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Why having a vendor is useless

Discussion in 'UHall' started by hawkeye_pike, Mar 21, 2009.

  1. hawkeye_pike

    hawkeye_pike Babbling Loonie
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    Today, I took my vendor out of business. I had a well-stocked vendor somewhere in Britannia. Runes had been layed out regularly to advertise the vendor. It sold very decent runic crafted armor and weapons, high-end jewelry, some artifacts. I sold items that are prized on Luna vendors for 200k for 5k. Jewelry others sell for 10k I sold for 1k. Still, the vendor hardly created any revenue. In some weeks, the vendor fees were higher than the income.

    Problem is, having a vendor outside Luna hardly makes sense. Luna vendors are scanned by scripted characters and items are entered into a database. Finding items you need in Luna is a hundred times more easy than finding them on a "regular" vendor. The vendor system thus is very unbalanced.

    I hope that the UO developers will some day come up with a solution for this. Meanwhile, I will cease all my vendor activities. And no, I will not place a vendor in Luna. That is out of question.
     
  2. Snakeman

    Snakeman UO Forum Moderator
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    Just do as many of my friends & I have done. Have a friend that has a Luna home, put up vendors with real prices not inflated ones. You'll do a booming business while the others have their items sit & eat up what profits they did have. Why cut off your nose to spite your face (for it seems you enjoy vendors & selling at a fair price), if ya can beat them fairly (because no one takes the time to go look) beat them at their own game with their same tools.
     
  3. I would strongly disagree with this. I have had my vendor house in 2 different remote locations in Malas, and now in Tokuno, and have made as much in the past few years I've had it going as some people that own inside the wall Luna houses. It's all a matter of what you sell, how often you stock, and how much you advertise. If you're not getting good results, try expanding your inventory to include consumable items.
     
  4. Tomas_Bryce

    Tomas_Bryce Rares Collector Extraordinaire | Rares Fest Host
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    Well, Luna does have a huge advantage. But it is a lazy man's world. I enjoy having a mall outside of Luna and working for it.

    I do wish that developers would throw a bone to non-Luna vendor owners though. How about giving us a small break on vendor fees? It would only be fair and makes sense too.

    That is all I think that we need. A 25% discount for fees outside of Luna zone!
     
  5. Fink

    Fink Guest

    Sad to see another non rip-off shop go out of business. You'd think with items priced as cheaply as yours you'd be doing a roaring trade but it seems hardly anyone shops outside the square anymore.

    I do agree there needs to be a decent system for vendors. If 3rd party scriptors can build and maintain a database using client bots, surely there could be some legitimate server-side/server-wide vendor registry built, perhaps added as part of the regular shard maintenance.

    There also needs to be improvement with the vendors themselves. Innovations to make restocking less of a chore, for example. You could have the vendor indicate at a glance if it's made a sale since last queried. Perhaps have the name suffixed with [sale], or named in another colour, visible only to the owner. A simple "all names" command would show which need restocking.
     
  6. NewThunder

    NewThunder Guest

    Why not? I think Luna is a great place to shop and to have vendors. As a shopper everything you could need is often stocked in Luna; as a seller you will not find more traffic then in Luna. As the saying goes retail is about LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION. I can hardly keep my vendors stocks on Atlantic and Chessy, and on Legends I no longer stock my vendor because i don't want to go over a billion gold on the vendor.

    Full Discloser: I own 8 Luna houses (7 on Legends and 1 on Chessy), so I may be a little biased for Luna!
     
  7. Tomas_Bryce

    Tomas_Bryce Rares Collector Extraordinaire | Rares Fest Host
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    Because Luna is ugly and hurts your eyes. It is true! My friends sister's babysitter told me that she got eye cancer from spending too much time in Luna.
     
  8. Shioni

    Shioni Guest

    *tempted to buy Pikes store out and sell in Luna*
     
  9. DeadBob

    DeadBob Ancient Alien
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    There are successful non-Luna vendors. On Atlantic many come to mind: Polly's for crafted consumables, Maling's Northern Star and Julia's Merchantile of Tara for IDOC specials, the Book Store, Treasure Trove, Mystic Garden, Sinful Candies, Robb's.

