Armageddon MUD General Discussion Board

General => World Discussion => Topic started by: netflix on April 10, 2010, 06:23:08 PM

Title: Economy
Post by: netflix on April 10, 2010, 06:23:08 PM
There's one thing I've noticed. That I'm sure most people have noticed, and that is the sorta twisted state of the economy when you're talking clanned vs independent.

Now, being as vague as possible here... It seems silly that in 1-2 rl day an average, not even very old, independent, can make enough coin to equal the pay, food, water and place to stay that your average clanned PC makes in 14 days.

And as for the inevitable argument that being independent is more dangerous, well, many clanned jobs are just as dangerous, and still earn the PC far, far, far less. And there are multiple rather safe independent jobs, which still pay far, far, far more then clanned jobs. To the point that it seems to be hurting many of the games clans recruitment efforts.

Should independent work be less profitable?

Should clanned individuals make more pay?

Discuss.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 10, 2010, 06:28:49 PM
Handle it IC.  Feel like your PC is getting stiffed? Tell your boss to "show me the money."

That being said, most clans allow you to do crafting work on the side, as long as it doesn't interfere with your regular duties.  I had a Salarri guard/hunter who was a subclass weapon crafter, and I made huge amounts of 'sid crafting things for the House in my spare time, because crafting is tedious as fuck, and the Agents don't want to have to do all that shit themselves.

If you didn't pick a crafting subclass:  tough beans.  You're unskilled labor, chum.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: RogueGunslinger on April 10, 2010, 06:39:08 PM
I think it's actually just about right in terms of playability.

food-water-sleeping place-little 'sid or just lot's of sid for food, water, and a sleeping place.

In terms of playability I think it's balanced just right. However, it's not very realistic. When you think about the world, it shouldn't be balanced. Indies should be hard-working oft-suffering people. Where as working for a House should be the coziest you can ever get without being of noble blood.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 10, 2010, 06:47:27 PM
In a clan you get respect, mostly trstworthy friends and a safe place to store you greb.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: netflix on April 10, 2010, 06:48:07 PM
That being said, most clans allow you to do crafting work on the side, as long as it doesn't interfere with your regular duties.

From experience, while that is true in some cases, it's not in the majority.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: WWYD on April 10, 2010, 09:53:47 PM
I've always found that the independent PCs making the utterly incredible amounts of money are the ones who don't seem to do much else.

I sort of agree, though, in a way, but I think it's a problem in general with the way things are priced.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: netflix on April 10, 2010, 10:05:43 PM
To give a recent example...

During the course of a conversation, one maybe week (rl) old PC was going on about how they earned enough in a few days to buy a real nice set of higher end armor and weaponry. And another much older PC, in a rather high rank in a clan, was complaining about how they couldn't even afford to buy a new sword.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 10, 2010, 10:07:15 PM
I also have to ask are these indies just grebbing all day long, every day? Are they buying liquor in the taverns?  Are there lazy grebber characters?

I've never made any coin as an indy because - well - my characters spend it and sometimes don't feel like grebbing and don't always sell at the very best they can.  

I don't know.  I don't mean to judge others, but if you're a stupendiously rich indy - ask how you play.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 10, 2010, 10:18:00 PM
It's not really that difficult to be a -social- indie, and still make ridiculous amounts of coin. You just need to have a lot of time to play. What I mean, is that the average Armer who spends 2 hours a day playing, and actually spends time with their family on weekends, isn't likely to amass the magnitude of wealth as someone who can play from work, plus plays at night, and plays on weekends, 5-8 hours every RL day. A social character can only sit at the bar so long, before the player says, "okay that was fun..but what about my SKILLS?"

A crafter PC who forages their own raw materials can get fairly wealthy in very little time, and still be an interesting, fully fleshed-out, well RP'ed character. But, oftentimes, with this payoff comes risk. A crafter PC working for a Merchant House that provides all their raw materials, not only has no risk, but also has no expense. There's no stable fees, no storage (apartment) fees, no cost for tools. They won't earn as much, at least at first. But they also don't have to worry about getting lost in a storm or being raided while looking for that next shard of obsidian.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 10, 2010, 10:19:47 PM
I've found that while some of the grebbing jobs pay a lot, it's often leaned toward people that know things IC. Such as with grebbing (thing) in (place). You sell (stuff) to (person), but never the (one thing), you sell that to (someone else), and it leaves you making a lot more. But beyond that, that specific grebbing job 'does' pay 150 - 450 sid/day if you know that... but if you don't... you're looking at 60-120 sid /day just in water costs... and only making 150-250 sid/day. And that's on days when it's not storming. So... meh. You're always going to find people that game the system and have insane amounts of coin. And it's usually the same people who wouldn't EVER want the crafting recipes list published... but have the entire list of them on an excel file and make 5-10k per rl week selling 'rare' or 'expensive' items to shops. It's only hurting newbies. (Yes, that last sentence was half-sarcastic).
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 10, 2010, 10:22:23 PM
You're probably right Lizzy. This is the "WOW" problem on Arm.  It is also why I used to buy gold on WOW because, well, I didn't have all that time to play but wanted cool stuff.  And my money was worth less than my time.

Suggested solutions:  1. More bandits to curb those wealthy indies (if this  even a real problem, permadeath is nice)
                               2. There is no two.


Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 10, 2010, 10:26:56 PM
I also have to ask are these indies just grebbing all day long, every day? Are they buying liquor in the taverns?  Are there lazy grebber characters?

I've never made any coin as an indy because - well - my characters spend it and sometimes don't feel like grebbing and don't always sell at the very best they can.  

I don't know.  I don't mean to judge others, but if you're a stupendiously rich indy - ask how you play.

Most wealthy indies are a fighting class with a crafting subclass.  They don't have haggle, so they can't buy low and sell high like merchants, and they fail their crafts a lot, but they get their raw materials for only the cost of stabling fees and the food and water they burn out in the desert (which is typically a paltry cost, in comparison to the profit potential).

It's not really that difficult to be a -social- indie, and still make ridiculous amounts of coin. You just need to have a lot of time to play. What I mean, is that the average Armer who spends 2 hours a day playing, and actually spends time with their family on weekends, isn't likely to amass the magnitude of wealth as someone who can play from work, plus plays at night, and plays on weekends, 5-8 hours every RL day. A social character can only sit at the bar so long, before the player says, "okay that was fun..but what about my SKILLS?"


I've had merchants who could've easily turned over greater than 5k in less than a RL hour, crafting times included.  You don't need to have high play times at all.  If you want to be -social-, you definitely need higher playtimes, though, because I've found that people typically just kind of forget about you unless you're on every day.

You're probably right Lizzy. This is the "WOW" problem on Arm.  It is also why I used to buy gold on WOW because, well, I didn't have all that time to play but wanted cool stuff.  And my money was worth less than my time.

Suggested solutions:  1. More bandits to curb those wealthy indies (if this  even a real problem, permadeath is nice)
                               2. There is no two.




Bandits won't curb smart indies at all.  When you can make a 160 'sid dagger out of shit you just found lying on the ground,  you can drop thousands of 'sid at a time to your local bandit(s) and still be banking mad loot.  Even better, just pay newbs in your zone to go and forage the stuff for you, and pay them well.  They won't do it for very long, because eventually newbies get better jobs, but almost everyone needs some extra 'sid to buy starting gear, and thanks to Armageddon's gritty harshness, there is an endless supply of newbs to go out and get stuff for you, so you don't have to worry about the bandits at all.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Malken on April 10, 2010, 10:31:11 PM
Oh, man, attempting to fix the economy would be like playing Jenga..

Armageddon is a very static world, when it comes to the economy.. Once you learn how to make 'sids, it becomes very easy to use the same technique character after character.. The prices paid are always the same, and the 'sources' of incomes always 'pop' in the same room, in the same area. There's no, say, random obsidian deposit pop, it's always in the same room. There's always a tree to cut down if the room says there are trees to cut down. There's always salt to be found, etc..

I think a solution, and it's been proposed before, would be to remove the 5 limits per shop, and instead lowering the price paid for an item the more the shopkeeper has of said item.

A silky dress would be bought for 200 'sids at first, but if no one buys them, and the shopkeeper has 50 of them, next time he'll only be willing to pay 20 'sids for it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 10, 2010, 10:39:22 PM
Another solution would be to RP that it takes a IC couple of days to make a 160 sid dagger? 
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Malken on April 10, 2010, 10:40:49 PM
Another solution would be to RP that it takes a IC couple of days to make a 160 sid dagger? 


You're asking a lot, m'lady.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 10, 2010, 11:02:22 PM
RPing that it takes a couple of days to make a dagger is pretty pointless, if someone only -has- two hours to play at a time. That would mean, they'd log in, attempt to make a dagger. At the end of the 2 hours, they'd actually type "craft bone into dagger" and hope they succeed, and then they'd log out.

Two hours of roleplaying making a dagger..it takes 15 minutes for a blacksmith to forge a dagger out of iron. Why in the world would it take 2 game-days to whittle a piece of wood? And more, why would anyone want to spend 2 hours roleplaying it?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 10, 2010, 11:12:59 PM
I assume a 160sid dagger is more than a bit of wood.  If it's not we have two things we can do:

1. Ask the immortals to fix the obviously broken economy  <--- not going to work
2. RP that it takes a long time to craft something with care that will net us 160sids.


Is it asking a lot?  Yes.  Would I do it, probably not.  But then, I rarely have a non-special-app character with more than a few hundred sid at any one time.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 10, 2010, 11:26:49 PM
Totally missing the point Sinna. It has nothing to do with whether a specific dagger is worth more than 160 sids. It's that there are items in the game that are worth -significantly- more than that, and you don't have to be the one who makes them, and ANYONE who gets their hands on these items, which may or may not be common, or rare..can very easily and quickly get rich.

There are things that are very common, but made out of things "here" that sell for a lot "there." And they're lightweight enough, that if you made and/or acquired only three of them "here" and brought them "there" to sell, you would make more sids in that two hours of roleplaying, than your character would normally earn in a game-year working for a monthly salary.

Now imagine doing that only twice every RL week. Just twice. Out of 7 days..out of maybe 25 hours of game play, including weekends..you spend 4 of that 25 hours acquiring three things that are easy/cheap/free to acquire, and selling them for a whole lot wherever they are valued.

You now have more sids in the bank, after a RL month, than most nobles get for their stipend.

It's not that the economy is "broken" - it isn't that people aren't appropriately roleplaying. It isn't that people are twinking. It's just the nature of economy. It works that way in real life too. I can easily get 30 Percosetts from my doctor, three times a year. I only pay $5 for them because my health insurance covers it with a co-pay. I can then sell those Percosetts on the black market for $5 per pill. That's $150 on a 5-buck investment, and I can earn it inside of 2 hours. Is the Percosett economy broken? Of course not. It's a seller's market, that's all. Supply and demand. I have more access to something than you do, and you want it.

Yes, there is definitely room for improvement in the economy system of Armageddon. But suggesting that everyone just magickally agree to roleplay a more balanced economy isn't the way to go about it.

Personally I like Malken's idea. Though I'd rather see it be a personal sales limit than a mass sales limit. In other words, *I* can sell anythign to any shop, in any quantity. But my -first- item will fetch me max price, and each subsequent item will fetch me less and less until I'm getting 0 sids per item. And, each -other- person who tries to sell to an NPC, has the same experience.

But the resale price, would remain high. So this would encourage people to spend more time selling to other PCs, while still allowing people who don't have any PCs to sell to, the opportunity to earn food and water and a little profit to enjoy themselves.
And it would allow buyers the opportunity to buy something that the PCs might normally have, though they'd have to pay a premium to get it from an NPC.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Delstro on April 10, 2010, 11:52:49 PM
When merchants, nobles, and templars deal with commoners, they need to know:

Independents make 10x the coin, and should be charged 10x the price.
Clannies make 150 coins every two weeks? Templars should charge the house fines.
Merchant specially, should give tips/bonuses/free money to their underlings whenever they charge and independent 10x the price.

Why are you charging that price?

More than likely, that independent will never buy something from you again, so you need to milk them for every tear they can produce.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 11, 2010, 12:01:52 AM
Is it really true that in one RL week, without spam foraging / crafting you can make 10k in sids?
If this is true, it makes me very sad because it violates the concept of a gritty and dark world.

 :'(
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Malken on April 11, 2010, 12:12:10 AM
Is it really true that in one RL week, without spam foraging / crafting you can make 10k in sids?
If this is true, it makes me very sad because it violates the concept of a gritty and dark world.

 :'(

I doubt it's possible anymore.. Trust me, all the current IC events have made making a fortune the easy way a thing of the past.

It is still possible to make a decent-to-above average amount of coin, but nothing like you could in the past (and it's a lot more dangerous, as well) ... If the Staff keeps it up, all of my old tricks will be ruined in the near future  :'(

Oh, and trust me, the Imms WILL start asking question if you have a small fortune in your bank account and you aren't a very long-lived character.

There's nothing scarier than Nessalin appearing out of nowhere and asking you how you've managed to make X amount of coin.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 11, 2010, 01:14:21 AM
Players who are crying about 'sids don't understand how Zalanthan society works, or really how the game works.

Coins, like skills, will only get you so far.  If it's easy for you to make them, guess what:  it's probably easy for everyone else to make them, too.  You might be able to drop a 5k 'sid bribe...but it will only be useful against newbs.  Just like having good combat skills by yourself is generally only useful against newbs.

Coins can't buy you friends who won't sell you out to the next highest bidder.  Coins can only buy you stupid shit from NPCs that make your character -look- like a badass.

The only things that matter, really, in terms of raw power, are relationships with social elements that are supposed to be powerful, according to the documentation.  E.g. templars, nobles, GMHs if you're in the city, or whatever d-elf tribe claims the current zone you're riding through.  There is no amount of coin that will save you if a templar -really- doesn't like you.  There is really no amount of coin that can compensate for favors from nobility, even if the actual noble PC doesn't have two 'sid to rub together.

In other words:  boasting about coins is idle bragging.  Not having them is great:  it gives your character something to strive for.  Instead of bitching about how everyone else has it so easy, GET A PIECE OF THAT PIE IN-CHARACTER.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 11, 2010, 01:26:32 AM
But Synth - imagine you're a noble and you decide to have a competition - suddenly I have to wonder if a 1 large prize even worth it to most _players_ or would they rather be out ther grebbing salt?
 
Suddenly half a Jr noble's monthly stipend is a wussy bribe?  Is that so?   ???
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 11, 2010, 01:36:09 AM
But Synth - imagine you're a noble and you decide to have a competition - suddenly I have to wonder if a 1 large prize even worth it to most _players_ or would they rather be out ther grebbing salt?
 
Suddenly half a Jr noble's monthly stipend is a wussy bribe?  Is that so?   ???

So don't offer money.  If it's a fighting competition, offer a starting honorary ranked position in the House Guard to the winner.  If you're an Oashi, make the prize a keg of the ultra-rare shit that only nobility can even attempt to purchase.  If you're a Kuraci, offer a brick of the high-grade Hydroblaster spice that will fucking blow your mind.  Make a contract with a Salarri merchant and have one of their mastercrafters create a one-of-a-kind unique weapon specifically for the competition, and offer FAVORS and ACCESS TO POWER in return instead of coins, which any halfway decent Salarri doesn't fucking need anyway.

You can make it work, seriously.  Crying on the GDB doesn't solve anything.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 11, 2010, 01:47:58 AM
Who's crying?  I'm happy playing the way I play  and permadeath does fine in moderating the wealthy.  I just don't think it makes sense to have a game that says shit is rough when shit isn't that rough after all.  

It's sorta like playing a game in which you say water is rare when it plainly isn't.  Oh. Wait.

Edit to add:

Your rewards for competition sound great Synth except that this is a desolute and ruined world.  Why should I give away ultra mind blowing spice when I half a brick of the regular shit should be priceless?  Aren't we just contributing to the runaway economy problem?
 
Keep in mind, I'm not bitching (I really am not invested in this) I'm just curious how to solve a perceived problem.  This is one of the reasons I love the Byn and "real" rinthy characters - because they are playing the gritty world that we read about on the website - the one where a chipped dagger is damn nice.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: mansa on April 11, 2010, 01:52:23 AM
Who's crying?  I'm happy playing the way I play  and permadeath does fine in moderating the wealthy.  I just don't think it makes sense to have a game that says shit is rough when shit isn't that rough after all. 

It's sorta like playing a game in which you say water is rare when it plainly isn't.  Oh. Wait.




Casual Gaming has reared it's ugly, gigantic head.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 11, 2010, 01:55:24 AM
Casual Gaming has reared it's ugly, gigantic head.

I don't get it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 11, 2010, 02:32:55 AM
Your rewards for competition sound great Synth except that this is a desolute and ruined world.  Why should I give away ultra mind blowing spice when I half a brick of the regular shit should be priceless?  Aren't we just contributing to the runaway economy problem?

That's just one example, if you're a Kuraci. Really though, I'm assuming any Kuraci merchant worth his sandcloth would really have enough coins to actually offer a decent coin-based reward, since you know...merchant house power is kind of predicated on that.

And no, it doesn't "contribute" to it, if by "contribute" you mean "make it worse." Yes, it's a solution designed to take the perceived problem into account, but it's merely neutral in that regard.

Keep in mind, I'm not bitching (I really am not invested in this) I'm just curious how to solve a perceived problem

...but there's your problem, right there.  Perceived.  Someone on the GDB is always crying about how someone in-game isn't playing how they would like them to be playing.  One week it's magickers.  The next week it's elves.  The next week it's half-elves.  The next week it's half-giants.  The next week it's indies.  The next week it's GMH sponsored-role leaders.  The next week it's raiders.  The next week it's burglars.  The next week it's militia members.

I say:  if the Staff isn't kicking you in the nuts for what you're doing...guess what:  it's probably alright, man.  Let people make their coins, like it fucking MATTERS.  Coins won't keep your character alive when the shit hits the fan.  Nobody will ever read an original submission that consists of a character sitting alone in a room separating his 100k 'sid into neat stacks, after which he rolls around in them like Scrooge McDuck.  Veteran players/characters will not jump to do your bidding just because you throw ridiculous sums of money their way.  The best you can hope for with money alone is to sit in your expensive apartment typing 'l me' to examine your fancy gear, reveling in your 1337ness.  That is pretty much the extent of money's usefulness as far as the game is concerned. 

Really, every substantial relationship that develops in this game occurs because the other player likes playing around you primarily, and other IC considerations like how much coin you have to offer are only secondary concerns...because just about anyone can offer coins, dude.  If people are hanging all around someone with a lot of coins, it probably isn't just because they have lots of coins.  Trust me, nobody is winning Armageddon by virtue of the size of their character's bank account.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 11, 2010, 02:39:39 AM
I totally agree with all you said in your last post, Synth.  I guess I just wasn't understanding what you were getting at earlier. 

Regarding veteran player / characters (as you put it) not jumping to characters who throw around money: I gusess I don't play that way.  If I'm playing dirt poor who wants coin, she will jump for the coin.  Plenty of my characters, when approached by nobles or templars almost always say "Yes" not because I want them too, but because the environment makes it pretty damn difficult to say no. 

What I'm trying to say is that if the world is as really harsh as advertised and someone offers you 500 coins to slit your mother's throat, you really ought to consider it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: IAmJacksOpinion on April 11, 2010, 04:20:39 AM
Well, lets take a mathematical approach:


CLANNED
*Benefits and compensation received or consumed within a month (2 IRL weeks.)

Salary                 + 300
Lodging/storage  + 500   (125 day apartment lease for 250 sid, x2 = 250 days (a month is 233ish?) for 500 sid.)
Water                + 315    (Figured as .5 flask per IRL day for 45 sid (roughly allanak price - tuluk would be significantly less.)
Food                  + 350  (We're going with a 25 sid meal per IRL day, (25 x 14))
----------------------------------
Total                 1,465

Non-concrete benefits:
- SAFE training. (You won't find an opponent willing to 'disengage' you out in the desert.)
- Some free gear. (It's quite common for clans to toss new characters a helmet, a gorget, or a breastplate for temporary use.)
- Discounts  on items within that clan. (Which could include that bad-ass gear the indie is bragging about buying.)
- Ability to earn within the clan via crafting, or bonuses for helping fill an order.


Granted, indies can often do away with much of the food and water cost from that list with their freedom to travel to nearby resource spawning points. (Though, with frequent desert travel, the water cost would easily double to the 650 ballpark.)

At the end of the day, if I were looking to get rich I'd go indie over guard/hunter any day of the week, however being in a clan does have more benefits than are readily apparent via your meager salary.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Cutthroat on April 11, 2010, 08:11:49 AM
Being clanned, or in an independent group, is far more appealing to me compared to constantly going it alone and making money. For some players, it's the opposite way. And that's fine too.

I feel the economy in Arm is self-repairing. Characters that involve themselves with other characters IG tend to prosper socially, skillfully, and financially. Although a noble or merchant house employee might make 400/month, they get a status boost in their city that no independent person or outsider making 4,000/month can ever claim. Characters that don't involve themselves with other characters will have whatever opportunities are left in game to make lots of money quickly, but they will never have the required assistance to get into plots, or even to survive for a long time. Most characters would and should treat these people like nobodies, because that is what they are.

The game fosters cooperation - not with everyone, but with who it makes IC sense to cooperate with - and rewards those players by giving them unique things to have fun with. At the same time, the game rewards spending time with money and skill boosts. However, the characters that play to hoard money always take a backseat to the characters that run and participate in the game's varied storylines. That is not to say that there isn't room for both kinds of characters, but in the grand scheme of things, rich independents tend to make little to no dent in the game world.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Delstro on April 11, 2010, 09:46:26 AM
Well, lets take a mathematical approach:


CLANNED
*Benefits and compensation received or consumed within a month (2 IRL weeks.)

Salary                 + 300
Lodging/storage  + 500   (125 day apartment lease for 250 sid, x2 = 250 days (a month is 233ish?) for 500 sid.)
Water                + 315    (Figured as .5 flask per IRL day for 45 sid (roughly allanak price - tuluk would be significantly less.)
Food                  + 350  (We're going with a 25 sid meal per IRL day, (25 x 14))
----------------------------------
Total                 1,465

Non-concrete benefits:
- SAFE training. (You won't find an opponent willing to 'disengage' you out in the desert.)
- Some free gear. (It's quite common for clans to toss new characters a helmet, a gorget, or a breastplate for temporary use.)
- Discounts  on items within that clan. (Which could include that bad-ass gear the indie is bragging about buying.)
- Ability to earn within the clan via crafting, or bonuses for helping fill an order.

Let us keep being mathematical.

I am going to pretend I am a Tuluki Salarri here:

I am selling one sword, relatively nice, that has a base price of 250.

There are three groups of people:
Unaffiliated commoner that is bound to disappear within the next week (A.K.A. hunters, grebbers, explorers, etc, and they are generally forgettable to a wealthy merchant), I want to make as much money from these types as possible, and donít care about repeat their repeat business.

Affiliated commoner that is bound to be a repeat customer at one time or another, I want to make money from these types, but I also want to leave a favorable impression on them.

Nobles are the third group. They are more than likely going to be repeat customers, and I donít care too much about making money from them directly as they are usually going to be the smallest of the three groups.


For our practices:
An unaffiliated commoner that may die or be forgotten within the next week: This sword would sell for 750+ coins. This is three times the price, and they can usually afford it. Sometimes this sword would be four times the price, if the PC looks like they can afford it or doesnít hassle much.

For an affiliated commoner: This sword would sell for 1.5 or 2 times the price, depending on if their house benefits me or mine.  Translation price is 325-500 coins. If this PC has a long record of buying from me, and I have a lot of coin, I may just gift them the sword.

For a noble: The sword may be anywhere from free to 1.5 times the price, depending on if this house is going to do more buying in the future, and they are agents for when the noble house wants to buy a new uniform weapon for an entire unit.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: IntuitiveApathy on April 11, 2010, 01:59:58 PM
I say:  if the Staff isn't kicking you in the nuts for what you're doing...guess what:  it's probably alright, man.  Let people make their coins, like it fucking MATTERS.  Coins won't keep your character alive when the shit hits the fan.  Nobody will ever read an original submission that consists of a character sitting alone in a room separating his 100k 'sid into neat stacks, after which he rolls around in them like Scrooge McDuck.  Veteran players/characters will not jump to do your bidding just because you throw ridiculous sums of money their way.  The best you can hope for with money alone is to sit in your expensive apartment typing 'l me' to examine your fancy gear, reveling in your 1337ness.  That is pretty much the extent of money's usefulness as far as the game is concerned. 

...

Really, every substantial relationship that develops in this game occurs because the other player likes playing around you primarily, and other IC considerations like how much coin you have to offer are only secondary concerns...because just about anyone can offer coins, dude.  If people are hanging all around someone with a lot of coins, it probably isn't just because they have lots of coins.  Trust me, nobody is winning Armageddon by virtue of the size of their character's bank account.

I completely agree with you regarding the state of the game.

But it's the state of the game that's exactly the problem (and it's been this way for a long time, and we've gone over possible fixes, and we've beaten that dead horse):

(1)  It is relatively easy for a player that knows how to make money, to make money.
(2)  Since many players can make substantial sums of money, the value of money goes down the drain for the players.
(3)  Since money does not have worth to most veteran players, this creates a discontinuity with the game world, which is supposed to be harsh, desolate, resource-poor, etc, wherein players are no longer playing their characters as we would expect them to be played in that environment.

In short, what I'm saying is that money should matter. 

If you've got 100k in the bank, you're 1000x (or more?) richer than your average commoner.  Sure, PC's are the exception.  But when you've got that kind of a wealth gap, that should mean something in the world.  What about comparing indie PC's to clanned - 100k in the bank?  That's a lifetime of saved up salary for your average clannie. 

The way to solve this problem?  Take away the ability to make money so easily, and players will come to value money again.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Kryos on April 11, 2010, 03:29:44 PM
I think NPC merchants should also adjust their prices based on clanned+rank vrs indep/unclanned.   If you're joe blow, they are going to stiff you.  That obsidian sword:  definiely a 400 sid item.  But if Joe, Borsail Wyvern or Tenneshi Aide, walks in.  Suddenly that sword is worth 100.

Though, to make this fall in to place correctly, there would need to be a char-gen shopping place to get some basic equipment for all characters, as the balance of starting coins is just about perfect right now.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 11, 2010, 03:33:36 PM
They already do that to a degree. I don't think it's too IC to say that with most GMH's at least, when you shop in one of their stores, you get a HEFTY discount, almost wholesale, if you belong to them.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Kryos on April 11, 2010, 03:36:58 PM
Yes, but they aren't stiffing indeps or offering lesser discounts to other clanned.  If you factor the economy by a scale of 2-3 this way, suddenly things get a lot more real.

Note: This is for what they will PAY for things, too.  This is where a number of indeps 'grind' out their money.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 11, 2010, 03:41:04 PM
They ARE stiffing independents. The fact that they're not giving other clanned pcs the same discount is realistic. Your life is sworn to S'larr, buddy, not Kadius. You are S'larr's bitch, so why should Kadius sell you jewelry cheap? Sure, your Kadian agent or merchant may well cut you a deal, but I don't think it would be realistic to draw that line guaranteed, all the way across the board.

And when someone's buying for 2 small and selling for a large, I think that's enough of a mark-up to say that you ARE stiffing the shit out of indies on your buying price.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Spoon on April 11, 2010, 04:00:07 PM
How about Nenyuk heavily taxing accounts with more than a few thousand? Maybe this would only apply to commoners. I know it would be more of a OOC workaround, but the whole Nenyuk bank is already a kind of OOC workaround. Basically I see the problem at the moment is that commoners can acquire huge amounts of money with no consequence for having it. I never understood why the city states don't tax the balls off rich, un-affiliated commoners. Just a few VERY basic ideas that need work, critique and elaboration. Directly the problem is that once you play the game a while, you can make too much coin. It's like super-liberal-golden-paved-milk-and-honeyville when you have the know how, which I don't feel reflects the world in the docs.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 11, 2010, 04:24:26 PM
How about Nenyuk heavily taxing accounts with more than a few thousand? Maybe this would only apply to commoners. I know it would be more of a OOC workaround, but the whole Nenyuk bank is already a kind of OOC workaround. Basically I see the problem at the moment is that commoners can acquire huge amounts of money with no consequence for having it. I never understood why the city states don't tax the balls off rich, un-affiliated commoners. Just a few VERY basic ideas that need work, critique and elaboration. Directly the problem is that once you play the game a while, you can make too much coin. It's like super-liberal-golden-paved-milk-and-honeyville when you have the know how, which I don't feel reflects the world in the docs.

This is interesting because it might lead to more people keeping coin on their person and this would lead to more theft / murder, maybe.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 11, 2010, 07:01:30 PM
Non-City-Based Tribals should be taxed big-time by Nenyuk if they have accounts at the bank.

Allanak should impose a percentage fee on all goods sold by Tulukis to shopkeepers in Allanak.
Tuluk should impose the same on all goods sold by Nakkis  to shopkeepers in Tuluk.

Anyone should have the same chance to get the "local price" when they BUY..because buying is providing income to the shop, which pays a tax, which provides income to the city.

But people who don't live in that city should have to pay for the privilege of selling in that city, above and beyond the customary merchant's token. There are plenty of people who don't bother getting those tokens, because they never try to sell anything to PCs, so no one gives them any grief for selling stuff to the NPC shops.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Delstro on April 11, 2010, 08:58:03 PM
I agree completely.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 11, 2010, 09:28:00 PM
Non-City-Based Tribals should be taxed big-time by Nenyuk if they have accounts at the bank.

Nenyuk doesn't need to tax accounts, because they are getting what amounts to interest-free loans from anyone with more than a few 'sid to rub together.  If they put a fee on accounts, more people would keep their 'sid locked up in their backpacks, and that would be less 'sid for Nenyuk to use for their own purposes.

Allanak should impose a percentage fee on all goods sold by Tulukis to shopkeepers in Allanak.
Tuluk should impose the same on all goods sold by Nakkis  to shopkeepers in Tuluk.

The city-states -do- impose fees.  They're called bribes (or gifts) to your friendly local templar or militiaman.  Generally, you also have to pay taxes to your local Guild agent, and taxes to your local desert-elves, and taxes to the resident rogue magicker as well.  Not paying them is exceptionally unwise, over the long term. 

Anyone should have the same chance to get the "local price" when they BUY..because buying is providing income to the shop, which pays a tax, which provides income to the city.

Selling also provides an income to the shop.  That breastplate you just sold to Salarr for 200 'sid?  They turn right around and sell it for nearly 600.  Sure, the profit margin isn't as good as it would be if they had their own crafters make it, but that's 400 'sid they just made by doing nothing but letting it take up a little space in the shop.

But people who don't live in that city should have to pay for the privilege of selling in that city, above and beyond the customary merchant's token. There are plenty of people who don't bother getting those tokens, because they never try to sell anything to PCs, so no one gives them any grief for selling stuff to the NPC shops.

The GMHs would not like to see indie crafters get hammered on, see above.  Indie crafters do a shitload of work that the GMHs don't have to coordinate, worry about, or even spend a second thought on.  The only time indie crafters become a nuisance is when they are selling directly to the populace.  Even then, the amount an indie crafter can impinge on Salarr or Kadius' profits is really quite minimal.  Pretty much all the cool shit that PCs want is based on House-only crafting recipes that indies can't even attempt to craft.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: jstorrie on April 11, 2010, 09:29:19 PM
If you aren't making a bunch of coin on the side to add to your clanned role, well, that's your problem. If it entices you to go indie to get sweet loot, go for it; that just means you won't have any friends to protect or avenge you when my clanned PC comes a-knockin' for your boots.

I also would not overestimate the value of hard sid; my last clanned PC died with like 90k in liquid assets. The coin did not matter very much. As a commoner, there are many things you simply can't buy no matter how rich you areĖif you don't believe me, play a merchant house agent and try to buy some metal or a mul.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 11, 2010, 09:48:50 PM
Synthesis, I think that's about the best post so far in this thread.

Jstorrie: Entirely too true regarding assets vs coin in wealth.

Lizzie: Tribals: Find out IC.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: tortall on April 11, 2010, 10:17:27 PM
Synthesis, I think that's about the best post so far in this thread.

Jstorrie: Entirely too true regarding assets vs coin in wealth.

Lizzie: Tribals: Find out IC.


This. This so VERY much.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Spoon on April 12, 2010, 06:20:26 AM
Non-City-Based Tribals should be taxed big-time by Nenyuk if they have accounts at the bank.

Nenyuk doesn't need to tax accounts, because they are getting what amounts to interest-free loans from anyone with more than a few 'sid to rub together.  If they put a fee on accounts, more people would keep their 'sid locked up in their backpacks, and that would be less 'sid for Nenyuk to use for their own purposes.

Yes this makes sense, but my post Lizzie was responding to was about limiting commoners hoards of sids. As a Nenyuk business plan it sucks, sure. But for RP, if people had to actually carry their coins across the desert/city when they wanted to makes large purchases there would be massive employment opportunities for thieves, thugs muggers and bodyguards. People would start to pay the consequence of having a lot of money, rather than having the highly convenient ATM of Nenyuk.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 12, 2010, 06:38:12 AM
I would be totally in favor of bank accounts being limited to the city that they are in instead of being like a large global network.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 12, 2010, 07:35:22 AM
Well not exactly limiting it to the same city but, perhaps, restricting.

If you're from Tuluk and you're in Allanak and need to use the bank, Nenyuk would charge a fee for "transport services." No waiting time, just a fee. It wouldn't even need to be a big fee - 5%-10% of the transaction (ever use those change machines in supermarkets? You put in $400 worth of quarters/dimes/nickels/pennies and they give you $370 in bills).

And a Nakki using the bank in Tuluk would have a fee. Everyone using the bank in Luir's Outpost would have a smaller fee, except for Kuracis and "official citizens" of Luirs (there's a citizen office in the Post, no idea if it's ever been used).

The point of all these ideas is to provide a money sink, because it's too easy to hoarde wealth, and not have any need to spend it, thus devaluing the wealth and all it can buy. You want to know why some of my characters have taken up apartments in every single building in every location where rentals are available? That's why. Because they've been TOO rich and needed something to spend it on. If Nenyuk had skimmed from the account, my characters would've had to be more careful with their spending, AND their earning.
Earn too much, it'll cost ya. Spend too little, it'll cost ya.

Synthesis is right - what he says is how things SHOULD be. But they're not that way. You -cannot- rely on shelling out protection money to the Guild, the rogue magicker, the local temparate, the local police department, and Amos Borsail. In the 3+years I've been playing, I've had to bribe with just one character. With that character, it made sense for her to stuff several pockets. But she searched..actually tried sending word to the different organizations to let them know she had sids and was willing to pay them. The Guild wasn't active. The templar retired. The other templar got killed. The local unaffiliated assassin didn't play when I did. The raiders liked my character and didn't demand sids.

As for the tribal situation yeah..I know the IC story. I also know it isn't spread among every non-city tribe, and every PC belonging to those tribes, nor is it done in a way that allows tribals to HAVE accounts, but simply be required to pay a fee for the privilege. I know all about the incident. It is totally and utterly NOT what I'm talking about.

Nenyuk should be skimming from anyone who is using a branch of their bank in a city they don't belong to, and it should be a legitimate standard policy of Nenyuk to do so.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 12, 2010, 08:08:34 AM
Bribes are not taxes.
Two different things. 

Bribes fill the pockets on an individual and are not enforced by law.
Taxes fill the state's coffers and are enforced by law.
 
It may seem like the two are related because to the person paying they still loose out, but one is based on corruption and one is based on the rule of law.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: EldritchOrigins on April 12, 2010, 10:40:13 AM
Why don't clans just pay people more then?  I'll answer.

Clans provide two things that can't be bought with money. Safety and Friends, diferent in some respects but they do overlap.

Sure, not all people in a clan like each other, but for the most part, for the sake of the clan functioning, they back each other up and help each other become stronger/more prominant (even the virtual members and npcs when it is appropriate.  Independents don't have any kind of structure backing them up.  Anything they do, they do alone and if they screw up, it usually costs their life. Friends also give people other people do things with to do things with (That they know that they can pretty much trust, for the most part).  These things are much more difficult to achive with an Indy character.  This sort of thing can't be bought with coins.

Independents are only limited by the amount of time they want to put in.  If they forage salt, or do whatever for 10 hours a day, then they will have something to show for it.  But again, anyone that does anything alone out in the desert is taking a great risk.

