Proposal to remove uber/banned gear from the economy

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Proposal to remove uber/banned gear from the economy

Post by Psyco » Tue Apr 05, 2005 4:25 pm

One issue facing CoPaP is the amount of items in existance that is on the uber/banned list. This has come up as an issue almost every time a new low magic world wants to join, or whenever someone raises the issue of low magic. The main problem I see with this gear is not that it exists, but that it never leaves. When people stop playing they tend to pass this type of equipment down and it therefore stays in the economy.

What would happen if we had a one time offer to make copap banned/uber gear plot and undropable for all players?

Just to be clear, the items I am talking about are the ones with any of these properties
Immune knockdown
Immune mind affecting
Immune spell school
Immune specific spell
Immune spell by level
Immune Critical Hit
Immune Sneak Attack
Immune Death Magic
Some of the On Hit effects (dispels, vorpal and the slays in particular)
Cast Spell of a spell level higher than 4
Damage Resistance of greater than 15
Improved Evasion
True Seeing
+5 item or equivalent
Haste
Spell sequencers


Workload
Items can be tagged as plot/undropable on the fly by DMs via the DMFI wand. So there would be no coder or builder time taken, it would have an effect on DMs, there is not enough of this stuff out there to make it a really major hit, and even if it was a major hit, it would only be for a short time. The workload on CoPaP teams is IMO not a prohibative issue.

bad side
In the short term, this would increase the have/have not situation currently in CoPaP as those with the gear would not lose it. But this is not too different to what we currently have anyway. There are very few options available for newer characters to get their hands on this stuff as it is (as it should be).

The characters that have this gear would have less to fear from death, all their best equipment would go with them.

There are characters out there that have this type of equipment that it is hard to justify how they got it. We would have to include them in the process as well, so we would be rewarding potentially iffy behavior by giving them plot items.

good points
In the longer term, there would be no way that this stuff could get passed down. As the characters that currently have it leave, we can gaurentee it leaves with them, eventually this would cause all of this equipment to leave CoPaP for good.

This would also help to stabalie the economy to some degree. The only items that are able to move around in the economy, and therefore the only items that can have any effect on it are those that are theoretically available to everyone, be it by drop or DM reward. This effect would be instant. As soon as items are marked in such a way they are removed from the economy instantly even if they are still in the game world.

Other
In essense what we would be doing would be creating a 2nd phase of 1%ers (2%ers?). But these ones would not be able to have the flow on influence to the economy that the current 1%ers have. The Avlis 1%ers had the trade in to remove items from the economy, this concept would also remove items from the economy, but with a longer time frame, and less direct effort.

If everyone has this option, then if these type of items are found on corpses, DMs can loot more freely without feeling guilty (I know some DMs or even worlds would not feel guilty already, but some would) to remove the items. It was the players choice to not have the item marked.

If these items do start to turn up again at a later date then it is clear they are not old stock, and will be much easier to spot exploits or other issues. eg. nobody is going to be given a greater belt of guiding light, if they were, then it would be a custom named item, and listed in the CoPaP DM rewards listing thread, and not the generic bioware palete item. If someone has earned a reward of that type, they have also earned a custom item.

While plot is a good property to have on an item, undropable really isn't. Undropable is esentially a curse, you cannot put the item in a bag, so you cannot reduce its weight, and it takes up a set amount of your inventory space. If you are uncumbered and have only undropable gear, you are going to stay that way.

One of the issues that came up when discussing this with others was merchant PCs. Currently there are a number of merchants that stock these types of item (zach featherfingers etc). This would kill the trade of these items (by design) and leave these merchants out of pocket. If however this idea was announced in advance, it would give these merchants a chance to offload the items for things that will still be allowed in the economy. This will have the effect of making the problem seem worse initially as all these items would be flushed out of peoples stockpiles, however in the long term this is also a good thing. If these items no longer stockpiled, then they will leave the economy quicker as you are not waiting for people in 1 or 2 generations time to leave with them.




This idea has both positive and negative sides, its a question of does the long term positive effect of getitng these items out of the economy for good outweigh the negative effect of making a select few characters more powerfull in the short term.

