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Enquillion's Economy Concept

 
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Enquillion
Posts until end: 700


Joined: 01 Dec 2004
Posts: 326
Location: First lowbie dungeon

PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 4:47 am    Post subject: Enquillion's Economy Concept Reply with quote

Before we go, here are some big words that may require definition.

Inflation: Money losing value.
Deflation: Money gaining value.

*** Starting with an analysis of economy in the MMORPG's I've played (WiA and WoW). ***

Your share of the loot is 11 Copper.

You grind monsters, they drop money, you gain it. You buy new gear, crafting ingredients and whatnot. You keep doing this for a good while, probably throughout the entire game. Money is always a necessity to have.

When you loot money from monsters, or gain it by selling loot, money is created. It's not taken from anywhere, even in Morrowind (not a MMO, but still) where merchants only have so much money to buy with, they still replenish this amount over a night.

When you pay a gryphon master (WoW), feed your horse (WiA) or buy stuff from merchants, money is destroyed. It doesn't go anywhere but out of your pocket.

When you trade with other players, money is neither created nor destroyed, it's merely exchanged.

So what's the problem? Inflation is the problem. This system creates inflation, because there is more money created than there is money destroyed.

The more money that is available to the buyers, the more the sellers can ask for their wares. However, the newbies will still be gaining the same amounts from their kills, gaining as much money as the highbies gained in their lowbie days, but this money isn't worth as much anymore. It's not that noticeable until they try to buy a really good item off another player; the price will have escalated by incredible amounts from its original value.

It is sometimes remedied by the items being avaiable to many highbies and as such, monopoly is hard to establish and they have to compete with each other to get their wares sold. Frankly, it's not a good enough solution and it just leaves other highbies with huge piles of gold, as they, too, have to pay less.

*** End Analysis. Begin Suggestion. ***


I see two solutions. The first one would be to give merchants a finite amount of money, so that they will try to make a profit instead of going bancrupt buying 15 iron shortswords. I don't like this one (well I do but I can't make it work), but if anyone is willing to make an attempt at introducing a good system, feel free to.

My solution would be to not have the monster money drops as an absolute variable. For example, say that your average zombie drops 10 copper coins and has a 25% of dropping a club that sells for an additional 5 copper coins. With this money, they can buy themselves a kitchen knife, worth 15 copper coins. These are the original, default values.

However, after one year of the game's release, the marked is suffering from severe inflation and these drops just won't cut it to make a living as a lowbie. This is the beautiful part.

Instead of having an absolute merchant value of items and absolute drop amounts, make them relative. Relative to what, you ask. Relative to the total amount of money on the market.

Naturally, if the average player has 1 gold and 10 silver, 10 copper is worth quite much compared to if the average player has 150 gold. What I'm saying is:

- Divide the total amount of money on all characters with the number of characters.
- Increase all money drops and the merchant value of all items by a fraction of this (all money that is created).
- Increase the cost of merchant items/services by a fraction of this (all money that is destroyed).

All increases and decreases should be using %'s.

This would be updated daily or so. For example, at the beginning of day x, there are 100 characters on the server with a total fortune of 1 gold, 100 silver, or 10,000 copper. At the end of day x, there are still 100 characters on the server, but the total fortune is now 2 gold (or 200 silver or 20,000 copper).

With twice as much money on the market, the zombies now drop twice as much (20 copper), clubs now sell for twice as much (10 copper), and the kitchen knife costs twice as much (30 copper).

Before you start worrying that zombies one day will be dropping 15 gold, 33 silver and 89 copper coins, let me add something: Once it gets "out of hand", the numbers simply get too big, just divide all money created and money destroyed by 10, as well as every player's money pile.

So at the time zombies start dropping 1 silver, divide everything by 10 and we're back at the initial stage. Of course these are a bit hefty changes and it won't necessarily look like that, it should be less "stormy".

To help balance it out though, the increase in money destroyed could be higher for highbies, and lower for lowbies, else the relative values would be pretty much the same.

All in all, this would not significantly harm the highbies' ability to grind money, but it would more easily get the lowbies "in tune" with the market. If I got it all right. Relativity is teh suk.

