1. Post #1
    DERAILER OF THREADS DESTROYER OF IDIOTS
    Emperor Scorpious II's Avatar
    February 2009
    25,780 Posts
    On October 3, 2008, President George W. Bush signed the Troubled Asset Relief Program bill into law, delivering $450 billion to failing banks on the premise that it would prevent their collapse and stimulate a faltering economy. Like millions of Americans, Dmitri Williams, an associate professor of communications at the University of Southern California, found TARP troubling—not because the bill provided too much or (as many economists argued) too little, but because it was unscientific. “We did a half-a-trillion-dollar experiment with the economy and had no control group,” he says. Setting up a test bed for a program as complex as TARP might be difficult, but it wasn’t impossible. Williams had found just such a petri dish in videogames.

    Williams, a sociologist, had always based his research on data gathered by clipboard-wielding graduate students. But when people know they’re being watched, they change their answers with startling regularity, so much so that the behavior has a name, the Hawthorne effect (for the factory in Chicago where it was first observed). Four years ago, just before the economy imploded, Williams and his colleagues found a way to counteract the Hawthorne effect. After asking permission from the game’s manufacturer, Williams was able to access 4.5 terabytes of player data from the “massively multiplayer” online game EverQuest II. The data set was enormous; it chronicled every action, exchange and decision made by nearly five million players. By comparison, the General Social Survey, the benchmark for sociological research in the U.S., consists of some 800 questions answered by about 5,000 people. The game data also drew on behavior that was, at least from the perspective of the players, unobserved.

    Now Williams had to determine which behaviors were true in both the real world and in games, a process called mapping. He and a team of computer scientists looked at five months of economic data from EverQuest II, in which players buy and sell roughly two million items every month: a real economy at work. Williams then set about studying the data from two different servers, where two groups of people—a test group and a control—played the same game with the same conditions. The control group was filled with people who had already been playing EverQuest II, and the test group was made up entirely of new players. “It would be like taking a copy of the U.S. and removing the people and then seeing if you’d get the same country, with the same behavior when you repopulate it,” Williams says. Players’ activities in EverQuest II mapped theories of money that had never before been tested on such a large scale. Unsurprising though it may seem, the fact that as more gold coins were added, prices in the game rose, proved that the communities of EverQuest II could be a stand-in for the American economy—and a way to safely field-test those billion-dollar bailouts before any real money changes hands.
    Source: http://www.popsci.com/technology/art...-economy-works
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  2. Post #2
    Gold Member
    Electrocuter's Avatar
    December 2005
    6,182 Posts
    Reminds me of when there was that infectious disease in WoW and some health agencies monitored the spread of the disease.

    Pretty awesome stuff.
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  3. Post #3
    Valor
    Novangel's Avatar
    September 2008
    19,546 Posts
    It's pretty easy to study economy through videogames.
       EVE   
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  4. Post #4
    Gold Member
    FullStreak12's Avatar
    October 2007
    6,833 Posts
    Sell hats in real life as heavily as TF2
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  5. Post #5
    Gold Member
    Dennab
    June 2009
    6,496 Posts
    As cool as this idea is I'm not sure if that's the right game to test something like this for. Does EQ2 have a set-amount economy or is it like most other mmorpgs where gold is an inexhaustible resource constantly created by quest-giving NPCs and destroyed when buying things from merchant NPCS?

    AFAIK Eve has a set-amount economy and it's much more like the real world: corporations, employees, pirates and scammers... It'd be interesting to see if gleaning numbers from games like these could actually prove useful in understanding exactly how economies work.

  6. Post #6
    Gold Member
    Vaught's Avatar
    June 2008
    6,325 Posts
    This is actually pretty interesting. While I'm no economics buff, this could be a way to really test out or predict certain trends and patterns that could very well happen in real life. If any economy has it down to a point where it closely mimics a real world economy, it'd be EVE, but it could possibly work with other economies as well, granted no muling was involved and funding was granted from quests and selling crap, but again I'm no economics buff.

  7. Post #7
    Gold Member
    darkedone02's Avatar
    February 2006
    2,677 Posts
    It's pretty easy to make a game about economics, just make it fun or let it be a simulator. Are we talking about supply and demand? Bartering? Stock Market? How much political influence will be involved? will here be riots over bad economy stability or other events? There is alot of things that Economy effects the people, country, and politics, might as well add them all and make a tutorial to how to play this game.