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Post by JollyOrc » Tue Apr 05, 2005 4:36 pm

two things:

a) I thought this kind of loot wasn't "never to be given out", but rather "given out with extreme prejudice and very carefully and seldom" ?

b) even as a World Leader for an extreme Low Magic world (heck, Catara even has an enforced quota of magic using PCs vs. non-casting PCs), I think the trouble isn't worth the results.

Effort should be concentrated on making sure not new or unmonitored items get out. Also, we might want to give players that retire characters with "uber" loot some incentive to NOT pass it down to someone else.

Give them the opportunity to get some perk that makes the next character extra nice, without having it overpowered. Require some extra effort in terms of background story too, to scare of powergamers.


Cursing items, or taking them away won't go down that nicely. Those who have just one set of boots of speed will go for it, but those who have several magic bags full won't. (for the reasons Psyco stated). And they WILL complain loudly if you take the items away if they die after that.

Come up with plots that require the sacrifice of big items, in order to achieve something extraordinary. That way people will get something out of the loss :)
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Post by Tristan_Durst » Tue Apr 05, 2005 5:34 pm

JollyOrc wrote:a) I thought this kind of loot wasn't "never to be given out", but rather "given out with extreme prejudice and very carefully and seldom”?


This is what I though as well until I was explained the process. Each CoPaP DM has the availability to give out 1 Banned item once per year. Personally, I think if this is the practice then it needs to be reflected in the Articles of Confederation. Currently they state the items are NOT to be given out at all.

JollyOrc wrote:Effort should be concentrated on making sure not new or unmonitored items get out. Also, we might want to give players that retire characters with "uber" loot some incentive to NOT pass it down to someone else.


I have been wondering about this on the more established servers as well. Learning now that PC merchants have gotten their hands on 1% items, I think something should be done. I agree with Psyco’s plan. It might be a pain in the arse, and it might not make IC/IG sense, but it will take care of a problem of 1% items from going into the masses hands, when these items are suppose to be reward items.

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Post by Psyco » Tue Apr 05, 2005 5:50 pm

JollyOrc wrote:a) I thought this kind of loot wasn't "never to be given out", but rather "given out with extreme prejudice and very carefully and seldom" ?


And this is partially where the issue has come from. Even if a very limited number of these items are given out in a given time period, if enough time passes, and the items stay around, there will eventually be enough for everyone to have them. That is the extreme, and i doubt we would ever get to that. But as I said, the issue is not that these items exist. The issue is that they accumulate. This does nothing to remove those already in existance, and it does nothing to stop more being given out at a later date. All it does is make sure that the items get removed from teh economy, and, at some point, get removed from CoPaP.

JollyOrc wrote:b) even as a World Leader for an extreme Low Magic world (heck, Catara even has an enforced quota of magic using PCs vs. non-casting PCs), I think the trouble isn't worth the results.

Effort should be concentrated on making sure not new or unmonitored items get out.


thats already happening. But that doesn't address the build up that already exists.

JollyOrc wrote:Also, we might want to give players that retire characters with "uber" loot some incentive to NOT pass it down to someone else.

Give them the opportunity to get some perk that makes the next character extra nice, without having it overpowered. Require some extra effort in terms of background story too, to scare of powergamers.



Its rare that someone retires a character like this just to create an alt. More likely is that they are stopping playing. If thats the case then there is little that can be given to them as an incentive.


JollyOrc wrote:Cursing items, or taking them away won't go down that nicely. Those who have just one set of boots of speed will go for it, but those who have several magic bags full won't. (for the reasons Psyco stated). And they WILL complain loudly if you take the items away if they die after that.


and the ones who are making the issue drag on are the ones with the several magic bags full of stuff.

AS i said, this would drag all stockpiles out into the open. It would make the problem look worse to start off with. But in the long term that would mean the stockpiles are gone.

This is not something the players get nothing out of. plot gear is a good thing. if that comes with undropable as well then IMO thats a fair trade.

If given enough notice those with stockpiles can sell gear off. A top end merchant PC who deals in this stuff will still be a top end merchant, they will just no longer deal in this type of product. They have the chance to trade these items off for multiple copies of the next level down. That next level down will then become premier trading stock, they actually win out.

