Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Dev Blog: The price of change

We're hoping to broadly maintain the current balance of manufacturing between hisec, lowsec, nullsec and w-space with these changes.  Nullsec manufacture will receive additional buffs later. (Foo Comment - and others: Really?  What is that you are smoking?  Can I have some?)
This is post 2 of 2 today, the first one relating to the last dev post on research.  All of my blog posts relating to these changes can be found at 'Summer' 2014 release

We have a new formula to learn : Run cost = (price of output) * square root(fraction of global job hours) * (team cost) * (facility reduction) * (starbase reduction) * 0.99^(hours already run) * (FW reduction) * (outpost upgrade reduction)

CCP mockup image from the dev blog.  All numbers are placeholders

Base cost will be the same everywhere in a given system. (Foo note: Dont bother puting POS up in busy systems)

Price of output is based on killmail value (also used in bounty/fw payouts).

For the purpose of pricing jobs, blueprints will be assumed to be 2% of whatever they build (Foo: Huh?)

Fraction of job hours is a 28 day rolling average; Square root is to increase spread between busy and empty systems.

Team costs will modify this. TBA.  (Foo comment: I assume we will get some benefit out of this but no idea what yet)

Facility reduction NPC stations will have a range of multipliers between 0.95 and 0.98
Building things in Nonni will have a mulitpler of 0.48, halving this cost (Foo question: Why?)

Hours already run Multi runs get a small discount

FW reduction/ Outpost upgrade reduction: upgrades give a beneficial cost multiplier instead of a number of slots.

For each level of FW upgrade in a system, you'll get an additional 0.9x multiplier to job prices for manufacturing and industry, so level 5 gives a 0.59049x multiplier on top of everything else.
For each previously-slot-improving outpost research upgrade, you'll similarly get a 0.9x multiplier to research job prices.

 (Foo note: this looks like a better buff for FW at least)

Taxes : NPC stations have 10% tax.  Player structures might be able to have corp tax. (Foo note: without this tax, it will be hard to justify POS based manufacture corps.  Not impossible, just hard)

Wrap up: Worst system for manufacture is 15% in Saisio. Jita currently is 4%
The new job installation pricing system is fundamental and takes into consideration many things such as Factional Warfare bonus, discounts from having multiple stations in the system, discounts on multiple runs and more.

Please all read CCP Greyscale's latest blog The Price of Change!

Feedback, constructive discussions and comments are most welcome here. Please remember that this is a big step for Industry in New Eden and that your constructive feedback counts and can make a difference!
Greyscale, these numbers are fascinating! However many people may still fear nullsec will pay low costs while highsec me I'll be high everywhere! Can you post numbers on how many systems in highsec see no activity at all so as to demonstrate how much people may he able to find low cost operating locations? (Foo note: Thanks mynna for the leading question)
Q: I do not understand the pricing for research: What's the output price?
A: The "output price" where the output is a blueprint is treated as being 2% of the value of whatever the blueprint produces. It's buried in a paragraph halfway down, that probably could've been clearer.

Q: mynna's question on low cost systems
A: As it happens, I have those numbers to hand :)

In the snapshot the examples are based on, 38.9% of hisec systems have no activity at all.

We're almost certainly going to introduce a minimum activity "cap" so prices don't become 0, but it's looking like being somewhere around 0.0001% of global activity.

In this snapshot, 754 of the 1212 hisec systems have any activity at all, and will be floored at the minimum activity cap, another 7 hisec systems have a non-zero amount of activity that's still below the cap. Another 127 systems are below 1% of build cost, 179 are between 1% and 2%, 187 between 2% and 3%, 110 between 3% and 4%, 74 between 4% and 5%, leaving the remaining 70 above 5%.

Q: Those with offices have an advantage?
A: Some people will get lucky on offices; that's just the luck of the draw and we aren't planning on any "compensation" there. Generally though, the systems that are good for building after the change tended to be good for building before the change.

Q: Why use lowsec?
A: Low sec uses the same fee structure as hisec, yes. Well-positioned lowsec systems (eg near Jita) will, we expect, be less popular than nearby hisec systems, and thus cheaper. This doesn't require any special consideration.

Q: When I have 2 100 run BPC's will the overtime bonus be cumulative?
A: The over-time bonus is just per job; two separate BPCs require two separate jobs.

Q: Nullsec bonuses so small?  Trouble understanding the numbers (Foo note: so am I at first glance, but I will read and digest slowly)
A:  Just out of interest, why? AFAIK this is the first solid info we've given on how the pricing will work, the first time we've mentioned nullsec at all, and there's a paragraph right at the top saying "we're not trying to change the hisec/nullsec balance". Where's the assumption we were going to incentivize nullsec coming from?

A: We're probably revisiting the starbase numbers in the near future, which should alleviate at least some of this concern I hope.

