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Interview - Market Wards allow profitsFollow

#52 Dec 07 2010 at 12:12 PM Rating: Good
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I really do like the idea of npcs selling gathered materials/drops and having player buy backs. I don't think finished gear/consumables should be done that way, though - just drops and gathered things. That way when someone npcs their black pepper, it doesn't go into a black hole - leaving cooks with no frigging way of getting it other than paying 3K plus - it goes into a repository.

The fewer items of the sort the npc has - the more it should pay players for the item and the more that item should cost from the npc. That gives players an incentive to put rare items into the system, and as the supply rises the price of that item could fall.

Either that or SE needs to give us significantly more bazaar spots/AH spots because I can tell you as someone leveling cooking I am losing money like crazy when I make any item that is not grilled fish or maple sugar. Making apple pies because I needed to buy several mats from an npc (eggs, cinnamon, natron [I could make natron but try finding effervescent water] etc.) costs between 2-3K per pie. Even though everyone [BUT ME apparently] is drowning in money no one is interested in buying food at all, let alone for 3K for a pie.

The biggest reason for this is most interesting dishes (and post 23 - like everything I can think of making besides sand to level up) require a host of bizaare and rare ingredients which no one bothers to bazaar (or if they do the other cooks got to them first cause I never see them). When you have only 10 slots as if you are going to waste a bazaar spot on black pepper or garlean garlic. Cause unless you are a cook you don't realize that those two items are vital to making like half of the recipes.

Then you wouldn't know what to sell them for. Either of those items would sell to me instantly for 1K-1.5K. But I have never seen either of those things in a bazaar.

Another thing is bait. I would happily pay 200-400 gil each for rat tails, midge baskets or sryphid baskets - but again, they are hard as **** to find.

Edited, Dec 7th 2010 10:13am by Olorinus
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#53 Dec 07 2010 at 1:38 PM Rating: Decent
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I can understand SE's dilemma. You have a seemingly simple idea which will either make or break the economy, and despite what people say, the fact is, the AH as it was implemented in 11 broke the economy. There are obvious factors that went into helping the economic downfall, but for the most part, SE is trying to address that issue.

The retainer system is a good idea in theory. There are two obvious breaking points. 1, all NPC's exist in their own areas, requiring a significant amount of time to travel between areas to locate a specific item; 2, The sheer number of people in the game, when compiled against the number of NPCs, and the number of items they can contain (and now the number of wards that they may exist on) now add a level of complexity to the equation that is a logarithmic scale to infinity of you ever finding a single specific item based on it's rarity. A highly rare drop from a level 50+ mob right now, is technically impossible to find if you are looking for it, if a person even has it, and it is posted on their retainer.

The positives however, are also significant. In a true open economy (which a retainer system is), there is a profitability based on obscurity, and the lack of patience of the buyer. People will pay more for finding an item quickly, as opposed to paying less for searching longer.

This obviously creates a problem for SE. Incorporating a search feature will break the benefits before fixing the flaws. A search feature would have to be able to identify what you are looking for, and would have to allow for price variations without you being able to pick and choose who to buy from for less. And while as a buyer, you would not want this, a seller does. It is in the best interests of the economy to force buyers to find a deal, rather than hand the deal to them on a silver platter.

Ideally, as many people pointed out, the best option SE could do, would be to allow a request purchase feature that included items people didn't own. And a searchable repair feature (and a feature to allow people to state that they were available for repair).

If you could request to buy an item at a specific price, that would help stabilize the economy, while still keeping products moving. It would be more functional than a search feature (and could be better complimented by a search feature), in that sellers would look for buyers, rather than buyers looking for sellers. The price would then be set by how much a buyer is willing to pay.
#54 Dec 07 2010 at 3:11 PM Rating: Default
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rfolkker wrote:

The retainer system is a good idea in theory. There are two obvious breaking points. 1, all NPC's exist in their own areas, requiring a significant amount of time to travel between areas to locate a specific item; 2, The sheer number of people in the game, when compiled against the number of NPCs, and the number of items they can contain (and now the number of wards that they may exist on) now add a level of complexity to the equation that is a logarithmic scale to infinity of you ever finding a single specific item based on it's rarity. A highly rare drop from a level 50+ mob right now, is technically impossible to find if you are looking for it, if a person even has it, and it is posted on their retainer.

The positives however, are also significant. In a true open economy (which a retainer system is), there is a profitability based on obscurity, and the lack of patience of the buyer. People will pay more for finding an item quickly, as opposed to paying less for searching longer.


