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Proposal for fixing the plex and skill injector prices

Author
The Amish Mafia
#1 - 2017-07-28 10:36:02 UTC  |  Edited by: Aurora Akimoto Kumiko
Hello!

I don't roam around here too often, but I would like to give my 2 cents to this issue right now.


[Problem Analysis]


I have noticed that plex and skill injector / extractor prices have skyrocketed. Analysing the problem I realised that the root of the problem is skill farmers. PPL who just sit somewhere with top implants gathering skill points.

These characters need skill extractors that you can only buy for plex, they need to be plexed too, so this means that they are artificially increasing plex prices.

The true root of the issue is ofc the players who are looking for instant solutions to their problems, who can't wait 7 days for a simple skill to finish. This issue is inherited from the EVE skill system. I have always said that the skills need re-balancing because it is stupid that a 0.05% increase in range will be 1 month of time and ofc you need that because your enemies have it and you are that much less effective in combat.

But I digress.

How do I know that the root of the problem is SP farmers? Check the prices of "Multiple Character Training licence"

I don't want skill extractors and injectors gone from the game but they need to be changed. There is no way a new player can farm out a plex in any reasonable amount of time and this will cost CCP in the long run a lot of potential earnings. No new players = no player influx = no pvp content for oldies = deminishing playerbase = less money for CCP.

As is, EVE is a hard game to recommend to your friends.


[Potential Solution]

First of all, make sure you have skill boosters in the shop that allow faster SP gain. It doesn't have to be powerful, it should be balanced in a way that for 1/4th plex price you get around 1/4th extra SP per month. This will be used as a base item of comparison, a sort of median. Make it so that players can not create this item, only buy it. (If you add this to packs, etc, make sure that it is auto activated so no selling, or hoarding the item)

Next, revamp the skill injectors. Change the lore a bit if needed, the proposed change is that it still gives the appropriate SP boost as it is described now, but instead of instant solution, it works over time with the skill queue. I would remove the "apply skill points now" from individual skills and only make it work for the queue you already set (This is not a major issue as ppl can rearrange their queue anytime).

Add a "neural weakened" state to the character's stats. This means they can only activate a skill injector every 2 weeks or so. Add a similar nerf to a skill extractor. This would mean you can't create more than 2-3 skill injectors per month.(This will only affect skill point farmers a bit and that is fine)

Once activated the skill injector cannot be turned off.



How does this solve the issue? How is introducing another skill item to the shop for plex solve the issue?



This is a soft nerf of the injectors and extractors, you still get the value you get from them now, but it removes the instant feedback. Even if you spend on a skill injector and a skill booster you will still have to wait for that shiny ship for a week or two.

Additional nerf is that you can not use injectors too often, so even if you have the money you can't get instant skills.

Having a limit on how many skill points you can farm per month will push the SP farmers a bit, making it less viable to farm SP.

Having a base median item that you can obtain only for plex (real money) will put up a base median value. Since you can use both Skill injector and booster at the same time skill injectors will still be viable, but with no instant solution demand will decrease.

This will still pull SP from the game, it will still produce revenue for CCP in the form of skill extractors, injectors and boosters. Instant gratification is removed from the game, meaning that we artificially increased the importance of the item while managing to keep its value down.

Setting base median price will ensure that ppl will think about comparing. Why would you buy a skill injector when a similar effect can be achieved from a booster for half the price?

It will put a choke on the market but skill injectors will still be viable as you can use them alongside boosters.

Changing how the injectors work will control demand, and it would be more enhancement rather than an instant solution to your problems.


Again, I don't have issues with skill injectors and what they do. The issue is the artificially inflated prices of plex, that make it impossible for Alphas to go Omega thus reducing new player influx.


What do you think guys?
Pandemic Horde
#2 - 2017-07-28 11:01:32 UTC
I'm surprised there isn't a limit on how many times you can extract a character per year.
Gallente Federation
#3 - 2017-07-28 11:23:51 UTC  |  Edited by: Ded Akara
And if they don't like to make such a large change, a change that could help would be to 1. make plex only tradable one time after purchase from CCP. Meaning the person who paid CCP for the plex can sell them for isk on the market but nobody can buy them for isk with the plan to re-sell for them for isk again.

And possibly 2. 1. seperate skill extractors from plex so people can't use that as a method to profit from hoarding instead.

