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Sowelu

Balancing sides

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6 minutes ago, mandalore said:

Monetized EK’s means a instant capitalist baron status for those who can shell out rl money.  That sounds like pay to win to anybody not in the esoteric backer circles.

EKs are vanity projects and social hubs, there would be no p2w in such a setup. Also, running an EK relies on Artcraft to maintain a connection to that player's server and an associated cost for consistent up time would make sense, not saying cash would have to be the only way to get there but it is at least logical. I play GW2 and to keep an arena open you have to pay money or get tokens donated (but even that is a slow drip and won't maintain a player run arena in the long term). No one thinks that's p2w because it's just for fun.

Edited by Lightsig

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48 minutes ago, Lightsig said:

EKs are vanity projects and social hubs, there would be no p2w in such a setup. Also, running an EK relies on Artcraft to maintain a connection to that player's server and an associated cost for consistent up time would make sense, not saying cash would have to be the only way to get there but it is at least logical. I play GW2 and to keep an arena open you have to pay money or get tokens donated (but even that is a slow drip and won't maintain a player run arena in the long term). No one thinks that's p2w because it's just for fun.

I don’t think you understand the depth of what EK’s were supposed to be.  They can be mercantile hubs with vendors, the larger ones having more vendors available.  Those vendors have player made assets in them that then turn the owner a profit.   When thralls are put in it will be even more lucrative for the large EK owners.  Theres a few EK’s out there that have filled guilds coffers. 


40 minutes ago, Andius said:

W/HoA were held up as like these mystical forces of highly skilled players with legendary theorycrafters chained to a desk in some deep dungeon holding all the arcane secrets we could use to win if only we knew them.

wiDfyPp.png

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49 minutes ago, mandalore said:

I don’t think you understand the depth of what EK’s were supposed to be.  They can be mercantile hubs with vendors, the larger ones having more vendors available.  Those vendors have player made assets in them that then turn the owner a profit.   When thralls are put in it will be even more lucrative for the large EK owners.  Theres a few EK’s out there that have filled guilds coffers. 

EKs are a hybridization between player cities, guilds halls, and player housing. I understand it fine and well. I've been playing sandbox MMOs since 1998. Weird flex, I know, but it is important to understand the distinction between capacity and utilization. I played Star Wars Galaxies for several years and while guild halls were often used to setup malls, they weren't innately more successful on the basis of capacity. There are many other market factors and if the game is healthy I will expect that business is driven by player and guild reputation, not just who has the largest RMT-built EK.

Additionally, if the space could be utilized for automated gathering, agriculture, livestock, etc then there would be an inherent benefit to the larger capacity and your concerns would be warranted. However, every impression I've gotten since very early on, and I have no privileges to see the investor forums, is that the EKs are not intended to be a resource producing asset.

Edited by Lightsig
Investor <> Donor

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11 hours ago, Lightsig said:

EKs are a hybridization between player cities, guilds halls, and player housing. I understand it fine and well. I've been playing sandbox MMOs since 1998. Weird flex, I know, but it is important to understand the distinction between capacity and utilization. I played Star Wars Galaxies for several years and while guild halls were often used to setup malls, they weren't innately more successful on the basis of capacity. There are many other market factors and if the game is healthy I will expect that business is driven by player and guild reputation, not just who has the largest RMT-built EK.

Additionally, if the space could be utilized for automated gathering, agriculture, livestock, etc then there would be an inherent benefit to the larger capacity and your concerns would be warranted. However, every impression I've gotten since very early on, and I have no privileges to see the investor forums, is that the EKs are not intended to be a resource producing asset.

 

Player A has a mountain citadel, the capital parcel, a half dozen other parcels and buildings for all of them.  I got that from my kickstarter purchase and will be ready to slot vendors and factory thralls the day I get them.  Player A could potentially slot dozens of NPC's.  I'll be able to populate my vendors with any excess gear and I'll have a team of guildies ready to help run the business that will be my trader city EK on day 1 or as soon as we have excess to sell. 

 

Player B is a new player in a new guild.  They will need to spends weeks/months farming raw materials to be able to even get their EK's going, as they are starting from nothing, and thats just to get basic EK land and buildings.  Player B starts with zero capability to slot NPC's. 

 

Which is more likely to gain that initial grip over the economy and hold it?  Which has the advantage not available to the other one? 