This ^^ is why I like the current system. What fun is it if I can instantly find 30 of the items I am looking for, and they are all the same price? I like being able to find good deals, to sell at decent prices, and if necessary search for the best bargain. The only problem is searching can sometimes be fruitless if the item is not even being sold.

rfolkker wrote:
Ideally, as many people pointed out, the best option SE could do, would be to allow a request purchase feature that included items people didn't own. And a searchable repair feature (and a feature to allow people to state that they were available for repair).

If you could request to buy an item at a specific price, that would help stabilize the economy, while still keeping products moving. It would be more functional than a search feature (and could be better complimented by a search feature), in that sellers would look for buyers, rather than buyers looking for sellers. The price would then be set by how much a buyer is willing to pay.


I'm not sure how well the buy request would work. It seems faster to just shout in town for a crafter to make something you wish to buy, and haggle over the price. Crafters don't often carry around items you'd want to buy, I think. And crafters aren't looking to sell goods when they are shopping. I sell weaver goods, and am always in the clothier ward, but I almost never check retainers in that ward. I suppose I might if they had a "I'm buying" indicator up, though.

On the search front, I'd really just be happy if I could find out if an item was up for sale or not. Suppose I can search for an item, but only in the appropriate ward, and it would point me in the direction of the retainer selling that item (without telling me the price). Maybe it wouldn't even point to the specific retainer, but to an area which I would have to check retainers in.

If I didn't like the price I found, I could search again, and it would point me to another retainer (area). This encourages people to put retainers in the right wards since you can only search the appropriate wards, and since having tons of retainers together would make it hard to locate the retainer with the item. It also mostly holds the positive traits you described above.
#55 Dec 07 2010 at 4:15 PM Rating: Decent
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rfolkker wrote:
the AH as it was implemented in 11 broke the economy.


It's as same as saying that a thermometer caused fever and a pregnancy test knocked one up. An AH can only show problems with the economy but it cannot cause them. FF XI went through several periods of deflation and several periods of inflation caused by various reasons. If AH had caused any of those then it would have been constantly inflating or deflating because the AH itself has not changed and if it had any effect it would be the same effect all the time.
#56 Dec 07 2010 at 6:32 PM Rating: Excellent
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In response to ^,

The FFXI AH may not have been the direct cause, but it's implementation was a factor. Say Bob and Pete are selling items. Pete is selling his Item X for 15000 gil, and Bob is selling his Item X for 11,000 gil to undercut and get fast sales. Joe finds Bob's price of 11,000 gil and buys, other people try the 11000 gil price and get it until the item history is filled with 11,000 as the price and Joe's items are sold out. So when the next person tries to buy an Item X and tries 11,000 gil, they don't get it. They may try 11500 or 12000, but they probably wouldn't go up to 15,000 because they may not know that was the original price before Bob decided to price cut.

If the AH does not have a price history and shows you what the buyer is ASKING for rather than "GUESS THE PRICE, LOL!" and showing you a price history, there is less chance of the above happening. You see the sellers' asking prices and take the one you like or leave it and get the item yourself.

TBH, I would like to see the market ward system go bye-bye and SE implement player housing with the option to set your retainer up in your house to sell items like in EQ2. You could decorate your house and have a special little corner set up for your retainer to buy/sell. Perhaps you could add in special "display cases" or "storage chests" that would add slots and/or pages to your retainer's bazaar listings. You could buy the item directly from the NPC in charge of the searching for 10-15% of the item's price as a fee, or you could run to the player's house and buy it directly.
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#57 Dec 07 2010 at 8:11 PM Rating: Decent
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shinichoco wrote:
In response to ^,

The FFXI AH may not have been the direct cause, but it's implementation was a factor. Say Bob and Pete are selling items. Pete is selling his Item X for 15000 gil, and Bob is selling his Item X for 11,000 gil to undercut and get fast sales. Joe finds Bob's price of 11,000 gil and buys, other people try the 11000 gil price and get it until the item history is filled with 11,000 as the price and Joe's items are sold out. So when the next person tries to buy an Item X and tries 11,000 gil, they don't get it. They may try 11500 or 12000, but they probably wouldn't go up to 15,000 because they may not know that was the original price before Bob decided to price cut.