    Luna is a great big market. We mostly shop Luna because, usually, the item we want is there or we just want to browse the vast offerings. But we will buy an item we want at the lowest price we can find no matter where we find it.

    The key to success seems to be predictability. You will have a successful vendor IF players come to rely on you to have what they want at a decent price. It takes daily effort over a long period of time before players start to think of a certain vendor when they want a certain item. Once players expect to find what they want at your vendor, they will keep coming back until you stop having what they want.
     
  10. NewThunder

    NewThunder Guest


    I have a special potion on my luna vendors that can cure that, its only 55 million gold!
     
  11. MalagAste

    MalagAste Belaern d'Zhaunil
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    I think Luna is a toilet waiting to be flushed.... and I wish it would flush right out into the void which surrounds it...... course that's my opinion......

    The only reason I shop there is in desperation cause none of my "non" Luna vendors had the particular item I was needing. Now.... I'll tell you something.... I am likely the only person I know that doesn't use the afore mentioned program... I refuse.... that takes out 98% of the "discovery"... If that's the only way people shop then they are missing out of 95% of the deals....

    I shop by keeping a book of my favorite "discoveries" one I typically make myself from wandering the lands from one corner to the next and checking every vendor along the way....

    Not only do I run into some long lost friends this way... Thank the stars.... but I also find some beautiful inspirations for home deco and design, as well as discover things I NEVER knew existed in the game...

    Why just yesterday I made such a discovery.... I found out in the middle of a forest... ok more like on the edge .... a lovely lonely white tree with a couple of dragon skulls nearby.... I swear I've never seen that before...

    Occasionally I discover some really neat place to hold an event.... or a beautiful place to take someone special.... or for me... a Totally AWESOME spot for some good RP event.... or something interesting for some trivia very few would know the answer to...

    So many people automate this game to the point it's just plain BORING.... and then they wonder why they are bored... how many tell me they "know" everything there is to know about UO.... and I chuckle inside knowing they are wrong.... How many tell me they know all of UO... and how few really do. Shame really... I know some who have played this game for all 11 years... and they have forgotten what the land really looks like.... How many more wouldn't know their way from Brit to Yew without a rune or map... Or how many know how to find the hole in the wall of Luna even. Where the pyramid is in Malas... Talked to the sphinx and gotten their fortunes told....

    How few know that there are missing tiles in Doom, Nu'Jelm and other places... like New Haven...

    Played BagBall in the BagBall arena.....

    Know how to get to the Cemetery in Yew from the Abbey... Or that Yew has a Stable or even the Flour Mill in Yew.... Know the way to the lighthouse in the lost lands from the Jail in Yew....

    I think some folk would find themselves a whole heck of a lot less bored if they took the time to discover the game and stopped trying to automate it.
     
  12. Tomas_Bryce

    Tomas_Bryce Rares Collector Extraordinaire | Rares Fest Host
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    Deadbob: It is far more difficult to find a tenant nowadays for your mall if it is not present in Luna. All of the shops you mentioned are primarily one man shows at this point (AFAIK). That is not really so much fun. 2 years ago I had 15-18 different tenants at my mall... now the number is down to like 3.

    If we had even a 10% discount on vendor fees, it would give us a selling point that we can market. Sure, I can be at the bank 24/7 and gate but seeing how everyone uses Luna bank now.. I might as well just move to Luna instead of spending my time at that ridiculous bank.
     
  13. Flora Green

    Flora Green Guest

    I also disagree with this. While I don't make a ton of gold in general since I mainly sell plants, I have never had a Luna wall house or vendor and always have good business overall. There are dry spells, but that has always happened with plants. I have a Zento location inside the city and traffic there on Origin is VERY minimal. Yet, I do well enough. I also had a provision shop there that did decent business during the short time it was up.
     
  14. I love to shop i wonder the lands looking for nice places to do so. that being said when i need this or that its nice to be able to look and know ok i can go here and get it rather than spend 45 min looking for it. much like uoassit its time they added some usefull things. that help and are not bad for the game.
     
  15. DeadBob

    DeadBob Ancient Alien
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    Ahh Thomas, I love the Treasure Trove. I remember the first time I followed a gate a couple years ago and that place was hopping like a Ren Faire in full swing. It was exciting and fun just to be there.