If it's a matter of clan people not having enough coins, maybe it is just that people in those roles don't know how to make money.  I've seen some clanned people that seem to be very well off.  But for those that don't know how to make a little on the side, maybe clans should offer special tasks for members to earn extra coins (and want to put the time and effort into something to make that extra coin)?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 12, 2010, 10:50:24 AM
It isn't that clanned people don't have enough sids, Eldritch. It's that *anyone* (clanned or otherwise) has the ability of amassing such disproportionate amounts of riches that the economy ends up being totally out of whack. Some of us are saying the reason for this issue is because the NPCs are being treated like ATM machines. Some of us who are saying this, are proposing that something done about those "ATM machines" to add "withdraw fees." To not prevent people from getting rich, but to give people who are using those NPCs to get rich, to consider a little more carefully their choices.

If everyone learns that you can forage a shard of plastic in Red Storm, and sell that shard for 500 sids in Tuluk and 400 sids in Luir's and 600 sids in Cenyr, and a shard of plastic hardly weighs anything and once you get your forage skill up past novice you can get them very easily...

Then all of a sudden everyone who is claiming to be just some poor nobody grebber is getting filthy rich, just by selling *2* shards of plastic per RL week. It makes it pointless to be wealthy, if everyone is wealthy. It becomes pointless to be "someone influential" and try and pay for an assassination against Joe Nobody, when Joe Nobody has more sids than you and can easily buy that contract out from under your nose. It skews politics, and it also makes people look at rinthis wearing silks and wonder WTF.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 12, 2010, 11:00:31 AM
The question I have is how every character you have after the first knows that shard of plastic is worth 500 sids in Tuluk?

Do all of Synth's characters automatically now have the 900 recipes he's amassed in his excel file? 

I remember playing a burglar once and wandering into a room that had more greb in it than a GMH's warehouse. 
 
It isn't realistic and it violates the core of the game, IMO. 

But, it's alright.  It gives the burglar something to do over the course of the next few IG days - hauling that stuff to the fence then wasting the coin on tattoos and drinks.

Heh. Maybe that should be the concept of my next character - "the balance maker."   ;)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: EldritchOrigins on April 12, 2010, 11:14:26 AM
I doubt that suddenly all indenpendents become wealthy over night.  I'm sure several of them die trying.

I kind of like the idea that it's possible to make coins but maybe there should be danger involved, and there are always anomolous items out there that can make lots of coins.  These anomolies should probably be reported to staff so they can check and make sure that things are working as they should.

But for the most part, the problem of the economy has already been 'fixed' in a way that I think is better than fixing all the different ways to earn coin, and that is by limiting what coins (and coins alone) can get a person.  And by that I mean that coins will get you so far, but without entering the political arena, you can't get much.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 12, 2010, 11:14:48 AM
Sinna again, you're missing the point. There are some awesome roleplayers in Arm who will adhere to knowing only what their current character -would- know at any given moment.

There are also power-gamers who don't care that you are sticking true to what your character knows, because THEY know that all of THEIR characters can sell that shard of plastic for 500 sids.

Then, there are the players whose characters just plain end up knowing this stuff, through the course of normal roleplay. These items you can get rich from aren't rare. They're common. They're things you will see when you go to those market shops and see that the shopkeeper is charging 1000 sids to sell it to you. And that is when your *character* learns - hey - this stupid useless piece of plastic is worth something. I'll have to pick up the next few I see instead of leaving them on the ground.

This is WHY it is so easy. Because the code is set up in a way that makes it easy. The methodology the code makes us of, to make it so easy, is the shopkeeper code. The "sid-dispensing" code. It makes it easy for people to learn what sells for stupid amounts of sids, It makes it easy for people to learn which items are the absolute cheapest to acquire, it makes it easy for people to get rich, who otherwise wouldn't have any IC interest or need to get rich. It makes it difficult, in fact, for people who WANT their characters to be poor, to allow their characters to be poor. It makes players have to actually work at it to keep their characters ignorant.

Because it's just too easy for their characters to learn, totally ICly, how easy it is to get rich.

No one has to cheat, or take knowledge from previous characters, or have a spreadsheet, or know the recipes for crafting items. Your burglar who fences a GMH-sized apartment full of crap is just one example of how easy it is for someone to get rich.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: tortall on April 12, 2010, 12:10:13 PM
Why don't clans just pay people more then?  I'll answer.

Clans provide two things that can't be bought with money. Safety and Friends, diferent in some respects but they do overlap.

Sure, not all people in a clan like each other, but for the most part, for the sake of the clan functioning, they back each other up and help each other become stronger/more prominant (even the virtual members and npcs when it is appropriate.  Independents don't have any kind of structure backing them up.  Anything they do, they do alone and if they screw up, it usually costs their life. Friends also give people other people do things with to do things with (That they know that they can pretty much trust, for the most part).  These things are much more difficult to achive with an Indy character.  This sort of thing can't be bought with coins.

Independents are only limited by the amount of time they want to put in.  If they forage salt, or do whatever for 10 hours a day, then they will have something to show for it.  But again, anyone that does anything alone out in the desert is taking a great risk.

If it's a matter of clan people not having enough coins, maybe it is just that people in those roles don't know how to make money.  I've seen some clanned people that seem to be very well off.  But for those that don't know how to make a little on the side, maybe clans should offer special tasks for members to earn extra coins (and want to put the time and effort into something to make that extra coin)?

First off, if you're an indept and want to have said structure.... You can have it without ever joining a clan. What do you think the partisan system is supposed to be? Said independent does something for you, you give them something in return. They end up working with your actual employees, make friends, get drunk, have lovers..... Not all independents are ISO.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 12, 2010, 12:12:26 PM
All I know is that creating a working economy would be hard as heck to do in a game.  In the end I guess it doesn't really matter, except that it makes rewarding characters difficult. 

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: EldritchOrigins on April 12, 2010, 12:16:52 PM
Why don't clans just pay people more then?  I'll answer.

Clans provide two things that can't be bought with money. Safety and Friends, diferent in some respects but they do overlap.

Sure, not all people in a clan like each other, but for the most part, for the sake of the clan functioning, they back each other up and help each other become stronger/more prominant (even the virtual members and npcs when it is appropriate. Independents don't have any kind of structure backing them up.  Anything they do, they do alone and if they screw up, it usually costs their life. Friends also give people other people do things with to do things with (That they know that they can pretty much trust, for the most part).  These things are much more difficult to achive with an Indy character.  This sort of thing can't be bought with coins.

Independents are only limited by the amount of time they want to put in.  If they forage salt, or do whatever for 10 hours a day, then they will have something to show for it.  But again, anyone that does anything alone out in the desert is taking a great risk.

If it's a matter of clan people not having enough coins, maybe it is just that people in those roles don't know how to make money.  I've seen some clanned people that seem to be very well off.  But for those that don't know how to make a little on the side, maybe clans should offer special tasks for members to earn extra coins (and want to put the time and effort into something to make that extra coin)?

First off, if you're an indept and want to have said structure.... You can have it without ever joining a clan. What do you think the partisan system is supposed to be? Said independent does something for you, you give them something in return. They end up working with your actual employees, make friends, get drunk, have lovers..... Not all independents are ISO.

Would a -partisan- really be an independent?  The act of being a partisan automatically makes them affiliated, and in my book, not an independent.  I guess it depends on how one defines 'independent'.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 12, 2010, 12:49:53 PM
If one defines 'independent' as : "Not part of a contract guaranteeing me food, water, and a posh footlocker where only other clannies can rip me off," then yes, that's pretty much independent in many cases.

Same thing with: Not wearing a uniform, not having access to clan boards, and not being guaranteed extended employment.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: flurry on April 12, 2010, 12:56:06 PM
I find this topic endlessly depressing and frustrating.

Why do people amass absurd, nearly gameworld-contradicting sums of coins? Personally, I think there are two reasons. First, because it gives a sense of accomplishment to some. Second, because it makes the game easier.

Ginormous gobs of coins are not inevitable, even for long-lived characters. Keeping a modest Nenyuk balance is not difficult, in my experience. If there's a need for a guide on how to not accumulate preposterous piles of 'sid, I'd be happy to write it.

Now that I've gotten all that out of the way (and feeling better for it), I'll add that generally I feel that people should play the way they want to play, as long as they're  being true to their characters and staying within the bounds of Zalanthas-realistic behavior.

However, how one person engages with the economy does influence others' experiences with it. As other people have said, jaw-dropping quantities of coins at the disposal of the average Amos devalues coins for everyone. What is a three small bribe worth when some grebber can drop five large without batting an eye?

So where am I going with all this? Personally, I don't mind if independents continue to be able to out-earn clanned folks. However, I'd rather that it were much, much more difficult (by which I mean impossible) to generate the truly massive amounts of coins. I'd be happy to see an end to the Zalanthan archetype of the humble independent who can buy and sell every PC noble.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 12, 2010, 12:58:32 PM
What really is a "disproportionate amount of riches" anyhow?

Maybe a thousand 'sid sounds like a lot, but when kalan fruit cost 40 'sid each, that's only 25 fruit. It won't be that long until the character is hungry again.

If you're drinking and eating in a tavern, it'll last a lot less time than that.

A thousand 'sid? One or two pieces of armor, after fitting. A couple of mounts. Not even a tent.

Characters aren't so rich as they may sound.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 12, 2010, 01:15:30 PM
All of you who want to earn a modest amount of money only, please step to the rear of the running of the mekillots line and let the rest of us get to the front please.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 12, 2010, 01:35:07 PM
I find this topic endlessly depressing and frustrating.

Why do people amass absurd, nearly gameworld-contradicting sums of coins? Personally, I think there are two reasons. First, because it gives a sense of accomplishment to some. Second, because it makes the game easier.

Ginormous gobs of coins are not inevitable, even for long-lived characters. Keeping a modest Nenyuk balance is not difficult, in my experience. If there's a need for a guide on how to not accumulate preposterous piles of 'sid, I'd be happy to write it.

Now that I've gotten all that out of the way (and feeling better for it), I'll add that generally I feel that people should play the way they want to play, as long as they're  being true to their characters and staying within the bounds of Zalanthas-realistic behavior.

However, how one person engages with the economy does influence others' experiences with it. As other people have said, jaw-dropping quantities of coins at the disposal of the average Amos devalues coins for everyone. What is a three small bribe worth when some grebber can drop five large without batting an eye?

So where am I going with all this? Personally, I don't mind if independents continue to be able to out-earn clanned folks. However, I'd rather that it were much, much more difficult (by which I mean impossible) to generate the truly massive amounts of coins. I'd be happy to see an end to the Zalanthan archetype of the humble independent who can buy and sell every PC noble.


I think I love you.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Spider on April 12, 2010, 02:11:08 PM
Yeah, to me most, if not all of the problems in game pertaining to economy, can be fixed by realistic play with our PCs.

Traveling to the end of the Known World and back in a couple of IG days to sell that four hundred sid thing that was grebbed, isn't very realistic.

Taxes and such have never been needed to keep down my PCs financially, they are always broke!

Those who I have seen as rich in game, are those long-lived PCs with many stories to tell about all their jobs and what not. They probably have a large bank account too.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 12, 2010, 02:26:42 PM
The old D&D rules apply here I believe.  Let's take things in perspective for a moment and think.  I believe that the PC base covers maybe what 0.05 - 0.1 % of the total population of the world?

Maybe the figures are wrong, but in D&D, your pc's represent the best of the best, you are the ones fortunate enough to have jobs, smarts, special skills and what have you.  You are NOT the norm, therefore for each rich PC, Grebber or what have you, there are thousands other poor people, it's just like the world we live in now.  I think it's grossly unfair to find fault with the pc's that happen to be very rich because of their efforts.  If there is a problem with a grebber walking the length and breadth of the land to sell that very expensive item, then make travel longer, more obstacles, longer roads.  Let's stop harassing or being upset because there are a few people that can beat the system, we have them in this day and age, we call them Donald Trump, Bill Gates and Warren Buffet.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 12, 2010, 02:38:32 PM
Well not exactly limiting it to the same city but, perhaps, restricting.

If you're from Tuluk and you're in Allanak and need to use the bank, Nenyuk would charge a fee for "transport services." No waiting time, just a fee. It wouldn't even need to be a big fee - 5%-10% of the transaction (ever use those change machines in supermarkets? You put in $400 worth of quarters/dimes/nickels/pennies and they give you $370 in bills).

And a Nakki using the bank in Tuluk would have a fee. Everyone using the bank in Luir's Outpost would have a smaller fee, except for Kuracis and "official citizens" of Luirs (there's a citizen office in the Post, no idea if it's ever been used).

The point of all these ideas is to provide a money sink, because it's too easy to hoarde wealth, and not have any need to spend it, thus devaluing the wealth and all it can buy. You want to know why some of my characters have taken up apartments in every single building in every location where rentals are available? That's why. Because they've been TOO rich and needed something to spend it on. If Nenyuk had skimmed from the account, my characters would've had to be more careful with their spending, AND their earning.
Earn too much, it'll cost ya. Spend too little, it'll cost ya.

Synthesis is right - what he says is how things SHOULD be. But they're not that way. You -cannot- rely on shelling out protection money to the Guild, the rogue magicker, the local temparate, the local police department, and Amos Borsail. In the 3+years I've been playing, I've had to bribe with just one character. With that character, it made sense for her to stuff several pockets. But she searched..actually tried sending word to the different organizations to let them know she had sids and was willing to pay them. The Guild wasn't active. The templar retired. The other templar got killed. The local unaffiliated assassin didn't play when I did. The raiders liked my character and didn't demand sids.

As for the tribal situation yeah..I know the IC story. I also know it isn't spread among every non-city tribe, and every PC belonging to those tribes, nor is it done in a way that allows tribals to HAVE accounts, but simply be required to pay a fee for the privilege. I know all about the incident. It is totally and utterly NOT what I'm talking about.

Nenyuk should be skimming from anyone who is using a branch of their bank in a city they don't belong to, and it should be a legitimate standard policy of Nenyuk to do so.


No no. I would really rather you just not be able to withdraw from your Tuluki account while in Allanak, and vice versa. That would increase the risk of making these large profit drives where folks take a lot of item x from location z and sell it in location y. Being able to leave your coin safely tucked away in your global account while you make the ride home from your latest cash run never sat right with me.

Actually to be honest I think that the economy (and the realism of the game world while we're at it) could be greatly helped if only nobles, templarate, and GMH folk had access to bank accounts to begin with. It'd be a bit more difficult for a homeless indie crafter to amass a ton of wealth if he was forced to carry it all on his back.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Akaramu on April 12, 2010, 03:16:11 PM
Actually to be honest I think that the economy (and the realism of the game world while we're at it) could be greatly helped if only nobles, templarate, and GMH folk had access to bank accounts to begin with. It'd be a bit more difficult for a homeless indie crafter to amass a ton of wealth if he was forced to carry it all on his back.

I'd totally agree with this if it was also easier to rent apartments with DECENT locks that aren't broken into every IG month.

If someone is willing to pay two large a month in rent, they should be able to keep their things reasonably safe, and not even need to use the bank.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 12, 2010, 04:25:09 PM
Actually to be honest I think that the economy (and the realism of the game world while we're at it) could be greatly helped if only nobles, templarate, and GMH folk had access to bank accounts to begin with. It'd be a bit more difficult for a homeless indie crafter to amass a ton of wealth if he was forced to carry it all on his back.

I'd totally agree with this if it was also easier to rent apartments with DECENT locks that aren't broken into every IG month.

If someone is willing to pay two large a month in rent, they should be able to keep their things reasonably safe, and not even need to use the bank.


This precisely.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sephiroto on April 12, 2010, 04:49:08 PM
I think that [a specific IC item] should be harder to sell....  A lot of OOC knowledge is going into profiting from these items.

I like that certain material (wood/obsidian/bone) items sell for less value in certain cities than they used to, because you used to be able to make a killing by simpy buying/reselling to and from NPC's.  There still seem to be a few items that require balance though, but I could be mistaken.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 12, 2010, 05:01:21 PM
If an item is being sold easily in-game for high profit, perhaps posting about it on the board in a specific fashion isn't the best way to address this.  Send me an e-mail and I'll take a look.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sephiroto on April 12, 2010, 05:39:48 PM
Its a broad range of items Nyr, and the fact that common NPC merchants treat them so valuable is silly because, honestly, most NPC's wouldn't realize them for what they are.  Should I still email you on this, or has my point been made?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunkkin on April 12, 2010, 05:53:58 PM
I fully agree with Sephiroto.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 12, 2010, 06:39:41 PM
The only thing I've found in this thread so far that could be damaging to the in-game economy is hyperbole.  You guys should stop listening to your OOC buddies brag about their bank accounts and just play the damn game.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunkkin on April 12, 2010, 07:12:10 PM
You guys should stop listening to your OOC buddies brag about their bank accounts and just play the damn game.

You just won a troll brownie.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: MarshallDFX on April 12, 2010, 07:13:59 PM
Personally, I'm inclined to believe that Synthesis' assessment contains a fair bit of truth.

On the original topic:  It is a bit of a funny moment sometimes, but the poor and powerful clanned characters don't really need to flaunt their (lack of) wealth. I'd think that if the clanned character wants something enough, they can convince a noble of their need and get things done.  All the bonuses to playing clanned have been well talked about, methinks.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 12, 2010, 09:04:06 PM
Part of the problem (if it really is a problem) is a lack of money sinks.

Commoners can't buy land.
Commoners can't build even pitiful mudbrick houses.
Commoners can't set up shops more permanent than an open backpack.
Commoners can't buy slaves or hire NPCs.

I don't see any in-game reason a commoner shouldn't be able to afford a modest home and a couple of NPCs to tend it. There are plenty of NPC commoners that seem that well off. Let's face it, mostly it's not been done for OOC concerns (demand on staff). Maybe with some automation and the designation of a PC or two to run a land office it might be within reason.

People like to suggest taxes, but taxes are just a disincentive to do more than tavern sit, in my opinion. Nevertheless, every now and then (irregularly) the templarate could announce a land/head tax and come around to collect, which could result in some interesting times.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 12, 2010, 09:18:11 PM
Its a broad range of items Nyr, and the fact that common NPC merchants treat them so valuable is silly because, honestly, most NPC's wouldn't realize them for what they are.  Should I still email you on this, or has my point been made?

Yes, e-mail me on it.

edit to add that I'd specifically like to know about which merchants offer these prices.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 13, 2010, 01:20:07 AM
It would be awesome if PC's could hire NPCs to sell those crafts they make at price points they were free to set.  And buying land/buildings that required monthly maintence fees.  With options on lock/security quality, NPC guards hired, etc.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 02:22:20 AM
Actually to be honest I think that the economy (and the realism of the game world while we're at it) could be greatly helped if only nobles, templarate, and GMH folk had access to bank accounts to begin with. It'd be a bit more difficult for a homeless indie crafter to amass a ton of wealth if he was forced to carry it all on his back.

I'd totally agree with this if it was also easier to rent apartments with DECENT locks that aren't broken into every IG month.

If someone is willing to pay two large a month in rent, they should be able to keep their things reasonably safe, and not even need to use the bank.


Sure, staff could likely solve this problem by putting a few NPC guards in the hallways of apartment buildings on patrol and have the price of the rent in that building up'ed to reflect the added security, but I feel like when players complain about apartments needing to be more secure, what they are really saying is they want their apartment to be an impregnable fortress of solititude. Clan storage areas are good for that ... apartments are not.

My take on it is, if you're an unaffilited commoner and you have something super nice like silks and jewlery or an awesome mastercrafted weapon and you really don't want it stolen, you should be carrying it around on your person at all times, because that's about the safest you're going to be able to keep it without the larger safety net of a powerful orginazation.

The relative risk that comes with leaving nice stuff in apartments plus the lack of access to a bank account service would, in my opinion, curb a lot of the worst of the "fabulosly wealthy indie crafters who ruin everyone else's fun because they aren't poor like we want them to be". There just wouldn't be much point in amassing 80k in coins. It'd be too heavy to carry around and leaving it in your apartment would only keep it safe for so long.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 13, 2010, 02:45:40 AM
The relative risk that comes with leaving nice stuff in apartments plus the lack of access to a bank account service would, in my opinion, curb a lot of the worst of the "fabulosly wealthy indie crafters who ruin everyone else's fun because they aren't poor like we want them to be". There just wouldn't be much point in amassing 80k in coins. It'd be too heavy to carry around and leaving it in your apartment would only keep it safe for so long.

So very true.  It would also kinda hurt the burgler profession, but I have no problem with that class scraping by (as they should unless they are one of the elite "templar mansion breaking burglars") assuming everyone's in the same boat.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 13, 2010, 04:13:15 AM
The relative risk that comes with leaving nice stuff in apartments plus the lack of access to a bank account service would, in my opinion, curb a lot of the worst of the "fabulosly wealthy indie crafters who ruin everyone else's fun because they aren't poor like we want them to be". There just wouldn't be much point in amassing 80k in coins. It'd be too heavy to carry around and leaving it in your apartment would only keep it safe for so long.

So very true.  It would also kinda hurt the burgler profession, but I have no problem with that class scraping by (as they should unless they are one of the elite "templar mansion breaking burglars") assuming everyone's in the same boat.

Removing access to bank accounts would just make money even more worthless than it already is.


Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 04:36:54 AM
The relative risk that comes with leaving nice stuff in apartments plus the lack of access to a bank account service would, in my opinion, curb a lot of the worst of the "fabulosly wealthy indie crafters who ruin everyone else's fun because they aren't poor like we want them to be". There just wouldn't be much point in amassing 80k in coins. It'd be too heavy to carry around and leaving it in your apartment would only keep it safe for so long.

So very true.  It would also kinda hurt the burgler profession, but I have no problem with that class scraping by (as they should unless they are one of the elite "templar mansion breaking burglars") assuming everyone's in the same boat.

Removing access to bank accounts would just make money even more worthless than it already is.




I don't believe you. Explain.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 06:10:35 AM
Here, let me try to give you a more detailed explanation of where I'm coming from.

It seems to me that whenever the latest economy thread comes around the exact same things get said over and over again and we always end up right where we started. I think it breaks down like this.

The perceived problem is that the characters who are supposed to be super rich, according to the docs, are in fact super poor; and the characters who are supposed to be super poor, according to the docs, are in fact super rich. Therefore there is a problem in the way the economy is coded and it needs to be changed.

Somebody usually says: Well what if everyone just showed self-restraint and kept their characters poor because they're supposed to be?

This doesn't ever really go anywhere because the honor system, as a rule, becomes less and less effective the more people you pump into it. We're a bit too big of a game for that to be a viable option. On top of that, even if everyone who was supposed to be poor showed self-restraint and kept themselves poor it still wouldn't fix the fact that the ones who are supposed to be super rich, aren't. In this situation, the best you could hope for is that everyone would be poor, except some of the poor folks would have clan compounds and be able to order the city militia around.

The actual root of the problem has to do with resources and how they are gathered. Resources in Armageddon are infinite. You can never strip an entire forest of trees, you can never hunt critters to extinction, and you can never mine the entire vein of obsidian. This means that people with more time on their hands and the inclination to spend it resource farming are going to, by default, amass more resources than those with less time to play.

They are also going to amass more resources than those who are forbidden to go out resource farming themselves due to IC restrictions ... like the fact that they are supposed to be super rich GMH family members, nobles, or templars who are above grebbing in such a fashion.

But the big catch 22 is that making those infinite resources finite instead does not work. It would probably just make the problem worse, in fact. The reason being that making the resources finite just means that the most motivated of the compulsive resource farmers mentioned above are going to take all of the resources when they spawn, leaving none for the folk who come later. This kind of situation can be seen on a small scale already. People camp outside the obsidian mines office in Allanak to be the first there in the morning to clean out the 500 coin a pay limit on obsidian they'll buy, and most of the common "we buy hides and furs and crap" shops are always filled up to the max on whatever hides and furs and crap are readily available in the immediate area. Making the resources finite just turns the economy into more of a WoW type situation where those with the more RL time to pump into the game claim the most reward, and that does nothing to fix the perceived problem of letting the rich be rich, and keeping the poor, poor.

So through the course of the thread, these two points get kicked around in one form or another back and forth until we finally come to a point where somebody says: Well, the GMH's, nobles, and templars, all get special perks and privlieges that coin just can't buy. So that makes it all ok.

It's true that they get special perks commoners can't get, but it does nothing to solve the problem we were actually talking about. Money. They still don't have as much money as the commoners who are supposed to be poor. So give or take a month and another thread on the ecnonomy rears its head because we didn't actually fix anything we just ran around in a circle, decided that the super rich have special perks instead of money, and let it sit for a month before picking the topic back up to run around in a circle with it some more.

Now, I agree that the GMH folk, the nobles, and the templar all have special perks that set them apart from the commoners, and I think that's a good thing. So after reading these economy threads for about a RL year now, my suggestion is actually fairly simple: Make the infrastructure required to amass obscene wealth a special perk of the people who are supposed to have obscene wealth, and just don't give it to the people who are supposed to be poor.

In order for the resource harvesting indie commoners that are always targeted in these threads to amass wealth, they need to have the infrastructure in place to allow them to do it. They either need a bank, or a super secure location to put the wealth in, otherwise their wealth is limited by what they can physically drag around with them.

Imagine for a moment if you will, a world in which the banks only deal with GMH family members, nobility, templarate, and the VERY rare commoner who has climbed their way up from the bottom to the highest reaches of society.

Commoners can still make money at the pace they can make it now, so the time required to amass x amount of coins doesn't change from what it is now, hence the person't style of play doesn't have to change either. What does change is how much coin they would want to make before stopping.

People would have to live more hand to mouth. They could still rent an apartment but they would be more inclined to go out and make this month's rent just before it's due, spending it almost immediately after aquiring it. People could still carry a few large around on their person to stay ahead of the rat race a little bit but anything more than that and weight and space issues would start to arise.

People might be tempted to spend more money, since holding onto it is less of an option than it used to be, and the thieves who break into apartments might even be less tempted to clean the whole place out now, because they don't have access to banks either. They can't go sell everything in an apartment and then carry their 22k to the bank for deposit, so they as well might have to change their style of play to a more hand in mouth routine ... ... unless they were part of a huge criminal syndicate with clan storage rooms to leave this huge amount of money inside. Now, all of a sudden, paying the local guild bosses of your city state protection money to keep your apartment from being completely cleaned out takes on a more tangible signifigance.

In a situation like this, the compulsive resource farmers might even, I dare say, be tempted to seek out the super rich for employment in exchange for being taken care of. They can't have a big whooping bank account of their own, but they can give the silly amount of coins they make to a noble or templar with the understanding that when they need something like new armor, money for a bribe, weapons, booze, spice, whores ... their patron will make sure they get enough of that money they gave them back, in order to pay for it.

This is where I'm coming from when I say that maybe taking bank accounts away from common nobody PC's would be a good thing for the game's economy.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Grey Area on April 13, 2010, 06:24:34 AM
Imagine for a moment if you will, a world in which the banks only deal with GMH family members, nobility, templarate, and the VERY rare commoner who has climbed their way up from the bottom to the highest reaches of society.

This is actually a pretty good idea.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 13, 2010, 07:05:51 AM
Aside from some other, very drastic changes that aren't likely to happen in Arm 1, I really can't think of a better solution than what musashi has proposed above.  It would be simple to implement, and really, as he points out, does a good job of regulating itself.  Also, as he points out, honor systems rarely work out as a game gets larger, even in RPIs.  Armageddon MUD already relies heavily on these, in comparison to other MUDs in the same classification, so a coded solution like this really does seem like a step in the right direction.

Masterfully done, musashi.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sephiroto on April 13, 2010, 07:14:28 AM
I just had the following thought:

Average GMH salary: 300-700 coins/month.
Obsidian miner who -averages- 1 large chunk per IC day: ~11500 coins/month.
Obsidian miner who -averages- 1 small chunk per IC day: ~2250 coins/month.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 13, 2010, 07:20:21 AM
I just had the following thought:

Average GMH salary: 300-700 coins/month.
Obsidian miner who -averages- 1 large chunk per IC day: ~11500 coins/month.
Obsidian miner who -averages- 1 small chunk per IC day: ~2250 coins/month.

Ah, but are you factoring in food and water costs?  What about times when the player isn't logged in to hack at deposits?  I'm not saying that mining is by any means a profession with a low profit yield (in fact, the opposite is true), I'm just pointing out that there's hidden factors that detract from one's net profit, and make those numbers a little less sickeningly HUGE on the miner's side of things.

Still, this would make most clanned PCs cry, if they heard it.  Thank Tek/Muk most Zalanthans aren't bean counters, right?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 13, 2010, 08:19:24 AM
Average GMH's salary is what it is, regardless of what the PC is doing. (supporting a RP/Code hybrid environment)

The only way a miner can earn that much, is if he spends all his time mining (supporting a code only environment)

I like Musashi's idea. If Clan leaders (not necessarily family members but whoever is responsible for paying employees, paying bribes, buying rounds at the bar, acquiring more plants for their Lord Noble's experiments, etc.)...had access to bank accounts and no one else did it could certainly help.

The #1 concern though with this, is that it would also encourage PCs to clutter up barracks that already have no room for more. My solution to THAT..would be a new command and object. A *trash bin* object. That allows you to pick up a bag full of stuff and pour it in the trash bin, where it becomes auto-junked. Add an echo of slaves taking it out and replacing it with an empty one if anyone has an immersion issue, but I'd definitely like to see that included in a situation in which people who are -already- stockpiling things in clan halls, will now have even more of a reason to do so.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 13, 2010, 08:21:13 AM
Thanks to those of you that sent me e-mails.  We can't make the economy of Armageddon perfect, but I think that I can at least improve these things with some small tweaks.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Niamh on April 13, 2010, 08:47:14 AM
Quote
You can never strip an entire forest of trees, you can never hunt critters to extinction, and you can never mine the entire vein of obsidian.

This is not true.  Deposits are finite.  If staff finds that excessive logging is taking place somewhere, they will make the world react accordingly, and people who frequent that spot will find that there are less and less trees, then eventually none if the amount of trees taken from there isn't curbed.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 13, 2010, 09:01:46 AM
Quote
You can never strip an entire forest of trees, you can never hunt critters to extinction, and you can never mine the entire vein of obsidian.

This is not true.  Deposits are finite.  If staff finds that excessive logging is taking place somewhere, they will make the world react accordingly, and people who frequent that spot will find that there are less and less trees, then eventually none if the amount of trees taken from there isn't curbed.

Bold for emphasis. Niamh, the main thrust of this thread is that all "balance" to the economy currently relies on players and staff to monitor and/or self-monitor, and that the code does not support said balance. Yes, IF the staff finds problems, they can fix them. But until/unless the staff notices a problem, the problem remains. These things -are- infinite. They're coded that way. To remove the ability to mine in a certain room, a staffer has to make it that way. Until the staffer steps in, it -is- infinite, or, infinitely renewable via game reset. The world doesn't react accordingly. The staff has to intervene. We're trying to come up with a way that prevents the need for staff intervention, or prevents the frustration we already have, because when we ask for staff intervention, the staff needed to intervene, isn't available at the moment and by the time they are available, PCs Amos, Malik, and Talia have already spent 20 hours each logging 2 forests worth of trees from a single room and spam-crafted them into 1000-sid boxes.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sephiroto on April 13, 2010, 09:06:25 AM
Ah, but are you factoring in food and water costs?  What about times when the player isn't logged in to hack at deposits?  I'm not saying that mining is by any means a profession with a low profit yield (in fact, the opposite is true), I'm just pointing out that there's hidden factors that detract from one's net profit, and make those numbers a little less sickeningly HUGE on the miner's side of things.

Still, this would make most clanned PCs cry, if they heard it.  Thank Tek/Muk most Zalanthans aren't bean counters, right?

Indeed, Aaron.  That statement was to be thought provoking, that's all.

Your average 'sid miner isn't goign to make that much money because they're not going to mine every day and the merchants only buy so much product during any given period.  But the point is, any PC can make a KILLING if two conditions are met.  1) Be proactive and productive and 2) Stay alive.

Most of us don't play degenerates.  We play hard workers and we make lots of coins.  Disporportionate amounts..., especially when not restricted by clan rules.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 09:13:29 AM
What Lizzie said. Yes of course staff have the ability to change the world around but no offense, that hasn't really been an effective enough measure to change the perceived problem of, the folks who are supposed to be rich being poor, and the folks who are supposed to be poor being rich -- because this thread keeps coming up month after month and it always hashes out the same complaints, like I mentoned before.

Since staff are just people with a finite amount of time to dedicate to the game like the rest of us, I don't feel like asking them to follow resource farmers around to micro manage their grebbing practices by changing the world around behind them is the way to go about trying to fix things.

And even if staff DID do that for every grebber 100% of the time ... we would just end up in the same situation I mentioned above, where those with the time and inclination to go resource farming strip an area clean and nothing is left for the more casual players.

I think it's been pretty blatantly observed that making the resources finite in any sense is not the way to fix the problem, only the way to aggrevate it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 13, 2010, 09:17:01 AM
I still like musashi's proposed change to the banking system, for the record.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 13, 2010, 10:58:14 AM
SOOOO, what we are accomplishing from this thread is to help screw burglars and prevent people from selling items to npc shopkeepers that REALLY REALLY REALLY like them.  Congrats to whoever likes to do this.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 13, 2010, 10:59:42 AM
If you forced people to carry all their coins around in their backpack, every raiding scenario would impose a catastrophic loss on the PC, leading to more people simply running before the scenario could begin.

Indies would rarely be able to hire the Byn for contracts, and they wouldn't need to anyway, because the excess coin generated by such contracts currently would only be a hindrance under the new system.  There goes a significant amount of money and interaction for the Byn.  Independent crafters would stop selling the cool shit that PCs want and just get by hand-to-mouth by crafting forks and spoons and bullshit that nobody buys, because what's the point of crafting a cool silk dress that some rich Oashi aide might wear, when you can't really -do- anything with that extra 500 'sid?  I'd go so far as to say the independent merchant would completely vanish, because the ONLY thing the merchant class is good at is amassing incredible amounts of coins and using it to pay people to do everything else for them.

Your local criminal elements would suddenly find themselves without loot-laden PCs to shake down, and the trick-down economies in the 'rinth and desert-raiding communities would simply dry up.  Newbie grebbers who actually greb shit for indie crafters who don't want to spend the time doing it themselves would no longer have job opportunities, because again:  what's the point of paying someone to go out and greb obsidian shards that you can ultimately make hundreds of 'sid on when that hundreds of 'sid is just going to weigh you down and make you a target? 

I think the suggestions musashi presents are a great way to fix the problem of the rich-being-poor and the poor-being-rich, but they're also a great way to ruin the game in the process.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 13, 2010, 11:11:03 AM
Well put, Synthesis.

I think too much emphasis is being put on the raw amount of coin people have.

Indies will never be as good as clannies. You can NEVER buy and sell a noble. Some of the hyperbole used is so... ridiculous. With a static caste system, it doesn't matter for shit if you had 10 BILLION sid, you'll never be as good as that noble. You'll never be as good as your shit-poor clannie equivalent. Because they are, simply put, better than you. You have money to throw around, sure, but you don't have an entire merchant/noble house at your back if you fuck up... or to keep people from fucking you up.

Sure, it's not perfect, it never was meant to be perfect. Unless all you people who like to play hard-working pcs want to play hardworking pcs who still die in the streets all the time because of hunger and thirst. Let's face it, you want to make people realistically poor, let's do this. No starting coin. No starting food. No starting water. Make salting pay one sid/piece, make mining pay 1/10th of what it does now.

Congrats. See how shitty it feels to run into the same brick wall over and over, killing ALL fun for the sake of realism? But hey, at least we're all starving now. Because, you know, we should all be shit-poor, right?

/end snark / sarcasm.

No, but seriously. Yes there is a conflict in (COIN ALONE) coin made between the documentation and game reality. BUT, after all these years, it's helped shape a lot of aspects of the game. There's a reason why Synth's post is so well written... It makes indies literally the very BOTTOM of the food chain. Which is true. But if you fuck with them too much, it's going to collapse the whole thing.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Schrodingers Cat on April 13, 2010, 11:14:12 AM
What if 'normal' character bank accounts had a top limit of a thousand coins?  But other important establishment people had unlimited bank capacities?  I think that would make things much more manageable.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 13, 2010, 11:19:17 AM
SOOOOOOO, options:

1.  Increase GMH pay
2.  Screw all indies

Let's take a vote.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 13, 2010, 11:24:03 AM
One thing I think would fix things would be to simply increase the pay to family members of gmhs/nobility. Something like 5 small/week (IG week) for gmh people, and 1k/IG week for nobles.

Because, truthfully, it's really NOT that the GMHs/nobility are poor.

It's that they have so many things that the coins need to go to that they go quickly.

They actually have a RATHER substantial amount of coin.

But if they made a LOT more, they could just throw it around like it was no object, like for example... nobles being trendy enough to keep up the newest fashion and still having tons of sid to buy templars, pay aides, be kickass.

