The only real reason to ever buy or upgrade your equipment in Two Worlds II is if an item looks cooler than what you’ve got on now. By putting points into the Crafting skill tree, you can gradually improve your weapons and armor to the point where they’re roughly equivalent with the best gear in the game.
At the same time, you can blend monster parts, plants, and other assorted items found throughout the game world into a variety of potions, and with points in Alchemy, they’ll be more potent and last longer than anything you can find in a store. Self-sufficiency is very much the name of the game here.
To Craft you will need other peoples stuff, so when ya kill em take what they have.
You can break down weapons, shields, quivers, and armor for its raw ingredients. A disassembled item is reduced to a small quantity of wood, steel, iron, fabric, leather, chainmail, or essence. These ingredients are considered weightless and can stack up to 999 in a given inventory slot.
One of your primary sources of income, admittedly, is going to be selling dead guys’ weapons to the nearest shopkeeper. It’s a good idea to strike a happy balance between selling off and disassembling whatever loot you happen across.
You can also count on always having a lot more wood, steel, and iron than leather, fabric, or chainmail. For whatever reason, the only opponents who drop armor upon their defeat are the guards in the castle in the prologue. The rest of the time, you’ll be looting corpses for weapons, shields, and occasionally quivers of arrows.
This makes scrounging in locked chests, cabinets, and drawers more important, as it’s your primary source of materials for upgrading your armor.
With enough materials and points in the relevant crafting skills, you can upgrade your gear. An upgrade adds a small number of points in the weapon or armor’s relevant statistics, and subsequent upgrades further increase those stats and add more slots for crystals.
The first few upgrades to any item are essentially “free”; they cost a negligible amount of materials and should be done immediately to any weapon that you plan to be using for the next while. After the sixth upgrade or so, the cost in materials becomes significant, and even if you have a huge stock in reserve, you can run out fairly easily. Iron in particular goes from omnipresent to scarce as you get towards the upper limits of crafting.
Given the relative scarcity of chainmail, leather, and fabric, you should be a little more careful with armor. In practice, you should never have to buy a weapon upgrade from a shopkeeper, since your existing gear should be heavily reinforced and you’ve just gotten back from mowing down every armed humanoid in a three-mile radius, but it’s more feasible to upgrade armor at a vendor than to upgrade it yourself.
Many quest rewards or boss drops offer a percentage-based increase to a given attribute when equipped, such as the Dragon Boots or Sandohar’s Wrath. This cannot be transferred to other items via crystals or crafting, and is gone forever if you disassemble the item in question. This bonus also stacks with attribute-boosting potions.
You can find crystals all over the world. Each one comes with a small bonus to attributes, skills, or resistances, which it’ll convey to you if you plug the crystal into a slot in a piece of your armor. This is the only thing amulets and most rings are good for.
Attribute crystals give a passive bonus to a certain attribute, damage crystals make weapons glow and inflict elemental bonus damage, skill crystals give a bonus to a given skill, and resistance crystals protect you against specific kinds of elemental attack.
What’s interesting is that any skill or attribute in the game can be augmented by a crystal, and not simply the ones that are relevant to combat or exploration. It’s possible to assemble a full set of crystals that provide bonus ranks to various crafting skills, such as Fusion or Armor Reinforcement. That in turn lets you put together a new outfit that specifically augments your crafting, which will save you a few skill points that you can put into your combat ability.
To install a crystal, you must have enough points in the Fusion skill to work with a crystal of its level, which is indicated by the number next to the star in the crystal’s information panel. If a high-level crystal is already installed in a piece of gear when you pick it up, you’re free to use the gear and get the benefit, but you can’t pull the crystal out and stick it in something else.
Crystals don’t weigh anything, so you can easily carry dozens of them and reconfigure your gear whenever you see the need. Disassembling an item with crystals in it frees up the crystals and automatically deposits them in your inventory.
As your Fusion skill increases, you can take low-level crystals with the same benefit (i.e. two Strength +1 crystals; two Frost Dmg +25 crystals) and turn them into a single crystal with a cumulative score. The game is very bad about telling you exactly how this is done. If you’ve got the materials and the necessary skills to fuse two crystals together, a hammer/anvil icon will appear above it in the inventory screen, and you can fuse them by simply pushing a button.
Absolutely everything you kill in Two Worlds II except for other human beings can be harvested for useful ingredients, and you can find alchemically useful plants growing just about anywhere. Once you collect the Alchemy skillbook, those ingredients can be brewed into potions in the Alchemy tab in your inventory. Ingredients do not count against your weight limit.
You can brew every potion in the game with as little as one point in Alchemy, but successive ranks in the skill allow you to create potions with significantly longer durations or improved effects. You also can’t do much of anything without winding up with a giant stack of potion ingredients cluttering up your inventory, so there’s no reason not to brew up as many potions as possible and use them at every opportunity.
Each potion ingredient you find is labeled with its potential effect. If you mix that item with another one that increases potion durations, such as aconite or a baboon’s tongue, you’ll receive a potion that provides exactly that effect. There are other items that provide a duration increase, but aconite is all over the Savannah like a weed and you’ll be killing baboons by the dozen early on. Many of your potions will be composed of one part aconite to one part deliberate monkey slaughter.
Here are some potions, what it takes to make, and what it does.
Mummy Brain and Varn’s Mutated Heart
This potion automatically brings you back to life with a set value of your maximum health if you die during the potion’s duration. Against enemies that can kill you instantly if they get a lucky combo, such as Reapers or Myrmidons, this provides a very useful buffer.
Large Healing Potion
Mutated Varn Heart and Tainted Heart / Hyena Heart / Warthog Fang
In Two Worlds II, you kill two dozen Varns just walking across the street. You will have hundreds of their hearts without trying by the end of Chapter I. Hyena Hearts are almost as easy to come by, particularly when you’re in the wilderness around Hatmandor, and you should have quite the backlog of Tainted Hearts by the time you reach the Tower of Fangs. Blend these up to make a powerful healing potion, which you’ll be drinking by the case by the time you hit Chapter II.
Drakonai Eye and Baboon’s Tongue / Aconite
This throws up a “mana shield,” forcing attacks against you to drain mana instead of health. Combine it with a potion of willpower for an extra buffer. It’s obviously not very useful if you’re a primary spellcaster, but warriors and rangers who aren’t really using their mana will get some mileage out of this.
Scapulari Brain and Tainted Heart
There’s a quest in Hatmandor, “Palm Grove,” that sends you to clean a bunch of Scapulari out of a basement north of Bayan. There’s a similar quest, “Brain Collage,” in New Ashos. While Scapulari are a little rare outside of those quests, you should get enough brains from them to do as much waterwalking as you need.