[MUD-Dev] DESIGN: Active and Inactive currency

John Buehler johnbue at msn.com
Mon Apr 26 14:31:26 CEST 2004

Rayzam writes:
> From: "Alistair Milne" <krug at krug.org.uk>

>> Money does eventually pool at the crafts-people, granted, but the
>> money only stays with them if their product is in constant
>> demand, enough that they can make as much of it as they like and
>> it keeps on flying off the shelves like hot cakes, or indeed like
>> hot cookies.

>> If that's the case then more competitors will come along to fill
>> the extra need until market saturation is met.  And then at that
>> point, it only takes one rogue crafts-person to break the cartel
>> and sell their product just a little cheaper and then the whole
>> house of cards tumbles and they're suddenly all into negative
>> profit and going out of business faster than a five year old can
>> eat raw cookie dough.

>> Why would someone do that, break the cartel?  Because even though
>> they reduce their margins a little, they still get more overall
>> profit for a while because they get more customers looking for a
>> bargin.  Everyone's always looking for a fast buck...

> So wouldn't the crafters switch to a different product? If someone
> is truly into making monkey, then they won't really care about
> whether they make money by baking cookies or bread, or making
> gyros or burritos. Most crafting systems don't tie the crafter
> down into such a small manufacturing niche, for the simple reason
> that if the example above occurs, you lose players. Idle crafters
> will leave. Crafters who can't make any needed products will
> leave.

I wonder if a distinction should be made between "crafter" and
"businessman".  In the game world, I'm a crafter.  I like to make
stuff and to see people use it.  I couldn't care less if I made
money from it.  If I was working for a business that let me craft an
interesting item that people used and I made a nominal salary, I'd
be a happy camper.  I think that a lot of "crafters" feel that same

Then there's the other camp of people who don't really care about
the process of making stuff.  They're interested in making money.
The crafting stuff is just a means to an end.  Those are the

Crafters are more "casual".  Businessmen are more "hardcore".

Naturally, there is a complete spectrum of interest between being a
pure crafter and being a pure businessman.  But to discuss this with
only one type of player in mind seems problematical.

I've been assuming that we've been talking about businessmen.  They
are the ones who care about margins, efficiency, equipment costs and
so on.  They're the risk-takers that I've talked about.  They're the
ones who won't hang onto and pool their money.

As a crafter, my only interest in money is usually that I HAVE to
worry about the stuff so that I can make stuff that people will use.
Games seem to happily intermingle business and crafting.

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