I see no reason why players should be allowed to buy plex from other players with the plan to use them to increase their ingame wealth as a result of market manipulation. This little scheme is only harming the game by artificially driving up the cost to subscribe.
#4 - 2017-07-28 11:24:02 UTC
There are no issues with skill injector or plex prices.
The Amish Mafia
#5 - 2017-07-28 11:26:05 UTC
Hello Meow Kitty wrote:
I'm surprised there isn't a limit on how many times you can extract a character per year.


GREED, that is the true answer here. CCP Wanted to make money really fast. But their short term goals most likely set EVE on a self destructive path. And if let rampant this few months right here will mark the beginning of the end for EVE. But lets not jump ahead, that is years away at the worst, but if left unchecked, the statue will be the only thing left of EVE.
Gallente Federation
#6 - 2017-07-28 11:28:03 UTC  |  Edited by: Ded Akara
Arcelian wrote:
There are no issues with skill injector or plex prices.


Injectors up from 600m to 850m in 2-3 months

PLEX up from 1.1 bill to 1.8 bill in 2-3 months. A greater increase in 2-3 months than in 2-3 years.

No problem you say?

The constant forum threads seem to indicate that many players DO have a problem with it. Nearly half of the top forum threads are about plex prices.
The Amish Mafia
#7 - 2017-07-28 11:37:34 UTC
Another major issue I see is the free ISK flow.

That inflates ISK to incredibly high level. Right now, if you go to 0sec you can make a billion in a day or even less. This money is free, printed, and flows into the market. Normally this would not be an issue!

But recent changes made it so that less ISK is removed from the game.

- Citadels have less taxes
- no major wars or combat means no destruction, everything player created remains in the game.
- no spike losses no spark of combat means no ships lost = no ISK drawn from the game.
- mining bugs make insanely cheap materials for production = ton of items flooding the market pushing prices down meaning even less ISK is pulled from the game.

With so much ISK being free printed in 0sec and nothing to draw this ISK from the game the value of ISK is dropping. Important modules and ships are too expensive for an Alpha, plexing an Alpha is almost impossible.

Even though there is major production, nobody can afford the items as the value of the money is almost 0. Lets say you make 100 mill a day in profits, pure profits. Even then the next day that 100 mill only worths 90 mill, so you need to do much more to sustain he same level of income.

And this is the interesting part: Supply and demand is in check. Every aspect of the market is in order and functioning normally except for that one item. PLEX... (can't you have called it AUR and leave PLEX as it is, this is darn confusing now).
The Amish Mafia
#8 - 2017-07-28 12:21:09 UTC  |  Edited by: Aurora Akimoto Kumiko
Let me explain myself a bit since it can be a bit confusing.

The game has two currencies. ISK and PLEX. Having them interchangeable at any time locks them together in a form of weights and counter weights.

This is a beautiful system of balance. It mimics real word economy of real items (gold etc) and currencies. It is normal that currencies drop compared to real items. In EVE terms, ISK is always dropping in price as it is freely generated by players. Plex on the other hand is a different breed. It can only be both with an outside currency, meaning that it is fairly limited.

This system is normally balanced. If there is a surplus of Plex ppl will buy Plexes with less amount of ISK meaning ISK values in general rise. But if there is greater demand for Plex ISK values drop as more and more Plex is being removed from the game.

Before the Citadel update this was fairly balanced, resulting in 100 mill increase in plex prices every 4-8 months. After the citadel update, less ISK was drawn from the game. Meaning Plex prices could go 100mill increase every 2-3 months.
It was easier to sell and produce items, the raw material influx was the major limiting factor. This meant that raw material prices have increased. (Parity Decryptor increased from 900k to 2.4mill in a matter of days.) So even with higher production capacity raw material prices have increased making production only viable for less people.

Even though production was more accessible then ever, due to changes described above it was only profitable for smaller groups of ppl.

This started a market trend of increasing production volumes while the prices roughly remained the same. This normally doesn't happen but production changes had increased volume but no extra demand. This meant extra production capacity. Overall driving more into the market but with less margins.

The next issue came after the skill update.

Another form of currency that is created from thin air. This was again tied to Plex. It took some time, to set up the SP farms, after they became a viable form of money making 2-3 months after the update.

The problem was demand here. Inherited, EVEs skill system is time based. The only way to circumvent this measure is by Skill injectors. Add to this that PLEX went from an actual game time item to premium shop currency as well...

