless nub as you power through a ton of stone.

It makes a lot more sense that way, yeah. (Plus it looks cool.) Still a bit silly, but sometimes you have to deal with a little video game logic.

Over all though, I gotta admit that my main motive for this mod was a personal quirk of mine. (I don't like nonrenewable resources in video games. Even if the amount of iron is practically infinite, it still irks me that I have to travel farther and farther to get more.)

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I prefer the second alternative, the item loses quality.

This suggrstion can seem not very important, but IMO this will change a lot the gameplay, so that you don't make a new axe because yours broke, but why you want to have a good tool.

I suggest that the losing of durability will make the tool mining slower, with de decrease of quadratic, with this equation:

s=100-(10-q/10)^2

Where s and q are the mining speed and the quality(% of the durability), both as a percentage.

Example:

100% quality, 100% speed

90% quality, 99% speed

80% quality, 96% speed

50% quality, 75% speed

25% quality,  43,75% speed

10% quality, 19% speed

1% quality, 1,99% speed

Edited by Diego il Catanico Jr
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Thanks for the input, your formula is very well thought through.

One question though, in TFC1, quality was measured numerically, and was higher the higher your smithing skill was. So, assuming that's still a thing, how do we translate that to percentage? And how does a smith's skill figure into it?

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20 hours ago, ShinobiG said:

Thanks for the input, your formula is very well thought through.

One question though, in TFC1, quality was measured numerically, and was higher the higher your smithing skill was. So, assuming that's still a thing, how do we translate that to percentage? And how does a smith's skill figure into it?

We don't need to convert it to a percentage.

If an item has 110 total durability, for example, when it has 990 durability it will be at 90% of the quality.

 

 

I forgot to say that "s" is the damage, too, and that when the item reaches 0 durability it breaks like in vanilla. But no-one will be still using the tool, as it will be very slow.

Edited by Diego il Catanico Jr
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If this gets to be a thing either make tools repairable or allow us to melt them at any point of its durability state, because there is no way I am gonna use a pick with less than 75% efficiency.

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2 hours ago, Diego il Catanico Jr said:

We don't need to convert it to a percentage.

If an item has 110 total durability, for example, when it has 990 durability it will be at 90% of the quality.

 

 

I forgot to say that "s" is the damage, too, and that when the item reaches 0 durability it breaks like in vanilla. But no-one will be still using the tool, as it will be very slow.

So a blacksmith with a low smithing skill will create a tool that starts at a lower durability? Or are you saying that a smith's skill just shouldn't figure into it? Both are interesting propositions.

46 minutes ago, lJuanGB said:

If this gets to be a thing either make tools repairable or allow us to melt them at any point of its durability state, because there is no way I am gonna use a pick with less than 75% efficiency.

Of course. The idea that metal from tools should be recoverable was the original point of my suggestion. After all, when a stick or rock breaks, it makes sense that it's no longer useful, but metal can always be melted down to make something new.

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8 hours ago, ShinobiG said:

So a blacksmith with a low smithing skill will create a tool that starts at a lower durability? Or are you saying that a smith's skill just shouldn't figure into it? Both are interesting propositions.

Of course. The idea that metal from tools should be recoverable was the original point of my suggestion. After all, when a stick or rock breaks, it makes sense that it's no longer useful, but metal can always be melted down to make something new.

First of all, yes, we will be able to melt the item at any durability.

Better if I rewrite my idea in a new post. Maybe this afternoon.

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This idea is a good idea, the ability to recover small amounts of metal would be nice. A good example of how this would work is: let us say i just make a new suit of iron armor, it would be nice to melt down the old lower tier metal armor to make other stuff such as new tools or just to save the resources.

And just to expound upon this thought a tool or metal armor piece should give more metal the higher the durability is.

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1 hour ago, TheUnknownSpecimen said:

And just to expound upon this thought a tool or metal armor piece should give more metal the higher the durability is.

I'm pretty sure they don't allow tools and armor to be remelted because then you could just re-melt and re-make the items over and over to pump up your skill.  This would be especially attractive with armor, since it requires so much metal.  Now if the loss started at 50% of the metal gone for an unused armor piece, and went up from there, that would make it much less attractive to abuse.