40 minutes ago, Andius said:

W/HoA were held up as like these mystical forces of highly skilled players with legendary theorycrafters chained to a desk in some deep dungeon holding all the arcane secrets we could use to win if only we knew them.

wiDfyPp.png

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1 hour ago, mandalore said:

Player A has a mountain citadel, the capital parcel, a half dozen other parcels and buildings for all of them.  I got that from my kickstarter purchase and will be ready to slot vendors and factory thralls the day I get them.  Player A could potentially slot dozens of NPC's.  I'll be able to populate my vendors with any excess gear and I'll have a team of guildies ready to help run the business that will be my trader city EK on day 1 or as soon as we have excess to sell. 

Player B is a new player in a new guild.  They will need to spends weeks/months farming raw materials to be able to even get their EK's going, as they are starting from nothing, and thats just to get basic EK land and buildings.  Player B starts with zero capability to slot NPC's. 

Which is more likely to gain that initial grip over the economy and hold it?  Which has the advantage not available to the other one? 

Player A is an established player who actually has stuff to sell on NPCs while Player B doesn't have anything to sell anyway, Player B could and should work with their guild to pool said resources to build their EK faster so they aren't at as much of a disadvantage once the do have things to sell, and Player A is still gated by import mechanics so anything they wheel and deal to get will still be subject to those rules if it is to be used.  Players who start later than others will always be at a disadvantage at some level or another, and that can never (nor should) be completely eliminated.

This is all diverting from the OPs topic, but if there is any space that is safe for ACE to monetize without significantly messing with the game balance it is the EKs, and we will ALL want them to monetize something to a degree because we all clearly have grand plans for a lot more development post-launch, and that costs money. In the context of the discussion about finding ways to reward winning conditions without giving too much of a rolling leg-up, awarding EK funnery does seem to me a very good compromise, but if they are going to monetize it then I'd also guess that it is largely off the table as a possible solution for addressing balanced rewards.  Probably a lot of folks here to don't care about EKs as much and who would raise a stink at that anyway.

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44 minutes ago, starrshipcs said:

, but if there is any space that is safe for ACE to monetize without significantly messing with the game balance it is the EKs, and we will ALL want them to monetize something to a degree because we all clearly have grand plans for a lot more development post-launch, and that costs money.

They have already monetized it, some backers have thousands of dollars in Ek purchases.  I gifted a mountain citadel and the required capital parcel to my guild (those aren't cheap).  Depending if they follow through with original relics ideas then larger EK's will be able to house more people thus giving more players access to relics there (those buffs won't be huge but they will add up over time and giving it to a lot of people is an advantage backers will have over new guilds).  I care nothing for EK's personally but I do believe they will be the door wars to the economy in the game and established guilds will quickly establish a stranglehold on major economies. 

 

The can monetize through weapon skins, ek skins, mount skins, titles, banners, pennants and VIP and never alter the out come of a single fight.

Edited by mandalore

40 minutes ago, Andius said:

W/HoA were held up as like these mystical forces of highly skilled players with legendary theorycrafters chained to a desk in some deep dungeon holding all the arcane secrets we could use to win if only we knew them.

wiDfyPp.png

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5 hours ago, mandalore said:

 

Player A has a mountain citadel, the capital parcel, a half dozen other parcels and buildings for all of them.  I got that from my kickstarter purchase and will be ready to slot vendors and factory thralls the day I get them.  Player A could potentially slot dozens of NPC's.  I'll be able to populate my vendors with any excess gear and I'll have a team of guildies ready to help run the business that will be my trader city EK on day 1 or as soon as we have excess to sell. 

 

Player B is a new player in a new guild.  They will need to spends weeks/months farming raw materials to be able to even get their EK's going, as they are starting from nothing, and thats just to get basic EK land and buildings.  Player B starts with zero capability to slot NPC's. 

 

Which is more likely to gain that initial grip over the economy and hold it?  Which has the advantage not available to the other one? 

Of course a more competitive team that is able to produce more will have an advantage as a supplier, and they should, but there is still a lot up in the air before we can reach any absolute determination for how significant a factor capacity will be.

We don't yet know how accessible EKs will be overall. We also don't know, comparatively, how practical it will be to buy gear for campaigns outside of the campaign if there are also locations to buy from player-ran vendors within the campaign -- this would also be dependent upon import limitations.

