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Goblinworks Blog: Money Changes Everything


Pathfinder Online

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Goblin Squad Member

Ryan Dancey wrote:
Megatroid wrote:


Pathfinder's take on sandbox economics sounds interesting, and very much like Eve, at first glance. Perhaps too much like Eve in the sense of the speed and miraculous availability of information the description implies to me.

Information will propagate instantly, whether it is done in-game or out-of-game. It's trivially easy to ensure that you have up-to-the-second pricing and availability info anywhere that you care about by using alts.

So rather than put players who don't understand that at a disadvantage, we'll just provide those tools to everyone automatically.

RyanD

+1, focus on making a solid good system that works, figure out the in game justification later (message spells, portals, every banker actually having a telepathic bond spell on them, etc...)

Goblin Squad Member

For the first time I read something about PFO that I didn't immediately like.

Paying real money for skills; or as Ryan specified: Skill training. It feels more like 'pay to win' than simply trading bits for coins (like plex).

HOWEVER: If what is being said is simply that you can e.g. choose to pay for 30 days of training time, in order to level up your character in a cheaper way (without any other benefits), rather than subscribing, I am all for that. Then it will still require the same amount of time to advance, and simply provides a tiered way of paying to play the game.

So.. I guess it depends on if I understand what I am reading correctly.

Also with the current options laid out it seems like a monthly subscription is not mandatory to play the game? (I will still subscribe - dont worry ;)).

Goblin Squad Member

Onishi wrote:
+1, focus on making a solid good system that works, figure out the in game justification later (message spells, portals, every banker actually having a telepathic bond spell on them, etc...)

+1. Agreed. And if you can't manage an in game justification, just use "fairness".

I imagine that in practice, even with a lot of visibility, player groups that put more effort into managing resource-crafting-trader chains will have an advantage - but because of the effort, not secret knowledge outside the game.


Frawan wrote:
Paying real money for skills; or as Ryan specified: Skill training.

This is exactly what your subscription will do. Your sub pays for training, not the ability to log in. As they said, you can play for free, but your character won't advance without paying.

If you don't have a sub (ie: you play via MTX, choosing your own sub package essentially), there MUST be a way to train, so there has to be a training package for sale. Otherwise subbing would be the only way anyone would ever be able to train.

Goblin Squad Member

Frawan wrote:

For the first time I read something about PFO that I didn't immediately like.

Paying real money for skills; or as Ryan specified: Skill training. It feels more like 'pay to win' than simply trading bits for coins (like plex).

HOWEVER: If what is being said is simply that you can e.g. choose to pay for 30 days of training time, in order to level up your character in a cheaper way (without any other benefits), rather than subscribing, I am all for that. Then it will still require the same amount of time to advance, and simply provides a tiered way of paying to play the game.

So.. I guess it depends on if I understand what I am reading correctly.

Also with the current options laid out it seems like a monthly subscription is not mandatory to play the game? (I will still subscribe - dont worry ;)).

Your HOWEVER is correct, it is basically paying for a subscription to level up, or you can play for free without leveling, until you buy subscription time for in game money/resources.

In essense it is a good system, for GW's side, it ensures that one way or another, there is a subscription being payed for, for every player that is gaining skills, no matter what skills are capped so someone can't pay 10x more to skill up 10x faster, though they may be wealthier considering people are going to buy their extra training time, but that is intrinsically a problem anyway no matter what (if GW dosn't provide it, the gold farmers will).

Goblin Squad Member

@Frawan. You do raise an interesting question, which I expect will be answered in time: will a zero-skill character (like an alt) be possible or will there be some minimum training time (either subscription or skymetal package)? Would a zero-skill character be able to do anything in the game, even transport or raw labor, or will they need to acquire some minimum skills before they can earn coin in game?

Goblin Squad Member

Urman wrote:
@Frawan. You do raise an interesting question, which I expect will be answered in time: will a zero-skill character (like an alt) be possible or will there be some minimum training time (either subscription or skymetal package)? Would a zero-skill character be able to do anything in the game, even transport or raw labor, or will they need to acquire some minimum skills before they can earn coin in game?

