Thursday, March 6, 2008

EverQuest is not a game; it is a world with its own economy

People do not play EverQuest they live it. Seeing as you can be whatever they want to be in the game it makes sense that people want to play. It is a great way to escape from the humdrum of everyday life, a bad day at work, or the expectations of your family. You have the control in the game and can be everything you are not in real life. As you are dealing with other people you can form friendships, and other relationships.

At this point there is a barter system economy going on in EverQuest. Dave Becker has written an article “EverQuest”, spins its own economy discussing how big that economy actually is and its impact on the real world. Currently people are selling items within the EverQuest system with actual cash transactions and items being sold on auction sites and other online shops. There has been talk of allowing real pre-existing online specialty stores to create a store in EverQuest were people can purchase items and then have the product in the game and shipped to them in real life. I do know that there are quite a few existing shops such as Medieval Magic, Boots by Bohemond, Drakyl's Chainmail Designs, Thak the Blacksmith & Armourer and Lost Legends Art that would fit right in with out any changes and would love to be able to sell directly on EverQuest. I even know someone who is thinking about creating a persona or avatar to do Tarot Readings on EverQuest. They do it professionally right now, but only reach so many people in there area. EverQuest would be a much larger market for them and they can do the readings right there in the game, no messing around with long distance phone calls or web cams.

This is a serious business opportunity and those with the smarts are going to find away to take advantage of this open marketplace. I am hoping that EverQuest will follow through and allow people to open stores to sell directly on EverQuest, so that they can have some type of control of who is selling what. They could even charge the shopkeepers rent every month. I know that I would go for that; I think it would add to the game. It would be kind of interesting to be able to buy something on a game, and then have the actual item in your home as well. At this point a lot of sales are going on around EverQuest, through deals made on EverQuest and then actual cash payment through online payment systems like Paypal. As much as some people do not like it, EverQuest does have an economy and it is having an impact on the world outside of EverQuest.

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