Consider making Banking payout progressive


#1

Right now, Banking pays out $75/level … which is quite helpful early on in the game, but later in the game (especially in mega-galaxies), it fails to scale as this tech isn’t very useful … and in fact, may not be cost effective to transfer. I.e. if you are spending $300 to send someone B20, that extra $75 they’ll get each cycle is basically like paying $40 for Economy.

A proposed solution to make Banking more “interesting” for longer in the game is to make it payout progressively - each level is $50 plus the $10Xlevel. Here’s a chart (sorry about the formatting) showing the various incremental/total payouts for various banking levels using the current and proposed system.

Level Current Proposed (Incremental-Total)
1 75/75 60/60
2 75/150 70/130
3 75/225 80/210
4 75/300 90/300
… and so on …
20 75/1500 250/3100

The advantage of this approach is the payouts are similar early in the game at lower levels, but because they increase with each level, it makes Banking a more viable tech to keep working on (and transferring) later in the game.

Plus this should be a very simple coding change.


An idea to keep Experimentation "interesting" and more balanced
#2

Agreed, Banking becomes progressively less useful as time goes on. It gets to the point that it takes several days to recoup the cost of transferring the tech. The only benefit at that point, is that you cannot lose the income as you lose stars.

Experimentation could also benefit from this type of adjustment. Early in the game, Experimentation is quite powerful. The first couple Cycles, you tend to have 1-4 first Cycle, 2-6 second, maybe 4-8 by the third cycle if you really spend a lot on Science. Level 1 Experimentation gets you 72 points, or several days worth of point to start, down to a day’s worth at 3 Science. Increased levels help keep it in the range of giving you close to a day’s worth of points in the early game.

The later in the game you get, keeping Experimentation levels on par with your other tech has a much smaller impact. It gets to the point where even high levels of Experimentation shave off only a couple of hours worth of research.


#3

I’ve made few suggestions on G+ page regarding Exp and Bank myself, so I support this.

When you buy 300+ econ each production, having 7,5 econ worth in 1 level of banking is waste of research points.
Same with Experimentation. Once you buy 100+ science / day, having 72 points (same as 3 science) from 1 level of experimentaion / day in a random field is also completely worthless.

There were also other suggestions, one of them was that each banking reduces transfer fees.


#4

I like this progressive format better.


#5

Bumping this thread because it really does make sense and the implementation is trivial.


#6

BTW, I see that Jay just added the ability to change the cost for tech transfers (at game creation time) to be $5/15/25/50 per level.

I suggest a progressive option (similar to Banking above) would be nice to have.
I.e. cost to transfer technology is $10 per level and goes UP $10 for each successive level.

So to pass level2, it costs $30 ($10 + $20)
To pass level3, it costs $60 ($10+$20+$30)
To pass level4, it costs $100 ($10+$20+$30+$40)

This makes passing technology a bit more pricey and keeps it more scalable later in the game, especially for mega galaxies with plentiful resources.


#7

I just paid $900 to ship Weapons to my two teammates. I think it’s expensive enough!


#8

Yea, but aren’t you the “Ender” that just got over $17,000 from the latest production cycle … :wink:

Having played some mega-galaxies, my experience is that tech passing is not too difficult early on (because it is cheap), then gets kinda pricey (“man, I could use this tech transfer money for something else”) … and then from about here on out, it becomes increasingly a “who cares” expense because you are just rolling in dough.

Already, most things are a “who cares” expense in mega-galaxies … just tossing out an idea that might make you “feel” it a bit more.


#9

Yes, but I’m also sometimes passing two levels in a cycle - making that 1/10 of my total income!

I actually have found in general (non-mega galaxies) that tech passing is actually harder early on because I’d rather spend the money on Economy. Unless I’m getting Experimentation, Banking or Terraforming, I’ll usually just wait until I have the cash flow.

I don’t think it ever reaches a “who cares” expense. But that’s just me :slight_smile:


#10

Hulk,
Using your progressive option, the tech Matt spent $900 sending to Chris and I, would have cost $4,650 each, or $9,300 total. As he said, there are turns he passes more than one tech, so $18,000 for level 29 and 30 to two allies. That would mean all of his income, most turns, would be tied up just transferring tech. Even our team income could not manage to share all the tech produced on a given cycle.

I think the options Jay added give enough flexibility for more expensive tech trades.

Edit to add.
I have to say, the cumulative cost of tech transfers in our team game continues to surprise me. I’m in charge of the Ender Team checking account, and at the end of a cycle, when I had planned on a major Econ purchase, I’m always shocked at how much tech swaps have ended up eating into our balance.


#11

Weapons is your highest level tech … and you don’t always have two levels to pass per production … but yes, that quite the “sting” to pass tech … which was my point - to somehow make passing tech something you have to really think about and/or balance with other expenditures.

I might have the bar set too high … just trying to think of some way to make it more scalable.


#12

We’ve completely derailed the topic, which was to make banking meaningful past the first few levels. Jay did give us some options including limiting tech to only neighbors, and a range of transfer costs. I think $50 per level is steep enough, as it will really stifle early tech trades, and make things very expensive in the late game without killing tech trading all together, which I feel the suggestion of progressive costs will do.

I’d say $1500 for sending a player lvl 30 weapons is pretty high, especially when I’ve seen Weapons hit over 100 levels in a 64p game.


