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chapter on markets and resources: 4/28/2021 18:51:21

Parsifal
Level 61
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I wrote another chapter to the guide. Mostly about selling resources.

https://justpaste.it/2ifol


any comments? thoughts? corrections?


The chapter is also accessible via the guide: https://justpaste.it/4hsdo


Cheers

Edited 5/5/2021 10:05:35
chapter on markets and resources: 4/28/2021 22:25:20

Dj Storm
Level 58
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Regarding income from ores: your guide doesn't mention return-on-investment on mine upgrades. Look on upgrades as investments, calculate after how much time the increased output, if sold, covers the cist of the upgrade. The calculation is very tedious, a spreadsheet helps but still need lots of work transcribing prices.
Also, in your example, copper sells for 0.02 wollars, however I found maps where the actual price is 0.015, throwing off your calculations by 25%.
I used to calculate increased profit per second for each upgrade, multiply it by 100000 for easier calculation, giving me profit per ~28 hours (*86400 for 1 day), and decide if it's worth the investment, given how long I think I have until completing the map.
However, I rarely (read: never) sell ores. 100M copper takes a week to stockpile, and selling it gives ~20M, which usually is the income for 10 seconds, by the time I get it. Not worth.
Pricier ores are a significant income source, however most of them are required for the tech tree. Even if you completed the tech tree, one or two smelters are enough to smelt all your top recipes, so if the alloy is profitable, it makes sense to smelt instead of sell.
Regarding upgrading mines, for most maps I find myself upgrading mines for a specific ore needed for a more complex alloy needed for the tech tree - like upgrading uranium mines for terbium bars.

Regarding alloys:
Your "smelters needed for profit" doesn't make sense. Every smelter adds profit. In your example, your copper production is worth 13 wollars/second, and each smelters increases it by 6 wollars/second. Needed statistics are:
- number of smelters that can be supplied; however this is a tricky statistic, your copper production can keep 9 smelters running, but if you want to smelt silver, it uses the same copper ore. You might be able to supply 9 copper smelters, or 2 silver smelters, but not both.
- for the tech tree, time needed to gather the ores for smelting the required bars. You might complete a map and find you need several millions of a few ores, needing quite a few days of grinding. That moment you want to know which mines to upgrade in order to decrease grinding time ( actually which ore needs an increase in production, from there which mine gives the highest production income for your money). Tricky, especially when more ores are needed, and a mine might upgrade production of 2 needed ores, making it the best option even if it's not the best for one ore taken separately.
chapter on markets and resources: 4/28/2021 22:47:18

dwaynerudd 
Level 59
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if you invest ap in the increase ore sell price, you get to a point where making alloys always costs money, and then selling ores is very profitable. by the time I reach the end of a level, I'll have a couple smelters and crafters going for really profitable items, but most of my ore is sold every hour or two to finance mercs. in fact, I sell ores before the end of a level too. I'll sell 10% or so of every ore and invest in mine upgrades a couple times a day
chapter on markets and resources: 4/28/2021 22:56:19

Dj Storm
Level 58
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For alloys, selling them bring in significantly less money than selling items on a typical map. I rarely resort to selling alloys, limiting such sales to top alloys, not needed for the tech tree or for items.

For items, a desperately needed statistic is market based profit: buy the alloys, craft and sell the items. A few months ago, most single alloy items were market-based profitable, now few are. Once you unlock such a recipe (get both the recipe and the markets supplying the alloys), it is recommended to let your crafters not working for the tech tree, work your best market-based recipe to make you money.
Some recipes will become obsolete. For example, you need copper wire, and you need a crafter to work for 8 hours for 1k copper wire (let's assume you have the copper bars, or copper ore and smelters working on it). You might prefer letting your crafter create structs, or exploding bolts for 2-3 hours on bought alloys, sell the items and use the profit to buy 1k copper wire, freeing your crafter for the remaining 5-6 hours, freeing your smelters to work on better alloys, and leaving you with ore you can use for silver bars (or other top alloy).