JollyOrc wrote:Come up with plots that require the sacrifice of big items, in order to achieve something extraordinary. That way people will get something out of the loss :)


already being done

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Post by vergilius » Tue Apr 05, 2005 8:05 pm

JollyOrc wrote:
Come up with plots that require the sacrifice of big items, in order to achieve something extraordinary. That way people will get something out of the loss :)


The fairy war plot did exactly that. However, the trouble with DM plots is that it doesn't ultimately address the problem. Items, like gold, have an economy. We reach that ideal state when Items-in equals items-out. Currently, COPAP doesn't have much in the way of item sinks: Players usually leave their items behind rather than taking them with them when they leave/retire, which means that items accumulate even if they enter the economy slowly.

Likely, we'll need tons of small steps, and certainly Psyco's proposal won't address the issue in its entirety, but its a possible step in the right direction, particularly at the high end.

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Post by Orleron » Tue Apr 05, 2005 8:40 pm

Likely, we'll need tons of small steps, and certainly Psyco's proposal won't address the issue in its entirety, but its a possible step in the right direction, particularly at the high end.



This is not what I'd call a small step btw. Again, this is an engineering problem. If DM's require an occasional plot that sacrifices big items, the rate at which these items come into CoPaP is still much much higher than that. JO's idea will not work to do much by itself. It needs other things on top of it. This is just one of those possible things.

Also, I'd like to point out that in Psyco's idea he's making it a choice for players. According to his proposal, players do not have to do this to their items. They can choose to if they wish.
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Post by Arkonswrath » Tue Apr 05, 2005 10:35 pm

The problem is, and most players will see right through it.. is that you are not actually giving them a choice... You are telling them, in essence, that they will either have to curse their gear and forever walk around with it out of bags taking up space, or they will lose it. All this is going to do is piss people off.

What I think should be done in all honesty is to put out a global OOC request for players who have this kind of gear to voluntarily give it up in exchange for personallized gear.

Yes, it will be time consuming. Yes it will be a pain in the ass... but in essence, it is NOT the players fault that this gear exists. It is the DMs who gave this gear out who are responsible for it being there. Don't punish the players because a few DMs got crazy with the goods.

As for the 1%er question... I've been against the 1%er concept pretty much from my get go as a CoPaP player and especially as a DM. That's just inviting people to uber up friends chars prior to joining so they can keep the stuff while it's allowed. Make a ruling that there are no more 1%ers allowed. If a world wants to link up, they should purge any banned loot from their server and players in any way that they deem necessary. This eliminates the chance of more uber gear coming out of no where and flooding the economy.

I think if every world does what was mentioned above, then we probably wouldn't be looking at the issues we have now with so much uber shit being out there. Most of the players that have it are decent players who would likely be willing to give it up if requested. Why not try it and see what happens.

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Post by teleri » Wed Apr 06, 2005 12:29 am

There will be several sinks in the outlands unfortunatly they will in some ways perpetuate the issue. for example I am working on a "Planar Sword" you take to a smith a weapon of the + rating from each of the planes you wish to have the sword be native to drop a ton of cash min is (5 mil per + of bonus and another 5 mil for the crafting) then you get a sword that is +x in plane x, y, z, r, and l. Of course this is not an issue really yet but it will become one as time goes on and we get some PW that is in the Inner planes. Would love to see a PW set in the Fiery cities of the Effreti.
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Post by szabot » Wed Apr 06, 2005 12:39 am

Do you all want player input in this thread? :P

Just in case, since I'm reading it anyway, as a player who likes the idea of low-magic-item worlds (so long as the lowness is evenly distributed!), I can say that I'd be willing to trade in items with banned properties for a personalized item. I'd gladly do my part to getting the worlds in line with the intended vision, and personalized items are really much cooler anyway. If it was plot, too, that's a huge bonus. You could even perhaps allow the players to design it. Come up with a set of quidelines that they all must follow (similar to the guidelines for guild items), then let the players do all the work. They just then submit their item, it gets approved, then their item gets swapped for the banned item.

(Minor note: regarding "immune to specific spell" - does it matter what level the spell is? There are some items with immunity to specific spell that really aren't uber. The one I'm thinking of: Cloak of Arachnida (immunity to web).)

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Post by Apandapion » Wed Apr 06, 2005 1:53 am

I can't see this being implemented copap wide. If I remember the charter correctly, very few game mechanics are actually required copap-wide, especially if you are a NACS. So what would happen is that when someone visited world X with this feature, and the local DM stepped forward and superglued all of your items to you ... I think there's be some hard feelings.

