[MUD-Dev] Economy

Travis Casey efindel at earthlink.net
Wed Dec 12 15:10:34 New Zealand Daylight Time 2001

Wednesday, December 12, 2001, 6:04:08 AM, Vincent Archer wrote:

> It is far more easier and far more "rewarding" to powerlevel than
> it is to "powerskill". Powerlevel is usually more varied, with
> tactics adapted to surroundings and the mobs coming in, while
> powerskilling is exactly the same activity at skill 1 and at skill
> 800 (and thus intrinsically more boring for most people). In
> addition, levelling adds to the character's worth (in the form of
> loot), and thus can be sustained indefinitely, whereas skilling
> depletes a character's worth, eventually leading to a stumbling
> block where the character can no longer afford it unless he gets
> help (in the form of player sales, guild donations, whatever).

> As for raising skill requiring overproduction, there's no real way
> to do this much better (that I can see; but then, I'm not that
> creative).

And now for some semi-insane, possibly demented, quite probably
unworkable, ideas:

 - Get rid of skills entirely.  Go to a pure class/level system -- if
   you want to be a good smith, you have to add levels in the "smith"
   class.  (Note that a class/level system doesn't have to have
   exclusive classes -- you can allow player to have as many classes
   as they want.)

 - Have different classes advance in different ways.  For example, in
   the paper RPGs Bushido and Fantasy Wargaming, there are multiple
   types of experience points.  Killing things gets XP that can raise
   your level as a warrior; doing magic gets XP that can raise your
   level as a wizard; and so on.

This leads to the question: What should smiths, tailors, merchants,
etc. get their "type" of XP for?  Here's more semi-insane answers:

 - Questing.  You could have smith's quests, tailor's quests,
   whatever's quests.  They can go out to seek out the lost lore of
   the ancient smiths/tailors/whatevers.  There can be quests to try
   to become the royal smith/tailor/whatever.  There can be quests to
   seek out some mythical source of metal/cloth/whatever.

 - Use.  Imagine a smith getting XP every time someone uses one of
   his/her swords to kill something.  Or a tailor getting XP every
   time someone wears one of his/her garments.  For extra fun,
   increase the XP award according to the level of the monster killed,
   the social status of the person wearing the garment, or whatever.

 - Sales.  Take the old D&D viewpoint -- you get XP for making money.
   When an item is sold, the maker gets some XP for it, depending on
   how much it sold for.  The seller gets XP towards his/her merchant
   class, depending on the difference between how much he/she spent
   for it and how much he/she sold it for.  (Something would have to
   be done about XP for items that are found instead of bought.)

>>> My objection to a vendor system is that personal interaction and
>>> the resulting community-building flies straight out the window.

> I've already supported this point of view.

> Adding the crafter name to the items is very good, because it allows
> people to figure whom they should give return business to.

Definitely a good idea, IMHO.  Not only that, but if you're going to
keep track of who crafted an item for one of the above option ideas,
you might as well also make that info visible.

For extra fun, you can then make it possible for people to forge
other crafter's marks on items.  :-)

Travis Casey
efindel at earthlink.net

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