How in the world did you ever figure this stuff out? Where you part of the original Dev team that made this?
By the time ryzom was born I've been very busy learning for all these tests and lectures at school. Internet was still expensive and mmos some super advanced technology from the future. However, I sunk many hours into the game during the beta and I regret nothing ;) For the development, I was never involved. I had my private projects, but nothing officially affiliated with Ryzom.
(Ciel and Arcueid in the beta, good times)
As for the formulas and madness associated with them, I was a young homin and fascinated by the craft system and numbers. I wasn't the smartest homin around, nor had I even started studying, but I set my personal ingame goal to fully understand crafting and the magic behind it.
I started to work on a program today known as KipeeCraft back in 2006, to support my analysis. It was very crude and spit out totally wrong numbers, but it could combine materials and provide me with a learning platform! The first step, to add the numbers mathematically correct for each stat, was relatively easy - if you had the correct raw material stats... Back then we had some online material databases, but mostly incomplete or inconcistent.
So I started another sideproject and gathered raw material stats myself and built my own little database. Maybe those differences could explain the craft system madness going on? I used screenshots of the materials and wrote a small utility to count the pixel values for the bars.
(Screenshot of my stat extractor in progress)
During the same time I started to work on a public material database called RZDB which later became arcDB. It is still around today in one form or another and I added many interesting online tools to it. This web project was going along with the knowledge and understanding I had of the craft system at the time.
I worked together with many many homins over the years and added some of the tools into KipeeCraft aswell, but the formulas were still a secret to me. The +10 Bonus was relatively easy to understand, it was more difficult to find the correct conditioins to trigger the Bonus. Some constants and deltas can be tracked down with statistics, analysis etc. today, but back then I was a young homin and busy creating stuff which sometimes worked and most of the times didn't. But I never gave up :)
The formulas were pretty much accurate by the end of 2007, way before the game's source code was available to the public. Alot of trial and error, excel sheets and programming went into them. I have to give credit, where credit is due though. I met many homins and I wouldn't be here talking about crafting without them. In no particular order and I probably forgot half of you (sorry!!), I have to give a big thank you to the following awesome players: Wintermute, Loomas, Karu, Kaetemi, Zyeir, Zerotag, Kyerna, Aajolea, Talenthia, Fasinus, Kye, Riveit, Talkirc, Nuzanshi, Sir Cotare, Elvish, Azad, Fyrosfreddy and Zood.
With the release of the game's source code I was of course excited to see the real deal and how it was done by the devs. I had a big smile on my face, the moment I found the crafting code, because I didn't have to change a thing. It was spot on, even up to this day. There were some minor differences in the redistribution of the cut off stats, yes, but the basic principle was absolutely correct.
Today everyone can look the code up, but I think it is even more confusing to learn from it, that's why I decided to write this article. I hope it helps the community to better understand crafting and doesn't reveal too much. On the other hand, after roughly 10 years of unchanged crafting and recipes - what is there left to discover?