#13

Sorry folks, I’ve not been ignoring this thread. Just having trouble making time for the forums.

Hulk, I think you’re suggestion is good, and agree we probably should just fix both Banking and Experimentation. I have been holding out hoping that it would be interesting that different techs are interesting at different times but I have a lot of suggestions to fix it.

This is another reason I didn’t really want to increase banking, I just don’t think we need more money in the game at later levels.

We also have Terraforming working against us making everything cheaper.

“Who cares” decisions are a failure in the design.

We want players to think about if they can afford to trade a tech,
Preferably we want players to care about where infrastructure is built.

hrmm… how about we turn the problem around and think about ways to pull money out of the economy so that the banking cash is still interesting.

What about if there was simply a hard limit on the amount of economy you can build at a star? (based on natural resources)

What about if terraforming didn’t reduce the cost of economy?

What about if there was an upkeep for every carrier or ship draining your economy in the large games?

We need things that make for interesting decisions in the late game.

Oh yeah, I still like the Nova Bomb idea that somebody reminded me about. Taking stars out of the galaxy will mess with a players economy.


#14

If you make tech transfers progressively expensive (as I suggested), that actually reduces the amount of money in the game for Infrastructure and I think more than compensates for the increased Banking income (which remains an “interesting” tech to research later into the game) due to it being progressive also.

I.e. in the current team game where the numbers above are being discussed, EnderShadow’s Econ is 1,584 and Banking Level is 15 … so the cash generated from Banking is less than 10% of the total … and that percentage becomes less and less each cycle. My suggestion is an attempt to re-balance those and keeps things scalable … for all the reasons you mention above.

I.e. as they say on the beer commercial, tastes great AND is less filling! :wink:


#15

I don’t know how Hulk plays, that he has “Who Cares” purchases. I know that I specifically calculate what I am buying, and when. Even more so in our team game, where I spend the time to determine what the whole team should be buying even with a combined income of $40k at this point.

I think an upkeep cost for carriers might be the way to go. Figuring a cost based on ships would get crippling very quickly. This is very evident in Subterfuge, where you max out on Drillers within a day, and the defender always has the advantage due to shields. A single player gets an advantage in Generators and require several others to gang up on them.

With carrier upkeep, you can compensate for the upkeep by choosing more efficient routes and limiting your carriers. However, again I worry that the cost will kill early game play.


#16

I find in most games passive money sinks are frustrating and annoying and only seem like bandaid to try and fix an already broken game economy. Therefore I would be against any kind of upkeep costs.

They also make money calculations more complex - right now, I can see at a glance “I have X, I need Y, X > Y, therefore I can buy what I want”, but with upkeep I’d need to think “I have X, it costs Y, upkeep is Z per tick, N ticks till next payday, so thats Y + (N * Z), is that less than Y?”.

Similarly, making terraforming only affect industry and science adds extra complexity just for the sake of being a money sink.

For many games, that extra complexity might be desirable, but I think part of what makes NP fun is its simplicity.

Raising the transfer costs progressively could work, making terraforming progressively less effective might work too.

This may also be adding complexity, so might be a bad idea, but perhaps a selection of (expensive) once-off consumables like the Nova Bomb and less drastic thing like: cloak a star (and its surroundings? maybe the more money you pump in the larger the radius), temporarily increase a star or carriers weapons, temporarily reduce an enemies carrier or stars weapons, scanner ping in distant parts of the galaxy (especially with the new only trade in scanner range rule - temporary but very expensive distant trades…?). I dunno, basically consumable but expensive perk items as a money sink.

The difference is that perk items are seen as a positive thing (I pay money to get a bonus), while upkeep is a negative thing (I pay money to avoid being penalised). Perhaps I read too much “Designing Virtual Worlds” by Richard Bartle, and “Mu’s Unbelievably Long and Disjointed Ramblings About RPG Design:wink:


#17

For a one off. I always liked the idea of scanning pulses, which treat a carrier as a planet for a single hour. Let that long range scout spy on your opponents before it is smashed to bits when it arrives at its destination.


#18

good point!


#19

The major benefit of banking is that it is not associated with any specific star and that income cannot be taken from you without taking every last star you own, and an opponent will gain no benefit from it when taking your stars (unlike Economy which pays $10 each when taking a star). Therefor, it should cost more than economy. It would be nice if Banking scaled, but it should not be equal and certainly not cheaper than economy can be expected to be.

Terraforming is a bit of an issue, and this suggestion may be on the side of “too complicated”, but part of the problem I see with Terraforming is that it benefits all of your stars equally whether you have 5 stars or 200+. What if the Terraforming tech set the Resource limit that is obtainable at each of your stars, but you had to pay to upgrade the resource value of each star individually. Once upgraded, the new resource value is set in the same way as industry or science, and when an enemy captures the star they get the star with the new resource value included (even if their own Terraforming would not have permitted them to upgrade to that level).


#20

What if terraforming only sets the maximum that your stars can be at, but you must then individually upgrade each star to actually get the effect?

This is probably not for NP, but would work in a more complex game: the tech levels are actually just the maximum levels for each of their area, but to get the effect you have to do something else (upgrade your planets, or whatever).

Another idea I had for a one-shot thing, though again, I don’t know if it really fits into the simple gameplay of NP, is cloaking device on your carrier where the cost scales with number of ships, but wile cloaked, the fleet does not appear to the enemy (or shows incorrect ship numbers or something).