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Removing Items From Circulation

Randy Magnum

Active Member
I haven't come across any bind on equip or bind on pickup items, and up to this point, there really is no need for testing purposes. However, once live, that has a large detrimental affect on the games economy. I can get, for example, a Thieves blade and use it till i outgrow it and give to an alt and then he can give it away. It never leaves circulation and drives down any value it had since any other thieves blade dropped will be added to circulation. I'm sure you are well aware of this and I am not telling you anything new, but is there a plan to introduce bind on equip/pickup to the game? Having to repair items before they break will probably not remove much.
 

Sarsberry

New Member
No, please no! Bind on equip stuff is such a bland, immersion breaking mechanic. It makes items feel less tangible, and less exciting to acquire.

I understand the economic benefit of such a system, but maybe it would be better to brainstorm some different ideas. Perhaps items could be recycled for resources, or donated to some NPC faction for reputation or some other resource.

The age of the WoW clone seems to mostly be over, so I'd love to see the devs stay far away from generic WoW mechanics whenever possible.
 

MrDDT

Active Member
I love how people jump to "Clone xyz" soon as any feature copies it.

The age of the WoW clone seems to mostly be over, so I'd love to see the devs stay far away from generic WoW mechanics whenever possible.
 

Sarsberry

New Member
I love how people jump to "Clone xyz" soon as any feature copies it.
Well, to be fair, a lot of modern mmorpgs have done way more than copy a feature or two from WoW to gain that title. And I by no means am suggesting that Embers Adrift is even remotely close to WoW. I'm saying that they should make extra effort to avoid features that WoW popularized (well, for the most part).
 

MrDDT

Active Member
Well, to be fair, a lot of modern mmorpgs have done way more than copy a feature or two from WoW to gain that title. And I by no means am suggesting that Embers Adrift is even remotely close to WoW. I'm saying that they should make extra effort to avoid features that WoW popularized (well, for the most part).
I think each feature should be looked at on it's own and not "If this is in WOW it will be cloning WOW".

I think BOE and even BOP are good systems, doesn't make for a WOW clone.
Why are these good systems because they do what they are meant to do, allow drops to be important, allow crafted gear to be important. Without a system like BOP/BOE you end up having an econ that is broken and people giving away items for cheaps. So lower level gear is pretty much free to new people, where they will lose out on the exp of gaining those items themselves.

Now if you can come up with a system that is doing this task also, I likely will say that's a good or even better system. But a system is needed. The "clone" effect is the lessor of the 2 evils to me than having a bad econ and poor new player experience.
 

Sarsberry

New Member
I understand what you're saying, but I respectfully disagree.

Did WoW have a good economy? Did it have much of an economy at all? Your money came from non-repeatable quests for the most part and the good items were all Bind on Pickup and couldn't be traded at all. You spent your money on NPC trainers and mounts.

I had way more fun interacting with the economy in Everquest, which had limited "no drop" items, but no Bind on Equip that I remember.

I know not everyone shares my opinion, but I believe WoW (despite how fun it was early on) killed the mmorpg genre. I'd love to see a return to immersive, social worlds with as few of these sterile "quick fix" WoW mechanics as possible.
 

Aetrion

Active Member
I think it would be fine to have an item binding mechanic that was tied to upgrading/customizing items. Like creating an item with a custom fit that has some advantage, but can no longer be traded, or items that are somehow visually customized but then belong distinctly to that character.

What I absolutely do not want is some kind of durability system where items are guaranteed to be permanently destroyed at some point, because that creates a treadmill that makes the game feel pointless to me, and anything that is hard to obtain simply becomes the domain of the people with the most free time, since it has to be obtained again and again, rather than something you can work toward at your own pace.

My favorite kind of system for getting lots of old items out of circulation are systems where you can upgrade items by using other items. Like, you could upgrade a low level item all the way to a higher level item by successively fusing higher level equipment into it until you've gone through the whole progression of recovering items, but you've used them to upgrade something old rather than constantly swapping things out. That would allow the game to introduce unique items early because they could be upgraded to stay relevant. It's a lot less dead content when you can find something that can be upgraded all the way into a viable endgame item right away.
 

MrDDT

Active Member
Did WoW have a good economy? Did it have much of an economy at all? Your money came from non-repeatable quests for the most part and the good items were all Bind on Pickup and couldn't be traded at all. You spent your money on NPC trainers and mounts.