Or they might go to 15000 because if people bought it for 15000 before there is no reason for them to stop buying unless the value, supply and/or demand have changed. You should go through old posts on FF XI forums and see people "proving" just as well that inflation was caused by the AH implementation (i.e. people raise prices and old low price gets pushed out of history and nobody is selling low any more). The history has very little to do with this and is only for convenience (so you could figure the range of bids faster). It would work just as well without history.

Quote:

If the AH does not have a price history and shows you what the buyer is ASKING for rather than "GUESS THE PRICE, LOL!" and showing you a price history, there is less chance of the above happening. You see the sellers' asking prices and take the one you like or leave it and get the item yourself.

And it would not be an AH at all. The A in AH stands for "auction". But, sure, a centralized market with searchable items could work, just not as effectively as an AH.

#58 Dec 07 2010 at 8:17 PM Rating: Excellent
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I honestly think a combination of FFXI's system (with a price history) and the WoW-style system (where you can search by item name/type/level and you can see all of the goods for sale and pick which one YOU want to buy) would work well.

I mean, the biggest drawback of FFXI's system was that it kinda encouraged undercutting to sell faster since you didn't know what the item was selling FOR, only how many were on sale, and bidders would try to guess low.

The problem with the current market ward system, is that the INTENDED PURPOSE of it (Sellers will make more money when the buyers don't know what else is out there) is the polar opposite of a caveat emptor marketplace. The system is intentionally set up to keep buyers in the dark about the competition. I don't particularly care for a system that is intentionally designed to make being a smart buyer as difficult as possible.

Now for the record, no matter what they do, I still believe that the three cities should have separate auction houses/market wards. They should not be combined. I see absolutely nothing wrong with sellers who want to try to make better profits by buying materials in one city and selling goods in another. However, I see a huge problem with a system that makes it as difficult as possible for the BUYER to know they're getting an item at a good value, and more importantly, it makes it easier to sell goods. If I only have 10 slots to sell things in, I'd like to know what else is out there and for how much. If I see that there are 60 bronze swords for sale and 10 iron shields and no steel helmets, my best money as a blacksmith would be to churn out steel helmets. If I have a ton of iron ore, zinc ore, copper ore, and silver ore from mining, it would be nice to know how much they're each worth and how many to sell to know how much money that I, as a seller, should price my wares at, and what wares are most likely to sell.

A system that allows sellers AND buyers to make smart sales decisions based on information available to them is a good one. A system that forces sellers and buyers to play "The Price is Right" every time they want to buy or sell something is just annoying.
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#59 Dec 07 2010 at 9:03 PM Rating: Default
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Why can it not be a true auction? Highest bid wins. Hold each auction open for say a certain amount of time set by the seller. If you want a quick sale set it for an hour. If you are selling a one one a kind Sword of the Armageddon you can set it for a day. You can put a reserve on rare items only and common items have a reserve for what an NPC buys them for. Call it Ebay XIV.
#60 Dec 07 2010 at 10:15 PM Rating: Excellent
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cowboyrwn wrote:
Why can it not be a true auction? Highest bid wins. Hold each auction open for say a certain amount of time set by the seller. If you want a quick sale set it for an hour. If you are selling a one one a kind Sword of the Armageddon you can set it for a day. You can put a reserve on rare items only and common items have a reserve for what an NPC buys them for. Call it Ebay XIV.


this doesn't work too well as people want to have the items they are buying now, and not have to worry about camping an AH for X hours hoping to get something.
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#61 Dec 08 2010 at 10:21 AM Rating: Decent
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The funniest part about all this discussion, deliberation and theorizing is that not a SINGLE one of us can find what we're looking for in the market wards.
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#62 Dec 08 2010 at 12:18 PM Rating: Good
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I find what I am looking for in the market ward... Gil on my retainer... Ok, I get more gil from Leves, but, every little piece helps:).
#63 Dec 08 2010 at 12:23 PM Rating: Decent
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exactly what i tried explaining to the wow kids all along. Play EQ1 and you will understand why an AH is a BAD thing. Worry less about being OMG IM SO HARDCORE AT not HAVING A REAL LIFE BUT I GOT 50 OMG!!!11 and more about immersing yourself in a dynamic world/experience and you might have quite a bit more fun too!
#64 Dec 08 2010 at 12:23 PM Rating: Decent
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and before you say it, im 50 and have been since before the patch.
#65 Dec 08 2010 at 12:32 PM Rating: Good
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Spending half an hour to an hour sifting through retainers named Slutcat and Crystalsandswords and then coming out empty handed is not immersive.
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