As to GMH employees and noble house employees: Your pc superiors now have tons of sid to throw around. So if you do well, you will, too.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 13, 2010, 11:35:41 AM
Here's what I have seen.  I have had a character that amassed so much dam sid that he didn't know what to do with it.  I had EVERYTHING and i do mean EVERYTHING, silt skimmers and the like and could do just about what he wanted.  HOWEVER, that gets boring and old REALLY fast.  Believe you me, it's just NOT worth it to acquire all that wealth with nothing to spend it on.  There are too many limitations on the game right now to make that much money worth it.  I would not recommend it to anyone.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 13, 2010, 11:43:46 AM
I think people are taking this to an extreme with regards to the impact.

1. Storing coin/raw materials in your apartment is always an option.  This creates an opportunity for burglars, not a detriment.

2. If people are concerned about losing all of their profits in a raid, they might have more reason to hire the Byn.  This creates Byn interaction, not detracts from it.

3. Again, independent merchants can lighten their burden by storing raw materials or coin in their homes.  Coin is heavy, but not so heavy that 10,000 is impossible to carry.

Something I've noticed in my nine years of play here is that people are more inclined to do everything themselves and hoard than pay people to do things for them.  Perhaps a revised banking system would actually encourage people to invest their coin instead of sit on it?

That being said, there are alternatives:

1. Increase House pay.  If you do the math, even a mid-level Noble House employee can't afford to buy an ale at the Gaj every evening without supplemental income.

2. Keep banks open, but charge a percentage-based interest on non-House employee accounts.  It wouldn't make much sense to put an upper limit on accounts (ICly, that's lost profits for Nenyuk), but they would benefit greatly from charging interest/bank fees in exchange for keeping your coin safe from theft.  If you have a small account, the fees are negligable on a monthly basis, but if you have a hundred thousand 'sid stashed away, it could cost close to a thousand 'sid.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Cutthroat on April 13, 2010, 11:55:40 AM
To me, the problem isn't that independent commoners can control GMH family/nobles/templars with massive amounts of money. They can't. Imagine what would happen if GMH member/noble/templar began to question where the money came from (and if responsible players are behind them, they likely would).

The problem to me is that money-hoarding generally discourages one or more of these things: interaction, playing realistically, playing in line with the documentation. Unless, of course, it's done responsibly. And I feel most players are generally pretty responsible about what they do. I don't think limiting bank accounts to 0 or 1000 or anything will fix that. I think a flat interest rate on accounts is a lot better. I like the idea of Nenyuk banks not being international - you shouldn't be able to access the money you deposited in Tuluk, in Allanak. In the long run, this forces people to carry money with them on trips. I think that's pretty good. Rich independents can keep easily involving people to protect them.

Anything that limits a need for an infinite money source is good. The more money that gets exchanged between players, the better. An interesting consideration is to make the resources gained from coded jobs more useful to players.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 13, 2010, 11:56:40 AM
Aaron that was why I thought the idea of bank fees was a good one. If you aren't willing to carry your sids around when you travel, then you should have to pay for the privilege. So a Borsail sneaking up to Tuluk to talk with his sekrit spy pal and give him 1000 sids to whack Agent Kurac, should be charged a fee for withdrawing from the Tuluk branch of Nenyuk. And that Lirathan spy going to Allanak to pay off the gemmer for doing unspeakable things to his bardic enemy last Nekrete? Gonna cost him to withdraw from the Nakki branch of the bank.

OR, they could risk being robbed, and carry the sids on them. OR, they could hire the Byn to escort them and keep them safe.

I think this opens up more opportunities (or reminding everyone of opportunities that are rarely used) than it limits.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 12:37:31 PM
This is really long again. Sorry.

SOOOO, what we are accomplishing from this thread is to help screw burglars and prevent people from selling items to npc shopkeepers that REALLY REALLY REALLY like them.  Congrats to whoever likes to do this.

I'm assuming you're referring to what I suggested here, if you weren't sorry. But please explain how you have somehow inferred that burglars would be screwed, or how npc shopkeepers would not want to buy items from PC's ... from anything I had written above? The point I was making in my post was that we should not, in fact, change shopkeeper NPCs, or make things harder for burglars. I was suggesting changing something else entirely that is not connected to either of those two issues, but would indirectly moderate the amount of wealth a commoner could amass.

If anything, it would mean that burglars would be inclined to only skim off the apartments they break into (meaning less we hate burglars because they clean out our apartments and that's unrealistic threads), making life easier on them both IC'ly and OOC'ly since there would be less IC and OOC witch hunts on them for doing what their class is made to do. Living hand to mouth would mean that it would make more sense for a burglar to break into apartments more often, but to only snag the off thing he needs in order to get himself through the next month or so, and that people would be less likely to go completely beserk over it when it happens. I don't see how that screws over burglars. Please explain yourself.

And I never mentioned anything about regulating how much NPC shopkeepers buy. I don't even know where you got that one from. Though again, if anything ... having people be encouraged to live hand to mouth and only sell what they need to sell in order to get this month's rent paid would mean that shops wouldn't be filled to max on everything they buy nearly as often. Which means more PC's could sell to them. Which is ... the opposite of what you're trying to say would happen.

If you forced people to carry all their coins around in their backpack, every raiding scenario would impose a catastrophic loss on the PC, leading to more people simply running before the scenario could begin.

No, it actually would not. Because they wouldn't be carrying around 80k in their backpack, they would be carrying around a few large at best, which is easy to make again doing the same grebbing they were doing before. That's one of the nicer things about living hand to mouth, when you haven't climbed as high up, you don't have as far to fall.

And unless the raiding group was a big organized clan in and of themselves with a storage place to put this massive amount of coins they could in theory shake the whole game world down for, they have the same problem that the person carrying the coin in their backpack has. They might be inclined to only shake people down for what they need to make ends meet this month, and then just do it again the next time they need some more coin.

But honestly, raiding is not a career path in armageddon. Not like burglars who can actually burgle on a regular basis to pay their way through the game. Raiders have to have side jobs to generate coin on their own, and really only raid as a flavor role, so I doubt if raiding would be impacted enough to notice any change in it at all. I call red herring on this one.

Indies would rarely be able to hire the Byn for contracts, and they wouldn't need to anyway, because the excess coin generated by such contracts currently would only be a hindrance under the new system.  There goes a significant amount of money and interaction for the Byn.

I don't really agree with this logic either, because the indie money makers of the here and now don't really hire the Byn on a regular basis for profit runs worth tens of thousands of 'sid anyway. Most of the interaction and contracts I have seen the Byn get come from other clans and the local templarate. But even assuming that indies did, just for the sake of arguement, a change like this would not mean that they wouldn't be in a position to hire the Byn, it would mean that they just have to have a plan for what to do with that money they were going to make off the run beyond tossing it in an secure location to collect dust. Maybe they're bribing a templar and need a few extra large to put in the blue robe's pocket. Or maybe they just ordered 15k worth of nice stuff from a GMH and now they need to make some serious money to pay that off before the merchant gets back to them to let them know the order is ready.

In fact, given that the Byn is a large clan with a clan bank account of its own, the Byn could see even more interaction as PC's might contract the Byn to not only escourt them when they go to make their money, but to also hold onto, protect, and ultimently transfer that money to the person they are wanting to pay, for a fee of course.

So, I call red herring again.

  Independent crafters would stop selling the cool shit that PCs want and just get by hand-to-mouth by crafting forks and spoons and bullshit that nobody buys, because what's the point of crafting a cool silk dress that some rich Oashi aide might wear, when you can't really -do- anything with that extra 500 'sid?  I'd go so far as to say the independent merchant would completely vanish, because the ONLY thing the merchant class is good at is amassing incredible amounts of coins and using it to pay people to do everything else for them.

Ok so first, I believe you yourself were the one who said that the indie crafters making silly amounts of money were not merchants, but usually warriors/rangers with a crafting subclass. So which is it?

But lets just assume that they're all indie merchants, again, just for the sake of arguement. Is 500 extra sid really so heavy that it won't fit in a backpack? And really so massive an amount of coin that it won't say ... ... be ENTIRELY spent paying 1 IG month's worth of rent on an apartment? I'm sorry, but I feel like you are really, seriously reaching for the slippery slope logic here. I don't see a very strong connection between PC to PC sales and the change I was suggesting. Most of the time when PC's make deals with one another it's seldom for coin anyway, and more for favors and, as you yourself put it, getting people to do everything else for them.

Sure they might sell forks and spoons to make ends meet when there are no PC's around to sell stuff to, but they do that already. The idea that the merchant guild would just disappear outside of clanned employees is just bogus dude, sorry.

Your local criminal elements would suddenly find themselves without loot-laden PCs to shake down, and the trick-down economies in the 'rinth and desert-raiding communities would simply dry up.  Newbie grebbers who actually greb shit for indie crafters who don't want to spend the time doing it themselves would no longer have job opportunities, because again:  what's the point of paying someone to go out and greb obsidian shards that you can ultimately make hundreds of 'sid on when that hundreds of 'sid is just going to weigh you down and make you a target? 

I think the suggestions musashi presents are a great way to fix the problem of the rich-being-poor and the poor-being-rich, but they're also a great way to ruin the game in the process.

Local criminal elements do not engage in shaking down loot-laden PC's as things currently stand anyway. Not as their regular "this is how we make our staple income" routine at any rate. When it happens, much like desert raiding, it's flavor. It's not the stable, reliable thing that robbing apartments is. What this would do is allow for large criminal syndicates, as I said in my post above, to run a very smooth protection racket however, which is more in line with what large criminal syndicates in the real world actually do anyway when it comes to small time marks like local independant businesses.

To be honest, Synth, your entire post seems like you're taking things that in actuality, don't really happen too often now outside of opportunistic chance meetings, pretending like they're the life blood for large groups of people, and then further pretending like being limited to about 3-6k worth of coins at any given time (500 coins is NOT heavy, 3k is not heavy, poor strength humans can carry this and not be weighted down) will somehow make all of that dry up and disappear.

People would still be able to rent apartments. People would still be able to employ other people, people would still be able to amass the coins they needed to amass. The only thing that would change is that there would be no -point- in amassing wealth gargantian sums of money (in the 20k+ range) unless you had something to spend it on in the near future. Like employees in the indie grebber indie crafter situation you tried to claim would be ruined.

It wouldn't be ruined, it would be enriched. But it would hinge on interaction and getting other PC's involved. An indie merchant hiring on large groups of people would have all the reason in the world to want to make large sums of money. He has to pay those people so they can pay their rent, so they can buy gear. He has to pay the local guild to keep his apartment where the majority of his profits are held safe from being cleaned out entirely by people who (because they are clanned) could actually steal all his stuff and have a place to put it when they're done. If he's employing enough people and making enough money that he's getting into the ZOMG profit range, then he needs to start paying templarate and courting the banks to show that he's a profitable enough business enterprise to be worth giving an account to.

This would give indie merchants a new goal to strive towards, and plenty of interaction with all sorts of colorful characters along the way. I just don't see anything getting ruined by making it so that the only people in game with 120k in the bank are the people who are supposed to be stinking rich, and claiming that if commoners can not out-bid a templar on contracts/bribes to the byn/raiders/street muggers the game comes to an end strikes me as doomsday soothsaying, and not much more than that.

Well put, Synthesis.

I think too much emphasis is being put on the raw amount of coin people have.

Indies will never be as good as clannies. You can NEVER buy and sell a noble. Some of the hyperbole used is so... ridiculous. With a static caste system, it doesn't matter for shit if you had 10 BILLION sid, you'll never be as good as that noble. You'll never be as good as your shit-poor clannie equivalent. Because they are, simply put, better than you. You have money to throw around, sure, but you don't have an entire merchant/noble house at your back if you fuck up... or to keep people from fucking you up.

Sure, it's not perfect, it never was meant to be perfect. Unless all you people who like to play hard-working pcs want to play hardworking pcs who still die in the streets all the time because of hunger and thirst. Let's face it, you want to make people realistically poor, let's do this. No starting coin. No starting food. No starting water. Make salting pay one sid/piece, make mining pay 1/10th of what it does now.

Congrats. See how shitty it feels to run into the same brick wall over and over, killing ALL fun for the sake of realism? But hey, at least we're all starving now. Because, you know, we should all be shit-poor, right?

/end snark / sarcasm.

No, but seriously. Yes there is a conflict in (COIN ALONE) coin made between the documentation and game reality. BUT, after all these years, it's helped shape a lot of aspects of the game. There's a reason why Synth's post is so well written... It makes indies literally the very BOTTOM of the food chain. Which is true. But if you fuck with them too much, it's going to collapse the whole thing.

This is an example of what I said above in my first post. Where someone comes along and says: Ok yes, the super rich aren't really rich, and the poor are actually dripping in 'sid, but the super rich have perks, so that makes it all ok, right?

All this line of thinking has appeared to acomplish in the past year or so (and likely further back) is to give us about a month's break before a new economy thread gets stirred up with the exact same complaints. Because while it is very true that nobles, templars, and GMH people have perks commoners don't have ... we are not talking about those perks. We are talking about money. And how the problem is, templars, nobles, and GMH people should have more of it than commoners, but typically don't.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 13, 2010, 01:15:28 PM
Actually Musashi, I was condensing the ENTIRE thread, not trying to target everyone in general.

What bothers me about most of these threads is that people come on and try to find ways to make the game less enjoyable for others because it doesn't fit THEIR idea of realism and Roleplay.

This is not aimed at you, but overall, I say this from reading numerous threads from over a year.

Just my $0.02.  Check out the old threads.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 01:26:00 PM
Ah. I'm inclined to agree with you in that I don't like it either when people come and start playing self appointed RP police, though I've been guilty of it myself in my newbie days  :( Oi, I'm still embarissed about that what makes a good hunter thread. As I recall I seriously showed my ass in that one.

But what I am trying to point out in the posts I'm making here is that there are other effective options to persue besides yelling at people to "RP better" or calling for the money grind to become even more of a money grind.

I don't like either of those avenues of thought, and I thought that maybe a different perspective would be nice. Because I have looked at the old threads, and I know that it's always the same complaints and counter complaints getting tossed around until someone finally throws out the "perks" trump card. So I'm just injecting a new idea.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 13, 2010, 01:40:58 PM
I'm a bit shocked to hear that some nobles receive only 1 large a month. One large? That's what, five goblets of wine in the Trader's Inn and then they're broke for an entire month?

They definitely need a larger stipend that that.

Maybe if nobles were more useful to commoners (by means of exercising their influence to benefit the commoner in a -tangible- way), there would be a lot of bribe money flowing into their pockets.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 13, 2010, 01:50:03 PM
@Musashi, I completely agree with you, but with much fewer words.

In the words of the immortal ianmartin:   'Yeah, What he said'
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Malken on April 13, 2010, 01:53:24 PM
I'm a bit shocked to hear that some nobles receive only 1 large a month. One large? That's what, five goblets of wine in the Trader's Inn and then they're broke for an entire month?

They definitely need a larger stipend that that.

Maybe if nobles were more useful to commoners (by means of exercising their influence to benefit the commoner in a -tangible- way), there would be a lot of bribe money flowing into their pockets.


Nobles are crazy useful to commoners in -tangible- ways, and only the laziest of nobles would just live on their monthly stipend only.

What the hell, dude?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 13, 2010, 01:58:18 PM
In much the same way, only the laziest of GMH employees would subsist solely on their monthly salary.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 13, 2010, 02:14:02 PM
In much the same way, only the laziest of GMH employees would subsist solely on their monthly salary.

I don't believe that's true. There's plenty of GMH employees that would be doing other things then making coin.  The RP of a character may full circulate around working very hard for the GMH without making more coin. I can picture a wagon pilot, a guard and even an Agent who spends all his time doing his job and not seeking out coin.
 
I think it's pretty sad when most concepts of characters include the "get rich" thing.  RP is far more rich that that.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 13, 2010, 02:15:20 PM
I'm a bit shocked to hear that some nobles receive only 1 large a month. One large? That's what, five goblets of wine in the Trader's Inn and then they're broke for an entire month?

They definitely need a larger stipend that that.

Maybe if nobles were more useful to commoners (by means of exercising their influence to benefit the commoner in a -tangible- way), there would be a lot of bribe money flowing into their pockets.

The last time I played a noble (albeit many years ago) The stipend was 10k a month.  We were, of course paying salaries out of that, back then.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 13, 2010, 02:48:33 PM
I'm equally surprised at some of these noble payment numbers.  I heartily suggest that the scurvy thieves return them to the previous owner's behind, because no noble (north or south) has been paid only 1 large per IC month as a recurring stipend, nor do I see any suggestion in any post in this thread that this is the case (yet it is being established as a baseline for some of the posts here).
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 13, 2010, 02:53:52 PM
Pretty much... I didn't mean anything about speculating what it is now. I can't imagine any one player has played in every noble house to speculate on all of their salaries. I was making a proposal for what to possibly change it to, not what it was. Sorry if it may have read in a way that other people have managed to get the other thing from it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 13, 2010, 03:07:22 PM
It could also be that I misinterpreted verb tenses for the subsequent posts.  It's not a big deal at all, I was just clarifying so that player debate or discussion can focus on substantial items.  :)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Ghost on April 13, 2010, 03:16:20 PM
actually nevermind
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 13, 2010, 03:46:11 PM
In much the same way, only the laziest of GMH employees would subsist solely on their monthly salary.

I don't believe that's true. There's plenty of GMH employees that would be doing other things then making coin.  The RP of a character may full circulate around working very hard for the GMH without making more coin. I can picture a wagon pilot, a guard and even an Agent who spends all his time doing his job and not seeking out coin.
 
I think it's pretty sad when most concepts of characters include the "get rich" thing.  RP is far more rich that that.

What I meant to say was, "If you are employed by a GMH and you want to make extra money, it is easy. Ergo, if you are not making extra money and you are employed by a GMH and you want to make extra money, you probably aren't trying hard enough or you are a newb who hasn't yet learned the ropes."  But that seemed a little too much like freshman logic.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on April 13, 2010, 04:21:28 PM
I love Musa's idea about the banking system.

It solves the INDIES RICH/NOBLES POOOOR! problem.

It provides raiders with juicier targets.

It gives indies more incentive to hire the Byn to fight off said raiders....

And some more awesome stuff I probably just haven't thought up.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 13, 2010, 04:31:46 PM
I don't think that anyone working for a GMH/noble should have to do secondary work to supplement their income.  I don't think anyone working for a GMH/noble should do secondary work to supplement their income.  (By 'noble' I mean actual employment, not patronage.)  I had a character hunted down and killed, and part of the reason for it was work on the side, by my character's employer once.  I miss those days.

I think that indies can make a lot of money and that clanned people don't make as much, true, but I think there is a way to fix it besides suggesting that people that have what is supposed to be a cushy job have to have a second job (putting it into modern terms) just to compete with the world around them.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: jstorrie on April 13, 2010, 04:48:02 PM
In much the same way, only the laziest of GMH employees would subsist solely on their monthly salary.

The laziest of GMH employees subsist on their predecessor's post-humous loot.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunkkin on April 13, 2010, 04:53:06 PM
The laziest of GMH employees subsist on their predecessor's post-humous loot.

You have entered the world for the first time!

> change objective Become the richest Agent EVAH!

Your have changed your objective.

> l couch

You see a goldmine piled here, along with silver weapons.

> l nightstand

You see three thousand silk umbrellas here.

> l platter

You see a couch on the platter.  The couch is covered with a second gold mine.

> think Huh.

You think, "Huh."

> change objective Find a way to spend all this.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Akaramu on April 13, 2010, 05:14:05 PM
I think this point has been raised before, but...

None of my PCs, indies included, ever had more than 5000 'sid at a time, and all of them except one were long lived. Maybe people just focus on making coins too much? I don't know. My PCs get very bored of grebbing if they have to do it more than twice or so per real life day. It's not a very fun activity... why waste your life away amassing 90'000 sid if you could just sit back and actually enjoy the coins? Buy booze, buy whores, buy decent food, throw parties with your friends.

Edit to add: While I don't think the bank limitation idea is a bad one... please don't punish the players of characters who like to party rather than go greb every single day of their virtual life. It's nice to be able to store those 2000 sid away for when you have a templar at your throat.

Or offer coins to some random newbs and start plots.

I'd write more but I'm sleepy.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 13, 2010, 05:15:07 PM
I think this point has been raised before, but...

None of my PCs, indies included, ever had more than 5000 'sid at a time, and all of them except one were long lived. Maybe people just focus on making coins too much? I don't know. My PCs get very bored of grebbing if they have to do it more than twice or so per real life day. It's not a very fun activity... why waste your life away amassing 90'000 sid if you could just sit back and actually enjoy the coins? Buy booze, buy whores, buy decent food, throw parties with your friends.

Or offer coins to some random newbs and start plots.

I'd write more but I'm sleepy.


This.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Vanth on April 13, 2010, 05:17:26 PM
As is often the case, the heart of this issue was (IMO) captured in a nutshell on the first page of the thread:

the average Armer who spends 2 hours a day playing, and actually spends time with their family on weekends, isn't likely to amass the magnitude of wealth as someone who can play from work, plus plays at night, and plays on weekends, 5-8 hours every RL day.

The schism between clannie and independent only becomes wide for high-playtime players. 

If Salarri Hunter Amos and Independent Hunter Malik both play 10 hours a week (2 a day, 5 days a week), they probably make about the same amount of 'sid, but Amos has a better deal because of clan perks.

If Amos and Malik are both on 40 hours a week (and yes, quite a few of you play that much), then Malik is much, much more wealthy, because he is making money per RL time period rather than per Zalanthan time period.

It's really impossible to balance for this OOC factor in the IC economy.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 13, 2010, 05:19:24 PM
I don't think that anyone working for a GMH/noble should have to do secondary work to supplement their income.  I don't think anyone working for a GMH/noble should do secondary work to supplement their income.  (By 'noble' I mean actual employment, not patronage.)  I had a character hunted down and killed, and part of the reason for it was work on the side, by my character's employer once.  I miss those days.

I think that indies can make a lot of money and that clanned people don't make as much, true, but I think there is a way to fix it besides suggesting that people that have what is supposed to be a cushy job have to have a second job (putting it into modern terms) just to compete with the world around them.

I never thought I'd say this, but I agree with spawnloser.  Employees of a Noble House or Great Merchant House, especially those who are sworn in for life, should not have to resort to alternative sources of income.  Still, I feel that this is the current state of things.

This applies especially to grebbing, which should, by all accounts I've heard, be considered beneath most house employees.  Hunters and gatherers for the Great Merchant Houses are an exception, of course, but if they are left to provide their own supplemental income by gathering the same materials their employers need, it creates a conflict of interest, which is also a problem.

And, for the record, I still support the restriction of bank use to members of Noble Houses and Great Merchant Houses only.  One concern that was raised by someone (I forget who) is that coins get too weighty to carry around in large sums.  If this is indeed the case (and I'm still not convinced that it is), the staff should easily be able to modify currency weight to balance things a little.  This could even be justified in-game by the introduction of a new denomination of obsidian coin.

Musashi's proposed solution may not be the fix-all everyone is hoping for, but it does seem to fix a lot of issues with very little code modification.  We've proven time and time again by the frequent occurrence of these "broken economy" threads that pretending the problem doesn't exist and asking everyone to play around it simply doesn't work.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 13, 2010, 05:32:25 PM
It's really impossible to balance for this OOC factor in the IC economy.

You may be right on that point.  The restricted bank privileges that were suggested, however, hurt neither the casual independent player or the casual clanned player; in fact, it has little to no effect on either.  What it does do is help create a self-regulating system for the more hardcore players, where the disparity lies.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 05:49:02 PM
I think this point has been raised before, but...

None of my PCs, indies included, ever had more than 5000 'sid at a time, and all of them except one were long lived. Maybe people just focus on making coins too much? I don't know. My PCs get very bored of grebbing if they have to do it more than twice or so per real life day. It's not a very fun activity... why waste your life away amassing 90'000 sid if you could just sit back and actually enjoy the coins? Buy booze, buy whores, buy decent food, throw parties with your friends.

Edit to add: While I don't think the bank limitation idea is a bad one... please don't punish the players of characters who like to party rather than go greb every single day of their virtual life. It's nice to be able to store those 2000 sid away for when you have a templar at your throat.

Or offer coins to some random newbs and start plots.

I'd write more but I'm sleepy.


2000 coins will easily fit inside a backpack without weighing down a character with poor strength. The bank idea proposed would not affect the type of character you describe, aside from the fact that they would have the coins on their person instead of in their account.

I was going to reply to Vanth as well, but AG beat me to it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 13, 2010, 06:01:54 PM
Musashi's posts have convinced me that his is the voice of reason. Or uh - text of reason. Or something.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: mansa on April 13, 2010, 06:18:20 PM
Did someone say something about putting a cap on the amount of money you can have in your bank account, as a possible side fix for this?

Something like - 5000 coins?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 13, 2010, 06:19:14 PM
I think the people who actually believe the economy is so broken that it would require a drastic overhaul like removing banking for commoners are merely a quite vocal minority.

There's also the problem here of perception.  People who don't think this is really much of a problem aren't tempted to say much more than "not a problem" and move on.  Meanwhile, those who do think it is a problem offer long-winded and numerous posts containing observations and proposed solutions, which tends to overinflate this perspective.

The only things I tend to agree with:

1) Items that require little skill or risk to acquire (e.g. forageable items within safe walking distance of a city) should be minimally profitable.
2) Noble stipends should be large enough to allow them to spend profligately (if they aren't already).
3) Most GMH employee roles could probably be paid a little more.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 13, 2010, 06:55:27 PM
I think the people who actually believe the economy is so broken that it would require a drastic overhaul like removing banking for commoners are merely a quite vocal minority.

That might be the case, then again it might not be.  The fact that threads like these crop up so often and generate so much attention, however, is a solid indicator that quite a few players do think that there is a problem with the in-game economy.  Either way, it is irrelevant;  plenty of evidence, anecdotal and otherwise, has been presented, pointing to the fact that there is indeed a blatant disparity.  The economy, as it stands, does not support the game world promoted by the documentation.  And so far, I have seen more logically sound arguments suggesting that this change to the banking system would help the game more than hinder it.

There's also the problem here of perception.  People who don't think this is really much of a problem aren't tempted to say much more than "not a problem" and move on.  Meanwhile, those who do think it is a problem offer long-winded and numerous posts containing observations and proposed solutions, which tends to overinflate this perspective.

The same problem of perception applies in the reverse scenario, does it not?  The people who think that making this modification to the game isn't a big deal aren't tempted to say much more than "no big deal" and move on.

If you don't like the solution being presented, why not provide a logically sound line of reasoning to defend your point of view, rather than make a meager attempt to demean the importance of the issue?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 07:07:36 PM
Well he did write up a "long winded" reply earlier himself, it just got rebuked.

I've yet to see anyone come up with a legitimate flaw in the suggestion or point out anything that would amount to more than: I just don't like it because I don't want anything to change.

I mean, that's what all the "it would destroy all indie people and raiders and criminals and lions and tigers" talk amounts to, honestly.

And anytime a change to the game is suggested by anyone, for anything, there will be a fraction of the playerbase that wants to fight it tooth and nail because what we have now is familiar, even if it isn't "right".
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Ghost on April 13, 2010, 07:21:53 PM
If it is going to mean anything at all, I actually like the idea of taking away the banking privileges of random nobodies.  I don't see what could go wrong with it, and it will probably be a step in the right direction to improve the economy.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Ashes on April 13, 2010, 07:25:49 PM
Well, it's a new idea.  We can't really say what would happen until it was actually implemented.

I have never actually used a bank account on any of my characters, and my wealthiest was actually a tribal desert elf who had no need of one because we had a camp in which to keep all the phat lewt from our poor victims.  But I do play poor characters, often indie grebbers, and I'm definitely one of those guys that keeps himself poor.  I once had a character in the 'rinth that would spend coin on spice in favor of food and water, and then barely barely scrape by because he was so addicted to it.  The character I played in the militia didn't feel it was appropriate to ask for his wage because he was frightened of the officer, and while he was supplied for and had friends in high places, there were rarely ever two 'sids rattling about in his pocket.

For those of you that want to play poor characters: invent things to spend money on.  Play a spice addict that will blow his stash on spice, get halfway through a knot, then destroy it all out of self-loathing over his addiction.  Play an alcoholic that makes stupid bets over Kruth while sloshed, and definitely let your indie grebber deal out some of that sweet, sweet grebbin' cash for bribes, or for no reason at all.  It's alot more fun, and keeps you from getting so rich your pockets burst.

That said, I find Musashi's idea about banks to be clear-cut, simple, and possibly very, very effective on this issue.

I say give the bitch a shot.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Jdr on April 13, 2010, 07:31:48 PM
Where's MarshalDFX when we need him, to throw economical theory at us? :P
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 13, 2010, 07:35:16 PM
Where's MarshalDFX when we need him, to throw economical theory at us? :P

Saying his name typically summons him.  Just wait a bit.  :D
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 13, 2010, 07:59:47 PM
Nobles are crazy useful to commoners in -tangible- ways, and only the laziest of nobles would just live on their monthly stipend only.

What the hell, dude?

I'll need a few examples to be convinced of that. My interactions with nobles have been mostly limited to the "get out of the tavern" sort, save for a southern bard, who, unexpectedly, prospered more from the formidable Lord Templar Ihsahn Kasix than any noble until offending his aide mortally.

What would my independent commoner need to go to a noble for (at least in the south)? To get help with expanding his shop? Oh.. can't open a shop to begin with. To exert his influence on a templar? Better just to bribe the templar directly. To have a rival's fortunes take an unfortunate downturn? Templar again.

Quote
For those of you that want to play poor characters: invent things to spend money on.  Play a spice addict that will blow his stash on spice, get halfway through a knot, then destroy it all out of self-loathing over his addiction.  Play an alcoholic that makes stupid bets over Kruth while sloshed

So far as money being useful to commoners goes, this was the extent of what I could think of, save bribing a templar to spare your life. Large sums of coin are useless to commoners because they can't be spent on anything. Once you have your set of clothes/equipment, what do you spend it on? Extra clothes that just will vanish from your apartment within a month? Furniture that will do the same? A silt skiff for a quick death?

That guy with 90k in his bank account? He can't spend it on anything except to piss it away on (virtual) whores, spice or booze until his character degenerates and dies. (As an aside, my experience of PC whores is that they're not much interested in the actual whoring and often quickly become an aide). Given the amount of effort needed to accumulate 90k, it hardly seems worth it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 13, 2010, 08:20:21 PM
I can think of a myriad of ways a noble can be of use to an unaffiliated commoner. However, they'd all be IC, and it is completely and totally off-topic. Straw man, red herring, hyperbole...

The fact remains, there is enough of "something" going on with the economy, perceived or otherwise, that there are new threads created on a regular basis to question "it" (whatever "it" is). That indicates clearly that something needs to be addressed, that hasn't yet been addressed, or it wouldn't be a "new" topic of interest every 4-6 weeks.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 13, 2010, 08:20:59 PM
I can think of a myriad of ways a noble can be of use to an unaffiliated commoner. However, they'd all be IC, and it is completely and totally off-topic. Straw man, red herring, hyperbole...

Surely you can generalize them and PM me?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 13, 2010, 08:26:36 PM
I haven't responded to many individual posters in this thread because a) I don't think the topic is really worth spending a lot of time attacking (because I don't agree with the fundamental premise that there is a problem at all) and b) refuting much of it concretely would require examples containing IC info regarding my past characters.

Suffice it to say:  I play independent-type characters almost exclusively, and the types of interactions that the loss of banking code would pose a detriment to are far from "rare" or "uncommon": they're the ordinary way things get done when you're unclanned.

But to address musashi's anti-bank suggestion directly.

#1:  It would be a huge pain in the ass.
#2:  It's a clunky workaround to the fundamental "problem," which is that some characters have more money than some players think they should have.
#3:  It wouldn't even fix the "problem."  The ability to rapidly generate coins would still remain, thus instead of hoarding wealth, people would just spam(whatever) to generate it rapidly whenever they need it.  Need someone assassinated? Spend 5 RL hours spamcrafting.

I would much rather the "problem" be addressed directly, if the Staff actually think that it's a problem.  (And no, I don't think anyone has concretely demonstrated situations where an independent "nobody"'s massive amounts of coins were able to thwart the ambitions of a noble or templar.)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Delstro on April 13, 2010, 08:33:53 PM
This thread is going in circles now, so here is my bottom line.

PCs who collect a lot of coin and leave it in banks = Do not matter to me.
PCs who collect a lot of money and act like templar-ic = Should be slaughtered, unless they are in the sands, then you deal with it on an individual basis.
PCs who collect a lot of coins and spend it with PCs = Good for everybody.
PCs who collect some and spend it with PCs = Good for everybody and, usually, the most REAL personality.


I like the Nenyuki interest charges, atleast for unemployed commoners. Nenyuki rose to power and should be outright charging for bank accounts, atleast for commoners not working for noble or merchant houses.
5% on balances less than 5,000, per month.
10% on balances more than 5,000, but less than 10,000, per month.
20% on balances more than 10,000, per month.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 13, 2010, 08:40:57 PM
I like the Nenyuki interest charges, atleast for unemployed commoners. Nenyuki rose to power and should be outright charging for bank accounts, atleast for commoners not working for noble or merchant houses.
5% on balances less than 5,000, per month.
10% on balances more than 5,000, but less than 10,000, per month.
20% on balances more than 10,000, per month.

If you do this, you might as well just remove Nenyuk from the game. Who in their right minds would keep any money there (except briefly, to transfer sums from north to south or vice versa safely)?

Don't you figure Nenyuk makes enough as it is by claiming the accounts of the newly dead?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 08:57:25 PM
I haven't responded to many individual posters in this thread because a) I don't think the topic is really worth spending a lot of time attacking (because I don't agree with the fundamental premise that there is a problem at all) and b) refuting much of it concretely would require examples containing IC info regarding my past characters.

You did seem to feel like it was worth spending a lot of time attacking when you wrote the long post of yours earlier that got rebuked for not being based on sound reasoning or actual examples of routine happenings in game. You also have been posting quite a lot in this thread from the get go before this particular suggestion was even brought up. So I can't help but feel like you're changing gears here and trying to play like it's not important to you, now that you have to backpedal.

Suffice it to say:  I play independent-type characters almost exclusively, and the types of interactions that the loss of banking code would pose a detriment to are far from "rare" or "uncommon": they're the ordinary way things get done when you're unclanned.

I'm sorry. I don't suffice to say. This is a totally general enough topic that you could provide examples, espcially if they were not rare or uncommon. They should be universal enough that breathing a word about them would not reveal sensative in game secrets about your previous characters of old.


But to address musashi's anti-bank suggestion directly.

#1:  It would be a huge pain in the ass.

Again, without actual examples of how this would be a huge pain in the ass, this statement says nothing other than personal opinion, which you have already admitted is slanted since you don't think there is a problem to begin with, despite the fact that a majority of other players tend to think there is. Yes, a majority, and not just in this thread alone, but in the fact that these kinds of threads continue to come up, posted by different people nearly every time, as the months roll on.

#2:  It's a clunky workaround to the fundamental "problem," which is that some characters have more money than some players think they should have.

This strikes me as another attempt to dismiss the concerns of a vast majority of players without cause because your minority opinion happens to be different. You also fail to provide an example of how its clunky. The general feedback seems to be that it would be anything but. Simple, very very effective ... these are the kinds of opinions most folks posting on the thread have used, and examples have actually been offered up to support them. So it's only fair that if you want to be taken seriously, you need to have actual examples yourself that are not red herrings, strawmen, or hyboles like your last post contained.

#3:  It wouldn't even fix the "problem."  The ability to rapidly generate coins would still remain, thus instead of hoarding wealth, people would just spam(whatever) to generate it rapidly whenever they need it.  Need someone assassinated? Spend 5 RL hours spamcrafting.

But the ability to rapidly generate coins isn't the problem. The ability to hoard them is. This really strikes me as another strawman. Sure, if you need someone assassianted you can spend 5 RL hours spamcrafting to get the money to do so, but that isn't the problem people were talking about. The problem was that a commoner could triple whatever a templar was able to offer, on the fly, out of their personal savings, because of how much money they were able to amass. Under the proposed system, that would be much less possible since the templar would have the ability to amass 50k and the commoner would really only be holding onto 10k at best barring unsual circumstances. So actually ... yes, the problem would be fixed. Or at least way closer to being fixed than it is now.

I would much rather the "problem" be addressed directly, if the Staff actually think that it's a problem.  (And no, I don't think anyone has concretely demonstrated situations where an independent "nobody"'s massive amounts of coins were able to thwart the ambitions of a noble or templar.)

Staff have already stated it is a problem, so again ... it's really not like idea that everything is a-ok is even up for debate. We have established that something is fishy. That's why they're tweaking things, as Nyr said they were doing in response to emails, and it's why Vanth said that it was difficult to fix this "OOC problem that affects the IC economy".