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50% gone is a vast improvement on 100% gone :)

But yes, this does irk me a little.  Probably one of the main reasons I don't tend to make much metal armour.

<devil's advocate>
You can recycle your old anvils; why not the armour?  If you want to spend hours and hours making and melting down armour then I for one have no problems.  If you end up 'pumping up your skill' then that's also reasonable - you've invested the time and consumables (charcoal/coal) into it.
</devil's advcate>

I think it's reasonable in game balance terms to say that when a tool is dead it's dead - even though in practise you could probably get some metal back from it.

 

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17 hours ago, Darmo said:

I'm pretty sure they don't allow tools and armor to be remelted because then you could just re-melt and re-make the items over and over to pump up your skill.  This would be especially attractive with armor, since it requires so much metal.  Now if the loss started at 50% of the metal gone for an unused armor piece, and went up from there, that would make it much less attractive to abuse.

A valid point.

Personally, I think loss should be changeable in the config files. From 100% for people who don't see it as overpowered at all, to 0% for people who think the whole idea is stupid. After all, the amount of ore provided by each ore quality/size was configurable in the original. Servers and players could set it to what they thought was reasonable, instead of having to go by what other people thought. I know I always turned it up, and I'm sure there were other people who always turned it down.

16 hours ago, ChunkHunter said:

50% gone is a vast improvement on 100% gone :)

But yes, this does irk me a little.  Probably one of the main reasons I don't tend to make much metal armour.

<devil's advocate>
You can recycle your old anvils; why not the armour?  If you want to spend hours and hours making and melting down armour then I for one have no problems.  If you end up 'pumping up your skill' then that's also reasonable - you've invested the time and consumables (charcoal/coal) into it.
</devil's advcate>

I think it's reasonable in game balance terms to say that when a tool is dead it's dead - even though in practise you could probably get some metal back from it.

 

I'm sorry, I'm not really that great at communicating; were you agreeing or disagreeing with me? Because normally when people play devil's advocate, they refute the argument they made afterwards.

Sorry again, I apologize if I just missed something.

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My devil's advocate bit is more aimed at the arbitrary decision the devs have made about not recycling armour.  Don't get me wrong, they're perfectly at liberty to do this - it's their game after all...

I'm suggesting that there is no real difference to recycling armour compared to recycling anvils.  You had to spend time and resources to make the anvil ingots, in much the same way as you spend time and resources on making armour.
Armour and anvils take an awful lot of time, effort and resources to make compared to metal tool heads.  I'm not talking about armour that has 'broken'
Effectively 'losing' the metal when you replace your (damaged) armour irks me.  You have a pretty armour statue in your home that you ca't do anything with but look at.

 

I guess I'm disagreeing with you about the way things 'vanish' when they've been damaged beyond repair, purely from a game balace point of view.  I agree that IRL the metal would stil be there, but the usefulness of the tool or armour wuould become significantly reduced over time - your saw would become really blunt, your armour is so bent (or torn if chain) that it is either *really* uncomfortable to wear and thus hampers your fighting ability, or is just no longer effective.  From a game balance point of view, this is put against the item 'breaking'.

 

I rarely make metal armour - I think the only armour I've made in alll my time in playing TFC was a full suit of Red Steel armour and that took me about a month real time after I had gathered all the raw materials (to start fabricating the red steel ingots) before it was completed.

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Anvils don't increase your skills significantly.  Maybe welding double ingots increases general smithing?  I don't know.  The amount of anvil double ingots you'd make across the tech tree, I'd say it's insignificant compared to the amount of welding for bloomeries, blast furnaces, and yes, armor.    Armor on the other hand, has a skill specifically for it, and it's combat gear.  It's true that in TFC1 armor beyond bronze, and certainly steel, is kind of a bit superfluous outside of a pvp context.  But from what we've seen of TFC2 so far, armor and weapons will play very, very central roles, even in solo gameplay.  I think the no-melting decision is justified.  I certainly wouldn't call it arbitrary.  They saw an avenue for abuse and they addressed it.

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Again, it could be configurable.

Anyone who didn't like it could turn it off. They could even make it default to a disabled state. There's no benefit to saying people can't play a certain way because other people don't think you should play that way. Even if it could be abused on servers, it could just be turned off.