I see no reason why a mule couldn't do basic things like carrying etc... In general pure free accounts are intended to be enough to make the player want more, and I would also imagine they want to have enough tools and trading that a free account could earn the ability to buy training time from paid players (after all the philosophy is, as long as someone pays it is all good, whether 1 person pays for 10 subs and sells 9 of them, or 10 people pay their own way, the net gain for GW is the same).

Goblin Squad Member

Onishi wrote:
Urman wrote:
@Frawan. You do raise an interesting question, which I expect will be answered in time: will a zero-skill character (like an alt) be possible or will there be some minimum training time (either subscription or skymetal package)? Would a zero-skill character be able to do anything in the game, even transport or raw labor, or will they need to acquire some minimum skills before they can earn coin in game?
I see no reason why a mule couldn't do basic things like carrying etc... In general pure free accounts are intended to be enough to make the player want more, and I would also imagine they want to have enough tools and trading that a free account could earn the ability to buy training time from paid players (after all the philosophy is, as long as someone pays it is all good, whether 1 person pays for 10 subs and sells 9 of them, or 10 people pay their own way, the net gain for GW is the same).

The expectation with freemium games is that 10% of the people will spend 90% of the money. I imagine a level-0 character will be able to play for 20-40 hours without running into any big obstacles. The money will be made on the people wanting to buy their own castle.

Goblin Squad Member

I'm really liking the implications of this new blog post. The economic system offers options to everyone. In my case, I had thought to start by purchasing two subscriptions. In an earlier posting Ryan had described to me that a sub would equal one 'fully developable character', meaning the ability to train skills, not the skills themselves. Of course you could split these skills among different characters as you see fit. So I planned to have one adventuring 'main' and one stay-at-home crafter. Now it seems my main could theoretically acquire enough coin to buy training time in game to use for my crafter-so, only one subscription. And tho it would take some time, a free-to-play(er) could make coin and purchase the ability to train up like a person using real-world money. And there's a myriad of combos between subs, MTX, ftp and whatever number of characters you have.

Goblin Squad Member

Ryan, can you clarify something?

Obviously, you're not going to allow a single character to double-up training in Adventuring Skills. However, would you consider letting a single character double-up by training Adventuring Skills at the same time they're training Crafting Skills?

I'm not sure whether y'all are planning on creating synergy between Adventuring and Crafting skills, but if you're not, it seems to me that this would be harmless. It would be beneficial for the (probably small) subset of players who prefer to have a single character who is both their Adventuring main and their Crafting main.

I've always hated it when game mechanics forced me to create an alt to do something.

For the record, I can see many reasons this might not be something you'd want to do, but I figured it was worth mentioning.

Goblin Squad Member

@Nihimon

Good question! But I do see the possibility for your subbed main to earn enough coin to buy training time to level an alt crafter for free.

So either way is good in theory!

Goblin Squad Member

I'll wait for the clarification, but I personally would prefer a continuum from pure adventurer to adventurer-crafter to pure crafter. I'd think allowing double training would undercut those leaning towards crafting.

Overheard in a tavern "I spent the last 10 years working to my fighter capstone." "I spent the last ten years working to my blacksmith capstone." "In the last ten years I capstoned both fighter and smith!"

Goblin Squad Member , Star Voter 2014

What I'm wondering now is whether you'll have to buy training time on the open market, or whether there will be some level of training time that either comes free with a new character or is available from NPC vendors. It's perfectly fine if it's limited (one week when you create a new character, or 5 skills worth, or something), but I really don't think a brand new player should have to figure out where to go to buy their initial amounts of time, or what fair market value for them is.

Ideally, the system would be something like:
1) You visit a skill trainer and pick a skill to begin developing. This could be free, or relatively cheap (at least at first).
2) A countdown timer is set, and when it runs out the skill is trained.
3) For every minute the timer ticks off, you spend a minute of training time. If you run out, the timer stops.