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Post by kombinat » Wed Apr 06, 2005 2:23 am

Apandapion wrote:I can't see this being implemented copap wide. If I remember the charter correctly, very few game mechanics are actually required copap-wide, especially if you are a NACS. So what would happen is that when someone visited world X with this feature, and the local DM stepped forward and superglued all of your items to you ... I think there's be some hard feelings.


The proposal is that it is voluntary. Players are given an extra option that they don't have right now. No-one is forced into it. If no-one takes up the offer, then the situation is no different to the current.

The one part where the proposal comes unstuck in my view is when a DM uncurses an item, either deliberately, through misunderstanding of this system or being tricked into it by a player, and it gets handed over to another character. That kind of thing could be hard to keep track of unless worlds are keeping track of who has what uber gear pretty closely, and it is logged who takes up the offer.

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Post by JollyOrc » Wed Apr 06, 2005 2:58 am

Let me go into simplify mode. Meaning that the following opinions are radicalized, and are probably having a few holes. But they illuminate some things.


Orleron wrote: JO's idea will not work to do much by itself. It needs other things on top of it. This is just one of those possible things.


never claimed anything else :)

Getting rid of these items is a major undertaking. Basically there are two different approaches:

a) Take the items away.

b) Trust the players to give them up.


Choosing option a) will piss off a few, maybe a lot, of those players who own these items. In the end, Psycos suggestion is the type a) variant. Let me quote (emphasizes by me):

Psyco wrote:If everyone has this option, then if these type of items are found on corpses, DMs can loot more freely without feeling guilty (I know some DMs or even worlds would not feel guilty already, but some would) to remove the items. It was the players choice to not have the item marked.



Alas, option b) has proven not to work. Everyone knows the CoPaP staff dislikes these items being around in numbers, and everyone still hangs on to them.

This leaves us again with only a few options:

aa) suffer the whining and take the items away anyway. Some may quit, some may whine for a month, but in the end, all is well.

bb) suffer the items being around. Keep the status quo

cc) invent some rewards and odds and ends that make people trade in their items. A lot ot work.

I dimly recall that while we do decisions that may go hard with some folks, simply taking items away in an ooc manner isn't what we like to do. So aa) won't be done.

bb) is obviously something we don't like either, so we're stuck with cc): Trade-Ins...
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Post by Apandapion » Wed Apr 06, 2005 4:35 am

kombinat wrote:
Apandapion wrote:I can't see this being implemented copap wide. If I remember the charter correctly, very few game mechanics are actually required copap-wide, especially if you are a NACS. So what would happen is that when someone visited world X with this feature, and the local DM stepped forward and superglued all of your items to you ... I think there's be some hard feelings.


The proposal is that it is voluntary. Players are given an extra option that they don't have right now. No-one is forced into it. If no-one takes up the offer, then the situation is no different to the current.


Oh, I missed that. I shouldn't comment on things at this hour.

Edit: Wouldn't this lead to free plotting on uber items? Take your trade uber items, stash them, and then get this done while wearing only your live gear?

jollyorc wrote:cc) invent some rewards and odds and ends that make people trade in their items. A lot ot work.


It is a lot of work. And anything that is worth trading a broken item for is almost just as broken by definition.
Last edited by Apandapion on Wed Apr 06, 2005 4:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by kombinat » Wed Apr 06, 2005 4:45 am

JO,

Unless I misunderstand the original post, Psyco's proposal doesn't match that interpretation. The proposal is aimed at preventing the uber loot from being handed down as characters retire, so the gear leaves the world along with the retiring character. It makes the item's lifespan match the character's. The character is guaranteed to keep his uber gear, it will never be looted, in return he agrees not to keep it in circulation once he leaves.

Comparing to the interpretation in your post:

a) Take the items away

They're not being removed.. quite the opposite, the gear will be around as long as the character is, this way.

It seems to me that the comment about DMs being able to take uber gear that DOES drop is an aside and not the focus of the proposal. If that was the intent of the proposal, then yes it would be accurate to interpret it as intended to empower DMs to remove gear.

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Post by JollyOrc » Wed Apr 06, 2005 5:04 am

Apandapion wrote:And anything that is worth trading a broken item for is almost just as broken by definition.


