Now, I'm not totally sure if this could work or if it would result in some wonky loops, but I'm curious what the reception to this kind of system would be.
Essentially, add a system that "automatically" prices unpriced unusuals by cross-referencing the effect averages with the actual taunts. The process is a tad more detailed:
Once one item is priced via manual submission (Or is simply a "updated" price), the "Auto-Pricer" can intervene for the rest of, for example, a new unusual. The system will then use appropriate multipliers against each item. For example, Hellish Inferno items are, on average, worth 1.194x the value of an Infernal Smoke variant. If one has the Infernal Smoke price, a guesstimate of the Hellish Inferno variant can be quickly generated, and so on and so forth.
Naturally, there are a few restrictions to prevent jumbled prices.
- The initial item that the system draws upon must have been priced within the past 2 months, in other words the initial item cannot be one whose price is outdated.
- Effect averages can only be drawn upon once a certain number of items with that effect have been priced (3-5 seems appropriate, otherwise new effects will take a while to be considered by the system)
Additionally, the system would introduce a new indicator to join the likes of Raised, Lowered, Refreshed, and Outdated. The indicator would be something simple, perhaps an orange gear. This indicator would show that the price for an item is a rough estimate, and thus not entirely accurate.
The system of an "Auto-Pricer" in this way would provide a number of benefits:
- Lessen pressure on price suggestors to quickly price newer items
- Significantly decrease the likelihood of sharking in a large number of instances*
- Reduce confusion that often surrounds "unpriced" unusuals and assist in removing a degree of the stigma surrounding said items
*The issue of sharking is especially pertinent in this suggestion. Certainly, this system by no means can assist in preventing people from being pressured, conned, lied to, etc etc. It can, however, provide a significant deterrent to sharks. One issue in catching sharks is the problem of price, specifically, determining the value of the items sharked. Even assuming we operate under Outpost's commendable guidelines of 10%, sharks can avoid such a guideline by grabbing unpriced items, which technically have no value and excluding exceptional circumstances (Sunbeams Woodsman comes to mind) will not be "worth the time" to prosecute. This is especially evident with newer items- when updates drop and new items are added, newer players have a much higher likelihood of unboxing these new crates and cases. The items from these sources are, of course, unpriced.
I think this system would be a serious improvement to backpack.tf. I'd love to hear comments, criticisms, etc.