Tarkov isn't a real economy. Full stop. If you think it is, and you think saying things like "Supply and Demand exist" because that's some 180 IQ idea, its a 2 IQ idea because you're just blowing your ignorance all over your keyboard then wiping your nose with your brain tissue you obviously don't use.
Now, should Tarkov have a real economy (at least in the way we conceptualize contemporary economics)? No. Nikita, from everything he described, doesn't want this. He says he wants a player driven economy; however, the projection of his plans and how BSG handles the current economy reflect a very different ideas.
"Well OP if you're so smart why don't you explain how economies work so I can run down to the comment section and say TL;DR you're wrong hurr durr and prove you right about me!" Thank you Mr. Strawman, I will! Economics, in a contemporary sense, are agrarian based free market societies. That's every economy, local or otherwise, in the entire world.
Think of every economic structure as a diamond. At the bottom is farmers. Farmers grow food that feed everyone, and feeds the food that feeds everyone else, and without them no economy could exist and no other jobs could exist. No food, no people. Think about New York city. They import billions of tons of food a year just to feed their population. If there wasn't billions of tons of food New Yorkers would starve to death.
The second and third component of every economic structure is a bit too intertwined to seperate so we'll handle them both: excess of production in a given area and need created jobs. You need too many farmers so that not everyone has to farm, for example. Fairly simple, but this applies to everything until it reaches its natural conclusion. Too many plumbers so you can have massive infrastructure without everyone having to plumb, too many contract laborers so that not everyone has to do contract laborer, and so on and so forth. But all of these jobs that are necessary create the need for "luxury" positions such as lawyers, doctors, and accountants ("But Doctors are a necessary position!" you might say. They're not, yes a lot of people would die without them but economies wouldn't collapse entirely. Remember economies are relative to their population size, less people to feed less farmers etc., and the revelations of modern medicine are really condensed in the last 80 or so years. Global Economic structures existed without the need of modern medicine for centuries.). These positions aren't necessary but due to the existence of excess in the tier below them they're allowed to exist and make life easier for everyone. Once economies get larger enough you need management, politicians, governments, etc., until you reach the very peak of the diamond at CEOs and leaders of countries. All of this is based on a single thing: food and the shipment thereof.
Now that we have the foundation we can talk about market factors driven by demand. "OMG this is SO LONG" yeah its kind of like economics is complicated and can't be summed up by "Supply and Demand kekw!" After necessities are taken care of in excess the majority of the market will shift towards luxury class items (anything you don't strictly need to survive): computers, phones, games, etc. Luxury items makes up about 90% of the current global economy. And all of that is driven by one thing: Demand. It all relates back to one of the first companies to mass produce refrigerators. See, everyone wanted a refrigerator. Cold storage on demand could extend the shelf life of so many products. Think about milk that doesn't have to be delivered daily! So, everyone buys a refrigerator. What happened to the company once that happened? All of their income dried up and their refrigerators were left on dusty shelves. No more demand, nobody cares about excess supply.
This is why every major company spends millions of dollars every year on advertisement research to convince you to buy items, that you need the latest and greatest. Who cares if your iPhone 7 is in perfect condition, the new iPhone 8 just came out and Chad got it. Its beautiful and makes Chad superior to you. Your wife even thinks Chads hotter than you BECAUSE of that new phone, so you HAVE to get one, etc. Remember the Keurig controversy, or Kapernik on Nike, or Gillette's short film and all the outrage every one of those incidents spawned? Regardless of your belief in the matter of any of those they worked as intended. Everyone was talking about those brands for months. And 78% of the people that boycotted those brands went back and rebought them after a couple months (market research shows). All of this is driven to increase the Demand so they can create a Supply to fill that demand. I always like to say this: it doesn't matter how great of a product you create if no one wants it.
Now, after ALL that how does Tarkov's economies work? Monopolization dictating valuation leading to false consumer confidence. How much is a round of m855a1 worth? 1 Rouble? 1 billion Roubles? Does it relate to any real world economics? Hell no. You think someone tilling a field in Tarkov to make your Iskra Lunch Box? Its not even close to a REAL world economy, at least not one you would want to live in. BSG tell you they're worth $7 USD. They decide whether or not you can craft it, how ubiquitous it is within raids, etc. They set trader limits and refreshes. They tell you what you can buy, for how much, and in what amount. That is called fixed market valuation. A certain supplier controls the majority supply and is able to dictate valuation of that supply by enforcing market forces, generally through violent means (which just means non-consensual not necessarily that people are getting beat up). BSG really does control the cost of EVERYTHING in Tarkov. For example, if they wanted to make the value of Fuel plummet they could just increase the spawn rate. Make the value go up? Decrease the spawn rate. Sound familiar?
Certain things cause false consumer confidence which can drive up the price but doesn't affect true valuation. For example, GPU prices not dropping in tangent with Bitcoin even though they're directly died and the demand of GPUs only goes down over time as consumers finish their farms. But, since Bitcoins was so valuable for so long it makes people believe GPUs are still more valuable so they don't drop quite as fast as they should.
BSG is the great Monopoly of supply and they dictate the value of everything one way or another, even if they removed traders. Why are Slicks valuable? Because they're Class 6 and that's the way they're designed. BSG could cause the value to plummet tomorrow by nerfing armor, etc. They could just decide to give Prapor a trade for 200k at level 4. In so many ways they can change the entire economic structure of Tarkov at will. The best example is the recent Bitcoin nerf that's causing the value of EVERYTHING to drop because people don't have a ridiculous income so they're less confident in their purchases (remember the valuation of any item during that time did not increase, unless BSG increased it, only the perception of the value due to what people were willing to pay).
Is this supply and demand? No. BSG creates the items, decides how much they're worth by both cost and just how useful the item is, and then vendors them to you. The Flea Market is a third party market of scalpers that will rake you over the coals for all they can get regardless of true valuation. Its Ebay, so its driven by factors outside the normal constraints of a regular economy and thus aren't driven by "supply and demand," in the traditional sense.
I'm not going to get into what the Flea Market is and how it ticks here because holy moly this is long as it is and that's a very complicated subject since its driven by a Monopoly of supply and consumer confidence on the otherside creating this weird tangled mess that you can't find replicated in the real world (and you wouldn't want to see it either).
TL;DR BSG's market isn't a true player driven market because BSG dictates supply and, thusly, valuation. Since they don't, traditional "Supply and Demand" in the colloquial sense do not exist and if someone says that then they're just demonstrating their ignorance.
- Severely disappointed with the economy in this game.
- BSG, from a very senior player, please consider consulting your player base before MAJOR quest, or gameplay changes.
- All PVP/Meta-grade items should be FIR only
More about Escape from TarkovPost: "Tarkov isn’t how real Economies work" specifically for the game Escape from Tarkov. Other useful information about this game:
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