ZAX - Duration Testing

11516182021

Comments

  • mentinmindmaker
    mentinmindmaker Member Posts: 1,365 Arc User

    The biggest unknown variable could be a massive wave of new players, once GearBox announces what they plan to change on these Cryptic games.

    Or a massive exodus...
  • rikitaki
    rikitaki Member Posts: 806 Arc User

    The biggest unknown variable could be a massive wave of new players, once GearBox announces what they plan to change on these Cryptic games.

    Or a massive exodus...
    I kinda do not get where people got the expectation Gearbox is going to talk into the game design. That is not why acquisitions happen - you just want a source of money/some IP. As long as Cryptic does not fail at that, there will hardly be any pressure to change things.
  • mentinmindmaker
    mentinmindmaker Member Posts: 1,365 Arc User
    rikitaki said:

    The biggest unknown variable could be a massive wave of new players, once GearBox announces what they plan to change on these Cryptic games.

    Or a massive exodus...
    I kinda do not get where people got the expectation Gearbox is going to talk into the game design. That is not why acquisitions happen - you just want a source of money/some IP. As long as Cryptic does not fail at that, there will hardly be any pressure to change things.
    It really depends on how the economic situation for NW/Cryptic *really* is.

    If they are running at a loss drastic measures could be taken to turn the situation around.

    I guess we will never know until the hammer hits since we will not get access to see the Cryptic accounts :)
  • hotfrostworm
    hotfrostworm Member Posts: 444 Arc User
    @rikitaki the terms of the purchase (in the PDF) states;

    Through the acquisition of PWE, Gearbox Entertainment will onboard PWE Publishing and Cryptic Studios, which will both remain independent within Gearbox Entertainment. This acquisition will strengthen Gearbox Entertainment’s Publishing division.

    The food chain (top to bottom) is Embracer Group - GearBox - PWE (game division) - Cryptic Studios. GearBox says, I think it would be in our best interest to relocate Cryptic Studios to Dallas, Texas (cheaper wages) then it will be done. If they think making the game into a mobile app... well you get the idea.

    The studio has a track record of success with three of the last four launches achieving meaningful commercial success. Neverwinter and Star Trek Online continue to be top performing MMOs with highly engaged user bases. Cryptic comprises a team of 136 employees.


    ...and...

    During 2021, PWE had operating losses stemming from the cancellation of Cryptic’s newest MMO (Magic: Legends) and a gap in PWE Publishing’s release schedule. Embracer is highly confident that under its leadership, both Cryptic and PWE Publishing will be strong financial contributors in addition to their strategic value with new IP and an MMO capability that has been missing from Embracer’s portfolio.

    ...but wait there is more.

    “It’s an honor for us to welcome this talented group of individuals into the Gearbox Entertainment family. Gearbox will invest into the future of Cryptic as an independent, dynamic studio that is passionate about MMOs. That commitment is paired with an exciting new partnership that will emerge as the talented Perfect World publishing team and their promising line up of future games will become supported and bolstered by the capability and strength of the Gearbox Publishing team,” said Randy Pitchford, founder of Gearbox Entertainment Company

    Like I said before, in an earlier posting, I have been through corporate mergers in the past. You really need to read between the lines. They say nice things about you, this is a press release after all, but then they expect you to uproot yourself from equity and move to some unknown location for less pay. Obviously this was "in the wind" last summer, why do you think Doug Miller, Chris Whiteside, and others left the company? Question, what upcoming future games do you think Randy Pitchford is talking about? It sounds like they might be getting ready to make "Borderlands MMO", but it could be anything with the properties Embracer is collecting. They expect these 136 people to work on their other games and maintain the 3 games they already have issues running.

    Both Embracer and GearBox have the final call on what will be done, how they plan to make this profitable to their purchase. The game's popularity and revenues are critically linked to their decisions. I never buy something just to throw it away, nor do I ignore it, while it sits in the corner costing me money.
  • blargskull
    blargskull Member Posts: 512 Arc User

    I never buy something just to throw it away, nor do I ignore it, while it sits in the corner costing me money.