New characters would come with two weeks worth of training time banked. They can't sell it or trade it, but they won't need to purchase it on the open economy until it runs out. This will let them train up some basic skills (and get hooked or not) before they're faced with the decision of "pay up or be useless".

Goblin Squad Member

@Bobson, the most common way to buy Skill Training Time will probably be with a credit card out of game.

Goblin Squad Member

Nihimon wrote:
@Bobson, the most common way to buy Skill Training Time will probably be with a credit card out of game.

No I think I see where bobson is going with this, he's talking about a trial period of a few weeks or possibly a month for a new character to get the feel of the advancement system, before forking over his first payment. Personally I agree with this idea, I believe eve also does a free 2 week trial or so.

Goblin Squad Member

I see. So, your F2P account would come with 2 weeks of skill training time included.

It's not going to matter to me :) But I can see value in that.

Goblin Squad Member

Just playing the devil's advocate here: Depending on how it was done, it might allow armies (ok, platoons) of F2P grunts using throw away trial accounts. It depends on the combat disparity between fresh and mature characters, but we've been told that the disparity would be more about options available. Would 25-50 fresh F2P grunts with 2 weeks training be something to be reckoned with? Might actually be fun to watch, actually.

Goblin Squad Member

Since "Skill Training Time" seems to be a somewhat confusing name, and you're essentially buying a "basic subscription" but not actually subscribing, maybe a different name could be used?

Character Development Time?
Tutelage Time?
Adventurer's Guild Membership? (similar to the Pilot's License from EVE)
Growth Pass?

Silver Crusade Goblin Squad Member

I could see the value of F2P accounts being, well, free. Large conflicts could actually be large: hoards of low level characters could be used, at no cost to players. Sure, a 20th level wizard could dust them off quickly, but then what does one do about that 20th level Paladin who is now next to you? Equally interesting would be if you could tie characters to a "leader", so that you could have a fighter and his dozen mooks charge, where the mooks just target and attack what the fighter targets. Yes, perhaps this system would break down quickly, with hundreds of characters all tied together. But, why not dream?

Goblinworks Executive Founder

Why settle for hordes of untrained masses when a rich individual can turn those characters into trained and loyal soldiers?

I foresee a company of mercenaries who work for STCs, exclusively.

Goblin Squad Member

I've missed being able to interact on the PFO forums.

The more I read about this game the more interested I become. I am glad GoblinWorks is not taking the same path as the dime a dozen themepark games out there.

This game is shaping up to be something vastly different.

I very much support GW forging their own road. It appears to be a path I am willing to follow in order to experience something totally different.

Goblin Squad Member

Alexander_Damocles wrote:
Sure, a 20th level wizard could dust them off quickly...

But it's been indicated that we don't start at level 1 and we don't cap at level 20. It's more like start at 5th or 6th level, and cap at ~10. Speaking about relative power, but not a direct translation from PF.

@Decius; there's an interesting prospect. Players agreeing to use their characters as hirelings for someone who will pay the bill.

Goblin Squad Member

@Urman, that was actually a misunderstanding. Ryan has since cleared it up. It was a misunderstanding by us when Vic said our experience would be like the 6-10 experience on the tabletop. He was really just trying to describe the type of experience we'd have, not the power level.

To the best of my knowledge currently, we'll start very weak at level 0 or 1 (we might get our 1st Merit Badge just for logging in, who knows), and fairly quickly (3 months? 6 months? no one knows) get up to a reasonable power level by the time we're level 10 (10 Merit Badges), at which point we won't be significantly less powerful than another character that has 30 Merit Badges.

Goblin Squad Member

Ok, that clears up the low end worries then.

High end is still lowish power, if a 10 merit badge and 30 merit badge characters have comparable power, but the 30 has more options, right? By lowish I mean - not powerful like a 20th level PF character.

Goblin Squad Member

Nihimon wrote:

@Urman, that was actually a misunderstanding. Ryan has since cleared it up. It was a misunderstanding by us when Vic said our experience would be like the 6-10 experience on the tabletop. He was really just trying to describe the type of experience we'd have, not the power level.

