Pirates of the Burning Sea Economy

I've just spent half an hour reading up on Pirates of the Burning Sea's economy. It sounds like they're going to produce something very close to my Holy Grail of MMOs, an EVE-like economy. Well, my ideal is an EVE-like fantasy economy, but this is close enough to please me, and if PotBC takes off, we're likely to see more games on this model.

Trinity, on female-gamer.com, has a long discussion about the possibilities of the player-driven economy, based on a post by Isildur on the Pirates of the Burning Sea site.

Tobold doesn't agree that such an economy will work, but I'm pretty sure Tobold has never played EVE, where just such an economy is in full working swing.

And then there's a fantastic post by one of the PotBS developers about the invisible price auction model they're going to be using.

From barely knowing the game existed to definite enthusiasm in half an hour; that has to be a record!

Posted by Drew Shiel at September 16, 2007 8:28 PM

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

I played EVE for only 2 weeks. But there are some significant differences between EVE and PotBS economy:

A) Production in EVE is based on you being online, mining asteroids. Production in PotBS is offline, you set up a structure and wait.

B) EVE has buy orders, PotBS hasn't. Thus in EVE you can sell your goods immediately, as long as you find a corresponding buy order. In PotBS you just put your goods on the most promising sounding auction houses and wait.

What is common between EVE and PotBS is that goods have to be transported. Although the exact rules between the two games differ, in both games transporting can take quite a long time in which nothing happens, unless you are attacked by pirates.

Thus my doubts about the PotBS system are whether there isn't too much waiting involved, and too little doing. You set up a production, wait for the goods to be produced, transport them possibly over a long distance while nothing happens, put them up for auction and wait until they are sold. Does that sound exciting to you?

Posted by: Tobold at September 17, 2007 12:35 PM

Sorry, Tobold, commented on your own post before I saw this. To address your points, though:

A) Mineral Production in EVE is certainly online, but that's not what I do in EVE - I buy my minerals, and rely on my manufacturing skills to make it economic to produce goods for my corporation. Mining is not production; they're two entirely different specialisations.

B) PotBS has indeed got buy orders. From Isildur's post: "As a producer in a port, you can offer goods out of your warehouse for sale at whatever price you like per unit, or place a buy order to purchase an item at whatever price you’re willing to pay per unit."

Transportation is also a valid profession; I contract it out in EVE, and am likely to do the same by whatever means I can in PotBS.

And not to be awkward, but that economic process you're describing - yes, it does sound exciting. I love game economics, and being able to make things in game, and having a big, complex economy to play with is a great thing. And you can always run missions while you're waiting; it doesn't look to me like the degree of specialisation needed requires not doing anything else.

Posted by: Drew Shiel at September 17, 2007 4:59 PM