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Tradelands Economic Update – October 2022

The month of October ends right in the middle of the annual Halloween Event. This leaves a lot of unfinished trends that will start November with a lot of upward momentum.  While the event didn’t see the same participation as the Purshovian Recession, it did result in a 25% increase in overall economic activity.  There were also two new items that turned out to be quite popular with players.

From October 25 to October 31 we saw a boost in market activity. It’s still not up to the level of the Purshovian Release, but it’s one of the top ranked event of the year so far.

Hot New Items

The event included the release of new items, some of which were in crates while others were through the event itself. The two items that appear to have made a big difference are the Dead Man’s Gargoyle Figurehead and Skelestone. Both of them had IPO‘s after only one week, making them some of the hottest new items on the market.

Dead Man’s Gargoyle Figurehead price is $293,994.73. This is a new item with an IPO of $309k which is in-line with its current price.
Skelestone price is $14,631.06. This is a new item with an IPO of $15,909 which means it’s slightly under performing.

First the Dead Man’s Gargoyle. This is a cosmetic upgrade to the Gargoyle ship that is in hot demand. The interesting thing about this upgrade is the material value of the item is well above what sellers are asking for at the moment. We did the math, assuming the developer’s posted probabilities are accurate, and found the Dead Man’s Gargoyle Upgrade should cost players $1,621,500 dbs.

In other words, that’s how many db’s people are spending to obtain one from a crate on average. It’s no wonder this item is so hot because it’s actually worth five times what people are selling it for right now. If you are able to get your hands on one at or around $300k, you are getting an amazing deal. It will be interesting to see if this item starts to correct its price once the Halloween Event ends.

Skelestone is the other hot item that was released in October. Since no information was revealed, it initially sold according to its cosmetic value until a major market correction brought it back down to $17kpp and it has been falling ever since. As of now, it looks like Skelestone will continue a downward trend, although this can change once the event ends and it becomes unobtainable.

The Market Cap for Skelestone is continuing an upward trend. This is in line with how quickly people can mine it. This type of trend is at high risk to collapse, especially since there is virtually no demand for it right now.

If you are a trader with high volumes of Skelestone, there are two other items that you want to watch that will be indicators of how the material might perform. These are Inyolan Oak and Ice. Both of these materials are limited and have high price fluctuations when they are off sale. One has a known in-game combat effect and the other is purely cosmetic. Once the community discovers if its characteristics include a combat affect or cosmetic only, Skelestons is likely to mimic one of these two materials going forward.

Inyolan Oak has remained fairly steady over time. Fluctuations are more pronounced because the volume of available materials on the market is controlled by a smaller group of players. If Skelestone remains a cosmetic material, long-term trends will look like this.
Ice price fluctuations follow buyer demand. Because it is viewed as a combat material, it tends to lose value over time rather than gain it. When the event refreshes the number of materials on the market, sellers tend to reset the price point at the same time.

Coal Is Falling

Coal is one of two indexes that we know are not representative of the market. The reason they haven’t corrected yet is because players have not added enough new materials to the market to effectively fix it. However, as time goes on we expect to see these correct to a lower price point in the future.

Coal has shifted back to it’s 300 per piece trading price which will eventually influence the index price. However, players haven’t been adding much volume recently, which is why it is still indexed at a higher value.

When we looked into this phenomenon, we determined that this is likely to be a more common occurrence in the future. This is because Premium Coal and regular Coal operate differently in game. The reason this trend didn’t happen in the past was because when a correction happened, there would be an influx of new materials purchased from the Premium Merchant and listed on the market. It looks like there is a preference to actually mine the coal in-game now, which makes indexes slower to respond until the volume of materials are added to the market.

Yellow Ghostship Voucher

Finally, the biggest news of the month comes right at the end with the release of the Ghostship Voucher. Traditionally, F&BP tries to eliminate items which are priced according to cosmetic preferences. Examples include shields and gramophones. We do it this way so players can get a baseline price and determine how much the cosmetic value is worth to them. Essentially, it lets you know how much they are paying for your cosmetic preferences.

The PAR for Vouchers shows a fairly steady price until the release which caused an almost immediate price correction to the tune of $250k in value. This makes vouchers one of the most successful items on the market for sellers.
Ghostship Vouchers price is $751,693.98. This is trending up +19.55%. Ironically, this is in line with the developer’s statement on 11/1 that voucher prices will get a 20% price increase when released. Looks like players did the math correctly.

In the case of Ghost Vouchers, the yellow version costs 40% more than the others. This means the Ghostship Vouchers are about to experience a large increase in their total value. However, at the same time the total Market Capitalization will remain constant, since it only takes half as many vouchers to purchase the same ships. In other words, Market Cap is the measure of success on this item right now, not the price point showing on the price guide.

The sudden spike at the end of the month corresponds with the release of the Reaper, as well as the introduction of the Yellow Ghostship Voucher.

For the record, the price guide was updated on October 27th to show the price point for the Yellow Ghostship Voucher and the other versions will be normalized (reduce the price by 40% to see the prices of other ghostship vouchers). Also, we calculated the material value of the yellow voucher and learned that it is worth $475k. That means if you have the Robux to spend, you will make a good return on these in the long term, especially if you can sell it for the projected $1M price point. However, we are already seeing players in game recognize this and prices are starting to fall.

Demand of vouchers briefly exceeded supply when the Reaper went on sale. It looks like the market has finally picked up. If prices fall to a point where players can afford it, the unfulfilled demand will drop again.

The reason for this misalignment is due to players not understanding demand. In cases like this where a premium item is on sale, the price of the item usually matches the value of the item. This is what we saw with Skelestone and the Dead Man’s figureheads. Then, once the item goes off-sale and becomes exclusive, the cost reaches a premium price point.

Traders are trying to sell yellow vouchers as if they are already off-sale, which is causing their value to plummet. This is a case where they are trying to get short-term gains at the expense of long-term profitability. If they would just hold onto their vouchers instead of immediately trading them, sellers would have control of the market and the price of a voucher would have been as high as $1.3M going into the winter months.

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