To the best of my knowledge currently, we'll start very weak at level 0 or 1 (we might get our 1st Merit Badge just for logging in, who knows), and fairly quickly (3 months? 6 months? no one knows) get up to a reasonable power level by the time we're level 10 (10 Merit Badges), at which point we won't be significantly less powerful than another character that has 30 Merit Badges.

That clarification was also slightly clarified again later.

Vic Wertz wrote:


The part Ryan originally had in there that I thought was likely to be misunderstood is that he called out power level in Pathfinder Online using a specific Pathfinder RPG equivalent. I don't have access to that draft right now, but the original phrasing was something like "...the kinds of classic adventure content that the tabletop game features at levels 7 through 12."

To be really clear here, I struck that because I didn't want people to use it to draw conclusions such as "all wizards probably can cast fly" or "druids won't be able to summon greater elementals," or other things that are *not* intended by that statement. He was just talking about adventure content and power level in a very generic sense, and that absolutely does not extend to specific mechanics.

What he *is* saying is that if you want to compare Pathfinder Online power levels to the Pathfinder RPG, we're talking about Pathfinder Online being all about mid-level adventuring.

So it actually is overall implying similar levels of power to 7th-12th level, just not wanting people to believe that X spell or ability won't be in or out of the game based on what levels they are obtained in the P&P game.

Goblinworks Executive Founder

Not power level, but themes of adventuring. You won't be collecting (many?) rat tails for bounties, nor will you be battling for control of an elemental plane with an embodiment of manipulation.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Onishi wrote:
Nihimon wrote:

@Urman, that was actually a misunderstanding. Ryan has since cleared it up. It was a misunderstanding by us when Vic said our experience would be like the 6-10 experience on the tabletop. He was really just trying to describe the type of experience we'd have, not the power level.

To the best of my knowledge currently, we'll start very weak at level 0 or 1 (we might get our 1st Merit Badge just for logging in, who knows), and fairly quickly (3 months? 6 months? no one knows) get up to a reasonable power level by the time we're level 10 (10 Merit Badges), at which point we won't be significantly less powerful than another character that has 30 Merit Badges.

That clarification was also slightly clarified again later.

Vic Wertz wrote:


The part Ryan originally had in there that I thought was likely to be misunderstood is that he called out power level in Pathfinder Online using a specific Pathfinder RPG equivalent. I don't have access to that draft right now, but the original phrasing was something like "...the kinds of classic adventure content that the tabletop game features at levels 7 through 12."

To be really clear here, I struck that because I didn't want people to use it to draw conclusions such as "all wizards probably can cast fly" or "druids won't be able to summon greater elementals," or other things that are *not* intended by that statement. He was just talking about adventure content and power level in a very generic sense, and that absolutely does not extend to specific mechanics.

What he *is* saying is that if you want to compare Pathfinder Online power levels to the Pathfinder RPG, we're talking about Pathfinder Online being all about mid-level adventuring.

So it actually is overall implying similar levels of power to 7th-12th level, just not wanting people to believe that X spell or ability won't be in or out of the game based on what levels they are obtained in the P&P game.

I knew people would read too much into things if we used actual numbers... Lemme try it this way.

In the Pathfinder RPG, low-level characters can easily be killed by, say, a pack of rats. At high levels, they can practically lay waste to armies without much sweat. The power level of Pathfinder Online will occupy a relatively narrow band in between those extremes. Heroic, but not superheroes.

Goblinworks Executive Founder

To clarify, do you intend to skip the 'rat killing' phase entirely, such that a starting bur-hobb-halfling can immediately begin trying to pick a troll's pocket?

Goblin Squad Member

It will certainly make the game different, losing the killed-by-rats stage. :)

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

DeciusBrutus wrote:
To clarify, do you intend to skip the 'rat killing' phase entirely, such that a starting bur-hobb-halfling can immediately begin trying to pick a troll's pocket?

I don't honestly know what Ryan has planned for the "learning the game" phase, so I can't say that definitively.

