The Ultimate Resource FAQ (part 1)
by Wuu Sarin, of Shadowfire
Within this FAQ I refer often to SWG Craft- this is a 3rd party website at www.swgcraft.com. It is NOT affiliated with Sony or SOE in any way.
I wrote most of this myself, but some of these questions are collated from other threads. The work and effort is entirely mine, so I'd appreciate lots of suggestions/corrections, and not so much plagiarism. This guide is for the people, thanks!
If the font size is too small/large, put your mouse over the text, hold Control and roll your mouse wheel. Or in IE, use View > Text Size.
This is designed for people new to resources. I expect you've played for a day or two, and know basic command use. Although a lot of the info is useful for Artisans, ANYONE can benefit from harvester use, so this goes in Game Guides.
** What, really, are resources? What the heck is an "Akade Carbonite Steel"?
Resources are the materials necessary for crafters to create items. You need bone and hide to make camp, metal to make a sword, and so on.
Resources are organized as a tree; all resources, for example, are categorized into either organic, inorganic, or power. Inorganic resources are further classified into mineral, chemical, gas and water. Mineral resources are further classified, so on, down to a type of material, such as steel, or iron, or carbonate ore.
Furthermore, each type of material comes in specific classes. Iron, for example: there's Kammris Iron, Axidite Iron, Doonium Iron, Plumbum Iron, Dolovite Iron, Bronzium Iron, Colat Iron, and Polonium Iron. These classes are set, and you will not see new classes emerge.
Furthermore, just as we consider Alpine water to be different from stream-gathered freshwater, each class of material comes in specific, NAMED instances. Today, there might exist a Carbonite Steel called "Akade" on Corellia. Tomorrow you might discover a new kind of Carbonite Steel available on Naboo called "Loka" or such. This is the most specific it will get- there are no sub-classes of Akade steel, ALL Akade steel is identical.
Steel is classified as Inorganic > Mineral > Metal > Ferrous > Steel. As such, it can be used to make any item that requires any of the above. Generic, simple items might only require, for example, 10 units of "Inorganic." A small stimpack, for example, only requires Inorganic; any kind of Inorganic will do. High-end items will require specific resources, down to a type of material. Power Hammers, for example, not only require Iron, but Kammris Iron. With me so far?
So the classification of ANY resource goes like this:
Type (such as Inorganic) > sub-type (such as mineral) > ... > sub-type > class (such as Carbonite Steel) > Specific resource (such as "Akade"). The name is unique and random, so it completely identifies the resource. You can say Akade, and every unit of Akade will be exactly identical, even Akade from different planets.
Take a look at this visual "tree" to get a visual understanding:
** How are resources collected? What are harvesters?
Different resources are collected different ways.
The most different are the animal resources- bone, hide, and meat. These can only be collected from killed animals, and only by Scouts (and their Ranger brothers). Milk can be gathered from certain live animals by Scouts/Rangers. Seafood is collected manually, with a harvesting tool. Eggs are collected from lairs, also manually. These are all much more difficult to gather in LARGE quantities, so they tend to be more expensive.
All other types of resources are collected either manually by an Artisan, or by anyone using a harvester of that type of resource.
To collect manually, you must have Novice Artisan skill, which grants you the command /sample and /survey.
There are several different kinds of resource harvesters: mineral, chemical, gas, water, floral, solar, wind and radioactive.
Gas, water, solar, wind harvesters each collect only their namesakes. A gas harvester only collects gas (but are capable of collecting ANY type of gas). A water harvester collects water vapor, but any kind of water. Solar and wind harvesters collect solar and wind power. A radioactive harvester collects radioactive power.
Mineral, chemical, and floral harvesters collect the rest. Obviously a mineral harvester can collect any kind of mineral (that's not gas or water). Floral harvesters collect all floral resources.
Note that since radioactive is considered a mineral, mineral harvesters can also collect that.
In addition, many of the harvesters come in different sizes. Wind, solar, and radioactive harvesters come in one size only- the radioactive harvester is misleadingly called a "fusion generator." The others come in 3 sizes: personal, medium, and heavy.
Naturally, the larger size harvesters collect more than smaller sizes.
** How do I manually collect resources? Why would I want to?
You must be a Novice Artisan at least.
The basic concept is this. Resources are randomly spread throughout the land in concentrations. You have to find a spot with a high concentration of a resource by using your surveying skill. Then you use your sampling skill to try to get a few units of the resource, at the cost of some HAM. By sampling over and over, you can slowly collect resources.