And you seem to be assuming that unless a nobody indie is able to "thwart" the ambitions of a noble or templar, then everything is cool, that's really just moving the goal post.

Most of the complaints in previous threads about the economy were not complaints that nobles and templars were being thwarted, but rather, that they were unable to offer monatery incentive to commoners because commoners were by and large, better off financially than they were and were scoffing at the idea of being paid what the noble could afford to pay them.

Or that people were only joining GMH's to learn the crafting recipies and then going indie to make way more money than they could make as part of a powerful clan. These were the complaints of the people actually posting in the threads, and they're legit complaints. Just because you choose to ignore them and think up a situation I don't think anyone has actually seriously commited to, and decide that unless that can proved, there is no problem ... doesn't actually make it so.

And frankly, being unable to properly motivate would be minions because the minions make more than you, is really about the same as being "thwarted". The end results are strikingly similiar. The noble/templar doesn't get to do what they wanted to do because their resources didn't square up to what commoners already had.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 13, 2010, 09:04:36 PM
Removing Nenyuk isn't a bad idea since the clan is really closed anyway.  Can we even rent apartments other than the automated ones anymore?

My last word on the bank is that I think removing it is more in-line with a harsh fantasy world, especially in where city-states are at war with each other.  I mean, how long would Allanak allow Nenyuk to hold Tuluki noble coins before it froze their Allanaki assets and opened their own "state" bank if any at all?

OOCly I think it will be a different and good change if it were to actually happen.  And another way to seperate commoners from the elite of society.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 13, 2010, 09:13:24 PM
EDIT: Screw it, I give up.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 13, 2010, 09:16:05 PM
#1:  It would be a huge pain in the ass.

From an implementation standpoint, or a player standpoint?  Could you elaborate, please?

#2:  It's a clunky workaround to the fundamental "problem," which is that some characters have more money than some players think they should have.

I agree with this, but it is unlikely that we will see a true overhaul of the economy until Armageddon 2.  Workaround or not, it still serves as a solution to some (though admittedly not all) of the problems that commonly crop up in these discussions.

#3:  It wouldn't even fix the "problem."  The ability to rapidly generate coins would still remain, thus instead of hoarding wealth, people would just spam(whatever) to generate it rapidly whenever they need it.  Need someone assassinated? Spend 5 RL hours spamcrafting.

Is spending five real-life hours spam-crafting realistic?  That's roughly three and a half in-game days, or 30 in-game hours, of straight crafting.   I know you're just trying to provide an illustrative example, however, so let me address your actual point:

Put simply, the proposed change won't stop people from abusing the code to make coin quickly.  People who aren't abusing the code, however, typically don't accrue massive sums of money overnight, and from what I understand, this change was suggested to create an "flexible ceiling" on independent wealth, rather than clamp down on actual income (which might stifle casual players).  The reason I call it a "flexible ceiling" is because players can choose to amass additional wealth beyond what they can carry, in exchange for additional risk (e.g. storing coins in an apartment where they might be stolen, or entrusting some to another individual for safe keeping).

And while it limits the extent of independent wealth, it also creates opportunities:


I would much rather the "problem" be addressed directly, if the Staff actually think that it's a problem.  (And no, I don't think anyone has concretely demonstrated situations where an independent "nobody"'s massive amounts of coins were able to thwart the ambitions of a noble or templar.)

Nobles versus independents isn't even the issue here; it's the amount of wealth that a single independent character can accrue.

I'm not looking to bash you down, Synthesis; I'm simply wondering why you think this change might do more harm than good.  Thus far, you haven't really provided much to go on other than a vague hint at some anecdotal experience you can't share, and a general resistance to the idea on the basis that it doesn't fix everything.  In short, I'm asking you to elaborate on this:

...the types of interactions that the loss of banking code would pose a detriment to are far from "rare" or "uncommon"...

What do you mean by that?  Can you provide examples?  So far, the only so-called "detriments" I see are that:


These are actually good things.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunkkin on April 13, 2010, 09:19:02 PM
Edit:  Edited because the person I quoted edited.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Delstro on April 13, 2010, 09:22:15 PM
I like the Nenyuki interest charges, atleast for unemployed commoners. Nenyuki rose to power and should be outright charging for bank accounts, atleast for commoners not working for noble or merchant houses.
5% on balances less than 5,000, per month.
10% on balances more than 5,000, but less than 10,000, per month.
20% on balances more than 10,000, per month.

If you do this, you might as well just remove Nenyuk from the game. Who in their right minds would keep any money there (except briefly, to transfer sums from north to south or vice versa safely)?

Don't you figure Nenyuk makes enough as it is by claiming the accounts of the newly dead?

The great part about being an unassociated and non-colors wearing commoner? No one cares about you or your interests and are, therefore, bottom rung in the society. Beaten and battered by every group above you. How does Nenyuk know when someone dies? Noone cares about you and no one will report your death in the newspapers. Unless you are a commoner in a merchant house, where all you may receive is a little line in a large ledger that begins with, ďSenior Hunter, So-And-So-Amos died, no further payment is needed.Ē

I am in favor of removing Nenyuk from the game. Unless, Nenyuk was brought back and actively took large amounts of money in caravans from Tuluk to Allanak, or versa vice.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: mansa on April 13, 2010, 09:30:45 PM
I don't think there should be taxes / interest on bank accounts.  I think that sort of code change is large, and unnecessary.

I do think it's outrageous when people have over 30k in their bank accounts, if they are commoners.  However, if they have the political power to back them up, go for it!  How did House Morlaine and House Terash happen?


I think that the easiest code change right now would be:

Max common bank accounts at 10k.


In the future, I would love:
*Have the ability to purchase a larger bank account.
*Have the ability to purchase land, estate, etc
*Have the ability to purchase NPCs.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lithium on April 13, 2010, 09:45:06 PM
At least the Zalanthan economy isn't as effed up as our own. ;)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Schrodingers Cat on April 13, 2010, 09:46:42 PM
What if there were a cap on starting player accounts that could be "upgraded"?  A flat fee to open up the larger account and/or a recurring fee for these accounts.

Or another idea:  What if Nobles and Templars (and other prominent political people with power) could assist commoners by opening "joint" accounts.  Basically the commoner and the assisting political figure would both have access to these accounts, with of course the political figure paying some sort of fee for the service.  This would give political figures access to more funds and in the event that one of their 'investors' die or disappeared or whatever, they'd get they would still have access to their money.

I think the ideas here with changes to the banking system is to eliminate the 'invisible' nature of player's bank accounts, and at the same time draw in people that money is usually associated with (nobles/templars/merchants).  It isn't to punish indy's but to make it more difficult to easily hold onto large amounts of wealth/coins without assistance from political figures.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 13, 2010, 10:17:06 PM
What if there were a cap on starting player accounts that could be "upgraded"?  A flat fee to open up the larger account and/or a recurring fee for these accounts.

My main problem with ideas like these is that it doesn't seem like it would fix the problem, but rather, just draw it out a bit.

What I mean is, if you put a mini barrier in the way like ... needing to pay to open up larger accounts, you're really just moving the goal posts back a bit further. So now, instead of 5 days played compulsive resource farmers being silly rich, it's 10 days played compulsive resource farmers that are.

It also would likely have the undesirable side effect of making the casual players feel that much more behind the 40+ hours a week players, and that's not a direction I'd like to go in.

Quote from: Schrodingers Cat link=topic=38508.msg525568#msg525568

Or another idea:  What if Nobles and Templars (and other prominent political people with power) could assist commoners by opening "joint" accounts.  Basically the commoner and the assisting political figure would both have access to these accounts, with of course the political figure paying some sort of fee for the service.  This would give political figures access to more funds and in the event that one of their 'investors' die or disappeared or whatever, they'd get they would still have access to their money.

I think the ideas here with changes to the banking system is to eliminate the 'invisible' nature of player's bank accounts, and at the same time draw in people that money is usually associated with (nobles/templars/merchants).  It isn't to punish indy's but to make it more difficult to easily hold onto large amounts of wealth/coins without assistance from political figures.

The idea is to make it more difficult for people without political standing to hold onto large amounts of wealth without risk or difficulty.

I suppose a joint system like that could work but at first glance it seems a little over complicated to me when a noble could simply hold the money in his account and dole it out to the minion when the need for it arises. Though I suppose a system like that could hold merit should the two players' play times not sync up well.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 03:04:07 AM
Well, I have to admit that most of your posts so far, musashi, have been tl;dr.  I briefly skimmed the first, and to quote the great George St. Pierre, "I was not impressed by your performance."  But since I now have insomnia secondary to probably the worst conjunctivitis I've ever had, I'll go ahead and start building a quote pyramid with you.

I haven't responded to many individual posters in this thread because a) I don't think the topic is really worth spending a lot of time attacking (because I don't agree with the fundamental premise that there is a problem at all) and b) refuting much of it concretely would require examples containing IC info regarding my past characters.

You did seem to feel like it was worth spending a lot of time attacking when you wrote the long post of yours earlier that got rebuked for not being based on sound reasoning or actual examples of routine happenings in game. You also have been posting quite a lot in this thread from the get go before this particular suggestion was even brought up. So I can't help but feel like you're changing gears here and trying to play like it's not important to you, now that you have to backpedal.

I'm not sure any of my posts thus far have been long, especially by my standards.  One of the main reasons I hadn't responded to you so far (beyond the tl;dr issue) is that I didn't think your posts were sufficiently logical to address without spending copious amounts of time nitpicking them apart...something I didn't have the time to do earlier, as I was sort of trying to get some studying done.  So please, don't take my not engaging you previously as some sort of victory.

Suffice it to say:  I play independent-type characters almost exclusively, and the types of interactions that the loss of banking code would pose a detriment to are far from "rare" or "uncommon": they're the ordinary way things get done when you're unclanned.

I'm sorry. I don't suffice to say. This is a totally general enough topic that you could provide examples, espcially if they were not rare or uncommon. They should be universal enough that breathing a word about them would not reveal sensative in game secrets about your previous characters of old.

Okay, fine.  I've played several successful independent characters who have hired the Byn to do various things.  I have, with previous characters, paid off the Guild, the Sandas, the Red Fangs, the Allanaki Templarate, the Tuluki Templarate, the Akei'ta Var, the Dune Stalkers, and untold numbers of rogue Whirans who enjoy believing they are the lord and master of whatever particular zone they are spamcasting in.  I have employed (or attempted to employ) numerous other independent characters, but this is generally an exercise in frustration given the high PC turnover rate, especially among newbie characters.

These interactions are typically much more expensive than they are for clanned characters.  For example, I had a Tuluki templar confiscate well over 5,000 'sid in coins/gear.  Average payment to keep Guild burglars out of your apartment has been around 500 'sid, although perhaps I've been over-paying in the attempt to placate them.  Average bribe to a templar: 500 'sid per templar every few weeks. Average bribe to a militia PC:  100 'sid whenever they want it (this can be more expensive than bribing a templar if you have a militia PC with high playtimes). Price of a Byn contract: 1,000 'sid minimum, usually, and it goes up from there.  Price of a difficult/risky assassination contract: 5,000 'sid.

If banks were abolished, where would people find the coins to pay off large sums like this?  Carrying around 5,000+ coins is foolish, and yes, coins are heavy.  5,000 coins in inventory drops my current PC from "light" encumbrance to "heavy, but manageable."  Another 5,000 to VERY heavy.  Another 5,000 to unbelievably heavy (at or over maximum encumbrance).

Yes, those are large amounts of 'sid as far as the documentation is concerned, but they aren't large amounts when you consider the ACTUAL state of the ACTUAL economy.  The price of a single meal that will fill you from "a little hungry" to "full" in a tavern, with enough booze to get you buzzed is around 200 coins in Allanak (and actually, buying scrab steaks in the Gaj is currently cheaper than buying just about anything at all from the grocer).  A single piece of armor in Allanak can run you over 500 'sid.  500 to replace a mount stolen by a d-elf.  When one of my previous characters had his matched set of armor stolen by a burglar, it cost over 6,000 'sid to buy it back from Salarr.  Now, according to the documentation, these sorts of sums are ridiculous.  6,000 'sid to replace a slightly-better-than-average set of mercenary armor is just plain retarded, when the "average" Zalanthan supposedly gets by on 300 'sid a month...if the docs were strictly correct, it would take an average mercenary's entire pay for 20 months (7 IC years) to get a full set of decent gear.  Also, as a PC, you better be eating only 1.5 times a month, or you're screwed, according to the docs!  Furthermore, my current PC spends about 1,100 'sid every 125 IC days just on RENT.  That comes out to...I don't know...around 400 I have to spend to keep rent updated every time I log in and bother to pay.  If I decided to stop hunting, grebbing, and crafting, the 15k I have in the bank would be gone or drastically depleted within an IC year.

But to address musashi's anti-bank suggestion directly.

#1:  It would be a huge pain in the ass.

Again, without actual examples of how this would be a huge pain in the ass, this statement says nothing other than personal opinion, which you have already admitted is slanted since you don't think there is a problem to begin with, despite the fact that a majority of other players tend to think there is. Yes, a majority, and not just in this thread alone, but in the fact that these kinds of threads continue to come up, posted by different people nearly every time, as the months roll on.

See above for encumbrance penalties--pain in the ass (and if you haven't experienced combat-related encumbrance penalties for yourself, I highly recommend you go out and try fighting at heavy, but manageable sometime).  

The main pain in the ass is that it will tightly bind together crafting/grebbing activity with expenses.  Currently, I can greb up 5,000 or so 'sid in a couple of RL weeks then just chill and do whatever the fuck I feel like doing (like actually interacting with other PCs) for the next RL month or so.  Without a bank, every time I log in, I will have to greb/craft/etc....then go pay my rent to get rid of the excess, then go purchase food immediately to get rid of the excess, then go pay my other miscellaneous expenses immediately to get rid of the excess, and if Templars A and B and Militia PCs A, B, and C and the Guild guy and the Red Fang guy aren't online at the time, I'm stuck holding a fucking fat sack of cash until I can catch up to them, which may take a RL week or more.  Is that concrete enough for you?

#2:  It's a clunky workaround to the fundamental "problem," which is that some characters have more money than some players think they should have.

This strikes me as another attempt to dismiss the concerns of a vast majority of players without cause because your minority opinion happens to be different. You also fail to provide an example of how its clunky. The general feedback seems to be that it would be anything but. Simple, very very effective ... these are the kinds of opinions most folks posting on the thread have used, and examples have actually been offered up to support them. So it's only fair that if you want to be taken seriously, you need to have actual examples yourself that are not red herrings, strawmen, or hyboles like your last post contained.

It is clunky because it imprecisely targets the source of the problem.  That's pretty much all I meant by that.  It's like chemotherapy vs. surgery:  if you have a solid tumor in an easily accessible location with no important anatomical structures nearby, there is no reason to start giving systemic chemotherapy to get rid of it, when you can go in and surgically remove the damn thing.

The "problem" as I have seen it stated is that some folks have more coins (and can make more coins) than some folks think they should have/should be able to generate.  As I stated previously, the anti-bank fix does nothing to change this, the fundamental basis of the complaint.  Instead, it imposes a pain-in-the-ass (see above) restriction on the entire playerbase in the vain hope that folks will decide to stop making tons of 'sid.  And I believe I've previously explained why the anti-bank suggestion will fail at that, as well.

#3:  It wouldn't even fix the "problem."  The ability to rapidly generate coins would still remain, thus instead of hoarding wealth, people would just spam(whatever) to generate it rapidly whenever they need it.  Need someone assassinated? Spend 5 RL hours spamcrafting.

But the ability to rapidly generate coins isn't the problem. The ability to hoard them is. This really strikes me as another strawman. Sure, if you need someone assassianted you can spend 5 RL hours spamcrafting to get the money to do so, but that isn't the problem people were talking about. The problem was that a commoner could triple whatever a templar was able to offer, on the fly, out of their personal savings, because of how much money they were able to amass. Under the proposed system, that would be much less possible since the templar would have the ability to amass 50k and the commoner would really only be holding onto 10k at best barring unsual circumstances. So actually ... yes, the problem would be fixed. Or at least way closer to being fixed than it is now.

Again, I've never seen a situation in-game, or complained about on the boards, where a templar's or noble's plans were seriously thwarted solely or in large part by a mountain of 'sids coming from an independent, unclanned character.  Theoretically the possibility exists, I suppose, but who in their right mind would seriously piss off a templar just to scrabble a bunch of coins from some indie nobody?  If you take that deal, you deserve whatever shitstorm you walk yourself into, and that has been my point and several other people's point as well:  stop stressing about massive quantities of 'sid, because their usefulness in the political arena is limited at best.

As to the ability of nobles/templars to employ people, the Staff have never stated an intent to shoehorn players into employment by any clan or House.  If anything, the addition of poop scraping, cotton picking, obsidian mining, and salt foraging signals a desire to maintain the independent, unclanned character as a viable concept.  If your GMH Agent or noble or templar can't convince people to join the clan with 'sids, COME UP WITH SOMETHING BETTER.  If you're a Salarri, offer people free badass armor.  If you're a Kadian, offer them...well...yeah, nobody really gives a crap about what Kadius sells, so maybe you had better stick to the coins.  If you're Kuraci, give 'em a free tent and a brick of spice (tents are stupid cheap and easy to craft, btw, so this is nothing more than an opportunity cost for a real merchant).  I mean, seriously...the list goes on and on and on.  There are a million things in this game more important than 'sid, and really I'm tired of trying to come up with compelling examples of all of them when it's obvious some people in this thread are merely being obstinate for the sake of rhetorical advantage.

I would much rather the "problem" be addressed directly, if the Staff actually think that it's a problem.  (And no, I don't think anyone has concretely demonstrated situations where an independent "nobody"'s massive amounts of coins were able to thwart the ambitions of a noble or templar.)

Staff have already stated it is a problem, so again ... it's really not like idea that everything is a-ok is even up for debate. We have established that something is fishy. That's why they're tweaking things, as Nyr said they were doing in response to emails, and it's why Vanth said that it was difficult to fix this "OOC problem that affects the IC economy".

And you seem to be assuming that unless a nobody indie is able to "thwart" the ambitions of a noble or templar, then everything is cool, that's really just moving the goal post.

Most of the complaints in previous threads about the economy were not complaints that nobles and templars were being thwarted, but rather, that they were unable to offer monatery incentive to commoners because commoners were by and large, better off financially than they were and were scoffing at the idea of being paid what the noble could afford to pay them.

Or that people were only joining GMH's to learn the crafting recipies and then going indie to make way more money than they could make as part of a powerful clan. These were the complaints of the people actually posting in the threads, and they're legit complaints. Just because you choose to ignore them and think up a situation I don't think anyone has actually seriously commited to, and decide that unless that can proved, there is no problem ... doesn't actually make it so.

And frankly, being unable to properly motivate would be minions because the minions make more than you, is really about the same as being "thwarted". The end results are strikingly similiar. The noble/templar doesn't get to do what they wanted to do because their resources didn't square up to what commoners already had.

See above, I pretty much addressed all of these concerns.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 14, 2010, 03:39:30 AM
There are a million things in this game more important than 'sid, and really I'm tired of trying to come up with compelling examples of all of them when it's obvious some people in this thread are merely being obstinate for the sake of rhetorical advantage.

Then why are you so darn worried about it, Synth?

Your arguments against removing banking suggest you feel like you are having something taken away from you that you enjoy in the game  - and that sucks.  No one wants their enjoyment of the game infringed upon.  But I wish you could just step outside of yourself / your character for a moment and look at game balance about what Armageddon is supposed to be (via the docs). 

Really, if you can greb up and amass 5K coin in a few RL weeks and feel like that's a good representation of what a commoner's life is like on Armageddon, I think it might be wise to pause a moment and think back on the whole theme of the game.

In the end, it sounds like you aren't really considering the valid points in the suggestions offered - but that's often the problem with debates, no one listens because everyone's too busy trying to score points.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on April 14, 2010, 04:05:21 AM
Templars/Guild/Militia/Tribals/Rogue magickal extortionists only charge so damn much coin because they know you indies are such juicy little goldmines.

They probably wouldn't bother your indie commoner so much if it weren't so common for indies to rack up several thousand coins in a short amount of time.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 04:08:01 AM
There are a million things in this game more important than 'sid, and really I'm tired of trying to come up with compelling examples of all of them when it's obvious some people in this thread are merely being obstinate for the sake of rhetorical advantage.

Then why are you so darn worried about it, Synth?

I'm not "so darn worried about it."  I'm presenting arguments against it because I -know- there are other people who feel the same way I do, and I don't want the bandwagon-jumpers to out-shout the people who don't think the original complaint has much merit, and I'm doing this currently primarily because I'm bored.

Your arguments against removing banking suggest you feel like you are having something taken away from you that you enjoy in the game  - and that sucks.  No one wants their enjoyment of the game infringed upon.  But I wish you could just step outside of yourself / your character for a moment and look at game balance about what Armageddon is supposed to be (via the docs). 

Really, if you can greb up and amass 5K coin in a few RL weeks and feel like that's a good representation of what a commoner's life is like on Armageddon, I think it might be wise to pause a moment and think back on the whole theme of the game.

If you bothered to read my post, you'd notice that what the docs say is the average commoner's lifestyle is a far cry from what the average PC faces "on the ground."  The average independent PC has a minimal apartment (250 'sid every 125 IC days), and if you're not around Tuluk, you probably have to pay for your own water (runs about 1 full waterskin every IC day you spend in the desert, comes to about 45 'sid base expense plus 20 'sid stabling fee every time you leave the gates).  So at -minimum-, you're looking at about 50 'sid you have to make every RL day just to pay your rent, and every time you go out the gates, you have to make at least 65 just to cover overhead.  If you go out the gates 1 time every login session, that is 115 'sid you -have- to come up with to maintain a bare minimum, and this is assuming that you can actually kill and cook your own food.  Further, this isn't taking into account the intermittent cost of paying d-elves not to kill you (or the cost of replacing whatever they stole from you).  Most d-elf players I've met out in the wastes have been fairly reasonable of late, so this amounts to about 500 'sid every couple of weeks, which averages to about 35 'sid every RL day over time.  So now we're up to 150 'sid you have to greb every time you leave the gates to cover what amounts to minimal costs over time.  1,500 'sid saved up will only let you go out and come back empty-handed 10 times.  That's what...a week and a half or less of playing for a high-playtime player.

It has been stated time and time again that the average PC is not the average Zalanthan, unless you WANT to be the average Zalanthan...in which case you might as well idle at the corpse pile until you die of dehydration, because that's what's happening to the average Zalanthan in Allanak.

In the end, it sounds like you aren't really considering the valid points in the suggestions offered - but that's often the problem with debates, no one listens because everyone's too busy trying to score points.

How exactly am I not addressing points when I specifically took the time just now to address every point musashi's made (and he seems to be the anti-bank champion at the moment)?  I won't agree that they are -valid- points, but at the very least I've addressed them and explained why I think they fail.

While we're guessing at each other's intentions, I'll hazard a guess that most of the people complaining about indies are players of GMH agents, nobles, or templars who somehow feel stymied or disadvantaged because boo hoo, they can't get what they want, and darn it, the docs say that they should be able to get whatever they want.  :'(
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 04:10:37 AM
Templars/Guild/Militia/Tribals/Rogue magickal extortionists only charge so damn much coin because they know you indies are such juicy little goldmines.

They probably wouldn't bother your indie commoner so much if it weren't so common for indies to rack up several thousand coins in a short amount of time.

True, and I think that's a good thing.  It is perfectly reasonable that criminal elements would charge unaffiliated persons more, since there is less inherent risk of angering truly powerful organizations when doing so.

However, this is a double-edged sword:  criminal elements charge indies more, which in turn forces indies to make more, which in turn causes criminal elements to charge more, which in turn forces indies to make more...you see where this is going?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on April 14, 2010, 04:45:24 AM
Any criminal/corrupt politician worth his weight in ssnd knows better than to overcharge when extorting for two reasons:

1) Charging too much drives victims away-- meaning you won't see another coin out of them unless you decide to chase them down.

2) Killing victims that don't have the money to pay up = 1 less person paying up.

I see it leading to criminal elements charging less to indies, and perhaps focusing more on organizations and clans, 'cause that's where the real money's gonna be at if the change goes in.

That's what my experiences in Zalanthan Organized Crime  has taught me at least.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Flawed on April 14, 2010, 04:48:22 AM
Then why are you so darn worried about it, Synth?

Your arguments against removing banking suggest you feel like you are having something taken away from you that you enjoy in the game  - and that sucks.  No one wants their enjoyment of the game infringed upon.  But I wish you could just step outside of yourself / your character for a moment and look at game balance about what Armageddon is supposed to be (via the docs).  

Really, if you can greb up and amass 5K coin in a few RL weeks and feel like that's a good representation of what a commoner's life is like on Armageddon, I think it might be wise to pause a moment and think back on the whole theme of the game.

In the end, it sounds like you aren't really considering the valid points in the suggestions offered - but that's often the problem with debates, no one listens because everyone's too busy trying to score points.


Some people are saying MAJORITY players think this and that, where I really don't see majority of those visiting GDB  posting save the select few.

Also, grebbing is not the only way to earn sids. I had many social tavern sitting, non merchant pcs who never step out of the city and acquire  over 20k in the course of a couple of months' play. From aides to the stealthy, bribes, blackmails, threats, gifts, etc.

I agree that there is a problem with the economy, but I feel taking off bank account is like having painkillers because your stomach is hurting. You might not feel the pain for a while, but it is still there, and you will have to deal with it sooner or later.

I believe you have to remember that as a new PC, you want to get paid for your efforts to do tasks. But as a veteran PC, you want to get paid for the time you spend on the said task.   The minor difference has a big impact.

I lean towards Synth. Sids is a new pcs/noobie 's starting currency. After some playing days, it is favors, status, politics, connections which are being sold/exchanged. In order to pay for your piece of gossip, I'd buy your wares and sing of it to others, give you something juicy in return, offer you the name of that master assassin, and so on.  From experience, a nobody just offering 20k to the assassin/templar to get someone killed should not work. In fact, if you do that, in most cases I'd take the payment first, kill you, and then deliver your head to the said person for more favor.

Without bank, I see super inconvenience for the off peak and awkward plots. Personally, I enjoy clanned pcs most often, so it won't bother me much.  Perhaps another suggestion might work? Fixing one unrealistic aspect of the game with another unrealistic change just does not settle well to me.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on April 14, 2010, 05:11:58 AM
The main problem I've seen with the economy thus far, is that there's an NPC organization that will hold an unlimited number of coins completely safe and unable to be stolen from. An organization that will do this free of charge and for any nobody who walks up and drops coins on the table.

I personally would love to see the economy based more around trading/bartering rather than raw coinage, for commoners at least. Couple that with the lack of a free iron vault available to anyone and everyone, and I could see things balancing out fine.

This isn't about where the majority stands, it's about a known problem that needs a solution that makes sense.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 05:59:18 AM
I'm working right now. But I will address the points made when I get home in a few hours. Please be patient.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sephiroto on April 14, 2010, 06:42:12 AM
Who in their right minds would keep any money there (except briefly, to transfer sums from north to south or vice versa safely)?

That's actually a great reason to have Nenyuk around.  It probably costs them a lot to move coin around, stockpile it and guard it.  I can imagine VNPC caravans transferring vast sums of coin between noble houses or even from one city to another.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunkkin on April 14, 2010, 08:21:47 AM
The only thing I've found in this thread so far that could be damaging to the in-game economy is hyperbole.

Well, I have to admit that most of your posts so far, musashi, have been tl;dr.  I briefly skimmed the first

Quote
it's obvious some people in this thread are merely being obstinate for the sake of rhetorical advantage.

If you bothered to read my post

I usually agree with you, Synth, but this is becoming a bit rich.  

Also, IF capping or restricting bank accounts had the effect of lowering inflation, then it would cost less to be raided and less to buy things from PC merchants.  For the rest, if a society is living in squalor, if you want to go it alone ... mounts, armor, weapons, and food SHOULD be expensive.  According to the docs.  (And according to any comparison with pre-modern civilizations in RL).
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 14, 2010, 09:07:43 AM
We keep getting back to the point of realism.  Let's think about it, Bill gates scratched and scrimped, and he was a nobody, a high school droput, but GUESS WHAT!!!!!!!,  he's the richest man in the world. 

Why then is it NOT realistic for a commoner to amass some of that massive wealth. 

We, the PC's are not the average bloke you see chilling in zalanthas, we are playing the cream of the crop, the ambitious ones, not the lazy bastards lying in the streets and begging for sid. 

I see no reason why someone cannot have 30K in their bank account.  There's only SO much you can do with that, and it's none of anyone's dam business what they have or what they have stockpiled.  Leave it be and if you don't like it, then play your own way and stop infringing on someone else's enjoyment.  What's realistic for Bill Gates is not realistic for Joe the Plumber.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Jdr on April 14, 2010, 09:21:02 AM
The simple reason is, America is a free capitalist democracy. Allanak/Tuluk are a despotic monarchy.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Cutthroat on April 14, 2010, 09:42:11 AM
Why then is it NOT realistic for a commoner to amass some of that massive wealth. 

We, the PC's are not the average bloke you see chilling in zalanthas, we are playing the cream of the crop, the ambitious ones, not the lazy bastards lying in the streets and begging for sid.

I see this argument used a lot for other reasons, including money-making. Average in this case is not lazy begging bastards. Let's take a look at the documentation:

What you know - Allanak (http://www.armageddon.org/intro/allanak.html)
Quote
The life of an Allanaki citizen is one of strife--expensive and degenerate living conditions, a nearly omnipotent ruler and His Templars watching your every move, and no place to hide except the burning wastelands outside the city gates. Highlord Tektolnes inspires a silent paranoia in all of his subjects, and thus has remained unchallenged during his multi-millenial reign. Most Allanakis are slaves belonging to the nobles and Templars, and the commoners are usually of the merchant class or soldiers in Tektolnes' army. The rest of the population earn their living in less honest ways.

What you know - Labyrinth (http://www.armageddon.org/intro/rinth.html)
Quote
life is a constant struggle in the 'rinth. Resources, food, and money are scarcer here than in any other city in the Known World. Naturally, this leads to "competition" for whatever is available in the alleys.

What you know - Red Storm Village (http://www.armageddon.org/intro/redstorm.html)
Quote
Life in the village is grim. People can make a quick coin by gathering spice, but it is often a fruitless and demanding task. The mixture of elation and depression on the faces of the spice hunters as they come back into the village after a long day sifting through the sands mirrors the bittersweet nature of life here.

About the North (http://www.armageddon.org/intro/north.html)
Quote
You probably grew up in an apartment or tenement in the labyrinthine Warrens, the commoner housing quarter in the southwestern part of the city...
Tuluk (http://www.armageddon.org/intro/tuluk.html)
Quote
South of the Merchant's District lay the Warrens, where the poor and the slaves resided

Although our PCs may or may not be average, we are still playing our PCs amongst NPCs and vNPCs that are similar to our characters. We're playing in a setting where certain economic situations are expected for broad castes and classes of people. To play the exception in so many ways is to disregard the setting. It's too bad that it's almost necessary, though, given how skewed things can get.

I don't agree that removing banking entirely is the way to handle the problem here, but I do feel that it becomes a problem for the game in general when the most fun thing for players is "get rich quick", when there are so many other things to get involved in. You even say yourself that "there's only SO much you can do with [a large amount of money]". So why gather it?

Let's look at the economy problem a different way. What is the problem with other aspects of the game that makes money-hoarding appealing?
 - Is it the high prices on goods that are worth having?
 - Is it the infinite demand on easily-obtained things to sell?
 - Is it the lack of better things to do IG?

Fix what makes large amounts of money necessary and I think you will find less people hoarding it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 10:18:06 AM
Any criminal/corrupt politician worth his weight in ssnd knows better than to overcharge when extorting for two reasons:

1) Charging too much drives victims away-- meaning you won't see another coin out of them unless you decide to chase them down.

2) Killing victims that don't have the money to pay up = 1 less person paying up.

I see it leading to criminal elements charging less to indies, and perhaps focusing more on organizations and clans, 'cause that's where the real money's gonna be at if the change goes in.

That's what my experiences in Zalanthan Organized Crime  has taught me at least.

I don't disagree with any of that, but there is, by necessity of lack of complete information, a disconnect between what the criminal player thinks is fair (i.e. will not increase the desire to spam<whatever> for the victim) and what the effects of the encounter on the victim will actually be.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 14, 2010, 10:20:34 AM
The simple reason is, America is a free capitalist democracy. Allanak/Tuluk are a despotic monarchy.

Very true.  Silver lining, though:  the invisible hand of the Zalanthan market really could be invisible!

Bill Gates (while not the richest man in the real world anymore--fun side fact!) would only be able to do something with that cash in Zalanthas if he had social or political power as well.  Obsidian coins and assets in Zalanthas mean nothing without social or political power.  It is not realistic for a commoner to obtain masses of wealth in normal cases.  You become a target flush with money that you shouldn't have, and you should be aware of it.  There have been exceptions, and those exceptions turned those commoners into forces to be reckoned with socially and politically (Pearl, anyone?  The Ironsword clan?).  I could go on about this but I think I did once before, in a discussion about enforcing coded weight limits in apartments last year (and the underlying mentionable that "apartments are not meant to be warehouses") (http://www.zalanthas.org/gdb/index.php/topic,36512.msg478345.html#msg478345).  I'm just linking to it rather than quoting from it, though.  It does go off on a tangent in one direction related to that thread.

The code of the game can assist this to some extent, but the code is not to be relied on as a babysitter.  We are a mix of code and role playing.  Even if changes are made, players have a responsibility to do their best to adhere to documentation.  We are discussing some options on the IDB, though.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 10:47:16 AM
The main problem I've seen with the economy thus far, is that there's an NPC organization that will hold an unlimited number of coins completely safe and unable to be stolen from. An organization that will do this free of charge and for any nobody who walks up and drops coins on the table.

Why is this a problem, exactly?  When Nenyuk takes your coins, they aren't just sitting on them and doing nothing.  Ostensibly, they are paying master artisans and their House employees with it all, and using it to turn massive amounts of profits by investing your coins in whatever their projects are.  They're using it to keep their favorite templars happy, using it to pay the city-states to hold on to all that property they rent out, and using it to keep the criminals off their backs.  They're the most ingenious Greater Merchant House in the Known World:  they don't even have to SELL ANYTHING to get people to give them their money (for at least the half of their business model that concerns the banks).

To me, it seems like people think it's "a problem" because a) they somehow believe that mass quantities of coins will somehow have political effects that just simply do not happen (except in very rare cases like Pearl and Ysania, and those cases are hopelessly intermingled with political power those characters acquired over probably decades of in-character time); b) they want there to be more poor commoner PCs so they can have the economic leverage to force them to do things; c) they want more people to carry around coins so they can steal them more easily?; d) they are taking a literal interpretation of the docs that doesn't match with the reality of the game as coded and played.

These are the 4 points I see recurring again and again, and I know I've addressed them all.  At this point, it's merely a matter of perception, and the only thing that can happen is degeneration into "uh-huh" vs. "nuh-uh."  Maybe the Staff will agree with the perception that the economy is somehow broken.  If they do, I certainly hope they do something more exhaustive and creative to fix this perceived problem than simply getting rid of the banking functionality.

I personally would love to see the economy based more around trading/bartering rather than raw coinage, for commoners at least. Couple that with the lack of a free iron vault available to anyone and everyone, and I could see things balancing out fine.

This isn't about where the majority stands, it's about a known problem that needs a solution that makes sense.

Again, known problem perceived by some.  I simply do not agree that it is a problem.  The fact that people have a "free vault..." so what?  What exactly is BAD about that, beyond the obvious "aw, it makes it tough for my burglar?"  Yes, they can amass tons of coins if they want, but what are they going to do with them?  A ton of coins for your average independent is like having an stockpile full of bullets, but no guns to shoot them from.

And moving to a pure barter system is just stupid.  It might make a neat April Fool's joke next year, though.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Boggis on April 14, 2010, 10:57:29 AM
It's really too late to look at the economy at this point but if I had to I'd start by looking at clan salaries as my base. Assuming that these groups are the major employers in the land I'd base the prices of things around what a clan member gets paid. Food and drink prices would be reduced greatly. A bottle of whiskey would no longer cost you more than 10% of your salary. Apartment rent likewise for basic hovel-like apartments. Weapons, armour, etc. would also be lowered some in line with the average person's earnings though I'd like to make these things coveted so a person would have to save for each piece they wanted.

