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Inflation in UO: Keeping up with the Joneses?

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Landicine, Aug 11, 2008.

  1. Landicine

    Landicine Seasoned Veteran
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    A lot of threads about gold sinks and wealth and item costs and such got me thinking about inflation in UO. When I started playing, 10k gold was a lot. I killed to save 100k for a tower deed, only to have the price jump to 400k or so right when I was about to buy. Now, I have millions, and others have hundreds of millions or more. The average PvP weapon costs a few million, and the better ones go for a lot lot more.

    Inflation has a few causes that have been discussed (gold farming, scripting, lack of gold sinks), but I don't want to discuss that. I'm pretty comfortable in game. I have most of the items I want, and the few I don't are something to actually hunt for. I have enough money to waste it on crazy ideas or crafting fiascos. However, I still feel the call to "keep up with the Joneses:" to have enough gold to be considered middle class, to have good enough gear to be considered mediocre, etc.

    So the question is, to "keep up with the Joneses," how much gold should someone be making in game each day? 100k? 500k? 1 million? More?
     
  2. Harb

    Harb Guest

    There have been pleas for changing our gold standard to a different currency since the birth of Trammel, which for many years seemed a potential inflation solution but not so much an absolute requirement. I fear we've transitioned beyond the "good idea" stage on this one, not due to appropriate conduct (let's face it, you can make a million killing earthies in a day, albeit a long boring day). Troubles aren't restricted to what you can "earn," they extend to the amount of in-game gold that wasn't earned (dupes, cheats, etc).

    I do believe gold must go away, and replaced with a new currency. Acquiring a new currency must be weighed against time/ effort/ level of play/ risk, you may get a shilling from a mongbat, 5 from an earthie, and 50 from a Yamadon, just as an off the cuff example (the "return" system must be closely studied prior to application). A mechanism to expend current gold must be enacted prior to any change, and offerings can not be dumbed down. Once enacted, other potential pitfalls are requiring group play to achieve greater return with the new currency, or ramping up return in Fel.

    No change will hold or have long term meaning if duping is not halted in the absolute. All items must be "tagged" out of view by date/ creating account/ unique creation ID and not observable within the client. Code must immediately detect duplication, and response must be immediate and decisive.
     
  3. Jhym

    Jhym Guest

    Well, the most money I've had at any one point (for all my characters) is about 4 million gold. Right now I just have a few hundred K, mostly because I haven't felt like making any efforts to get more. I think I'm fairly middle class, I don't have any artifacts or expensive baubles, though I've made a few player-artifacts here and there when I could afford the materials.

    The question that would be more interesting is, why do those who have those millions and billions of gold and overflowing chests of artifacts do it? Are they attempting to do some sort of nebulous goal, or have they just gotten into a rut and never realized how much garbage they have?
     
  4. hawkeye_pike

    hawkeye_pike Babbling Loonie
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    To my experience, there always have been and always will be people in that game who have 100 times more money than I do. Why is that so?

    I prefer a playing style where I mostly do things that are fun. Things having to do with community and adventure. I despise tedious tasks like Bulk Order Deeds, Doom Gauntlet hunts, rare collecting and trading etc. That's why I NEVER will be one of the rich people in game. However, I don't think that's a problem. I get along pretty well with medium equipment, and over time an artifact even drops into my lap.

    What does gold mean in UO? Actually, nothing! If you have 100 millions of gold, you could buy pretty much anything that you'll need to equip 5 high-end characters. But then what? What'll be your next goal? Collecting useless rares? Sitting by the bank, counting your checks? Sell your gold for real money?

    It always depends on your goals. Some like collecting stuff and being a merchant. For them, being rich is not a goal but an instrument to do what they like to do. Some like having adventures. For them being rich is not important.
     
  5. Emil Ispep

    Emil Ispep Sage
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    Im pretty rich, yet I almost always have under 5mil gold. On an average day, ill make maybe 50k..? Depends what im doing. The trick is to invest your gold into rare items.. (of recent, there is more risk involved, potentially buying a duped item) The price of most rare items paraells the inflation rate of gold. For example, a few years ago, a bottle of Yew wine could be purchased for around 5mil. Today, it goes for around 25mil.. 10 years ago, I sold "a silver braclet crafted by Corin Gerald" for 5k... and today i slam my head on the table because of what i could sell it for if i still had it.

    Everytime i make a few mil, i run around Luna, or other places that if found that sell rare items. For the most part, nobody sells anything except garbage. But every once and awhile, someone puts up a unique item for sale, you find one in an IDOC, you are present for a live event and get an item, ect ect.

    The problem of inflation can.. (could have been) easily solved with one word: "FINITE" In an economy, if you have an INFINITE supply of materials and gold to be obtained, the value of the currency decreases over time, and the price to purchase somthing increases.

    Every server up, there should be a FINITE amount of raw material to be obtained. On spawning creatures and monsters, there should be a decreasing-as-the-day-goes-on FINITE amount of gold on their corpse. Maybe a maximum amount of gold/material you can obtain in any given day...?

