Friday, September 5, 2014

Entropia Universe (Part Five)

Value In Your Hands
Now the reason why I'm talking about this first before even touching on the gameplay is'll need to be able to discern the value of something. Else, how the heck are you even gonna be able to conduct trades with others once you start playing the game?

This is especially so since the game deals with real money and you wouldn't want to shortchange yourself now would you?

Anyway, to learn about the value of something, one will need to know about the "Currency" used in Entropia Universe, about "Trade Terminal Value" (TT Value) and about "Markup".

PEDs, PECs and What???
First, let's talk about the currency and its denominations...

Within the game, there's generally two forms of currency that players would regularly use for trades. The "Project Entropia Dollar" (PED) and the "Project Entropia Cents" (PEC).
Entropia Universe - Currency
As you can see above, the difference between the two of them is merely just their visual colors (one's golden while the other's silverish). However, their "TT Values" are vastly different (one's 1.00 PED while the other's 0.01 PED).

And since you already know that 1 USD is equal to 10 PEDs, and 0.10 USD is equal to 1 PED, I doubt I'll need to tell you which one's of more value right? But I've let's head back on topic.
Entropia Universe - PED Card
Next, we have the "PED Card"...our virtual wallet within this game. This card is always found within the first tab of our inventory and is used to materialize PEDs and PECs from within our account, a mere number, into a physical, solid form that we can use for trades.
Entropia Universe - Extraction Window
To do so, all we need to do is right click on the PED card and select the "Extract PED/PEC" option. You will then be shown a tiny window with some "Up" and "Down" arrows. From there onwards, its just a matter of selecting the right amount to extract and your done.

Either use the arrows to choose the amount you wish to extract or use your numpad to type in the amount. Do note, however, that values before the "decimal point" will be extracted in the form of PEDs while values after will be extracted in the form of PECs.

Entropia Universe - A Hundred PECsEntropia Universe - Dropping 100 PECs into PED Card
After materialization, the PEDs and PECs can be handled in just the same way as "stackables". You can split them, merge them or drag and drop them into the PED card to dematerialize it back into a numerical value in your account.

But that is as far as it goes...

Although 1 PED holds the same value as 100 PECs, it cannot be broken down into PECs directly as it is (without going through the PED card). Likewise, merging PECs into a stack of 100 PECs WILL NOT change it into 1 PED. They are fundamentally just like a regular "stackable item". An orange cannot simply change into an apple regardless of how many oranges you stack together, now can it?

Now that you know what PEDs and PECs are, let's take it up a notch and talk about denominations that are EVEN SMALLER than a PEC.

Your Kidding Right?

Hell no. I'm serious...

Entropia Universe - AmmunitionEntropia Universe - Sweat Fruit Fragment Stone
Individually, the TT Values of these items may appear to look 0.00 PEDs, but if you stack enough of them together, you will eventually start to see that they are actually worth something.
  • The 0.01 PECkers
    Things that fall into this category are typically your ammunition of all kinds. Explosive Projectiles, Weapon Cells, BLP Packs and Synthetic Mind Essence.
    Stacking 100 of these together will show up to be worth 1 PEC of TT Value. Hence individually, they are calculated to be worth 0.01 PEC each.
  • The 0.001 PECkers
    Things that fall into this category are Vibrant Sweat, Fruits (Bombardo, Caroot, Haimoros, Papplon), Fragments (Blazar, Nova) and Natural Stones (Brukite, Nissit, Kaldon, Rutol, Sopur, Trutun). There may be others out there, but these are the general ones that you will often encounter across the planets.
    Stacking 1000 of these together will show up to be worth 1 PEC of TT Value. Hence individually, they are calculated to be worth 0.001 PEC each.

Building upon your previous concepts of PEDs and PECs, of TT Values, 0.01 PECs and 0.001 PECs, let's go into something even more mathematical. Markup.
Entropia Universe - Markup
Within this game, there are two forms of "Markup" that you will encounter. And the easiest place with which you will find them is actually at the "Auctioneer" (like as shown above).
  • The TT+Markup
    With the "TT+Markup", what we're actually doing is to sell something for a total sum of its "Trade Terminal Value" (of the item) PLUS the "Markup" (we're charging).

    For instance, if I have something with a TT Value of 0.01 PEDs and I say that I'm selling it for "TT+1.99", this means that if you as a player wants to buy that item from me, you will have to pay me a total of 2.00 PEDs (0.01+1.99).
    This form of markup calling is usually meant for "Non-stackables" (items that are singular and cannot be stacked together) as well as "Unlimited" items. However, with the advent of "Calypso Land Deeds", certain forms of stackables (esp. deeds) are now also found to be using this version of marking up.
  • The Markup As A Percentage
    For "Markup As A Percentage", what we're doing is to sell something at a percentage of the item's TT Value.

    For instance, if I have something with a TT Value of 0.01 PEDs and I say that I'm selling it for "200%", this means that if you as a player wants to buy that item from me, you will have to pay me a total of 0.02 PEDs (0.01x200%).
    This form of markup calling is usually meant for "Stackables" (items that can be stacked together) as well as "Limited" items.

