Here are my thoughts on how to introduce research kits (and some other thoughts about BPs and crafting) without upsetting the server balance too terribly. Assume every statement below is qualified with ‘IMO’.
First, research kits should be somewhat rare. Research kits should only be useable at a workbench as in legacy. Research kits should not be researchable or craftable (I assume the shift-drag ability from legacy was a developer tool that was just left in).
To avoid adding a new ‘quality’ mechanism, all crafted items should have some small amount (random, 1-15%?) of durability already ‘used up’. Only allow ‘perfect’ items to be researched, which means that only items that are looted from barrels or crates can be researched, and only if they haven’t been used prior to being researched. Have the researched item either lose some amount of durability (or better yet, be consumed entirely) so that once researched, an item can’t be researched again.
Find an AK in that airdrop? Don’t use it and degrade it on the way home if you want to research it.
Also, with the introduction of the workbench, only allow blueprints to be used at the workbench. Find an AK BP in rad town? You still have to get home with it before you can use it. Even if people build workbenches near rad towns, this will cut down on the ‘suicide’ mission rad town looting. With the introduction of researching, blueprints could be even more rare, that special item that automatically gives you the ability to craft an item without having to find one to research. Maybe very special items have no BP’s and must be researched to be able to be crafted?
I think it’d also be interesting if there were ‘craft component only’ items, items that serve no other purpose but to be used in crafting other items. Maybe firearms all need a somewhat rare firing pin to be crafted. You can collect them when you find them in the hopes of eventually being able to craft guns later, but they are useless until you can. Maybe bucket helms need a ‘metal screen’ component. These items might be treated like currency on servers because of their value to people who can craft.
Just some thoughts I had in response to some discussions about BP’s in other threads.