It is a major balancing factor in the end and of course no one wants to think their investment is not worth the money paid, but tbh, should it reward an advantage in game? Entertainment is so much more abstract in terms of value, if it becomes a matter of drawing correlations between the value of a purchase and the success in game then you will never hear the end of P2W complaints. I even paid over a grand but I care much more about the long term success of the game than seeing some fiscal equivalence provided in game to match my pledge package investment.

What I will concede is that we have strayed far off topic, but since we are guildies I'm sure it would be easy enough to pick up this discussion over discord!

Edited by Lightsig

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1 hour ago, mandalore said:

I care nothing for EK's personally but I do believe they will be the door wars to the economy in the game and established guilds will quickly establish a stranglehold on major economies. 

The can monetize through weapon skins, ek skins, mount skins, titles, banners, pennants and VIP and never alter the out come of a single fight.

These things are not untrue at all.  The import rules still mitigate the potential advantages for campaign play so I don't think the impact on balancing will be very significant, any more than tethering export allowances to campaign victory status would be and for the same reasons, but this is one of those early adopter boons that can be hard to overcome; if you have the resources at launch then you will likely get and hold the economic advantage for at least a while.

Of course, those who intend to capitalize on this must do so right at launch in order to "establish their brand" because even spending a whole bunch on EK down the line to try and catch up may not actually give the same advantage as those who spent the same at/prior to launch got because latecomers will have to chip away at established go-to economies.  It also depends on what value you actually place on gold, or any other forms of payment they may intend to allow (like dust, embers, etc).

Vendor searches could be a way to further mitigate this particular issue.  Query the item you want and get a list of vendors on the various public EKs with some sort handles.  But I digress, that is a totally different balancing conversation.

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2 hours ago, starrshipcs said:

Vendor searches could be a way to further mitigate this particular issue.  Query the item you want and get a list of vendors on the various public EKs with some sort handles.  But I digress, that is a totally different balancing conversation.

I agree with this 100%. Vendor searches would be a great addition to give full market visibility and provide players a broad purview of available products. How robust that system would be, list priority, general sorting, filtering options, etc, would dictate how much of a contribution it makes to balancing any imperialistic expectations that would come from EK rewards provided by pledge packages (or the cash shop).

Edited by Lightsig
typo

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1 hour ago, Lightsig said:

I agree with this 100%. Vendor searches would be a great addition to give full market visibility and provide players a broad purview of available products. How robust that system would be, list priority, general sorting, filtering options, etc, would dictate how much of a contribution it makes to balancing any imperialistic expectations that would come from EK rewards provided by pledge packages (or the cash shop).

So every vendor on every ek would link to an “auction house”?  You’re just removing the entire social aspect of the EK’s then. 


40 minutes ago, Andius said:

W/HoA were held up as like these mystical forces of highly skilled players with legendary theorycrafters chained to a desk in some deep dungeon holding all the arcane secrets we could use to win if only we knew them.

wiDfyPp.png

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14 minutes ago, mandalore said:

So every vendor on every ek would link to an “auction house”?  You’re just removing the entire social aspect of the EK’s then. 

Vendor searching is a completely different system than an auction house.

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32 minutes ago, mandalore said:

So every vendor on every ek would link to an “auction house”?  You’re just removing the entire social aspect of the EK’s then. 

Vendor search, in my mind, is a location tool only; you would still need to go to the EK to make the purchase.

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6 hours ago, mandalore said:

The can monetize through weapon skins, ek skins, mount skins, titles, banners, pennants and VIP and never alter the out come of a single fight.

That wont be nearly enough. Likely they will offer some sorts of EK items in the cash shop, along with cosmetics and I suspect items that reduce the grind they have added recently. 

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1 hour ago, starrshipcs said:

Vendor search, in my mind, is a location tool only; you would still need to go to the EK to make the purchase.

I doubt they will do something with that qol for launch.  That def sounds like something the game should have but def ain’t gona have it for the first year. 


40 minutes ago, Andius said:

W/HoA were held up as like these mystical forces of highly skilled players with legendary theorycrafters chained to a desk in some deep dungeon holding all the arcane secrets we could use to win if only we knew them.

wiDfyPp.png

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15 hours ago, mandalore said:

I doubt they will do something with that qol for launch.  That def sounds like something the game should have but def ain’t gona have it for the first year. 

Agreed.  No way that will happen anywhere near launch; WAY too many things that still need done for the rest of the game.

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