  8. Post #8
    Gold Member
    Madman_Andre's Avatar
    November 2007
    7,239 Posts
    EVE Online.

    That is all.
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  9. Post #9
    Hysteric's Avatar
    March 2012
    385 Posts
    HATS
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  10. Post #10
    Gold Member
    Ericson666's Avatar
    May 2011
    3,492 Posts
    All I've learned from the TF2 economy is everyone wants to rip you off, every time
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  11. Post #11
    I'M A SHAAARK!
    Lambeth's Avatar
    October 2009
    14,849 Posts
    just watch one session of dwarf fortress
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  12. Post #12
    Gold Member
    gufu's Avatar
    May 2008
    9,293 Posts
    People who talk about EVE have to realize that they like the EQ because it provides a big pool of data of 5 million compared to EVEs rather small numbers.
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  13. Post #13
    Gold Member
    Mingebox's Avatar
    February 2010
    14,742 Posts
    just watch one session of dwarf fortress
    I for one welcome our biscut-based economy.
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  14. Post #14
    Cheesy and delicious.
    Snickerdoodle's Avatar
    August 2010
    6,473 Posts
    Reminds me of when I used to play Runescape some time ago. I would be a little kid, watching the prices of lobsters drop and rise on those grand exchange graphs.
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  15. Post #15
    Gold Member
    Political Gamer's Avatar
    October 2009
    5,183 Posts
    Sell hats in real life as heavily as TF2
    TF2 is an interesting example of what was setup to be a barter economy turn into a market driven currency economy. Its far from prefect but its fascinating to watch.
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  16. Post #16
    Lmao Pics Authority Jesus
    Dennab
    February 2012
    8,769 Posts
    Video games teach me all I need to know about the economy

    kill everyone
    loot their corpses
    strip their bodies
    sell to the nearest locally owned Treasure/weapon/clothing store
    walk out with an Iron helmet and broadsword to work a job
    get paid for a murder

  17. Post #17
    Gold Member
    SomeDumbShit's Avatar
    January 2010
    4,197 Posts
    If an economy in SimCity is going bad, a Volcano will surely cometh, and wash away the town.
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  18. Post #18
    Gold Member
    JustGman's Avatar
    December 2005
    6,058 Posts
    TF2 is an interesting example of what was setup to be a barter economy turn into a market driven currency economy. Its far from prefect but its fascinating to watch.
    The TF2 economy failed in every way possible.
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  19. Post #19
    Gold Member
    Sgt Doom's Avatar
    March 2005
    20,528 Posts
    Video games teach me all I need to know about the economy

    kill everyone
    loot their corpses
    strip their bodies
    sell to the nearest locally owned Treasure/weapon/clothing store
    walk out with an Iron helmet and broadsword to work a job
    get paid for a murder
    It's not murder if they've got more legs or spikes on their heads than you have!

  20. Post #20
    I'M A SHAAARK!
    Lambeth's Avatar
    October 2009
    14,849 Posts
    The TF2 economy failed in every way possible.
    Dunno valve doesn't seem to be complaining
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  21. Post #21
    Gold Member
    Jax Strife's Avatar
    July 2007
    2,063 Posts
    World of Warcraft would be interesting to look at like this. A relatively new server versus an aged one. The economies are hilariously different.

  22. Post #22
    DarkMonkey's Avatar
    January 2009
    3,943 Posts
    The problem with game economies is that it is literally impossible to be unemployed and typically there are no living expense analogues.

  23. Post #23
    Master Cheese Tactician
    The Decoy's Avatar
    August 2011
    994 Posts
    the economy in pokemon is an interesting one. and a scary one.

  24. Post #24
    100% Homemade
    ZestyLemons's Avatar
    September 2007
    8,388 Posts
    the economy in pokemon is an interesting one. and a scary one.
    Where wallets can only hold 999,999 pokedollars and the bikes cost a million.
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  25. Post #25
    Fight until death, shoot until empty.

    November 2009
    15,896 Posts
    First thing that came to mind, SimCity 4
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  26. Post #26
    Gold Member
    thedekoykid's Avatar
    April 2006
    975 Posts
    The problem with game economies is that it is literally impossible to be unemployed and typically there are no living expense analogues.
    Well, technically for a good "Job" in World of warcraft you have to keep your gear repaired, uptodate, enchanted etc.
    You can spend a fair bit of gold in that.
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  27. Post #27
    Gold Member
    ewitwins's Avatar
    December 2009
    14,230 Posts
    It's pretty easy to study economy through videogames.
       EVE   
    So in other words, the Russians are going to take over everything.

