Thursday, August 16, 2012

Uncovering Disciplines: Jeweler

Considering the topics covered in the previous post, moving straight to talk about the jeweler discipline might seem like an awkward choice. At first covering the crafting station's interface and explaining the discovery system sounded like the most logical topic for this post, but then again being able to use an already explained discipline as an example would made things more comprehensible. That is why this post explains what being a jeweler is all about, and only the next post will cover the features of the crafting stations and explain the discovery process.

A jeweler crafts accessories which are pieces of equipment usable by all professions. There are equipment slots in the Hero panel for each type of accessory: two slots for rings, two for earrings and one for a necklace. In addition to the accessory type of equipment, a jeweler also crafts jewels which are upgrade components for accessories with an upgrade slot, but which can also be used for crafting accessories.

A jeweler uses different types of metals and gemstones as raw materials. Metals are obtained by mining mineral veins and by salvaging weapons and armor that are made of metal. Gemstones are frequently obtained when mining mineral veins and logging trees. They can also sometimes be found when looting an enemy's corpse. In addition, pearls can be found inside of clams, which are marked on the map as plant nodes. Higher tier gemstones can also be transmogrified by the jeweler. Transmogrification is explained in greater detail later in this post.

The crafting process happens at the jeweler specific crafting stations, which are marked on the map with the purple gem icon seen on the top of this post. Crafting jewelry mostly follows a clear pattern. A piece of jewelry consists of a gem, a setting for attaching the gem, and the base component: chain for necklaces, band for rings and hook for earrings. These are the vital components for crafting the different types of accessories.

There is only one kind of each type of component per material tier, even though there are several different kinds of components in real life. There are recipes which clearly indicate that one is crafting a stud earring, such as Amber Copper Stud, but still the component which pierces the ear is called a hook. There is also many different kinds of settings for jewelry in real life, but only one type of setting for each material tier in Guild Wars 2.

A photo of a silver ring and a stud earring, as well as an earring with a hook. From the
images you can notice how there exists very different kinds of settings in the real world.

In addition to rings, necklaces and earrings, a jeweler crafts jewels. There is one more component which was not mentioned earlier: filigree. A filigree is a very delicate decoration, made of extremely thin threads of metal. When complete, the design of a filigree is similar to lace. Jewels are made by decorating a gemstone with a filigree. Jewels can be used for upgrading accessory type of equipment. While a raw gemstone can be used as an upgrade for any kind of piece of equipment, a jewel can only be used for upgrading accessories, but in compensation has a higher amount of attribute points than a raw gemstone.

Jewels can also be used for crafting master versions of jewelry. There exists two versions of jewelry recipes: normal and master. Master versions of jewelry have a slightly higher amount of attribute points than their normal versions and are green quality items instead of blue. While a normal version is crafted using a raw gemstone, a master version is crafted using a jewel made of the same kind of gemstone and a filigree. The recipes are called exactly the same apart from the note (Master) at the end of the name of the master version. The item names are slightly different.

Normal version of Garnet Stud on the left and its master version on the right.

In addition to using gemstones as components for accessories and jewels, jewelers can also transmogrify lower tier gemstones into one tier higher gemstones. There are total of six different tiers of gemstones. Transmogrifying a gemstone requires 1-2 different kinds gemstones of the previous tier and one pile of dust which type depends on the tier level. There are some exceptions to the rule though: For example a second tier gemstone called Sunstone Nugget requires one lower level gemstone, a pile of dust and a Copper Doubloon.

The attributes of a crafted item depend on what kind of an activator component was used for making it. Inscriptions are activator components for weapons, and insignias are activator components for armor. For jewelers the activator components are the different kinds of gemstones and hence the attributes of an accessory or a jewel depend on the gemstone used. The lowest tier gemstones have only one type of attribute: Amber increases Condition damage, Garnet increases Power, Malachite increases Toughness, Pearl increases Healing, Tiger's Eye increases Precision and Turquoise increases Vitality. The higher tier gemstones have 2-3 different attributes. Most of the time when one transmogrifies gemstones, the transmogrified gemstone will have the same attribute types as the materials used for the transmogrification.

Jeweler is a good choice of a discipline for any profession, because every type of character can benefit from the products. Also, for the vast majority of time, gemstones are only used by the jeweler discipline so one does not need to worry about saving those materials for another discipline. The products made by a jeweler will most likely sell well in the Trading Post because accessories are only rarely given as rewards or found as loot, and a jeweler is the only source of enhanced upgrade components for accessories.