Wednesday, 14 November 2012


I had this big post about gardening that was almost done, but it looks like the value of a plot hour of a crop garden isn't terribly important anymore.

Thanks for reading, perhaps I will see you in game before the end.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Sno Cones

I've been posting very rarely in the past few months, mostly because I'm currently on parental leave and it turns out that spending all day with a baby makes it very hard to think about (or to want to think about) anything.  So when I finally sat down to do this post I was somewhat concerned about the complexity I was approaching.

We can finally make our own sno cones, and even gather our own ice to make them.  I thought I was going to be analyzing a lot of things.

Scraping Ice
Scraping ice is not a highly productive activity.  It is pretty similar to scraping barnacles except that there are no upgrades to make it faster or give better bonuses.  You spend four energy to get between one and three ice and four imagination.  This takes four seconds.  Since ice has been upgraded to a 6 currant value, this would put scraping ice continuously from a never ending ice nubbin at 3.5 currants per second.  Pretty much the worst productivity of any activity ever.

But you can't stand at an infinite ice nubbin.  Instead you have to run from place to place hunting the 145 ice nubbins in the world that refill every six minutes.  That means that in order to get that 317 rainbo sno cone badge - if you are making the cones yourself - you need 1 hour and 45 minutes of the entire world's ice production.  Assuming there are others competing with you, that's going to be a very expensive product.

Elements are the hardest thing to put a price on in the game.  The in game price doesn't reflect their value at all.  You can't solve for the real value based on their inputs because it's a system of three equations with four unknowns.  It would seem like one of the elements should effectively be worth nothing but all of them are the limited factor in making one useful product or another.  Of course there is also the fact that you have to mine to get them, and that mining is poor productivity.  So even if I could resolve the equations, I'd still end up with a large number of different values to work with based on whether you mined yourself, or you bought rocks and then did the grinding yourself, or whether you bought bags of elements.  Of course because elements can't be listed at auction or put in SDBs determining the cost of buying them directly is nearly impossible.

Yes, it was going to be a lot of work to figure out the real value of sno cones but I've been saved from doing all that work by doing one very simply calculation.  Add up the value of all five colours of sno cones: 75 + 150 + 300 + 600 + 1100 = 2225.  But a rainbo sno cone is only worth 2200!

When you make a sno cone you lose value.  Since there is no way that any of these calculations are ever going to work in such a way that losing value from the base products is worth spending time and energy on, I don't really have to do any more work than that.

The final verdict: If you want the badge, it will cost you 634,951 currants at the sno cone vendor, plus about just south of 5k worth of paper (though I imagine most people interested in this badge will be able to pull the paper from their overstocked SDBs of more paper than they will ever use).  Just pay the bear.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

The Penyahtewan Assembly

The games first "epic" came and went in the last week.  We had five feats plus a "make up" feat after we failed the third feat of the assembly.  I wanted to offer a quick review of the feats in the assembly and say a few things about what can be learned for future feats.

First of all, a couple of metrics for feats.  The first is the percentage of the total that was completed by the top 26 contributors - that is, if you add up the contributions of the top 26, what is that as a percentage of the total that was accomplished.  This gives us an idea how much the success of the feat was dependent on "hardcore" players or people who really grinded to get the top spot.

The second is the percentage of the total that was completed by the top 1009 contributors.  The feat page only lists the contribution of the top 1009 so it seems like another benchmark.

Finally, we'll take a look at how many glitchen participated.  Since we know how much was contributed in total, and how much was contributed by the top 1009, we know how much was contributed by everyone else.  We also know the maximum contribution of every out of the top 1009.  That means we can calculate an absolute minimum number of participants.  Of course the minimum number of participants doesn't give us a great picture of how many people participated.  For example, on Call to Feast the lowest contribution in the top 1009 was 1 invite, which means that we know for a fact all other participants put in exactly 1 invite.  By contrast, the 1009th place glitch contributed 1830 sparkly for Sparkla's Shine on the Giants.  It's possible that most of the people past the 1009th person contributed over 1000 sparkly or it could be that thousands of people only put in one.  I'm open to suggestions for how to get a decent estimate of how many people participated, but none of the methods I've come up with are satisfactory to me, so I'm not venturing a guess. Still, I'll discuss it a little bit for each one.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Back on Topic with Energy Changes

I went a little off the rails in my last post, adding quite a flight of fancy to my core message.  But the core message is that we need to have some expectations regarding skills and some consistency with regards to how many skills you have to allocate to get something done.  Since there are penalties for having more skills than your brain capacity, it is a little odd that you have to devote very different numbers of skills to very similar capabilities.

This is especially true when I am suggesting that we change the penalty for being over brain capacity to increased energy loss.  So let's get to the bit about energy.

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Totally (or at least partially) Redoing Skills

I said I'd follow up my last post with descriptions of how I would actually implement the changes I am suggesting.  Much like that post, I will leave any kind of attempts to express my humility as an exercise for the reader, though this week I will increase the difficulty of that exercise.

I won't be tackling my suggestions in order because there is kind of a natural order to them and I didn't put them in that order when I formulated the list.  Really, the first thing I need to talk about is a top to bottom skill tree rewrite.