    I take it Wendy is the exception to this rule? :trollface:

    Enough about all that junk, the big question here is all about the ZAX. I see you opened up a blank tab on your sheet for October 2021 to February 2022. Maybe you should focus your energies on the new tab? My boss talks about "positive synergy" all the time and I feel like smacking him upside the head and shouting, Stop talking like a new age guru and just tell people the company is going broke! I think another job is about to leave me soon. Maybe I am a jinx. Company closures follow me like a cute little puppy.




    Just killing time...
  • krysoprase#0717
    krysoprase#0717 Member Posts: 5 Arc User
    Here is my current order list,
    5000 zen 22 April 2021, Collected 30 Jan 2022 between 2.00 am 3.00 am Australian EST
    3000 zen 08 May 2021
    5000 zen 09 June 2021
    5000 zen 23 September 2021
    5000 zen 20 November 2021
    5000 zen 30 January 2022
  • stefire#9202
    stefire#9202 Member Posts: 3 Arc User

    1000 Zen 22 April 2021 -> 30 Jan 2022
  • admiralwarlord#3792
    admiralwarlord#3792 Member Posts: 544 Arc User
    More than 9 months?! Wow, this needs to be fixed.
  • hotfrostworm
    hotfrostworm Member Posts: 444 Arc User
    edited January 30

    More than 9 months?! Wow, this needs to be fixed.

    The issue isn't that the ZAX is "broken", it works the same on Champions and Star Trek, but they have little or no backlog. This was the first game Cryptic directly uses the crystal currency in their auction house instead of gold.

    Neverwinter Gold = Star Trek Energy Credits = Champions Global Currency
    Neverwinter Astral Diamonds = Star Trek Dilithium = Champions Questionite

    There has been a backlog since the launch but it became increasingly worse as more easy AD flooded the economy. When the backlog swelled to 40 million, they attempted to raise the cap from 500 to 750 and that made the backlog worse. The backlog at 40 million was a 2 month wait. Today January 30th, people who placed orders 283 days ago are receiving them from prior postings on or near April 22nd, 2021. Now for the forecast;

    @krysoprase#0717 here are the estimated time of arrivals.
    3000 zen 08 May 2021 - on or near - 02 March 2022
    5000 zen 09 June 2021 - on or near - 02 May 2022
    5000 zen 23 September 2021 - on or near - 20 November 2022
    5000 zen 20 November 2021 - on or near - 10 March 2023
    5000 zen 30 January 2022 - on or near - 23 July 2023

    People posting today, January 30th, will have an estimated wait time of 540 days for their Zen.

    These statistics can be seen in my web document at the link below.

    @blargskull note taken, I will try to be more dignified like you. :lol:
    Post edited by hotfrostworm on
  • kharkov58
    kharkov58 Member Posts: 644 Arc User
    The ZAX is not broken, the problem in the game is there is not enough demand for AD to get people to sell ZEN. If Cryptic were to fix that, people would be screaming about the new prices instead of the ZAX.
  • alistairetheblu#7442
    alistairetheblu#7442 Member Posts: 27 Arc User
    edited February 1
    Posted 5k April 24 2021, received today around 2:30 PM Eastern.
  • forumaccount#7167
    forumaccount#7167 Member Posts: 111 Arc User
    Posted april 23rd, 2021 4:10 PM, recieved january 30th 3:25 PM, all central european time zone.
  • fritz#8093
    fritz#8093 Member Posts: 183 Arc User
    Just wanted to drop in and say that this is absolute bonkers and the way Cryptic doesn't even acknowledge it might be on the all-time list of HAMSTER-ups. And that list is looooooooooooooooooooooong.