Then I'd drastically cut the earnings from mining, salting, hunting, etc. until they come more in line with clan salaries. I'd make it so especially risky hunting / grebbing got it's due reward but no more racking up tons of 'sid easily. I'd cut back on merchants abilities to make piles of coin by selling piles of crap. I'd close the loopholes that can be exploited to make tons of 'sid from certain shops. Subguild tailor in a certain location would no longer be the tap of infinite wealth. Sorry 'bout that elementalists too. I'd make it so that organised hunting / grebbing / merchanting would still be a nicely profitable enterprise for a group but solo working these angles wouldn't make you a rich man unless you worked some risky high-end stuff. Groups would have to be registered with the territory they work in and pay tax / bribes.

All in all I'd cut your average character's ability to make large amounts of coin off at the knees. I'd leave noble stipends as is so they can make use of coin as an asset. Synthesis rightly points out that coin is not really an asset in this game. It should be though. One of the reasons it isn't is because there's a total glut of easy coin available and it takes away something which should be a useful lever for rich characters. It would also help to make clans more attractive to people as they'd at least be getting paid an average wage instead of having to live in a world where prices are completely inflated due to certain groups' ability to reap masses of 'sid very easily. Also receiving clan gear would be a valuable, coveted thing given the reduced amount of easy 'sid floating around.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 11:08:49 AM
Whew, ok home from work. Lets see now.

I've played several successful independent characters who have hired the Byn to do various things.  I have, with previous characters, paid off the Guild, the Sandas, the Red Fangs, the Allanaki Templarate, the Tuluki Templarate, the Akei'ta Var, the Dune Stalkers, and untold numbers of rogue Whirans who enjoy believing they are the lord and master of whatever particular zone they are spamcasting in.  I have employed (or attempted to employ) numerous other independent characters, but this is generally an exercise in frustration given the high PC turnover rate, especially among newbie characters.

These interactions are typically much more expensive than they are for clanned characters.  For example, I had a Tuluki templar confiscate well over 5,000 'sid in coins/gear.  Average payment to keep Guild burglars out of your apartment has been around 500 'sid, although perhaps I've been over-paying in the attempt to placate them.  Average bribe to a templar: 500 'sid per templar every few weeks. Average bribe to a militia PC:  100 'sid whenever they want it (this can be more expensive than bribing a templar if you have a militia PC with high playtimes). Price of a Byn contract: 1,000 'sid minimum, usually, and it goes up from there.  Price of a difficult/risky assassination contract: 5,000 'sid.

If banks were abolished, where would people find the coins to pay off large sums like this?  Carrying around 5,000+ coins is foolish, and yes, coins are heavy.  5,000 coins in inventory drops my current PC from "light" encumbrance to "heavy, but manageable."  Another 5,000 to VERY heavy.  Another 5,000 to unbelievably heavy (at or over maximum encumbrance).

If banks were abolished, where would people find the coins to pay off large sums like this?

I assume what you mean to ask is: If banks were abolished (for grubby commoner PC's only), where would people store the coins to pay off large sums like this?

Because you would find the coins to pay off these large sums the same places you found the coins to pay them off with the past characters you are referencing. Restricting banking to powerful clans and the people that head them would have zero effect upon anyone's ability to actually earn money. It would only detract from their ability stockpile it.

It's really cool that you spent all that money creating interaction within the gameworld, moving and shaking things along and giving other PC's things to do, but I don't see where having to carry your coin with you or risk leaving it in your apartment would have any affect on your ability to shell out any of the payments you mentioned above.

Take a look at how the math works out for all the money said your character was spending:

Tuluki Templar Taking your gear and coins: 5,000
Bribing thieves to leave your apartment alone: 500 (but lets make it 1,000 just because)
Bribing templars: 500 (but lets make it 2,000 for good measure)
Bribing militia soldiers: 100 (but lets make it 3,000 because you said that can get more expensive than templar bribes)
Byn contract: 1,000 (but lets do another 3,000 since those can get even more expensive)
Assassianation contract: 5,000

Your total: 12,100
My total after upping the numbers even more: 19,000

19,000 coins. This is still below the 20k, 30k, 80k figures that independant crafters with high play times are able to stockpile under the current system. This kind of activity could very nearly be afforded entirely by a noble or templar's monthly stipend.

I can't help but feel like what you just explained is how commoners don't need to have disproporinately large amounts of money to really move and shake things around in the gameworld.

19,000 coins however, would be pretty heavy, no doubt about it.

But unless your character lost his gear and money to a templar (thus having to go buy new stuff), bribed those guild thieves (for the whole month), bribed another templar (several times), bribed a militia soldier (even more times than the templar), took out a contract with the Byn, and had someone assassianted all at the same time, before he could even try to go make some more money ... ... it's really unlikely that you would have ever had to actually worry about the weight of 19,000 coins.

It's more likely that your PC paid that money out in parcels, and if that were the case, then even if he didn't have a bank account, he would have never been forced by circumstance to shoulder 19,000 coins around with him all at once.

I suppose you could say, "Alright. But you never know when you're going to have to bribe someone.". This is true, however if there was no banking system available to average commoners, it isn't hard for me to imagine that the people playing templars and militia folk would adopt less of a "pay up right here right now" mentality, and would instead shift to something more closely resembling extortion, where you can agree on a price with them now, go earn that money, and pay them a bit later.

If you got into a bribe bidding war with a GMH family member or a noble or someone who was in a position to drop a large sum of money out their bank account right here right now, sure you would lose out because you couldn't deliver immediately. But that's the whole point of the suggested change. Commoners should not be in a position to drop more money on a whim than a politically connected aristocrat.

Yes, those are large amounts of 'sid as far as the documentation is concerned, but they aren't large amounts when you consider the ACTUAL state of the ACTUAL economy.  The price of a single meal that will fill you from "a little hungry" to "full" in a tavern, with enough booze to get you buzzed is around 200 coins in Allanak (and actually, buying scrab steaks in the Gaj is currently cheaper than buying just about anything at all from the grocer).  A single piece of armor in Allanak can run you over 500 'sid.  500 to replace a mount stolen by a d-elf.  When one of my previous characters had his matched set of armor stolen by a burglar, it cost over 6,000 'sid to buy it back from Salarr.  Now, according to the documentation, these sorts of sums are ridiculous.  6,000 'sid to replace a slightly-better-than-average set of mercenary armor is just plain retarded, when the "average" Zalanthan supposedly gets by on 300 'sid a month...if the docs were strictly correct, it would take an average mercenary's entire pay for 20 months (7 IC years) to get a full set of decent gear.  Also, as a PC, you better be eating only 1.5 times a month, or you're screwed, according to the docs!  Furthermore, my current PC spends about 1,100 'sid every 125 IC days just on RENT.  That comes out to...I don't know...around 400 I have to spend to keep rent updated every time I log in and bother to pay.  If I decided to stop hunting, grebbing, and crafting, the 15k I have in the bank would be gone or drastically depleted within an IC year.

Could you please tell me, where exactly you found it in the docs that commoners are supposed to get by on 300 coins a month? This entire paragraph is based around that, and I don't know where it the docs it says that. Unless you are talking about the fact that some monthly wages for clanned employees only total out to about 300 coins a month. In which case clanned employees have no room and board costs and are almost always supplied with equipment to do their job as well as the raw materials to work their trade. Similiar to how in the real world military wages are lower than civilian sector wages in the same field, but the benefits that compensate make up for it.

See above for encumbrance penalties--pain in the ass (and if you haven't experienced combat-related encumbrance penalties for yourself, I highly recommend you go out and try fighting at heavy, but manageable sometime). 

Here, I think you're just being over dramatic. I mean, when you go out from the city to fight stuff, you'll almost assuredly have a mount that you would have packed these coins onto because they're heavy. To try and claim that this is going to actually affect anyone's fighting ability is just bogus.

Maybe you don't have a mount, but then you probably also don't have enough coins to to make the weight of them a factor. Or if you do, then you should spend some of them to go buy a mount.

The main pain in the ass is that it will tightly bind together crafting/grebbing activity with expenses.  Currently, I can greb up 5,000 or so 'sid in a couple of RL weeks then just chill and do whatever the fuck I feel like doing (like actually interacting with other PCs) for the next RL month or so.  Without a bank, every time I log in, I will have to greb/craft/etc....then go pay my rent to get rid of the excess, then go purchase food immediately to get rid of the excess, then go pay my other miscellaneous expenses immediately to get rid of the excess, and if Templars A and B and Militia PCs A, B, and C and the Guild guy and the Red Fang guy aren't online at the time, I'm stuck holding a fucking fat sack of cash until I can catch up to them, which may take a RL week or more.  Is that concrete enough for you?

Is this concrete enough for me? Well, here's my problem with the example.

Most PC's don't just run out and spam greb for a couple of RL weeks straight and then chill for a RL month doing nothing but interacting with other PC's. Most PC's want to improve their skills, and many of those skills either directly or indirectly tie into making money.

If someone is, for example, playing a ranger ... the norm, as I have seen it, is that nearly every IG day they are logged in they will head out and do a bit of hunting, do a bit of grebbing, do a bit of crafting, just to try and improve thier skills so they can become more codedly competant. But since all of that ends up earning them resources along the way, they also end up making money off of it. Skill gains and income are very closely bound together more often than not, especially for no name commoners with no clan backing.

To me, this example of yours, like the last one, seems over dramatic compared to how most people play.

It is clunky because it imprecisely targets the source of the problem.  That's pretty much all I meant by that.  It's like chemotherapy vs. surgery:  if you have a solid tumor in an easily accessible location with no important anatomical structures nearby, there is no reason to start giving systemic chemotherapy to get rid of it, when you can go in and surgically remove the damn thing.

The "problem" as I have seen it stated is that some folks have more coins (and can make more coins) than some folks think they should have/should be able to generate.  As I stated previously, the anti-bank fix does nothing to change this, the fundamental basis of the complaint.  Instead, it imposes a pain-in-the-ass (see above) restriction on the entire playerbase in the vain hope that folks will decide to stop making tons of 'sid.  And I believe I've previously explained why the anti-bank suggestion will fail at that, as well.

You seem to be under the impression that the problem is that some folks make more coins than some other folks think they should be making. This is incorrect.

The actual problem has been clearly identified.

Please allow me to remind you of what the problem is by quoting Vanth.

As is often the case, the heart of this issue was (IMO) captured in a nutshell on the first page of the thread:

The schism between clannie and independent only becomes wide for high-playtime players. 

If Salarri Hunter Amos and Independent Hunter Malik both play 10 hours a week (2 a day, 5 days a week), they probably make about the same amount of 'sid, but Amos has a better deal because of clan perks.

If Amos and Malik are both on 40 hours a week (and yes, quite a few of you play that much), then Malik is much, much more wealthy, because he is making money per RL time period rather than per Zalanthan time period.

It's really impossible to balance for this OOC factor in the IC economy.

The problem is that schism that developes at high play times which allows Malik to be making much, much more money than Amos, because he is making money per RL time period rather than per Zalathan time period. This is the problem. Clearly cut.

Now that we know what the problem is, imagine having no bank accounts for commoners.

What affect would it have on Amos and Malik at 10 hours played a week?
What affect would it have on Amos and Malik at 40 hours played a week?

The affect of having no banks to store money in would only be a serious barrier to Malik at 40 hours played. Amos has a safe footlocker to put excess coins in, and a salary in any case along with food and water and a place to sleep. Amos really wouldn't be seriously inconvienced by a lack of banks.

Malik at 10 hours played a week would probably be living hand to mouth, slightly less well off than his clanned counterpart, but making about the same amount of income, which would not be anywhere near the 20k, 30k, 60k disparity I mentioned up above. He would probably have around a large in his backpack at any given time, nothing nearly so heavy as to start causing him trouble or space issues.

Malik at 40 hours played however, would start to be seriously inconvienced by the sheer amount of coins he was making because he would need to have a place to put them all. Weight and space issues would serve as a natual barrier to him making more money in the same sort of way that weight serves as a natural barrier in keeping rangers and assassians from wearing silt horror plate mail.

Having no bank access for commoners would be felt strongest by Malik at 40 hours a week, the source of the schism, and felt very little if at all by anyone else. To use your example, this sounds a lot more like tagetting the tumor with surgery than with chemo.

The rest of what you wrote was written under the assumption that the problem was something else, so I don't think it applies and thus, didn't comment on it further.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: flurry on April 14, 2010, 11:10:15 AM
Let's look at the economy problem a different way. What is the problem with other aspects of the game that makes money-hoarding appealing?
 - Is it the high prices on goods that are worth having?
 - Is it the infinite demand on easily-obtained things to sell?
 - Is it the lack of better things to do IG?

Fix what makes large amounts of money necessary and I think you will find less people hoarding it.

I think prices are a factor worth considering, especially where it comes to more basic needs. Player perception of how much a commoner should have is going to be influenced by how much things cost.

However, I think the problem really begins when characters have much, much more than they need, to the point where it becomes excessive spending simply for the sake of excessive spending. At that point, the drive to amass coins can't really driven by prices anymore.

Even though I think there is a problem, I'm not sure I like the bank-related solutions. My concerns would be unintended consequences of that but also I wonder how to justify Nenyuk adopting those kinds of wealth-limiting policies.

But I do think it would be kind of interesting to look at the why and how of the genuinely huge sums of coins. Closing some of the "loopholes" or "tricks", as others have suggested, to eliminate easy money with little effort or risk, seems like a definite step in the right direction.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 11:12:14 AM
It's really too late to look at the economy at this point but if I had to I'd start by looking at clan salaries as my base. Assuming that these groups are the major employers in the land I'd base the prices of things around what a clan member gets paid. Food and drink prices would be reduced greatly. A bottle of whiskey would no longer cost you more than 10% of your salary. Apartment rent likewise for basic hovel-like apartments. Weapons, armour, etc. would also be lowered some in line with the average person's earnings though I'd like to make these things coveted so a person would have to save for each piece they wanted.

Then I'd drastically cut the earnings from mining, salting, hunting, etc. until they come more in line with clan salaries. I'd make it so especially risky hunting / grebbing got it's due reward but no more racking up tons of 'sid easily. I'd cut back on merchants abilities to make piles of coin by selling piles of crap. I'd close the loopholes that can be exploited to make tons of 'sid from certain shops. Subguild tailor in a certain location would no longer be the tap of infinite wealth. Sorry 'bout that elementalists too. I'd make it so that organised hunting / grebbing / merchanting would still be a nicely profitable enterprise for a group but solo working these angles wouldn't make you a rich man unless you worked some risky high-end stuff. Groups would have to be registered with the territory they work in and pay tax / bribes.

All in all I'd cut your average character's ability to make large amounts of coin off at the knees. I'd leave noble stipends as is so they can make use of coin as an asset. Synthesis rightly points out that coin is not really an asset in this game. It should be though. One of the reasons it isn't is because there's a total glut of easy coin available and it takes away something which should be a useful lever for rich characters. It would also help to make clans more attractive to people as they'd at least be getting paid an average wage instead of having to live in a world where prices are completely inflated due to certain groups' ability to reap masses of 'sid very easily. Also receiving clan gear would be a valuable, coveted thing given the reduced amount of easy 'sid floating around.

See, now that is a solution I can agree with.

The only exception I'd make is for merchants.  They should still be able to make substantially more than your average warrior/ranger/assassin/burglar/pickpocket, because really that's the only thing they're good at, and it's what the class is entirely aimed at.  At the very least, a merchant PC should make enough to be able to pay 2-3 independent grebbers to go do things for them...otherwise what is the point of the merchant class?  Because honestly, until you can mastercraft items, almost nobody wants any of the bullshit a PC merchant (who isn't clanned) can craft, because the vast majority of it is useless or crappy.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 11:15:12 AM
musashi, we can go back and forth with hypothetical scenarios all damn day without proving anything.  You wanted examples, I gave them to you, I don't agree with your counter-examples.

If all you've got left is arguing over hypotheticals, the discussion is basically over.  As I said, at this point it's merely "uh-huh" vs. "nuh-uh."
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 14, 2010, 11:23:20 AM
Some of the 'easier' ways to make money are veritably risk free, but they also generate a piddly amount of coins.  (Cotton picking, anyone tried it?)

Some of the 'easier' ways to make money are not low-risk.  Those tasks and my thoughts on them:
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 11:24:46 AM
While we're guessing at each other's intentions, I'll hazard a guess that most of the people complaining about indies are players of GMH agents, nobles, or templars who somehow feel stymied or disadvantaged because boo hoo, they can't get what they want, and darn it, the docs say that they should be able to get whatever they want.  :'(

To save you the trouble of guessing at my intentions, I play independent characters almost exclusively, have never been in a higher up GMH, noble, or templar role, and have high play times. I would stand to be most affected by the changes I suggested. I'm not suggesting them because I want to have an advantage over anyone, I'm suggesting them because I think they would bring the game back in line with the documentation and go a good step of the way towards fixing the problem the economy situation IG faces.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 11:27:25 AM
musashi, we can go back and forth with hypothetical scenarios all damn day without proving anything.  You wanted examples, I gave them to you, I don't agree with your counter-examples.

If all you've got left is arguing over hypotheticals, the discussion is basically over.  As I said, at this point it's merely "uh-huh" vs. "nuh-uh."

Fair enough I suppose. But you never had anything other than hypotheticals yourself so if that's the case, you never raised anything beyond a simple "nuh-uh" to begin with.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 11:29:56 AM
musashi, we can go back and forth with hypothetical scenarios all damn day without proving anything.  You wanted examples, I gave them to you, I don't agree with your counter-examples.

If all you've got left is arguing over hypotheticals, the discussion is basically over.  As I said, at this point it's merely "uh-huh" vs. "nuh-uh."

Fair enough I suppose. But you never had anything other than hypotheticals yourself so if that's the case, you never raised anything beyond a simple "nuh-uh" to begin with.

Clever, but inaccurate.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 11:34:04 AM
While we're guessing at each other's intentions, I'll hazard a guess that most of the people complaining about indies are players of GMH agents, nobles, or templars who somehow feel stymied or disadvantaged because boo hoo, they can't get what they want, and darn it, the docs say that they should be able to get whatever they want.  :'(

To save you the trouble of guessing at my intentions, I play independent characters almost exclusively, have never been in a higher up GMH, noble, or templar role, and have high play times. I would stand to be most affected by the changes I suggested. I'm not suggesting them because I want to have an advantage over anyone, I'm suggesting them because I think they would bring the game back in line with the documentation and go a good step of the way towards fixing the problem the economy situation IG faces.

I was just being a little snarky at Sinna, although I'm flattered that you took me seriously enough to respond at length.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 11:37:01 AM
It's really too late to look at the economy at this point but if I had to I'd start by looking at clan salaries as my base. Assuming that these groups are the major employers in the land I'd base the prices of things around what a clan member gets paid. Food and drink prices would be reduced greatly. A bottle of whiskey would no longer cost you more than 10% of your salary. Apartment rent likewise for basic hovel-like apartments. Weapons, armour, etc. would also be lowered some in line with the average person's earnings though I'd like to make these things coveted so a person would have to save for each piece they wanted.

Then I'd drastically cut the earnings from mining, salting, hunting, etc. until they come more in line with clan salaries. I'd make it so especially risky hunting / grebbing got it's due reward but no more racking up tons of 'sid easily. I'd cut back on merchants abilities to make piles of coin by selling piles of crap. I'd close the loopholes that can be exploited to make tons of 'sid from certain shops. Subguild tailor in a certain location would no longer be the tap of infinite wealth. Sorry 'bout that elementalists too. I'd make it so that organised hunting / grebbing / merchanting would still be a nicely profitable enterprise for a group but solo working these angles wouldn't make you a rich man unless you worked some risky high-end stuff. Groups would have to be registered with the territory they work in and pay tax / bribes.

All in all I'd cut your average character's ability to make large amounts of coin off at the knees. I'd leave noble stipends as is so they can make use of coin as an asset. Synthesis rightly points out that coin is not really an asset in this game. It should be though. One of the reasons it isn't is because there's a total glut of easy coin available and it takes away something which should be a useful lever for rich characters. It would also help to make clans more attractive to people as they'd at least be getting paid an average wage instead of having to live in a world where prices are completely inflated due to certain groups' ability to reap masses of 'sid very easily. Also receiving clan gear would be a valuable, coveted thing given the reduced amount of easy 'sid floating around.

I felt bad for pagerolling Boggis' excellent comprehensive fix here, so I'll quote it again.  This is really what needs to be done, I think.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 14, 2010, 11:39:32 AM
Let's leave things how they are, if you want to live a life of poverty, then do so and be as 'realistic' as you want and do what you wish.
I also know that thinking outside of the box of what you can and can't do is what created the BYN, created the Silver Ginka and other
great works and organizations in the game.  Having a mindset that we are all doomed to live lives of poverty and mediocrity doesn't help
the advancement of the game one iota, neither does sitting in a tavern for hours on end drinking or fake drinking and talking about the
high prices of furniture and rugs and fire insurance for ladybugs.  Personally, I find THAT unrealistic, especially when you're a city guard or
what have you.  WE define how the game runs and the documentation is there as a GUIDE not as a BIBLE.  To me, staying poor and
wanting others to stay poor is simply pushing a slave mentality on the rest of those who wish to have some form of standing/respect and
perhaps a little empire of their own.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Schrodingers Cat on April 14, 2010, 11:55:20 AM
WE define how the game runs and the documentation is there as a GUIDE not as a BIBLE.  To me, staying poor and wanting others to stay poor is simply pushing a slave mentality on the rest of those who wish to have some form of standing/respect and perhaps a little empire of their own.

I disagree.  We define the details, the names and the places and where and how the battles happen but on a basic level it is the staff that define how the game runs, I don't think you'd argue with that.  They set up the systems and players use the systems as a framework to role-play out their character's lives.  The documentation is a baseline of how things are and should be, it provides the foundation.  I think that when the reality of gameplay doesn't in fact match up the documentation, this a signal that something is wrong.  I think that the problem is figuring out what that problem is and addressing that.

Many of us are resistant to changes, but sometimes they aren't as bad as we think.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 12:03:12 PM
musashi, we can go back and forth with hypothetical scenarios all damn day without proving anything.  You wanted examples, I gave them to you, I don't agree with your counter-examples.

If all you've got left is arguing over hypotheticals, the discussion is basically over.  As I said, at this point it's merely "uh-huh" vs. "nuh-uh."

Fair enough I suppose. But you never had anything other than hypotheticals yourself so if that's the case, you never raised anything beyond a simple "nuh-uh" to begin with.

Clever, but inaccurate.

Wasn't going for clever. The suggestion has never been implemented before, so prediction as to how it will affect things is going to be hypothetical by default.
But that doesn't really mean much. When discussing something like this, all you can do is apply some logic and past experience to deduce a likely outcome.

Like when you said that the encumberence of the coins would be a pain for people going out and fighting, and I pointed out how it probably wouldn't be, because people already have a way to get around carrying heavy things by packing them onto their mount. That's hypothetical, but it isn't sloppy guesswork, it can be nearly assured that's what would happen because that's the logical thing to do, and that's what people do already with heavy stuff they don't want to carry while fighting, ie ... past experience.

Sure you can disagree with that and assume that people will carry their coins in their backpack at extremely heavy and not ever think to pack them on their mount to avoid the problem ... but at that point, you aren't really contributing to the topic anymore, you're just being contrary.

But at this point, I'm explaining how logic works to you, and if we're that far gone already, there's no point in further discussion, because you really are at the nuh-uh stage.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 12:07:05 PM
Packing heavy shit on your mount no longer works very well for hunting, unless you plan only on skinning very light things, because you'll be unable to unpack your bags at the end of the day due to encumbrance issues.  Still a pain in the ass, whether you're fighting with it on your back or not.

p.s. the desert isn't the only place people get into fights
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 12:12:43 PM
It's really too late to look at the economy at this point but if I had to I'd start by looking at clan salaries as my base. Assuming that these groups are the major employers in the land I'd base the prices of things around what a clan member gets paid. Food and drink prices would be reduced greatly. A bottle of whiskey would no longer cost you more than 10% of your salary. Apartment rent likewise for basic hovel-like apartments. Weapons, armour, etc. would also be lowered some in line with the average person's earnings though I'd like to make these things coveted so a person would have to save for each piece they wanted.

Then I'd drastically cut the earnings from mining, salting, hunting, etc. until they come more in line with clan salaries. I'd make it so especially risky hunting / grebbing got it's due reward but no more racking up tons of 'sid easily. I'd cut back on merchants abilities to make piles of coin by selling piles of crap. I'd close the loopholes that can be exploited to make tons of 'sid from certain shops. Subguild tailor in a certain location would no longer be the tap of infinite wealth. Sorry 'bout that elementalists too. I'd make it so that organised hunting / grebbing / merchanting would still be a nicely profitable enterprise for a group but solo working these angles wouldn't make you a rich man unless you worked some risky high-end stuff. Groups would have to be registered with the territory they work in and pay tax / bribes.

All in all I'd cut your average character's ability to make large amounts of coin off at the knees. I'd leave noble stipends as is so they can make use of coin as an asset. Synthesis rightly points out that coin is not really an asset in this game. It should be though. One of the reasons it isn't is because there's a total glut of easy coin available and it takes away something which should be a useful lever for rich characters. It would also help to make clans more attractive to people as they'd at least be getting paid an average wage instead of having to live in a world where prices are completely inflated due to certain groups' ability to reap masses of 'sid very easily. Also receiving clan gear would be a valuable, coveted thing given the reduced amount of easy 'sid floating around.

If clan salaries should be the base for determining cost (and that isn't a bad idea, though maybe a lot of work to go through and set), then the benefits of having free food, water, storage space, and backing should be factored into that as well, if you see what I mean.

Amos the indie ranger should be able to make a bit more money than Malik the clanned ranger assuming they both do the same amount of work.

But at the end of the day Malik the clanned ranger should have more free coin to spend in his pocket because he doesn't have the expenses Amos the indie ranger has.

That kind of thing.

Other than that I think it's a really nice idea, but very idealistic and sparse on the details.

Like saying: If I could do healthcare reform everyone would have access to all the medicine and doctor care that they need, and we'd pay for it with social insurance.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Boggis on April 14, 2010, 12:26:46 PM
I really don't think we need to do away with banks. Banking organisations of one form or another existed in many ancient societies and these were typically open to taking money from anybody who had it. Was a moot point with the lower classes mostly as they were dirt poor all their lives but some commoner merchants with enough business acumen could do very well for themselves (slave trade, exotic goods import, etc.) and banks would gladly take their coin. Money is money at the end of the day and sneering at the nouveau riche is something best left to aristocrats.

In Ancient Greece they recognised the difficulties and dangers in carrying money around and would offer exchange notes for travellers which would allow them to deposit their coin in one port and then exchange the note in their destination port in return for their money back. Coinage just isn't portable in any kind of large amount and any society would recognise this and come up with a solution. Nenyuk is a bit of an OOC crutch in that they haven't really explained how it all works but with a bit of fleshing out it could be a perfectly workable IC solution to a universal problem with coinage.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 14, 2010, 12:28:00 PM
I think clans should have 'free apartments' in their compounds.  Have them accessible from outside the compound.  They are only free to those clanned for that GMH/noble.  This gives them better places to live than the communal barracks.  You KNOW one of the biggest reasons that clanned bitch about this is because of how much they have to work for an apartment, because they all have to have one.  Hell, maybe more than one, some of these people.  (I hate you people that get like a half dozen apartments with ONE character, by the way.  Oh, and, "I have too much stuff for one apartment," bullshit?  Yeah, you have all that stupid trash why?)  There, now that's a proper coin sink.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 12:35:03 PM
Packing heavy shit on your mount no longer works very well for hunting, unless you plan only on skinning very light things, because you'll be unable to unpack your bags at the end of the day due to encumbrance issues.  Still a pain in the ass, whether you're fighting with it on your back or not.

p.s. the desert isn't the only place people get into fights

Your original point was about fighting, not about having to unpack it later and put it somewhere which is a difficulty everyone deals with already by either travelling light and not taking in more than they can carry, or by storing what they don't immediately need in an apartment or clan hall; and you have to be severely loaded down before that becomes an issue to begin with. 1-2k in coins would not render you unable to go on a hunting trip by any means.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Boggis on April 14, 2010, 12:36:53 PM
Other than that I think it's a really nice idea, but very idealistic and sparse on the details.

I'm in work - don't have the time to be putting too much thought into the nuts and bolts :) Just saying how I would approach it to begin with if it was a project of mine - certainly a pile of complexity would end up being added. Also, don't have access to all the details of item prices, clan salaries, data on how much people earn and how, etc. Without that we're just tossing vague numbers around. It looks like a really big, time consuming project that would involve a lot of trawling through a wide variety of data just to get to the point where we'd understand how things work currently and see where the imbalances are. And then would come the re-design and balancing which would be a nightmare to get right. It's all doable but probably not worth the investment for something that's going to end in the (reasonably) near future.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Cutthroat on April 14, 2010, 12:38:26 PM
Quote from: ianmartin
WE define how the game runs and the documentation is there as a GUIDE not as a BIBLE.

It's neither a guide nor a bible. It's a foundation to base your roleplay on. The further you stray from the docs, the more of an "exception" your PC is. Exceptions don't fit in well with the majority of PCs, NPCs, and vNPCs. You are allowed to play the exception, provided you also accept the consequences for doing so. That has been defined many times before.

I really don't think we need to do away with banks. Banking organisations of one form or another existed in many ancient societies and these were typically open to taking money from anybody who had it. Was a moot point with the lower classes mostly as they were dirt poor all their lives but some commoner merchants with enough business acumen could do very well for themselves (slave trade, exotic goods import, etc.) and banks would gladly take their coin. Money is money at the end of the day and sneering at the nouveau riche is something best left to aristocrats.

In Ancient Greece they recognised the difficulties and dangers in carrying money around and would offer exchange notes for travellers which would allow them to deposit their coin in one port and then exchange the note in their destination port in return for their money back. Coinage just isn't portable in any kind of large amount and any society would recognise this and come up with a solution. Nenyuk is a bit of an OOC crutch in that they haven't really explained how it all works but with a bit of fleshing out it could be a perfectly workable IC solution to a universal problem with coinage.

I support other possible changes to the banking system, but I agree doing away with it entirely for unclanned PCs is not such a great idea. I think a few things need to be hammered out about how Nenyuk runs:

How does Nenyuk operate worldwide? (edit to clarify: Why can Amos deposit 3000 coins in Allanak, go up to Tuluk and withdraw 3000 coins?)
How does Nenyuk make money from their banking system, aside from claiming dead people's loot?
How do they keep track of people with accounts? As in, what is preventing Malik from withdrawing from Amos' account?

I think clans should have 'free apartments' in their compounds.  Have them accessible from outside the compound.  They are only free to those clanned for that GMH/noble.  This gives them better places to live than the communal barracks.  You KNOW one of the biggest reasons that clanned bitch about this is because of how much they have to work for an apartment, because they all have to have one.  ... There, now that's a proper coin sink.

I think this is an interesting idea, although it would take a lot of building in this game to start. It could essentially be set up like dormitories. Perhaps a consideration for 2.Arm, but it would really cut down on the amount of spending clanned people have to do and make clanned life more appealing.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 12:44:47 PM
Other than that I think it's a really nice idea, but very idealistic and sparse on the details.

I'm in work - don't have the time to be putting too much thought into the nuts and bolts :) Just saying how I would approach it to begin with if it was a project of mine - certainly a pile of complexity would end up being added. Also, don't have access to all the details of item prices, clan salaries, data on how much people earn and how, etc. Without that we're just tossing vague numbers around. It looks like a really big, time consuming project that would involve a lot of trawling through a wide variety of data just to get to the point where we'd understand how things work currently and see where the imbalances are. And then would come the re-design and balancing which would be a nightmare to get right. It's all doable but probably not worth the investment for something that's going to end in the (reasonably) near future.

Yeah, I know what you mean. In theory it would be awesome but it seems like we would have to scrape everything we have now and rebuild from the ground up to create something like that.

But I wonder if even in a brand new system ... we wouldn't still be plauged by the problem Vanth and Lizzie identified early on with the schism that develops at high play times. I'd like to really tackle that problem, before doing anything else with the economy, because I think that problem is one that keeps these threads spawning every other month.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 14, 2010, 01:09:12 PM
I don't know about y'all, but musashi and synthesis have crazy GDB skills and WAY too much time on their hands.  You guys should seriously be staff members.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 14, 2010, 01:10:02 PM
Not saying that staff members have time on their hands, noone get me wrong there please.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Boggis on April 14, 2010, 01:18:50 PM
Really not sure how to limit high playtime people's earning potential. Some people love the wealth grind. If things were re-designed to greatly reduce the earning from simple stuff maybe they'd be forced to go after risky things to make more 'sid and that'll take a fair sized cull from that group probably. For those who want to really grind out the simple things over and over and over. I don't know. I'd like to think that most players here wouldn't be interested in doing that. I mean it's like mining on EVE. Sure you can do it solo if you want but really gets old very, very quickly and you're kind of missing the point.

For low playtime people I wouldn't be opposed to some kind of offline earning equating to them having some form of menial job. Could be capped to prevent somebody not logging in for months or something and coming back as Joe Millionaire. Could kick in if you play < x hours per week. Would free up these low playtime people to just RP and not have to worry about eking out a living codewise and playing. Potential for abuse is there no doubt but could have a policy that if you're caught abusing it the offline earning flag is turned off on your account for good.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 01:39:41 PM
Packing heavy shit on your mount no longer works very well for hunting, unless you plan only on skinning very light things, because you'll be unable to unpack your bags at the end of the day due to encumbrance issues.  Still a pain in the ass, whether you're fighting with it on your back or not.

p.s. the desert isn't the only place people get into fights

Your original point was about fighting, not about having to unpack it later and put it somewhere which is a difficulty everyone deals with already by either travelling light and not taking in more than they can carry, or by storing what they don't immediately need in an apartment or clan hall; and you have to be severely loaded down before that becomes an issue to begin with. 1-2k in coins would not render you unable to go on a hunting trip by any means.

My original point is that it would be a pain in the ass.  Maybe that wasn't a good example, so I'll grant you that.

However, your argument that it wouldn't be a pain in the ass is defeated by your own intent:  if having to carry around all your coins -isn't- a pain in the ass, why would it serve as a negative incentive to accumulating them?

Granted, the magnitude of the ass pain is positively correlated with the number of coins, but then the question becomes:  how much is too much?  Aaand then we're back to square 1, where we argue about how much coin it takes for an independent PC to reasonably get along.  The quick answer, and probably the correct one, is that nobody knows.  It's dependent on each player's knowledge of the game and their ability to be manipulative in-character.

However, if some sort of "bank cap" were instituted, I'd suggest that 10,000 coins is about the reasonable level to have on reserve.  This isn't based on anything other than the fact that that's the point where I feel that my characters are usually reasonably safe from catastrophic losses. Maybe I'm a weenie and I'm playing it a little too safe, though.

Also, the idea that the fundamental problem is the disparity between high and low playtimes is something that only you and Vanth brought up.  I've generally been tailoring my comments for the -rest- of the problems I've seen griped about in the thread.  And yes, the four (I believe it was four) that I mentioned have all been brought up by other posters in this thread.  I'm not merely inventing them for the sake of arguing with myself on the internet.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 01:45:17 PM
Serious props for having Terry Pratchett in your sig Boggins, btw. Just noticed that.

Well I think that putting a cap on the amount of money someone is able to attain could be a good way to go about it. I men we do that with skills and it seems to work out just fine. But I don't like the idea of a hard cap. Like, just a flat: You can only have x amount of money maximum.

But something on a sliding scale where the more money you aquire, the more challenges you face for having it, would be a step in the right direction.

The banking thing is one possible way to go about it, but I'm hardly married to that idea. Anyone else have any ideas along those lines? I think that in all the previous threads about the game's economy we've beat the "make resources more finite" and "let low play time people make automatic money" ideas to death and not gone anywhere.

Why not explore options in a new direction?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 14, 2010, 01:55:34 PM
musashi, we can go back and forth with hypothetical scenarios all damn day without proving anything.  You wanted examples, I gave them to you, I don't agree with your counter-examples.

My only concern is that you seem to think that commoners dropping 12-15k is perfectly normal.  Again, that's the entire problem in the first place.

The banking thing is one possible way to go about it, but I'm hardly married to that idea. Anyone else have any ideas along those lines? I think that in all the previous threads about the game's economy we've beat the "make resources more finite" and "let low play time people make automatic money" ideas to death and not gone anywhere.

Why not explore options in a new direction?

I'm still an advocate of the bank idea, and I think it would go well with some of Synthesis' suggestions, rather than being an alternative.  Make wealth harder to hoard and harder to accumulate.

Another thing I'd like to see is the value of raw materials lowered and the value of crafts increased.  There are so few independent merchants as it is, because quite frankly, you don't need a merchant to get rich anymore.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 02:00:59 PM
musashi, we can go back and forth with hypothetical scenarios all damn day without proving anything.  You wanted examples, I gave them to you, I don't agree with your counter-examples.