Saturday, 29 September 2012

How to (maybe) Fix (a subset of) Everything

There have been a number of little balance changes recently for the better.  These changes indicate to me that Tiny Speck may be gearing up for release.  Before we get to that point, I figure I should explain how to fix everything that is currently wrong with the game.

I could obviously give some kind of disclaimer to indicate my humility on this subject - you know, I don't claim to even know all the problems let alone the solutions; this is just one idea of an approach that might work.  Instead I'll leave such qualifiers as an exercise for the reader and instead express myself more and more arrogantly as the post goes on.

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Potion Grinding

I had an obsolete potion grinding guide on my sidebar so I fixed that by replacing it with a not-obsolete guide (it turns out it is now feasible to get 1033 potions done in about 8 hours from scratch).  I will make a post about growing yellow crumb in the new world soon.

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Vendor Prices Update

The new vendor prices regime is in.  They still have variable markups but regardless of those markups they all buy from you at 66% of the list price.  The tool vendor is still at 75% but apparently that will move around in the future.  I've updated my vendor price page.

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Dung-Kicker Drops

There are so many questions to ask about the new gardening potions that it is hard to know where to start.  So when I was recently asked whether Dung-Kicker Drops were an efficient way to speed up Yellow Crumb production, I welcomed the direction.

Friday, 31 August 2012

Complete Insanity

Something I've been meaning to do for a long time is reshuffle a bunch and get some data on the frequency of various cards.  I reshuffled 100 times, buying everything that wasn't energy and saw a total of 1008 cards.  Of those, I had the following:

+20 Energy: 86
+50 Energy: 92
+100 Energy: 96
+500 Energy: 26
Get out of Hell Free: 59
Reshuffle: 58
Event Tickets: 591

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Cheese photo contest

I decided to start a little activist campaign to rebalance Cheese, and it seems the best way to do this is to have a snaps contest.  You can check it out in the general forum.  I hope to get lots of submission to show public support for this issue.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Cheese is Insane

Obviously there is a lot of talk about the new player experience right now, so I thought I'd say something that has to be said: Cheese is insane.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Gardening Efficiency

diaveborn ♥ asked about the efficiency of gardening in the forums, so I thought I would do some experiments.  There was little chance that it was going to be anything but efficient to grow yellow flowers, but it's always worth getting exact quantities.

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

New Vendor Prices Page

In honor of the recent upgrades that affect vendor prices I've made a new vendor prices page that updates my original post on the subject.  You can find it in my Interesting Things sidebar.

Monday, 30 July 2012

10 Uses

Something I should have tested a while ago: As long as an icon has 10 or fewer uses you can tithe to it.  If it has 11 or more tithing is disabled.

That is all.

Friday, 27 July 2012

Haven't Vanished Entirely

I realize I haven't been posting anything.  Part of that is playing La-Mulana, and part of it is just nothing thinking of anything to analyze.  I've resumed gathering data for how more than four milkers affect collection rates, but that's going to take a long time.

So I thought I'd just make a quick post to say that I haven't disappeared completely, and to say that I'm open to suggestions.  The more complex and obtuse the better.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Updated Street Imagination

I've updated my street imagination tables and moved it all into a page about how street imagination works.  You can follow the link here, and I've also put a link to it under Interesting Things in the sidebar for easy reference.

Friday, 13 July 2012

15% more Visitors

Or, you get 15% more from each unique visitor.  Where "more" means more than your base street imagination per day.  Let's try that again:

For each unique glitch that visited your street in a day, your street imagination stipend in increased by 15% of the base stipend - which, as you'll recall, is equal to your Qurazy Quoin value.  By "unique" I mean to say that the same glitch visiting more than once in the same day doesn't increase the total.

The amount is rounded before being added.  For example, at level 10 your base stipend is 55, and 15% of 55 is 8.25.  If four people visit your street at level 10 you get 8.25 rounded to 8 times 4 = 32 extra imagination, not 8.25 times 4 = 33 imagination.

Animals will have to wait until early next week because it took me a couple of days just to sort this part out - in part because I had to level up one of my alts to verify my hypothesis.  I do have a few animal results but I like to double check things before posting them.  Machines will be even more complicated because there are four types of machines, multiple things you can makes with them and varying stack sizes to deal with, but, baby permitting, I will try to get some good conclusions over the weekend.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

New Imagination from Street Work

Just a quick update to let you know that I am going to working on getting the numbers for animal interactions, machine interactions and visits over the next couple of days, but unfortunately there are a lot of things to test and I can only test about three per real day.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012


A long, long time ago
And I can still remember how butterfly singing affects the lifespan of butterflies
But I knew if I had my chance
Then I would assess whether singing to butterflies was worth doing just for the imagination

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Game Balance

I wrote about different resources you can gather and how mining falls far short of the mark set by animal and tree harvesting.  Today I'm going to look at what effect this would have in a perfect market, why that is nothing like what really happens, and whether it might be better if mining weren't so far behind the other gathering options.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012


There are lots of skills that let you combine things into other things, usually resulting in a gain in currant value and in imagination.  Within those skills there are many different things you can create and the gains for each vary.  When it comes to gathering the raw materials to make those things, however, there are three main tracks: Animals, Trees and Rocks.  So let's look at how we spend our gathering time and how profitable it is.