    But to have a place like Luna you need more than a 10% bailout :) You need ...Luna: permanant moongate, and anchors like a bank & NPC shops.
     
  16. Emil Ispep

    Emil Ispep Sage
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    Personally, id like to spend millions and millions of gold on old seer/rare items.. Yew Wine, Mistas Cider.. white food.. oh im buying green rubble plants too..

    Ah.. but even in Luna, nothing really.
     
  17. Sarsmi

    Sarsmi Grand Poobah
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    I probably have one of the best "outside of Luna" vendors on Baja, and it is a bit of work to keep it going, but its probably my second most favorite thing to do in UO (filling vendors fufills my OCD needs quite nicely. ;))

    Things like jewelry and armor sell poorly, simply because supply outweighs demand, and it's a pain to look for something that has specific mods on it. Much easier to advertise what you need and have the seller come to you. The only reason I sell any armor at all I think is because I price it all at 5k, and quite a bit of it is barbed/horned kit rejects I pick up from idocs.

    So if you want to sell things like jewelry/armor/weapons you can try something I did during my brief stint on europa, which was to have a couple bags locked down with the pieces in them and a messageboard for people to make bids on. Then I would put things out for sale for the bidders. This required minimal effort on my part and resulted in no vendor fees.

    Auctions are another way to go, and I think you can do quite well with good pieces. Lower range pieces will not do as well typically.

    If you want to persist in running vendors the old fashioned ways, try to come up with other things to sell that will get people to visit. The majority of my vendors are "service" vendors, they supply things that most vendors do not, because they are cheap to purchase or are crafted. This includes all of my carpentry item vendors, repair deed vendors, engraving tool vendors, etc. Basically the vendor fees for these items are minimal, so the only trick in making a (very tiny) profit or staying in the black is to keep them well stocked.

    Having a decent rune library is another way to get people to visit, as is running some sort of museum or attraction. Depending on how much effort you want to put into it, you *can* get people to your house to buy your goods. However it may not be viable for you time or effort wise, and you may want to look into renting a vendor spot in luna, if you can find one cheap (or free).
     
  18. Tomas_Bryce

    Tomas_Bryce Rares Collector Extraordinaire | Rares Fest Host
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    Thank you! Actually, only thing you need to compete with Luna is hard-working merchants. Alas, those are difficult to find these days. However, I will not turn down a bailout :p
     
  19. Splup

    Splup Guest

    I only buy stuff by using these search webpages.

    Just can't be bothered to go throught tons and tons of vendors, bags and items, when I can just select the mods I need and it the page shows me exactly which vendors holds the item I'm looking for.
     
  20. The fastest way for EA/Mythic to "fix" the Luna problem, and a lot of the inflation in the game, is to offer a method of vendor search of their own. If I could look up Violet Courage, for example, I would see it selling in Luna for 250k, or somewhere else, like Hawkeye's shop...for example...for 10k. How long before the Luna prices would have to come down and compete.

    But we know it won't happen. Too much work, too much money to be lost by EA/Mythic and some people that seem to get some preferred status.
     
  21. MorganaLeFey

    MorganaLeFey Guest

    Would be nice if the developer's did the same thing, but make it all inclusive. Can you imagine if all vendors in a shard gets listed like that? Ah well, one can only hope I suppose. :D
     
  22. MorganaLeFey

    MorganaLeFey Guest

    GMTA! :lol:
     
  23. curlybeard

    curlybeard Seasoned Veteran
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    I disagree. Vendor organization makes such a huge difference. Luna vendors because of that scripted website seem to be spending less time on organizing their wares. It is basically just thrown in to the pack with various other unrelated items. Vendors no longer have useful descriptive names. Plus there is a focus on certain high profit items.

    I have several runes to well organized shops outside of Luna. It is more convenient to check these outside Luna shops given the effort the seller spends on making needed items easy to find. Plus stuff is usually cheaper. As an added bonus these shops are generally more enjoyable to browse.
     