  28. Post #28
    Marcolade's Avatar
    November 2008
    1,127 Posts
    All I've learned from the TF2 economy is everyone wants to rip you off, every time
    That's capitalism for you. vv
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  29. Post #29
    Gold Member
    fishyfish777's Avatar
    November 2007
    6,257 Posts
    cheese steak jimmy's
    cheese steak jimmy's
    cheese steak jimmy's
    cheese steak jimmy's
    cheese steak jimmy's
    cheese steak jimmy's
    cheese steak jimmy's
    cheese steak jimmy's

    world hunger solved
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  30. Post #30
    All I've learned from the TF2 economy is everyone wants to rip you off, every time
    The TF2 economy is equivalent to two dogs fighting over a scrap of meat for the rest of eternity.
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  31. Post #31
    elitehakor v2's Avatar
    June 2010
    3,836 Posts
    My dad (who's an economist) wanted me to play EVE and write a paper about the economy
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  32. Post #32

    March 2012
    321 Posts
    Capitalism 2 taught me that seaports can be a total bastard and put companys out of business with their cheap imports.
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  33. Post #33
    USER HAS BEEN DISCONNECTED FROM REALITY - RETRY CONNECTION IN 5 MINUTES
    Dennab
    February 2006
    22,239 Posts
    This is actually pretty interesting. While I'm no economics buff, this could be a way to really test out or predict certain trends and patterns that could very well happen in real life. If any economy has it down to a point where it closely mimics a real world economy, it'd be EVE, but it could possibly work with other economies as well, granted no muling was involved and funding was granted from quests and selling crap, but again I'm no economics buff.
    The problem with EVE is that there is no regulation. It would be like studying the Somalian economy to gain insight into our own economic trends. Sure, you might get some valid data, but the economy functions much different when thievery, piracy, and cheating people are commonplace.

  34. Post #34
    Gold Member
    trent_roolz's Avatar
    November 2008
    2,068 Posts
    Don't EQ2 and most MMOs have infinite sources of money though? As in, money is not cyclic. You buy something from an NPC, and your money disappears into the air as you get your item. An NPC pays you, and the money is instantly there when it previously did not exist. This isn't really a great stand-in for a real life economy.

    Edited:

    Reminds me of when there was that infectious disease in WoW and some health agencies monitored the spread of the disease.

    Pretty awesome stuff.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corrupted_Blood_incident

  35. Post #35
    Gold Member
    Mabus's Avatar
    July 2007
    5,146 Posts
    thought this would be eve related that games crazy.

  36. Post #36
    Gold Member
    Croix's Avatar
    May 2008
    2,750 Posts
    Don't EQ2 and most MMOs have infinite sources of money though? As in, money is not cyclic. You buy something from an NPC, and your money disappears into the air as you get your item. An NPC pays you, and the money is instantly there when it previously did not exist. This isn't really a great stand-in for a real life economy.

    Edited:



    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corrupted_Blood_incident
    New money is created from nowhere in real life too
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  37. Post #37
    USER HAS BEEN DISCONNECTED FROM REALITY - RETRY CONNECTION IN 5 MINUTES
    Dennab
    February 2006
    22,239 Posts
    Don't EQ2 and most MMOs have infinite sources of money though? As in, money is not cyclic. You buy something from an NPC, and your money disappears into the air as you get your item. An NPC pays you, and the money is instantly there when it previously did not exist. This isn't really a great stand-in for a real life economy.
    I can't speak for EQ2, but money isn't very infinite in WoW. The economy is actually fairly well kept because a lot of the money you take in from quests and loot is taken out by repairs. That keeps the auction house economy a lot more stable, since you can't really farm quests for obscene amounts of gold and gold is taken out of the economy regularly.

    It doesn't matter if money cycles between merchants or not. The auction house and other player to player activity is what really matters in terms of the economy.

  38. Post #38
    Gold Member
    Cone's Avatar
    August 2011
    19,168 Posts
    It's not murder if they've got more legs or spikes on their heads than you have!
    But doesn't getting a new helmet with more spikes on it increase how obvious it is that people can kill you and get away with it?

    either nobody would become rich and live long enough to enjoy it, or the hat market would plummet in stock value

  39. Post #39
    Gold Member
    Griffster26's Avatar
    November 2011
    12,766 Posts
    Remember that time in EVE Online when this happened?





    Economy right there.
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  40. Post #40
    WiP about GW2
    eternalflamez's Avatar
    November 2011
    4,789 Posts
    New money is created from nowhere in real life too
    Yup, saying that this isn't true would be like saying:
    When we first thought of having money, we just handed out 1000 billion dollar to everyone, and see what happened, apparantly everything worked out all right!

    We used to have "less" money, so everything cost "less" respectively too. (For instance, a bread costs 1 euro, when it used to be a few cents, 100 years ago. They even had coins for 1/8th of a cent, in Holland anyway.)
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