Regarding your recommendation of smelting your most profitable alloy: my recommendation, until you found all the recipes needed for the tech tree, is not to waste your ore for short term profit. You might find that the dysprosium recipe requires 1.13M aluminum ore which you used on bars/welding rods, and now you need 5 days to get the aluminum for your 8 dysprosium bars - a bitter situation, worse if you already have the needed yttrium and dysprosium ores.
chapter on markets and resources: 4/29/2021 00:42:12

Phoenix
Level 19
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What the hell is "Smelters needed for profit"??? If a recipe is profitable, then running any number of smelters means profit. It's impossible that some recipe is only profitable if you selected it in some minimum number of smelters. Either it is profitable or not. There is no in between. If you put such numbers into a guide, at least explain them! Because this number might have some meaning, just not this way.
chapter on markets and resources: 4/29/2021 06:44:45

Parsifal
Level 61
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@Dj storm @Phoenix
you are correct on pointing out the problem with "Smelters needed for profit". I got confused with my own calculations. I omitted the section.
I'm still struggling to understand, why copper ore gives twice profit/sec than copper alloy. Either my calculation are wrong, or I'm making the wrong conclusion.

@Dj storm
my copper sells for 0.02W. I can't do much about it - it's a fact. Don't expect sell prices to be the same on all maps and for all players. Take your buffs into consideration. I merely shared my market numbers from a specific map.

You might complete a map and find you need several millions of a few ores - that won't happen if you upgrade your Statistics to the max

about upgrading mines, you are correct - I need to address it in the page
chapter on markets and resources: 4/30/2021 03:57:03

Dj Storm
Level 58
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@Parsifal
I have max statistics, I know from the start what alloys and items are needed for the tech tree. I don't know which alloys and items will be buyable from markets, I'm sure the last ones won't be available.
For top items, the required alloys are always available at the markets, those won't get me stuck.
Top alloys require some top ores (which usually remain the same from map to map) and lots of a lesser ore (which usually varies). I won't know which ore is required until I get the recipe, a feat that usually happens during the accelerated mercenary based endgame. If that lesser ore happens to be one I used up, I have to wait until my mines produce enough to smelt the alloys. It happened to me to sell the items for trillions, buy 50 billion mercenaries, get another 50 billion from caches and drafts, conquer the last 150 territories and find out I need 1M+ aluminum to smelt erbium, of which I needed 5, had the erbium and terbium ores (erbium from mining and not being used elsewhere, terbium from not smelting terbium bars buut buying or finding the alloys in caches), and missing the aluminum ore which I used up to make alloys and items.

Also, regarding copper price, if the shown price is 0.02, the real price can be anywhere between 0.015 and 0.024999. I played a map with a copper ore price of 0.02, got the two techs for +30% ore selling price which should have set the price to 0.026, but the displayed price was still 0.02. Investigated and found out that the base sell price was 0.015, displayed higher due to rounding.

Regarding copper ore being more profitable than copper alloys: you have 7 mines mining copper ore, and since they are the cheapest to upgrade, you upgraded to level 10+ each. The base output for unupgraded mines is about 3/second for each ore, but for copper you had 100 times that. It's like having 700 basic mines providing copper ore for 13/second profit - if they had been unupgraded, the copper production would sell for 0.06/second (3 ores/second @0.02). Each smelter adds 6 wollars/second value by smelting the copper ore into bars. The problem is smelters are few and unupgradable, and you don't have enough smelters to process all the copper ore your upgraded mines make. If you need 15 smelters, and have 15 smelters to produce copper bars, your profit changes from 13/second from ore selling to 15*6=90/second from selling alloys - each smelter converting ore worth 0.90/s into alloy worth 6.90/s, a sevenfold increase, still a meager 6.00/s profit.

I would like a statistic which tells me how many smelters can I run with the current ore production (with decimals if possible). Then I can distribute my smelters to work my top recipes. The problem is, for example, if my ore production supplies 0.2 erbium smelters, 0.3 terbium smelters and 0.5 uranium smelters, I cannot assign a smelter to these 3 recipes, because erbium bars used up my terbium ore, making said statistic irrelevant.
chapter on markets and resources: 4/30/2021 17:23:08

Phoenix
Level 19
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Warning: somewhat off-topic
I would like a statistic which tells me how many smelters can I run with the current ore production (with decimals if possible). Then I can distribute my smelters to work my top recipes. The problem is, for example, if my ore production supplies 0.2 erbium smelters, 0.3 terbium smelters and 0.5 uranium smelters, I cannot assign a smelter to these 3 recipes, because erbium bars used up my terbium ore, making said statistic irrelevant.

