The Daily Grind: How important is person-to-person trading in an MMORPG?

    
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Earlier in May, Neowiz clarified that the western version of Bless Online, like Black Desert, would eschew player-to-player trading, sticking instead to just an auction hall. It brought up all the old arguments over whether or not this is a good thing for online worlds.

Those in favor of kicking personal trading to the curb claim that it helps the studio crack down on goldsellers and spammers. Those opposed say it definitely doesn’t and that even if it did, the place of those goldsellers will just be taken up by the studio’s own cash shop anyway, such that the net effect on the economy is negligible.

My own line in the sand is clear: I side with those who say even if it does cut down on goldselling and spam, it’s never worth the loss to the fidelity of the game world and player community. MMORPGs have already been stripped of so much of what made them unique; I hate to see even more paved over just for the convenience of the customer service team employed to clean up chat, and I reserve a special set of side-eyes for all the studios “saving” us from goldsellers just so they themselves can corner that market.

Where do you stand? How important is person-to-person trading in an MMORPG to you?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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Ernost
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Ernost

While I’d ideally like to have both, I’ll take an auction house over player trading any day. Warframe has player trading but no auction house and it is TORTURE.

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Zariarn

The only thing I can honestly say I dislike about GW2 is this topic. Great game but to opt out person to person trading is lame.

cures80
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cures80

Its about not being able to pass on the best gear to my buddy in a pvp game. Its the foundation of BDO. Very important. I dont get how you cant see that.

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imayb1

The last time I played an MMO without access to trading, I quit the game around L20 wearing a L1 top and iirc, L9 pants. I think I had L6 and a L11 weapon (dual-wield) and everything was kicking my ass. My luck is crap; I didn’t get the right drops for my class and the starter-style quests didn’t give armor.

Thus, I shall never play another game without trading access.

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Jack Tyme

When I started playing MMOs, (Mid 90s) p2p trading was a main functionality of almost every game I tried. Nowadays almost every MMO bans player to player trading. Simply to divert gold sellers from trying to make a dollar from their time spent in the game. All this equates to is that I play way less more games than I use to because most of them block trading. Like I would be playing the crap out of BDO, but because there is no trading, I won’t even waste my time. Time is the most valuable currency available to any living being. Also, time is money.

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zuldar

By itself it’s of moderate importance, not including it though just reeks of lazy. Rather then take reasonable steps to handle issues like botting and gold selling; they’d rather just nuke the whole player community aspect. Any company that would make this decision does not know what I want from a game and will undoubtedly continue to make questionable decisions.

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kalech

Mandatory, but should never be without an Auction House equivalent imo. Some people are uncomfortable approaching strangers, even online in a game, so they should have an alternative. But player-to-player trading is very necessary for more than just actual trading. Such as helping out a friend, grinding mats together (especially in games such as Black Desert… Building a boat to explore with a friend takes a shit ton of mats and you can’t even help each other out) or giving gifts to new players.

I don’t know what alternative they could go for to hinder gold selling, but I think that removing the ability to trade items with other players does more damage to the game than having goldsellers. Perhaps go WoW’s route and allow players to just buy gold from an official source, I don’t know. If you can’t help out friends and share your wealth, then what’s the point of making a social game?

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Sally Bowls

Very important; mandatory. Technically, literal person-to-person trading is not required for me; but some unrestrained way for people to trade is. As a practical matter, if the dev has left out p2p trades, they probably have some other economic shenanigans that will cause me to never play the game.

So I would be fine w/o p2p trading if I had shared inventory to get to alts, could mail stuff to friends and there was an unrestrained AH.

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Armsbend

It also adds an entirely new layer to strategy. There are the guys, like me, who probably can’t hit elite levels of raiding. So they discover something they are good at, like exploiting the economy, and earn elite items that way. Instead of…just one more level it is just one more million gold and IT’S MINE!

Adding more depth to your game is what keeps it around not the opposite. Killing the same dragon over and over again always gets stale. Economic pvp is far too dynamic to ever really get old.

Xijit
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Xijit

I have never once hit the level cap in a MMO (except for Guild Wars 1 & the game became dull and tedious to me after that) and I have never hungered to be an Elite player.

… I have however had shit tons of fun scribbling down laundry lists of items I need for crafting recipes and then making price lists of the combined market value of the components vs the market value of the resultant item.

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Ashfyn Ninegold

I can’t even imagine an MMO without person to person trading. But then, I started gaming in the age of buff food and drink and well before ‘personalized’ drops.

Draconian moves like this never, ever stop the bad action it’s intended to stop. That just takes another route to accomplish it’s goal. It just ends up hurting the legit players every time.

atatahir
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atatahir

I do see the value of person to person trading in MMO’s, but the negatives (trade, gold spams, impact on economy) and inconvenience in my view out weights the benefits.

For me ideal situation would be to allow some limited trading for items and upgrades that can be crafted, but disallow it for everything else. I especially like the system that WoW had with enchantments where trades were just upgrades and worked for account bound items too.