Tuesday, 7 June 2011

There are No Non-Starters

I found out recently that the term "non-starter" does not apply to Meeroos. With the exception of special Meeroos, like the Clover Open Beta gift Meeroo, you can get any Meeroo from a Nest bought from the Official Meeroos store. It only applies to released genetics of course but it means any Meeroo you can breed you also stand a chance, however small, of getting directly from the store.

I get the feeling some people are not pleased about it. I think many of us, myself included, have fallen into a trap of thinking that breedable pets have to be implemented in specific ways and have to do, or not do, certain things. Meeroos are challenging a lot of those assumptions. The sixty (60) day breeding period instead of a set number of offspring per Meeroo is very different, and it took a lot of us off guard. In practice I have not encountered any problems with it so far. While I was not enchanted with the idea at first; I accept now that it has pluses and minuses, and the pros are starting to outweigh the cons. More on that in another post. My point is: Malevay Studios is trying a different, new type, of breedable. There are going to be new concepts and they can be scary at first. Without change nothing would ever improve. Will having all traits available in starter Nests be an improvement? I think it could be.

Having the full genetic pool available in starter Nests provides a sort of pressure release valve for the secondary marketplace. Since all genetics are in the store there is always the chance of buying enough Nests to get one close enough. However that is probably impractical, especially if it is a rare Meeroo and you are on a limited budget. What it does mean is that anybody could get one, no matter how rare. Not only mega-breeders are selling uncommon Meeroos. People who started yesterday have the chance to birth a Koi Meeroo, right now.  Maybe they want to sell it, maybe without a monopoly on the market, they do not mind offering their Meeroo for a reasonable price. I am sure that some of the avatars who receive amazing second generation Meeroos will. If it works like I hope it does the open-genetics approach should moderate the extreme high end of the market.

I love that anybody has the same chance when they take the stroll [TP] over to one of the Meeroos stores to buy a Nest. If you have a hundred (100) Meeroos or none, when you buy that Nest it could be anything. It is like a classic mystery box that can contain any aspect of the game, in this case any type of Meeroo. Sure the players with more Meeroos can gain an advantage through breeding, that is part of the game as well. Through breeding you can create the exact Meeroo you want, over time, with a lot of effort (and fun!) At the store you can roll the dice and see what you get. Maybe something ordinary, maybe something amazing. For me it means, when I am out pricing Nests, I will balance the prices for known genetics against taking the risk on unknown genetics in the store.

I understand that for some people the open-genetics model is less than desirable. Especially for those who believe they need to protect their breeding lines. To them I would say: the rare breeds are going to be rare until, if possible, breeders establish genetic lines that consistently produce them. Then they will not be so rare anymore. A few people getting ultra-rare Meeroos from the store is not going to sway that balance much. Maybe not even enough to dampen exorbitant prices, as I hope it does. If you have, or are establishing, breeding lines now; they are still a worthwhile investment. The best way to somewhat predictably produce uncommon trait Meeroos is through breeding. Buying a Nest from the store is a random chance, nothing you could build a reliable business model on. Every now-and-then though, someone, maybe someone very new or someone about to loose heart, will coax a miracle Meeroo from a starter Nest. In my view that can only be good for Meeroos and for the community at large.

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1 comment:

  1. I agree mostly. The Meeroos are doing things differently which is like you said scary for some, exciting for others. I like that they are doing that, at first it makes you turn your head and wonder.

    Like when KittyCats made their 'starters' no transfer. A lot of people were put off about it but many have come to really appreciate it as it keeps the market from being flooded by tons of starters out of the gate.

    Companies like Meeroos and KittyCats (I have both) to me are thinking far beyond the typical breedable road. (kittycats with perma pet, sim wide food, lightning quick updates and more) Meeroos with all you mentioned and the concept both companies have of "never being done"... makes them exciting.

    (Yes I just attended the SL8B talk where both were on a panel)

    Thanks for your great blog! Keep it up!