2015-09-23 23:26:47

It'd be nice if we could just go ahead and spend something like 3000 to have the marketing team check all of the items and give you the top 5 or 10  items that are in demand. It's pretty hard to keep track of how much something cost and  what people are willing to pay for it.

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THE ONLY THING YOU CAN BE ABSOLUTELY SURE OF...
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2015-09-24 15:20:42

It would be neat if you were able to type in the price for an item. Right now pressing plus or minus will increase/decrease the list price for an item by $0.25. This can be very annoying if the proposed price is say $1,600, and you want to raise it to $2,200, because your marketing team claimed the most anyone would be willing to pay is $2,219, and you don't want to let the opportunity of getting $600 more pass by. Hence, you raise the price, but the way it works at the moment you hold down the plus key for a while until you are satisfied with the price you think it's eventually supposed to cost. Little price changes are of course no problem to make.

Errare humanum est!

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2015-09-24 17:30:40

the blasting gd wrote:

It would be neat if you were able to type in the price for an item. Right now pressing plus or minus will increase/decrease the list price for an item by $0.25. This can be very annoying if the proposed price is say $1,600, and you want to raise it to $2,200, because your marketing team claimed the most anyone would be willing to pay is $2,219, and you don't want to let the opportunity of getting $600 more pass by. Hence, you raise the price, but the way it works at the moment you hold down the plus key for a while until you are satisfied with the price you think it's eventually supposed to cost. Little price changes are of course no problem to make.

You can also press shift, ctrl or alt with + or -. Shift increases by one, ctrl by 5 and alt bei 25 if i remember correctly.

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2015-09-24 18:32:04

Hi Aprone, it would be cool if you could hit something like control-backspace on an item to just hear the price at which your research team thinks the customers will buy it for, without all the added fluff of the descriptions, and surveying thousndas of customers. It's just an aesthetic thing, because if I hear 2 numbers immediately after each other, I can compare them more easily. And then I can compare more sets of numbers to figure out the best ways to stock my aisles.

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2015-09-24 19:01:53

Thanks Viktor, I forgot about that. I realized that those combinations are only listed under the "introduction" section, but not under "game keys". While I did read the whole readme, adding those keys to the "game keys" section would help keep an overview of all keys available, if you forgot any and had to look them up, IMO.

Errare humanum est!

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2015-09-24 19:02:34

Sneak, I'm writing that one down for sure.  It would be a nice addition to the game.

Blasting gd, yeah you'll definitely benefit from the shift, ctrl, and alt keys when adjusting prices and things.  It tells about them in teh readme but I don't know if the actual game says anywhere about that.

KeyIsFull, I have written that down as well.  I like the idea.

I have had a handful of suggestions come in through email as well, so I think the next update will have a good number of fun changes in it.  It is looking like I won't be able to get any code done today (I couldn't yesterday either) because of real life stuff.  Doesn't real life understand that shopping at U-Mart will save them hundreds on all of their electronic needs?!  Like this theater TV for example, only $1100!  Buzztech electric oven for $850, when anywhere else you'd pay 9!

I May have played this game a bit too much.  tongue

- Aprone
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2015-09-24 19:12:49

Great game! I thin it would e nice if changing the prices for items was an edit field instead of having to keep hit plus and minus. It be cool if you could pick shop hours, and if there was music while your custamers shopped. How about adding custamer serviss to handle lost items, and returns? Rewards programs maybe if your store gets bigger. Just ideas and I always wanted a game like this. Thanks for making this!

Kingdom of Loathing name JB77

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2015-09-24 21:57:20

Hi all. I love the game. I was kind of thinking about this game and was wondering if it could be expanded on to actually have the ability of walking around in the store, and stocking. bringing rolltaners from the stock room. calling the delivery trucks for more stock. You could help a customer with finding something. You would have to walk to the register and check someone out when they are ready. I'm just thinking because my wife works at Doller General and she tells me of all the things she has to do there and I would love that kind of thing in a game. so, sorry if this is just a jumble of things, Just brain storming.

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2015-09-25 03:39:56

This gme is sneakily addictive, but there are some pain points for me that limit my willingness to waste more than about three hours at a time instead of writing my pledge letter for the church, or investigating the Chamber of Commerce's program to make my business boom or kiss my wife.