AND BOOM you have the recipe for a market disaster.

1 freely generated currency (Injectors) that relies heavily on a constant currency Plex (Plexing account and extractors) that powers the cash shop and all is tied up in a freely generated currency bundle of ISK.

Demand for skill injectors have not changed, it roughly moves the same volumes, but plex has moved much more in the same time with less inflow from the outside. Meaning Plex is becoming a sought after item, it creates demand that increases the prices of injectors and extractors. This in turn pushes the prices of these items.

No major wars and citadel update meant that there is no ISK being removed from circulation leaving Plex prices to increase even further.


So how is it possible that module and ship prices are not increasing while the Plex is skyrocketing. Answer: stockpiles and Market LAG.
People produced these modules and items with a minimum margin in mind. There is no increased demand for them so they can't increases prices. there is no volume justification for this.

But Market will catch up. good example t3 cruiser modules. Remember when a t3 cruiser base (submodules and ship) only cost about 2-300 mill?

When the t3 cruiser reworks were announced ppl stopped production so stockpiles went away. Now things are more expensive. Admittedly t3 cruiser demand increased but we are talking about almost double the price now and still rising. Yet, the volume of items moved around still did not increase or decrease rapidly. It is roughly what you would expect but the prices are way out of proportion.

And add the summer hiatus to all this and it is blown out of proportions. This has blown out to the point where even the SP farmers can't sustain their farm. Yet Plex prices are rising and most likely we will hit 2 billion for a plex... (CCP come on this is confusing really...) for an ACTUAL EXTENSION (500plex)
Ivy League
#9 - 2017-07-28 13:28:06 UTC
So a couple of points.

1) why are high plex prices bad? so far the only argument i've seen for it is "new players can't grind one in any reasonable time frame." Since when was it expected that a new player SHOULD be able to do that? I remember when I first started playing almost a decade ago. new players where told about plex sure, but we where also told that it wasn't something we should ever expect to hit in under a year or two. sure it was possible to get lucky and manage it much sooner, but since when does that mean a newbie is ENTITLED to be able to grind one out.

2) if a new player is being driven from the game because the grind is too hard, then that means they are spending far too much of their time grinding instead of playing, and would probably burn out on the game sooner rather than later anyways.

3) SP farmers are driving new players from the game, which will cost CCP money... okay, sure, they might loose a few accounts here or there because of the plex prices. but what if I shut down my farms? thats 9 extra accounts gone, and i'm not even a large scale farmer.

4) your potential solution completely misses the entire point of injectors. if people are willing to wait for a skill, then they will just wait for it. your "trickle" method completely ignores 2 of the primary uses for injectors, those being
1. you need something for a fleet and you need it NOW. example: there is a roaming gang getting ready to go out, BUT they don't have anyone who can fly t2 logi online, one of their fleet members though has solid logi skills, but is just missing cruiser V. so he injects the SP for it, trains up for logi and the fleet goes out, takes an hour or so to do.
With your trickle method, that same thing could never happen. which means the fleet doesn't go out, which means less content for everyone.
2. Training off-map skills, this impacts mid-level players the most, many ships have all sorts of weird pre-requisites from various different remaps. and those bonus remaps, if used intelligently, can take a lot of the sting out of "optimal training" but they only go so far. to use a personal example: I am in a per-will map right now, i don't have a new remap available until november. I am missing just a handful of int-mem skills that are keeping me from flying hictors. with your trickle method, I would need to train off map (even at a slightly increased rate) in order to get those skill points, when instead I could be putting that accelerated rate towards say, capital hulls. it would still be a net negative SP gain vs if I had stayed in my primary remap and just thrown the bulk SP towards the off map skills. Which means if I want to keep optimal or near optimal training, I'd be waiting at least another 4 months to fly the ship I want (that i'm only missing a week or two of skills for) rather than being able to fly it now.

5) limiting the amount of SP farmers can extract in order to "nerf" them... how good do you think the margins on SP farming actually are? because as a SP farmer I can tell you first hand they actually aren't that great. I only make a net profit of about 200-400m per month from each character, which is why the farms tend to be so large. Compare that to even vexor ratting, where you can make that amount in a day or two without breaking a sweat. and thats without even getting into the fact that injector farming is an ISK sink, albeit a small one in the form of transaction fees. while vexor ratting is an isk faucet that only helps to drive prices higher and its obvious that you don't actually understand how the economy works.