My only concern is that you seem to think that commoners dropping 12-15k is perfectly normal.  Again, that's the entire problem in the first place.

The banking thing is one possible way to go about it, but I'm hardly married to that idea. Anyone else have any ideas along those lines? I think that in all the previous threads about the game's economy we've beat the "make resources more finite" and "let low play time people make automatic money" ideas to death and not gone anywhere.

Why not explore options in a new direction?

I'm still an advocate of the bank idea, and I think it would go well with some of Synthesis' suggestions, rather than being an alternative.  Make wealth harder to hoard and harder to accumulate.

Another thing I'd like to see is the value of raw materials lowered and the value of crafts increased.  There are so few independent merchants as it is, because quite frankly, you don't need a merchant to get rich anymore.

I don't feel like commoners "dropping" 15k is normal, no.  I think it is acceptable that they have 15k to fall back on if they are beset by hard times, though.  There is a difference between having the ability to casually drop a 15,000 'sid bribe and the ability to replace your 6,000 'sid set of gear if a burglar steals it all while you're dressed in your civvies for the Fale party.

Trying to drop that much 'sid on a bribe just makes you look desperate, anyway.  Sort of thing that will get a fellow put in his place with a quickness.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 14, 2010, 02:04:53 PM
Here again, what you're saying is:

1.  You can never amass wealth
2.  You will always be poor, ha ha ha on you, my clanny can outspend you again
3.  Forget any dreams of owning anything of your own, just sit around the tavern all day gabbing with us
4.  Waaa waaa waaa, it's not fair, I have no sid of my own.

You know what?  Leave things the way they are, lots of people are enjoying it as it is.  When you finally wrap your head around the fact
that amassing wealth is not the know all end all, then your future characters will be better off because you at least have some idea of how
to make it.  In case noone has noticed, since the events of the HRPT, things have gotten a WHOLE LOT more expensive.  So let's keep the
status quo.  We shouldn't have to make everyone suffer so a few players can get the RP the way they want it.  Point is that it's working for everyone.
Focus on how to bring more people in than finding ways to push some of the playerbase away and limiting the number of new players that want to join up.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 02:05:36 PM
@ Synth: To clairfy on my end, I didn't mean to imply that it wouldn't be a pain at all no matter how much coin you had to carry, I meant, like you said, that how much of a pain it would be, would be contingent upon how much coin you were amassing, and that would serve as a self regulating tool for keeping the commoners from amassing more money than the ultra rich, reguardless of how much time someone has to dedicate to playing.

It seemed to me like you were suggesting that even having to carry a large or two around would be so bad that a character would be unable to function. That was what I was disagreeing with.

But make it more than a large or two and unless you're a half giant or a mul, I agree that it will start to seriously be a detriment to your PC in terms of encumberence.

So I agree that in such a situation, how much is too much would be entirely dependant on the character in question and how clever or inconvieniced they were willing to be. I'd be alright with that, because I think that it would keep that disparity between high and low play times to a minimum.

.... and ianmartin please stop with the strawman/trolling. No one supports the positions you're crying out against.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 14, 2010, 03:02:50 PM
Here again, what you're saying is:

1.  You can never amass wealth
2.  You will always be poor, ha ha ha on you, my clanny can outspend you again
3.  Forget any dreams of owning anything of your own, just sit around the tavern all day gabbing with us
4.  Waaa waaa waaa, it's not fair, I have no sid of my own.

I think that's an exaggeration.  Clanned PCs are poor too, poorer than most independents.  Also, you can still amass quite a bit of wealth as an independent, even still.  If coin weight is an issue, see:

One concern that was raised by someone (I forget who) is that coins get too weighty to carry around in large sums.  If this is indeed the case (and I'm still not convinced that it is), the staff should easily be able to modify currency weight to balance things a little.  This could even be justified in-game by the introduction of a new denomination of obsidian coin.

You know what?  Leave things the way they are, lots of people are enjoying it as it is.  When you finally wrap your head around the fact
that amassing wealth is not the know all end all, then your future characters will be better off because you at least have some idea of how
to make it.  In case noone has noticed, since the events of the HRPT, things have gotten a WHOLE LOT more expensive.  So let's keep the
status quo.  We shouldn't have to make everyone suffer so a few players can get the RP the way they want it.  Point is that it's working for everyone.
Focus on how to bring more people in than finding ways to push some of the playerbase away and limiting the number of new players that want to join up.

Again, I don't see how this is accurate.  You're right in that amassing wealth is not the know-all, end-all, but I doubt this will make everyone "suffer".  It will make things harder, sure, but independents will still be able to accrue wealth, parade around wearing unique, expensive objects, buy silt skimmers, etc.  It just becomes harder than it is now.  Contrary to what you say, it is NOT working for everyone, because it keeps on coming up every month.

Also, I doubt it may have an affect on new players that want to join up, seeing as they aren't the ones reaping the benefits of having a massive bank account;  it's the seasoned players who know where to greb for X or what ingredients are needed to craft Y who are getting rich.

The problem with the status quo is that a lot of people are comfortable with playing filthy-rich (by Zalanthan standards) independent characters, which shouldn't be happening with the frequency that it does now.  As a result, clans aren't nearly as attractive as they should be, and the game world really isn't benefiting from everyone being rich; rich PCs are benefiting from getting rich.

These interactions are typically much more expensive than they are for clanned characters.  For example, I had a Tuluki templar confiscate well over 5,000 'sid in coins/gear.  Average payment to keep Guild burglars out of your apartment has been around 500 'sid, although perhaps I've been over-paying in the attempt to placate them.  Average bribe to a templar: 500 'sid per templar every few weeks. Average bribe to a militia PC:  100 'sid whenever they want it (this can be more expensive than bribing a templar if you have a militia PC with high playtimes). Price of a Byn contract: 1,000 'sid minimum, usually, and it goes up from there.  Price of a difficult/risky assassination contract: 5,000 'sid.

I fail to see how this is typical or common.  And losing five thousand coins should be a hard hit.

If banks were abolished, where would people find the coins to pay off large sums like this?  Carrying around 5,000+ coins is foolish, and yes, coins are heavy.  5,000 coins in inventory drops my current PC from "light" encumbrance to "heavy, but manageable."  Another 5,000 to VERY heavy.  Another 5,000 to unbelievably heavy (at or over maximum encumbrance).

Coin weight can be adjusted, if it is truly unbalanced (see above).

Yes, those are large amounts of 'sid as far as the documentation is concerned, but they aren't large amounts when you consider the ACTUAL state of the ACTUAL economy.  The price of a single meal that will fill you from "a little hungry" to "full" in a tavern, with enough booze to get you buzzed is around 200 coins in Allanak (and actually, buying scrab steaks in the Gaj is currently cheaper than buying just about anything at all from the grocer).  A single piece of armor in Allanak can run you over 500 'sid.  500 to replace a mount stolen by a d-elf.  When one of my previous characters had his matched set of armor stolen by a burglar, it cost over 6,000 'sid to buy it back from Salarr.  Now, according to the documentation, these sorts of sums are ridiculous.  6,000 'sid to replace a slightly-better-than-average set of mercenary armor is just plain retarded, when the "average" Zalanthan supposedly gets by on 300 'sid a month...if the docs were strictly correct, it would take an average mercenary's entire pay for 20 months (7 IC years) to get a full set of decent gear.  Also, as a PC, you better be eating only 1.5 times a month, or you're screwed, according to the docs!  Furthermore, my current PC spends about 1,100 'sid every 125 IC days just on RENT.  That comes out to...I don't know...around 400 I have to spend to keep rent updated every time I log in and bother to pay.  If I decided to stop hunting, grebbing, and crafting, the 15k I have in the bank would be gone or drastically depleted within an IC year.

It sounds like your character had/has a pretty cushy life.  By all accounts, the scenario above really doesn't represent the average independent commoner, or even the average independent PC.  Keeping up such a lifestyle should require a lot of work.  Also, losing six thousand 'sid's worth of equipment in a theft should be pretty devastating.  I do agree, though, that things are pretty expensive, in general; expensive to the point that most clanned PCs need to pick up secondary jobs.

The main pain in the ass is that it will tightly bind together crafting/grebbing activity with expenses.  Currently, I can greb up 5,000 or so 'sid in a couple of RL weeks then just chill and do whatever the fuck I feel like doing (like actually interacting with other PCs) for the next RL month or so.  Without a bank, every time I log in, I will have to greb/craft/etc....then go pay my rent to get rid of the excess, then go purchase food immediately to get rid of the excess, then go pay my other miscellaneous expenses immediately to get rid of the excess, and if Templars A and B and Militia PCs A, B, and C and the Guild guy and the Red Fang guy aren't online at the time, I'm stuck holding a fucking fat sack of cash until I can catch up to them, which may take a RL week or more.  Is that concrete enough for you?

How is carrying five thousand coins impossible without banks?  You should, as you say, still be able to "do whatever the fuck you feel like doing".  Fifteen thousand may be a different story.

It is clunky because it imprecisely targets the source of the problem.  That's pretty much all I meant by that.  It's like chemotherapy vs. surgery:  if you have a solid tumor in an easily accessible location with no important anatomical structures nearby, there is no reason to start giving systemic chemotherapy to get rid of it, when you can go in and surgically remove the damn thing.

The "problem" as I have seen it stated is that some folks have more coins (and can make more coins) than some folks think they should have/should be able to generate.  As I stated previously, the anti-bank fix does nothing to change this, the fundamental basis of the complaint.  Instead, it imposes a pain-in-the-ass (see above) restriction on the entire playerbase in the vain hope that folks will decide to stop making tons of 'sid.  And I believe I've previously explained why the anti-bank suggestion will fail at that, as well.

As you've pointed out yourself, having a lot of coins is a pain in the ass without banks.  I think it succeeds in limiting the amount of accrued wealth pretty nicely.

As to the ability of nobles/templars to employ people, the Staff have never stated an intent to shoehorn players into employment by any clan or House.  If anything, the addition of poop scraping, cotton picking, obsidian mining, and salt foraging signals a desire to maintain the independent, unclanned character as a viable concept.  If your GMH Agent or noble or templar can't convince people to join the clan with 'sids, COME UP WITH SOMETHING BETTER.  If you're a Salarri, offer people free badass armor.  If you're a Kadian, offer them...well...yeah, nobody really gives a crap about what Kadius sells, so maybe you had better stick to the coins.  If you're Kuraci, give 'em a free tent and a brick of spice (tents are stupid cheap and easy to craft, btw, so this is nothing more than an opportunity cost for a real merchant).  I mean, seriously...the list goes on and on and on.  There are a million things in this game more important than 'sid, and really I'm tired of trying to come up with compelling examples of all of them when it's obvious some people in this thread are merely being obstinate for the sake of rhetorical advantage.

You're also downplaying the importance of wealth.  People argue that, even with coin, you still can't go up against nobility/the templarate.  I tend to agree with that.  You can, however, afford 5,000 'sid assassination contracts.  You can also obtain a lot of privileges that your betters (noble house/merchant house servants) cannot.  I agree with you, that people shouldn't be boxed into clans, but it doesn't change the fact that there is still a fundamental balance issue caused by the hoarding and easy access (which, admittedly, the latter isn't addressed by this change) of wealth.

I agree that making 'sid harder to earn would be a more worthwhile solution, Synthesis, but it simply isn't viable.  You're proposing that hundreds, possibly thousands of objects have values tweaked, versus maybe six lines of code.  Also, it has the benefit of not excluding casual players.  I'm not saying that the change wouldn't be without drawbacks, but it still seems like the drawbacks pale in comparison to the benefits.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 14, 2010, 03:35:18 PM
I think it is acceptable that they have 15k to fall back on if they are beset by hard times, though.

The last time I checked any commoner is supposed to BE beset by hard times.  Isn't this a post-apocolyptic, resources-rare, gritty, low-fantasy RPI mud?

Having enough coin to buy a replacement mount should, I think, make the average Joe/Jane feel quite wealthy.
 
And if you argue, well PCs aren't the "average Joe/Jane" are you saying that it's alright for elves to ride mounts (they aren't the average elf) or that it's socially acceptable a human PC to have romantic relations with an elf PC (they aren't average, either).

In my understanding of the game it clearly isn't right to have a commoner have 15K to fall back on.
 
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 14, 2010, 03:59:46 PM
You guys are a little late to the party.  Addressed, re-addressed, and 2.re-addressed.

PC != average
game != broken
1.perception != 2.perception
common?

Really, I'm a little disappointed at continually being faced with the same arguments I've already attacked, when they're only restated in different terms.

Calling red vermilion doesn't constitute additional evidence on behalf of your case.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 14, 2010, 04:03:08 PM
It keeps coming up as an issue because a few people keep bringing it up.  What's two or three compared to 70, unreal if you ask me.

If you ask me they need to stop worrying about what person X is doing and focus on their own stuff.  I don't care how much sid you have.
To me it's irrelevant.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 14, 2010, 04:12:35 PM
Yeah, and I think Synth and I have already beat this one to death pretty good.

The "no banks for commoners" idea is out there, and I think both sides of the issue, for and against, have been expressed about as well as they are going to ever be.

What I'd like to see now are some other ideas about how we might be able to close that schism between the amount of money a 40 hours a week indie can make vs. a 40 hour a week clanned.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 14, 2010, 04:19:39 PM
I already gave you one, musashi, give clannies apartments as part of the deal instead of just a barracks.  Honestly, I think that clannies getting apartments is stupid most of the time, but for some silly reason, everyone needs 5 apartments, clanned or not.

Edit to add: this would ideally free up some apartments for other people, too, if those clanned dorks didn't feel the need to get that one last apartment.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Cutthroat on April 14, 2010, 04:24:37 PM
Another one that's already been mentioned somewhere:
All the NPCs involved in NPC jobs should have a IC daily limit in coins about what they are willing to give to a PC.

For example, say the limit in the saltyard is X coins a day.
- Amos goes to the saltyard, sells X coins' worth of salt.
- Saltyard person gives X coins to Amos.
- Amos comes back with more salt.
- Saltyard person tells them to come back tomorrow - if he floods the saltyard with salt, there won't be room for any more salt.
- Malik comes over with X coins worth of salt and sells it. Malik's limits are not affected by Amos' selling.

Repeat for mining, cotton picking, dung, other jobs.

Also, perhaps the amount of money that NPCs pay for those things should be adjusted downward.

And lastly, adjust the prices for commonly crafted goods that go to shops.

With changes like this, I think independents will be able to make enough money to keep them afloat. If limits were around 150-200 coins on those coded jobs per IC day, that's way more than enough to buy food and water (if you are even buying food and water), lodging, and supplies/mounts.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 14, 2010, 04:25:08 PM
You guys are a little late to the party.  Addressed, re-addressed, and 2.re-addressed.

PC != average

Just to be clear, because I'm a little slow, I guess.
You believe:  PC's are NOT average for the game world.

Does this imply that PCs may behave in a way contrary to the documentation?  (That is, loving half-breeds, roundears mating with pointears, elves riding mounts...)

And I suspect that you believe that PCs should hold to the docs for such examples, why do you draw the line at massive amounts of obsidian?  
 
Frankly, if you have too much sid to carry around with you, as a commoner, I suspect that's an indication you are not paying attention to the docs, but you know my take.  I just don't _get_ your logic and reasoning beyond "it's fun" and "it's what I want to do with my characters."
 
I know you are smarter than that and I know you play your characters well, first-hand, but I'm obviously not clear on your thinking here and a I really want to understand it because , otherwise I have to think you're just another WOW player hanging out on a mud.  And I want to believe that's not true.
 
I also want to believe that a lot of your argument isn't based around the bitterness of a past unsatisfactory <not to be mentioned> experience as a clan lead.

So, Synth, I'm honestly begging you to tell me why you think a commoner should have 15k laying around at his disposal because when my characters walk the street and look at the world, I see something completely different.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 14, 2010, 04:27:07 PM
PC != average
game != broken
1.perception != 2.perception
common?

Really, I'm a little disappointed at continually being faced with the same arguments I've already attacked, when they're only restated in different terms.

Calling red vermilion doesn't constitute additional evidence on behalf of your case.

What I was trying to get at, politely, is that you haven't provided anything solid; just some atypical (by player character standards, not commoner standards) anecdotal scenarios in which you were throwing around money like it was sand.  Staff members and players alike have indicated that there is something wrong with the distribution of wealth, as it currently stands.  You may not like it (probably because you reap the benefits of a broken system), but it doesn't change the fact that this is currently the case.

Things have been restated for you, necessarily, because you've been ignoring them and using verbal subterfuge in an attempt to be persuasive in your opposition, rather than actually addressing the crux of the issue.

I'm leaving this thread as it is, for the time being; I'm not going to take part in a war of attrition.  I've made my points in my prior posts, and they still stand.  The rest is up to the staff.

(Edited to be a little nicer.)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: netflix on April 14, 2010, 04:40:18 PM
I already gave you one, musashi, give clannies apartments as part of the deal instead of just a barracks.  Honestly, I think that clannies getting apartments is stupid most of the time, but for some silly reason, everyone needs 5 apartments, clanned or not.

Actually, that would be an interesting notion. And making it so that the rooms (save perhaps those of PCs of sufficient rank) don't have locks, which would mean there'd be very little added adminstrative work for PC leaders and clan staff, and would permit PC leaders to gain access to said grunts apartments if need be (and before people cry out about privacy and so, no, you don't have any rights). These rooms, save for the ranking PC rooms, could be "nice", since there's a level of control over the tennants, though would certainly be tiny.

It makes sense, in a way. One thing I've always wondered about, when you have, say, Salarr, with say, 2,000 employees in a city. Are all of these 2,000 people expected to be living in the estate's single bunk room? Just how large are these estates? Does the GMH expect their employees to live elsewhere, when the very cheapest of apartments cost -more- then most of them make?

Call it a dorm. Smack a clanned guard on the door akin to the various estates and barracks already established (said barracks being upgraded into dorms themselves). And the burglars scream out about not being able to get in? Well, regular apartments are in such high demand, it sometimes being impossible to find one after weeks of looking, I doubt the burglars are going to find a drop in business. Since most House employees typically keep all their valuables in barracks lockers anyway.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on April 14, 2010, 04:42:23 PM
Any criminal/corrupt politician worth his weight in ssnd knows better than to overcharge when extorting for two reasons:

1) Charging too much drives victims away-- meaning you won't see another coin out of them unless you decide to chase them down.

2) Killing victims that don't have the money to pay up = 1 less person paying up.

I see it leading to criminal elements charging less to indies, and perhaps focusing more on organizations and clans, 'cause that's where the real money's gonna be at if the change goes in.

That's what my experiences in Zalanthan Organized Crime  has taught me at least.

I don't disagree with any of that, but there is, by necessity of lack of complete information, a disconnect between what the criminal player thinks is fair (i.e. will not increase the desire to spam<whatever> for the victim) and what the effects of the encounter on the victim will actually be.

Said criminal player would wind up thoroughly unsuccessful.

The main problem I've seen with the economy thus far, is that there's an NPC organization that will hold an unlimited number of coins completely safe and unable to be stolen from. An organization that will do this free of charge and for any nobody who walks up and drops coins on the table.

Why is this a problem, exactly?  When Nenyuk takes your coins, they aren't just sitting on them and doing nothing.  Ostensibly, they are paying master artisans and their House employees with it all, and using it to turn massive amounts of profits by investing your coins in whatever their projects are.  They're using it to keep their favorite templars happy, using it to pay the city-states to hold on to all that property they rent out, and using it to keep the criminals off their backs.  They're the most ingenious Greater Merchant House in the Known World:  they don't even have to SELL ANYTHING to get people to give them their money (for at least the half of their business model that concerns the banks).

It's a problem because they never fail! They will keep your coins 100% guaranteed safe, for free, no charge, even for your filthy tribal, or 'Rinthi rat, they will lock those coins away and nothing will ever happen to them, ever, no matter what, those coins will be there when you need them.

They never make bad investments.

They never make mistakes.

And  when the last time there's been a project worth investing in on Zalanthas? Nothing really goes on that they could benefit from by investing in! Even in the VNPC and NPC world, I haven't seen much of anything Nenyuk could stand to gain from as far as investing goes, except maybe trying to rebuild city-states-- but really, why would a highlord need to take out a Nenyuki loan when there are so many slaves? Nenyuk doesn't seem to have any income (I could be missing something huge here, I dunno), and if they're paying artisans, paying house employees, paying for land rents, and paying templars, they're doing so with -your- money. Which means maybe every now and then, you'd see a difference-- but you don't. Ever.

I personally would love to see the economy based more around trading/bartering rather than raw coinage, for commoners at least. Couple that with the lack of a free iron vault available to anyone and everyone, and I could see things balancing out fine.

This isn't about where the majority stands, it's about a known problem that needs a solution that makes sense.

Again, known problem perceived by some.  I simply do not agree that it is a problem.  The fact that people have a "free vault..." so what?  What exactly is BAD about that, beyond the obvious "aw, it makes it tough for my burglar?"  Yes, they can amass tons of coins if they want, but what are they going to do with them?  A ton of coins for your average independent is like having an stockpile full of bullets, but no guns to shoot them from.

And moving to a pure barter system is just stupid.  It might make a neat April Fool's joke next year, though.

A "free vault that doesn't seem to generate any income whatsoever but is still able to pay shit off and survive as a business" simply isn't realistic, and it allows people who should not be getting filthy rich, to get filthy rich. In the game world as-is, 1000 coins should be considered -alot- of money, but I've seen people-- hell, I've even been guilty of having a character that would scoff at a number like that for payment because he had so much saved up in his bank account.

It doesn't matter if they can't do anything with the huge wealth of coins, it's the principal that they're able to save up that much in the first place. Like that armor you brought up earlier that cost 6000 coins to replace-- I don't think any commoner would simply have that much on hand! If that armor was your character's bread and butter, that should have devastated him! That's like in real-life, if your house gets burned down and you don't have insurance. You don't just think, "Derp, I'll just reach into my handy-dandy bank account and get another one."  

And would you mind telling me how bartering, a system that's worked effectively for thousands of years, would be stupid in a world like Armageddon? I never even said anything about a "pure" barter system, I just meant for bartering to be a bit more prevalent in lower classes. A bartering system would also help you with your coin weight problem, Syn. You could just buy a few -really- expensive jewelery pieces and use those as bargaining chips.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Taven on April 14, 2010, 06:42:11 PM
I already gave you one, musashi, give clannies apartments as part of the deal instead of just a barracks.  Honestly, I think that clannies getting apartments is stupid most of the time, but for some silly reason, everyone needs 5 apartments, clanned or not.

Actually, that would be an interesting notion. And making it so that the rooms (save perhaps those of PCs of sufficient rank) don't have locks, which would mean there'd be very little added adminstrative work for PC leaders and clan staff, and would permit PC leaders to gain access to said grunts apartments if need be (and before people cry out about privacy and so, no, you don't have any rights). These rooms, save for the ranking PC rooms, could be "nice", since there's a level of control over the tennants, though would certainly be tiny.

It makes sense, in a way. One thing I've always wondered about, when you have, say, Salarr, with say, 2,000 employees in a city. Are all of these 2,000 people expected to be living in the estate's single bunk room? Just how large are these estates? Does the GMH expect their employees to live elsewhere, when the very cheapest of apartments cost -more- then most of them make?

Call it a dorm. Smack a clanned guard on the door akin to the various estates and barracks already established (said barracks being upgraded into dorms themselves). And the burglars scream out about not being able to get in? Well, regular apartments are in such high demand, it sometimes being impossible to find one after weeks of looking, I doubt the burglars are going to find a drop in business. Since most House employees typically keep all their valuables in barracks lockers anyway.

I thought this was a nifty idea and that this thread is already splitting out in a ton of different directions, so I made a split-thread for this.

Split thread on the idea of Dorms (http://www.zalanthas.org/gdb/index.php/topic,38532.0.html)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: LauraMars on April 14, 2010, 07:35:25 PM
Um, I'm late to the party, and this is a really long and involved thread, but I just thought I'd state that as a casual and infrequent player of Armageddon, the idea of my banked money going away while I'm offline because of "fees" is really annoying.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 14, 2010, 07:42:45 PM
I don't recall reading any posts including monthly bank fees or anything that would occur while you were offline.

I had suggested that there be deposit and withdrawal fees, for anyone trying to use a branch in a city where they're not a citizen. Musashi's idea is to have all unclanned commoners default to not being allowed bank accounts at all (and I believe he did include room for extenuating circumstances/special permissions from the local templarate or something like that in one of his posts).

There were other suggestions involving Nenyuk as well but I don't remember any of them mentioning someone losing money due to fees incurred while not logged into the game.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 14, 2010, 08:51:01 PM
Actually, I made such a suggestion.  :-[  Sorry, LauraMars!
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Old Kank on April 14, 2010, 09:05:36 PM
We are discussing some options on the IDB

I'd be interested in hearing some staff thoughts on the greater 'economy' issue.  Minor unbalanced item pricing aside, do most of the staff feel that there is a problem with the economy, and if so, what do they feel the problem is?

I don't think there's any question as to whether or not the economy is off-kilter, but I'm unconvinced that it's a major issue and not just a vocal minority on the GDB.  The availability of a loose economy allows players to create the kind of character they want - players have the choice between playing a beggar or taking a few slight risks and "gearing up" their character into something akin to a middle-class range before they join the Byn - but the power structure is set up in such a way that only the most exceptional independent commoner can move up the societal ladder and have a meaningful impact on the game.

That being said, I've always wanted to see the economy fixed, but I think doing so will require changes that would constitute a major overhaul in the game.  With Arm 2.0 somewhere on the horizon, is it worth pursuing or is it better to just ride it out until Arm 1.0 concludes?

OK
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: jmordetsky on April 14, 2010, 09:45:47 PM
Being unclanned you can make way more money then if you were clanned. But to some extent, life unclanned is far more dangerous. I think we see 1-2 PCs per real 6mo period that are successful indies. I could be wrong there. However, if we're going to start talking about how to make clan life more attractive (which seems to be the point of the Dorms) then perhaps we should really be talking about how to make unclanned life more difficult.

The problem as I see it are the de-risked areas where one can make tons of money as an indy - mining, logging, salting, poop shoveling. There is no danger here. Now, I'm not advocating even more uber NPCs which I think would just isolate the populations to the cities and make casual play less of an option (clan life with no clannies for example is really boring in an uber dangerous desert environment).  But there is one place in the game world where being in a clan is without a doubt the most attractive options you have and it has nothing to do with NPCs and everything to do with PCs. The Rinth.

The reason this is because at any point in time if any Guild or Elf tribe PCs become significantly powerful they have free reign in the rinth to tax, torment and otherwise harass you. You're either in the gang, or your being exploited by the gang and this is the law of the land in the Rinth and a pattern that plays itself out with Rinth players over and over.

My personal belief is that the success of indies monetarily is tied to the lack of this fact in the main cities. An interesting approach might be to encourage abuse of independent PCs by clanned-PCs so that clanned life is more attractive (like gangs). For example, what if Tor Scorpions could tax you if you were protected by a house, noble merchant or otherwise? Or perhaps a guild-like raider clan is needed to step it up and start beating on indies more whereas large houses could pay protection fees for their employees or present serious threat.

Just a thought. Though - I should admit as playing an indy character right now, life is certainly not easy and I think this characters level of "survival" can only really be attributed to the fact that he had clan backing early in life and got the training he needed to live.



Title: Re: Economy
Post by: brytta.leofa on April 14, 2010, 10:15:08 PM
I'll just throw this out there: I still don't know how to get rich in Armageddon.

The most affluent character I've ever had achieved his highest bank balance when he finally received four months of back pay from his GMH employer.  Synthesis' 15K figure would have been unfathomable wealth for any of mine, even those that have lived moderately long lives.

But I'm a pretty casual player.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 14, 2010, 10:32:57 PM
Some of the 'easier' ways to make money are veritably risk free, but they also generate a piddly amount of coins.  (Cotton picking, anyone tried it?)

Some of the 'easier' ways to make money are not low-risk.  Those tasks and my thoughts on them:
  • Hunting - Some hunters have a hard time killing anything and/or skinning anything right after being accepted into the game. and playing an indie hunter could possibly be made too hard for someone to do without metagaming if it didn't have the returns it can have now.
  • Salting - Too low-risk for the returns.  My suggestion, increase the number of NPC baddies.
  • Mining - Similar to salting, but at least it has a cap on how much can be sold.

Couldn't agree more... although... there IS a limit with how much salt can be sold. At least to the people who buy it. The exception to that is the person who buys the fairly rare (maybe 6-8 out of about 40/pieces) kind, which isn't the normal people anyhow. Trust me, I've had the salt-buying people tell me they bought enough salt for the day... after knowing someone went in and sold them X amount.

Let's leave things how they are, if you want to live a life of poverty, then do so and be as 'realistic' as you want and do what you wish.
I also know that thinking outside of the box of what you can and can't do is what created the BYN, created the Silver Ginka and other
great works and organizations in the game.  Having a mindset that we are all doomed to live lives of poverty and mediocrity doesn't help
the advancement of the game one iota, neither does sitting in a tavern for hours on end drinking or fake drinking and talking about the
high prices of furniture and rugs and fire insurance for ladybugs.  Personally, I find THAT unrealistic, especially when you're a city guard or
what have you.  WE define how the game runs and the documentation is there as a GUIDE not as a BIBLE.  To me, staying poor and
wanting others to stay poor is simply pushing a slave mentality on the rest of those who wish to have some form of standing/respect and
perhaps a little empire of their own.

First, I totally agree with this.

Second, the problem is with people with high PLAYTIMES who do these things and farm resources, as was stated by a staff member, when you have people of equal, moderate playtimes, everything equals out reasonably.

So to change things in such a way that it forces someone to play a poorer character is also shifting the game balance. But it's shifting the game balance to force people to spend what little playtimes they have doing, X, Y, and Z with code to scrape by, rather than encouraging interaction. And the people who farm resources and hoard... are still going to do that.

WE define how the game runs and the documentation is there as a GUIDE not as a BIBLE.  To me, staying poor and wanting others to stay poor is simply pushing a slave mentality on the rest of those who wish to have some form of standing/respect and perhaps a little empire of their own.

I disagree.  We define the details, the names and the places and where and how the battles happen but on a basic level it is the staff that define how the game runs, I don't think you'd argue with that.  They set up the systems and players use the systems as a framework to role-play out their character's lives.  The documentation is a baseline of how things are and should be, it provides the foundation.  I think that when the reality of gameplay doesn't in fact match up the documentation, this a signal that something is wrong.  I think that the problem is figuring out what that problem is and addressing that.

Many of us are resistant to changes, but sometimes they aren't as bad as we think.

The staff defines the IC economy by the prices set for things and the sid you earn for things.

A day grebbing salt: 150-400 sid
2 Kalan fruits: 80 sid
2 skins of water: 80-120 sid
Mount ticket: 20 sid

So that's a possible profit margin of: -30 - -70 (If you make the least listed)
or
60-100 sid (If you make 400 sid)

I think clans should have 'free apartments' in their compounds.  Have them accessible from outside the compound.  They are only free to those clanned for that GMH/noble.  This gives them better places to live than the communal barracks.  You KNOW one of the biggest reasons that clanned bitch about this is because of how much they have to work for an apartment, because they all have to have one.  Hell, maybe more than one, some of these people.  (I hate you people that get like a half dozen apartments with ONE character, by the way.  Oh, and, "I have too much stuff for one apartment," bullshit?  Yeah, you have all that stupid trash why?)  There, now that's a proper coin sink.

I would personally love to see this for clans. Especially if clan guards guarded it, and it had better locks than regular apartments. As to the people who take up 6 apartments out of 50ish apartments when there's about 265 people who log on every week: That's bullshit, guy, I hate your apartment hoarding asshattery.

Serious props for having Terry Pratchett in your sig Boggins, btw. Just noticed that.

Well I think that putting a cap on the amount of money someone is able to attain could be a good way to go about it. I men we do that with skills and it seems to work out just fine. But I don't like the idea of a hard cap. Like, just a flat: You can only have x amount of money maximum.

But something on a sliding scale where the more money you aquire, the more challenges you face for having it, would be a step in the right direction.

The banking thing is one possible way to go about it, but I'm hardly married to that idea. Anyone else have any ideas along those lines? I think that in all the previous threads about the game's economy we've beat the "make resources more finite" and "let low play time people make automatic money" ideas to death and not gone anywhere.

Why not explore options in a new direction?


.... I'm hardly one to pick sides here... but what about the elves?

City elf is already a horrendously unpopular and underplayed choice for people... but now lets make them carry all the coin they own on them... like basic gear doesn't already leave them encumbered enough with a skin or two of water?

It sounds like your character had/has a pretty cushy life.  By all accounts, the scenario above really doesn't represent the average independent commoner, or even the average independent PC.  Keeping up such a lifestyle should require a lot of work.  Also, losing six thousand 'sid's worth of equipment in a theft should be pretty devastating.  I do agree, though, that things are pretty expensive, in general; expensive to the point that most clanned PCs need to pick up secondary jobs.


Bolded for emphasis. I think that adding in apartments or individual barrack-style rooms for clanned players and increasing their pay to, say, double what it is now, would do a lot to fix things. If not wholly.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Vanth on April 14, 2010, 10:44:46 PM
We are discussing some options on the IDB

I'd be interested in hearing some staff thoughts on the greater 'economy' issue.  Minor unbalanced item pricing aside, do most of the staff feel that there is a problem with the economy, and if so, what do they feel the problem is?


90% of the time when we find someone with 15k in the bank who we think shouldn't have, it's because of those "minor unbalanced items" which take one of two forms.  Either 1) a crafting recipe that is way too lucrative, like a 500 sid return on a 5 sid investment or 2) a merchant that has been set up incorrectly and either doesn't charge enough, or pays out too much.

So, when these instances crop up it gives us an opportunity to find out where the gaping holes in the economy are and plug them up.  It's inevitable that they're there, when a game has been around for almost 15 years and has probably had about 100 staffers over that time, there are going to be inconsistencies in how things are implemented.

There are many other things about the economy which could be changed - made harsher, or more realistic, or more interesting, or more dynamic, or whatever.  Those are the kinds of things that you guys brainstorm about here and that we also discuss on the staff board.  But 90% of the problem is the gaping holes, and that's also the easiest thing to fix, so that's where most of our energies go right now.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 15, 2010, 12:23:21 AM
But 90% of the problem is the gaping holes, and that's also the easiest thing to fix, so that's where most of our energies go right now.

Yes, sometimes I've even had the impression that someone is following me around, tweaking things to add difficultly or to be less frequent or generally just more of a hassle.

E.g. an easy climb that suddenly becomes impossible.

No offense, but I wish the staff would devote more time to putting new things (coded toys) into the game than taking things out.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 15, 2010, 12:30:50 AM
Yes, sometimes I've even had the impression that someone is following me around, tweaking things to add difficultly or to be less frequent or generally just more of a hassle.

E.g. an easy climb that suddenly becomes impossible.

No offense, but I wish the staff would devote more time to putting new things (coded toys) into the game than taking things out.

I bet that is an error of perception - finding patterns when ther are none.  But I, too, know that feeling.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunkkin on April 15, 2010, 12:44:16 AM
Yes, sometimes I've even had the impression that someone is following me around, tweaking things to add difficultly or to be less frequent or generally just more of a hassle.

E.g. an easy climb that suddenly becomes impossible.

No offense, but I wish the staff would devote more time to putting new things (coded toys) into the game than taking things out.

Random number generators are random.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Ashes on April 15, 2010, 12:51:15 AM
And sometimes you just can't find that damn foothold.

... And then you fall back into that pack of pissed-off Blackwing. <.<
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 15, 2010, 01:10:15 AM
Yes, sometimes I've even had the impression that someone is following me around, tweaking things to add difficultly or to be less frequent or generally just more of a hassle.

E.g. an easy climb that suddenly becomes impossible.

No offense, but I wish the staff would devote more time to putting new things (coded toys) into the game than taking things out.

Random number generators are random.


This is a case where it took an average of five tries. Then it became impossible. No number of tries would work.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 15, 2010, 01:17:30 AM
The immortals don't play against us, Salt Merchant, despite how it might feel.  I'm sure you know that - so why am I saying it?  It's a late night at work and I'm behind a darn firewall.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 15, 2010, 08:40:03 AM
Just a little food for thought on the coin to weight ratio ... I did a little test.

Wth a poor strength human who was fully clothed and already carrying everything he normally carries, I picked up 3000 coins and left them in my inventory.

I was at no problem before picking them up, and at easily manageable after picking them up.

