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Money Sink Ideas
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Jesse Hunter
Jesse Hunter
Santa's Little Helper

Dec-6-2007 17:08

It has been brought up before that without ways to remove cash from circulation any game economy is in long term trouble. Sleuth currently has at least five such money sinks available to all subscribed players:
Travel Costs
Bribes
Detective/Faction Shops
Real Estate
Shady Character

Travel and Bribes function well. Shops incur mostly one time expenses from low to mid experience characters. Real Estate (with the exception of Agency Rent) incurs a one time expense from mid to high experience characters. Shady really seems to be the biggest money sink of the game, and is really the reason for this thread. Having said that...

THIS IS NOT A THREAD ABOUT ALTERING THE SHADY SYSTEM!
(see "Beating a Dead Horse" if that's your thing, there are also other threads for non-money related ideas)

It's just that the money sink function of Shady is a big justification for keeping the current system. If we can come up with some new money sinks, maybe we can make some progress on that other front.

I'm looking for ideas that won't significantly change gameplay or create unbalance in the game. Ideas that appeal to all high experience detectives (not just the ones with FAs) and agencies are best, cause that's where the money is.

Replies

Sleuth Admin
Sleuth Admin
Tale Spinner

Dec-8-2007 11:08

Alright, I guess I'm on-board with the contact blow-off payment But what would be a fair price?



Jojo
Jojo
Old Shoe

Dec-8-2007 11:27

$100,000 to $250,000 sounds good to me.

Jesse Hunter
Jesse Hunter
Santa's Little Helper

Dec-8-2007 11:34

Not to make things more complicated than they need to be, I was thinking it should be a function of your number of cases solved. Something that puts newer folks in the $50,000 range and old hands in the $500,000 range.

Jojo
Jojo
Old Shoe

Dec-8-2007 11:40

But I'm not sure "newer folks" would need nor want to change their contacts. It'd only be the older ones that would be participating.

And if it were to be on a scale, it should be done by experience, not number of cases solved.

lilangel
lilangel
Sleuth About Town

Dec-8-2007 11:52

Are you suggesting the price be similar to that of Shady? If so, then I think some might complain about the prices of paying $1 million or so. Maybe at a lower rate than Shady's but still increasing the longer you have them as a contact?

Jesse Hunter
Jesse Hunter
Santa's Little Helper

Dec-8-2007 11:59

I don't just mean fresh off the boat newbies. With nearly 400 cases, 170,000 experience and nearly a month in, I still consider myself on the green end of the sleuth scale.

When I joined an agency in the first ten days, I got lucky that the two contacts I had already gained didn't conflict with the agency's needs. For some folks, though, they do. I would say that many undesirable contacts are picked up near the beginning of a career, as it might not occur to a new sleuth to quit a case to avoid a bad contact. The Game Hunger is strong in the early days.

As for what the scale is based on, meh...
I went with cases solved because of real world thinking, contact's helps on all cases, regardless of experience gained. Really I'm cool with whatever is easiest to code without resulting in the same complaints we currently have with paying off FAs.

Breitkat
Breitkat
Pinball Amateur

Dec-8-2007 14:48

I'm NOT in favor of the experience or number of cases solved arguement. Both would inevitably lead to the same deal people look at with Shady, and I'm not willing to spend $2 million and up just to change a contact. It'd be easier to just retire and redo them all over again. A set price sounds fair to me, one that's not especially low, but not exorbitantly high either. Jojo's price seems fair, possibly up to $500,000.

Breitkat
Breitkat
Pinball Amateur

Dec-8-2007 14:59

Also, Jesse, I think a bit of your numbers are off about the number of active sleuths. I believe the majority of active people here are unsubbed, and cannot be in an agency. And there have been upwards of 150 agencies on the roster at various times. Agencies are created and ended every day. There are also many, many people who log on to sleuth intermittenly, but would be considered regular players. It's difficult to determine exactly how many there are based on just one day's calculations.

Jesse Hunter
Jesse Hunter
Santa's Little Helper

Dec-8-2007 15:37

I realize that, but I don't have access to detailed accounts of sleuth activity. I do know that the numbers haven't changed much in the last week that I've been keeping track (one less agency, very small fluctuation in # of active accounts). My main point was that although everyone who plays earns cash to some degree, far from everyone puts significant amounts into the agency system, whether because they can't (unsubbed) or they just don't want to. It would be nice to have some other ways of participating in the economy. Exact details are neither here nor there.

As for paying on a scale, it depends on the formula used. This one seems fair to me.

Cases.....Cash
50..........$22,366
75...........$27,396
150........$38,759
300........$54,854
600........$77,692
1200......$110,200
2400......$156,767
4800......$224,286
9600......$324,370
23360....$536,814

Work 16 cases a day for ~four years and you still only pay half a mil, but it's not so cheap that anyone at any level should make the decision lightly. It is biased a toward extremely new detectives (who has that much at 50 cases?) but as Jojo says, they probably have less desire to switch. It balances out toward the middle (I could swing that much but it wouldn't be easy) and never gets truly outrageous like Shady's prices.

That formula, btw, is
=(SQRT(Cases+100,000))*SQRT(Cases)*10

R Anstett
R Anstett

Dec-8-2007 16:32

One problem with setting a cash value on losing/changing a contact is that we can lose/change our contacts now by retiring.

If I want to change all contacts, I simply pay shady after coming back from retirement and I can acquire all new contacts. So there has to be a premium on the ability to pick and choose which contact you lose.

Rather than total cases I would suggest that the payment to lose One contact would be based on how many cases that contact has done work for you.

One view could be that younger detectives could change easier because there is not the relationship built up, but older detectives who have been working with the Barber forever would pay a steeper price.

The alternative view is that older detectives could lose the contact easier because that person is sick of being used so much.

Not sure which I favor, but I do think that the cost should be substantial, almost if not quite Shady like.

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