I'm also hesitant to make comparisons regarding specific creatures (such as trolls), because some of that may need to be adjusted in Pathfinder Online. For example, goblins in the RPG (at CR 1/3) are hardly threats to PCs that can take on ogres (CR 3), but I think we may well want to present goblins as more of a challenge in this game. (Then again, maybe only large groups of goblins will be a challenge--I don't really know.)

Goblin Squad Member

Onishi wrote:
So it actually is overall implying similar levels of power to 7th-12th level...

I really don't think they're trying to say that a level 1 is going to be 7/12ths or 1/5th (12 - 7) as powerful as a level 20.

I believe I understand what Vic and Ryan are trying to convey, and it has more to do with power levels in PFO relative to power levels in P&P, rather than relative power levels within PFO.

I don't believe that statement you're reading has anything to say about the power level of a level 1 in PFO relative to the power level of a level 20 in PFO. For that, we only have Vic's statement that a level 10 will not be significantly less powerful than a level 30. There's still a lot of room left to define the relative power levels of a level 1 and a level 10.

My own preference is that the tutorial phase of the game, where new players really wouldn't wander outside the range of the marshals, should end with the character having about level 5. Further, a level 30 should not automatically walk all over a group of 4 level 5s.


I ffound this part particularly interesting:

"We are also in the middle of a blizzard of legal work. Finalizing our middleware deal has been the focus of a lot of effort over the past month or so. The terms have been negotiated and we have a mutual understanding of what everyone wants in the deal—now we just have to get it all memorialized on paper and signed. As soon as that's happened, we'll be able to tell everyone exactly what we've got planned."

Notice the term they used. I bet 5 bucks the middleware they just bought is a license to Blizzard's WoW game engine.


JRR wrote:

Notice the term they used. I bet 5 bucks the middleware they just bought a license to Blizzard's WoW game engine.

I noticed that, actually, and then dismissed it as a coincidence and my imagination. Glad to see I'm not nuts, and other people are thinking that as well...

Goblinworks Executive Founder

Vic Wertz wrote:
DeciusBrutus wrote:
To clarify, do you intend to skip the 'rat killing' phase entirely, such that a starting bur-hobb-halfling can immediately begin trying to pick a troll's pocket?

I don't honestly know what Ryan has planned for the "learning the game" phase, so I can't say that definitively.

I'm also hesitant to make comparisons regarding specific creatures (such as trolls), because some of that may need to be adjusted in Pathfinder Online. For example, goblins in the RPG (at CR 1/3) are hardly threats to PCs that can take on ogres (CR 3), but I think we may well want to present goblins as more of a challenge in this game. (Then again, maybe only large groups of goblins will be a challenge--I don't really know.)

If the 'learning the game' phase is skippable, then my question doesn't include it. If it isn't skippable, then it fully involved in the game.

And orcs were no match for any combatant member of the Fellowship, but they still managed to swarm and kill Boromir. A goblin might be no threat, in which case there should rarely if ever be a goblin.

Goblin Squad Member

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Not using anything from Blizzard. :)

Goblin Squad Member

DeciusBrutus wrote:
And orcs were no match for any combatant member of the Fellowship, but they still managed to swarm and kill Boromir. A goblin might be no threat, in which case there should rarely if ever be a goblin.

Goblins are easily startled but they'll soon be back, and in greater numbers.

Silver Crusade Goblin Squad Member

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Ryan Dancey wrote:
Not using anything from Blizzard. :)

Abadar be praised!


Ryan Dancey wrote:
Not using anything from Blizzard. :)

Vast, vast relief. Good to see that I'm just paranoid after all.


Heh, why torture us with that particular choice of words then? I actually like the WoW game engine. I'm not a graphics whore.
The game itself has gone downhill the last few years, but the engine works.

Goblinworks Executive Founder

Somehow I doubt that Blizzard would license their tech in a lose scenario for them. If PFO is as successful or less than it's projections, the royalties are insignificant next to WoW subs. If PFO gets big enough to make royalties significant, it becomes a competitor with a service agreement.


