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Reader Comments (28)

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 8:08AM Matix said

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I am for two reasons:

!) First is roleplay immersion. An example would be the Sporeloks in WOW, who take mushrooms for payment rather than gold for many of their more valuable baubles. Sure, gold is money, but in the game world what do mushroom people want with inedible metal?!

2) By having alternate currencies it forces you to go through certain content. Yeah, that's pretty much grinding, but I'd really rather have people earn their honor gear through work than just placing down gold and buying it. >.<


HAVING SAID THAT, it does help if you can convert those old currencies into different ones/money. An example is in WOW when old tokens were upgraded to the newer ones, converted to gold, or honor points. This keeps me from having a cluttered up bag and ensures these alternative currencies remain relevant.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:26AM Silverangel said

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@Matix Agree totally with the immersion and roleplay angle, and that was my first thought also, but most devs don't seem to want to bother or see the value. LotRO's currency boils down to Lothlorian thingies and Moria thingies, and in Rift the stuff bonks your head with a flash of light and a ding after a battle. The currencies are just nominal and functional for game design, nothing more, which is less than they could be.
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Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:36AM Malagarr said

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@Matix

Agreed on all accounts. Alternative currencies are a good thing, but having a bunch of currency you never use left stuck either in your bags or even just on a tab on your character sheet is a nuisance. There needs to be a way to convert all types of currency into something worthwhile. Even if it's just trading it out for a small amount of gold.

Of course, if game developers continued to utilize all of the currencies they incorporated by adding new items to these types of faction vendors, that would be even better. But said items would have to be of high enough quality to get end game players to want them. Imagine, if you will, if said sporelocks would accept, say, 50-100 mushrooms along with a token from a heroic dungeon in exchange for somethin worth using at lvl 85. Require a given faction rating (maybe honored, revered, whatever) and now you have reason for players to go back and interact with a long forgotten faction.

Just my two copper. =)
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Posted: Apr 6th 2011 8:19AM xBludx said

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Or instead of alternative tokens, you just get rep rewards, so no clutter.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 8:20AM phatbhuda said

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I'm not a fan of the 15 different standard currencies in Star Trek Online.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:00AM Eamil said

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@phatbhuda Yeah, I'm not against the idea but STO takes it too far.
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Posted: Apr 6th 2011 11:02AM mysecretid said

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@phatbhuda @eamil

STO's lead dev, Daniel Stahl, has been saying for a while now that they realize the currencies have gotten out of hand, and that they plan to simplify them as soon as possible. Check the last couple of Engineering Reports on the game's website for further details.
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Posted: Apr 6th 2011 11:21AM phatbhuda said

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@mysecretid Yup. I'll be happy when they make those changes. I'm looking forward to many of the updates in the Engineering reports.

It doesn't change the fact that at some point, some game designer thought it'd be a good idea to have 15 incompatible different currencies in the game. LOL
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Posted: Apr 6th 2011 8:32AM Greyhame said

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It can be bad if there are too many, but for the most part I'm in favour. They promote whichever task the gear is suppose to be for. But they can get very grindy and without a lot of items you can get that you need with them pretty much, eventually, removes the desire to get them since you've done that thing already so many times.

I also tend to prefer it to random loot since you know what you need to get, and how much work you need to work towards it as opposed to hoping that your luck will let you see the item you want and then win it.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:04AM delphinius81 said

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If you are going to have more than the standard coin currency, you better have a barter wallet ready to go as well.

In general, I don't mind alternate currencies as they ensure the "good" rewards are for the people that have earned them. While it is annoying that you can't get your L10 master crafter the uber rep-recipe, it is good for the game in the long run.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:25AM goldenhornet said

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Haha, are you deliberately trying to wind up the City of Heroes community today? It's not like we didn't have enough types of currency in the game already, Issue 20 just dumped a load more on us.

http://boards.cityofheroes.com/showthread.php?t=257154

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:26AM DarkWalker said

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I'm in favor of alternate currency if both.

