A Grand Unified Model Of MMO Economies

If there’s one area in which MMOs differ more than any other, it’s economy.

From Guild Wars 2’s uber-accessible model to Everquest 1’s “go stand somewhere and shout”, via the massive player-run commercial empires of Star Wars Galaxies (and the equally huge and even more cutthroat world of EVE), no two worlds work the same.

This week, The Ancient Gaming Noob decided to undertake an ambitious task – to overview them all and come up with some overarching structure with which to describe them…

“I was thinking about all of this and trying to fit MMO player economies into a two dimensional system for comparison.

What I came up with was how much of a requirement the player economy was to play the game and how much friction there was to engaging in the player economy.

The first seems pretty reasonable to gauge. Can you play the game, or can you get very far in the game, without engaging in the player economy. For example, in EVE Online, you have to use the player economy to play the game. You could, I suppose, try to avoid it. In fact, it might be an interesting experiment to see what you could do without it. But I imagine that it would be a long, slow grind to completely avoid the market and it would limit what you could accomplish.”

Read the rest and see where your favourite MMO fits in: Charting The Relative Natures Of MMO Economies