  24. Lore Master

    Lore Master Guest

    I agree with you hawkeye_pike Luna Vendors get way too much attention while my isolated vendor house gets very few visits.
    • Not only that but some guy on my shard who owns a vendor house out side of luna marks hundreds of runes through out the day each and every day and i and many others witnessed him and his friends picking up everyone elses vendor runes many times including mine to hurt his competition very upsetting.
    By the way His friends are always marking runes for him as well and i am the only player marking runes for my vendor house.
     
  25. DENNAR

    DENNAR Journeyman
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    Hit a nail on the head much?

    Many will say they have shops that they consider good one. Thomas makes a valid point about others running vendors in shops outside of Luna as well. The Luna situation added to my leaving UO.

    Some people do like to wander around and shop, but most players want to find an item fast and get back to PLAYING UO. There is a now famous cheat web site that helps shoppers shop LUNA so players dont have even say "Vendor Browse"

    But it is also funny how many cheats and cheaters seem to be found selling wares in LUNA. Makes ya think now don't it?
     
  26. lham52

    lham52 Guest

    Naturally the decision is yours - and the decision is made easier by your bottom line but to say that no one visits any but Luna vendors is flat wrong. Looking for bargains among the non-Luna vendors is a daily, often twice daily, routine for legions of us shoppers.
     
  27. Loral

    Loral Guest


    I see a potential gold sink too. No up front fee but something like 20% of sales goes to the game as a fee for the service. Compared to all the stuff that doesn't sell now it would be a bargain. Put an npc in the shops that sell what you are trying to sell, Jewelry at the Jeweler, Apples at the Fruit Vendor etc. Then give them a BOD like filterable interface.

    It's probably more work than anyone is willing to do, but it would be nice.
     
  28. Viper09

    Viper09 Grand Poobah
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    I do agree that having vendors outside of Luna hardly makes sense. At least in my case. I use to love putting up vendors at my house to sell everything that I "find." My house is right outside moonglow in fel. Problem is, that it is in fel. I could make some sales, although to actually make a decent profit over those damn vendor fees it would probably take a miracle. These vendor fees really hurt those fel vendors.
     
  29. Beleg Megil

    Beleg Megil Guest

    I run a succesful shop and I'm not in Luna. My prices are fair and so are the people that place vendors with me, or they get booted. They do not list their items to any website, the only advertising they do is by rune drops, gating to the shop, or word of mouth. I think most of my folks are too paranoid about account security to use price listing sites or any 3rd party programs...hell, it took me 8 years to even figure it was ok to dl UOAssist and I still only have it on one acct. because it feels like cheating. I still shop occasionally in Luna but I never got the whole concept of "the prices are higher because its convienient". Every location at the end of a rune or a gate is only 2 steps away, no matter if its in Tokuno, Luna or the perimeter jungle of Buc's Den. Places like Travel Lodge Tower, Charmed Butterfly, Empire and many others have done outstanding without being in Luna. I ran a shop for a couple years near the Brit Gate that did awesome business and back then I never had to drop a single rune. Granted there was no Luna square then but it wouldn't have mattered. Patience and hard work are what makes a vendor worth coming to, and the willingness to change with shoppers' tastes. Stick with it. If one type of item doesn't sell, drop it and try something different. Add variety, have a gimmick like free use of dye tubs, a library, free enhanced bandies or strength petal plants set for everyone's use. No matter where you are located, people will start taking notice and adding your rune into their daily "Must Check" vendor rune book.
     
  30. You don't choose to list your house with the 3rd party vendor sites, they have a script that checks a preprogrammed route of vendor houses. You can't control whether they list your house or not.
     
  31. Beleg Megil

    Beleg Megil Guest


    Ew, I don't like that at all...
     
  32. Farsight

    Farsight Crazed Zealot
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    Please do.

    Fact, I have a ring on my vendor in the same building where Pike's was (no longer there, now that BoS's are back, I'm converting to hides sales) which I tried to sell for 200k gold. I've seen lesser rings sell in Luna for 10 million gold.

    In other words, somebody could have made at least 9.8 million gold from that ring (which is now my archer's ring) in an often advertised, well stocked shop.

    The whole house has had 3-5 vendors with various goods, all of which have been well stocked and nothing has sold.

    But my vendor will stay put. I now stock non runic crafted leather armor and will soon add hides to my inventory. Those things are cheap and I don't have to stock often, so my vendor costs are relatively safe.
     
