Interview with a Money Trader

by Alphaville Herald on 21/11/03 at 11:54 pm

In this post, I initiate what I hope to be the first of many interviews with a TSO player and money trader, who will remain anonymous for obvious reasons. Let’s just call him… “TSO Power Player” (or TPP for short).

Urizenus: First question: what is your occupation
TPP: no joke.
TPP: TSO IS my rl job.
Urizenus: but what do you do in TSO
TPP: alot of transfers and trades. and answering questions with my overwhelming amount of TSO knowledge.
Urizenus: I know you don’t get paid for answering questions and I know you don’t charge for transfers, so is the income coming from trades?
Urizenus: what I mean is, you sell simoleans. Is that your only source of income?
TPP: yes. i have no job in RL. medical prevents me currently. plus clients through my business pays alot more than any job i could get. it’s even better too because i get anywhere from 25-35% more on conversion from US dollar.
Urizenus: Can I ask you how much you make selling simoleans?
TPP: not as much as some of the long established really big players now. but i manage a few 100 US or so a week after splitting 50% with my equal partner
Urizenus: Any idea how much the big players make?
TPP: 1000′s of US per week for sure.
Urizenus: just working TSO?
TPP: oh yeah. it’s BIG business for some. some have lists with over 1000 customer names on them. and several high end PC’s churning out 100′s of millions of simoleans per week.
Urizenus: 100s of millions of simoleans. Do they do this by exploiting flaws in the programming or just by working standard money objects

TPP: it’s all done through auto mazing. it’s the preferred and best way.
Urizenus: does that mean it’s by exploiting flaws?
TPP: auto mazing is done by super fast maze bots, and no it’s not exploiting flaws, it’s just working something that is already there much faster than you could do it manually.
Urizenus: so high end maze bots are the principle simolean generators as far as you know.
TPP: yep. the occasional large exploits are not worth the risk. you are easily caught. but you do get a few who appear and try to make a few bucks as exploits come and go.
Urizenus: About how many customers have you supplied with simoleans?
TPP: no comment. it’s a fair size number that is steadily increasing tho. Urizenus: do you have one supply partner or several
TPP: just 1. seeking more possibly as demand continues to grow
Urizenus: and obviously your supply partner has mazing operations in several cities
TPP: obviously
Urizenus: I see you are selling exotic pets now too. Are there dedicated suppliers for those, or do you just buy them where you find them.
TPP: no dedicated suppliers for those. just get em where i find em. or off friends. but there are plans in progress to have a tool to automate the painful searching process for rare pets too. so you don’t get carpal tunnel or RSI from all the excessive clicking required and thus sue maxis for game related injuries. LOL
Urizenus: what are the rare breeds and what are the going prices for them?
TPP: breeds are St Bernards, Tigers, Cheetahs and Afghan Dogs. going prices are whatever you want. but Tigers have been seen on eBay for going for $US100 or more. They are super rare.
Urizenus: once the search process is automated should we expect the price of these animals to drop rapidly?
TPP: possibly. but not straight away. they would still take some time to find. as the odds would not change just the search rate would be a bit quicker
TPP: and would still require alot of simoleans to find them with.
Urizenus: True. Can you turn an ok profit on the rare breeds? Why don’t people just sell these on ebay
TPP: no, there is just not enough stock to turn a good profit from pets yet. and people do sell them on ebay. just look there. alot of listings.
Urizenus: Back to simoleans, it seems to me that the value of the simolean relative to the dollar is sinking like a rock. In the 80 days I’ve been on I’ve seen the price of a million simoleans go from 40 US to 8 US. Where does this bottom out?
TPP: back in the early days it used to be as high as $100US per million. of course this was more than 6-7 months ago or in the first few months of this year (it’s hard to remember now). i believe there is no bottoming out for it, but that $10 per single mill is the lowest before it just get’s insane and you make too little to matter. drastic undercutting only leads to short term gain and then nothing.
Urizenus: If you ran Maxis what would you do to control the monetary supply?
TPP: if i ran Maxis, TSO would be alot better. lol. and no comments on how to control the simolean overload. why would i put my industry outta business? lol
TPP: they pay some of their staff peanuts, and the rest bananas i think.
Urizenus: ahem, are you calling the Maxis staff a bunch of monkeys? LOL
TPP: well someone has been making bad decisions over there. lol.

7 Responses to “Interview with a Money Trader”

  1. Jamie Hale

    Nov 22nd, 2003

    Well, if Maxis was smart, and was concerned about the state of their internal economies, they might consider buying a few billion simoleans back to limit supply. That’s my take on it at least.

    Oh, if only there was a marketplace that would allow such a large currency buy-back? ;)

  2. Peter Ludlow

    Nov 22nd, 2003

    LOL Jamie, now where would one find such a market?

    I think the real problem is that money generation by mazing is WAY too easy. Maxis either has to introduce elements that will prevent auto-mazing (perhaps some kind of turing test) or they have to cut back the payoffs or just eliminate the object altogether.

  3. Jamie Hale

    Dec 15th, 2003

    As I’m sure you know (or maybe it was changed after your sim was brutally slaughtered), mazing is done for.

    Here’s hoping Maxis’ latest round of patches will make this mountain of simoleans I’m sitting on worth something… :)

  4. Some Guy

    Dec 17th, 2003

    “There’s a sucker born every minute.” The immortal words of Hannum are only too true in the online world. IMHO, if people are making real money selling fake money in a game, why doesn’t Maxis capitalize on the market? Instead of letting others sell their (Maxis’s under control of the player) simoleans for a few measly dollars, why doesn’t Maxis start a service that does the same thing. For a substantial fee, of course. And, as Maxis is the original supplier of all the simoleans, it would be easy for them to cut out weak points in the game design, making their “treasury’s” simoleans worth more.

  5. Sim Reality
    I’d been looking for a source for links on the weird goings-on in the world of “The Sims Online,” and Penny Arcade just now linked people over to the Alphaville Herald, their major news source. Here’s “Tycho” discussing the latest:…

  6. Not Surprised To Find So Many Lazy Jerks On TSO

    Dec 22nd, 2003

    I love people who make working for my money pointless. I don’t even know why I bother playing TSO anymore, with all the scammers on it. TPP sounds like a very lazy, selfish individual to me. No wonder s/he is on medical and can’t work. Boo hoo. Yeah, the money you’re making now is good…bet you don’t claim it as income and don’t pay taxes!

  7. Nicholas

    Jan 20th, 2004

    I also don’t believe in using bots to control how much you make, nor do I believe in buying simoleans for rl money. However, that being said, Not Surprised that comment you made “TPP sounds like a very lazy, selfish individual to me. No wonder s/he is on medical and can’t work.” was downright cruel. You don’t know this individual, so to make that claim is just cruel. Also, unless you are friends with this person, you don’t know if he is claiming it as income or not. So to make that statement is just wrong of you. Don’t judge a book by the cover. You have to read inside it to know what it’s all about.

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