That's why I would love to have some sort of Auto-Scripting advancement. Instead of all the Auto-Something advancements I would like to be able to unlock a feature, where I can script an automation. I know, not everyone can code and such a feature would put non-coders in a disadvantage. but if you can code and the game would offer an official API/interface, you could in theory define yourself when you want to smelt/craft/upgrade/conquer what. That would be way superior to any existing Auto-advancement. Auto-Smelt is ridiculous for the exact reasons you outlined. Auto-Upgrade Mine would always upgrade the wrong mines altogether and is only in phase 3 (I haven't upgraded the first mine beyond level 8 or so in all the levels I played so far and nowadays I stop upgrading mines even earlier, Auto-Upgrade Mine would almost max out certain early mines and waste a lot of money).

And - and here is the link back to the general problem we players have regularly - this API would probably grant us access to more exact numbers, too.
chapter on markets and resources: 4/30/2021 18:51:22


Master Jz 
Level 62
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I'd love an API. I can grab the displayed rounded numbers with a userscript and get approximate numbers. However, it's not a very user friendly way to go.
chapter on markets and resources: 5/5/2021 10:06:02

Parsifal
Level 61
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Ok, I have completely rewritten the page

https://justpaste.it/2ifol


any thoughts?
chapter on markets and resources: 5/5/2021 12:32:03

Phoenix
Level 19
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A few thoughts:

  • Check the Statistics Levels! You claim that all the statistics menus require to max out the advancement although most statistics are unlocked earlier on. Only needing Level 3 instead of Level 4 makes the difference of only needing 300 APs vs 500 APs. That makes a huge difference for new players and your whole guide is targeting new-ish players.
  • What is the reason to make new players bother with all those late game recipes? Can't you break this concept down to a more newbie-friendly level? (Okay, to clarify this, yes your guide is meant as a general guide, not only for new players, but I feel that most advanced players won't really need your guide anyways, so you're again stuck with the new players that want to learn something they don't know already. For them, it would be way better, if your guide could use relatable game play situations and not screenshots from 6 months into WZI. As sad as it may be, a good portion of player will never get to see these items with their own eyes because they've quit playing WZI before that point already)
  • I don't know how to improve this, but the chapter seems to not follow some narrative. It's more like a thrown together pile of unsorted facts.
  • Your conclusion is fine, but some of the advises seem to come from nowhere.
  • I know the situation, too, that you might never be able to create some alloys/items over the course of a level, but with this in mind, my conclusion is to sell as little as possible, for the off chance, that I need something valuable for some recipe I haven't discovered yet (whether I have to produce this for some tech or not). Therefore, I don't see ores (and to lesser extend also alloys and items) as value but as tools. Hence, I would have constructed the whole chapter differently, but that is just personal style of playing. But in case I actually produce for money, you covered a good basis of the subject.
  • I don't really see what a new player should take away from this. There is no general rule of thumb a new player could apply. It's more a "look at all the numbers and see if you get what the game wants to tell you"-statement.
  • What would have been perfect for this chapter of your guide, is an analysis whether unlocking techs gets you anything if you already have the Tech Achievement. Because if you play a level for the first time, you might want the achievement or if not you can still use the techs as a guidance through the new level. But what if I don't need the techs. Is unlocking them profitable? That is a interesting economy question, isn't it?
  • You totally neglected Markets. It's always more profitable to produce the whole chain of intermediate steps yourself in order to produce some complex item (if you neglect the fact that all but one asset of yours could work on profitable recipes themselves instead of supplying the complex recipe). But they are an essential part of the Smelting/Crafting-Economy nonetheless. With my current artifacts/advancements/style of playing I haven't found a single level where relying on Markets has proven to be more profitable, but they still exist.
  • There are recipes with four ingredients? Oh my, I thought they were capped at three... But at most a month from now and I would have learned this anyways.