  33. jelinidas

    jelinidas Guest

    This is only half true. One site you can ask to be listed even if your outside Luna.
     
  34. JC the Builder

    JC the Builder Crazed Zealot
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    The problem isn't vendor sites or Luna, it is that weapons/armor/jewelry have such low turn over that they are difficult to sell with any regularity.
     
  35. Sarsmi

    Sarsmi Grand Poobah
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    That's definitely true, and it's why I sell mid range stuff at 5k a piece and hoard the really good items I get for pesonal use or for people who are looking for something specific. I don't care if my armor/weapon/jewelry vendors make regular sales or not since the vendor fees are minimal (1k a day or so), so I just need to sell one piece every few days to meet costs.
     
  36. I think that it would be more reasonable (and satisfying!) to burn Luna to the ground.

    Problem solved. :)
     
  37. guum

    guum Guest

    "I should be able to breathe hydrogen, dammit. I'm not breathing that oxygen crap the rest of you breathe."

    Luna's ugly, but it's just a mall. It's just like that ugly mall ten miles from my apartment: I go, I get what I need, and I leave. How much worse would it be if there were little mall bits scattered all across the countryside? (If you live in suburbia, I'm sorry that you're already living the nightmare) Personally, I'm glad that the obnoxious "L33T PVP WEPS L@@K!!11!" vendors are nicely confined to a small corner of my least favorite subserver. And I have a vendor there that does a brisk trade on the inflated and easily-searched economy -- a luxury that, in the true spirit of democracy and capitalism, anyone can easily secure for the, to my mind, very reasonable weekly fee of 25k gold. You can farm that up in about 20 minutes now with the new gold weight.

    As a side note, though, I think it would be great if EA integrated a vendor search engine of their own that covered all of Britannia.
     
  38. Yep. That's what I said.
     
  39. It would be nice if New Magincia, when it is rebuilt, is turned into a UO Mall where every account can place one vendor, and no new houses. And there would be a "Mall Guide" to find any vendor or item.
     
  40. Petra Fyde

    Petra Fyde Peerless Chatterbox
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    hmm, while that might be an interesting concept, I can't say I agree with you on that one.

    My personal opinion would be that turning Magincia (A faction stronghold btw) into a giant Mall would be a horrible idea.

    Again, that's just my personal opinion, and as the saying goes 'one man's meat is another man's poison' It's an idea that's likely to get some support, just not from me.
     
  41. Uvtha

    Uvtha Grand Poobah
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    We'd be happy to have a new vendor, where ever it may be, if you were bored enough to work one up on siege. :D
     
  42. Warpig Inc

    Warpig Inc Babbling Loonie
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    I put out the ideal about putting a few runebooks on podiums at the other end of Luna Bank from the moongate. Grassy areas at the smith and tailor end. The runebooks would have free recall. Players with boondock vendor houses could place a rune in the books. At server down the runes are wiped for the new day. Runes placed show the characters name that placed them in the book and only one per character/account. Maybe the books teleport you there over a recall version to aviod the dill weeds think it be cute to block a recall spot.
     
  43. hawkeye_pike

    hawkeye_pike Babbling Loonie
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    The problem mostly exists if you're trying to sell "specialized" items, like

    - armor with magic mods
    - weapons with magic mods
    - jewelry

    Because people usually are looking for very specific items, and it is practiaclly impossible finding those with the usual vendor browsing method. It would take you months to find an appropriate piece.

    The (illegal) vendor search engine for Luna solves this problem. However, it only works for Luna. Which makes running those vendors outside Luna pretty much useless.

    Of course, I could advertise my vendor even more and supply a greater variety of wares, but hell, it would be 50 times more work than having a vendor with a search engine feature, like those in Luna. And to me, it isn't worth the effort.

    I think either this search engine has to be removed (which is I think is difficult or impossible), or other players has to be given a similar official feature. For example, officially build such a site and allow 1 vendor per account to be entered into the database. The vendor inventory of those should be scanned daily, no matter where they're standing.

    [Edit: This is only ONE example of many in UO, where the honest player has no chance to compete, because others are utilizing illegal tools.]
     
