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The problem with DU's economy


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Just a thought:

When you manufacture anything, there is quality control. Some output will fail to meet the specification, therefore they will go to industrial waste. This is the same mechanic found on other MMOs such as the one I described above.

 

I worked in manufacturing before. What they do is set the machine by producing a sample, then checking it's quality, and then resetting the machine, repeating this process a number of times until you have produced the acceptable sample, and now that the machine is set properly, you will mass produce. Over time, the setting of the machine is going to deviate and you will know this by checking the quality of the output by comparing it to the good sample and checking for any defects (every 10 items produced, you check the 10th item for quality. If they are beyond the tolerance, they failed the quality test, and so the machine has to be adjusted again). The point of the process is to be productive, and at the same time, reduce industrial waste (this process is called "six sigma" if I remember?). I know how to operate the machine (and you have to service it as you use it) and I know how to fix the machine when it stopped functioning properly. You do not just start the machine and it will produce everything successfully, that's not how it works in real-life! There will be industrial waste (a lot of it based on real-life reference), and since the game needs a mechanic to reduce the over-production, this is one thing that I propose. Let the machine run and let them produce either of the 2 results through RNG: an output or a defected output. Everytime the machine produce defected output, it is producing nothing and destroying the materials, which is a good mechanics given the unlimited materials and output in this game! 

 

Before you get to 1 Large Atmospheric Engine, you have to go through a lot of industrial waste.

 

In this game, you run the machine and everything it will produce are successful! Have you done this job before? That's not how it works! And believe me when I say there is a lot of industrial waste! There are a lot of stages (this is called a "line assembly") before you get into the final assembly of the product. Some parts are bound to fail and so you must produce a little bit more parts than what you need so you don't end up short of parts throughout these stages (if you ran out of parts, you have to make the parts, and setting the machine takes a lot of time, so it's not productive if you are always gonna ran out of parts). In the end, you have to produce the units required by the order. The machine is not perfect and you are not perfect. When they ship these, the receiving (the buyer) is responsible for checking the quality of the products before accepting them, so ofcourse you will not ship what they are gonna reject as you will just waste money on the shipping cost. So quality is important in production!   

 

I'm giving an idea, but then again, they are not gonna look at this, so why bother?

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On 7/13/2021 at 8:20 AM, Eternal said:

And what are you gonna do with so many constructs and private lands (tiles) that were left behind by people who left this game? They have to be adversely possessed by scavengers and squatters! You cannot leave them the way they are! This is a major problem that is turning off current players and will turn off new players! 

NQ promised us we can leave our mark. We did.

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On 7/17/2021 at 4:25 AM, Eternal said:

Before this year ends, they plan to add the auto-mining, so this means more raw resources (since that is passive) and therefore more products. I was here since the beginning of EA so I'm aware how much over-production this game has. You are correct: it is unlimited that it drove the prices of products down to ridiculous level! People here have continued to dedicate to growing their factory, increasing their yield exponentially, as they continue to buy more and more industrial machines, transfer units, and containers. It's out of control!

 

This is how other MMOs work:

You will farm leathers at low drop-rate and you will craft clean work gloves (5 available upgrades). You will farm 10% and 60% attack scrolls for gloves which rarely drops and you will use them to try to upgrade your gloves. You will use the 10% success +3 attack scrolls first and try to land them on the gloves, and you will destroy many clean gloves in the process due to failure. You will do it again on the successful gloves and try to get +6 attack with 3 available upgrades left, then you will upgrade these gloves with the 60% success +2 attack scrolls which you only need to land 2 successful attempts in a row to end up with a +10 attack work gloves. It's not that easy to produce a +10 attack work gloves, and this is only a training gloves, not an end-game gloves (end-game gloves is the stormcaster gloves or brown work gloves upgraded for more attack). If you can earn 250 million mesos, you will just buy that +10 attack gloves in the free market which you need in order to train and advance your character. What we don't have is the massive production of these gloves as the drop-rates of materials are low and the success-rate of upgrading successfully in a row is low, destroying the item when you fail (and during this time, there is no protection mechanics). Producing upgraded gears is not easy and certain, and with the process, it destroys the materials upon failure (so even if there are a lot of materials supposedly, the game has a mechanic to take them out as the whole point of the game is the gears). 

 

Yeah, we need to slow down the production in this game which is out of control! How we are gonna do that, I don't know, you guys propose. The more they slow this down, the more work you gonna do. Leave this work to the industrial people (the crafters) and let's buy the products from them.

 

I played many MMOs. I'm not a fan of modern MMORPGs because the free market concept is limited. Traditional MMORPGs from the past have good economy and this game failed big in replicating those success. I have my nostalgia, this game do not come close to the economic success of those games that I played in the past.

