Research Opportunities and In-Game Metrics



  • money could just be rare resources like gold or something that you would need anyway for end game tech stuff .. like .. computers need gold .. gold could be a basic player money, but players should still have possibility to trade wood for food



  • Eh, Gold is shiny, look into history and you'll find that is the number one reason it was utilized as currency backer. It helps that it is rare and hard to reproduce thus controlling the actual item had strategic value. But again, we put that value there solely based on greed for gold.

    I agree about the conductive properties being used in tech advancement thou, but when the idea of a currency system first came about that wasn't at their forethought. For example, what would the world have been like had gold not been as rare as it is?



  • Like @cr4zyc4t said, money is just something that you attribute value to. I think the current idea (no fixed money) is the best one:

    • It's not forcing a community to use money. What if I'm in a no-government system where money has no value? Or what if I'm in a dictatorship where I have to follow orders/give up stuff? There's so many different scenarios where money just plays no role.
    • It allows a community to create their own currency if they want to (I'll make a mod for "coins" and stuff later on, I think). But this could be whatever is rare: Maybe the planet is rich on gold, but has little iron? Maybe the currency is fur and there's a strict hunting law?

    Gold wasn't always used as currency, silver was used prior to gold I think. But gold has a few unique attributes that certainly helped:

    • It doesn't react with other things: It doesn't tarnish.
    • It has a low smelting point and is quite soft, making it easy to work with it.
    • It's rare, but not extremely so. I think it's easy to get to (close to the surface), but I'm not sure of that.
    • It is quite heavy, making it hard to fake (because the weight would be a dead giveaway)

    So it's more because of its chemical attributes than any other magic property. Nowadays, gold has lost most of its relevance in favour of special paper and coins - because those can now be finer controlled.



  • i think the way to solve this is basically to add silver gold copper and so on .. you can refine silver into ingots but you also can divide an ingot into like 1000 nuggets .. people can just use that as a currency , this again would the require to balance how those resources are needed to craft other thing. this would be a middle thing .. give player a tool to have currency without mods .. and it would be easy to implement.



  • We'll have gold in the world, and it will meet the requirements as people point out to become the standard currency. Eventually a government in the game could release a fiat currency, that it then has control of and can print more, and you can get banks and all kinds of crazy stuff. Looking forward to our first financial crisis in Eco due to player greed.

    Or maybe it will be bottle of Tide that become the currency: http://nymag.com/news/features/tide-detergent-drugs-2013-1/



  • Sounds good about currency!

    I just had the thought that, if we're able to get different biomes, that it would be interesting to see if and how groups adapt their social, political, and economic institutions to fit with the biome and the environment (if that's something they choose to do).

    Out of curiosity, what happens if a civilization, group of people, society, or the whole world crashes in terms of environmental degradation? Is there going to be a reset and reclaim thing? Will everyone have to start again from the bottom level and work their way back up? Or will the environment correct itself over time and allow societies to continue to operate and essentially cope with the ecological devastation? Just something to think about.



  • I expect food to be a defacto currency early game. Livestock was often used used for significant purchases in the past, I believe.



  • Path of Exile has a really good solution to both the opt-in research and the currency.

    Opt-in fresh world competitions where players agree to sit a test and be studied. I can't imagine it being a good move to subject paying gamers to studies without an option otherwise.

    Consumable random rewards as currency works really well in Path of Exile too.

    The randomness means that it has an economically independent value like gold but it also has a natural deflation behaviour - if people get too many of them, they will burn through them trying to get a specific outcome from the random reward.
    (Usually you end up stock piling them to get a 6-link but hey, I had "too many" when I burnt 300 fusing orbs that time.)

    The kind of thing they affect creates a natural hierarchy of denominations as well.
    Exchange rates: http://www.poeex.info/

    It seems like there'd be lots of good options for consumables in Eco.



  • We're planning to allow servers to keep running after a world pollutes itself to food-death, until everyone starves basically. Post apocalypse worlds will be interesting.

    Yep food will likely be a currency, since everyone will need it, and it will have some commodity properties (something that takes a long time to rot most likely).

    Havent played path of exile, sounds interesting.



  • <blockquote>We're planning to allow servers to keep running after a world pollutes itself to food-death, until everyone starves basically. Post apocalypse worlds will be interesting.</blockquote>

    Well, either we all starve or the meteor hits :D



  • Although I'm not an economist by profession the subject fascinates me and I saw the research potential of this game almost at once. I'm so glad others who are actually in the industry have already taken notice and will be gleaning information from the chaos. I don't know if I'd be of any help, but certently I'll love to see what ever is found.