    @nitocris83 is this something you ignore on purpose?
  • kharkov58
    kharkov58 Member Posts: 644 Arc User
    As far as Cryptic is concerned, this is not an issue. Everything is WAI, so why would they need to acknowledge it?
  • sandukutupu
    sandukutupu Member Posts: 2,284 Arc User

    Just wanted to drop in and say that this is absolute bonkers and the way Cryptic doesn't even acknowledge it might be on the all-time list of HAMSTER-ups. And that list is looooooooooooooooooooooong.

    @nitocris83 is this something you ignore on purpose?

    It is working, as in players are still putting their zen into the ZAX. You need to worry the day nothing is coming out. I keep explaining this; Cryptic gives you 2 empty baskets and it is not their job to fill either of them. If someone told you, they would give you 1 gold nugget for a bag of popcorn, I am sure there would be long line at the theater to buy popcorn. The problem is, Cryptic is not the ones offering you the gold nuggets for the popcorn. The players who buy the gold nuggets from Cryptic are offering it to you. Maybe they will exchange them for AD, if they don't end up trading them for ward packs and other items in the zen store.

    New players (especially the ones not reading this forum thread) buy $10 worth of zen. They don't see or know what they want from the zen store so they buy 750,000 AD from the ZAX. We all know that much can be made in the game within a week just grinding. The next step is obvious, they either quit playing or wise up to the facts. If they buy more zen, it goes into wards, they sell you wards to get your AD instead.

    I always wanted to know who had the bonehead idea of making AD the Auction House currency. I guess it really doesn't matter now, since the majority of the original team no longer works for Cryptic. I have been playing on Champions and BDO for a while now. Champions can only refine a little over 8000 Q per day. A super power in the Q store is 250K, which means it takes about 1 month of casual gaming to afford some of the quality items. The backlog isn't an issue, because it isn't there. Their auction runs on Global currency, like my husband stated above that is Neverwinter gold. You get 100 to 200 G in Champions and you can buy some real nice stuff in there. The G currency drops in fights, alerts, etc.

    Now I mentioned BDO for a reason, they do have a backlog of their own, but not what you would expect. Way back last summer I had 4000 pearls, they work just like zen here and cost the same. The pearl store sells clothing, dye, and value packs. They don't sell you mounts, players catch wild horses, train them and sell them to other players. I bought some dyes, they sold me some boxes of 3 dyes each. Although the box says blue dyes, they are random blue colors. Turned out the dye market is the gambling for the game. I ended up with more off-white dye than I could imagine. But I said, they also sell a value pack (aka VIP for 30 days) yes, if you spend $15 (1500 P) you get a VP good for 30 days and you can use a whole palate of dyes. If you drop your VP, the costume goes greyscale and when you pop in a new VP, poof! you are back in technicolor. The random dye is permanent but not very random at all. It seems they lean toward goofy colors. I have more dayglow colors than the metallic shiny colors.

    The VP can be sold for silver on the central market, it runs about 240 million silver. Since everyone wants to buy one for free silver, there never seems to be any available. Thus you have 4000 orders and not one seller. Remember those whacky random dyes? In late August, I place 40 orders for a wide variety of colors, red, yellow, blue, black, etc. Each dye will cost me 24 million silver. However I have only received 10 out of 40. And not one came in January, 5 full months and an average of 2 dyes per month. Someone in the game told me, if you place an order for the value pack, it should arrive in a year or more. Their backlog is within the central market on the pearl store items. I am cool with that, they don't run around saying the game is free to play. People who cannot afford the $15, can get a 24 hour VP as a daily login reward once a week. The VP not only unlocks the dye palate there are a bunch of other perks and buffs you get for the 30 days.

    Sorry, I didn't mean for this to sound like an advert, I am just showing you there is a backlog when cash money is on the line. I just dropped in to look at these pages. This month (February 26th) this thread will be one year old. Happy birthday Neverwinter forum thread. :cookie:
    wb-cenders.gif
  • fritz#8093
    fritz#8093 Member Posts: 183 Arc User
    Yeah I mean the reasons are obvious, but let's not pretend like Cryptic is unable to do anything about it. The most hilarious aspect is that the ZAX solely works because new players don't know that buying anything on the ZEN market and selling on the Auction House will net them more than the exchange rate of 1:750. Nobody should exchange ZEN to ADs directly.

