The following is the information I have gathered about skinning in as much detail as I can make a guess at. Much of it is speculation, bits and pieces of it are garnered from the rare tidbits that GMs occasionally drop. I'll attempt to specify which is which.
What is skinning?
Skinning is the process of removing the fur from dead animals. Skinning does not allow you to scrape scales, pull teeth, or anything else except remove fur from animals. The value of that fur is then split up among the party members.
Who can skin?
Anyone can try to skin a fur. Profession doesn't matter, and you don't even have to have training. However, being trained helps a lot when you try to skin creatures with valuable furs. If you want to learn how to skin, visit Skea Brightfur.
How does skinning work?
Once a creature is killed, the value of the creatures fur is determined. (It seems to me that the more skea a party has, the better your chances of a higher value fur) Then every person in the party who is still standing is put into a random order and each person gets a chance to skin the fur. The higher the value, the more difficult for them to succeed. Once someone successfully skins the fur, the coins you get are split among the party as evenly as possible.
Skea only helps you earn money.
There are a couple of things to take note of here. First the value of the skin is determined before anyone attempts it. The bad skinners are not ruining the fur by only taking it for 1 or 2 coins. That is all the fur was worth in the first place. Having anyone with any Skea in your party only increases your chance of not ruining a fur. Even a person with 100 Skea will occasionally ruin an easy fur, but then the 3 people with 5 Skea still have a chance at it.
Second, in a not so scientific study, I watched the skinning results of two parties. One of them had two 20 skea people and two 0 skea people. The other party had 6 people with between 10 and 20 skea. The party of 6 averaged more coins per fur than the party with only two skinners. The highest skill of either party was only 20, but the party of 6 had a total party skea of more than 100. Now part of the reason for the increase in average is that fewer skins are ruined in the party of 6. However, it seemed to me that the actual values of the skins tended to run a little bit higher. There were more 3s and 4s and less 1s and 2s in the party of 6. This of course is pure speculation. However it would fit with what DT has told us. "The more skea your party has, the more money your party will make"
Who is in the party?
Anyone who hits the creature and is still on the screen when the creature dies is considered to be in the party. In addition anyone on the same screen who is being shared by one of the people who hit the creature is also in the party. So if you are the party skinner, you either need to hit every creature, or get shares from all the active attackers. (well at least the ones who usually hit).
How does the money get divided?
It would appear that the money gets randomly distributed among the party. I have not been able to verify this, but it seems that healers are more likely to get a little bit more of the coin. This is likely because in a large party, the healers are more likely to have the shares of the fighters. Therefore the healers will be considered part of the party for almost every kill whereas the fighters in large groups don't always hit every creature. This means that healers are more often in the random distribution and will seem to get a bit more money than others in the party.
How much Skea do I need?
You need enough skea so that the you don't often ruin the animals you hunt regularly. There would appear to be some kind of an equation based on the value of the skin. If you want a 50% chance to successfully skin an X coin fur, then you need Y skea. Joe said at one point that if you wanted to hunt creatures that average more than 15c furs then you would need more than 100 skea. Of course at the moment, the only creature I know of that averages higher than 15c furs is a Dire Feral. Here is my rough guess on X and Y.
1c furs 0 skea.
Now this doesn't mean that if you have 0 skea you'll only ever skin a 1c fur. It means that if you have 0 skea you have a good chance of successfully skinning a 1c fur. I have seen a person with 0 skea get a 19c large feral fur. I've also heard 0 skea people complain about hunting north forest by themselves because they ruin so many furs.
There does not seem to be any relationship between the type of animal and your ability to successfully skin it. When I had 50 skea. I didn't seem to have any more difficulty skinning Night Wendies than I had skinning Brown Ferals, or Grizzly Bears. (All three tend to average 5 coin furs with the occassional 8 or 10 coiner) With 50 skea I only start to run into trouble and start ruining furs when I start trying to skin creatures which often are worth more than 10c. (the large ferals and the maha). Therefore it is my opinion that your chance to successfully skin is entirely based on the value of the skin regardless of what type of creature it is.
As an aid in helping you determine how much Skea you think you need for the places where you typically hunt, I have gathered a list of Maximum fur values for the various skinnable creatures in the land. Please check the Fur Values page and look for the kinds of creatures you are killing most often and how much they are worth. Compare that number to the list above to determine about how much skea you need. For example if you hunt the passes, killing wendies and night wendies, then you probably don't need more than 50 skea since Night wendies are only worth 10c anyway. In fact if you only trained about 30 skea you'd still likely get a lot of good skins. Most of the wendies and a lot of the night wendies.
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