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Apr 06, 2011



Some press has come out. See this Washington Post article.

Vili's own summary.

Interesting that he's brought in stuff such as Facebook likes as part of the virtual economy. I never thought of that before but, on reflection, it sure makes sense to me.


Thank you so very much for sharing this, it was very informative.


Some EA game designer friends of mine had picked up on this (from Kotaku via Ars Technica) and found the fact that there had been a World Bank sponsored study of goldfarming ridiculous.

Personally, I found it totally fascinating and I'm very surprised that developers would think research like this is silly. I'm looking forward to reading it. I wonder if Lehdonvirta considered the likelihood of next generation MMORPGs having mechanisms that removes the market for gold buying altogether?


Ted, thanks for your kind words. Many thanks are of course due to you for laying the foundation.

Marcus, I can understand your designer friends' reactions if they only saw the Ars Technica and Kotaku articles. That was some creative reporting. Ars Technica said we're suggesting that NGOs should promote gold farming, and Kotaku claims the Bank wants to create a fair trade market for farmed gold. Both claims are untrue, which is apparent if you read the actual report -- but I understand most people won't be able to do that, since it's long. The Economist's Schumpeter provided a short but more accurate summary:

As for future prospects, I agree that new game designs are making gold farmers increasingly unnecessary. What's interesting, though, is that new opportunities simultaneously appear in the more widely conceived virtual economy.


Thanks for the reply & economist link Vili. A much better read!


After reading a great deal about virutal economics and the impact that social media has had on it, the masterful overview has been a great read.

Isla Pergola

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