- It's just a few kinds of currency, perhaps 5 for the whole game, with old currencies being consolidated whenever a new one is introduced (or wiped out, like short term currency for seasonal events).

- They don't clutter the bags. Game wallets FTW.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:28AM ChongShin said

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If everything uses the same currency then you need more of that currency for everything. This forces the developers to put in more of that currency so that players can afford the various things, which in turn runs the risk of inflating the price of common items in the auction house (making the price of rare loot on the AH crazy high).

Not a happy spiral of events.

You don't necessarily need a barter bag. Look at Rift, for example. There's a currency window that you can look at if you want, but you don't really need to. The planar merchants window shows your total number of relevant currency when you go to buy something.

If it simply used platinum for the planar gear then we would have fewer people taking part in the rift and invasion events. We would also have more people turning to gold sellers so that they could quickly buy the gear without earning it. Both of those situations are not at all healthy for the community.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:32AM Irem said

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I like them when they have a definite purpose and weren't obviously just put in because the developers had no idea what else to do. When you're dealing with something like eight different tiers of currency, or you need two or more separate kinds to buy a single item, or things have gotten so convoluted that there needs to be an NPC currency exchanger just to allow people to spend the token-bits they've gotten on the reward they want, it's too much. Done well, though, it's a way to allow players to work toward a special reward without allowing those rich enough to just throw gold, plat, or gil at it.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:35AM Dumac said

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Im thinking of an MMO with a single currency, XP or lets rename it to uh, energy. You gain energy by playing, and you can spend it on anything you want. You don't level up automatically, you spend energy to level up. You spend it to craft, level up an ablity, trade with a player, loot a dead player, travel, everything that has a cost.

Of course it would promote obsessive farming and grinding and enable those who purchase "gold" from sellers to buy power, but it would be interesting to see what effect it would have on gameplay. You'd have to balance it on your own depending on what you want which would be interesting, and developers would be able to funnel players into content by adjusting rates at which energy is gained there.

Or it would just suck. :)

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 9:51AM The Ogre said

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Alternative Currencies = Good.
Alternative Currencies Without Dedicated Storage = Bad.

ie, currency tokens that take up your inventory space instead of having their own counter along side the regular currency sucks. Such as the 36 Reward Trophies in Guild Wars you use at the various Quartermaster NPCs in different regions of the game (fortunately, 16 of those tend to be used immediately after obtaining, or by the end of the special event they're generated from - but that's still an entire storage tab you have to use to keep 'em)

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 10:04AM Bottleskup said

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I didn't mind void shards in EQ2 with the TSO expac, it wasnt much to store and EQ2 has plenty storage options and inventory space.

LOTRO though...that almost drove me insane with all the different skirmish and dungeon tokens coming from every angle, and youre supposed to remember what theyre all for and what they can exchange to and blah blah blah. I know theres a barter wallet now, but there wasn't always, and it made me want to kill.

Overall, I dont mind them, but don't make too many of them, give them dedicated storage, or just a counter, ie virtual storage, so we dont have to carry everything at once and feel clusterfucked.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 10:16AM Vinegar Ninja said

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That was (and still is) my biggest beef with LotRO, their bags are tiny, they give you a million items, and before the barter wallet? You had to lug around all your goddamn tokens you got from skirmishes which competed. They really need to overhaul the inventory system in that game.

Posted: Apr 6th 2011 10:54AM demonlife said

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@Vinegar Ninja
The wallet is a nice addition, unfortunately it only holds some forms of marks and tokens. Many still end up in your inventory. And they keep adding more types with every update.
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Posted: Apr 6th 2011 11:19AM phatbhuda said

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Yup. I'll be happy when they make those changes. I'm looking forward to many of the updates in the Engineering reports.

It doesn't change the fact that at some point, some game designer thought it'd be a good idea to have 15 incompatible different currencies in the game. LOL
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