I don't spend a lot of time on the forums, so I have no idea if this has been said a million times or never. That said, I'm sure many are prepared with flamethrower in hand, ready to torch down this idea before it can bloom, but what the hell, here I go anyway...
So, I had an idea while reading "Ask Cryptic" today, regarding crafting. Honestly, it may not even be originally "my" idea, since Armsman at the very least touched on it. (Gotta give credit where credit is due) Here was the Q and A responsible for spawning the idea:
"Q: Armsman: With Memory Alpha starting to be revamped; will there EVER be a point where we can tweak our existing gear with bonuses we'd like?
A: Yes! There is some crafting tech that another team created which we are hoping to take advantage of in a future update which will allow us to rework crafting to be similar to what you describe."
Okay, so, because weapons specifically all do the same damage at a certain tier (all Mark X weapons have a set DPS value), what if crafting were to take the base values of the weapon and add components to them? We could craft the basic weapon which does X dps with the base attack; we could choose if that attack were a beam or a bolt, or multiple bolts or whatever "feel" we desire. The base weapon itself could be crafted to have 1, 2 or 3 extra "powers" (and thus be uncommon, rare or very rare); the more extra powers, the more items/components needed to craft it with, similar to what it is now, but instead being a blank slate, where we get to choose the extra "powers" assigned to them.
We could then craft the extra components to it; for an uncommon item, we get to add one other "bonus" to the weapon, such as +2% critical hit or whatever. Rare gets two, and very rare gets three. Each of these powers would also have to be crafted, requiring their own set of components.
Lastly, we could devise the final component, the "special" attack, which is either expose or exploit; the special attack we choose would have to conform to current models; the more damage and/or area of effect, the slower the recharge time is, but each weapon would have its own unique feel to it by the time construction of the device is complete.
This would make crafting (to me) feel as though you are creating a more unique item; the current model of crafting is fine as it stands, but there should be something after it, so that you can create your own, truly unique items. In a fashion similar to weapons, all other gear in the game could also be fashioned, by adding components to one another.
I for one would love to create an impulse drive module which has the same capabilities of the +5 power units to shields, weapons and engines, but at a level XII level, you know? I'd go through the collection process to make that happen, and I imagine others would too.
Anyway, idea off, and for those of you who hate this idea, flame on!