  44. ZidjiN

    ZidjiN Babbling Loonie
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    Im not sure how this work but im 100% sure that it doesnt only scan luna vendors. Ive been surprised many times when i use this site that i get vendors thats not in luna. On europa shard that is.
     
  45. GalenKnighthawke

    GalenKnighthawke Grand Poobah
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    Seeking out an item with specific mods that isn't an artifact is indeed well-near-impossible without a Luna vendor.

    I didn't say impossible, just well-near it.

    However, I've noticed of late that those items are a hard sell even INSIDE Luna. People seem to trust their lucked-up tamers more than looking for items on vendors. Further, everyone's needs are so individuated that your item may never find a customer even if you DO have a Luna vendor. A +13 Taming, +15 Lore, +15 Swords, LMC 8 bracelet (can bracelets have 4 properties), would be great for Swords-Chiv-Tamer, but that's not a common template, so your item can hang out for a long time and never sell.

    Honestly I'd just chalk that up to a quirk of the contemporary UO economy.

    I make good money from a non-Luna vendor, and great money from a Luna vendor.

    -Galen's player
     
  46. Dragonchilde

    Dragonchilde Guest

    You know the problem with that script vendor engine?

    it doesn't get all the vendors. I've had a luna vendor for over a month now, and still don't show up.

    It doesn't affect my sales, honestly. I sell leather, mostly... I don't think I've sold a single other thing, even with plants at 500 per. but i've still managd to make a few million that way... I title my vendor with "60k Spined" and I can't keep the stuff in stock. The only problem is getting th emotivation to farm leather, since I don't script.
     
  47. RD Gumbie

    RD Gumbie Guest

    It is a huge advantage to have a vendor in luna and be on that site. I have 9 vendors in Luna and would not open one outside of luna, I also price all my stuff lower than everyone else using that site which helps me sell even more. I'm actually looking to start up a few vendors on another shard atm but I'm finding no openings (lots of the luna houses arent vendor houses)

    Another thing that you cant beat it for is jewlery, weps and armor when looking for a specific piece, Have you seen all the rings and braclets you would have to look through to find one that would interest you?

    Id love to see UO set up thier own system like this and maybe another zone like luna with a gate there from Luna, its stupid to see half of the luna houses not being used when they could have vendors at them.
     
  48. Hopeful

    Hopeful Guest

    I wanted to place a few vendors to sell all the extra stuff I looted earned or crafted. So I decided to look around awhile to gauge the market for pricing. I found alot of the same stuff I had was way overpriced and plentiful. At this point I realized that if I dont sell stuff for dirt and move it itll just cost me gold. Then I thought "can I ever use this stuff?". hmmmm..... If i could I wouldnt be selling it....
    So I plan on doing a 1 time only sale to purge and clean house. Ill laugh later when I see some of it forsale in luna. To me it seems like theres more vendors than players so if someone wants to carry all that extra stock good for them.
    Ive reached the point that the only things useful to me are already on my chars. The rest is just taking up space. There are many things I will never part with but I think we all have too much junk.
     
  49. Beer_Cayse

    Beer_Cayse Guest

    I used to shop Luna only when I was tired of running all over creation looking for something on other vendors. However, the bulk of my shopping was done totally outside Luna and I had 6 books of runes to spots.

    I'd ask you to rethink your stance, but since I've stopped playing I can't tell you *I* would be a customer! <shrug>
     
  50. Tomas_Bryce

    Tomas_Bryce Rares Collector Extraordinaire | Rares Fest Host
    Stratics Veteran

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    I wish!

    Most likely we just get more invasions of Brit bank instead. The last one killed the Brit bank on Atlantic and now it is all Luna. This is extremely annoying because now I have to go to Luna if I want to gate to my mall. That along with dozens of other factors means that now I am starting to go through my vast inventories and preparing to shut down what used to be the last hyper mall in Trammel on Atlantic.

    All the changes, may it be invasions or scripts, just keep raising the chips against anyone that is not in Luna zone. A level playing field is all that we have been asking for but I suppose this is not a high priority in the big scheme of things. At some point, you are just not willing to put in anymore work to fight a rising tide and I am quickly reaching that point like Hawkeye.