This all comes down to the question: Do you want to write a guide? Then you have to have some applicable advise. Or are you working on a replacement for the (non-existing) idle wiki? Then collecting all thiose facts is the way to go, but you should leave the conclusion to the reader.
chapter on markets and resources: 5/5/2021 14:01:45

Parsifal
Level 61
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@Phoenix, take a big breath and relax.
If you "learned nothing" from my writing, then you have really no reason to comment and agressively attack me.
You are also very welcome to write a "better" guide yourself.
I don't do it for money, and don't have a purpose of labeling my writing under a "wiki-page" or a "guide" category.
It took me days to gather the information and to put all the images together. And if at least one player, beginner or advanced, can benefit from my work, then it was all worth it.
My next guide is going to be on good manners, you should check it out.
chapter on markets and resources: 5/5/2021 15:49:34


krinid 
Level 60
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Just treat it as 1 guy's opinion on how to play Idle. There are lots of assumptions that were made in making the recommendations (which Adv are in play, etc) and obviously strong influence of personal opinion such as "Active artifacts are useless", etc ... and I don't agree with them all (I love Quad Strike, I maxed out IAP, I don't prioritize Army Camp Upgrade Discounts, I prioritized Additional Mercs over Merc Discount, etc). But I think a new player could still benefit from some of this info. Some people prefer to play with no info, and only learn as they play. Fizzer seems to like that approach, as he tends to not reveal much about the game and prefers players figure stuff out themselves. There are some games where I'm good with that approach (it is kind of exciting, but it comes at a cost), but not with WZI where "learning" could take 6+ months and then you realize you realize that there were much better/efficient ways of playing that would have put your progress significantly farther with the same effort over the same time. I wish I could go back to when I started and give myself this guide. Even if I don't follow the recommendations, the info provided would help me better make my own decisions on how I want to play.

If nothing else, learning about the artifacts and advancements, and the presence of Ascending vs replaying over and over, these alone are useful and I wish I know that when I started.

In the end, I think we all agree that there is no single best way to play Idle. Or minimally, we all agree that even if there is one (there isn't), we don't all agree on what it is. (;

I agree that there are of course areas that could be improved with the guide - and he's still working on it, so just give constructive feedback and let him work on it.
chapter on markets and resources: 5/5/2021 16:23:42

Phoenix
Level 19
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TL;DR: You asked for feedback and I provided some! If you don't want feedback, then don't ask. I only read your chapter because I had already commented in this thread and I only commented because I wanted to contribute my share to improve your work.



Okay, if my response sounded aggressive to you, that was really not my intention. I thought those points were reasonable and constructive criticism. I don't want to repeat them one by one, but for example, each time you mention the Statistic advancement, you point to Level 4 and for most of the Statistics that you presented in this chapter, it is simply not necessary to have Level 4. For all the statistics you listed here Level 3 should be sufficient. That is no opinion of mine or to attack you. That is just a fact and you got that one wrong.

As I wrote somewhere else, I appreciate every effort that is spent towards making the game more accessible to new players. Or advanced players for that matter. But than either do it right (and I can see that it is almost impossible to produce a perfectly flawless piece of advise from the get-go) or accept that someone points out if you did something wrong. Because spreading false information doesn't help anyone.

Yes, I would play the game differently, and in fact I do. But that doesn't mean that your guide or your approach to the levels is wrong. And I only mentioned once that your approach isn't the one I use. But yet again, what is the purpose of your chapter? What should be the take away? Seriously! That is still a question I have. And it might be as simple as that you weren't able to communicate to me whatever your intention was. I value the time you spent writing this, but in the end, I don't see that this chapter (in its current form) serves many players. If your conclusion was e.g. "For profit, only craft items that have exactly one alloy as its sole ingredient, the others aren't profitable or too complex", that would be totally fine (wasn't that more or less even part of your first version?). This would still be just one opinion but it would be something I could have "learned" from your chapter. But I've read the whole thing (twice in fact to write my feedback) and I can't see how any player would apply this to their playing style. Everyone, feel free to correct me. Point out something you learned and how it changed the way you approach a level, and prove me wrong.

I won't write a guide myself because I don't think other players would profit from how I play the levels. I think everyone should discover the game on their own and find what works best for them. If someone would want to compile a wiki, I'd probably contribute something. That was the reason why I asked if this was meant as a wiki-replacement. First you say, every level is different, then you spend pages with images from one specific level. That is no general piece of advise then and therefore more suitable for a wiki. What I can learn from this is that if I play this specific level, I will know all the recipes. Unless they change with the next update that re-generates all the maps.

In the end, I hadn't intended to attack you. If this was the impression you got, I'm sorry. This was meant as constructive feedback only. If you don't value my feedback, that's totally fine, too.

PS: Funny, that you picked the word "better" to quote my post (first, I wasn't even sure if I used it at all). That was the one word I considered to replace with something different. But I couldn't think of something more fitting there.
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