Yes it did. I'm not sure by what measure you say an economy is good or not, but I say if it has 1000s if not 100 of 1000s of transactions a day, its a good economy. How was it the best, heck no. But it was highly used and useful.
Also most money was not quests, they are mostly gained through looting kills. The quests were only good while leveling.

I do think a lot of money went to rare things like that (mounts) however, you had all sorts of things that money was spent on, like food, mats, items for alts and transmog stuff.


Can you tell me what you measure a "good" economy to if not one that is highly used?
 

Sarsberry

New Member
Can you tell me what you measure a "good" economy to if not one that is highly used?
Well, first of all, I can't speak to what WoW became after Lich King, because I stopped playing.

I'll concede that the WoW auction house had a large number of transactions, sure, but it's flooded with bland stuff like stacks of linen cloth and dirt cheap green items. A person who played the WoW economy well, and made a lot of gold, had very little they could do with it. Maybe they had a cool mount or something, but, as I said, the vast majority of good loot was bind on pickup (and not part of the economy at all).

There were a few gimmicky rare drops that were notable, but it's nothing like Everquest or Final Fantasy XI where you had hundreds of pieces of gear that had intrinsic value, and felt like tangible goods that you could trade. I really dislike the idea that because I swung some sword once, it's value is now literally zero.

Listen, I agree with the idea that there should be systems to help remove items and currency from the economy on a regular basis, but I don't think that the WoW system is the best way to handle it. Judging by your other posts on this forum, you seem to be advocating for Embers Adrift to become more like modern mmorpgs with all their conveniences and "quality of life" features. I've slipped down that slope before, and I don't like where it goes, so we'll have to agree to disagree here.
 

MrDDT

Active Member
I've seen both systems, ones with BOE/BOP and ones where you can trade all the items unlimited times. Always the unlimited trade item games have bad economy, or they are modeled in a completely different system like where items break after a short while and you replace them over and over.

I think having an item BOE is great, you can go get an item, if you don't want it, you can trade it/sell it. People can use it but once they use it, its bound to them. This works for economy great.
Also saying something has "zero value" can also be fixed with it being able to be broken down or sold to vendors.
 

Sarsberry

New Member
Also saying something has "zero value" can also be fixed with it being able to be broken down or sold to vendors.
Okay, maybe I should have said "little value" instead of "zero value" but my point still stands. I don't think it's a very satisfying system, and to be honest, I'd rather have an unbalanced economy than the sterile, almost non-existent item economy of WoW (for all the points I've listed above).

I think the best answer for the game may be somewhere in between (Aetrion mentioned "custom fitting" that could bind an item). I hesitate to make specific suggestions, myself, without input from the developers. I know the Pantheon devs are largely against items being BoE. Given that Embers is a game striving toward the same old school mmo design principles, I'd be curious to know their opinions, and I definitely don't intend to undermine their vision.
 

Dcellio

Member
Good discussion. I think it’s important for the game economy to allow items to be traded as much as possible. I think it is enough to place level restrictions and limited bank space on items in order to discourage hoarding too many items for alts. I also think repairing items should cost materials rather than money but we should be able to deconstruct items for those materials to offset that. I think vendors should sell repair materials at a premium as well, making it worthwhile to deconstruct if your profession allows. Maybe you could also get better ember flux out of rare/unique dropped items as well.
 

RazorBrains

Active Member
I am not against a system with durability loss. Something like every time you repair an item, the maximum durability lowers a bit. This still allows trade, but removes items from the game. It also makes item with high usage on them worth less due to the durability loss.

I think an alternate system is to have a maximum amount of repair value. Example say an item can be repaired 1% to 100%, representing 1 to 100. An item could have 10000 repair value, after that reaches 0 it can not be repaired again. With this system you could hide the exact value and put in place names to represent the value range, like broken = 0, brittle 1-300, worn 300-1000, good condition, very good, excellent, pristine = 10000.
 

Aetrion

Active Member
Systems where your items eventually can't be repaired are awful. It's just straight up not respecting the player's time to expect them to do the same thing over and over. Repetition is not content.

