Freeworlds: Tides of War is a fan built Star Wars total conversion mod for Digital Anvil's Freelancer game that was released several years ago. When fans began to make mods for Freelancer, one of the many things people were keen on seeing was a Freelancer mod based on the Star Wars universe developed by George Lucas. Freeworlds and Tides of War were the answer to this outcry. The development team of both mods have now joined forces to create an epic new Star Wars TC, Freeworlds: Tides of War.

Post feature Report content RSS feed A true dynamic economy

For those interested in trading, Freeworlds: Tides of War has a treat in store for you!

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By Qi



Acronyms:

PB-price = price when player-buys at a base
PS-price = price when player-sells at a base
Note: never use the terms "buying" and "selling", because is the base doing the buying/selling, or is the player?

Basic principle of the dynamic economy

PS-prices decrease due to transactions, and recover (increase) at time intervals when there aren't transactions.
The minimum PS-price is the "baseline PS-price" and the maximum PS-price is a multiplication factor (per category) of the PS-price set by the admins.
When there are no transactions at all for longer than 1 hour, price recovery is halted and PS-prices will be set to baseline at a rate of 1 price per 10 seconds, eventually resetting the entire economy to baseline. However as soon as someone starts to trade, the dynamic economy will resume normal behavior.

"NOTE" wrote: PB-prices are not changing at all. This is due to the principle that Freelancer will allow the player to sell a commodity for PB-price everywhere. However the dynamic prices have to be set at each base for each commodity. This poses the following dilemma:

  • If the PB-price would increase at the moment that the player buys something, he can sell it right away at the same station for a profit, which is unacceptable
  • If we would increase the PB-price after some hours, we would have to increase it at all bases, which would be a performance hog.

The server programs:

There are two server programs that have to run all the time:

  • Event Mode Scanner -- this program only does one thing: scans events (FLHook Eventmode) and store them in the events table. This program could not be expanded to do more than that, because in the time it would do additional stuff, it would miss events (so tested).
  • Event Actions Program -- This does the following:
    • On a cycle of 10 seconds
    • Scans the events table and parses the events, executes activities where required
    • When trading is done, recovers 4 (random) PS-prices per cycle, that have not been recovered in the past hour. All prices will have had a turn within 1 hour. Price increase is set per category by the admins (so it's an "PS-price hourly increase factor")
    • When a player sells a commodity at a designated destination, decreases that price and sends out a universe message with the new price. The amount of price decrease is set per category by the admins (so it's an "PS-price decrease per 100 items factor")
    • When there is no trading since 1 hour, stops with prices recovery, and start to set 1 (random) PS-price per cycle back to baseline. As soon as trading is restarted, the economy switches back to normal behavior.
    • Adds counted items at Player-Sells designated destinations to the stockpiles.

An Economy message about a price decrease.

User Posted Image

Location of the screens

Go to the FW:TOW community website at:
Freeworldstidesofwar.com

If you want to see screens that are behind player login you have to register on this website. The game server web applications use the same login idents.

In the community website, in the menu click GOTO, game server. That opens the web application of the game server.

The Trades Runs screen

User Posted Image

This screen is made for the typical situation: the player is in a certain system, and wishes to pick up a cargo. What would be the best thing to take, and where is it?

Click on the system, then click the bases one by one. When doing so, the screen will show what commodities are sold where. Clicking on each commodity the player can see where the trade destinations are.

Terms on the screen:

  • Commodity = the type of goods. Each type is grouped in a category, which the player cannot see. Each category has its own PB-price and multipliers. So if the player trades Spice, and finds that the price decrease is severe after selling some of it, then that is true for all contraband. The categories are:
    • Basic Materials
    • Beings (Misc)
    • Civilian Vehicles
    • Contraband
    • Food
    • Intel
    • Luxury Items
    • Military Technology
    • Military Vehicles
    • News
    • Pharmaceuticals
    • Precious Minerals
    • Raw Materials
    • Soldiers/Battle Droids
    • Technology
    • Vips/Passengers
  • Volume -- the cargo hold of a ship is given in "volume". For example cargo hold size = 200. If a commodity has a volume of 1, you can load 200 items in this hold. If the volume is 0.2 (example: water), you can load 1000 (200 divided by 0.2). If the volume is 15, you can load only 13 items (example Hutt passengers, 13x15=195, you got 5 volume left free)
  • Price -- the dynamic economy calculates prices at 4 decimals precision, but will round it off to full numbers on the screens and while setting new prices.
  • Travel minutes -- on this screen, this is the time to travel from the set base selling this commodity, to given destination. However the profits are based on the shortest travel from any base selling that commodity. So it may be possible that you travel a long time for a small profit, because the commodity is also PB-bought nearby. The travel is taking trade lanes into account.
  • Profit 1min 1vol -- The profit if flying 1 minute with 1 volume of given commodity. So this is easily multiplied by your cargo size for having an idea how much credits can be obtained. This way also allows for comparing trades with things having different volumes.

