Price Fixing in Bazaar

Discussion in 'The Veterans' Lounge' started by Picaresque, Jul 27, 2015.

  1. Battleaxe Augur

    Just as obviously people like me know which items price gougers are vulnerable on and which they are not.

    It works best on items that have a shorter desirability span and a nearly infinite supply rather than ones that will be desired forever and have a limited supply. Othni was a great example.

    The first time it appeared I undercut by 25% and made a couple of million pp. The second time it appeared I made a fast million pp, undercut by 50%, watched two rice gougers try to buy me out, and undercut the original price by 75%. They removed their Othni from sale (their high prices served as advertising for my low prices) and waited me out.

    The third time it appeared I offered a full set price of 20K right off the bat and didn't make much pp. The market was over and those who attempted to monopolize the market were stuck with their overstock. (I wasn't. My monthly pp needs are low, I don't use Krono, and I was happy giving away a dozen or so sets.)

    The same thing has been done with certain collectables. For example Pinky Toes have been overpriced on my server (30-40K pp). I have 20ish. I'm certain at least 4 others have 20ish. I can offer 10 at 15K, drop to 10K if I sell most of them. If others get in on the action the price will be driven down to 10K and stay at 10K so long as any of us are in the bazaar with the lower price.

    You can't prevent price gouging but you can reduce income from it periodically over the short haul. If a trader relies on bazaar sales each month to buy krono you can toast them.

    See the Hunt Bros. and their attempt to corner the silver market. The hidden supply was too vast (coin melting and Indian dowry silver) and the rewards for burning the market too high (sell before the market tanks).
  2. Goth Augur

    IMO people that make items worthless temporarily like you describe are sort of the reason why people stop selling after a while.

    Then the market is dead again. So when someone goes looking for something and its not there this is sort of why. the people trying to sell the stuff for a decent amount of plat no longer bother with it.

    Its a great way to drive the competition out but also hurts the buyers in the long run.

    Though its hard to tell what so and so has. they could be a wood-bee seller or someone with 100Mpp+ they can loose 2M to make 5M later no big deal to them.
  3. FcsevenXIII Augur

    The type of shenanigans the op posted about makes me stay as far away from the baz as possible. I was able to spot the resellers my first month back from a long time away. I was trying to buy that cruddy tds T1 ftp gear for an alt and noticed someone buying it all and reselling it at a fixed price. This was on Tunare btw.

    I guess some people get their kicks playing corner the market in the baz all day but I personally cant see why. This is not 2003 anymore and you cant make a lot of real money doing it. Its sad and pathetic in a way.
  4. Syrup Augur

    ;) *wink*

    ...EQ has a huge RMT market.
  5. ShadowMan Augur

    People do it for a reason. With the addition of kronos some could argue its more profitable now then ever.
  6. Goth Augur

    krono is probably the only item in the game with a hard demand for those not willing to spend $$$ but rather PP. many people will spend whatever on a krono for the 30 day sub. you simply just have to buy out those willing to sell for much lower.

    There are some secrets to making people drop there prices to a point where you can buy them up. Some are so hard up to sell there krono its rather easy, beings they are so impatient.

    If you had enough plat to buy out the market and set a hard line you could make a bit of plat. but unless you have enough plat to buy out the market you will probably loose a lot of plat.

    Playing the krono market game is sort of win win if you do it right. Free subs and make money doing it.

    Another benefit of playing the krono market is if you are selling other high end goods. you buy their krono they buy your high end goods.. you give them pp and they just give it right back to you..
  7. Kravitz Augur

    QFT. I will go out on a buying spree dump and buy 10 million pp worth of stuff at a time, then adjust my buyer so all the resellers/buyers, I just bought out have to buy over what they priced for in trader. Now the only way the item can come into the market is if you farm it (which takes awhile to get a decent stock off). Now that 10 million splurge may seem like I took a huge hit but over 2-3 weeks of monopolizing the market, I've net'd about 30 million.

    This works incredibly well at the start of an expansion. At the start of TDS, I was buying Glowing spell runes for 1.1 million in buyer and selling for 2.1 million on trader. None of the resellers dared to go above my buyer, so I basically locked them out of the market. And there was no way to farm them quick enough, as it was a new item which was much harder to farm, so I was able to monopolize the market for 6-8 weeks before they really started trickling in. At which point any extra stock I had, I just dumped them all on the buyers who were buying the glowings at 800-900k hoping to keep me stuck at buying at 1.1. million each, so I made some serious plat (90mill +) with no loss when I wanted to get rid of stock and bring the price down to 600k after 2 months of expansion time had passed.

    This would have been a lot harder to do if everyone that played EQ had a fair advantage to put up a buyer/trader but since so few play the bazaar game , coupled with the fact that most traders only have access to 100 slots to sell, you can easily monopolize/price fix the market in EQ.
  8. Goth Augur

    rich get richer poor get poorer ;)
  9. Triconix Augur

    Buying out competition to protect their margin is called creating a monopoly...fairly sure monopolies are illegal in the states. Inflating prices claimed by the OP creates prices above marginal revenue and price, which lead to excessive profits which lead to buying out of even more competition which lead to even more inflated prices. It's a monopoly. It's not legal in the real world.

    These aren't free market practices. You need competition - lots of it - to have a free market. This is just one person buying any and all possible people trying to get into the business.

    All of you must have failed economics 101 to be claiming this is that!

