All ingredients can become free with this perk (50% discount) and a tier 5 upgrade (another 50%) on an ingredient. This is highly ridiculous and unrealistic.
This perk is the equivalent of reaching the 50% discount the normal way (via spending points to tier 5 per ingredient):
- One explorer costs $50 a day.
- 1 point is generated in 60 game days by one idling explorer, means $3000 cost.
- A tier 5 upgrade is 31 points (1+2+4+8+16), means 3160$50 = $93000 cost.
This is the benefit the perk gives you PER ingredient (and it does it for all).
If you take that the game starts with like 50k, it’s an odd advantage.
Reaching the same without the perk (by unlocking an ingredient to tier 5) would mean a return on investment quite low:
Say an ingredient costs 30 USD, then its 50% final discount (without the perk) is worth $15 per drug (if it has 1 ingredient).
$93000/$15 = 6200 units sold. At 1.0 full speed means 6200 days=16.9 years.
This highlights an issue with both the perk (such an advantage!) and the tier 5 viability (an unreasonable investment).
This 50% discount (via the perk or manual unlock) is not that visible in the daily income change (~$15 saving per drug, or ~30 with the perk if free). Take it from a $700 drug and it does not make a single difference late game. Consider that you can only really afford 31 points when you are kind of rich anyway.
In early game the basic 50% discount makes some difference but doesn’t feel like the hundreds of thousands of dollars that it means in the underlying calculations.
a) Nerf the 50% discount to a lower value, say, 20%, which coupled with a tier 5 manual upgrade would only result in a maxed 70% discount. More realistic.
b) Change the way it works. Instead of a fix discount, untied from the tier upgrades, make it an actual tier 5 upgrade:
Have all ingredients come fully upgraded at tier 5 instead, whenever they are unlocked. So you still get 50% discount but you can’t spend more points. This would max out all discounts at 50%. Even more realistic, as what company would give more than 50% discount on what they produce?
But it would still bring the above hundreds of thousands dollars advantage.
c) Couple this change in method in “b” with a nerf to the perk to tier 3 (instead of tier 5).
In other words, the perk description could be “Discovered ingredients come with level 3 upgrade (30% discount)”.
Each ingredient could still be upgraded (for a lot of points) to a total of 50%.
The perk would now only give 1+2+4 points of advantage (tier 3) that is 7*3000=$21000 per ingredient.
Compared to how it is now (the equivalent of a tier 5 at $93000), the top 2 tiers (16+8 points=$72000) would be taken away from the perk.
Method “c” would:
- Give 30% discount, maxed out at 50%, and no extra 50%.
- A 77% nerfed monetary advantage ($21000 vs $92000)
I hope I was not rambling
What do you think?