    The only way to *fix* the current economy, is by switching to a new form of currency, and discontinuing gold usage. How to go about doing that is beyond me, because most (ok some) people are crybabys and dont want to loose their billions and billions from scripting.. or running 18 accounts.. or would complain that they can only convert a set amount of their stash into the new coinage.

    The simple fix is to revert to the ol 'Trade & Barter' system. Stop using gold, and trade with items, because they have the real value.
     
  6. Ailish

    Ailish Lore Master
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    I don't know about others, but I get uncomfortable if I don't have about 10 mil across all chars. That is so that I know I won't run out of insurance, I can afford to buy small items that suit my fancy, and also keep up on basics.

    Right now I have around 25 mil (from selling power scrolls mostly, along with a few peerless items) and the most I have had was about 80 mil from selling some event rares that were give to me by a departing player.

    I PvP. I have good PvP suits and good PvP weapons. There are only a couple things I want that I don't have. I leave the gold at the spawns for others in my guild that are less fortunate. I usually don't bother picking up gold off monsters I kill as that is not my purpose in being there and without an old-style BoS it is a wasted effort for me. I have been known to pull the gold off the creatures (such as cu sidhe, when attempting to spawn colored ones) and leave it on the ground for whoever comes along.

    Many have more gold than me, but I am happy with what I have.
     
  7. Usually to sell for Real Life currency. There have been numerous articles surrounding the farming aspect of games where some people make as much as 60,000$+ a month farming/selling ingame currencies for real profit.
     
  8. hawkeye_pike

    hawkeye_pike Babbling Loonie
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    I basically like that idea. However, a finite amount of items/ressources/gold would result in few players owning them, while the rest cannot have them anymore. Then, powergaming/duping/etc will harm "normal" players even more.

    The other idea could be, to balance the value of items more. There shouldn't be too rare (and thus too valuable) items in the game. I haven't thought that one through yet, but in the Early Days, nothing was too expensive, as there were no rares and no Doom Artifacts in game.
     
  9. Harb

    Harb Guest

    I do believe, in fact I'm almost certain, that some folks do make "real life" currency in the salary range you mention. At the top of the after-market sales apparatus, I'm also pretty certain salary ranges go significantly higher. Personally, I don't envy this (the hectic lifestyle, concern of policy change, fear of source, etc), and don't pass any form of judgement on the practice (right, wrong, dupers, non-dupers, scripters, etc). I even believe it may serve a constructive role. Being one of those who has been able to play 60 hours in a week, 15, 2, and 0, each for extended periods of time based on "RL" requirements, I do see them as an outlet for extended interest in some cases where competitiveness, "keeping up with the Jonses," is important to the individual player.

    Where I disagree is that folks can make 60k in RL by farming anything, in fact I can't see this happening at all. Take your pick of any after-market operation, look at what they charge to sell an item, and then calculate what you'd need to do to supply them at say a 50/50 split. Farming "doesn't pay," at least in this framework - even if there's 50 of you farming. Duping however, does. This is not an accusation toward the after-market folks, I'm reasonably sure each uses "suppliers." So suppliers dupe, after market sales can pass it along, just like in-game vendors. The issue here is not legal game play, the numbers can not add up to that conclusion!
     
  10. Emil Ispep

    Emil Ispep Sage
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    Rares are in a world of their own.. In the golden days, the server births were considered the rares, and what few seer/em made items there were as well.

    Why someone would spend millions and millions on a mug shaped like a skull? Because of the uniqueness of the item.. For the purpose of saying "i have this, and you most likely dont" most of the time, their reaction is "i want it/where can i get one?" and thus the market formed. Not sure how you balance a desire for an object, other than making it avaliable to craft/buy somewhere.. or with a unique hue, such as the nest w/ eggs.

    Would you pay 50k for a lock of Elvis's hair? I wouldn't.. but someone will. ;)
     
  11. UOKaiser

    UOKaiser Guest

    You're correct theres no 60k whatever real life cash being made in uo.Those who make any cash have characters in uo,wow,final fantasy,everquest etc.etc.etc. and toghether they make some cash out of it.

    Anyway like i said and was said again people run around whith 5mil gold cause they either dont play in a setting where you need 50mil sword 100mil ring etc.. to compete and a soulseeker is enough for there game play. But others need that money for there rares, collecting, decorating,pvp battles, outfitiing 7 characters per account, museums,auction houses, guild maintanace, house selling,reselling,trading,vender selling,player made town creating- mantanace,role playing,man i can just keep going on thats what make UO great able to do what you like in it thats why I try as much as possible to educate the masses that expect this to be a linear game to be played only the way they play it.