 

Not all MMOs work like that.  I come from Eve which had a fully functioning player market and production which actually worked for many years before introducing any of the sorts of mechanics you describe above (which do exist now in eve but are a minority thing which sits alongside the markets).

 

OK, I'll propose something.

 

The way to limit production is quite simple (as I have said a few times before) -- just put a limit on how many industry machines a player can have running at once (where a machine in maintain counts as running).  Make it something small like 20 to begin with, trainable to something like 200 if someone invests 3 months of talent training into it.   Also change the talents which currently reduce materials required for production so instead they make production happen faster (because reducing input materials stops more casual players from entering the market as they have to train to 4 before they can make a profit).

Doing that would mean that people could still operate mega-factories, but they would need an actual organisation with lots of people working together, just like you would in the real world to operate a mega factory.  People would also need to decide what they want to buy in and what they want to make in the production chain, which would add value to things like pures, screws and fixings, etc which currently people just make but which collectively cost a fair number of production lines in a factory.

 

Then they can easily balance the game -- assume there are X players, make a basket of the typical expected monthly consumption of things for a player (or several for different player types), work out how many things the economy will make, assume how many players will bother to do industry and to what degree and then set the production times/material requirements accordingly to give entry level opportunities for everyone (perhaps refining right off the automated miners?) and better opportunities for everyone else.  With the right balance things will ebb and flow so some items will be overproduced, resulting in others being underproduced.

 

Finally schematics -- I'd make these optional and make them give a bonus to the production speed of an item (quite a big one).  So everyone can make things, but if you seriously want to make a lot of money you eventually need the schematic to speed your production up.

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On 7/16/2021 at 6:54 PM, Maxim Kammerer said:

 

Energy management is one of the most requested features. Nobody asked for schematics.

 

That's interesting, *why* are people asking for energy management (at the risk of derailing the thread)?  What do people hope it will achieve?  I've spent many years writing software and often users ask for things they shouldn't want because they think it will do something it won't do ...

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Also, who requested energy, dont recall any of the people i know who requested that, they requested larger cores, limetless lua, better flight mechanism, more usefull PvP, translucent and transparent voxels, livstock, personal markets, stopping lag, recurring ore, deletion of schematics, and i can go on but never energy management.

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On 7/15/2021 at 11:28 AM, Zeddrick said:

 

Well, in theory it could, but in practice I think it wouldn't.  I think people would just put up a lot of constructs to get around it.  To actually make it bite you'd have to make it so punishing that anyone who isn't doing the 'go big or go home' thing would end up being able to make hardly anything at all.

That could be countered by energy production consuming ores/fuel and having an increasing base load the bigger you scale your production/energy grid. Then scaling wouldn't lead to ever falling production cost and wouldn't be favourable unless u try to own the whole market segment/destroy all competitors

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19 hours ago, Aaron Cain said:

Also, who requested energy, dont recall any of the people i know who requested that, they requested larger cores, limetless lua, better flight mechanism, more usefull PvP, translucent and transparent voxels, livstock, personal markets, stopping lag, recurring ore, deletion of schematics, and i can go on but never energy management.

As far as I remember it was requested in threads regarding ship building/limiting the engine- and Element-Walls. Also earlier in this thread. Or did you mean historically back in the backer /before Crisis days?

@zeddrick: I think often ppl wanted to limit the possibility to spam elements without restrictions/secondary cost. Why do u think energy wouldn't help?

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4 hours ago, DrDerp said:

That could be countered by energy production consuming ores/fuel and having an increasing base load the bigger you scale your production/energy grid. Then scaling wouldn't lead to ever falling production cost and wouldn't be favourable unless u try to own the whole market segment/destroy all competitors

That's just changing the production cost of an item (the cost of whatever fuel is consumed is just extra input materials).  It won't really fix anything.


If you could find a way to scale up the cost per unit by the number of elements in use it could work.  If people couldn't just make lots of constructs next to each other and split the load that way.

Just limiting production directly seems more sensible to me though.

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4 hours ago, DrDerp said:

As far as I remember it was requested in threads regarding ship building/limiting the engine- and Element-Walls. Also earlier in this thread. Or did you mean historically back in the backer /before Crisis days?

@zeddrick: I think often ppl wanted to limit the possibility to spam elements without restrictions/secondary cost. Why do u think energy wouldn't help?

OK, so that's a completely different problem.  Energy for brake walls, etc then sure (some things might need a rebalance to be useful, XL brakes, wings, etc).  Although I'm a huge fan of brake walls myself but I'd adapt.  But I don't think it would work for industry on static constructs because it would be too easy to overlay a bunch of static cores on top of one another and get around it.

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10 hours ago, Zeddrick said:

That's just changing the production cost of an item (the cost of whatever fuel is consumed is just extra input materials).  It won't really fix anything.