Quick question here: Why skill training over time instead of through use?

It's a lot more organic and the sense of achievement is much emphasized if your character does things and you see him getting better at doing those things instead of watching a timer run out.

Some may argue that skill training through use allows people to macro or try and exploit the system, but a number of measures can be implemented in order to avoid such acts. First, introduce diminishing returns. Second, make it so that anyone who is AFK can't progress in their skill training. Third, make it so that an interaction between an active player and an AFK player can't generate any skill training. Fourth, make it so that levels determine how much skill can be gained from interacting with something (a level 10 monster will provide more skill training than a lvl 2 monster). Fifth, make it so that a skill is only trained if it is successfully utilized. Meaning, if you fire a spell at a tree, it won't help your skill progress.

There are many other things that one can do to avoid such practices but these were some examples to give a general idea of my argument.

Goblin Squad Member

stealthbr wrote:

Quick question here: Why skill training over time instead of through use?

I recomend reading the blog post about skills (I believe it was your Your Pathfinder Online Character) that goes into detail on all existing systems and why they chose the one they did. IMO overall the reason they chose that one was 2 main benefits.

1. Better for people who want to play together, but not necessarally exclusively together. If a group of friends start at the same time, they don't need to worry about getting ahead or falling behind their friends. In my case I work 9 hours a day, my fiance is a stay at home mom. We enjoy playing games together, but usually we can't play the same game, because if she likes a game, she wants to play it to kill time durring her downtime at home, resulting in her always being significantly past me in every game we play.

2. Controlled timing of advancement, this is the only system which completely eliminates people rapidly blasting to cap in considerably less time then the dev's anticipated, without simultaniously slowing it down so that a casual player will never reach anywhere. It puts advancement speed into a 100% predictable algorythem making developing content significantly easier for the developers, instead of forcing the developers to cater to the 5% that rapidly advance through.

Another point I would make, is often games are broken into 2 sections, Personal advancement and group advancement. Personal advancement is stuff like leveling, gearing up etc... Group advancement is getting smaller in many games, it's things like leveling up a guild (if the game has some sort of guild level/ranking system etc...) building towns etc... PFO is working to a system that focuses far more on intertwining group work, even gearing up from the sounds of it is primarally going to involve crafting, which is going to involve people of different specializations (it involves a crafter to make it, a harvester to get needed materials, and adventurers to protect the harvesters). Now someone could specialize in all 3 roles, but that will take them 3x longer to master. Essentially the developers want more interdependence, everything has an impact on others etc... rather than "go out and kill 500 boars to level up, you are of no use to anyone until you do".

Shadow Lodge

Well, I have to say that I'm a fair bit happier now that the whole money/training thing has been cleared up. One question though - it was mentioned somewhere earlier that you would only be able to train one character at a time, but the most recent blog lists "multiple characters" as a potential account enhancement - does that mean that the simultaneous training will be possible?

As a curiosity rather than a concern, will there be any attempt to manage the costs of individual resources in the game, or will economic manipulation be handled solely by faucets and drains for big-M?

To put it another way, if you notice the price of, say, Mithril is skyrocketing or plummeting, would you nudge the number of resource nodes to affect the Supply side of the supply-demand equation, or will it be all laissez-faire capitalism (except for big-M)?

Thanks (and sorry for what was probably a pretty bad knee-jerk reaction initially!)


I just think the sense of fun, progression, and achievement are completely sucked out from skill training if you have to wait for them to train as opposed to actually making use of them. If I want to become a better swordsman, I grab a sword and go slay some monsters with it, not wait 10 hours while the skill is queued up. Where's the fun in that? Furthermore, it makes dedication an irrelevant quality to have in relationship to skill training. No more setting goals and working towards completing them. Instead, you wait for a timer to expire.

Point #1 I find to be a minor issue considering Goblinworks stated there is a relatively small power gap between veterans and newcomers. Someone who does not play as much as their friends would still be able to play with them simply because they are not that much more powerful based on their skill points alone.