The Dynamic Economy screen

User Posted Image

When players are trading, the PS-price is lowered on selling the goods. Then every 10 seconds 4 PS-prices are increased to recover. On this screen you can see that happening. It is just an indication that the dynamic economy is running.

ADMIN Goods screen

User Posted Image

You can click on a commodity to get information about it. In the top block the category can be adjusted. Click on infocard to see the icon, volume and text of the infocard. The infocard text can be changed. These changes can be gathered by a server-based program which updates the TOW_Dynamic.dll, which belonges in the Freelancer EXE folder.

User Posted Image

Click on Player Buys to see the source bases of the commodity. The shown PB-price is the commodity category price multiplied by the commodity volume (so it is the PB-price per item). New bases can be added and existing bases can be deleted. These changes can be gathered by a server-based program which updates the market_commodity.ini file which belongs in the Freelancer DATA/EQUIPMENT folder.

User Posted Image

Click on Player Sells to see the destination bases of the commodity. The shown PS-price is the commodity baseline price which is the minimum PS-price. Next to that is the current PS-price of the dynamic economy. Next to that the maximum PS-price, which calculated from a multiplication factor set (by admin) at the category. New destination bases can be added and existing bases can be deleted. These changes can be gathered by a server-based program which updates the market_commodity.ini file which belongs in the Freelancer DATA/EQUIPMENT folder.

The ADMIN Goods Catergories screen

User Posted Image

On this screen the admin can control the dynamics. All control is by category.

As always any comments, suggestions or questions are always welcomed!
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Post comment Comments
Lucífer
Lucífer

Woah...Have fun! ^^;

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FW:ToW_Sushi Author
FW:ToW_Sushi

Thanks!

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ADTeam™
ADTeam™

DAMN! I'm not good with maths :/...

Anyways, awesome update :D

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FW:ToW_Sushi Author
FW:ToW_Sushi

Hehe. Well, it's simple for the player and complicated for the admin. So that's an important distinction.

Reply Good karma+2 votes
Terminator7240
Terminator7240

SPREADSHEETS! \O/ its like EVE all over again :D

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Tilranus
Tilranus

I so want to this game now.
I will not call this a mod no more.

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erikwijnands
erikwijnands

Indeed, its very complex, freeworlds became a game on its own and its going to be amazing, I just know it!

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Vegas
Vegas

I agree with this. The Freeworlds Team create very more than a simple 'mod'. ;)

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FW:ToW_Sushi Author
FW:ToW_Sushi

Thanks guys!

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shortandpoor
shortandpoor

I thought this stopped at the Server Program part but then I realized it kept going and going and going and going and going..

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FW:ToW_Sushi Author
FW:ToW_Sushi

Lots of info to share. Qi wanted people to understand the complexity and awesomeness of this new economy.

Reply Good karma+2 votes
Apache1334
Apache1334

I just got really confused. But it seems like a really cool and well thought out system.

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ponyus
ponyus

i didnt even try to understand all that. if its that deep, its gotta be amazing. just like the rest of the game!

thanks for sharing anyways!

btw, what happend to the short vid of the hyperspace system that i asked for?

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FW:ToW_Sushi Author
FW:ToW_Sushi

Hmm...I must have forgot about it. What exactly do you want to see a video of?

Reply Good karma+2 votes
Coldfist
Coldfist

I would take a guess and say the jump system, you know jumping to another system without using a hyperbouy or whatever you call it now. ;)

Also player the dockable ships, aka the carrier ships would be fun to see inaction.

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ponyus
ponyus

yeah, thats it.

and dockable player ships would be fun to see in action too ;)

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Jesusfreak
Jesusfreak

Cool stuff.

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T-max
T-max

'PS-prices decrease due to transactions, and recover (increase) at time intervals when there aren't transactions.'
Remind me of my first Economic class. 'support and demand'

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PaththeGreat
PaththeGreat

And once again, Qi proves that he is in fact an artificial intelligence created from the Internet. Good going, Qi!

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