Trade Manifesto

This manifesto was outdated when it was written. Very little to say there.

If you want a community sales experience, you need a community environment. $Trade anyone? Oh, right, this cancer is filled with the same kinds of price scalping you find at a major sporting event. "WTT my 20 fusing for your 1 exalt" or some other clearly outrageous price.

I don't know why GGG claims to be concerned with how easy it is for the no-lifers to get better gear, everything they do is centered on converting the average player into no-lifers.

I am not advocating what comes next, but consider for a moment how D3 dealt with this issue. To keep from converting humans into D3 playing robots/machines, after the collapse of the RMAH (there was never an issue with the AH), Loot 2.0 made it easier for casual players to get the gear they really wanted without destroying the pursuit of new loot (6 mods to roll and high variation with those rolls means casual can have set pieces but only the no-lifers can have the best gear, a win win for D3 under the specific problem they wanted to solve.) Again, I'm not advocating for this; I think this would be the end of POE, imo.

The next question is, do the players want to be social with trading? As far as I can tell, the player base doesn't even necessarily like being social while playing. Evidence? Guilds. In D3, a more social game, guilds and communities are all over the place. In POE, I see many people in a guild by themselves ; and of the larger guilds, it's usually a place to help newbies by providing a shared stash with garbage uniques. Global is hit or miss between trolling, the one aspy in chat, a lot of "please google this for me", and a few people who like to google for other people. (I really like Global....I do a little bit of each...though, my trolling is usually to obvious to bait anyone....sad times.)

All the same, the one issue with the AH in D3 was that people stopped playing the game in order to play the AH. The AH was not the problem so much as the loot system, and the result was that you went about 30 seconds before someone comments on how D3 was the first AH similuator with an ARPG mini game.

POE's trading can be this way at times too. Take maps for an example. With so many maps, the price of maps is below the price point at which most people would violate one of their portals to make the sale (assuming the price was not a price fixer or troll....also possible).

I like POE. I'm not leaving (unless Loot 2.0 comes here.)

If we're on the same page or close up to this point. Stop reading. Next, I will attempt the insane challenging of proposing fixes.

Idea 1: sell us a real money tab where items we place for sale sell for the price we set, provided we're online. Optionally, make the price per item 1 chaos or less if you're really concerned with enabling your players to get good gear. (To be clear, I want GGG to sell us the tab for real money, and player to player trade would remain in game orbs only.)

Idea 2: create trade guilds where players can post items for sale and lose a portion of the profits to the NPC manning the pool of goods. Restrict players to only be able to belong to one trade guild, and further restrict it so players need a player invite. Can this be abused, you betcha. All the same, buyers don't spend 30 minutes trying to chase down sellers.

Idea 3: convert $trade to a real time market where buyers can open a trade window with sellers if they see an item they want. For example, I might find a Tabula Rasa in a map. Without leaving the map, I post it in trade for some price. Without having to leave the map, I can trade with players if we come to terms.

I don't care if none of these ideas is "good". The point is that we need to admit that this manifesto was out dated when it was written and there is a real problem with trade that makes most players save up their time to play trading for a time when they really cannot continue unless they trade. It's painful often enough that I would rather buy Zana maps then buy maps from players for cheaper. (I don't often have this issue with 6ex items, just items worth less than 10c.)
Last edited by Grendahl on Jun 15, 2018, 11:48:22 AM
Grendahl wrote:
Idea 2: create trade guilds where players can post items for sale and lose a portion of the profits to the NPC manning the pool of goods.

I think the main problem here is: how much is for example 5% of 1c?
almost everything u can read in the first post will be changed in the near future. just dont be such lovers who do not understand how things are going when someone is bought by a big player.

small indie company btw xD

EDIT: the "comfortability" changes, which are comming constantly, will reach the "trading" part of the game in near future. trust me. just quit the game until they finally manage to make the trading "non-cancerous".
Last edited by b44dss on Jun 20, 2018, 2:05:28 PM
I think it is a bit sad that we still have to go outside the game to make a trade…

If the trade can't be too easy or too fast, just add na auction house with open auction (bid) with 12h only for exemple, this way people can't really trade fast, scam or whatever… and add buyout option for currency, maps, etc (non equipable items)

IGN(Standard): Bheyn
GMT (0:00)
As I've mentioned before repeatedly, the ideal solution (and one that GGG have admitted they couldn't fault) would be letting players set up an NPC in their hideout to sell their items at a listed price.

