Yohoho! Puzzle Pirates has a very large and complex economy, which is driven by shoppe and stall owners competing for commodities harvested across an ocean. The products shoppes produce are crucial to a pirate's daily activities, thus the economy is based on the economic theory of supply and demand.
Commodities and labor Edit
All finished goods are produced using commodities. Commodities fall under many different categories, but certain categories of commodities are required to produce certain categories of goods (i.e. all swords (except for the foil) require minerals but many of the products will need many different commodities of different types).
All shoppe products also require labor to be manufactured. On subscriber oceans, this labor is provided by subscribed pirates; on doubloon oceans, a player needs a labor badge to provide work. Labor is provided by playing the appropriate crafting puzzle, though only alchemistry, blacksmithing, distilling, shipwrightery and weaving are currently available to play. You can still take a job at a tailor or furnisher, but there is currently no puzzle for them; all labor for those shops must happen automatically.
Trading commodities Edit
It is also important for a pirate to be able to trade with their fellow pirates. Buying and selling goods can both help shop owners, stall owners, and sea dogs alike. While stall and shop owners need to buy commodities to make products for their customers, pirates need to have easy access to rum and cannonballs for their pillages. And if a pirate happens to come upon some sugarcane or some wood, they might want to sell them to a shop or stall owner at an island.
Inflation and deflation Edit
The monetary unit in Yohoho! Puzzle Pirates is a piece of eight (PoE). Over time, the purchasing power of PoE fluctuates. This behaviour is not determined by any intervention of the Ringers, but rather the game's economy reacting to variances in the money supply.
PoE enters the economy from PoE fountains (e.g., from brigands, skellies, Atlantis, Haunted seas, Cursed Isles and the navy). Goods enter the economy from merchant brigands, market bidding, and in the case of gold nuggets and fruit, foraging. A small amount of money may also enter the game by Ocean Masters sponsoring tournaments or other events, or when players challenge NPPs and win their bets. PoE circulates within the economy from player to player via wages for labor, trade between players, shoppe purchases, wagers, tournaments, special events, and other means.
Eventually, PoE leaves the economy via PoE sinks, which consist of: taxes (which are split between the island's governor and the PoE sink), market bidding, war chests, portrait fees, drinks for the old salts, housing, and lost bets to NPPs. Commodities are removed from the ocean through commodity sinks, such as when items dust or are consumed in the case of rum being drunk on a voyage, cannon balls being fired in combat, or ships sinking as the result of a blockade or war.
As there are distinct sources and sinks for PoE and commodities, whether the economy is inflationary or deflationary is dependent on the following factors:
- The total amount of PoE, determined by how quickly new money enters the ocean compared to how quickly it leaves
- Similarly, the total amount of commodities and finished products
- The ratio between the two
- The number of players
Doubloons are unique to the economy on Puzzle Pirates, and their effect on the economy is worth exploring.
Economic flow of doubloons Edit
Doubloons can enter the economy only one way, and that is by purchasing them through the Puzzle Pirates account page. And once purchased, they are linked to a specific account, unlike PoE which is linked to a specific pirate.
As such, doubloons have a few unique characteristics and capabilities over PoE. First, doubloons can be purchased on one doubloon ocean, either through the doubloon exchange or by trading for them, and spent on another. They can also be purchased under one pirate, but spent under another pirate on the same account on the same ocean.
Also unique with doubloons is that once spent, such as with delivery fees or purchasing trinkets or badges at a palace, they are sunk from the economy. No portion of the doubloon delivery fees is retained by the shoppe or shopkeeper.
The measure of the flow of doubloons into and out of the economy can also be a way of measuring economic activity on doubloon oceans. This kind of information, if it is not already being obtained by the Ringers, can be very valuable information that can assist in making economic decisions regarding doubloons and the doubloon oceans, such as with purchase prices through the account page or the introduction of items that can be purchased with doubloons.
Economic impact Edit
Due to the inter-pirate and inter-ocean capabilities of doubloons, their effect on the market economies of the doubloon oceans is difficult to track or measure. However one thing that is clear is that doubloon exchange rates fluctuate based on the economic theory of supply and demand. As a result, doubloon exchange rates can vary, sometimes greatly, between doubloon oceans.
To a person participating in the economy, doubloons can appear to be a kind of tax when purchased through the doubloon exchange. Purchasing doubloons negatively effects a person's ability to participate in the economy by removing PoE from their possession without providing something of lasting value.
On a doubloon ocean it is possible, though difficult, for a pirate to have a successful career, including a lavish lifestyle, without ever paying cash for doubloons. So while doubloons can have a negative impact on a person's ability to participate in the economy, they are not complete "show-stoppers". The need to purchase doubloons is merely a temporary setback. Contrasting against subscriber oceans, not having an active subscription can severely limit a person's ability to participate in the game, and consequently the economy, by placing limitations on a person's capabilities.