First, you'll need a surveying device of the appropriate kind; a mineral survey device if you want steel for our example. Buy one, or construct one since you're an Artisan. Dismount any vehicles or mounts. Click it (the first time you use it, you will have to choose a range- as you gain more Surveying skill, you can see a larger range). You will be presented with all the mineral resources on this planet, down to each specific named instance.
Select a resource you want, and click Survey or enter /survey. You will start searching, and the nearby land will be displayed on the Surveying screen, with you in the center. An overlapping matrix of concentrations of that resource will be overlaid on top of the land, so you can see, within your limited range of survey, where the highest concentration is. In addition, a waypoint will be set to that point, named "Resource Survey".
Once you've done the survey, head towards the highest concentration waypoint, and survey again. Repeat until you get to the "peak"- this may be very close or really far.
You want to reach the highest concentration before you try to start collecting, because it will affect both how easy it is for you to collect samples, and how MUCH sample you get each time.
Once you're there, click the Get Sample button, or enter /sample. You will kneel and collect some. (If you get an error, stand still a few seconds and try again- you cannot sample while running.)
Manually sampling is very slow, it uses up your HAM, and you have a chance of failing to find some. on the other hand, it's fairly simple if you just need a few units, it's free, and it is the only way to gain Surveying XP, which you'll need to gain Survey skill.
Also, when you're manually sampling, occasionally you'll see a popup box giving you a chance to find an extra rich lode or high concentration. These are one-time, bonus events designed to encourage manual sampling and discourage AFK sampling.
Note also that sampling radioactive is very painful- you have to first confirm your wish to sample, and then if you sample successfully you will take wound damage to your HAM.
** I'm not an Artisan! Can I still gather resources?
Absolutely, though you cannot manually sample. Find an Artisan, and offer to pay for waypoints to high concentrations of the resource you want. Basically, hire someone to survey FOR you. Once they find you a good spot, go there and use your harvesters!
** What is power and how do I get some? Is liquid fuel power?
"Power" or "Energy" refer to certain resources that are used in running harvesters and factories. This includes solar, wind, and radioactive resources. Liquid or Solid Petrochem Fuel "sounds" like power, but they are NOT- they're simply just another kind of resource to collect.
** Okay, how do I set up these harvesters and start collecting automatically?
First, you'll need to acquire an appropriate harvester. Want steel? Get a mineral harvester of any size (starting off, you really really should use a Personal size harvester). Want rice? Get a floral harvester, etc.
Next, go through the above surveying steps until you find that good concentration spot.
Now, click the harvester deed in your inventory and select Use. You will be taken to an overhead view of the local area, and you'll be able to move your cursor around to see where you want to construct the harvester. If your current cursor is over an allowable spot, it will glow green. Else it will glow red. Find a green spot, and click it.
You can right-click to "rotate" the harvester, which may make it fit more easily. You can also move around while im the Placement mode to view if more than one lot is placable before investing the time by simply measuring the area by surface markings, This becomes Vital in cases where You would rather place more than one structure in the same area before you find out the hard way. (Thanks to Qwiqshot.)
You'll come back to the world, the harvester should disappear and begin constructing at the spot you chose. (If not, repeat the above paragraph- lag can cause this.) In a minute or so, the harvester will be completed and you'll get an email.
** Okay, it's set up, now what?
Now you need to provide it with what it needs to run, tell it what you want it to collect, and set it going.
For power (that is, solar/wind/radioactive) harvesters, you need to pay maintenance to make it run. For other resource harvesters, you need both maintenance, as well as power that's either collected or bought from someone.
So click the harvester and select Pay Maintenance, and put in some money. If it's not a power harvester, then you'll need to select Deposit Power and add some power as well. You can click it and select Status to see how much power/maintenance is already in the machine, and how long that will last.
First, dismount if you're on a mount- there's a bug that doesn't let you do certain harvester actions when mounted.
Now, click the harvester and select Operate Machinery. You'll see an operation window come up.
First, you'll have to tell it what to extract- it starts off with nothing. Select "Change Resource" and a list of all the available resources in this spot it can collect will appear. Each resource available is listed with an efficiency- this is simply the concentration of that resource at this spot. Choose a resource you want to collect- the higher efficiency/concentration the more you'll collect.