  • Now that you've said that, it's gonna be super hard not to try to push the first few worlds towards fallout :D

    Let the alpha begin!



  • @killerfurby33 said:

    Environmental Science:
    Unfortunately, I don't have the expertise on environmental science to know what is relevant and necessary for human survival beyond the need to clean up and dispose of certain waste products and not to deplete or excessively exploit certain raw material sources. I would try to consult biologists and environmental scientists who specialize in the intersection of human activity and the environment to develop the metrics and possible studies here.

    I wont lie I have little knowledge/interest in the other things you mentioned. However, I am fairly interested in the environment, in multiple aspects (as I should be as I'm spending way to much money for a degree so I can work full time instead of summers only).

    ->Relevant/necessary for human survival
    Food. Water. Shelter.

    In a more primal sense, what else do we really need? Food/Water are pretty obvious. Shelter being anything from a house or cave to clothing. Computers, cars, even electricity aren't really truly necessary other than we've lived with them for long enough most people can't go without it.

    ->Clean up and disposal of certain waste products
    Pretty much anything we do should be cleaned up. I can't really think of any harmless waste we produce. Even bodily functions are now concentrated so much and mixed with who knows what else that you have something very toxic in the end.

    ->Deplete/excessive exploitation of "certain" raw material sources.
    Sorry I take the keyword here as certain, but realistically any excessive exploitation causes issues. There's only so much mother nature can counteract.

    I know I didn't speak towards the game and what could be analyzed as far as it goes, but being that I haven't played it; it becomes more difficult to directly correlate. Personally, I'm probably going to do anything and everything I can to wreck the environment in game, just to see if it reacts as expected or if something weird-er happens.

    But back to the real topic. What I'd be interested in seeing more on (and tying back to those three points I took out):
    -Species and extinction caused by our interactions (either through over-hunting; specific targeting [i.e. livestock protection]; or just what we do to the environment)
    -Recovery of species (can we undo and help a population back to its feet)
    -Deforestation and its effects, at that same time how much does our pollution increase due to every player murdering all the trees they can find.
    -Mines - really produce multiple levels of pollution when its active its not so much the mine itself but the smelting process that destroys life, after its abandoned improperly you end up with acid mine drainage; water flows through dissolving various substances, direct effect being dropping the pH to more acidic levels (sometimes into the negatives), not much can grow in that but some plants can tolerate a fairly low pH.

    To bring people back into it: What do they do to avoid, counter, or mitigate these effects? Which has the "best" outcome? Was there resistance to the restoration projects or did everyone unite to bring it about?

    In my mind, its all limited by the software. Does it account for and react as it is known (or suspected) to in real life? Server size/composition - a group of friends on a 10 person server may be fairly similar in their want to keep x around so the spend all their resources to accomplish that goal; a server of 100 people none of them knowing each other there's bound to be resistance. And from a science standpoint, 100 "random" people make a far better study than 10 hand-picked.

    Just my thoughts. Should probably go back to trying to sleep again.....



  • Good morning. Sorry it's been so long, I've been busy with other stuff in the "real" world. @bacon, thank you for fleshing out the environmental aspects. Yes, I agree, having some metrics of resources and waste/pollution would be excellent to capture in the game. I'm also thinking about tracking trade transactions, building construction, wealth distribution (in terms of currency and material goods), a method to track the laws that the society comes up with as well as a way to watch how these laws are created (this latter part is going to be trickier to see in game) as well as those environmental factors that you mentioned. I can see a series of datasets being formed from each experimental server that can easily be merged together into one or more datasets. @JohnK, I haven't had a chance to look at the code, nor can I really read the code. Out of curiosity, have the metrics been included in at least some of the alphas? An update on the metrics would be helpful, since I've been away for so long.

    Hope everything and everyone is well!



  • Yep the stats and law system is working and will be available wiith alpha tomorrow! Its still in its infancy so lots more to come, but the foundational features are there. Looking forward to hearing your feedback.



  • I would like to see the barter pairing system to start but after awhile (maybe after alpha and beta)I would like to see a way to pair Bitcoin(BTC) or another crypto currency with an ECO mindset paired with this game. Maybe Teslacoin(TES).



  • That would be awesome and is a 5-year-plan I have for video games, build an exchange like that.



  • @JohnK, excellent! How can I access the data once the game gets up and running?


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