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OwenQuillion

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  1. Here are some first-blush reactions to this. I had a fairly modest factory whose output I used to sell Core Units, Warp Drives, AGGs and pulsors, Territory Units, T2 engines and T1 flight elements when the prices were giving me a 30%+ markup over ore sell price at the District markets. If I include my assets, I can probably call myself a billionaire even though said assets have questionable worth in the current economic mess. So this is all coming from someone who wants the market to work, and has some experience in trying to use them. I also just want to say that the promise that the devs are going to keep their thumb heavily on the market despite an admission that they have no idea what they're doing does not fill me with confidence. I have been waiting on this message before making any moves, and hearing that just means I'm going to try and teach myself the aesthetics of shipbuilding or something rather than touch Industry, despite having an alt character dedicated to it. I also hate to repeat rumors, but it's been said there's no economist on the team, and it certainly seems like it. First, and probably most important, is that there are too many markets for too few players. I'm fairly confident in saying this even being totally ignorant of the population, because I'd see NovaQuark bragging about it if we had enough folks to justify 10 District markets, 10 scattered around Alioth, and a further 66 between the other 11 planets. I didn't even count moons because moons are dumb. It's really no surprise that we have isolated player groups, because the game basically shoves you out the door, tells you can produce everything, shows you all this free real estate and tells you to go colonize it. Obviously there's an issue of distance from markets and people claiming all the nearby tiles, but the current situation is basically worse because most of these markets probably have no population whatsoever. If they sucked it up and made the best of setting their home up to Podunk Barren Market 69 by just making items themselves, well now they're screwed! I really wish player markets had been a priority, because then at least we'd have an idea of where population centers were, even though those obviously have their own issues even if they're as difficult to make as, say, warp beacons. Second, the market interface is just bad. The only useful information you can get quickly and easily is the highest and lowest buy and sell orders for a single item system wide. If you want a local price, you have to scroll - possibly through a lot of cruft - and hope you catch it. Sorting by distance is worse than useless, as there appears to be no sort to the prices and you now have to scroll through to find something that's not either ignorantly overpriced or woefully out of date. At a minimum, you should be able to sort by two parameters and see a generalized 'this many players have been to this market in the past week' somewhere. There's a whole lot of other stuff that JC said there would be an API for (which is mysteriously missing from the original post, I notice), but that's mostly for helping the market sellers and I want to keep the scope of this wall of text to why the markets are difficult to use at all. I just want to say I'd be perfectly happy to fly stuff around to different markets if I knew what I was putting there wasn't just going to rot like all the abandoned structures scattered around the game world. This deserves its own line - I've spent, cumulatively, many hours since October 15th searching the twenty ores and a dozen or so items I plan to sell, scrolling down to find the first price with District next to it, and throwing that in a spreadsheet each day. This is probably a form of madness and it's kind of sad that it's the best recourse I have, but at least now I've learned a lot about spreadsheet wizardry. I want to quote this because it's deeply concerning: It's difficult for me at this point, but I am going to trust that NovaQuark has the tools to get these metrics, and just don't want to use the data on the large volumes that myself and many others have put through the District markets because said data doesn't involve schematics and does involve bot orders for honeycomb and such tainting it all. There will never be a stable market price for components unless there is some use for them other than turning them into finished goods (see: some of the suggestions to make repairs to elements require Complex, Functional, or Structural parts). Nevermind the fact that it's just logistically simpler and basically inevitable for me, under the current Talent system, to be able to produce them cheaper than I can find them on the market, why on EARTH would I ever subject myself to the whims of buy and sell order supply? If I'm going to rely on another player for these orders, I will find a wholesaler who agrees to produce what I need, not hope some bozo at a market drops some hydraulics off. I also feel like the first few points I made about being markets easier to use should be Priority Number One. I only currently care about the District markets because they're basically the only one that's remotely legible - I know there is a population looking to buy what I sell, and I've already given you that bit about how painful it is to even just get enough info to slightly undercut other guys vying to sell their products. The only other market I'd be remotely confident selling at is Market 17, which that Jey-numbers fellow from Discord has been propping up. Anything else would be networking or guesswork. Finally, since I've not seen anybody mention this in the zillion discussions I've seen about auto-mining and whatnot: the economy is foundationally based on finding different flavors of rock from different locations. This makes the entire supply chain very one note and monotonous. If you really want to create specialization and have people trading for stuff, try adding inputs that aren't just ore. Auto-mining could return its own unique types of ore or gas or something; there could be products that require the input of grown crops or animals which is more hands-on that automining but still fundamentally time gated. Maybe each planet has its own unique gas type that isn't super valuable, but it makes stuff made using it on that planet cheaper there and you might be able to pack otherwise empty hold space with the gas to sell back on Alioth or wherever. Of course this requires a lot of development time and totally restructuring the recipes and will be its own messy balance, but everything is currently so simple, sterile, unvaried, and often tedious. And my actually final bit in this rambling wish section: WHY does refining ore generate mass? More than half the pures in the game have more mass than their equivalent ore, and almost all of them produce more mass in byproducts than ore mass input. It doesn't even make sense to refine pure locally to save on shipping costs most of the time!
  2. I want to add to the others who have pointed out that Anti-Gravity Generators absolutely need to stay in an 'on' state regardless of player proximity if this is changed. Currently the only way to safely disembark from one is to log in and log out so the ship freezes in place; otherwise, it's basically going to fall to earth behind you. Unless, of course, the design intent is to require infrastructure at both ends of the journey and add even *more* AGG platform towers scattered around the game world.
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