6) and i'm going to skip over quite a lot here since this is quickly turning into an essay. But to address the issue of why ship and module prices have not seen the same sort of increase as the isk supply has gone up. that is not an issue of market lag, but instead one of over-supply. FAR more ships and modules are built every month than ever gets destroyed, and far more minerals get mined than ever get used. the INSANE rorqual mining buff that lasted for far far too long only made that issue worse. Couple that with meta modules regularly dropping from rats (thankfully going away soon™) and you have an artificial cap put on the price of modules.
T3's increased in price because they have a much more limited supply of materials, the moon mining changes will likely see an increase in the price of T2 hulls and modules as well (a good thing IMO, I miss the days when t2 was considered "bling fit")

overall, you have made it clear that you don't actually understand how SP farming works, or even how the game economy works in general. you are also using the "think of the newbros" to try and distract attention away from the fact that this is really just a personal complaint about "the prices are too damn high" and you have selected SP farmers as your boogyman.
Gallente Federation
#10 - 2017-07-28 13:32:55 UTC
Ded Akara wrote:
Arcelian wrote:
There are no issues with skill injector or plex prices.


Injectors up from 600m to 850m in 2-3 months

PLEX up from 1.1 bill to 1.8 bill in 2-3 months. A greater increase in 2-3 months than in 2-3 years.

No problem you say?

The constant forum threads seem to indicate that many players DO have a problem with it. Nearly half of the top forum threads are about plex prices.


Supply and demand I wouldsay. There is a reason why price went up.
The Amish Mafia
#11 - 2017-07-28 14:18:24 UTC
Bjorn Tyrson wrote:
So a couple of points.


sure it was possible to get lucky and manage it much sooner, but since when does that mean a newbie is ENTITLED to be able to grind one out.


I agree, even when I started ppl told me not to bother with Plex until I can reasonably farm out 800mill a month. But there was a paradime shift. If eve stayed pay to play it would have died by now. We need newbros, we need ppl to come and enjoy the game and pay. And telling them: hey you can farm you plex, but it will take 5 months for each plex is not a good way to introduce game.


...2) if a new player is being driven from the game because the grind is too hard, then that means they are spending far too much of their time grinding instead of playing, and would probably burn out on the game sooner rather than later anyways....

This is not true. EVERY game has a certain level of grind and ppl will put up with it. The problem is Grind / return. Have you played a recent korean mmo? How did you like 50hours of grind for an item of a set of 34 that you have to drop out randomly?


...but what if I shut down my farms? thats 9 extra accounts gone, and i'm not even a large scale farmer...

If there will be no players to buy your SP farms, who will you sell to? If everyone on the server is an SP farmer... what will you do? This is the problem of MLM that applies here pretty nicely.


...4) your potential solution completely misses the entire point of injectors...

I give you that, you are right there. But this is the problem with injectors. It created a "I want this now" and "I don't wait" attitude that is ramping up now. Before it was : "You want to do something get 30x alts to do it"... neither is good tbh.


...5) limiting the amount of SP farmers can extract in order to "nerf" them... how good do you think the margins on SP farming actually are? because as a SP farmer I can tell you first hand they actually aren't that great. I only make a net profit of about 200-400m per month from each character...

I am happy for that it is so low, but you do realize you are causing the plex issue for yourself... well tbh CCP screwed you over when they removed aur from the game, but still.


...overall, you have made it clear that you don't actually understand how SP farming works, or even how the game economy works in general. you are also using the "think of the newbros" to try and distract attention away from the fact that this is really just a personal complaint about "the prices are too damn high" and you have selected SP farmers as your boogyman...

Ouch! That cuts deep man! But I respect you for that! But just a correction: I am one of THE JITA guys :D But to give you credit in the past I made few risky investments that did not pay off so I lost most of my money annnnnnnnnnd I am just restarting nowadays.


However, let me make this clear: I cant be bothered with Plex prices. I pay for my monthly sub and I only use Plex as a money storage. For me this is the best thing ever, I am just waiting on the peak to sell off my Plexes :D

But the issue is: high plex means less omegas, less omegas = less players, less players = less money for me. Some ppl struggle to farm out the Plex for their monthly status. This means they will not be able to uphold the omega status they need to fly with their corp with a reasonable fit. And they will draw a line. Many ppl will not be able to enjoy the game in alpha status and they will step down. There is a certain level of hardness you expect from EVE but these prices are making a lot of people's EVE career impossible.
#12 - 2017-07-28 14:19:20 UTC
I don't think there is an issue with plex price, either. High supply drove up the price. That's all there is.

