One major problem I've noticed, at least in AM, is that the Smithing change has resulted in us losing all of our active smiths. None of the Knights who had learned Smithing to get access to Fullplate have bothered to relearn Smithing now. And why should they? There's no benefit to them for it. Concoctions can be worthwhile because it sells items that get purchased in bulk and consumed fairly rapidly. Toxins cost nothing but time to create, so they can turn dead/chatting time into gold, albeit slowly. Smithing, though? Smithing is awful to learn.
- Weapon standardization has lowered the profit margin on weapons substantially because you can't charge premium prices for premium items anymore.
- Smithed items still have a fairly long turnaround, since people only replace them about once every two months. Over the course of a year Bob the Outrider is going to buy 6 spears, 6 shields, and 6 suits of chainmail These are not the kinds of sales numbers that encourage people to drop 300cr on a tradeskill; Antioch is the largest city and it might have the population to support one Smith, since people with artifact weapons are non-customers.
- The actual smithing process itself is utterly miserable and it requires that you code a system to do any kind of bulk smithing without hating yourself. I mean, goddamn, the steps are something like... "put material one in forge, put material two in forge, put material 3 in forge, smith for item, smith, get item, quench". If you can't code a system and try to do this manually you will absolutely hate it.
- Armor smithing is still absolutely miserable; getting usable armour means you're going to get to spend a few hundred thousand gold on comms and spend half an hour playing smithing roulette. This makes stocking your shop with armor an exercise in frustration. If you just bang out 5 suits of scalemail, you're probably selling your customers shitty scalemail. This means that knowledgeable people aren't going to buy from you and the people who do buy from you are going to have a worse playing experience because they unwittingly bought cardboard armor, not to mention the fact that you're quite possibly selling your teammates garbage and thusly hurting your chances to win fights.
The end result here is that Smithing is still useless but there's even less incentive to learn it since fullplate isn't dependent on it. The only reason to learn Smithing is because SOMEBODY in your circle has to learn it and if you're lucky it's not going to be you; the unlucky bastard that gets stuck with it ends up dropping $100 worth of credits so that you can make no gold supplying mandatory supplies to your city.
"On the battlefield I am a god. I love war. The steel, the smell, the corpses. I wish there were more. On the first day I drove the Northmen back alone at the ford. Alone! On the second I carried the bridge! Me! Yesterday I climbed the Heroes! I love war! I… I wish it wasn’t over."