    Just like back in the days the pinnacle of achievement was able to afford a castle and a earlie goal was to be able to afford a boat. Now theres alot of more things to buy.Affording a castle is easy cause the price did not go up from the build price but to ofset that the land value has gone up dramaticaly to keep up whith availability and inflation. The goal is still there and the price to afford one is still as high at it was when 100k made you a billionere from todays standards
     
  12. Pax

    Pax Guest

    Perhaps the answer for MMORPGs is to take a tip from games like Second Life, which transitions Game World money-making into actual Real World money-making, and everyone who plays it is gung-ho for just that. Have never played Second Life, but my kids have, and they say it's one of the oddest games they've ever played because of the *expected* constant interaction between Real World and Game World economies that goes on.

    Be well - Pax
    .
     
  13. UOKaiser

    UOKaiser Guest

    i want to add if a reverse of anything or a change that would make long time systems obsolute would of occur you might as well start whith a fresh new account destroy all homes, destroy all items , erase everyone skills,remove all guilds,Destroy all player made towns, remove all seer history, wipe everything clean that not even the creatures remmeber there path finding. Cause thats really what it will mean a completly new game that almost looks and feels like ultima might as well remove the name also and change it to warcraft the ultima story. Though hopefully we can pay for our subcription in the new trading currency I trade them a wii for 5 months of playing.
     
  14. azmodanb

    azmodanb Grand Poobah
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    I have hundreds of mills, and alot of other items if sold would boost me way up there... I would still be for starting over on the money thing, but only if they were able to fix the dupe bugs that keep happening...

    With each publish making some new dupe bug I would be against it till they figure out WTF is going on. They can make a new gold system every week, if they dont fix the cause of the dupes first it wont make a difference .. ya know?
     
  15. Emil Ispep

    Emil Ispep Sage
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    Truely armageddon. Who did you side with? =)

    I wouldn't stay for the new Age, just because the tens of thousands of hours over the past ten years.. skills, items, history.. *poof* or maybe a *boom* if its gonna be anything like beta..

    I simply don't have the rl time to invest in UO like i did years ago.. but i got tomorrows winning mega millions ticket =).
     
  16. Farsight

    Farsight Crazed Zealot
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    Right now I have about 2 million gold between all of my characters.

    In an average hunt I collect somewhere around 60k gold before moving on to more fun or challenging things. This can take anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour, depending on my connection and how much risk I'm willing to take.

    I have no comments about the UO economy, as I prefer to earn the good stuff myself. Oh the other hand, I have paid 15 million for a suit of armor (paid for by power scrolls).
     
  17. Omnius

    Omnius Crazed Zealot
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    PvPing = up to 200k insurance in a day depending on the quarry.
    Spawning = anywhere between 1 and 10mill a day from scrolls.
    Other = up to 20mill in items in a day.
     
  18. Maplestone

    Maplestone Crazed Zealot
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    60k in each bank box, 5m in a "rainy day fund" (that will probably never be touched), 1m+house placement tool sitting in a box near the door just in case I ever stumble across a big open field in the woods.

    Beyond that, I just gather what I stumble across, no more no less, probably 10-20k per day on average scattered amongst a bunch of characters. I don't really have any goal in mind and I don't feel like grinding for powerscrolls these days.
     
  19. Omnius

    Omnius Crazed Zealot
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    you can just raid for scrolls like everyone else who finds pvm boring and dull.
     
  20. the 4th man

    the 4th man Lore Master
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    This so called inflation, or buying your gold has trashed uo's economy.
    Prices are pathetic, and to have to buy gold, which may be duped is rather assanine. I laugh at those players:coco:.....well, my friends, family, ya know, normal people.

    I make what I can, I rarely buy from vendors.......If I can't earn it, I don't "need"t that bad.


    later
     
  21. Chad Sexington

    Chad Sexington Lore Master
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    The problem with UO inflation vs real world inflation is that minimum wage keeps pace (for the most part). I was sad today, to see some new guy trying to sell an ice white robe for some change and finding no takers. Later on trying to sell his suit for 10k.

    Who cares about the rich or established players. They'll get buy with the buy & resell market. Prices will go up and down and so will their profits.

    Newer players have a harder and harder time getting started.
     
  22. Landicine

    Landicine Seasoned Veteran
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    Lots of interesting responses. It seems there is no consensus on the question since it varies so much depending on playstyle and goals. Which makes sense. A merchant will need to make more per week to stay competitive than a warrior with a complete armor set and no real item-based wants.

    From my experience, I like to have 200k at least on the banks of combat characters for insurance. There have been some disasterous nights (lag + invasion + stacked super fire) where I spent more ready cash than I intended. I probably make a 300k net a week from my vendor, depending on what I'm selling. I probably spend 100k of that on trinkets or crafting supplies.

    I like the idea of "investing" gold in things that will usually go up with inflation, but I do know this can be problematic. Before AoS and after Trammel, many people had houses and needed something else to spend gold on. The "rares" market came out of this. I also know that a lot of rares eventually had common cousins (open books/gargoyle books, cauldrons, hour glass/gargoyle hour glass), so not all of them kept or gained value. Rares speculation has its own problems, so those thinking of trying it should make sure they don't lose the farm.