The idea that a game can last forever if you somehow create an eternal balance of acquisition and consumption is vain and foolish. No game lasts forever. Making the time people spend with your game less fun in an attempt to convince them that it will is one of the biggest reasons we're seeing for genre fatigue.

I get it, it's human nature to be drawn to products that promise infinite value. But the fact that it's impossible to actually deliver a forever-game has brought us to a point in the industry where every game promises that it will keep people entertained forever, no game ever keeps that promise. People go from game to game because they are disappointed and angry, always lured by another false promise that will lead to more disappointment and anger.

The gaming scene used to be much healthier when people stopped playing games because they finished them, were satisfied with the experience, and then looked for another good experience. Every game you enjoyed became a treasured memory, not a list of reasons why you quit anyways.
 
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Xeen

Member
I think it would be fine to have an item binding mechanic that was tied to upgrading/customizing items. Like creating an item with a custom fit that has some advantage, but can no longer be traded, or items that are somehow visually customized but then belong distinctly to that character.

What I absolutely do not want is some kind of durability system where items are guaranteed to be permanently destroyed at some point, because that creates a treadmill that makes the game feel pointless to me, and anything that is hard to obtain simply becomes the domain of the people with the most free time, since it has to be obtained again and again, rather than something you can work toward at your own pace.

My favorite kind of system for getting lots of old items out of circulation are systems where you can upgrade items by using other items. Like, you could upgrade a low level item all the way to a higher level item by successively fusing higher level equipment into it until you've gone through the whole progression of recovering items, but you've used them to upgrade something old rather than constantly swapping things out. That would allow the game to introduce unique items early because they could be upgraded to stay relevant. It's a lot less dead content when you can find something that can be upgraded all the way into a viable endgame item right away.
I said something of the same as well:

I like the idea that you could personalize and upgrade or otherwise enhance an item, then it becomes character/account bound/BoE/otherwise removed from circulation OR you can leave it at base stats and it remains tradeable (even if it was equipped). How will such an upgrade system be governed and executed though? Would a skilled crafter be required to perform the upgrade, then how would the item be traded?

Loot is so scarce in this game (the good stuff, mostly because of the rareness of a lot of named mobs, if you even manage to find one paired with chance at one of several or NO items in the case of semi-rare mobs), so having a BoP system is something I am absolutely against as the scenario is often this: Find a rare spawn, hunt it, get loot, not what you want/for your character etc, trade said rare for other equally valuable rare that you do want (assuming you solo'd the mob or it was a party effort and you won a greed roll, no 'needs'). So I'm cool with maybe some sort of agreeable BoE system. This allows items to be traded around a bit, but not indefinitely.

They aren't going to do a gear-loss system. Undone said so many times on discord. Idk why tools can be broken, doesn't make much sense or add an ounce to the desirability of a provisioner. Provis is all about food/tea and pots! Those are high turnover items.

Atlantica and other games had a system where you could combine 2 of an item at a given enhance tier to reach the next tier. This would soak tons of items out of circulation and give them purpose aside from just being pawned to a non-existent npc through a merchant table. That's another great way to sink items out of the economy. A +1 requires 2 items, +2 then requires 4, +3 8, and so on. Eventually you would require additional enhancement resources and/or chance for failure or even item loss would become a possibility.
 

RazorBrains

Active Member
Well having lots of different items with multiple random traits on it like UO/Diablo, and combine that with a disenchant system that returns something of value back to the person, will have people volunteering to remove it from circulation every time they try a new build. I do like random loot traits on items versus static traits, its more fun to see drops.

The problem thou, is very high value items wont get removed unless people quit with the item in possession.
 

Aetrion

Active Member
When you do random loot people are going to figure out what the god rolls are and what the best possible stat combinations for any given build are. They aren't going to disenchant items that meet those criteria, they are just going to disenchant all the random trash they find along the way.

I don't think there is a problem with high value items sticking around as long as there is some kind of mechanic to bind them to a character to get their full power. Once someone has put the work in to get an item there is no valid reason to take it away from them. Making them get it over again isn't content, it's just a pointless treadmill.

The really big issue with infinitely tradeable items is that if you can always resell them later you eventually wind up with a glut of low level high quality items that get passed from character to character. Another way to prevent that is to allow higher level items to be used as a resource to upgrade lower level items of equal quality to that level, that way every rare item in the game, even the low level ones are potentially useful to high end builds.