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Thursday, December 1, 2011

PI tax rates have nothing to do with smelly-fish explanations.

So yeah, I noticed the PI tax rates were far higher than CCP lead us to initially believe they would be. Jester has a fine rundown on it here. It cost me 4 million ISK last night to do my PI with my projected revenue at 11 million ISK (6 wetware mainframes produced x 1.8 million ISK each.) I did not file a petition about it. I'm not a whiner.

Evidently many did. Here is CCP Guard's response. The part in this that really got my attention was this:
"By repairing the taxes to be... a) Based on market value"

Look CCP, I really don't mind you killing off the 99% profit margin. I felt like I was getting away with robbery anyway - not that I was complaining. But you base taxes on TODAY'S market rate? That doesn't work. We don't sell our PI goods every day. Hell, I don't sell them every week even. Here is the problem. What if the price drops before I bring my goods to market? My effective tax rate will be even higher than you state. Yes, it is true that if prices go up after I manufacture something I'll make a better margin. So I should wait, right?

Fine, I'll wait. That creates a whole new problem: artificial lack of supply. If I wait, everyone will wait. The markets will dry up. That should make prices rise no doubt. It will also mess with a whole lot of other game features making them unfeasible. If Wetware Mainframes aren't on the market, who's going to build all those Customs Offices your so keen on? Did you think of that? What about all those other things that need Wetware Mainframes? You're jerking the market around badly and for what? So some Empire Carebears like me can't make 99% profit? Hey, I wasn't making that much profit to begin with but I'll cover that in more depth below.

I can't believe you ran this past an economist. You can base a sales tax on current prices because it is assessed when the item is sold. You cannot charge a lift service fee based on current prices for goods that might not go to market for weeks. That's a completely unfair tax!

One other thing, how do you calculate the current market price? We all know that the Eve market is gamed to death. Buy prices are always set way low by people trying to scam other people. Sell prices are often inflated. Median, mean and average barely mean anything on Eve's markets. I see a lot of problems with this if your calculation doesn't weed out the out-layers. Does it? I think you owe us a more in depth explanation. I want the details if I'm going to have to live with this arbitrary and capricious tax.

Now I'll take issue with this part of the post:
"With the old tax levels it would be nearly unfeasible to operate a Customs Office and most of our goals with the feature were at risk of being missed."
I think what you really mean is:
"We needed a mechanism to force players into destroying NPC Customs Offices and replacing them with player built Customs Offices. Therefore, we set an unbearable tax rate to encourage that behavior."
Did I miss the mark by much? You know, if you'd just come out and be honest about it I'd probably respect that line of reasoning. I am, after all, a realist. Why does CCP still feel like they have to lie to us about their motives?

Now, let's talk about that bit above concerning not making all that much ISK to begin with. I find it hard to believe that CCP was all that concerned with high-sec carebears making tons of ISK from PI. Are you serious? My PI chain makes 6 Wetware Mainframes a day. That was less than 6 million ISK a day before the Crucible speculation started. That's all my planets can handle. They don't produce enough level 1 resources for more than that. THAT was our penalty for taking no risks.We got far less ISK for the same amount of work. I've scanned wormhole and low-sec planets. Wormhole worlds produce so many more resources than that it isn't even funny. They gush with ISK potential but there is also great risk.

How can you tell me with a straight face that you were really all that concerned with high-sec carebears making low risk ISK? Get real, you'd already clamped down on that ISK faucet by giving us resource poor planets. BTW, I can make 6 million ISK a day mining in Empire, with little risk, and at a 99% profit margin. BTW, I can run missions in Empire, with little risk, and at a 99% profit margin. BTW, I made 100 milion ISK from Datacores last night, with little risk, and 99% profit. Your rationale stinks of rotten fish.

No, this tax thing has nothing to do with high-sec carebear profits. It has to do with making low-sec more valuable and re-configuring null-sec sovereignty mechanics. Those are the squeaky wheels these days. They have been for a very long time. That is what these changes are really about but for some reason you won't admit it CCP. You expect us carebears to just go about our business. We don't squeak. Evidently, we just take it.

Fly careful.

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