    However, this isn't the real world /shrug.
  10. Mayfaire Augur

    How can a market be monopolized if one can just go and camp more materials to make more of the product? In theory, the mats could be camped in perpetuity and the offending party who was buying out the Op would eventually run out of either motivation (market flooded with skinspikes) or money.
  11. Triconix Augur

    But people aren't, for various reasons, so the market is monopolized because currently there is only a single seller. And if this seller is going to establish predatory pricing tactics IE buying all the lower costing potions to artificially increase the price at his own discretion, that's a monopoly also. Sure, other sellers may not mind that their potions were all sold and they gained a profit, but this affects the buyers. The only possible way to stop this would be to flood the market with literally thousands of potions (to the point where he cannot buy them all) to undercut his prices and drive him to sell them for less.

    But again, this is a game and that's a lot of effort just to piss in one guy's cheerios.
  12. Arwyn-RoV Augur

    People have the freedom to sell what they want for whatever they want. As long as my bank balance allows I can react to low prices on items I am attempting to run a trade-business in by buying them up and reselling them at my usual prices.

    This isn't a monopoly unless Im the sole survivor in the bazaar, or I've accumulated all the wealth.

    Neither seems to be the case. How would you propose to prevent this behavior if you could? Some sort of inability to purchase if you sell things, or perhaps a way to stop you from selling something at a price that is too low or high? Neither option is rational.

    If the bazaar isn't offering things you want at prices you want to pay, get in there and compete or go get your own things. The latter is a crash course in learning the value of things.
  13. Sheex Goodnight, Springton. There will be no encores.

    Not saying it's harmful in a pixelated world necessarily, but it definitely happens in EQ though.

    Example: on RF there's a pottery mafia essentially, who have been constantly working to keep the prices on the "Golden Idol of (Deity)" - the only decent range item for most players - artificially high. If they see you selling for less in channel they'll approach you and either chastise or invite ye to join. I guess that's "fun" to some people, but I'd be surprised if most of them weren't RMT'ing.
  14. Arwyn-RoV Augur

    Those people have made a mini-game out of making and selling those items and are being defensive and social about maintaining their status quo. If someone comes along and inherits some, or gets given some for a fraction of the materials cost to make them and tries to sell them in the bazaar why wouldn't they buy them up and continue their business?

    The other options are "find a new mini-game to play inside EQ, because market economics turns out to be no fun when your not making money" or "go to the message boards and complain".
  15. Triconix Augur

    A monopoly isn't by definition just a single seller. In law, a monopoly is simply a business entity with enough power to charge overly high prices. What is is doing is a form of a monopoly. He is creating a monopoly because there isn't enough of a substantial substitutes for buyers. In the end, all prices are funneled through this guy.

    What can be done you ask? There's lots that can be done. The better question is does it matter that much? I would

    But even in free market economies, governments/entities can create price ceilings/floors. It's not something out of the ordinary or irrational.

    I don't not agree with you. I'm just playing devils advocate :) It's a position I often like to take. Plus, it's sometimes fun seeing people's feathers get fluffed up!
  16. Matari Augur

    All that needs to be done is to increase access and and availability of items that can be housed at the bazaar. The last change is to effectively communicate the changes to the player base.

    The availability of items post 85 that is reasonably obtainable by casual player is one of the main reason for low retention
  17. Kravitz Augur

    That would work if there wasn't something called the RNG coupled with the fact that people don't have to farm an item 24/7. EQ players spend their time online doing all sorts of things besides camping an item. And is 4000 players per server isn't even a reasonable amount of players to flood the market on specific items like spell runes, when probably on 50% of those players have the means to go out and farm them, and do you think out of those 2000 players all of them are farming spell runes or other high RNG items like TDS rares?

    The best way to farm an item 24/7 is in buyer mode and farming out traders in bazaar and reselling it. I've bought plenty of CotF and TDS rares for 1million each and resold them for 5-10 million each. Gotta love EQ's archaic bazaar system:D

    The only thing about the monopoly you can hold in EQ is you can't monopolize for long periods, 2-3 weeks at the most, this is about what seems to be the case with the current population and about 250 traders per server. About 1-2 months at a time when an expansion comes out. The playing field would be completely different if the system was fair for everyone to sell their goods but it isn't.
  18. Garshok Augur

    You are confusing a free market with a fair market. Nothing prevents someone from offering 1.2 for glowing brinies and selling at 2.0 or under. Others may decide it isn't worth it trying to compete, but they certainly have the option to, and plenty have the plat to. Nothing prevents others from going and farming the product.And as Mayfaire noted, it is not sustainable for the reasons he notes - the distortions he creates can last only so long.

    I don't like it when it happens, but it is not a monopoly.
  19. Garshok Augur

    Many of these temporary market distortions are, IMO, made easier by the relatively small size of the server population and bazaar on most servers.

    It would be interesting to see what would happen if the bazaar was made a cross server entity - that if you put something up for sale, or an order to buy, it would be available on all servers with the same ruleset, perhaps making it more difficult to create price distortions by cornering the market in the short-term.

    I like how EVE has a game economist to try and keep the game economy running. Of course, it is a way different beast thann EQ:
  20. Bigstomp Augur

    While in theory this would maybe work, it'd have some major economy issues early on.
    Even if we ignore FV, lets compare Bristle and Povar.

    I moved from Povar to Bristle a few years back.
    I was astonished to find that everything in the bazaar (and buy lines too) was approx double what it was on povar.
    Needless to say before I transferred my alt over to join me I cleaned out the bazaar with whatever plat I had left on povar.

    Each server has an economy and moving to a central bazaar would really mess up some numbers in some. Imagine you had 1m plat, and were planning to buy some items. Then cross server comes in, and the prices double because the richer/more populated servers are in the game now. Your 1m plat is effectively reduced to 500k plat.