Now start the harvester. It'll rumble and start moving; wait one minute and it'll have collected some resources. Click the Hopper button to get at the resources; you'll see a list of all the resources it's collected. From there on it's self-explanatory- just remember Empty Harvester and Discard Resource are not to be used- unless you just don't WANT whatever it collected.
That's the basics of resource harvesting.
** What are attributes? What the heck is "Overall Quality" and "Decay Resistance" and etc?
Every resource is "rated" in terms of several attributes, on a scale of 1 to 1000. Ratings of 500-700 is strictly average quality; 900 or more is good quality, and any ratings over 950 can be considered extremely good.
Resource attributes are random, but tend to have patterns you can learn. Copper tends to have high Conductivity. Steel tends to have high Unit Toughness. Beans tend to have high Flavor. So on and so forth.
Not all resourcse have the same kind of attributes. Wood has no Cold Resistance to speak of, and Steel has no Flavor.
Each named instance of a resource is identical. Two units of Akade steel will have identical attributes.
The attributes of a resource are important to the final quality of an item it's made into. Different attributes will affect different qualities of the final item. For example, to make a wind harvester have a large hopper size so it can hold more, the resources used must have high Malleability and Unit Toughness. But to make the wind harvester have a higher rate of extraction requires materials with high Heat Resistance, Shock Resistance and Unit Toughness.
Much of what separates a valuable, expensive resource from a cheap, useless one is these attributes. Pay close attention to this; as you become more experienced at resource collecting you'll learn what's a good number for an attribute for a particular resource
** Does survey skill/harvester size/quality/the phase of the moon affect the quality of resources that I get?
Absolutely NOT. The attributes on any named resource is randomly determined within ranges, when it is FIRST CREATED by the system. Any named resource is EXACTLY identical- one unit of Akade steel is identical to another unit of Akade steel in all its attributes.
Your survey skill only affects a) how far you can "see" with your survey device, b) the chance of your sampling actually GETTING a sample (affected also by resource concentration where you're standing), c) how MUCH your sampling recovers each time (affected also by concentration).
** Does a high Overall Quality/Decay Resistance/whatever mean a better resource?
Asides from the requirements of each specific crafted item, the attributes themselves have no inherent meaning. Resources with low "Decay Resistance" do not rot; high Overall Quality does not mean it's valuable by itself.
The ONLY exception is with power resources (wind/solar/radioactive) and the Potential Energy attribute, so pay close attention.
When used as power, these resources are highly dependent on the PE attribute. Resources with 500 PE is considered normal; a wind/solar/radioactive unit with PE 1000 will function as TWO "normal" units of PE 500.
Units with PE 499 or less are not WORSE; they function just like PE 500. With me so far?
So the following are identical in terms of "power": 100 units of PE 399 wind power, or 100 units of PE 500 solar power, or 50 units of PE 1000 radioactive, or 67 units of another PE 750 radioactive resource. Put them into a mineral harvester and they'll all run the harvester for the same amount of time.
There is a detailed explanation of PE for power, at:
** I put down some wind generators on a spot with 60% wind concentration, but today the 60% has gone down to 30% or is completely gone!! What happened??
Ah, the last thing I haven't told you about is the "resource shift." It's the developer's way of preventing someone from finding a good spot and hogging it forever.
Every resource, given enough time, will eventually shift- either its distribution over the land will change, so that former 60% spot now is only 30%, or vanish completely.
If the resource your harvester is collecting vanishes or "shifts out," your harvester will shut down.
This forces you to check every day or two (or five), to make sure you're still collecting.
Current consensus is that most resource lasts somewhere between 5-15 days, so checking your harvesters every few days is a good idea.
Use SWG Craft's "current resources" to help you find out what's available. You can search by server and planet, and also enter in stats of resources you've found.
** Do I have to pay maintenance and power? What if I don't?
For all harvesters, if you don't pay maintenance and it runs out, the harvester will start to take damage. Once its durability is reduced to ZERO, it is destroyed. To repair a damaged harvester is simple- put more credits into maintenance; it will self-repair.
For non-power harvesters, if you don't pay enough power, when it runs out of power, it will shut down.
** Can I shut harvesters off to conserve power and maintenance?
If you shut a harvester off, it will no longer consume power. It WILL continue to use maintenance.
Message Edited by wooshoofoo on 04-22-2004 07:08 PM
Message Edited by wooshoofoo on 04-22-2004 07:13 PM
Message Edited by wooshoofoo on 04-22-2004 07:17 PM