Not necessarily. Custom Items with a nice IC background and description go a long way. Also you can get unusual combinations of powers, that are useful for exactly your character. Of course a true Powergamer won't like this. But roleplayers should.
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Post by JollyOrc » Wed Apr 06, 2005 5:13 am

kombinat wrote:They're not being removed.. quite the opposite, the gear will be around as long as the character is, this way.


yes and no.

The character with one set of Boots of Speed will happily agree, and the solution works nicely.

But the characters that have built up some cache, either because they are collectors, or merchants, they WILL loose items, simply because they wouldn't be able to carry on with all these items being cursed in their inventory. *coughs*Zach*coughs*

Don't get me wrong: I think the basic idea is nice. But I don't think that it will really help much. Too few players will actually take up this exchange. And DMs still won't mercilessly loot from those who didn't. If they do, watch the complaint inbox get full fast.

I work out such policies under a simple assumption: People are greedy bastards. This might not be true for you, you and you *points at random people*, but it helps keeping me sane.
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Post by kombinat » Wed Apr 06, 2005 5:28 am

True, I'm only looking at it from the point of view of characters with 1 or 2 uber loot items, not the uber merchants. How many 1-2 item characters are there, and how many are there that have bags full of banned gear? The numbers there should determine whether this approach would be effective would be in limiting the hand-me-downs or not.

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Post by Orleron » Wed Apr 06, 2005 8:11 am

The character with one set of Boots of Speed will happily agree, and the solution works nicely.

But the characters that have built up some cache, either because they are collectors, or merchants, they WILL loose items, simply because they wouldn't be able to carry on with all these items being cursed in their inventory. *coughs*Zach*coughs*


JO, this doesn't make sense according to what Psyco is saying.

If a player has one pair of BoS he will happily agree, yes. If that player is Zach who has ten gazillion pairs, then who cares? Zach is not going to choose this *voluntary* option. He goes on selling/hoarding as he always has. This does not affect him at all. He can choose to plotify a couple items on his person, and then choose to leave the rest of the items in his stash alone.

I don't see why people are concerned about Zach. This won't affect him at all, or anyone like him. Even the people who buy from Zach still have a choice. They can buy the BoS from him and plotify it, or they can buy it and keep it non-plot.


As far as item trade-ins go, I've lived through a couple of them... I directed the first two personally even. They are a lot of work and they are difficult to keep fair, and I think they may be a little impractical on CoPaP. For example how would you handle this case.

Bob the fighter is a native of Avlis. He's got uber gear to trade in, but Avlis is not doing an item trade-in. However, Abyss is doing an item trade-in. So Bob heads over to Abyss and trades in a bunch of uber gear for a personalized heirloom sword from his father. Wow, pretty cool... except the staff on Avlis now knows nothing about that sword, and really he didn't get the sword on Avlis, he got it on Abyss, so how can it be an heirloom sword unless his pappy was somehow in the Abyss to get it to him?

This situation could be worked out, but it would get dangerous and probably start some disagreements. The other tough thing about item trade-ins is to figure out what you give them for what. Our trades used to be three pluses/abilities on an item buys you one stage of a power. So for example, to get a 5/- piece of armor, you need to put in a +3 item. To get a 10/- piece of armor you need to put in a +3 item for the 5/- and another +3 item for the 10/-. An actual 10/+2 item would cost you like 5 items of +3, and we didn't accept items of less than +3 enchantment on the second trade-in.

It's a LOT of work, and not all CoPaP worlds would be willing to do it at the same time, and I also don't think it's necessary because I don't think the item balance is that bad.

This change proposed by Psyco does not immediately affect anything at all. It is one of those "long-term" changes that helps us in the long run.
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Post by JollyOrc » Wed Apr 06, 2005 8:28 am

I agree completely that trade-ins are something very difficult. No arguments there from me.


Even the people who buy from Zach still have a choice. They can buy the BoS from him and plotify it, or they can buy it and keep it non-plot.



This implies that the plotcursing is supposed to be an ongoing process, not a one-time-offer.

I guess that would work.
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Post by Arandil » Wed Apr 06, 2005 8:59 am

I think its a superb idea. But I have 2 questions...
- what about weapons? Making them plot is fine, but undroppable? Thats pretty impractical if you have to walk around with a pair of glowsticks equipped all the time
- is it just +5 stuff? I'd be inclined to include anything above +3 as an option, as nothing above +3 should be dropping.