Also, the changes to metal only make me want this feature more. If they decide ores should be procedurally generated (as has been discussed), then that would likely make the supplies of certain ores relatively limited. Personally, I know I'd at least like some way to recover used metal.

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On 7/3/2016 at 11:26 PM, ShinobiG said:

 If they decide ores should be procedurally generated (as has been discussed), then that would likely make the supplies of certain ores relatively limited.

I'm curious how you draw that conclusion.  There's been nothing said about making procedural metals limited, iirc.    As for a config, it's not just that easy.  If you're going to allow scrap metal you have to make graphics for the scrap, you have to use item ids - TONS of item ids, and code it all.  And for what?  In TFC1 there is WAY more metal than you'll ever use.  It's everywhere if you're willing to look.  We don't know exactly how TFC2 is going to go in terms of quantities, but personally everything I've seen so far suggests there will still be tons, and nothing I've seen suggests there will be limited supplies.  I mean, the game is called Minecraft.  Is it unreasonable to expect the player to do some mining?

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You make some very valid points. In retrospect, that conclusion of mine was drawn from several assumptions, and was logically flawed.

So, rather than floundering around like an idiot trying to continue and prove myself right, I will admit defeat and go out with dignity.

However, I still would like the feature. Perhaps someone could mod it in later? Or some similar feature that serves the same purpose?

Either way, I appreciate the chance to have a calm and rational discussion on the internet. That isn't an opportunity I get often, and I really do love to argue. You have my respect, and I hope to disagree with you again in the future.

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20 hours ago, Darmo said:

In TFC1 there is WAY more metal than you'll ever use.  It's everywhere if you're willing to look.

I'm inclined to disagree with this statement - but only in specifics.  There may well be "way more metal than you'll ever use" in general, but how often do you hear people on the forums bleating about not being able to find a particular metal that you can only find in one or two stone types, and those stone types simply aren't in evidence within thousands of blocks from their chosen domicile?  This also goes for paticular minerals, without which you will finsd it very difficult to progress up the limited tech tree.

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That true Chunk, silver garnierite, and graphite can be rare commodities.  But I think they're intended to be that way, and the notion of recycling them would kind of defeat that mechanic a bit.  Unless crucibles and fire bricks wear out in TFC2 (not a bad idea actually) graphite wouldn't even apply, since it's not a tool metal - the things you make with it don't wear out. 

Silver and garnierite, the thing about them is in their final forms - black steel and up - they're alloys (well, in TFC1 anyway).  So the scraps would be mostly composed of much more common metals.  Of the 200 unit of metal needed to produce 1 ingot of black steel, around 2.5 are silver, and 15-25 (avg 20) are nickel.  a 50% return would net 1.25 units of silver, which is insignificant, and around 10 of nickel.  Again, not that much.  

Colored metals aren't much better - of the 350 units required for each ingot, around 38 are nickel, and 4-10 are silver.  So again, returns are probably very low, depending on how the recycling works.  It's all complicated by the 'disappearing' weld-on ingots in black and colored steels.  I'm kind of hoping that's not a thing in TFC2, personally. 

All that said, an average size vein of silver or nickel, even if poor, is probably going to supply the player all they probably will need.  There are cases where you get unlucky and the vein is extremely diffuse, or is right at a boundary and most of it got cut off by another layer.  But those are rare cases, in my experience.  In the vast majority of cases, I think you find one vein, and you're set as far as reaching top tech.  If you're a good miner that is.   Also, if you find the metal on a surface layer, you'll find more (unless you found just a tiny corner of the layer, and most of it is under ocean).  Even mid-layer is going to show in a few spots.   Now if one wants to have 1000 blue steel lamps, or an army of red-steel clad armor dummies, ala the terra-cotta army, well, that's another story.  But recycling won't help in that case anyway.

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Totally agree Darmo.

In my experience even in multiplayer with a good size town ( we once had a town with 12 players ) Is very rare to need to look for more than one vein of a particular ore. Exceptions for Copper and Iron. Again only in the case of big towns.

In single player one mine for each ore will supply all the metal the player will need to advance to red/blue still.

This is one of the topics where I used to have an opinion but changed my mind as I realized how the game works.

