High mercantile == buying/selling prices ridiculous low

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Kloppix
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High mercantile == buying/selling prices ridiculous low

Post by Kloppix » 03 Dec 2017, 19:26

This bug was fixed by the Morrowind Code Patch and is not (yet) implemented in OpenMW. As workaround I made a ring with constant drain mercantile to wear when trading. It’s there a better way?

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drummyfish
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Re: High mercantile == buying/selling prices ridiculous low

Post by drummyfish » 03 Dec 2017, 19:41

The issue is already in the bugtracker, but we can discuss it here. Let me take a look at the solution in Morrowind Code Patch.

UPDATE: Someone on bugtracker says MCP hasn't solved it but I'm reading here that it has, so which is true?

UPDATE 2: I can't find the source code for MCP. Is the author trying to fix the closed-source problems with another closed-source? :)

UPDATE 3: OK, I digged something up:
"Merchants should no longer pay less for an item with increasing mercantile skill. The issue was that prices merchants pay, were capped by the price the merchant sells the same item at. The sell price was dipping too low, causing the buy price to go down too. It is now uncapped.It does show the underlying barter mechanics aren't balanced well. To avoid exploitable situations with the barter system all price modifiers (differences from base price) are reduced by 50%. Zero value items are no longer buyable or sellable for 1 septim."
So could we adopt this? Seems like a logical solution.

UPDATE 4: here:

Code: Select all

if selling: x = min(buyTerm, sellTerm)
This seems like the clamping, i.e. the NPC won't buy at higher price than at which it sells?

It's here in the code.

UPDATE 5: I just tried modifying it and it works but actually the solution is stupid as you can make money just by selling and buying back. So if you want the MCP solution mentioned above, replace the line in the code I linked to with

Code: Select all

else x = sellTerm;
But it's actually not good.

So what would a good solution be? It's hard to come up with any. For realistic behavior the mentioned solution could be implemented but the NPC would only either buy or sell to you. If you tried to buy for low and then immediately sell for high, they should get angry at you for obviously wanting to f*ck with them. They could even attack you, which would be ridiculous and fun solution, but probably beyond the scope of the current OpenMW philosophy.

Chris
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Re: High mercantile == buying/selling prices ridiculous low

Post by Chris » 03 Dec 2017, 22:30

drummyfish wrote:
03 Dec 2017, 19:41
UPDATE 5: I just tried modifying it and it works but actually the solution is stupid as you can make money just by selling and buying back. So if you want the MCP solution mentioned above, replace the line in the code I linked to with

Code: Select all

else x = sellTerm;
But it's actually not good.

So what would a good solution be? It's hard to come up with any.
Generally I've seen games deal with this by giving items a "standard price", and you always sell lower than it and always buy higher than it. Better mercantile would improve these sell/buy prices and reduce the disparity, but you can never (or when maxed out can just barely) break even on a buy/sell cycle. By the sounds of it, Morrowind's calculations are completely out of whack, so I don't know if it can be fixed without rebalancing the whole game's economy.
For realistic behavior the mentioned solution could be implemented but the NPC would only either buy or sell to you. If you tried to buy for low and then immediately sell for high, they should get angry at you for obviously wanting to f*ck with them. They could even attack you, which would be ridiculous and fun solution, but probably beyond the scope of the current OpenMW philosophy.
When a trade is refused, an NPC's disposition drops a little bit (continued refusal will drop it more). Though even bringing someone's disposition to 0 won't normally trigger combat. Which makes sense, really. You're dealing with businessmen/women, why would they jump right to murder over a poor offer? At worst, perhaps they'd just refuse to do business with you in the future for a while.

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drummyfish
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Re: High mercantile == buying/selling prices ridiculous low

Post by drummyfish » 03 Dec 2017, 22:43

Chris wrote:
03 Dec 2017, 22:30
Generally I've seen games deal with this by giving items a "standard price", and you always sell lower than it and always buy higher than it. Better mercantile would improve these sell/buy prices and reduce the disparity, but you can never (or when maxed out can just barely) break even on a buy/sell cycle. By the sounds of it, Morrowind's calculations are completely out of whack, so I don't know if it can be fixed without rebalancing the whole game's economy.
Yes, I mean what's the solution that involves the least changes against the original? Obviously redesigning the whole economy is work for modders, or post 1.0 work at least.
Chris wrote:
03 Dec 2017, 22:30
When a trade is refused, an NPC's disposition drops a little bit (continued refusal will drop it more). Though even bringing someone's disposition to 0 won't normally trigger combat. Which makes sense, really. You're dealing with businessmen/women, why would they jump right to murder over a poor offer? At worst, perhaps they'd just refuse to do business with you in the future for a while.
Sure, I was joking a bit, it would be funny though if there were short-tempered NPCs. Imagine an orc from whom you buy a dagger for 10 and immediately try to sell him the very same dagger for 20, he just gets mad and smashes you.

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AnyOldName3
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Re: High mercantile == buying/selling prices ridiculous low

Post by AnyOldName3 » 04 Dec 2017, 00:02

Fallout 1 lets you make a bunch of money by repeated buying and selling once you have high enough skills. I abused the crap out of that system but justified it to myself by pretending that I was just incredibly convincing.

The best solution long-term in my mind is to give everything a base price and then have buying and selling prices tend towards that value as the associated skills increase. This almost certainly would require modder attention, though.

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