EVE Online Economy


eve online economy and merchantsThere is a single currency unit in Eve Online, the Interstellar Kredit (ISK), which takes its name from the Icelandic króna, whose ISO code is ISK. Players can barter between themselves for items, use the in-game market system for ISK-based transactions, place and accept contracts between players for assets and services or use a Loyalty Points store.

The Loyalty Points systems allows one to use non-transferable Loyalty Points in combination with other assets to purchase standard items at a reduced rate or to acquire otherwise unattainable items.

A large proportion of the in-game economy is player driven; Non-player character merchants supply some basic blueprints, items and trade goods. Players, through the use of blueprints and in-game skills, can gain the ability to build items ranging from basic ammunition to cutting-edge capital ship hulls, and manufacture them for personal use or for sale. Pricing and availability of goods varies from region to region within the Eve universe. These aspects contribute to an economic environment influenced by factors like scarcity of resources, specialization of labor and supply/demand dynamics. The economy is closely tied with the (also player driven) political aspect of the game. Player corporations (the Eve equivalent of guilds) rise and fall as they struggle for market dominance as well as territorial control.

eve online isk currencyFrom a technical point of view, the economy in Eve is known as an open economy, that is there is no fixed amount of money or materials in the universe. CCP did attempt to implement a closed economy (that is an economy where there is a fixed amount of currency and therefore materials) early on in the game's existence; however, it proved too difficult to balance the effects of new players entering the game with the capabilities of older players able to earn more ISK or obtain more materials. The current Open economy is automatically balanced by introducing extra materials in underpopulated areas to encourage an even spread of players.

Eve's End User Licence Agreement forbids the exchange of ISK for real currency; however there is a secure in-game system for trading "Game Time Codes" (GTC) in exchange for in game currency. In a similar way selling and buying characters for in game currency is allowed.

On 27 June 2007 CCP announced that an economist had been employed to assist in the development of the economic side of the game. Dr. Eyjo Guðmundsson has stated that he will be responsible for compiling quarterly economic reports for the community and providing ongoing analysis of the economic facets of Eve, along with coordinating research with other interested parties.

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