When I first started playing TFC it used to bother me that the tools would just go puff when they reached the end of their durability. It was just not realistic.

Then I started to learn a bit about Java and coding. Not enough to make a mod but enough to appreciate how much work is involved in making one.

So for starters to change this feature the Dev's would need to create a new item for every single different  tool and weapon we have in the mod.

One item for the broken copper sword and one item for the broken blue still chisel. 

Than we need a feature to allow the remelting of that broken item. For balance it would give only half the metal used on the original tool.

I just do not believe is worth the time of the Dev's to create such a feature.

I have no idea how people dealt with such things in the medieval times or before that. Now a days if my hammer breaks I just go and get another one.

Did people really used to bring broken tools to the town smith to remelt then? Or would they just toss it away and buy another one?

I know we have junk yards for scrap metal in real life. But they work in a industrial scale. I think is outside of the time period for TFC. 

Just think about. You are out exploring or mining. One of your tools breaks. Are you really going to waste one of your inventory slots to bring that tool back home?

My inventory slots are more precious than half an ingot of material.

If the intention and argument is just to make the mod more realistic, I would ask the Dev's instead to code plant fibers to tie the stone tools to their handles. 

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7 hours ago, TonyLiberatto said:

I have no idea how people dealt with such things in the medieval times or before that. Now a days if my hammer breaks I just go and get another one.

Did people really used to bring broken tools to the town smith to remelt then? Or would they just toss it away and buy another one?

I know we have junk yards for scrap metal in real life. But they work in a industrial scale. I think is outside of the time period for TFC. 

As far as game mechanics go, I'm not going to debate any more. (I'll admit it isn't reasonable to expect this feature, but it's still one I'd personally like to see. Since I've always disliked unnecessary waste on a very personal level.)

But if you really think medieval people would just discard metal tools, I'd have to say you know very little about what medieval life was like. Almost their entire culture was built around scarcity and the prevention of waste. Not to mention how valuable metal was.

I mean, let's walk through the process of obtaining a metal sword:

First, people would have to find an ore vein. Sure, these ore veins would last a while, but finding them was extraordinarily difficult with medieval technology. As well as dangerous, considering the local wildlife and how slow travel was at the time. In summary, getting your hands on a mine was quite difficult. Really, TFC has made it a c**p-ton easier than real life.

Secondly, the ore needed to be extracted. A very dangerous job that still causes relatively frequent casualties even with access to modern technology and techniques.

Third, the ore needs to be smelted, and blacksmiths were not cheap. Smiths were artisans, about as close as you could get to upper class in the medieval era without being of noble birth. (Like a knight or something.) Especially since (correct me if I'm wrong) merchants hadn't even begun to establish themselves as next to royalty. This also meant that there wasn't very many of them.

Just for good measure, I decided to look up exactly how much a medieval sword would cost. Specifically, in the early 15th century. According to the only information I could find regarding 15th century sword prices (I'll admit I only checked about a dozen links, but all of the other sources I found were for different time periods) they were about a pound. Now, although the site did explain how much a pound was worth at the time,  it didn't account for daily living expenses. (A modern day human who made 3,500$ a month wouldn't be able to afford a 7,000$ TV every two months.) So, I decided to run a quick check to see how much that would be equivalent to in modern currency. The lowest estimate I got was 750 pounds, or 964.95 USD. And that's for an average sword. The price only goes up from there.

Sources: Price of Sword   Modern Value

TL;DR? Would you chuck a hunk of metal worth almost 1k$? (Or more?)

Anyway, I will concede that it might not be effective game play wise, but as far as realism goes: Nobody is chucking away perfectly good tools. (Or food, for that matter. People starved to death a lot back then. Well, they still do, but it was even worse back then. Food was pretty scarce.)

 

Edited by ShinobiG
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I do understand code, I have coded in C# and I would like to point out that rather than making broken tools melt able how about instead they go poof they are gone. 

Instead let us look at this idea my copper tool isn't dead yet and I just made this shiny new iron tool (I don't bother making bronze tools). Why couldn't I melt down the last of that copper and keep it. The code doesn't need a new texture it simply needs to look at the durability and through a chosen function determine how much copper I would get back, and you don't get the stick back.

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