My Application for Game Director

  • #22
    I think you make an excellent point about trading. I will be honest I was the ignorant poster in the first few months and said "The AH is the same thing as trading". IT IS NOT. It took me a few months to learn this but I did and strongly believe that Blizzard needs to encourage trading more.

    The Auction House is handy for getting a gem really quick, searching for a possible upgrade, and selling something quickly. The problem with the AH is that is inflating the economy too much. It dictates too much what I'm going to pay for an item. This system works for MMO's like WoW because trading is not an important part of the experience. Everything is BoA/BoE minus a few items. In WoW you use the AH to trade gems, recipes, crafting mats, enchanting mats, etc. But none of your end game gear will come from trading. In Diablo trading is how you gear up. We don't raid, do Arena for rating etc.

    With that being said the whole experience from 1-60 can change from an increased emphasis on trading. Lately I have been leveling my low level characters up to 60 and working on getting them through Inferno. Taking a nice break from the Paragon/Gear grind. Monster Power has made this experience amazing. Going to the AH, dropping 500k on some really good leveling gear, cranking the MP up to 6-8 and just having a blast playing through the acts. However, this gear takes FOREVER to resell. People just are not leveling characters. My point is .. you can make a name for yourself trading low lvl sets. You just don't see things like "Selling Hell MP7 Monk Set", "Trading DH Nightmare MP10 Set for Wizard".

    You could also see things like that at end game, "Trading MP7 Wizard Set for Monk MP7". Or you could do "Trading MP9 Barb Set for MP4 Monk set + gold". There is so much possibility in an increase in trading. More social interaction is a primary reason, and a unique offer the Auction House cannot provide. Last night I saw a weapon I would have loved to buy for my Wizard - it was really greatly itemized, no it wasn't the best weapon I could get, but it was exactly what I was looking for. The problem was it was 5m which was overpriced. I would paid 2-2.5m because that's what it was worth. I could not message this guy because the name is not displayed. I am willing to bet his item is like many of my items, I put them up for 6m and they just sit, then 5m, and they just sit. If someone messaged me and said I'll give you 2.25m. I'll bite. This doesn't happen though. I am sure this person would have taken what I was willing to pay. The only items people advertise in trade are the 100m super items.

    Look, I have no solution to this problem, I just know what the problem is. If emphasis can be moved away from the AH in terms of trading it could bring a lot of new ways to trade and obtain items in ways the AH cannot offer. This somehow needs to be created. After I drop that 500k on my leveling set I usually just vendor it because it takes forever to sell. If a person wants to switch from DH to Wizard they will take a week or so to sell off all of their gear and repurchase it. Because gold dictates item value so much right now it may be more expensive to gear on character than another and a person could be penalized for wanting to switch classes and be able to still do MP 7.
  • #23
    Very interesting read. Thanks for taking the time to post up your thoughts.

    I've tried trading in game and it is extremely hard. The trade channel is normally filled with scammers or people that will just waste your time. As people may remember in D2, there was sort of a set economy with trading. Gems/skulls for items or whatever you wanted. I understand D3 is a completely different game in that respect, but I miss that trading aspect that was in D2.

    Anyway, didn't really add much to the conversation but putting a trading system in D3 that actually works might be beneficial to the community.
  • #25
    Quote from wheunis

    1m items become 5m items.
    5m items become 15m items.
    15m items become 50m items.
    50m items become 200m items.

    You are looking at it completely wrong.

    If people will pay 5m for it and someone lists it at 1m that doesn't mean it's a "1m item" it means it's a "5m item on sale for 1m."

    If flippers destroy the economy as you suggest then WoW would have completely imploded after 8 years, because WoW has some serious item-flipping potential and many people have got very rich from buying and relisting mis-priced items.

    The bottom line is if an item is worth 5m and someone lists it at 1m, that's mislisted. Someone buying it and listing it closer to its actual value is not denying you anything. If you want to buy a 5m item but only want to pay 1m for it then the problem is with YOU and not the guy who is capitalizing on an economic opportunity.

    Also, the last line of your post is horribly unnecessary, hopefully the mods will explain why via infraction.
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  • #26
    OP, you make some interesting points about why do people play the game, and what makes Diablo. My personal preferences differ greatly though.