    My unpopular opinion is that you need to detach ADs from the ZAX. There's simply too much AD laying around. I think you could start a system in which you can earn 75 ZEN with daily activities on accounts and go from there. That way active players could maintain VIP + a little extra. Astral Diamonds would still be the main currency for Auction House etc.
  • powerpuff#6508
    powerpuff#6508 Member Posts: 160 Arc User
    April 26 just came through
  • hottsuace#2038
    hottsuace#2038 Member Posts: 8 Arc User
    3000 Zen posted 4/27/21 Arrived split over 02/04-02/05
  • hotfrostworm
    hotfrostworm Member Posts: 444 Arc User
    Thanks, updated the sheet. It runs the better direction, but not negative yet. :+1:
  • kemnimtarkas
    kemnimtarkas Member Posts: 831 Arc User
    edited February 7
    rikitaki said:

    The biggest unknown variable could be a massive wave of new players, once GearBox announces what they plan to change on these Cryptic games.

    Or a massive exodus...
    I kinda do not get where people got the expectation Gearbox is going to talk into the game design. That is not why acquisitions happen - you just want a source of money/some IP. As long as Cryptic does not fail at that, there will hardly be any pressure to change things.
    I think the key piece of that is the "IP" comment. Gearbox owns the Borderlands IP lock, stock and barrel, for example. But in the case of the Cryptic games they noted, they will own NONE of the IP. Star Trek belongs to ViacomCBS and WoTG owns the Neverwinter IP.

    I think the jury is out on whether Gearbox plans to put more resources into the existing games to make them better to compete with existing and new competition, or rather plans to drain the current Cryptic staff of MMO expertise for other IP Gearbox does own, and leave the existing Cryptic content running with a skeleton crew of maintenance staff.

    I'm hopeful for the former possibility, but realistic about the chances that it could be the latter.
  • mentinmindmaker
    mentinmindmaker Member Posts: 1,365 Arc User

    Thanks, updated the sheet. It runs the better direction, but not negative yet. :+1:

    However queue length seems to be falling with around 100k per week. Not a dramatic decrease, but it seems steady.
    And on March 3rd there is a Bazaar discount/Astral lockbox event, that should reduce AD into ZAX queue even further.

    Queue length falling but wait time increasing can only mean one thing: Zen per day sold to the queue is also falling.

    Then you can speculate if this means fewer new players joining game, less Zen being spent on the game, or that people are faster to catch on with selling stuff through AH. The two first reasons are bad for Cryptic.
  • tchefi#6735
    tchefi#6735 Member Posts: 359 Arc User
    edited February 7

    It runs the better direction, but not negative yet. :+1:

    On my graph, with the last four inputs (order made 23-24-26-27th april), the trending line is now bending under 350d around orders made mid december 2021 (inflexion point is at 348days).
    So it seems we won't see a full one-year long waiting time ^^.

    (will post the graph after 15th february, i'm wainting for more inputs before ^^)
  • hotfrostworm
    hotfrostworm Member Posts: 444 Arc User
    edited February 7
    This might indicate more users are reading at this thread, deciding not to put AD in the freezer for the long haul. Here in the US the banks offer CDs (certificate of deposit) and very few young people invest their money. If I put in a CD of $5000 for 1 year, the bank gives 7% interest and I make $350. But if I remove the CD early l get a penalty for early withdrawal. I don't see people under 30 doing a lot of this long term investing in the real world, I wouldn't expect to see it here in a video game.