It would require only minimal work to implement, especially since (as few players know) you actually CAN enter any "open" hideout you wish by simply typing "/hideout PlayerNameGoesHere"

Just tossing that in would make it an "opt-in" system, since players would have to let anyone enter their hideout for it to work, so you wouldn't HAVE to sell that way unless you wanted to. Or if a player only wanted to sell while they were online, it'd work with the improved social controls: you could invite them to your hideout no matter what zone you were in.

One of the game's core problems that NO solution that involves requiring face-to-face interaction will fix is that of "fake" prices. The current system is rife with plenty of folk listing a fake low price so they can try to scoop them up off of unwary sellers.

What's amusing is that GGG's white knights have cited "but it'll allow bots" (without any logic to back their claim whatsoever) and GGG has banned players for using UI overlays, but there are players using tools/add-ons to fake online/offline status. It's not a mistake when the same player shows on as "online" for hours on end, when it's easy to tell that they're offline in-game.

In fact, I recently discovered one such player; I tried whispering them, and got no response. I asked if they were there, and got "player is offline." Their item still remained there, as the cheapest of all options, with them supposedly "online" for at least 2 more hours before I stopped periodically checking.

Apparently GGG considers this sort of behavior A-OK, which means they REALLY need to take a long hard look at themselves.

Bley11 wrote:
I think it is a bit sad that we still have to go outside the game to make a trade…

This is a core part of it that none of the status quo's white knights can EVER reasonably justify.
Rufalius, LL Tendrils Guardian | Hemorae, TS Raider | Moath, Doomsower Static Strike Juggernaut | Ofero, Oro's Lightning Strike Slayer | Tiotau, Self-Cast Frostbolt Inquisitor
ACGIFT wrote:
As I've mentioned before repeatedly, the ideal solution (and one that GGG have admitted they couldn't fault) would be letting players set up an NPC in their hideout to sell their items at a listed price.

Player shops are the answer. They need to happen.
Chris wrote:
Today's news post describes some minor changes to the trade online API we have made and mentions the beta launch of an official trade site (which has a similar featureset to community trade sites but also supports our non-English-speaking users). If you have been linked directly to this manifesto post, then please read the news post first.

This manifesto post is for players who are interested in hearing more about our philosophy and reasoning behind trade and the direction of these changes.

Items Matter. Trade is Important.

When we started developing Path of Exile in 2006, we identified several key design pillars. These are fundamental philosophies chosen to guide our design decisions throughout development. One of these was that "items matter". Items are a player's reward for playing Path of Exile. They're the primary way of measuring progress in a league. A person with vastly more in-game wealth has often played longer than someone with a higher level character. They also matter because if a player had better items, then they'd be able to build more powerful characters, play harder content, and be viewed as richer and more successful within the game. The acquisition of items is why people play Action RPGs. Chances are, if you're reading this, you understand why it's important that items matter because your Path of Exile items mean a lot to you as well.

For items to matter, it's important that they can be traded to other players. It's important that you could give the item to the other player, if they were able to convince you into it. For this reason, almost nothing in Path of Exile is bound to your account. Even in Solo Self-Found mode, which doesn't allow trading, items can be moved at will into the regular trading leagues so that you can benefit from their value if desired.

The ability to trade any item is a fundamental part of why people enjoy playing Path of Exile - if you're lucky, you can find amazing stuff that you can trade for all the items needed to create an entire new character build.

Consequences of Easy Trade

So given that we love trade and feel it is critical to Path of Exile's formula, why is there so much debate around trade in this game? Most of it stems around whether trade should be easy or not. While easy trade sounds great on paper, there are some important considerations!

Easy trade reduces the number of times a character improves their items.
People who are heavily engaged in trade perform fewer item upgrades to achieve their final build. They get there in fewer steps, because they can easily buy items that are close to what they need. Simply put, their character progression is more about trading than it is about getting items from monsters. We believe that it is more fun to slowly and iteratively upgrade a character over time and to have a longer journey to gear a character up. Knowing that a monster could drop something that improves your character is a great motivator for playing one more level!