I understand what you're doing with the marketing people investigating prices at other stores and surveying customers.  It turns out that if you do that frequently it slows down game play quite a bit for something that has only a few decisions.  To do things right, I should be checking through every product every few days and surveying the competition.  It just takes a lot of time to do that and I'm wondering if there isn't a way to streamline these processes.  Perhaps allow the player to set up a filter to show only items with at least a 20% markup between unit cost and expected max sales price, with a command to at least move to the expected price and adjust from there if you wanted to keep the +- keys for price adjustment.  It would also be useful to have a list containing currently stocked items with their unit and expected maximum prices.
Rather than paying by the transaction, set a few different levels of contract with your marketing firm with a monthly cost that gives you more information as you go up in cost.
Editable prices would solve another pain point.  For me, it is a bit tiresome to have to remember which modifier key has which increment.
I don't know if others are having this problem, but the sounds meant to indicate sales aren't giving me enough feedback as the clock ticks.  I can't tell which aisles are selling.  Oddly enough, when I went into the sounds folder and played the 1 through 10.wav files, I only heard something from the 1.wav file.  If they are meant to have different pitches to show which aisle, I'm not hearing that.
Some nits to pick here, but your usual fascinating concept.

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2015-09-25 15:42:43

Hi, I finally got bored after aobut august of my first year when I managed to dominate everyone and have about $500000. I just started buying the same stuff and not messing with the prices and I was rolling in the dough. I know this wouldn't continue forever, but I still had way too much money and I was getting bored. It'd be cool if there were other things you could spend money on such as
Store opulence: things like adding really lustrous metals to the doors or the aisles, in order to increase the draw factor of your store. Increasing the draw factor would cause customers to tolerate higher prices.
Employee training: Spend $6 to $10000 to train a single employee to handle 3 additional customers. You could adjust the hourly wages of both the trained and untrained employees independently so that you could pay for their training over several months
Security guards: It makes sense that a higher draw factor for your store would attract unscrupulous thieves. Hire security guards and assign them to aisles to prevent the posssibility of thievery. Security guard wages would be considerably higher than normal checkout employee wages, but you wouldn't have to worry about them until you started increasing your store's draw factor. Without security guards, a thief could run off with any number of items from a single unprotected aisle. The higher the draw factor, the more likely thieves would attempt to steal stuff from you.

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2015-09-25 16:55:08

Jeffb, I originally used edit boxes and it started to drive me nuts.  Now it might just be me, but once I got used to using plus minus along with Shift, Ctrl, and Alt, it was pretty fast for me to set prices.  If the demand for it ever gets high enough, I might go back to edit boxes.

Violinist, I do have a few ways I might be able to streamline the market research side of things.  It's going to come down to guessing and checking to see which features help without making the player into a money printing press.  Like anything, it seems like the way to win is to have as much information as possible, so it's hard to hand out more information without it leading to endless profits.  I'll give it a shot though.

Hmm, I'm not sure why you aren't hearing sounds for numbers 2 through 10.  They are all different tones, so I guess people might hear them differently.  If I had 10 different musical instrument sounds handy, I'd test to see if they are easier to distinguish as they play.  Perhaps someone else, who has such sounds, can give it a test to see.

KeyIsFull, I'm currently looking into a few new ideas, and I've added some of yours to my list to consider.

- Aprone
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2015-09-25 21:33:42

I like this but I am downright terrible at strategy games.

The bipeds think this place belongs to them, how cute.

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2015-09-26 03:36:52

Let me clarify that I am absolutely behind the notion of how much you spend on marketing being one of the decisions you make that affects your success/failure.  I'm only quibbling about the way the information is being presented.

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2015-09-26 06:48:14

I'm going to post this here just to keep all the suggestions in one place:
Several comments:
I really don't like that messages from me arrowing around get read when looking at the system messages.
I would like a way to keep market research in a txt file or something.
I would also love it if I could look at a financial statement rather than trying to do it in my head big_smile.
It would say:

In January your costs were $10000 and your income was $13000 with a net of 3000. You spent $5000 on employees and $4500 on goods and $500 on market research.

If I could also have a statement on each item it would also be nice. Something like:

You spent $1000 on the swamp board game and your sales were $1300 last month.
You spent $1500 on the chess board and your sales were $1200 last month.

This would make it look more like what a real store's books look like.

I would also like to be able to perform user groups for each product. Pay $700 or so to find out what a group of customers think of each product.

Also, when the research comes in from other stores, I would like to see the current warehouse price of each product.

It would also be more realistic if I could pay $2000 or so each month to get unlimited market research as then I have my own teem.

I would love to be able to keep the quarterly reports out in a text file as well. It is really amusing though, that I can see their reports because in real life, only public companies like KMart need to publish quarterly reports!

I can suggest lots and lots of more things, but I think this is enough for now. I would like it to be as realistic as possible as I think you are simulating a store very well.
All store owners get financials that show what is selling, how much it is costing, how much their overhead is and everything. The formula for price is:
(Cost of goods + overhead / number of goods) + margin.
So I would love it if I could set that formula to be applied every time I get new goods.
When you own a business your bookkeeper and accountant are your 2 best friends!
I would also love to be able to do market research before the store opens. Possibly with user groups.