From a players point of view, I love it. But I'm not an item hoarder, so may not be the norm.

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Post by Orleron » Wed Apr 06, 2005 9:16 am

This implies that the plotcursing is supposed to be an ongoing process, not a one-time-offer.



I'm not sure. Definitely a limited time offer at least. Possibly an ongoing process since all it takes is having a DM zap it with their wand.

@Arandil:
This is only for items with the so-called "banned" properties. AFAIK, no-drop does not mean you can't unequip it. It just means you can't put it on the ground.
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Post by Baron » Wed Apr 06, 2005 9:26 am

Actually I think more people will be willing to do this than one might expect. I know there were a few items I would have done this with Vichan.

when Vichan disappeared he willed some of his loot to other epic players, and he trashed three banned items in a trashcan right then and there. Sure it wasnt all he had but three items is three items.

It might behoove the team to simply ask the world to consider NOT giving their gear away when they retire, especially the gear in question. I think the majority of our players would consider it. If even a portion of the gear doesnt get handed down its an improvement.

- what about weapons? Making them plot is fine, but undroppable? Thats pretty impractical if you have to walk around with a pair of glowsticks equipped all the time


However the items must be made undroppable, otherwise all youve done is make the uber items that much more uber and if they are just plot they can still be traded or given away..they must be made undroppable.
The Lord's Prayer is 66 words, the Gettysburg Address is 286 words,there are 1,322 words in the Declaration of Independence, but government regulations on the sale of cabbage total 26,911 words.

Tharliss
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Post by Tharliss » Wed Apr 06, 2005 9:35 am

*Rubs his ears*

Man, I knew my ears had been burning for a reason! :wink:

A few quick comments to start off with:

1) Zach doesn't have bags and chests full of 'banned gear'. He DOES have quite a bit on his person that he uses, but as for stuff for trade, it's much more limited than what you guys are assuming. And the uber-items aren't even advertised as for sale/trade. I've always considered some of the items as a 'Gold Reserve', collecting dust under lock and key.

2) I have been, and always will be, in favor of reducing magic on Avlis. FFT doesn't create the magic, it just has a way of collecting it. Everyday on CoPaP there are DM events where items are handed out. Many of those items eventually work their way to places like FFT to be exchanged for something useful to that specific PC. FFT earns a bit for the transaction, whether it's another magic item or gold. But in essence, the stockpile keeps growing.

3) Making items 'undroppable', meaning that they could not even be put in bags, would make many PC's almost unplayable. I definitely understand the intent, making items non-transferable so they leave the economy when a PC retires, but I know Zach wouldn't be the only PC that this would affect.

4) Again, I'm open to whatever ideas the Team has in reducing magic. I've even told some DM's I wouldn't mind having FFT 'robbed' if it lead to a fun plot for the PC's, with rewards at the end that were suitable. As long as it's fun for everyone, I'm game for whatever.

Tharliss
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Post by Tharliss » Wed Apr 06, 2005 9:38 am

Baron wrote:.

It might behoove the team to simply ask the world to consider NOT giving their gear away when they retire, especially the gear in question. I think the majority of our players would consider it. If even a portion of the gear doesnt get handed down its an improvement.



I agree with this completely. This is something the Team could ask to have happen immediately, while it looked at long-term solutions.

I still think there will be viable IC reasons for people to pass things down, especially honorary 'Guild Leader' items, but in cases like this the PC's could confer with the Guild DM to make sure that's okay.

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Post by Malathyre » Wed Apr 06, 2005 10:09 am

Baron wrote:It might behoove the team to simply ask the world to consider NOT giving their gear away when they retire, especially the gear in question. I think the majority of our players would consider it. If even a portion of the gear doesnt get handed down its an improvement.


I can only speak for myself, but I would certainly do this. I have one piece of CoPaP banned gear in my 1.5+ years here, oddly enough from Baron himself. I had planned on letting this piece of gear die when my character does, but if it would be better for CoPaP, I'd trash the piece of gear now, to avoid the potential for it being lost/stolen/looted by someone else. There needn't be rewards or substitutions made, imho, as I think most players sooner or later will recognize that what is best for the world is not necessarily the same thing as what is best for them.
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