Easy trade means reducing drop rates
Compare two hypothetical games. In the first game, trade is very difficult. The majority of items that can't be used by your character are not traded to other people. In the second game, trade is very easy. Many of the items that you can't use are traded to other people for items that you can. In the second game, because of trade, you have a much higher acquisition rate of useful items. While that sounds great if you want instant gratification, in reality it means that the second game either receives reduced drop rates relative to the first, or ends up being a whole lot easier and less challenging to achieve goals in.

Easy trade would make the disparity between different players too great
Both of the above points are even worse when you consider that the level of engagement with trade varies substantially from player to player. Most players who play Path of Exile never trade. Out of the players who do trade, most only complete a few trades in a league. The subset of players who regularly trade strongly overlaps with our core reddit and forum communities. Chances are, if you're reading this, then you're one of the top 10% of players in terms of engagement with advanced systems. The difference in magnitude of trading (and hence item acquisition and progress) between non/low-traders and heavy traders is gigantic. While a regular player would be lucky to accumulate a small handful of Exalted Orbs in a league, a trader might reach hundreds in the same timeframe. This enables them to fully-gear Shaper-capable characters while the non-trader is still in mid-tier maps or lower.

The significant differences in character power and player progression caused by trade has already created a situation where Path of Exile is very hard for some players and quite easy for others. Some people never stand a chance of seeing some of the Atlas of Worlds content, while others can rather quickly defeat it and are looking for new challenges. We're tentatively okay with the degree to which this occurs currently, but it would be much worse if trading were made substantially easier.

Easy trade allows for greater abuse by automation
Another topic is automation. While we work hard to stamp out bots and abusive behaviour, it would be hard to completely eliminate the damage caused by a few trade bots with access to a fast trade system. If they have the ability to search out and buy items without having to talk to another player, then there would be some very large-scale economic consequences that would not be good for regular players.

Trade in Path of Exile

From the start, we knew that Path of Exile needed the ability to trade items and that we had to be careful not to make it too easy. We had seen what happened in other Action RPGs when characters could be upgraded trivially. We added trade chat and a secure player-to-player trade screen so that people could negotiate transactions and complete them without counterparty risk.

With insufficient foresight into how it'd eventually affect trade, we also added the ability to link items on the official forums. Linking items is a way of showing other players that you actually own an item, because the system automatically checks that you still have the item in that form and marks it as verified. This system was intended so that players could show off their awesome finds to other players, in a similar way to the in-game item linking system. Because items matter so much in Path of Exile, it was important that we provided many ways to prove ownership of items. We even intended to allow people to Tweet their items from within the game, though never got around to implementing this feature.

Before long, people used item linking to set up shops within the trade forums. This was expected, because the goal of item linking was to prove ownership of items (so that people could know that you still have the item before they make you an offer). These shops became complicated and people made tools that let users manage their shops and post to them efficiently. So far, so good.

Then came the forum-scraping bots. Smart community members worked out that they could automatically crawl the forum and insert all of the items into a database, creating an instantly- and accurately-searchable index of all items for trade in Path of Exile. There was nothing we could do about this, because it's almost impossible to stop people gathering information from a public website.

A trade ecosystem evolved where players would search for items on trade websites to quickly find what they need, but would have to manually contact the user in-game to perform the trade. While this was a lot quicker than before, we grew to accept it but were worried about one aspect in particular: To create trade forum threads easily, users would download third-party programs and enter their account details (or at least web session IDs). While these tools and their authors never took advantage of this in an illegal way, it was a potentially dangerous situation for our users and we really needed an official solution. We made it so that Premium Stash Tabs can expose their contents to trade sites on a public API.

So that's where we are today. It's easy to list items for trade, easy to search for items, and is often quite frustrating to complete a trade. This remaining frustration is the only thing standing in the way of trades being basically instant. While we understand that this sounds like a positive thing, we are very concerned regarding what will happen if that does eventuate. We have to prioritise the long-term health of Path of Exile.

The Trade Market

The version of Path of Exile published by Tencent in Mainland China uses the "Trade Market" rather than a system of exposing items via public stash tabs and forum posts for searching on web pages. This system is also in use on the Xbox One version of Path of Exile - as you can imagine, web page searches and textual trade conversations aren't well suited to the controller input of a console.

On the trade market, we're experimenting with the opposite end of the trade spectrum, where it's very easy to complete trades but more difficult to find the exact item you're looking for. You can search broadly by a specific item class or type, but have to look through a lot of search results to find the one you want to make an offer on. This system intentionally makes the search process harder and the trade process easier, for quite a different trade experience. We're not planning to bring it to the international PC version of Path of Exile.