Finally, I think it's a terrible idea for a game to stringently decide at which pace a player progresses. That should be up to the player so that the player can progress at a pace in which he is comfortable with. I had a very hard time enjoying EVE simply because skill training felt too slow. I wanted to learn things at my own pace through my usage of the skills. That way, I would have direct control over how fast my skills progressed. Also, why would you want to control the pace in which a player progresses in a sandbox game, where most of the content is created by the players themselves?

Goblin Squad Member

Kalmyel, I don't think they'll directly intervene to affect the prices of things on the player-market, only the overall amount of currency (M) present in the game. The market does indeed fix itself if it's completely unregulated. It's just a matter of whether or not you come out of the adjustment with any wealth leftover.

Now if players have found a way to dramatically inflate the amount of currency (M) in the game by manipulating NPC's/the market/quests/etc. then I think they would come in and alter the game so that the amount of currency (M) and thereby the economy, is stabilized.

Goblin Squad Member

Kalmyel Stedwethren wrote:
... does that mean that the simultaneous training will be possible?

Definitely.

Goblin Squad Member

Kalmyel Stedwethren wrote:
To put it another way, if you notice the price of, say, Mithril is skyrocketing or plummeting, would you nudge the number of resource nodes to affect the Supply side of the supply-demand equation, or will it be all laissez-faire capitalism (except for big-M)?

I think that a virtual economy means that it's all up to the players.

When the price of mithril skyrockets due to player demand for the stuff, chartered companies will look for new diggings, player bandits will move into areas where mithril is being mined. More powerful groups will certainly consider if it's time to just take over their neighbor's mine.

When demand plummets, settlements will shutter their mithril mines and shift miners to other resources; bandits will drift to the next hot commodity, etc. The powerful group will give that mine back to their neighbor. (Just kidding on the last one.)

Goblin Squad Member

It sounds like their economy-tinkering will just be controlling the Faucets and Drains... that is, how actual coin is entering and leaving. So they wouldn't (and really shouldn't) manipulate prices on this or that good in the player market, but they can and will be tinkering with prices that NPC's charge for services, or prices NPC's pay for goods/vendor trash. They just want to prevent rampant inflation (which most, nay, all theme parks are plagued with) without letting the player economy wither.

Also, another question: When I read about NPC's paying for stuff, an idea popped into my head: I could just be making a dragon's den out of a rat's nest here, but does that mean NPC's will actually buy goods? Like, raw materials? Or even crafted materials? For prices that are actually comparable with player markets, at least stable player markets? Maybe these buy orders change from month to month, or as they are satisfied, meaning player harvesters/crafters could sell different goods at different times to NPC's, not just PC's?

My brother reminded me that this could just mean selling vendor trash to NPC's. Still, it's nice to dream... and maybe Goblinworks got the same idea too. I have no idea.

Goblinworks Executive Founder

Managing the economy means managing the entire economy. M supply, iron supply, building site supply... But if there is no way to create iron from M, then the price of iron on the player market will fall somewhere between the utility value of iron and iron products, and the production cost of iron ore. Yes, I realize that the market price is measured in units (coin) completely inconsistent with the bounds (utility and time). That means, among other things, that the value of coin falls somewhere between what it costs (time) to create, and what you can buy with it (utility). If someone floods the market with iron, driving down the price of iron goods, then coin becomes more valuable relative to iron goods (since you can buy more swords with the same amount of coin).

Goblin Squad Member

@Arbalester - "... payments made by NPCs when they buy things from player characters." makes a strong case that NPC will buy some things from players. We don't know if that's raw materials or valuables. Could also be like a mission.

I hope the NPCs are smart (as in, not a huge source of inflation). They shouldn't buy much that players don't buy, for example. And the NPC towns shouldn't buy much if they aren't selling stuff to players (ie, if they are cash poor).

That said, I'd think that the NPC would be a obvious source for both gear and resources for players, so they should be a good money drain and have some cash on hand. Need food for your settlement, but don't want to farm? Buy it from the NPC town, if they have it available. Of course the price goes up with demand. And you have to transport and guard it.

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