Stant?
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Stant
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Joined: 02 Dec 2004
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 5:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmm... Money fluctuation like that could be confusing as hell... One day you're nearly at 3 silver to buy that iron sword. The next day, you discover you now need 4 silver... the next day you need 5.5 silver... You're thinking you're never going to get there. All of a sudden the fourth day, you look at the shop, it's 80 copper coins, and your inventory is at 55 copper... You still need relatively the same as you needed before, but there's going to be a shit load of complaints about money 'disappearing'. I personally would rather PK a newbie and take their copper, then to sit there and explain tough economic concepts to an 8 year old.

I think opening up houses and guildhalls and town buildings that players can own that require steep upkeep costs would be more then enough to remove money from the game at the highbie level. Each race is going to use their own money. If service fees were charged for exchanged money, that removes more of it. If like in akarra you lost money on your death great. If unlike akarra, there was no drop pile to pick you money back up, that would be good too... There are several ways to make money disappear. Your concept is a good one and I can easily play and get behind it, but it requires lots of explination and let's face it... Stupid people will never get it and will always complain... I really don't have the patience to deal with that.
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Manifold
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Joined: 01 Dec 2004
Posts: 457
Location: Treading my dreams, UK

PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 6:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I remember suggesting a possible Stock Market a while back in response to Kalorians hint on player run markets.

There could be boundaries, as long as the system stays in place, I suppose that the % increase/decrease of money dropped should never increase or decrease too much.

The 'engine' which drives this system could introduce random crashes and inflations. This would really interrupt those highbies who get bored with grinding and grinding.
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Kalorian
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Joined: 01 Dec 2004
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Location: Uiejonbou, South Korea

PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 6:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Enquillion - good post. This has been something I have honestly been trying to figure myself out for a bit now. Trying to find a perfect system is simply impossible but the trick is to make it seem and appear perfect. thewreck wants higher money value such as gold to be worth something. There are a lot of things that have been discussed which got original approval by thewreck and Kinten but faded away after a months time. No I can't go into details about it but consider that there are 4 races with 4 seperate and different cultures.. think the same in our world we live in today. Thats all I will say which probably gives you enough to discuss anyways since I am excellent at leaking info Razz

Enquillion what I want to accomplish is keeping the global money the same. As in amount

After 4 months in game if there is 40,000 copper coins I want there to be 45,000 copper coins a year into the game.

Why is this important and how can it be accomplished or can it? I think keeping the amount of money in game down to a certain point is the key to controling a piece of the economy that most MMOG's just release.

- Players Spending Money and Money Being consumed.

Several ways to do this

- World of Warcraft form of Enchanting but on an NPC base. Enchantments would take value and durability from the item.. and slowly run out with time. After so many enchantments that item is used up and practically no better than a fish hook for a weapon.

---- This causes the player to buy new equipment which forces the player to spend more money

- Ability to have players run businesses/own land
- Faction dues based on rank. The higher you rank in your faction the more the faction expects you to support it.
- certain items that are rare and only found on certain vendors that perhaps wander (taken from another idea a while back) and these items being one time use. Perhaps such things as runes that warp you to places that can not be reached by foot.

Ways to take money out of the players hands and destroy it at an equal rate is what will help keep inflation down.

These are just some preliminary scattered thoughts as I am busy working to try and meet a deadline >.<
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Chybi
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 7:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe a system where money can reach a cap. If you have 100 players, and the set money cap is 10gold, once 100gold is divided among the population of players, money stopped being created until a certain %(25 for example) of that money has been destroyed. Of course you would end up with some people hogging money, and saving it for times where money stops being destroyed.

Maybe have a system where money is not destroyed and not created. NPC's keep the money you give them when buying stuff, the less money they have, the lower they try buying stuff from you for. In this example, I think it would be better if monsters didn't drop money and only items. Everything you need you would have to get from players/NPCs, so money is not simply destroyed. NPC's have vaults/chests that you could try to steal. In this example, the world has a set money limit when the world is created and that limit could be increased at one point by simply increasing the money certain NPC's have on them at one point. Example, there is a total of 200 gold in the world, that money is too little for the number of players, so all NPCs (say 50 of them) all get an extra 2 gold each, bringing the total money to 300gold.

ANyways these are my ideas don't know how good you guys will find them.
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