Tarutinkler the Irrelevant wrote:
You don't hurt yourself by gouging, the market will eventually self-regulate, but initially, the first capitalistic opportunists to get their hands on a new item will earn a premium for selling it. The people who gouge benefit. The people who buy overpriced items just because they're new, well, a fool and his money...
Let me rephrase then. Concerning crafting materials, prices on my beta server for crystals went from 1-20gil to 50gil up to 250gil each. With most crafting recipes needing a minimum of 6 crystals it gets quite expensive to begin crafting if you are not farming your own crystals. Along with the actual materials for crafting being raised every few days as well. This alone will raise the price in which crafters sell their completed items. Using the scenario of someone getting a new item and selling it for a premium, it most definitely will hurt them in the long run. Because everyone does the same. Lets say so and so wants to purchase that item. Well they need to make money as well, they'll try to raise their prices to get the money to buy the new item, thus increasing prices again for everyone. And your right. The market will self-regulate, although it will regulate to higher base prices so long as everyone keeps gouging prices. I'm not saying its not going to happen, I'm just saying people don't look at the big picture of the economy. And why should everyone. Its a game. A lot of people don't see it as a growing economy.
People should be trying to get the most they can for their goods, regardless of what any one else is selling for. Whether I am selling my sword for one million gil or one hundred gil shouldn't really change the price of what you're charging for your crystals or bee hive chips or whatever, because you should already be getting as much as the market (and your patience) will bear. Obviously if my sword is a component that you need to make some thing else that's valuable (a plow, maybe), you need to make a judgement about whether it's worth it to buy my sword based on what you can sell your product for, but you still shouldn't blindly be buying up swords at any price and assuming you can re sell the finished product. And no matter how cheap swords become, you should be selling your own good for as much as people are willing to pay.
People should be aware of the economy as a whole because that awareness helps them to make more money and spend less, by making smarter decisions. Asking them to engage in some sort of collective altruism to hold prices at some artificially low (or high) point does not make sense, however, unless you're just hopeful of taking advantage of a bunch of suckers.
P.S.-- All of the silly "SE = RMT" conspiracy theories are just ridiculous. They don't make any sense at all when you look at all the actions that have been taken to curb RMT in the past or all of the negative impact RMT has had that would not exist if they had a friend to simply whistle up some zeroes and ones for them to sell. RMT still exists because there is still a demand for RMT, and to stamp it out completely would require either so much time and money or such draconian game design that it simply isn't worth it. It's the same reason that the US government has never stamped out the drug trade, and never will. MMO companies need to be in the business of stamping out disruptions to the game experience and not trouble themselves overly with the fact that virtual goods are being sold on the side.
Edited, Sep 18th 2010 8:01pm by KarlHungis