Now, I do think there is an issue with the high supply which, I think, is the result of skill injectors. CCP needs to do something about skill injectors and limit it in some ways.

Finally, plexing one's account is not an entitlement but an extra option. Players should remember that.
I feel that, for some players, plexing their accounts became their goal. This "free sub" plex thing has gotten over their minds.
Gallente Federation
#13 - 2017-07-28 17:52:00 UTC
Kosoku wrote:
I don't think there is an issue with plex price, either. High supply drove up the price. That's all there is.

Now, I do think there is an issue with the high supply which, I think, is the result of skill injectors. CCP needs to do something about skill injectors and limit it in some ways.

Finally, plexing one's account is not an entitlement but an extra option. Players should remember that.
I feel that, for some players, plexing their accounts became their goal. This "free sub" plex thing has gotten over their minds.


Erm, I think CCP WANTS people to PLEX their account. Since otherwise there'd be far fewer players.
#14 - 2017-07-28 18:03:25 UTC
Kosoku wrote:
I don't think there is an issue with plex price, either. High supply drove up the price. That's all there is.

Now, I do think there is an issue with the high supply which, I think, is the result of skill injectors. CCP needs to do something about skill injectors and limit it in some ways.

Finally, plexing one's account is not an entitlement but an extra option. Players should remember that.
I feel that, for some players, plexing their accounts became their goal. This "free sub" plex thing has gotten over their minds.



Feels like you're reversing supply and demand in your post above. High demand drives up prices. High supply drives them down.
#15 - 2017-07-28 18:06:21 UTC
Ded Akara wrote:

Erm, I think CCP WANTS people to PLEX their account. Since otherwise there'd be far fewer players.


Perhaps since, with plex, you are required to pay something equivalent to 20 US dollars instead of 15.

Eve online does have fewer people playing now but, at the same time, it looks to me that there are more people wanting to pay for skins, plex, and whatnot. This trend will probably drive more people away from the game but CCP's profit may remain identical.
Aprilon Dynasty
#16 - 2017-07-28 18:49:12 UTC
Ded Akara wrote:
Arcelian wrote:
There are no issues with skill injector or plex prices.


Injectors up from 600m to 850m in 2-3 months

PLEX up from 1.1 bill to 1.8 bill in 2-3 months. A greater increase in 2-3 months than in 2-3 years.

No problem you say?

The constant forum threads seem to indicate that many players DO have a problem with it. Nearly half of the top forum threads are about plex prices.


Well the prices are set by players, its not down to CCP to fix, if people stop buying them at high prices then people will stop selling them at high prices, and i can make that money in 2 days >.>
The Amish Mafia
#17 - 2017-07-28 18:53:53 UTC
Cypherous wrote:
i can make that money in 2 days >.>


Why is everyone able to do it? :D
Ivy League
#18 - 2017-07-28 21:08:20 UTC
Aurora Akimoto Kumiko wrote:
Cypherous wrote:
i can make that money in 2 days >.>


Why is everyone able to do it? :D


because with incursions, or carrier ratting, 100m an hour is far from impossible. (money that is coming out of thin air mind you, driving inflation) and i've heard that people can get much more than that. ~8 hours a day for 2 days might seem like a lot. but some people got that kind of dedication.
Gallente Federation
#19 - 2017-07-28 22:44:12 UTC
Bjorn Tyrson wrote:
Aurora Akimoto Kumiko wrote:
Cypherous wrote:
i can make that money in 2 days >.>


Why is everyone able to do it? :D


because with incursions, or carrier ratting, 100m an hour is far from impossible. (money that is coming out of thin air mind you, driving inflation) and i've heard that people can get much more than that. ~8 hours a day for 2 days might seem like a lot. but some people got that kind of dedication.


You mean some people got no life :))))
#20 - 2017-07-29 01:17:35 UTC  |  Edited by: Anna Maria Yolo
Your analysis of the "plex price" problem can be shortened to one sentence: "PLEX price is to high for me", right?
So let's analyse is it a problem for CCP ? Really?
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