I also think you should get more sales if you specialize in one product. Because people wouldn't buy chairs from the same place they buy board games unless you had more than 4 products!

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2015-09-26 07:02:16

Just another couple comments in reply to what people have said above:
Perhaps in the beginning the game could be you with no money, but with a wish to start a business. You then need to find a focus and start by selling to people on the street or online until you have enough to put down on your loan. Then you need to find a building with the correct rent, location and size, and then you start running the business, doing everything on your own. Then as time goes on you higher one person, then 2 people and so-on. But you need to train them and whatnot. Then you can start building a name in the community and participate in the chamber of commerce, making partnerships or holding deals. Then once your store gets to be a certain size, you can go rent another building and start building a brand. You need to register a trademark, figure out what business entity you need and either run the stores yourself or try and franchise it.
Competitors then pop up and tout their thing as the best and you need to find a way to get customers away from them and back to you.

It would also be cool if you could buy smaller businesses, put research into new products or higher managers to restock the store when it gets low.
Also, I would like to be able to restock when there are 2 items left rather than wait until there are 0.

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2015-09-26 08:47:58

Hi Jeremi!
There is something, that I get for example around 84, there is everything 0, when I load this file. I pressed spacebar and It says, that I am winner.

Music is the language of the universe.

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2015-09-26 09:46:37

hi. I'm loving this game so far aprone! so far, I have all 10 isles set up, and maxed out to 100 capacity. I currently have no lone's, and a bank balance of just under 1.6 million bucks. ahaha. doing ok so far. we need more products to sell though, for more interesting varieties. or, perhaps, ....
what if this were to become an online game, where in you could have shops, and or factories to make products! ... so for example. if there are to be computers, there should be a factory to make them, and then ship out, and so on. this game, if taken past what it is currently, could be so awesome! I love this sort of game.
I'd like the ability to expand past 10 isles, and past 100 per isle. and on top of that, I'd agree. I'd like the ability to restock before the isle is empty. though I guess I can see why that's not done at the moment, as the prices you pay for the stocking are shown on the information for the slot. but it could be much more useful to be able to restock continually. or perhaps, you could even set up a new system aprone, where in you can either manually stock a slot, or, you could have an automatic system in place, where in you set it to restock that slot, if the price per item drops below a set limit. so the slot might empty itself, but as soon as the purchase price to restock that slot, wether or not it's got items already or not, it would go ahead and restock. this sort of arrangement would only really be useful once you have a bit of money behind you to back up the continual purchases. but it could make things more interesting. also, here's another idea. I'd like to be able to slow down the day cycle. ticking over as it does, very large amounts of time go by pretty quickly. it could be good to set it like it is if you have things set up for automatic restocking, but generally, it could be quite fun to slow it down, and relax a bit. so perhaps, like lunimals, you could have different settings. I'd say the current tick rate be the max, then have settings that would make 1 day take, for example, 1 min, 2.5 mins, and 5 mins or something. or possibly, even longer. maybe 2 mins, 5  or 10 mins, and say, 30 mins. that way, you could basically have the game running quite a lot of the time, and you could be working on stocking things up or managing your staff and things during the day.
of course, if it were to become online, you could either leave things based on a tick system, or you could even make it real time. either way could be fun.

just some ideas. either way, I'm loving playing this. good one aprone

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2015-09-26 09:46:44

Frastlin, good suggestions!  I do believe I'll be adding at least some of those ideas tomorrow.

Giovani, I'm sorry but I don't quite understand what you mean.  Are you having trouble with a saved game file?

- Aprone
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2015-09-26 11:34:57

OK, for explanation:
I have for example 98000 € and I save the game. When I have loaded this, there are every values at 0 (credits, date is january 0 and money also 0).

Music is the language of the universe.

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2015-09-26 11:45:43

Giovani, please send me your saved game file if you can.  I would like to examine it to see what is going wrong.

- Aprone
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2015-09-27 01:10:21

New update posted.  I wanted to have a few more things added to this before posting, but it looks like I'm out of free time for today.  No point sitting on some cool new features when people might be able to enjoy them.  I'll hopefully get more done tomorrow.