The Role of Solo Self-Found Mode

Players who don't engage in trade are at a significant progression disadvantage in Path of Exile. However, some people are happy for the game to take longer to complete and enjoy the challenge that comes from living off the land. Historically, these players could choose to play alone, but would receive no recognition and had no way of proving that they had done so. Anyone could accuse them of having traded, invalidating their accomplishments.

We officially added support for a Solo, Self-Found mode in Content Update 2.6.0 (Breach League). This optional mode allows players to create characters that can't trade or party up. They have separate ladders to show how long they lasted in this mode before opting to convert back to regular characters. It's important to note that even in this mode, items can be easily moved back to the regular game to be traded (albeit not for any advantage in SSF).

While this mode eases the situation for people who purposefully never engage in trade, it was not intended as a precursor to us making trade massively easier in the regular game.

Today's Changes

As mentioned in today's news post, we are changing the "Online API" to expose the AFK status of players. This API is currently consumed by community trade sites, so it's easy for them to add functionality to allow users to filter searches to just online players who are currently available to trade. In addition, players in DND mode are no longer shown as online, because it would be impossible for them to receive any messages sent to them.

We have also launched an experimental version of our own trade site: Please try it out and give us feedback!

The goal of our trade site isn't to fundamentally change how trade works, it's just to provide an alternative to other community sites for players who want to have options (or use a language other than English!)

Are you serious with this post right now?

First of all, it's not what you believe, that is useful for the games development, it is what people want and need. If the drops were lowered and the auction house was implemented, the players would have the ability to enjoy the game itself more, apart from just farming and sitting hours upon hours trying to trade... You must be missing the point of the auction house... First you said that it will give more instant gratification and people will value their gear less, they will upgrade their gear less? What?? You said yourselves that you would need to lower the drop rates... DO IT, that way people will value their gear more, less time will be wasted on trading and if they will want to trade, they will have an auction house to do it easily, without downloading 300 macros and sitting for hundreds of hours in your trading site... In other words, your game will finally be an RPG game, not a trading simulator, and I'm not gonna start talking about the struggles that beginners face with your current trading system... Get over yourself and think about the community, we need the Auction house, make it happen.
Piefruit wrote:

First of all, it's not what you believe, that is useful for the games development, it is what people want and need.


What you want is not what the game needs.
If the devs were always doing what the player wanted ( at least some players, and the most vocal part of the community is the one complaining and the people that want everything on a silver plate ), the game would be dead, burried very very deep by now.

SSF is not and will never be a standard for balance, it is not for people entitled to getting more without trading.

Completely outdated fun builds :
SweetBreaker : thread 823111 ( facebreaker infernal blow witch ).
Sunder guardian (poisoninGaijin) : thread 1831267 [BHC] !rip
Fruz wrote:
If the devs were always doing what the player wanted ( at least some players, and the most vocal part of the community is the one complaining and the people that want everything on a silver plate ), the game would be dead, burried very very deep by now.

But if you need to lookup how to trade in a game where 'Trade is Important'... something's definitely VERY wrong with the way you implemented trading!

And I think the most vocal group about trade isn't the usual group of top players, as they're always online, always trade and are the exact reason why GGG don't want to implement 'easy trade'. People complaining are casual players that don't want to interrupt the precious time they can play for trading.

Chris wrote:
Easy trade reduces the number of times a character improves their items.
People who are heavily engaged in trade perform fewer item upgrades to achieve their final build.

And this is exactly with the heavy traders are doing in the current non-easy trade market. So instead of making trade available to everybody, they make it for only those that are online a lot and don't mind getting interrupted in their playing.
There is something i really don't understand at all.

If i understand it correctly, the Auction House is available on China's servers, so how is it going on theses servers? did anything they predict actually happend? why don't we learn from it?

As a casual player, the actual trade system makes me mad, being connected to sell stuff is just a pain and the people price fixing are just the worst. Plus a LOT of players don't know about the trade websites (i didn't know about it until maps and getting destroyed with the looted stuff).

I don't say that to make it change, i'll give up this game way before they will think about adding Auction House. Just giving an honest feedback.

Have fun.
Last edited by SaikoTick on Jul 10, 2018, 4:22:29 PM

Report Forum Post

Report Account:

Report Type

Additional Info