Q: For research upgrades: do both invention and research slots get pooled (so 1x research slot upgrade 1x invention slot upgrade = .81 modifier for both types of jobs) or is it individual (1x and 1x means .9 modifier for both)?
A:  Yes, they should be pooled, as we're only tracking a single research multiplier.

Q: So the taxes introduced for jobs, are they affected by the skills based around tax reductions?
A: Probably not in the initial release, we might revisit this though.

A:  Starbases are either immune to, or have owner-set, taxes, so that's 10% reduced job installation cost right off the bat.

We are looking at various bonuses to starbase structures to give them some oomph.

We are looking at the Hyasyoda lab to make sure it's still useful.

We would *like* to have bonuses for having multiple labs/assembly arrays at the same tower, but it may not be feasible immediately due to the somewhat arcane state of the starbase code.

Q: Will system modifiers be available as universe map overlays?
A: We're working on good solutions for conveying this sort of information, yes :)

Q:  Are you guys planning to add factory services to every station if the idea is to be able to "spread" the manufacturing load across the cluster?
A:  Not immediately, no, although if we find it's a balance problem we may change this.

Q:  NPC tax is 10%, but of what?
A: It's a 1.1x multiplier at the end of the formula, so 10% of the job fees.
A:  We're scaling higher levels of ME/TE research based on how much longer they take than level 1 (linear relationship). High levels on high-rank blueprints may cost *large* amounts of money, and you may want to shop around extensively before committing one of those.
Q: Related question: how is this formula resolving the market value of rarely sold (e.g. components) items and never sold (supercaps)? Is it using market prices or is it doing a sort of 'base cost' off the minerals?
A: It will likely be per-run, so a 50-run copy becomes 100%, yes. Research costs scale at higher levels though, so it probably swings back a bit there.

Market costs are all done using the system that is used for killmail pricing (and thus used for FW LP payouts), which should have reasonable values for most things already. Some newer items aren't being properly calculated on TQ right now, but we're fixing that.
It's not going to break the cost calculations. The valuation for unstable items like the ones you mention is very conservative, but that's fine. It might not show very accurate values for these items, but they will have values that make sense for the industry cost calculation. And manipulating the price on the 'real' market will only have minimal effect.
You will be able to compare "relative" cost of each industry facility in the region. Have a look here:
Q:  Could you elaborate more about the ME skill change?
A: We've not 100% pinned this down yet, it's on my to-do list :)

A: Every station gives some level of discount.

I'll have a look at invention BPC costs

I believe the existing speed multipliers for starbase structures are still in place, Ytterbium is looking at them atm.

A: All stations get the cost bonuses from all stations in the system, it's not a per-station thing.

A: The full 5% bonus is a *lot* of money, and in any case is somewhat overshadowed currently by the Minmatar reprocessing bonus. We're not super-concerned about the balance here just yet.

I'll see what can be done about the standings.

I believe industry implants should still work, yes.

A: Jita would hit 10% of build cost aaaat... somewhere around 2% of global activity. It's at 0.39% in the snapshot I have. 5x increase in job hours would do it. 15% is around 5%, 20% is at 8%.

A: WORKFORCE COSTS, ie job installation costs, are paid at starbases. This is not a "tax", it's the cost of labor, which goes up in busy systems as you'd expect.

TAXES, the additional 1.1x multiplier to your workforce costs, are not paid at starbases.
A: We don't have major concerns in going beyond "perfect" ME any more, provided we don't end up giving more than 50% discount and taking it below the reprocessing cap. So, yes, you can get "super-perfect" production with this system.
Q: Currently outpost owners have the ability to restrict some or all of the slots to ensure they're open for corp projects.
A: We are still looking at this actually, but yes there will be the ability to set some restrictions per facility instead of per assembly line which you used to do.

Q: some items are not being priced properly
A: It should be noted that we don't desperately care whether the numbers are "accurate", so long as they're a) the right order of magnitude and b) not easy to manipulate up and down by large amounts. So long as they stay consistent, everyone building that product has the same base cost so there's a level playing field.

A: We were originally looking at a volume-based system, but IIRC we decided there were too many weird relationships for it to really make sense.
It's not going to break the cost calculations. The valuation for unstable items like the ones you mention is very conservative, but that's fine. It might not show very accurate values for these items, but they will have values that make sense for the industry cost calculation. And manipulating the price on the 'real' market will only have minimal effect.

As with all these posts, I point to the all the dev items.  For this one,


  1. "Facility reduction NPC stations will have a range of multipliers between 0.95 and 0.98
    Building things in Nonni will have a mulitpler of 0.48, halving this cost (Foo question: Why?) "

    Because Nonni has a lot of stations, enough so that all those .95's and .98's multiply together to .48

  2. The 2% for blueprints was for research. The base cost will be 2% of the value of the product of the blueprint cf. 100% for manufacturing.


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