An Item's Value you've just learnt about PEDs and PECs, about TT Value and about Markup...but this still doesn't tell you one bit about the value of an item now does it? How will you know what is the value of an item that your holding?

Well hold your horses...we'll be getting into that right now.
Entropia Universe - Bukin's Blade Market ValueEntropia Universe - Herman ARK-0 (L) Market Value
Typically, if you right click on an item...any item so long as its auctionable (able to be put up on auction via the auctioneer), you should ought to see an option called "Market Value".

For items which aren't and do not have this option, you will just have to rely upon yourself, other players and/or infer its market value from other similar stat items or products which may require this item as a part of its ingredients.

Upon opening it, you will see a small window with the item's average daily, weekly, monthly, yearly and decade info for sales and markup.

And if you click on the tiny buttons found beside the "Sales" column, you will bring out their respective markup history graphs.

Now that's all fine and dandy, but how do I read it?

Usually, if your just the typical gamer who doesn't want to rack his/her brains on the issue, just looking at the info in the small window will be sufficient.
  • Period
    Tells you which period the data samples were taken and calculated from. ("Day" means for that day, "Week" is for the past week, "Month" is for the past month and so on and so forth.)
  • Markup
    Tells you the AVERAGED markup of the item (for that period).
  • Sales
    Tells you the quantity of the item sold for that period if its a non-stackable or unlimited item. Else, it will tell you the Total (Sum) TT Value of the item sold for that period.
  • Tier
    Usually available only for items that can be "tiered", this option allows you to check the markup histories between the different tiers of that item (from Tier 0 to Tier 10).
However, if your the brainy or cautious type, or if the sales and/or markup is suspiciously weird to you, then its recommended that you look into the details just to be on the safe side.

Yes...its not unheard of for devious people to attempt to "manipulate" the information provided by this "Market Value" as to misguide others about the "actual value" of an item. However, this is typically only performed upon items that are non-stackable and in low available quantities (since its often easier to manipulate the prices of such an item).

A word of caution. Performance of such a deed is "frowned upon" by the game developers as well as the game's community. And it is still unknown (at least to me) as to whether actions will be dealt upon the perpetrators of such a deed.

But sometimes though, the sudden fluctuation in markup of an item might be valid and due to changes in circumstances (perhaps some VU changes, periodic event cycles or something like that). Hence, the best cause of action is still to check the markup history graphs and decide for yourself.

Anyway, to understand how to read the graph, let us take a look at the following example.
Entropia Universe - Markup Graph Reading
In this example, you can see that I've just managed to sell an item called "Chikara Oni-Roku E.L.M Edition (L)". It is a "limited" (cannot be repaired) weapon that has a maximum TT Value of 1.00 PED (if full and unused).

And from this, what you should take away is that in the period of "that day", a POSSIBLE total of 6 "Chikara Oni-Roku E.L.M Edition (L)" had been sold (each one is 1.00 PED if full TT and the sales was 6.00 PED).

Next, from the "Item Sold" confirmation, you can see how the sold item has an effect on the markup history graph for that the lines are drawn, where the markups are, the sales as well as when it was sold.

You can use your mouse to hover over any point in the graph and it will show you the corresponding values of the various axes within its tooltip. These values do not reflect the actual sales, markup or time values but the AXES' values (for easier reading). Adjust your mouse position accordingly (depending on which point you wish to inspect).

* Disclaimer: From this point forth, the rest is just my understanding of how to read the graph. It may or may not be totally accurate. Use your own judgement on this. *

And so from my understanding, according to this "Day" graph, if you exclude the point made by my sales, then a total of 5 other pieces of this weapon was sold within the day.

Two pieces were sold at close to the "2013-09-13 18:03:46" mark at an averaged value of below 1400% markup. Their markups were lumped together and averaged possibly due to their sales time, time when sold, being very close to one another. This can be deduced by the evident sharp point marked by the "Sales" line (in cyan) at the 2.00 PED mark.

The other three pieces could possibly be hiding within the straight line section of the graph...with one sold at the start and end of the line and the last one hiding in between....and thus forming the straight line seen.

That is my understanding of how the Day Market Value graph can be read. As for the Week, Month, Year and Decade ones? It should possibly be working in the same way with each data points making a sharp visible "point" within the graph.

However, these data points should be seen as averages for that specific time period...pending on how the system handles the individual auction sales. But nonetheless, it should be sufficient for you to now gauge and understand the value of what you have in your hands now, right?
Just be sure to note that this "Market Value" data is a compilation of all the sales that happened for that item regardless of which planet it was sold upon. Hence, the data will not reflect the minute discrepancies in markups on the various planets found in existence within the game. (Usually items sold on the "production" planet, native/local/whatever, will mostly be "cheaper" than when sold on other planets that do not produce them.)
Previous: Entropia Universe (Part Four)Next: Entropia Universe (Part Six)