Franz Lohner's Emporium of Wonders and Cosmetics

The Emporium of Wonders has been announced with the intention of adding more cosmetics for Shillings over time. However, we haven’t seen much of this. To be fair, even if you get all cosmetics available in Commendation Chests through said Commendation Chests it will still take a fairly long time to get enough Shillings to buy everything in the Emporium. On a sidenote, since the release of it we have reached this point already. I know of others and personally, I also have enough Shillings to buy out the rest and will probably do so at one point (latest if we get this mysterious fix for cosmetics not counting towards the inventory limit). That said, a common complain is that the stuff in the Emporium is also not that interesting. Especially in comparison to the Premium Cosmetics which makes sense as they should be more expensive. So what could be done to add more cosmetics to the Emporium without expecting Fatshark putting more ressource in creating them. I will skip on Weave cosmetics as I personally don’t think that they should be part of the Emporium. They should be earned by gameplay. Ideas for that exist.

1st idea

After an initial time (something like a year, maybe less, maybe more) existing Premium Cosmetics will simply switch from being purchaseable with money to being purchaseable with Shillings. This would enhance the Emporium but also come with potential issues:

  • Revenue Loss: Well, this one is real and there is no fix for it. If the Premium Cosmetics become part of the Shilling cosmetics Fatshark will have less income. The question here - which noone outside the development team - can answer is how big the revenue after the first year still is. I would expect high values at release diminishing over time like a decay function with little bumps at sales. So at one point the cut will probably be less painful and FS does sell them for a lower price in sales later on anyway. It could also have the risk of some people waiting for that one year which could also affect initial revenue.
  • A switch could put a " money value" on Shillings: Seeing how much cosmetics sell before and after could lead to people creating conversion rates. Not sure exactly what issues could arise from this. But some people would be bothered by it nonetheless. As long as not both options exist at the same time it should be safe.
  • People complain that they paid for it and don’t like it or even demand a compensation: Frankly, no. The Premium Cosmetics have been announced as support, so people should not be compensated if they go “free” especially as you still have to gather Shillings so time investment is needed. As for the rest, I think the Eula covers situations where paid stuff from before can go “free”.
  • People who wanted the cosmetics can’t buy them easily anymore: Some people might like the fast and expensive way. And instead of cashing out, they would need to put more time into the game for getting the Shillings. This can be partially circumventing if the switch from one to the other is exactly known either by a set transition period or a prior announcement. So people who want to have it fast can buy before. Could lead to one final bump in revenues. Although this only helps with the existing playership and not for new players.
  • More cosmetics in the Emporium means more items for the inventory and towards the limit: Not an issue in this case. The cosmetics already exist within the frame of the game. If I buy them for money or Shillings does not change anything on this. Actually, with the “dual” system the chance to clog your inventory with cosmetics is more likely as you can have a faster acquisition rate.

2nd idea

Honestly, I am the last person to recommand any mods. Because they could all disappear over night and I would not shed a single tear or lose a bad word. Most of them are uninteresting or should be away from the official realm as far as possible. That said, I don’t think there are many people who would complain if we just add all the works of Jaffawer into the Emporium. If this would be possible it would be a giant win-win situation even if I have doubts that there is such a large demand for cool shield skins :P. However, I see certain potential problems here as well:

  • Licensing/Greenlighting: According to the creator, they are all lore-friendly. From that side there should be no issue. But noone here knows how obscure the GW influence on additions really is. Is the re-colouring of a FK armor to match the Blazing Sun a problem lore-wise? Or does it need new licensing to GW? At least, it is something which could be suggested to them. If it is just an okay you need from them, then collect a month or two for new community made recolours and sent them in a batch and they pick out what is good to go and what not.
  • Inventory clogging: More cosmetics means higher chances to reach the inventory limit. However, it has been said that this shall change in the future. In addition, the limiting factor here is still the Shilling acquisition rate. Outside of players with over a thousand hours, nobody is at risk to even get the inventory full unless he really disliked smelting his stuff.
  • FS has its own cool recolour tool planned: Frankly, if you don’t think that this will be ready with a finger snap or at least in the near future then drop it. You don’t have to waste more ressource on this if you literally have people who give you countless recolours for free. And if this is about perception you know as well as me that people will complain either way: either being to slow or that people “do your work for free”. Just go the easy and fast route for more cosmetics.
  • Clogging of the Emporium / Visibility: More items in the Emporium may make for harder navigation. This could be solved by making a submenu where recolours are only shown if you click the parent item first. It would need some coding though.
  • Some mysterious technical issues: Okay, maybe this is harder than just creating a new template and copying what the community has done. But at the moment I don’t see where. This is not some new code interferring with existing mechanics. As long as we talk about recolours of existing stuff there is also no risk for additional clipping.

As said, especially the second idea would be a win-win situation for both sides. Obviously, you would have to ask the creator(s) or create a submission form where people can send in there work. In this context, I also have a bonus question for the readers who managed to get this far down. New recolours could actually be a part of something like a community update. But what kind of additions can the community even create. Experience from the L4D community update for example suggest that any changes to balance always cause issues, so this is a no-go anyway. But as long as it is just an addition without changing other stuff it should go:

  • Recolours: Possible, that has been shown
  • New difficulties: Possible, however they mess with the player pool and to a certain degree with balance (and balance perception). So they don’t seem like a good idea.
  • New Okri’s challenges: We can suggest a lot, that is easy. But the coding would be done by Fatshark. Maybe, community can code them as well but can’t test them as they are deactivated in the modded realm.
  • Frames: Should be possible.
  • New Weekly Events/Deed modifiers: Most Weekly Events are perceived as uninteresting or even annoying by players. So maybe this is something which could be tackled. Not sure about it.
  • Anything else which needs minimal input by Fatshark to be brought over into the game?

Regarding the second point, I think cosmetics would better go through fatshark (that would probably need to submit them for approval). But they could definitely use some of Jaffawer’s.

I like the idea of Fatshark making premium cosmetics available for shillings in some ways. But I think the main thing that the emporium needs would be a few good, non-premium hats. I believe every career should have at least 1 red hat, for example. Also, premium careers could really use more cosmetics. I guess they could make those available for shillings for cosmetic upgrades owners?

Lastly, I think they could add paintings (or painting frames) for the keep, and even a few statues. Statues would be quite expensive in game I guess, but every player has a platform for them at the keep’s entrance. Besides Sigmar’s statue (which is for collector’s edition owners) the game has a few more statue models (Magnus comes to mind) so this could be relatively cheap for Fatshark.