    Since the ones who buy AD for Zen are still active, they continue at the same rate as before. I think it would be nice, if Cryptic plans to maintain the ZAX, to install some simple banking graphs for users. They have all the data and could just post the fact sheets. @tchefi#6735 and I are having to guess and estimate, based on the little information we can obtain from the players here. Wouldn't it be nice to at least see your number in the queue line? Now serving number 24,736! :lol:

    While it is back peddling, it is still currently +280 and estimated +500 for those investing now. The flow needs to run the other direction before we can really say for sure the people who posted in July 2021 won't be waiting a full year. It is nice to see it dropping and not increasing. My wife reminded me yesterday, upon my return, that the ZAX thread is now almost 1 year old. I've been having so much fun with this little math project, I barely even noticed.

  • plasticbat
    plasticbat Member, NW M9 Playtest Posts: 10,420 Arc User
    There are at least 2 immediate AD sinks. 100K Ad for each rank 1 enchantment and many GoP for upgrade the enchantments. Mod 22 makes everyone to buy stuff using AD one way or the other.
    The game can read your mind. If you want it, you won't get it. If you don't expect to get it, you will.
  • fritz#8093
    fritz#8093 Member Posts: 183 Arc User
    Pinging @nitocris83 again because she missed an update on her Monday round :)
  • lucadamingo
    lucadamingo Member Posts: 48 Arc User
    edited February 8
    Thanks for all the leg work guys :) I always add my dates. I have been playing since beta (and perfect world before) so I always assume the worst, but it would be great if they did fricken something =/ this is beyond nuts. A year long wait lol.
  • mentinmindmaker
    mentinmindmaker Member Posts: 1,365 Arc User

    Thanks for all the leg work guys :) I always add my dates. I have been playing since beta (and perfect world before) so I always assume the worst, but it would be great if they did fricken something =/ this is beyond nuts. A year long wait lol.

    They are doing something.. they are slowly increasing the value of AD over Zen by adding more AD sinks.

    As was mentioned before, purchasing R2's and upgrading those will eat a good chunk of AD.

    Skeleton keys are in AD shop - while cheap, it will quickly add up over time.

    A number of items have been moved from Zen to AD shop.

    As a consequence, the length of the ZAX queue seems to be slowly falling.
  • aslan3775
    aslan3775 Member, NW M9 Playtest Posts: 259 Arc User
    Mod 22 is a giant AD sink with the enchantment system, and we have the upcoming Bazaar sale and IIRC, the Knox Box sale. Those are giant potential sinks. Not that I want my AD to disappear more rapidly than it already does, but there are plenty of other AD sinks that could be utilized a bit more effectively.

    For example, as @mentinmindmaker mentioned, skeleton keys are in the AD shop--but how many people use them when they know the return for the key is lower than the purchase price. Using a different price point might make a difference in the number of keys purchased. The same would be true of the (not certain what they are called) Rapid Return Teleport stations--they are free for first use, but cost 5,000AD for the second use within an hour. In a zone like Dragonvale, while players are not at rank 3 for the various factions, if it was 500AD for the second use, 1,000 for the third, etc. they may increase the use for AD--but (imo) 5,000 just seems a bit prohibitive. The same could be true for Sharandar or Avernus.

    IMO, providing a method for players to generate a nice sum of AD per day is great--it adds to the progress that your toon or army of toons is making. However, failing to offer an effective and exciting choice to spend (ie. remove) AD is the main theme that drove the creation of this thread and has keeping this thread alive for the past year. It now appears that many of the comments are bearing fruition.

    All of the contributors to this thread should be proud! You have now contributed to one of the few threads in which the Devs have really listened. ;)
  • utookmynick
    utookmynick Member Posts: 204 Arc User
    edited February 9
    aslan3775 said:

    Mod 22 is a giant AD sink with the enchantment system

    I don't know if I would say "giant." The glyphs of potency needed are not that expensive and once you have it max ranked, you unlock it for the rest of your characters.
  • fritz#8093
    fritz#8093 Member Posts: 183 Arc User
    The AD backlog went from 65M to a whopping 64M. So I'm not sure "giant" is the term to use here.