    Originally, I wanted a cool coop game that everyone could easily play together, regardless of time commitment: I knew that many old friends will get the game, and I just wanted a game where we can hang around, without the need of subscription and whatever. I knew that won't happen as soon as they announced online only and RMAH. These things need totally different balancing than solo/small group gaming, and as an MMO AH veteran, I knew that things will get ugly right from start. Unfortunately I was right, only 3 friends log in occasionally nowadays out of the ~30 I started playing with, and it's got nothing with the lack of socialization, we're a bunch of nerds who know each other from RL, we do that regardless. I just hoped that one game can bring us all together (and is not Minecraft ,) ).

    However, after realizing that the game will suck, I didn't give up on Diablo 3 totally:

    I thought about trying myself out in RMAH. That is not a diablesque challenge at all, but currently the only thing that makes me return to the game is getting money out of it. Because nothing says pwning better than having the money of the scrubs in your pocket. So I farmed, I sniped and I flipped. And I still do when patches are coming and people are trading more frequently.

    I still wish a different Diablo though. One that gives more power to the gamer to customize their experience. One that has more variation. Like, offline/lan/room games. Random map generation. Random monster ecosystems. Oh, and I hate that in 2013, in an AAA game, I still need to use external calculators/resources.

    This is the stuff I'd recommend to the new Game Director. Unreal I know. But Diablo needs radical changes in the long run.
  • #27
    I understand what you mean about not having any benchmarks. However because D3 is expected to have a lot of players and AH is the centre of gear progression, the chances of you yourself rolling all the correct affixes and THEN rolling the correct range of values is extremely unforgiving, to the point which it is easy to be demotivated. They have since added legendaries which act a bit like D2 crafted oranged...This has been great for you and me, I've found many upgrades for myself through 1.0.4, but has made the AH even more homogeneous.

    Vertical progression, in terms of character power, is always going to be tied towards the AH economy, but how can we encourage players to progress horizontally - try new builds, have alternative gear sets tailored to those builds, etc...and no we aren't talking about things like Enigma which changes the entire flow of gameplay, we are talking more on the power level of say the Dream runeword - not overpowered but nevertheless interesting.

    You really hit the nail on the head on wanting to message the creator of the auction. The linear, min-bid/BO in 1d12h structure of the AH does not lend itself to flexibility. When I create auctions, I would have loved people to message me to make an offer. Right now if you don't care you can just list for minimum and hope your item gets noticed, or you can set what you think is a reasonable minimum only to relist it every 2 days.

    Being able to trade packages is like the EvE contracts system - only difference is that EvE has so many ship classes and methods of earning income that the economy is already very diversified. It is hard to encourage that level of trade until we stop players all wanting trifecta.

    I agree there is a degree of fun to be had making a bottom line and flipping items in both auction houses. However with practice (and the windows clock), it becomes an almost mechanical process. And as you already pointed's not really playing do it only for that bottom line....your character is irrelevant in this activity :
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  • #28
    Taking out the AH is not something I can get behind. You can go back to spamming in /trade but I'm not joining you.
  • #29
    Quote from MarshBoxer

    Vertical progression, in terms of character power, is always going to be tied towards the AH economy, but how can we encourage players to progress horizontally - try new builds, have alternative gear sets tailored to those builds, etc...and no we aren't talking about things like Enigma which changes the entire flow of gameplay, we are talking more on the power level of say the Dream runeword - not overpowered but nevertheless interesting.

    Even within the very limited build variety of the wizard class, I found some horizontal progress recently. By trying out a new build that *needs* different gear (less IAS, more APoC, less crit chance, more EHP, and so on) you need to change some significant pieces of gear, and after all that impacts your entire gear composition.

    What was "finding a new piece of gear" in D2 (like Enigma) and "building a new character around it" (i.e., leveling a new character because skills and stats were fixed), has now become "find a new and interesting build" and "acquiring the gear for it". Yes, all of this can be done with the help of the AH and therefore, if you have the money, within minutes rather than a few days of leveling your new toon up. However, if some BoA items are essentially for your new build, you'll take the AH out of the equation. It's just a matter of solving the same problem in different ways. I can understand that some people always come back to the way everything was done in D2, but I also appreciate that Blizzard doesn't take the easy way out and actually *tries* to do something new. Whether they succeed or fail remains to be seen; any Diablo game showed its real value after some years, not 3 weeks *before* a new patch hits. You can't evaluate something that hasn't even happened yet.
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