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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Will the Technetium Cartel work?

"I'll miss the sea, but a person needs new experiences. They jar something deep inside, allowing him to grow. Without change something sleeps inside us, and seldom awakens. The sleeper must awaken." - Duke Leto Atreides
The news is all over the EvE blog-o-sphere so I won't re-quote it here. The question is, will the Technetium Cartel work? Is this a well calculated move on the market that will make Goonswarm Federation even richer? Will it attain their goals - market domination? Or, is it an amateurishly naive ploy doomed to fail because Goonswarm cannot grasp the true scope and complexity of the EvE economy?

At face value, having an overwhelming monopoly on Technetium seems to be an unassailable position. It goes into the production of so many things, virtually all Tech 2 (T2) items, that it seems the EvE universe must capitulate or die. What melodramatic bumblebee shit!

They are not eliminating the Technetium from the market. They are only driving the prices up. They are exerting monopolistic pressures on the market that, in the short term, will be painful to bare. But as prices adjust to the new supply level the market will normalize. Production of T2 items will not cease. They will only become more expensive.

The rising expense of Tech 2 items will cause them to loose their luster so to speak. Pilots will begin to look elsewhere to achieve their fits. Some will call T1 items good enough and pick their fights more carefully. In fact, it is my understanding that many PvPers already do this to a degree. It simply makes sense to reduce the cost of one's at-risk assets when you know they are going to be put at severe risk.

Other players will turn to faction modules. How many of you noted this item in the Escalation to Inferno details?
"A lot of modules have been added to the market that previously could only be found in Contracts. Mostly these are officer, deadspace, faction and storyline modules. Note that this only means that players can now buy and sell them between themselves."
This will make the move to faction modules very easy. An increase in T2 prices will make faction modules even more desirable. T2 is currently the poor man's faction module if you would. They are used because they are cost effective. Take away that cost effectiveness and many pilots won't have to make the choice. They'll go faction every time.

Lastly, there is Tech 3 (T3.) It depends entirely on Worm Hole derived materials. T3 cruisers are not cheap and a lot of players pass them up for the more cost effective T2 ships and fits. When those ships no longer are cost effective alternatives, those pilots will no longer have such a hard choice to make. Faction fit T3 cruisers for everyone!

So all the fears of doom and gloom are completely unfounded. We have alternatives and, just like in the real world, when the cost of a commodity exceeds the cost of its alternatives, the alternatives will see higher adoption rates. If you'd like a real world example, look to the tar sands of Canada. Extracting oil from the medium was, for a very long time, cost prohibitive. Then the price of crude oil went over $100 a barrel. Ask a Canadian what they're doing now, hey.

So kick back and enjoy the show. Make some wise market buys and reap the rewards. In a few months it will all be over and life in New Eden will have its new normal - whether that's T1, faction or T3 based is a guessing game at this point. One thing's for certain though, the Goons have miscalculated once again and the sleeper[1] will awaken.

Fly careful.

[1] That's a hint of where I think this will go. *wink*


  1. So you think if a T2 module goes from, say, 1.5 to 6mil (a 4x price hike, unlikely) that people will instead lump for the faction items, at about 20-30mil each, to save money? Not to mention what will happen to faction items if there is a run on them. There's a reason why one deadspace shield booster is 350mil and the other ones 20mil - demand.

    And you also think T2 ships like logistics, HACS, bombers, etc, that see heavy PVP use, will disappear if their hull goes from 200 to 300mil?

    There are edge cases (Nomens in place of zealots, SFIs in place of Vagas) - but again, if the demand in the faction variant spikes the price will MUCH faster than this manipulation of the T2 prices.

    You need to think these numbers through.

    I remember when you said the ice bubble was finished, on day two.

    1. Yeah, I remember that too. 8p I also know that the Goons took a really big hit in the wallet on that one. The finances of it didn't pan out and there was some "discussion" about it within the alliance. That could explain the leadership changes happening at the same time as this. That is pure speculation on my part but I do know there were those in Goons that really didn't like the outcome of that Ice interdiction.

      I guess we'll have to wait and see won't we.

    2. You need a source on this.

      The goons made countless billions from the Ice interdiction, since, you know, they bought a lot of that shit before it spiked.

      Their leadership changes have had nothing to do with the ice interdiction.

  2. Thanks for having a clear head to speculate about this topic and thank you so so so much for the Dune quotes :)

  3. They are exerting monopolistic pressures on the market that, in the short term, will be painful to bare.

    This is true. They will also be painful to bear. :)


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