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Immortal

Points of note: Arguments against calling the Virtual Universe “gambling” or “casino”.

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Points of note: Arguments against calling this Virtual Universe “gambling”. Or “casino”.
I am going to give my points of view here as I feel would not be given the attention they deserve if they were not related.

I see many people that make the connection “losing money=gambling”
If this is true, are you gambling when you fill your car up with petrol? Yes. – you are assuming that petrol will aid your car. You are assuming that petrol will perform the function you expect it.
If this is true, when buy a sandwich combination you’ve never tried, are you gambling? Yes. What if you don’t like it, or it makes you sick? You just lost money! Gambling! Maybe you purposefully eat more of it to make yourself even more sick, then file a court case against the sandwich company. Gamble!
Spending time at work: gamble! You are gambling every week by going to work expecting to get paid. What if they go bankrupt? You just lost time + money because you didn’t work for some other company. In fact you’re gambling

Yes they seem to be somewhat silly examples, but I think they demonstrate the point on. If you consider every action in life to be a gamble, it loses it’s meaning.

This is one reason why I consider the ‘g-word’ to be completely dirty and inappropriate when referring to a virtual universe. The difference between this and other online pastimes is ... you can actually get something material back at the end of the day.

Let’s say you do not think the above arguments against EU g-wordism labelling are addressing the issue. Let’s say that you consider a short-sighted money-in money-out situation to be a valid standpoint.

EU, to me, is primarily an RPG. Let’s compare then to other types of RPGs
Single player RPG (or in fact, any game). Cost $100. Will last, on average, about 3 days. So ...you just blew $100. You can’t take it back to the store and exchange it (unless you are unethical)
Other online RPG’s : Subscription fee $20. You never see that $20 again. There are no other options than to obey the in-game rules of skilling. Avatars that have been worked on for six months *might* be sold for $300. And there is no guarantee of sale. So for 6months life cycle...$300. $50 a month... 3 hours afk work/month for the average person. So the overall effectiveness is ? Zero. So what would be the point playing? Someone asks what you did for 6 months? “Nothing” You’ve maxed out the character already. There is nowhere to go, inflation is rampant in such games. Currency meaningless.






Why? Because the way returns are generated, you get SIGNIFICANTLY MORE than what you put in. “So???!?!?” You ask naively, almost shouting.
Think about this: If every person got 110% return, every time they did something, how much more do they have at the end of the day?
“10%!!!!” You say without thinking. How did you come by that conclusion?
So say you have 1000 coins, and the world you are looting has 1000000 coins. You own 0.1% of all coins.
You loot 110%, now you have 1100 coins. I profited 10%!
No, you didn’t. What’s you total value? The world just got 10% in the same time. The world now has 1100000 coins. You still have 0.1% worth! So you gained NOTHING.

Do the same in EU. You might break even @ 100% return. You gain skills. They are sold for markup. Probably end up being 50 coins for the same hunt. So you gained 50 coins. It’s not that visible though –I bet you don’t do skill scan after every hunt either.

In levelling up, you become more proficient at hunting, your mining abilities allow you to use higher level finders that can search deeper where rarer ores lie, in crafting there are two levelling factors: quality of BP’s and skills to click the bp. Then there are activities such as coloring & texturizing that for all economic intents and purposes, have zero gain bar the skills associated with them.
Levelling up in all of these activities reduce the cost of doing that activity in the future. Find me one ‘casino’ where the more you sit at the machine, the less ‘money’ you have to put ‘in’, and get the same return. Bottom line, you will never find such a place. The difference with EU is, as you progress, the amount you put in starts being outweighed by the amount of return. Sometimes it’s hard to notice this because there are an awful lot of overheads if you are an intense hunter. Fap, Armor repair, gun decay, the list goes on. It is understandable why people give up too soon. EU is not about having the best equipment and hunting the biggest mobs. It’s about playing within your means. Matching the weapon to the mob, the finder to the ore, or the synergy of the craft.

Investment
Try walking into a casino, and ask to buy shares. Ask to ‘buy’ a machine that you can then use, with the hope that the machine will increase in value over time.. I don’t think the laughter will have died by the time you’ve crawled back to your car and smothered yourself with potato chips. There are ways to generate income in the universe that do not require you do be proficient in anything but know-how. This is where smart resellers come in. Resellers themselves feed off the greed, impatience, stupidity or status grabbed-ness of others. Take items with no market history for example: long time successful resellers don’t touch them. Items WITH market history though, they get snapped up as quickly and for as low cost as possible.

Items
Find me a casino that gives out prizes that make it cost less for ‘slotting’, or reduce the amount of time needed to continue ‘slotting’. Or one where another ‘fellow slotter’ would be willing to pay their yearly slot-wage to get said prize, even if it might be of low real-world value.

Devil’s Advocating my own argument
Recently a thread was started” “i clicked XXX BP with 9 fails in a row. It’s worse than vegas”
Well this should be the clincher, shouldn’t it? In a casino, you would expect some return. If this isn’t an indication enough that EU is clearly NOT a casino if it gives so many fails in a row. It really is beyond me how a high level crafter can not understand their own profession? Did they not test the loot on the machine they were using to make sure they would get some return? If after 3 fails why did they not stop? That is certainly the advice professional gamblers would use. “Three fails in a row and you leave”. We know EU is cyclical...sometimes there are are extremely good loot periods, sometimes bad, sometimes a tick on Chance of success craft bar won’t work for 20 clicks, and sometimes the one next to it works as many times in a row. It does amaze me how long time players have not yet learnt to read loot patterns. I guess using autoclickers while afk does have it’s disadvantages.
I have had similar fails. Sweating. Last night (I was tired of poor loots) I sweated a Bristlehog Old. For half an hour (or was it more?). The first 15 or so tries were FAILS. To anyone, this should be an indication it is not regular chance ( i.e. 1 in X tries succeeds) to loot or to sweat or to craft or to mine, it is one of timing, it is one of serendipity and one of contingency. Timing won’t get you anywhere in a casino, except a boot out the front door.