If you could find a way to scale up the cost per unit by the number of elements in use it could work.  If people couldn't just make lots of constructs next to each other and split the load that way.

Just limiting production directly seems more sensible to me though.

That's what I meant with baseload. For example 25 industry units connected to the grid 500 megawatt as baseload plus consumption for running units, 50 then 750 l, 100 2000. That way upscaling endless wouldn't be that lucrativ unless u own the market and can dictate the price. That might leave room for industry outside megacorps/seasoned players

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8 minutes ago, DrDerp said:

That's what I meant with baseload. For example 25 industry units connected to the grid 500 megawatt as baseload plus consumption for running units, 50 then 750 l, 100 2000. That way upscaling endless wouldn't be that lucrativ unless u own the market and can dictate the price. That might leave room for industry outside megacorps/seasoned players

 

Its not that effective in DU, as almost all other quantity limits, because people just use alts.

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23 minutes ago, le_souriceau said:

 

Its not that effective in DU, as almost all other quantity limits, because people just use alts.

Yes I thought of that too. Yet I think that kind of exploit will always be there and i don't know if Alts are that common to break the system. At least in the future or after a possible release ppl have to p2w and support the game if they use multiple accs.

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On 7/16/2021 at 8:26 PM, Aaron Cain said:

DU is crippled and on the verge of death. 

Weird, I have just come back to the game and it seems busier than it has been for a long time. The players I speak to in the community, who are playing the game, seem quite positive about the outlook.  Our org is seeing players come back to the game.  Mainly due to missions and asteroids.  Talking of which, I am not sure we can judge where the eco is until roids and auto miners are in, we will then see a massive shift in ore production, factories will be far easier to run.

 

I am really enjoying the economy at the moment, there are massive opportunities to sell products, even standard T1 stuff, making good quanta trading just on Alioth but also making sales on outer planets. 

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On 7/18/2021 at 4:31 PM, Zeddrick said:

That's interesting, *why* are people asking for energy management (at the risk of derailing the thread)?

 

For different reasons - for example to have "a limit on how many industry machines a player can have running at once" (something you seem to agree with).

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Just now, Maxim Kammerer said:

 

For different reasons - for example to have "a limit on how many industry machines a player can have running at once" (something you seem to agree with).

Energy is the ONE thing that can balance DU, it is vital to complete the game.  Big job to implement it properly though, it ties into everything.

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3 hours ago, DrDerp said:

That's what I meant with baseload. For example 25 industry units connected to the grid 500 megawatt as baseload plus consumption for running units, 50 then 750 l, 100 2000. That way upscaling endless wouldn't be that lucrativ unless u own the market and can dictate the price. That might leave room for industry outside megacorps/seasoned players

But would that unit count be per tile (in which case how do you deal with multiple players on a tile, how do you have cities, etc?) or is it per core (in which case how do you stop someone dumping down 200 cores)?

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3 hours ago, le_souriceau said:

 

Its not that effective in DU, as almost all other quantity limits, because people just use alts.

So I think the easiest way to deal with alts is to accept that people will use alts, but make it so nobody can ever play for free with an alt (i.e. don't put in anything like eve's PLEX).  Anything PLEX like (I think it was going to be called the DAC?) would be, say, a 50% discount on a sub (or whatever the amount) but not a complete free sub.

That way people can still fund their alts with quanta to an extent but if someone wants to make a whole army of alts they have to pay a significant monthly bill.  And if they want to NQ can impose limits on how many alts a player can have and can identify players by their payment method.

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1 hour ago, Zeddrick said:

But would that unit count be per tile (in which case how do you deal with multiple players on a tile, how do you have cities, etc?) or is it per core (in which case how do you stop someone dumping down 200 cores)?

That's a good question. I am not a game designer. so I can just give ideas. Due to complexity and interaction of different mechanics and possible restrictions of the core/engine/db it is hard to say. I would suggest a layered natural limit. So definitely per player. But also  per tile. Also I would favour a soft limit. Not saying 300 per tile, as hard limit, rather you could have 500,  but the energy consumption would make the players consider doing so. So the 200  more would require a lot more power, needing more powerplants. Those factors could interact. So if the tile is crowded it adds to personal inefficiency. Then the player could consider: producing in the center at higher cost or hauling stuff to the shop in the center.  About cities I don't know, that might be organic...hopefully :). So industry on the outskirts trade and exchange and showing off in the center?

 

Also energy management is not the single solution to all issues. I think there should be an increased focus an active gameplay (In all subniches; industry, mining.. )

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Again not coded or per tile dedication . individual power consumption of the elements could help to make cities possible/ influence how they re shaped. E.g. industry machinery consumes a lot so the factor regarding efficiency would matter much more than for a dispenser, programming board or screen with lower consumption.

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