So I seriously doubt any fighting classes who have presumably prioritzed strength would even notice a dip in their fighting abilities or in their ability to pack and unpack it off of mounts if they had to carry a few large around in a backpack (where it would weigh them down even less) .

After putting the coins in a pack, my encumberance dropped down to light. So I still really doubt it would be the end of the world if people had to carry their coins around with them. It would only start to be an issue when people were getting into the disparity we talked about earlier in the thread. I think your average player who isn't contributing to that problem would barely even notice.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 15, 2010, 09:04:32 AM
Encumbrance is only one part of the "pain in the ass" equation, musashi.

The individual components may be only small contributions, but taken altogether, they can amount to quite a large pain in the ass.  Sort of like encumbrance.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 15, 2010, 09:06:23 AM
Yes, sometimes I've even had the impression that someone is following me around, tweaking things to add difficultly or to be less frequent or generally just more of a hassle.

E.g. an easy climb that suddenly becomes impossible.

No offense, but I wish the staff would devote more time to putting new things (coded toys) into the game than taking things out.

Random number generators are random.


This is a case where it took an average of five tries. Then it became impossible. No number of tries would work.

We don't do this.  Ginka is a cold, heartless bitch without the help of staff.  We have a general "no harm" policy, and adjusting values or your skill on the fly for no reason whatsoever is contrary to this policy.

As for putting new things in vs taking things out, I don't think this is accurate.

Coded things added in the last 6 months

April:
Helper chat system, skill level aptitude added, nosave combat added

March:
Changes to darkness/storm navigation (improving/expanding direction sense skill), mount/dismount get command emotes, accents get a coded default for all starting locations

February:
Raise/lower get command emotes, merchants now show amount available in lists, things thrown can knock you off of your mount, you now sit when you fall off of a mount, karma players no longer repop, reroll undo added, mounts go on without you if you fall off

January:
Just bug fixes and stuff, but lots of NPCs/some objects/etc added to a region and not included (double-checked)

December:
Generic water seller fixes with syntax, added in several places, updated world to allow foraging ruins in certain areas, updated tax system in certain areas, 400+ rooms added (I consider these code, a hell of a lot of work was done), 50% increase in moons, 100% increase in volcanos, various scripts

November:
Tor Academy Doorguard Script updated, updated cotton fields (somewhat), autopayment script for clans -- bugfix, 30 rooms added by player initiative

October:
Autopayment system for clans added, Can't drag items into full rooms anymore

I can understand the feeling that one's cheese has been moved, but all of this other stuff is super awesome cheese.  I'd also like to point out that so far, the only move that staff have said they're making in relation to any of this discussion is a more proper enforcement of apartment weights (and even some improvements there with automatic furniture placement).
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 15, 2010, 09:06:55 AM
Just a little food for thought on the coin to weight ratio ... I did a little test.

Wth a poor strength human who was fully clothed and already carrying everything he normally carries, I picked up 3000 coins and left them in my inventory.

I was at no problem before picking them up, and at easily manageable after picking them up.

So I seriously doubt any fighting classes who have presumably prioritzed strength would even notice a dip in their fighting abilities or in their ability to pack and unpack it off of mounts if they had to carry a few large around in a backpack (where it would weigh them down even less) .

After putting the coins in a pack, my encumberance dropped down to light. So I still really doubt it would be the end of the world if people had to carry their coins around with them. It would only start to be an issue when people were getting into the disparity we talked about earlier in the thread. I think your average player who isn't contributing to that problem would barely even notice.

What about a poor strength elf?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 15, 2010, 09:36:59 AM
What about a poor strength elf?
Maybe elves that want to tote a bunch of stuff about should prioritize strength higher.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 15, 2010, 09:52:30 AM
Encumbrance is only one part of the "pain in the ass" equation, musashi.

The individual components may be only small contributions, but taken altogether, they can amount to quite a large pain in the ass.  Sort of like encumbrance.

It's the only part you identified I believe, so it's what I took a look at just to make sure I wasn't talking bunk and coins weren't actually way way heavier than I thought they were. Double checking myself, as it were.

We can't discuss something to any thoughtful degree when the details aren't spelled out. So if there are other components, please bring them up so they can be examined.

What about a poor strength elf?
Maybe elves that want to tote a bunch of stuff about should prioritize strength higher.

I don't play elves so someone else would have to test that out and see how badly an elf is hurting from carrying a few large around but I have a feeling that they are probably able to as well, just with perhaps a manageable encumberance instead of an easily manageable one. Like, shift everything up a catergory. But I admit that's only a guess on my part.

But to me, 2-3k sounds like plenty for anyone. Especially given how quickly you can earn that 2-3k back again after you've spent what you were carrying.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 15, 2010, 10:09:44 AM
An elf with below average strength wearing a fairly standard outfit and carrying about some stuff but not much starts at easily manageable, musashi, before picking up the coins.  Reconsider.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 15, 2010, 10:28:03 AM
I'm really not interested in hearing you explain how exactly the playerbase would manage to cope with the nuisance of not having banks.  The fact that we will be able to cope doesn't mean it won't be a nuisance.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 15, 2010, 10:29:28 AM
We're not removing banks.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 15, 2010, 10:30:47 AM
Yeah I was gonna say, no one has suggested we remove banks.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 15, 2010, 10:52:29 AM
Actually, someone did, Lizzie.  I think that's a bit of an extreme measure, but I think it contains an element of truth.  I would rather see there be multiple banks instead of one global bank like it is now.  I would rather there be currencies for each of the major cities and people have to convert funds to another currency (fees involved, of course).  I would rather there be charges on bank accounts, not a fee that hits once every period of time, but one that hits whenever coins are deposited or withdrawn.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 15, 2010, 11:06:48 AM
An elf with below average strength wearing a fairly standard outfit and carrying about some stuff but not much starts at easily manageable, musashi, before picking up the coins.  Reconsider.

Ouch. That's harsh.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 16, 2010, 10:10:11 AM
Its a broad range of items Nyr, and the fact that common NPC merchants treat them so valuable is silly because, honestly, most NPC's wouldn't realize them for what they are.  Should I still email you on this, or has my point been made?

Yes, e-mail me on it.

edit to add that I'd specifically like to know about which merchants offer these prices.

I've made adjustments to a few shops as well as some item values to better reflect the world.  If you notice anything supremely weird in your travels (specifically the three of you that e-mailed me with information), please let me know.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: ianmartin on April 16, 2010, 10:13:09 AM
Personally, in speaking with banks, I think the banks should charge 5% on each deposit and maybe 1% on each withdrawal.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 16, 2010, 10:51:05 AM
Personally, in speaking with banks, I think the banks should charge 5% on each deposit and maybe 1% on each withdrawal.
Either a withdrawl fee or a deposit fee, if you ask me.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 16, 2010, 11:31:23 AM
We're not removing banks.

Too bad, I think it's a good idea.  But it is what it is.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Old Kank on April 17, 2010, 02:40:50 PM
Here's a few ideas on how to fix the economy.  I'm throwing these out there as a unified solution, so most of these ideas may not hold much water on their own but together I think it could work, and I think they would require a minimal amount of new code.

1.  Make hunger/thirst obsolete in cities/camps.

Before you start lighting up your flame-throwers and crying heresy, hear me out.  Hunger and thirst punishes players for playing frequently.  As long as that remains true, you have to have a way for players to convert time played into money or food/water, and that's what caused the whole problem to begin with.  This was fixed for clan members years ago; all I'm suggesting is that if we want to stem the tide of money in the game, we should do the same for independent characters.

There are plenty of ways to do this, but I suggest:

2. Change most shop-keepers so that they don't buy from players.

Again, heresy, I know.  The idea that almost any item should be able to be sold for some kind of profit has always struck me as a video-game artifact that had no real place in Zalanthas.  If the GMH are all about high-quality goods, then why would they ever buy shoddily-made goods from any elf off the street?  They aren't a fence or a pawn-shop. 

This would immediately suck a lot of money out of the game, so here are a few caveats to make this work:

3. Set up "newbie" shops.

It seems there's been some resistance to this idea for years, but I think its time has come.  Unless you plan on playing a beggar or a 'rinther, it's gotten incredibly difficult to gear up a character right out of char gen.  If you buy the cheapest arms/armor available, you can usually manage to cover the soft spots - head, neck and body - for under 500 'sids.  But throw in the mandatory hooded cloak, a sword, a shield, and another item or two, and your character is broke.  Good luck trying to get starting gear if you set aside your 300 'sid Byn fee, or the 400 'sid price of a mount, and god help you if you want to play an archer in Allanak.


4. Adjust the value of goods.

This falls in line with what's already been going on, but I'm proposing it be done for the items that have an unlimited supply.


5. Create jobs that have value over time.

Instead of jobs where time-involved=money, create jobs where time-passed=money, and allow money earned to be re-invested into the job for higher profits later down the road.  Rather than keeping their money in banks, most indie/commoner PCs should be keeping their money tied up in their job, spending their income on making the job more valuable or more reliable.  For example, you could use the apartment code and the 'sid mining code to create a Zalanthan version of FarmVille. 

Allow players to rent a plot of land and buy wool-producing escru to keep on that land.  Have the escru produce wool on a randomized, or timed schedule, but set it up in such a way that characters can shear and accumulate roughly 50 'sids worth of wool each RL day.  Allow a PC to make 350 'sids per RL week off a single escru, then charge the PC 300 'sids per week to rent the land.  If an escru sells for 500 'sids, then a player will have to save for roughly two months in order to buy a second escru.  As long as the first escru continues to pay the rent, the second escru will provide money for a third and fourth escru within the next month, and after 3-4 RL months, you can be playing a bona fide escru farmer making 1,000 'sid per RL month.  Then, because it's Armageddon and not Facebook, throw in diseases that kill the escru off if you have too many on a single plot of land, or the occasional gortok in the pens to keep players from sitting on a perpetual cash cow.

Here are some other jobs that could be added where players could accumulate wealth over time:
OK
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunkkin on April 17, 2010, 03:08:55 PM
You've made enough suggestions here, Old Kank, that I'm sure you'll find a few people to argue with every point.  However.  That was a great post with excellent food for thought.  Well done. 

Also:  Escru farming = win
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 17, 2010, 03:40:59 PM
For chalton leather being such a common thing in Allanak, it seems very hard to get ahold of as a crafting material.  I think Old Kank's suggestion kills two birds with one stone!
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sephiroto on April 17, 2010, 03:50:23 PM
Stuff.

Great suggestions.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 17, 2010, 04:30:55 PM
I like the suggesons as well.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Rhyden on April 17, 2010, 04:36:53 PM
I like the suggesons as well.

Especially this.

Here are some other jobs that could be added where players could accumulate wealth over time:
  • Chalton lizard farming, just like escru farming except maybe they produce eggs instead of wool.
  • Wheat farms.  You rent a plot of land and plant a few bushels of wheat, let it grow for a few IG weeks, harvest and mill the wheat, then you turn around and dump your profits back into buying more wheat.
  • Land lords.  For an astronomical sum of 10,000 'sids, let players invest in apartments and become land lords that reap a share of profits off each apartment unit rented out.  In a perfect market, land lords could deal with (or ignore) the criminal element and use that as incentive for other players to stay there, instead of someone else's apartment.
  • Bar maids.  Again, using the apartment code, let one or two players rent access to the back room of taverns, where a special NPC shop could be set up to either buy old glass bottles or to sell special alcohols.  PC barmaids could collect used mugs and bottles and return them for a small profit, or they could sell alcohol from Vennant/Clint's special stock.
  • Spice traps.  Rather than risk life and limb out by the sea of silt, rent a plot of land and set up spice sifts and nets that filter spice from the winds coming off the sea.
  • Gladiator sponsors.  Spartacus, anyone?  It might take some extensive coding, but I would love to see players able to invest in a sort of stock market for gladiators: Buy low, contribute money to training and gear, and hope that your gladiator wins enough matches to start returning a lot of money.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 17, 2010, 04:49:24 PM
Chalton leather isn't difficult to get ahold of in Allanak.

The butcher shop sells an infinite amount, in case you hadn't noticed.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 17, 2010, 04:51:57 PM
I don't really like it, honestly. Not unless the price of water drops drastically. Already, a bag of salt is only worth that much after the cost of food and water to go and get it. Not to mention what that would do to the merchant class. (AKA making it completely pointless to play one outside a clan.)

Edit to clarify, before someone harps on this point: Makes it pointless outside a clan with an OFFPEAK merchant unless you magickally line your playtimes up with a PC GMH 'buyer'. Considering how often I see PC agents IG, it makes it pointless for ME. And I love the merchant class. So that would piss me off a bit, yes.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 17, 2010, 11:01:08 PM
I don't really like any of Old Kank's ideas, either.

Too much "special stuff for GMHs" and "extra harshness for everyone else,"  but I'll admit I haven't really considered most of it in depth merely because it sounded incredibly boring, to be honest.

The root cause of the current inflation of the economy can be tracked back to one thing: vNPC sales.  If you got rid of that...oh the heartache!

I guarantee it would immediately set off epic wars, or people would return to the Old Ways...where you crafted your shit in the tavern, lived out of your backpack, and only drank booze in the bar if someone else was buying.

But then again, I think it's a little boring to make people grind for 2-3 weeks just to buy a piece of armor when the average PC only lives what? 3-4 weeks?  I mean, that's 75-80% of the time you spent playing the character just trying to afford a breastplate or something.  Fuckin' lame if you ask me.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 18, 2010, 12:31:37 AM
Chalton leather isn't difficult to get ahold of in Allanak.

The butcher shop sells an infinite amount, in case you hadn't noticed.

I hadn't noticed, actually.  Thank you.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: hyzhenhok on April 18, 2010, 01:11:27 AM
5. Create jobs that have value over time.

I'm not comfortable flying in the face of the game world and allowing anyone to engage in this sort of entrepreneurial economics. The GMH's are rich and have it relatively easy precisely because they've monopolized this sort of thing. A guild_merchant collecting raw materials and making things in private is one thing, but I think we're looking at the game through our modern, real-world glasses if we think these are legitimate solutions that can appear in game. A free market depends on protected private ownership and contract enforcement, which simply doesn't exist in Zalanthas (except at the Sorcerer Kings' and Templars' discretion, or in a few specific cases of necessary convenience like stables and apartments).

This is why fully fledged warehouses don't make much sense either, IMO...

Anyway, I don't think there is a problem at all. Like Synthesis says, most PCs die very quickly. The ones that get rich are the very few lucky ones who manage to take advantage of the system: not a free market system, but one where those who go out and take risks that the powers at be are not interested in can do well for themselves, if they're lucky. That some independents do extremely well, even better than clannies, is irrelevant. Remember that for every wealthy independent PC you see, there are probably 20 others who have died trying to do the same thing, and 2000 vNPCs who have also died trying to do the same.

As to the argument that risk-reward is not at issue here because of risky clan positions...it's not the clan employers' faults that they managed to dupe some poor sap into pledging to loyally do something very dangerous on a regular basis for a mere 300 coins a month, and you can't remember that they also provide a lot of other perks to that employee. Though maybe the coin side could stand to be sweetened.

My suggest: bump higher rank clan employee salaries substantially. 2nd tier employees should be paid much, much substantially more than entry level employees, instead of something paltry like +100 'sid or something. For example, if a hypothetical clan pays their entry level 300 'sid, 2nd rank 400 'sid, 3rd rank 500 'sid, I'd like to see it bumped to 300-600-1000 or something like that. This would be the simplest way to fix what seems to be the general complaint, that independents have easier access to 'sid than some clanned characters, while still matching the game world somewhat (lower ranked clan members are mere tools being exploited by the clan, while higher ranks have proven their value and thus can share in the wealth the employer has access to). It also helps with the OOC concern of there not being enough incentive to join clans, without directly attacking the independent side of things (which most suggestions seem to be doing, for some reason).

Edit: Holy run-on sentences Batman. Oh well, off to bed.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 18, 2010, 02:01:27 AM
Very, very well put, hyzenhok.

In fact, most clans have specific rules forbidding their members from doing the activities that result in so much wealth for independent pcs. Which says in and of itself that it's not a conflict of interest for those doing it. Plus, it's always seemed somewhat ridiculous to me that people who hold so MUCH power within the clan as having access to its bank accounts and bringing new people in weren't payed a substantially larger amount than the lowest ranking members of it in any guaranteed fashion.

I think that motivating more pcs to be part of a clan doesn't have to screw independent pcs over. It's a very good point that so many people die trying to achieve the success that people are so bent over a few people achieving. I mean, you have a risky job that's KNOWN to kill 99 out of 100 of the people who do it....

And people are surprised that it pays well?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 18, 2010, 08:43:41 AM
I think there's a factor missing from the complaints that clanned people don't get enough sids.

I read "they're not allowed to engage in the things that make the sids that Independents do and make."

I don't read "they ARE allowed to engage in these things, IF their character proves himself trustworthy to his clan leader."

Having played in a couple of GMH leadership roles, I can't tell you how many characters have passed through employment, whining about not making sids. And then, when their character dies, I go to empty their lockers and find around 5000 sids worth of stockpiled loot. And then I learn that their apartment was just rented by a friend, who found another 20,000 worth of stockpiled loot in it.

I guess some of these whiners didn't really need a raise in salary. Or that bonus my character didn't think they deserved, because they were too busy mudsexing in their apartment to help saw more wood for my character's project. Or gather their group together to escort me from point A to point B. Or even take a few minutes to check in over the way to let me know they're still alive and in need of their monthly pay (this was before the autopay).

Seeing it from the leadership side of things, I just don't get why anyone would have a complaint about not enough sids in a GMH. If you earn it, you get it. If you don't, you don't, OR have to break the rules. I was renting apartments for employees, giving out sid bonuses, buying equipment for them, giving them fancy food that they didn't have access to, getting them out of jail, convincing "important people" to leave them alone...I worked my ass off for the ones that EARNED that from me.

Everyone else, the pests, or needy, or whiny, or lazy, or had an attitude, were welcome to leave, or die.

When I was an underling in a GMH clan I was given plenty of opportunity to get rich, or rise in the ranks. It was't even that difficult. Just make yourself USEFUL to your boss. It wasn't just me, I saw plenty of PCs get showered with gifts, sids, and perks that the "less deserving" got. If your characters never have those opportunities, then maybe you should try RPing a character who deserves them.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Old Kank on April 18, 2010, 11:52:09 AM
5. Create jobs that have value over time.

I'm not comfortable flying in the face of the game world and allowing anyone to engage in this sort of entrepreneurial economics. The GMH's are rich and have it relatively easy precisely because they've monopolized this sort of thing. A guild_merchant collecting raw materials and making things in private is one thing, but I think we're looking at the game through our modern, real-world glasses if we think these are legitimate solutions that can appear in game. A free market depends on protected private ownership and contract enforcement, which simply doesn't exist in Zalanthas (except at the Sorcerer Kings' and Templars' discretion, or in a few specific cases of necessary convenience like stables and apartments).

I'm not sure I understand your point, hyzenhok.  I fully support strong-arm, GMH monopoly tactics, which is exactly why I proposed removing the GMH pawn shops: they don't make sense.  Were you referring to the 4-5 job ideas I proposed?  If so, all I have to say is that some of them were taken straight out of our history books and aren't tainted by our modern, real-world glasses (though, to be fair, some came out of my head just for regional flavoring).  Two-thousand years ago, most people were either farmers or goat-herders, and the tangible goods they produced were, in a sense, their money.  If your objection is the proposed implementation where players can rent a plot of land, all I can say is that's a limitation of the game.  It's not perfect, but most of the code needed for it already exists and so with a little adaptation it could be implemented well before Arm 2.0 arrives.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 18, 2010, 01:04:02 PM
Was the argument that Clannies don't get enough or was it (as I had thought) That indies make _far_ too much?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 18, 2010, 01:07:45 PM
A little of both.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sephiroto on April 18, 2010, 01:20:53 PM
In regards to the independent wealth/clanned-perk gap, one thing that bothers me is how much GMH employees have to pay for house gear and finery.  Sure they get some discounts, but it still seems like theyr'e still paying too much.  I could be wrong, but when PC merchants of a certain PC clan that I was part of wants me to pay 700-1000+ coins for two pieces of SHARPENED BONE to help me climb rocks, I can't help but laugh.  Seriously, what's so special about sharpened bones?  Were they made out of Adamantium? 

This extends to less-rare items too.  Considering that VNPC and PC hunters are going out and gathering copious amounts of common, raw materials, the crafters are being paid mostly on salary, and that House agents/merchants shouldn't be profiting from internal sales, it seems like it should cost relatively little for a house member who has sworn a LIFE oath to equip themselves with good, dependable equipment.  But instead, I have the overwhelming feeling that they are being taken advantage.  I'm aware that there is a base price in the system and that the Agent/Merchant charges more to 3rd parties to make profit, but more could be done to save clan PC's money on House goods.

Please don't mistake me for saying ALL house products should be acquired cheaply.  But necessities or highly functional, though valuable items should be a bit easier to come by.  Amos should still have to pay out the ass for that special ordered, ornimental silt-horror helmet, a diamond-studded cheese knife, or an intricately decorated Kadian dress.

If we made it cost less for House employees of reasonable status to deck themselves out in good clan gear then they could spend less time and less worry on making those extra coins through illegal/twinkish/dangerous/iffy means.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: HaiWolfe on April 18, 2010, 01:27:44 PM
Two-thousand years ago, most people were either farmers or goat-herders, and the tangible goods they produced were, in a sense, their money.  If your objection is the proposed implementation where players can rent a plot of land, all I can say is that's a limitation of the game.  It's not perfect, but most of the code needed for it already exists and so with a little adaptation it could be implemented well before Arm 2.0 arrives.

What about a sharecropping (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharecropping) system in lieu of renting? In sharecropping, landlords let tenants use their land in exchange for a share of the harvest, generally around 50%. Tenants may or may not have to pay rent, depending on the contract, and could purchase starting seeds, tools, animals, etc. from the landowner (often at inflated prices).

Seems more thematically fitting, reinforcing the notion of commoners as serfs/peons, not entrepreneurs. There would also be the added benefit of a natural cap on the amount of coin entering the IG economy, since a 50% tax on profits on top of overhead would lead to a point of diminishing returns for PC farmers and herders.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on April 18, 2010, 03:36:25 PM
I'd bet if PC templars -really- started cracking down on PC's selling to NPC shops, it would fix a few things.

I've had and seen PCs sell to NPC merchants and to other PCs even, without even having heard of a merchant's token.

Couple that with templars taking a little "tax" from profits....

Just a thought.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sephiroto on April 18, 2010, 04:04:33 PM
Its illegal to sell to NPC merchants without a token?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Xeran Van Houten on April 18, 2010, 04:07:46 PM
Are NPCs and PCs equivolent?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 18, 2010, 04:20:01 PM
In both cities, one person must have a merchant's license/token in every transaction for it to be legal.  Shopkeeper NPCs can all be assumed to have the license/token.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 18, 2010, 04:24:42 PM
In both cities, one person must have a merchant's license/token in every transaction for it to be legal.  Shopkeeper NPCs can all be assumed to have the license/token.

That's kind of what I thought, also. Which is why I always assume that you don't need one to deal with NPCs or GMH players, because theirs are taken care of also.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on April 18, 2010, 04:27:16 PM
In both cities, one person must have a merchant's license/token in every transaction for it to be legal.  Shopkeeper NPCs can all be assumed to have the license/token.

Oh, right.... I forgot only one person needs a token. x-X

I tried.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 18, 2010, 05:03:58 PM
Templars cracking down on PCs selling to shops would be silly, anyway.

It's assumed that, when the shopkeeper buys something, it's something he thinks is worth the money.  So if templars start cracking down on sales to GMH shops, they're also cracking down on profits that are expected by the GMHs.

I suppose you could go that route if you really wanted to, as a PC templar.  I don't think it would be particularly wise, though.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on April 18, 2010, 05:29:10 PM
Templars cracking down on PCs selling to shops would be silly, anyway.

It's assumed that, when the shopkeeper buys something, it's something he thinks is worth the money.  So if templars start cracking down on sales to GMH shops, they're also cracking down on profits that are expected by the GMHs.

I suppose you could go that route if you really wanted to, as a PC templar.  I don't think it would be particularly wise, though.

I meant more cracking down on profits to unaffiliated PCs more than anything.... Doubt a templar would bother GMH merchants much.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: hyzhenhok on April 18, 2010, 05:56:08 PM
5. Create jobs that have value over time.

I'm not comfortable flying in the face of the game world and allowing anyone to engage in this sort of entrepreneurial economics. The GMH's are rich and have it relatively easy precisely because they've monopolized this sort of thing. A guild_merchant collecting raw materials and making things in private is one thing, but I think we're looking at the game through our modern, real-world glasses if we think these are legitimate solutions that can appear in game. A free market depends on protected private ownership and contract enforcement, which simply doesn't exist in Zalanthas (except at the Sorcerer Kings' and Templars' discretion, or in a few specific cases of necessary convenience like stables and apartments).

I'm not sure I understand your point, hyzenhok.  I fully support strong-arm, GMH monopoly tactics, which is exactly why I proposed removing the GMH pawn shops: they don't make sense.  Were you referring to the 4-5 job ideas I proposed?  If so, all I have to say is that some of them were taken straight out of our history books and aren't tainted by our modern, real-world glasses (though, to be fair, some came out of my head just for regional flavoring).  Two-thousand years ago, most people were either farmers or goat-herders, and the tangible goods they produced were, in a sense, their money.  If your objection is the proposed implementation where players can rent a plot of land, all I can say is that's a limitation of the game.  It's not perfect, but most of the code needed for it already exists and so with a little adaptation it could be implemented well before Arm 2.0 arrives.

I was talking about your job ideas.

You're trying to use subsistence level activity for justification for profit-oriented economic activity, while they are completely different animals. 1000 years ago, in actual urban environments more comparable to what we have in Zalanthas, you had guilds monopolizing industries and utterly preventing any sort of independent activity. The GMH's are much, much more powerful than medieval industry guilds. My question would be, why are these opportunities even available to commoners? Wouldn't the GMH's have bought them all up to use them as cash cows? And used their political connections to enable that? (Same argument goes against player-rented warehouses, really).

Quote from: Sinna
Was the argument that Clannies don't get enough or was it (as I had thought) That indies make _far_ too much?

The OP complained generally about some indies being able to make more than clanned roles. The problem I have is that a lot of suggestions are aimed at crippling indie money generation, apparently with the assumption that all indies are swimming in obsidian, and with the blatant purpose of driving them into clans. Having played plenty of indies that have trouble making ends meet (especially early on, or when some disaster or theft costs them a large portion of their wealth), I really can't accept anything that would make it more difficult for independent characters. It's already difficult enough, and it already is set up in a way that meshes coherently with the game world.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 18, 2010, 06:46:28 PM
The OP complained generally about some indies being able to make more than clanned roles. The problem I have is that a lot of suggestions are aimed at crippling indie money generation, apparently with the assumption that all indies are swimming in obsidian, and with the blatant purpose of driving them into clans. Having played plenty of indies that have trouble making ends meet (especially early on, or when some disaster or theft costs them a large portion of their wealth), I really can't accept anything that would make it more difficult for independent characters. It's already difficult enough, and it already is set up in a way that meshes coherently with the game world.

After reading through this thread again, I sort of agree that, aside from a few tweaks, the ability for independent PCs to generate obsidian coins shouldn't be hindered (it really does shaft casual players), though I still think that somehow limiting the amount of coins an independent PC can safely amass is a good idea; it doesn't affect the casual or middle-class independent PCs, but it does lower the frequency of mega-wealthy independent PCs.  That's only one side of the coin, however.

The other side is giving clanned PCs a substantial salary boost.  Like it or not, the in-game economy is inflated, and even cheaply-made goods (armor, blades, and more) rarely come at a price lower than 100-200 coins.  Current clan pay does not reflect this, creating much of the disparity.

My personal take on salaries is that they should be set up something like this (though clans should vary in pay based on in-game wealth):

Entry Level:500
Middle Management:1000
Upper Management:2000

I'm basing these numbers on the following:

The cost of an ale in the Gaj is 18 coins.  Even with a pay of 500 coins every 115 days, an entry level employee would only be able to purchase an ale at the end of a hard day's work for 27 days before going broke.  At "middle management" pay, it's 55 days.  This still seems kind of poor, especially given what independent PCs make, but since PCs typically aren't logged in for every single IC day, this amount is at least workable, perhaps even fair, as clanned PCs don't have to codedly work for their coin (aside from what their superiors demand), and they typically get free food, water, and lodging.

I'd also like to encourage people that play nobility/superiors to consider issuing performance-based pay, to supplement an employee's base salary.  This will achieve two things:



These are net benefits to you, both as an OOC and an IC leader.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 18, 2010, 06:59:55 PM
The OP complained generally about some indies being able to make more than clanned roles. The problem I have is that a lot of suggestions are aimed at crippling indie money generation, apparently with the assumption that all indies are swimming in obsidian, and with the blatant purpose of driving them into clans. Having played plenty of indies that have trouble making ends meet (especially early on, or when some disaster or theft costs them a large portion of their wealth), I really can't accept anything that would make it more difficult for independent characters. It's already difficult enough, and it already is set up in a way that meshes coherently with the game world.

After reading through this thread again, I sort of agree that, aside from a few tweaks, the ability for independent PCs to generate obsidian coins shouldn't be hindered (it really does shaft casual players), though I still think that somehow limiting the amount of coins an independent PC can safely amass is a good idea; it doesn't affect the casual or middle-class independent PCs, but it does lower the frequency of mega-wealthy independent PCs.  That's only one side of the coin, however.

The other side is giving clanned PCs a substantial salary boost.  Like it or not, the in-game economy is inflated, and even cheaply-made goods (armor, blades, and more) rarely come at a price lower than 100-200 coins.  Current clan pay does not reflect this, creating much of the disparity.

My personal take on salaries is that they should be set up something like this (though clans should vary in pay based on in-game wealth):

Entry Level:500
Middle Management:1000
Upper Management:2000

I'm basing these numbers on the following:

The cost of an ale in the Gaj is 18 coins.  Even with a pay of 500 coins every 115 days, an entry level employee would only be able to purchase an ale at the end of a hard day's work for 27 days before going broke.  At "middle management" pay, it's 55 days.  This still seems kind of poor, especially given what independent PCs make, but since PCs typically aren't logged in for every single IC day, this amount is at least workable, perhaps even fair, as clanned PCs don't have to codedly work for their coin (aside from what their superiors demand), and they typically get free food, water, and lodging.

I'd also like to encourage people that play nobility/superiors to consider issuing performance-based pay, to supplement an employee's base salary.  This will achieve two things:

  • Your employees will feel that their efforts are appreciated.  ICly, this means your employees are likely to become more productive.  OOCly, the benefits differ based on who's playing your employees, but it isn't unreasonable to suggest that they'll also feel more involved.

  • Your employees won't need to seek an alternate source of income.  Grebbing and other traditional moneymaking activities are discouraged in most clans, even clans like the T'zai Byn (unless it's part of a contract).  If people are getting what they need from their clan, there's less incentive to look outside of it for income.

These are net benefits to you, both as an OOC and an IC leader.


Very well put. I think the issue is more with clanned pay than independent pay as well. And largely for the sake of playability and the very real IC risk, independent pay should remain what it is. Largely for very real IC circumstances and the way things work with the IC economy, the pricing on ~99% of things is accurate to reflect things as well. I think the simplest, most realistic to IG economy, and most easy to do change would be to increase the clanned pay to the same rough amount as in your suggestion.

Another idea I like is setting clanned pcs up with items for their clan in the manner previously suggested. A pittance.

I was in a clan a while back in which a pc of mine wanted a specific type of armor and the leader set up an rpt to take all the hunters to the place where the animal which resulted in the parts to make it lived and we all went on a huge hunt, followed by pc crafters making the armor from the freshly skinned parts. Not only was it fun and realistic, but it involved more than just one branch, and brought pcs together, leaving them with a fun story to tell and knowing where their armor came from. It was a blast, and I'd love to see this happen more often.

However, I think that in some cases, the suggestion of leaders issuing extra, performance-based pay to underlings could be difficult to do without increasing the pay of those in question. Another thing which I heartily back. I know that the stipend for one particular noble house seems exorbitant, but if you give out smallish bonuses, bribe templars, and use your coin to flaunt and make a show of and bring other pcs into things.... it's very, very easy to spend it all in less than half the time it's supposed to cover.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 18, 2010, 07:10:38 PM
However, I think that in some cases, the suggestion of leaders issuing extra, performance-based pay to underlings could be difficult to do without increasing the pay of those in question. Another thing which I heartily back. I know that the stipend for one particular noble house seems exorbitant, but if you give out smallish bonuses, bribe templars, and use your coin to flaunt and make a show of and bring other pcs into things.... it's very, very easy to spend it all in less than half the time it's supposed to cover.

If that's the case, then it ought to be considered.  If the noble stipend is raised, however, I think the staff should be clear as to where the extra money is supposed to go, so nobles don't go straight to Kadius and spend it on more silk pretties (in my experience as playing a templar/multiple clanned PCs, this is where a large amount of noble stipends tend to go).
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 18, 2010, 07:26:26 PM
  • Your employees will feel that their efforts are appreciated.  ICly, this means your employees are likely to become more productive.  OOCly, the benefits differ based on who's playing your employees, but it isn't unreasonable to suggest that they'll also feel more involved.
  • Your employees won't need to seek an alternate source of income.  Grebbing and other traditional moneymaking activities are discouraged in most clans, even clans like the T'zai Byn (unless it's part of a contract).  If people are getting what they need from their clan, there's less incentive to look outside of it for income.

Untrue. Pay is now automated, for the most part. They're not getting paid because they're appreciated. They're getting paid because the code automatically pays them when they got to an NPC pay-bot and asks for their pay. They can work their ass off, or sit at the tavern and do nothing all day, and get paid the same regardless. This means the employees are likely to become less productive, because there's nothing preventing it and everything to gain by getting paid more than ever to do absolutely nothing.

Employees will seek an alternative source of income anyway. People who go outside the rules when they're getting free food, water, usually stable fees, a place to sleep, storage guarded by NPCs, and training, are people who will go outside the rules no matter how much they're getting paid.

Call me a pessimist, but I've seen characters who are -highly- paid, high-ranking in their clan, who -still- go outside their clan to get more. It's all good if it's for IC reasons, but the fact remains, it happens, and no amount of pay will change that.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 18, 2010, 07:38:02 PM
  • Your employees will feel that their efforts are appreciated.  ICly, this means your employees are likely to become more productive.  OOCly, the benefits differ based on who's playing your employees, but it isn't unreasonable to suggest that they'll also feel more involved.
  • Your employees won't need to seek an alternate source of income.  Grebbing and other traditional moneymaking activities are discouraged in most clans, even clans like the T'zai Byn (unless it's part of a contract).  If people are getting what they need from their clan, there's less incentive to look outside of it for income.

Untrue. Pay is now automated, for the most part. They're not getting paid because they're appreciated. They're getting paid because the code automatically pays them when they got to an NPC pay-bot and asks for their pay. They can work their ass off, or sit at the tavern and do nothing all day, and get paid the same regardless. This means the employees are likely to become less productive, because there's nothing preventing it and everything to gain by getting paid more than ever to do absolutely nothing.

Employees will seek an alternative source of income anyway. People who go outside the rules when they're getting free food, water, usually stable fees, a place to sleep, storage guarded by NPCs, and training, are people who will go outside the rules no matter how much they're getting paid.

Call me a pessimist, but I've seen characters who are -highly- paid, high-ranking in their clan, who -still- go outside their clan to get more. It's all good if it's for IC reasons, but the fact remains, it happens, and no amount of pay will change that.


Obviously, you didn't read my post.  Those two bullet points were addressing the benefits of leader PC-issued, performance-based pay, not increases to automated pay.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 18, 2010, 08:08:48 PM
Ah you mean bonuses. I missed that line, sorry about that!

The problem with raising pay of clanned people, whether automatic or performanced-based, is that it doesn't really matter how much they get paid, as I said in my previous post. Characters whose players choose for them to disregard "loyalty to the house" or "abiding by the rules of the clan" or anything similar, will disregard them. If my character is a scoundrel, and you pay her 3,000 sids per game month, she will -still- sell all her hides to the NPC merchant in town instead of dumping them in the crate in the estate. If you offer her 30 sids per hide, she'll make an effort so you know she was doing -something- to earn her keep, and then she'll tan the hides, and sell them at the NPC shop in town for 50 sids each.