“But I had to pay money” argument etc
You put money into the game. You are making an investment. For this investment, MindArk gives you a pre-agreed conversion rate of PED. What you do in the game from then on is up to how intensely you want to play, or what you want to achieve. If you want to continue hunting with stupidly low economy weapons, you are allowed. If you want to continue hunting crap looting mobs, you are allowed. If you are going to craft very riskily on condition knowing full well you get a better average return on quantity, don’t blame anyone but yourself if you fail in that goal. You(presumably) have tested the system and know how it works.

EU rewards those who are persistent. A casino doesn’t. The intensity of ingame skill-time an avatar needs to have clocked before they realise this reward is what is unpredictable, and that is what makes it exciting.
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  1. thoreau's Avatar
    When you buy gas - you get exactly what you expect. Buying gas is not gambling. If you pay for 20 liters of gas - you get 20 liters of gas. Buying gas is not similar to playing EU.

    The other arguments are not very good either.

    With regards to other games - the currency is not worthless. Simply go to IGE.com and you will see the cash value of their currency. In addition, you can check out a site where Everquest 2 players can sell their earned coin. Even EU has inflation.

    You also don't understand the concept of maxing out a character in a traditional MMO. While it is true you can achieve max level in a month or two - you can continue to further progress you character in many way.

    Raiding dungeons is one way character progression occurs. This is similar to killing the same mob over and over again in EU hoping to get a specific uber item. Also, players in those games further develop their character by upgrading items like jewelry, spells, etc. It would be rare to find a person who has maxed out a character and gear in less than a year. More likely 2 years. And then when that happens the player simply creates a new class of character and experiences the game in a new way.

    With regards to become more proficient and 'leveling' up - this occurs in those games too. By crafting or looting higher level skills you become more proficient. Hard core games measure this as DPS or damage per second. The more efficient you are the more damage per second. And in those games players work on efficiency and proficiency.

    EU is gambling - just like a casino. Here is why:

    You walk into a casino. You log into Entropia.

    You give the casino dollars and they give you chips. You give Entropia dollars and it gives you PEDs.

    In Entropia you must take an additional step of exchanging PEDs for ammo.

    In the casino you put the chips in the machine. In Entropia you shoot the ammo at the mob.

    In a casino sometimes you win but usually you lose. In Entropia sometimes you win but usually you lose.

    Now in the casino you can learn strategy. Maybe you try a different game and you notice patterns. Also, in Entropia you can learn strategy and sometimes you try a differentmob and notice patterns.

    As your knowledge of the games in a casino increases you are more likely to lose less. As your knowledge of the mobs increases in Entropia you are more likely to lose less.

    Casinos use bright lights and loud sounds to motivate players to spend more. Entropia uses swirlies and music to motivate players to spend more.

    If you have chips left over in a casino you can exchange them back for dollars. If you have PEDs left over in Entropia you can exchange them for dollars.

    There is no doubt that playing Entropia is exactly like playing poker or blackjack or slots in a casino. In both you can use skills or play recklessly. Strategy can help you minimize losses but in both winning is not guaranteed. Entropia is a casino. They just make it look like a MMO.
  2. Immortal's Avatar
    I find it curious you addressed only few of the points of arguments. Yes they were poor. Poor examples for what I consider poorly thought out arguments. I see many people blindly state "oh it' is myeh myeh myeh" Yet to me the come across uneducated. They don't support this viewpoint with hard facts, and tend to ignore the blindingly obvious.

    I think this comes down to what either of us think EU is about. I see EU as a great prospect for investment. You don't. What is the difference? How is it different from other RPG's, except that the return you get averages at 100%, and not 110, 150%?

    Stockmarket: Gamblers use the stockmarket, but there are smart people too.

    For the purposes of showing perspective, I am going to reword your own statements, replacing the parables to stockmarket

    You seem to have only focused on hunting to support your arguments. I don't know why, EU is far broader than a hackemslash, and mining/hunting/crafting + even the coloring/texturizing and skilling of a character. That's four factors that are being ignored to support an argument, but I won't go further into that as I feel it detracts from the conversation at this time.

    EU is gambling - just like the stockmarket.
    In the stockmarket you invest in shares. In Entropia you shoot the ammo at the mob.

    In the stockmarket sometimes you win but usually you lose. In Entropia sometimes you win but usually you lose. [edit: i guess who it is using the stockmarket]

    Now in the stockmarket you can learn strategy. Maybe you try a different market and you notice patterns. Also, in Entropia you can learn strategy and sometimes you try a differentmob and notice patterns.

    As your knowledge of the stockmarket increases you are more likely to lose less. As your knowledge of the mobs increases in Entropia you are more likely to lose less.

    Stockmarket has bright lights and loud sounds (and pretty graphs). Entropia uses swirlies and music(but you have to make your own graphs).

    If you have shares leftover you can exchange them back for dollars. If you have PEDs left over in Entropia you can exchange them for dollars.

    There is no doubt that playing Entropia is exactly like floating money on the stockmarket. In both you can use skills or play recklessly. Strategy can help you minimize losses but in both winning is not guaranteed. Entropia is a a stockmarket. They just make it look like a MMO.

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