Changes from 0.6b to 0.7

- Unions have been added as a new challenge.  As your business grows and you have more workers, there is a chance that your people will form a union.  Once you have a union there is no way to remove it (ha ha), and it will impose its own rules upon you.  The best way to keep a union from forming is to keep your employees happy.
- Fixed a bug that allowed people to stock aisles that were still under construction.
- Fixed a bug that allowed players to further increase an aisle size while it was still under construction.
- I have redesigned the way employees choose to quit and go work for a different store.  There is always a chance someone will leave (even if you pay more money), but the odds are much smaller now.
- Your store can now have several types of features, services, and departments added onto it.  These affect your store in different ways, and I'm hoping they add a new layer of strategy to the game.
- The following extra store features have been added to the game:
  + Extra shopping carts.  Customers hate searching for an available cart out in the parking lot.  Buying extras means you will always have plenty of carts waiting for them at the entrance.  It is an extra incentive that helps customers keep coming back to your store rather than taking their business elsewhere.
  + Bottle return.  A bottle return machine allows your customers to come and cash in empty soda cans and beer bottles.  It is an extra incentive that helps customers keep coming back to your store rather than taking their business elsewhere.
  + Fancy store decorations.  Customers will know they've entered a high class establishment as they walk on beautiful tiled floors.  Marble trim and artsy displays help keep customers keep coming back to your store rather than taking their business elsewhere.
  + Customer service counter.  Your customers sometimes have questions, and sometimes need to argue and complain about something.  Having a dedicated customer service counter gives them a place to do just that.  This is an extra incentive that helps customers keep coming back to your store rather than taking their business elsewhere.
  + Store rewards program.  Customers get to carry around a little card on their keys, instantly giving them 5% off anything they buy in your store!  This could hurt your bottom line, but it is a great incentive that helps keep customers keep coming back to your store, rather than taking their business elsewhere.
  + Lights in the parking lot.  When it gets dark out, lights in the parking lot make your customers feel safe.  It is an extra incentive that helps customers keep coming back, and also a way to help prevent robberies.
  + Store security guards.  There are always people who feel they can take whatever they want.  Security guards will help prevent shop lifters from stealing your merchandise.  Security guards also help prevent robberies.
  + Parking lot security.  Mounted cameras and a security guard patroling the parking lot help your customers feel safe.  It is an extra incentive that helps customers keep coming back, and also a way to help prevent robberies.
  + Employee break room.  While your employees are on their break, they will have a vending machine and a few tables to sit at.  It isn't fancy, but it helps make them happier.  Happy employees are less likley to unionize, and if already in a union, happy employees are less likely to demand pay raises!
  + Employee lounge.  Before or after their shift and during breaks, your workers can watch TV from comfortable sofas.  Vending machines and a coffee maker are appreciated as well.  The lounge makes your employees feel happier and appreciated.  Happy employees are less likley to unionize, and if already in a union, happy employees are less likely to demand pay raises!
  + Employee bonus program.  Each month your management team hands out bonus money to the employees who did the best job.  These types of rewards make your employees feel happier and appreciated.  Happy employees are less likley to unionize, and if already in a union, happy employees are less likely to demand pay raises!
- At the moment shop lifters and thieves have not been added, so the various security extras only serve a purpose if they also say they help keep customers happy.
- The popularity of your store now affects your total customers per day.  If your store provides extra features that improve customer happiness, you will begin pulling customers away from rival stores who do not have the same perks.
- When spying to see what other stores are selling, the market research team will also show you how much those items currently cost from the warehouse.  They show you a maximum price, since buying larger quantities gives you a discount.
- When market research is giving you a maximum price limit, holding Ctrl will quickly display only the amount.  It is a faster way to get to the point.

- Aprone
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2015-09-27 01:20:07

great changes, now I can spend all those hundreds of thousands of dollars I gain after I pound kai mart into submission ha ha.

I like to sleep, Sleep is good,
This is how I do it: Lie on a nice warm cozy bed, and dream dreams about how to rule the world!
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2015-09-27 02:28:44

Hello,
This is, once again, a very nice game.
I like the fact that it's quite a simple interface yet you can manage quite a lot.
I have, however, found a few bugs.
I purchased a bunch of new features at once and it still only said I had one extra feature even though a lot of them were now unlocked.
I was going to save my game after making a profit for a while, but at one point, a tick past and then I got a runtime error. I had an isle which had just finished construction that I started to extend again, I think. I can't quite remember.
Lastly, a very minor bug occurs when you are in the extra features menu. If you try to press enter on the return to main menu option, it sas hold enter and press backspace to pay £0.00 to add this feature, or something similar.

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2015-09-27 06:30:45

Thanks for bringing those bugs to my attention.  I'll get them fixed up the next chance I get.

- Aprone
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2015-09-27 10:59:01

hope so, as the new version errors out for some reason after a bit. tested with a saved game from old version, and it did it after one tick. made a new game, and lasted a few weeks, then yet again, error. ugg. lol.

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