Characters who disregard the rules/policies/guidelines/laws of the clan, will do so, no matter how much they get paid. Most of them aren't even disregarding it for the sids. They're doing it because the nature of clanned life, and the nature of independent life, and the nature of trying to mix the two - freedom with benefits - is just too damned attractive to NOT do, with some characters.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 18, 2010, 08:15:10 PM
I don't see why it's a problem that some clanned characters lie, cheat, and steal to get ahead.  This is Zalanthas, after all.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Rhyden on April 18, 2010, 08:23:38 PM
Big meh on my part. The newb indies hoarding all the sids always meet their end, and their successors tend to claim their huge loot. On the flip side, I find playing a dirt-poor realistic Zalanthan much more enjoyable than the vastly successful wealthy merchant. That being said, clannies could afford to get some increased pay. When prices of items and food goes up, so should salaries.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 18, 2010, 08:31:45 PM
I don't see why it's a problem that some clanned characters lie, cheat, and steal to get ahead.  This is Zalanthas, after all.

I don't see why it's a problem either. I don't think anyone has said it's a problem. No one has said that lying, cheating, or stealing to get ahead, is a problem. See, there's this perceived problem that independents have proportionately too much wealth, too easily, in comparison to their clanned counterparts. Mr. Goulet suggests that to counter this, clanned people get paid more, and then they won't need to go outside their clan for more. My rebuttal, is that paying them more won't prevent them from going outside their clan to get more anyway.

There's nothing wrong with clanned employees lying, cheating, and stealing to get ahead. I just don't think that rewarding characters with bonuses will prevent the lying, cheating, stealing, as Mr. Goulet suggests it will.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Jdr on April 18, 2010, 09:18:07 PM
I say money should go to the top, and trickle down. Both cities have a method similar to that kind of economy (northies and their partisans, Allanak with their emphasis on open corruption), and the higher ranked you are, the more able you are to take in money and hold onto it (less predators higher up the food chain). So with that said, in clans, the money starts at the top and trickles down. And that's how it ideally should be.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 18, 2010, 10:22:02 PM
I say money should go to the top, and trickle down. Both cities have a method similar to that kind of economy (northies and their partisans, Allanak with their emphasis on open corruption), and the higher ranked you are, the more able you are to take in money and hold onto it (less predators higher up the food chain). So with that said, in clans, the money starts at the top and trickles down. And that's how it ideally should be.

My concern is that, outside of the Great Merchant Houses, money really doesn't trickle down.  In most Noble House clans I've participated in, employees are expected to live off of their automatically paid wages, and bonuses are rarely (if ever) paid based on performance.  This amount is insufficient, given the actual price of goods in-game. 

Of course, this is based somewhat on anecdotal evidence, so if someone else can point to a few examples where Noble House employees did well for themselves without making money from grebbing or a side profession and explain how they did it, I'd like to hear about it.

I don't see why it's a problem that some clanned characters lie, cheat, and steal to get ahead.  This is Zalanthas, after all.

I don't see why it's a problem either. I don't think anyone has said it's a problem. No one has said that lying, cheating, or stealing to get ahead, is a problem. See, there's this perceived problem that independents have proportionately too much wealth, too easily, in comparison to their clanned counterparts. Mr. Goulet suggests that to counter this, clanned people get paid more, and then they won't need to go outside their clan for more. My rebuttal, is that paying them more won't prevent them from going outside their clan to get more anyway.

There's nothing wrong with clanned employees lying, cheating, and stealing to get ahead. I just don't think that rewarding characters with bonuses will prevent the lying, cheating, stealing, as Mr. Goulet suggests it will.

I don't think it will necessarily prevent it; shady or dishonest characters will always be shady and dishonest, and will do what they can to profit from a situation.  I'm merely saying that, as it stands now, clanned PCs have little option but to seek profit outside of their employment, if they hope to be able to afford, say, a set of armor, or a mount, or furnishings for an apartment.  This creates a situation where honest clanned PCs have the choice to either bend the rules, suffer without, or hope that their superiors are willing to spread the wealth.

As far as making a case for performance-based bonuses, let's take your prior example into consideration: If your hunter PC were to sell their hides to an NPC merchant rather than forking them over to the House, why would your PC's boss (who is also a PC) pay you a bonus?  Bob the miner, who always brings his obsidian home for the crafters, is far more likely to be selected for a bonus than your PC.  This is what I meant by performance-based bonuses encouraging good behavior.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Rhyden on April 18, 2010, 10:30:55 PM
I say money should go to the top, and trickle down. Both cities have a method similar to that kind of economy (northies and their partisans, Allanak with their emphasis on open corruption), and the higher ranked you are, the more able you are to take in money and hold onto it (less predators higher up the food chain). So with that said, in clans, the money starts at the top and trickles down. And that's how it ideally should be.

I think Templars should be handed out stimulus packages.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 18, 2010, 10:35:09 PM
I think the only GMH I've played in in the last...six years or so was Salarr.

They had two ways of giving performance-based bonuses:

1. Each hunter had a drop-box chest.  Instead of dropping your loot in the crafting hall, you dropped it in your chest.  When the Agent came around, he'd clean your drop-box out, and drop coins in it based on whatever you brought back.  He'd give you more if you brought back the specific things he was looking for...it might be tembo-hide one week, or carru the next.

2. Each crafter had the same sort of drop-box.  Anything you crafted went in the box, and when the Agent sold it, he'd kick back some of the coins to you.

I think that's the sort of system that should be in place for all the GMHs, honestly.  It still leaves pure "aide" and pure "guard" roles out, but those can probably be handled on a performance basis...e.g. pay for information recovered or whatever.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 18, 2010, 10:45:52 PM
I think the only GMH I've played in in the last...six years or so was Salarr.

They had two ways of giving performance-based bonuses:

1. Each hunter had a drop-box chest.  Instead of dropping your loot in the crafting hall, you dropped it in your chest.  When the Agent came around, he'd clean your drop-box out, and drop coins in it based on whatever you brought back.  He'd give you more if you brought back the specific things he was looking for...it might be tembo-hide one week, or carru the next.

2. Each crafter had the same sort of drop-box.  Anything you crafted went in the box, and when the Agent sold it, he'd kick back some of the coins to you.

I think that's the sort of system that should be in place for all the GMHs, honestly.  It still leaves pure "aide" and pure "guard" roles out, but those can probably be handled on a performance basis...e.g. pay for information recovered or whatever.

We may have had past disagreements, but I support this, one hundred percent.  ;)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on April 19, 2010, 03:46:19 AM
You're trying to use subsistence level activity for justification for profit-oriented economic activity, while they are completely different animals. 1000 years ago, in actual urban environments more comparable to what we have in Zalanthas, you had guilds monopolizing industries and utterly preventing any sort of independent activity. The GMH's are much, much more powerful than medieval industry guilds. My question would be, why are these opportunities even available to commoners? Wouldn't the GMH's have bought them all up to use them as cash cows? And used their political connections to enable that? (Same argument goes against player-rented warehouses, really).

Because PCs in the right positions to do so, aren't doing so.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spawnloser on April 19, 2010, 04:28:15 AM
You're trying to use subsistence level activity for justification for profit-oriented economic activity, while they are completely different animals. 1000 years ago, in actual urban environments more comparable to what we have in Zalanthas, you had guilds monopolizing industries and utterly preventing any sort of independent activity. The GMH's are much, much more powerful than medieval industry guilds. My question would be, why are these opportunities even available to commoners? Wouldn't the GMH's have bought them all up to use them as cash cows? And used their political connections to enable that? (Same argument goes against player-rented warehouses, really).
Because PCs in the right positions to do so, aren't doing so.
I can back this up.  I had a merchant guild character that was trying to get into any and every merchant house.  My character was racking up the coins and could afford an apartment in Tuluk, Allanak and Storm.  I still wanted into a GMH... and got shot down.  The GMH Agents and the like don't seem to understand how to maintain a monopoly besides outright murder, which is sad.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Spoon on April 19, 2010, 07:35:43 AM
The thing is, GMHs already pretty much have a virtual monopoly in their specialised area. I'm hoping in arm2 that the power of clans will be less virtual and much more dynamic.

This threads gone on for a good while since I last posted, but my general feeling is that upping GMH salaries would cause more of the same problem. The problem of commoners getting rich isn't too massive anyway, as many people have said they don't make a huge impact on the world with their bank accounts. I think current GMH salaries in my experience are suited to the game world, changing them will not help the fact that some filthy commoners are stinking rich from manual labour.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: jcarter on April 19, 2010, 08:43:50 AM
I can back this up.  I had a merchant guild character that was trying to get into any and every merchant house.  My character was racking up the coins and could afford an apartment in Tuluk, Allanak and Storm.  I still wanted into a GMH... and got shot down.  The GMH Agents and the like don't seem to understand how to maintain a monopoly besides outright murder, which is sad.

How did you threaten their monopoly? Was your character able to work with metal? Did they turn the flecks of spice grebbers find into bricks? Did they dictate fashion trends and guide the world towards it? Your PC was absolutely no threat to the GMHs at all. They all own numerous compounds, have thousands of crafters, and keep a tight grip on their secret recipes. The quality and quantity of what they can make is nearly unmatched, and they have seemingly limitless funds and political ties backing them.

The idea that the merchant guild of the week PC is even going to be seen as a viable threat is ridiculous. The houses are trenched in deep, and no single merchant, or small team of people, so going to be able to knock them down.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 19, 2010, 08:53:18 AM
The only time an independent is a threat to a GMH, is when the independent is a threat to the *individual member* of that GMH. Yes, House Kadius is a BIG DEAL, and your puny rich silk-selling merchant freak is no competition to the House.

However, you are in the way of my character doing business with my character's customers, when you interrupt a deal to tell them that you can sell them a red silk gown for less. The House as a whole might not give a damn. But you're stepping on the toes of the individual House Merchant. That House Merchant can either offer to hire you - or if they don't LIKE your character, or think he's too ambitious and _COULD_ become a threat to the house if he's given access to the secrets, he could kill you.

Maybe no one wanted to hire your character because your character was too cocky to accept starting out as an underling. Or maybe you were RPing someone who didn't like taking instruction. Or maybe House Kadius just really didn't need an armorsmith. Or perhaps you were playing F-Me #977 and Salarr didn't need yet another distraction to prevent their hunters from hunting.

There could be a myriad of reasons why your character didn't get into a GMH. Not valuing their monopoly, I am sure, was not one of them. Obviously, they're still there. And your character is not.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Boggis on April 19, 2010, 12:58:00 PM
I can back this up.  I had a merchant guild character that was trying to get into any and every merchant house.  My character was racking up the coins and could afford an apartment in Tuluk, Allanak and Storm.  I still wanted into a GMH... and got shot down.

Said character must have been horribly repulsive in some way as I have never, ever seen a GMH refuse to hire a merchant. What with the over-dilution of the pbase (in my opinion) across too many areas most clans are dying on their feet for people and will hire people on any sort of pretense.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 19, 2010, 01:44:11 PM
I can back this up.  I had a merchant guild character that was trying to get into any and every merchant house.  My character was racking up the coins and could afford an apartment in Tuluk, Allanak and Storm.  I still wanted into a GMH... and got shot down.

Said character must have been horribly repulsive in some way as I have never, ever seen a GMH refuse to hire a merchant. What with the over-dilution of the pbase (in my opinion) across too many areas most clans are dying on their feet for people and will hire people on any sort of pretense.

Not true. I've had the same happen to me. Three in-game years, and it took the dying request of a fucking NOBLE to get my pc hired.

And it wasn't just 'one' GMH who refused. One laughed at the pc, another tried to hire them as a whore, and a third, due to reasons and circumstances beyond my control thought my pc was trying to kill the person interviewing her (which she wasn't, it was just ridiculously bad luck and timing).
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: X-D on April 19, 2010, 04:42:32 PM
I wish some of you that like playing dirt poor would STOP IT!!!

Start making fat loot dammit. I mean really, I have more newb boots then Synth or Ghost now and with the ones Shal gave me before leaving I don't need to raid for them anymore. Ath even yelled at me for taking up too much space with them and Vanth has set about fixing apartments and containers because of it as well.

So now I need to raid for coin and all you players not ammassing vast amounts of wealth are making that very hard to do!

Point being, people with lots of money really are targets.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 19, 2010, 04:53:29 PM
I wish some of you that like playing dirt poor would STOP IT!!!

Start making fat loot dammit. I mean really, I have more newb boots then Synth or Ghost now and with the ones Shal gave me before leaving I don't need to raid for them anymore. Ath even yelled at me for taking up too much space with them and Vanth has set about fixing apartments and containers because of it as well.

So now I need to raid for coin and all you players not ammassing vast amounts of wealth are making that very hard to do!

Point being, people with lots of money really are targets.

Not if it's all in the bank..  ;D
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: X-D on April 19, 2010, 04:55:26 PM
Buy NICER BOOTS!
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Niamh on April 19, 2010, 05:15:17 PM
I personally like it when leader PCs are being picky about who they hire, rather than hiring every person who comes along.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: jstorrie on April 19, 2010, 05:31:22 PM
Said character must have been horribly repulsive in some way as I have never, ever seen a GMH refuse to hire a merchant.

Smart GMH agents usually try to get their hands on merchants whenever possible; but not all GMH agents are smart. The last time I played one, I flipped the bird to many an applicant for nary a reason. It's fun. Also your clan is cooler if you're harder to get into.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 19, 2010, 05:43:27 PM
I've refused to hire people before while I was in a leadership position. With some would-be hirelings, there were a lot of reasons combined. With others, there might've been just one or two reasons.

Reasons why I didn't hire you (you, meaning, whoever I didn't hire):

1. My character doesn't want or need the competition in her own clan, and having to share a cut of the commission is something she doesn't want to do.
2. I don't play the same time you do, and the timing is just really wrong OOCly.
3. Your character is being portrayed as needy and whiny. I work for needy whiny people. I really don't want to be stuck being the boss of needy whiny peopl in-game, even if you're playing it brilliantly.
4. You aren't merely a new player - that, I can handle. But you are a player who has no understanding of syntax, who hasn't read the docs, and who needs a helper desperately. I am not a helper. I don't mind giving a hand now and then with OOC syntax, but I really don't want to spend a couple of hours every time I log in, having to remind you about talking, and saying, and sitting, and look tables, and enter stables, and hitch mount, and draw and sheath and all those wonderful things that you should be looking up on your own time, or asking a helper to help you with.
5. You are playing delicate-featured, waist-haired, F-me warrior/thug #744. Not interested in that kind of roleplay, not interested in the drama that goes along with my character's entire crew slacking off to stare at your character's tits.
6. My character has heard yours might be a rogue magicker. Not hiring, sorry.
7. My character suspects yours of being a rogue magicker. Not hiring, sorry.
8. You're asking to be a merchant for Kadius, but when I ask what you can do, all you can come up with is "I dunno, I'm  sure I can be of use." Or.."I can make armor." a) - come back next week when you've discovered what you can do for Kadius. b) try Salarr.
9. You're asking to be a merchant for Kadius, and expecting to be allowed to buy and sell from the start, without having to prove yourself first. Not gonna happen.
10. You want to join my house just for the training. Unless I'm the Tor Academy or the Byn, not gonna happen.

I can come up with another 10 but I need to make supper.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 19, 2010, 07:32:08 PM
And the hiring criteria of GMH leader PC's towards would be merchants has what to do with the game's economy again?

Just saying.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 19, 2010, 07:39:09 PM
It has to do with the issue of clanned employees not as much/easy an income as unclanned, and how it's easy or difficult to -be- a clanned employee, and how people are making it rich as unclanned employees, because clan leaders won't hire their merchants, thus encouraging more rich independent merchants who don't join clans.

I think.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 19, 2010, 07:47:56 PM
I believe that typically virtual assets are virtual, and real assests are real and there is almost never any overlap. This is why a noble with no PC hunters or guards will be unable to provide escourt for their PC merchant who wants to go greb in the wilds. Because they can't actually turn one of their vNPC hunters or guards into a real NPC and send it on out with their PC merchant.

So in my opinion, saying that "Well the GMH's don't have to care about one or two rich indie merchants because they are really super even richer virtually" is not really saying a lot at all. As was stated by Lizzie fairly early on: Sure. One rich indie merchant is not going to take down clan Kaidus, but they can pose a large threat, or on the flip side a large boon, to whoever is currently running the PC side of things in clan Kaidus ... because the profits and goods they are amassing are all real, not virtual.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 19, 2010, 09:09:26 PM
I wish we had hard statistics on the economy for a day/week period.  Things like:


Even the last two pieces of data would help considerably.  Without this data, every argument made on this subject is largely anecdotal.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 21, 2010, 08:01:08 AM
I can't help but feel a bit disappointed. From my limited perspective as a player, it seems like the "tweaks" to the economy that were made as a result of this thread amounted to raising the expense of some stuff, while scaling back on the amount of money that could be made selling some other stuff ... ... even though I had thought it was established that doing that only further widened the gap between casual and high play time players' wealth.

I guess we'll all be back here in another month or so, to have the exact same discussion all over again.  :-\
See you guys there.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on April 21, 2010, 11:08:37 AM
I can't help but feel a bit disappointed. From my limited perspective as a player, it seems like the "tweaks" to the economy that were made as a result of this thread amounted to raising the expense of some stuff, while scaling back on the amount of money that could be made selling some other stuff ... ... even though I had thought it was established that doing that only further widened the gap between casual and high play time players' wealth.

I guess we'll all be back here in another month or so, to have the exact same discussion all over again.  :-\
See you guys there.

Um... outside increasing pay for clanned pcs (which, if that was what was wanted, it should have been stated outright), I can't think of too many other ways to change things, I don't understand what you expected? People were claiming that other people had too much money so staff made it harder to get that money, it would seem.

Uh.. maybe you could explain what you were hoping for vs what happened?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 21, 2010, 12:47:46 PM
I can't help but feel a bit disappointed. From my limited perspective as a player, it seems like the "tweaks" to the economy that were made as a result of this thread amounted to raising the expense of some stuff, while scaling back on the amount of money that could be made selling some other stuff ... ... even though I had thought it was established that doing that only further widened the gap between casual and high play time players' wealth.

I guess we'll all be back here in another month or so, to have the exact same discussion all over again.  :-\
See you guys there.

I sorta agree.  I, personally, was really excited about the "no bank" idea.  I think my next app will be for a robin hood type character gunning for syth's character.  =)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 21, 2010, 01:16:53 PM
I can't help but feel a bit disappointed. From my limited perspective as a player, it seems like the "tweaks" to the economy that were made as a result of this thread amounted to raising the expense of some stuff, while scaling back on the amount of money that could be made selling some other stuff ... ... even though I had thought it was established that doing that only further widened the gap between casual and high play time players' wealth.

I guess we'll all be back here in another month or so, to have the exact same discussion all over again.  :-\
See you guys there.

I sorta agree.  I, personally, was really excited about the "no bank" idea.  I think my next app will be for a robin hood type character gunning for syth's character.  =)

How do you know my character isn't a Robin Hood?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 21, 2010, 02:12:07 PM
I can't help but feel a bit disappointed. From my limited perspective as a player, it seems like the "tweaks" to the economy that were made as a result of this thread amounted to raising the expense of some stuff, while scaling back on the amount of money that could be made selling some other stuff ... ... even though I had thought it was established that doing that only further widened the gap between casual and high play time players' wealth.

I guess we'll all be back here in another month or so, to have the exact same discussion all over again.  :-\
See you guys there.

I sorta agree.  I, personally, was really excited about the "no bank" idea.  I think my next app will be for a robin hood type character gunning for syth's character.  =)

How do you know my character isn't a Robin Hood?

'cause mine is!  =)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Agent_137 on April 21, 2010, 05:02:42 PM
musashi,

This fix makes it harder for indies to make a lot of cash off some over valued items.

So it does address the clan vs indie problem which was the OP's original gripe.

The sid gap between those who play a lot and those who don't will always exist. Those who work more make more. Those who are logged in more have more chance to work. it sounds like a problem with unrealistic play, not unrealistic economy. Hell, even if they are playing well and spending extravagantly, as long as their work/spend rate is positive they'll still outdistance someone who rarely plays. So what?

(Well, you could change it if you went with that idea of getting rid of all independently gained wealth and adding a bunch of automated salaried jobs as the only way to make sid. I think that's a little drastic solution to a few guys who play unrealistically. If everyone played realistically then the core imbalance is not even a problem.)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 21, 2010, 05:11:42 PM
This fix makes it harder for indies to make a lot of cash off some over valued items.

I have no idea what the fix was, but it sounds like a good thing.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 21, 2010, 06:05:23 PM
Damn the Imms for making a reasonable, balanced change!  Quite obviously the ideas I favored were better!
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 21, 2010, 07:09:18 PM
I worry that the change is just going to further widen the gap between casual players and players who hit the money grind hard, because that seems to be what similiar changes have always done in the past. Prices go up, sell values go down, so the grinders grind more to make up the difference, and the people who don't grind get stiffed a bit harder.

I was hoping for something to help close that gap, rather than something to further pronounce it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: BlackMagic0 on April 21, 2010, 07:13:33 PM
I worry that the change is just going to further widen the gap between casual players and players who hit the money grind hard, because that seems to be what similiar changes have always done in the past. Prices go up, sell values go down, so the grinders grind more to make up the difference, and the people who don't grind get stiffed a bit harder.

I was hoping for something to help close that gap, rather than something to further pronounce it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on April 21, 2010, 07:20:15 PM
I haven't seen any change that would affect mundane indies.

Magickers can suck it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Delstro on April 21, 2010, 10:41:54 PM
The time played will always impact the amount of wealth a PC can amass. If you honestly want to close this gap, that sounds like  you needing to grief. Ruining the entertainment for the few, mostly younger players is the best way for a MUD to die quickly, IMHO.

If they play more, good for them. You don't get to amass as much money as them? So what? This isn't a game that has a winner based on how much wealth they have. Are you jealous of what the other PC has? If they play more, they are likely to die sooner. Follow them around when you can and make your PC act jealous, and then, when they are at their weakest point, cut their head off.

Can't kill them? Rip their items from them after you poisoned them and they lie helpless.
Can't poison them? Mudsex them, and then do a five finger grab and run game with them.
Can't jack and run? Figure shit out IC and stop trying to cut their legs off OOC.

Besides getting rid of all side jobs and ways to make money as an independent, there is no other way to get rid of this gap than to increase salary positions. Even if you and that other PC has the same job, if they play for 12 hours a day, they can maintain a sidejob and three hookers. Those are the perks of playing more.

Another way is for other houses to give discounts to fellow merchant house members, but you need to pursue this IC.
A templar could fine an unaffiliated commoner every coin they, or their family, has ever had and who will care? Nobody except that PC.
If you work for House Salarr and you have two hundred coins fined from you? Count yourself lucky, if you were unaffiliated, you wouldn't have coin.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Twilight on April 21, 2010, 11:35:31 PM
If you both put in 24 hours in a character, I would suggest you both have roughly the same earning potential.  If they are doing it in 2 days, and you are doing it in 24 days, so what?  You are never going to get, and I would suggest should not aim for, parity based on RL time elapsing, as opposed to parity on the basis of days played on a character.  As it stands, you actually have a couple of advantages in grinding cash with your hours played spread out over a longer RL period.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 22, 2010, 12:14:02 PM
Even less motivation to go out of the city/village and do anything.

Acquisition of wealth can be a powerful motivating factor, leading to the generation of competition, strife and plots. Removing the potential for achieving wealth from the game just makes us all poorer in terms of the RP.

Although I guess you could argue that this has already been done and that the latest changes don't matter much.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Aaron Goulet on April 22, 2010, 12:42:09 PM
For all of these claims that the easy acquisition of wealth creates plots,  I have yet to see much of this in-game.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Salt Merchant on April 22, 2010, 01:03:40 PM
For all of these claims that the easy acquisition of wealth creates plots,  I have yet to see much of this in-game.

That's because large sums of coin are already more or less useless to commoners.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: jstorrie on April 22, 2010, 04:10:01 PM
Not entirely useless, but certainly not the ultimate goal, either.

Survival in Zalanthas generally takes some combination of cunning, (coded) skill, wealth, and popularity. You can make a bajillion coins but it won't make you more cunning or more skillful, and not even necessarily more popular. I find that anyone who really excels in one specific category while being deficient in others tends to get taken out: the cunning are executed for scheming, the popular are targeted by the envious, the skillful bite off more than they can chew, and the wealthy, well, they get their boots looted.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 22, 2010, 04:49:27 PM
I once saved up 10k in coins (quite a feat back then) and had my character purchase a wagon.  That was pretty useful.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Agent_137 on April 22, 2010, 05:56:34 PM
Yea, it's a useful place to camp out in the desert because you wrecked it. (i assume.)
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Sinna on April 22, 2010, 06:46:17 PM
Yea, it's a useful place to camp out in the desert because you wrecked it. (i assume.)

haha!  :)  It's still in use!
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: KankWhisperer on April 22, 2010, 09:28:09 PM
Fix salting.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: BlackMagic0 on April 22, 2010, 09:34:31 PM
Fix salting.

And fix spice sifting.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: KankWhisperer on April 22, 2010, 09:41:28 PM
Fix salting.

And fix spice sifting.

Don't know what the issue is with spice sifting. I never was able to make much coins but can make easily a thousand coins in one ic day grebbing salt. Broke.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: KankWhisperer on April 22, 2010, 10:00:49 PM
moderated post

I really didn't crunch the numbers, but I know what can be done. I didn't even use a full IC day of sunlight. Didn't spam as much as you say. Witnessed by other players.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Lizzie on April 22, 2010, 10:10:30 PM
I think that laying out instructions on the actual process and formulae and gain on foraging and selling salt, or anything else, should probably be cleared by staff before posting. Especially since that formula isn't even accurate.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: musashi on April 23, 2010, 06:57:39 AM
I think that laying out instructions on the actual process and formulae and gain on foraging and selling salt, or anything else, should probably be cleared by staff before posting. Especially since that formula isn't even accurate.

Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Nyr on April 23, 2010, 08:45:06 AM
There has been a bit of a surge recently in the areas of revealing in-character information and information on mechanics in the game.  This is usually done by well-meaning folk with good intentions.  We'd like to remind everyone that in this sort of game environment, it is best for things to be discovered in-character, and for mechanics to be determined in-game. Unfortunately, there is not a clear-cut line for a lot of this.  Please use your best judgment, and if you are in doubt, it may be best to simply not write anything at all.

We will reserve the right to moderate/delete posts or threads that cross the lines on either of these areas (as always).

We also reserve the right to enforce the rules of the GDB by banning an account for x period if it appears this is a consistent problem.  That's not as nice as "we will reserve the right to moderate/delete posts or threads that cross the lines," but repeat offenders take note, please.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: KankWhisperer on April 23, 2010, 08:21:22 PM
I was thinking about this and I think the problem is not enough drains on independents.

As far as I am concerned trying to prevent players from SPENDING their coins is the problem.

Automate apartments further. I'd pretty much be up for there being a few large apartment buildings that
dynamically grow as more and more people want to rent. Everyone has an apartment oh no!? Who cares?
It gives them something to spend their coins on. Maybe the burglars can't carry everything from everyone.

I'd be for more commoners/independents being able to buy whatever they want. There is a possibility for
abuse but that's a risk I am willing to take.

Let them buy a wagon. Let them do whatever with the wagon. But add some parking fees. Every day that
you leave the wagon idling in a wagon yard they add some fee. A drain that requires they DO something.
Don't pay your fees? Wagon is impounded and auctioned. Most likely the wagon is going to be destroyed
or in a hole anyway.

Let people buy slave bodyguards. Abuse abuse abuse. If they try and use them in non shady areas have the
crim code rape them like it does everyone else. A bodyguard is a good idea that someone has money and
should be bribing. Someone has the coins to do this then maybe your filthy grebbing ass should keep your
mouth shut and not piss them off openly. Make some kind of food/water fee for these NPCs.

I think that the "richness" of independents is because you don't really have anything to spend it on. Make
them pay the fees to get what the clanned for free. Some may say they don't have enough time to maintain this.
Then join a GMH. Hire a player to manage your shit while you are "away".  Of course this would require some sort
of automated clan system. Ah well. One can dream.




Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Pale Horse on April 24, 2010, 02:04:28 AM
I was thinking about this and I think the problem is not enough drains on independents.

As far as I am concerned trying to prevent players from SPENDING their coins is the problem.

Automate apartments further. I'd pretty much be up for there being a few large apartment buildings that
dynamically grow as more and more people want to rent. Everyone has an apartment oh no!? Who cares?
It gives them something to spend their coins on. Maybe the burglars can't carry everything from everyone.

I'd be for more commoners/independents being able to buy whatever they want. There is a possibility for
abuse but that's a risk I am willing to take.

Let them buy a wagon. Let them do whatever with the wagon. But add some parking fees. Every day that
you leave the wagon idling in a wagon yard they add some fee. A drain that requires they DO something.
Don't pay your fees? Wagon is impounded and auctioned. Most likely the wagon is going to be destroyed
or in a hole anyway.

Let people buy slave bodyguards. Abuse abuse abuse. If they try and use them in non shady areas have the
crim code rape them like it does everyone else. A bodyguard is a good idea that someone has money and
should be bribing. Someone has the coins to do this then maybe your filthy grebbing ass should keep your
mouth shut and not piss them off openly. Make some kind of food/water fee for these NPCs.

I think that the "richness" of independents is because you don't really have anything to spend it on. Make
them pay the fees to get what the clanned for free. Some may say they don't have enough time to maintain this.
Then join a GMH. Hire a player to manage your shit while you are "away".  Of course this would require some sort
of automated clan system. Ah well. One can dream.

Did I hear someone mention Arm 2.0?
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: janeshephard on May 03, 2010, 02:23:48 PM
For all of these claims that the easy acquisition of wealth creates plots,  I have yet to see much of this in-game.

Because its very difficult. As an indie you work 3x as hard to get any kind of plot going. You'll also have higher turn over rate than any coded clan. You'll never see much of it in game. You'll see some of it, sure, but not much of it.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on May 03, 2010, 02:33:38 PM
For all of these claims that the easy acquisition of wealth creates plots,  I have yet to see much of this in-game.

Not so much plots.... More just sending bounties against other PCs who slight them.

I'm sure I'm not the only person who's seen this happen more than a few times.

Interesting plots do pop up out of 'em every once in a blue moon though.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Synthesis on May 03, 2010, 03:07:04 PM
For all of these claims that the easy acquisition of wealth creates plots,  I have yet to see much of this in-game.

Not so much plots.... More just sending bounties against other PCs who slight them.

I'm sure I'm not the only person who's seen this happen more than a few times.

Interesting plots do pop up out of 'em every once in a blue moon though.

I'm curious as to why "putting a bounty on someone" doesn't qualify as a "plot" in the context of a game which has the tagline "Murder. Corruption.  Betrayal."

Also, those are just the most highly visible plots.  Nobody posts "I just hired the byn to fetch me 3,000 'sid worth of flour so I can bake pastries for the upcoming Fale party" on the IG boards.  If you're looking for something more high-falutin', I'd like to remind you that commoners are commoners and do common commoner things.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Agent_137 on May 03, 2010, 03:32:31 PM
Hm, but 3000* sids on a PK contract doesn't exactly strike me as commoner either. If you have 3000 sid to blow on killing someone who annoys you, then you are not a common commoner.

(unless you've scrimped and saved and stolen and busted butt to save that 3000 for a few RL months to spend it on a contract against your arch enemy Malik who murdered your lover in cold blod. then i'd say, that's cool.)

I always found paying people to make their life miserable a lot more entertaining than simply making them go away.

*just using the number already mentioned as an example. I do not know the going rate for a hit. it probably varies.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Qzzrbl on May 03, 2010, 04:34:33 PM
For all of these claims that the easy acquisition of wealth creates plots,  I have yet to see much of this in-game.

Not so much plots.... More just sending bounties against other PCs who slight them.

I'm sure I'm not the only person who's seen this happen more than a few times.

Interesting plots do pop up out of 'em every once in a blue moon though.

I'm curious as to why "putting a bounty on someone" doesn't qualify as a "plot" in the context of a game which has the tagline "Murder. Corruption.  Betrayal."


I mean, putting bounties on someone for no real good reason.

Like.... "I saw this guy shadowing me, so I'ma put a bounty on his head."

Silly stuff like that.... It happens more often than you'd think. x-X
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Saellyn on January 05, 2002, 01:40:50 PM
Players who are crying about 'sids don't understand how Zalanthan society works, or really how the game works.

Coins, like skills, will only get you so far.  If it's easy for you to make them, guess what:  it's probably easy for everyone else to make them, too.  You might be able to drop a 5k 'sid bribe...but it will only be useful against newbs.  Just like having good combat skills by yourself is generally only useful against newbs.

Coins can't buy you friends who won't sell you out to the next highest bidder.  Coins can only buy you stupid shit from NPCs that make your character -look- like a badass.

The only things that matter, really, in terms of raw power, are relationships with social elements that are supposed to be powerful, according to the documentation.  E.g. templars, nobles, GMHs if you're in the city, or whatever d-elf tribe claims the current zone you're riding through.  There is no amount of coin that will save you if a templar -really- doesn't like you.  There is really no amount of coin that can compensate for favors from nobility, even if the actual noble PC doesn't have two 'sid to rub together.

In other words:  boasting about coins is idle bragging.  Not having them is great:  it gives your character something to strive for.  Instead of bitching about how everyone else has it so easy, GET A PIECE OF THAT PIE IN-CHARACTER.

As everybody knows you can survive without a single coin above your starting coin. You can also die without a single coin above your starting coin.

You can also get eaten by a Gith who then takes all your starting coin and eats it.

You can ALSO give me all your coin. This is the best option.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spacewars on July 22, 2010, 12:15:56 AM
I have played many clanned characters, and they are always broke and can't buy things they need, of course most is provided by the house. but the few characters i've had that stayed unclanned i had way more fun playing it forced me to meet people because its not safe to go outside the the gates and greb stuff, even tho my characters had good coin it was more fulfilling to be able to roleplay an unclanned character that actually makes it in zalanthas but i never stay unclanned forever.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Reiteration on July 22, 2010, 03:29:01 AM
All my characters have always been dirt poor, always.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: RogueGunslinger on July 22, 2010, 04:03:20 AM
All my characters have always been dirt poor, always.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: FantasyWriter on July 22, 2010, 07:24:55 PM
I tried playing a really down-on-his-luck character once... everyone kept giving me stuff :(
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Reiteration on July 22, 2010, 09:55:44 PM
One of my characters even started out broke because he dropped his coins in chargen.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spacewars on July 23, 2010, 12:23:19 AM
coins in the char gen? never heard of such.
always got coins when i went pointed to a place on the map
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Reiteration on July 23, 2010, 12:32:36 AM
coins in the char gen? never heard of such.
always got coins when i went pointed to a place on the map


My mistake, meant the point place.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spacewars on July 23, 2010, 01:44:19 AM
i'm just suprised you had coins in the pointing place
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Reiteration on July 23, 2010, 02:28:27 AM
i'm just suprised you had coins in the pointing place

Check your inventory and equipment when your there, I wonder what happened to the large I left behind... :-\
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on July 23, 2010, 03:01:27 AM
Nothing. When you're there, your str is always too low to lift anything. So it should have stayed until the game rebooted, then disappeared.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Reiteration on July 23, 2010, 05:12:24 AM
Nothing. When you're there, your str is always too low to lift anything. So it should have stayed until the game rebooted, then disappeared.

I bet that filthy tattoo NPC stole them!
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: spacewars on July 23, 2010, 05:44:49 AM
i've checked when i was there before and i thought F*** the staff really screwed me this time and the pointed to where i was going and now i have coin. so staff don't get offended you guys do a great job, i love this game but if you didn't have any coin when you pointed then you did something wrong after you pointed.  I'm just saying
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on July 23, 2010, 06:43:41 AM
I've actually had that happen. Largely because I was dumb enough to put my starting coin in the HoK pants before pointing while waiting for a setup once - needless to say, when it gives you new pants, it still doesn't replace the contents of the pockets of the old ones.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunderboots on July 24, 2010, 10:59:42 AM
I once found someone's dropped pile of starting coins in the point area, I managed to drag it into the game  ;D , gd times...
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunderboots on July 24, 2010, 11:02:56 AM
Nothing. When you're there, your str is always too low to lift anything. So it should have stayed until the game rebooted, then disappeared.

I bet that filthy tattoo NPC stole them!

So sorry if it was me Reiteration  :'( , anyone else would've done the same thing...
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: AmandaGreathouse on July 24, 2010, 11:18:57 AM
Nothing. When you're there, your str is always too low to lift anything. So it should have stayed until the game rebooted, then disappeared.

I bet that filthy tattoo NPC stole them!

So sorry if it was me Reiteration  :'( , anyone else would've done the same thing...

Lol nope. I've seen it like a half a dozen times. Never once picked them up. Seems like that would be cheating to me.
Title: Re: Economy
Post by: Thunderboots on July 24, 2010, 11:53:42 AM
Lol, it was a long time ago, when I was a fair bit younger and didn't play like I do now.