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Street Imagination

Note: The information in those post is accurate as of the original date of the post, but things have changed.  I have made a page to keep up-to-date with changes to this, you can find it here.

With the help of some scientific alts I've compiled a list of how much imagination you earn from people doing things on your street.

Crop Garden
Herb Garden
Mining the entire rock
Mining the entire rock
Mining the entire rock
Mining the entire rock
Revering, Reflecting or Ruminating

A few things to note:

First, your daily cap is equal to five times your qurazy quoin value.  In addition to this, you earn your qurazy quoin value each day for free.  Thus, the maximum you can achieve each day is six times that value.  That means you have to be at least level 36 to get the top badge for your street stipend.

Second, rocks reward imagination when they are mined out.  A partially mined rock gives no imagination.

Third, only the actions above give imagination.  Petting and watering trees don't give anything.  Planting, weeding and watering gardens give nothing, as does tithing to icons.  I think the general rule is that we only get bonus imagination when our guest walks away with something for their troubles.

Fourth, animals and dirt piles currently give nothing.  According to stoot in the bug forums, this is an oversight and will be corrected.  I'll look to update the table at some point in the future.

Friday, 22 June 2012

Qurazy Quoin Value

Edit: I'm not changing this text for historical reasons, but all the values on the chart below are confirmed.

I've got Qurazy Quoin values for you for all but very low levels.

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Purple Numbers

As Tribeca pointed out in my musing on purple, I should hardly make posts without at least some numbers, so I took a look at the post to see what I could quantify and I found it.

Suppose they did decide to implement a purple product that had the bizarre actions effect I described. What should you get when you use those actions?

Friday, 15 June 2012


Instead of numbers and things about the game today, I'm going to just use a post to talk about ideas I have.  I'm going to cross-post this on the ideas forum.  Somewhere in my heart I hope this makes you think, "No numbers?  I think I'll skip this post."  If it doesn't (shame on you!) then here is what I've been thinking about:

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Earning Imagination from your Street

I've just begun my list of how much imagination you earn for everything that is done on your street.  It's not much of a list so far, all I know is that someone watering your garden plot gives you nothing while someone harvesting from one of your trees gives you eight.

My hypothesis, based on those two facts, is that you only earn imagination when someone gets something from your street.  If this is true then scooping, digging, mining, harvesting and picking herbs and crops should give you imagination, while watering, petting, and tending should not.  Fireflies will be a little harder to test and a little weirder.

Also I was out getting some metal last night and I ended up restoring some metal rocks on someone's street.  I've noted all of the relevant information about that so that I can compare the process with future restoration projects.  Mostly, what I want to know is:
  • How does the game calculate the total value of a project (how does it know what percent done you are)?
  • Does the total value of the project determine the imagination rewarded for it?
  • Is restoring things really worth it now or should we still clear and replace?
Answer will follow in the coming weeks.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Another Mystery Solved

Thanks to various forum posters in a now somewhat ironically named thread, we have solved yet another numerical mystery.  If you want to know how much imagination you will earn per day from the rock simply by existing, it's equal to your qurazy quoin value.  Of course usually when you pick up a quoin you'll be getting a 20% bonus from full mood, so you'll have to divide that by 1.2.

According to information from the developers, we know that this is 20% of the maximum you can earn from people visiting your street., so you could earn up to five times the base amount in extra imagination (so up to six times you qurazy quoin value per day).

Also thanks to this discussion we know how to compute that value for levels 22 and up.  If you happen to have glitch with a street no one visits, you get the same amount of imagination from the rock every game day, and you are below level 22, please post your level and the amount you get.  Just a couple more data points and we'll probably be able to put together the entire chart.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Energy and Mood, Apart at Last!

Note: This post has been written to replace my previous post about mood for my guide to buying more maximum energy.  If you want to see the guide, look at the bar on the right under "Interesting Things" (I'd put a link here, but I want to plug my interesting things, you know).

The title of this post is misleading because your energy tank and mood tank are actually still the same size.  What has changed in recent days, though, is how the size of your mood tank affects the amount of mood you lose periodically.

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

The Spice (Beans) Must Flow

The other day I did a detailed analysis of Chicken Eggs vs. Fruit Beans, but there is another competitor on the field that is worth mentioning: Spice Beans.

Using the same kind of analysis we can determine the cost of making a spice bean is:
28.8 currants (36 energy)
58.5 currants (9 plain bubbles)
28 currants (4 general vapour)
28 currants (4 carrots from the vendor)
6 currants (1 bean)

For a total of 149.3 currants.  The return you get is only 172 imagination or 184 currants of value.  So your profit is only 34.7 currants.  This takes less time than the spice beans at only 3.75 seconds but that's still a very low return of 9.25 currants per second.

If you gather the materials yourself then you only have to pick up 14 tree ingredients but you still have to pay for the carrots, so that drops the cost to 56.8, increasing your profit to 115.2 and your time to 8.6 seconds.  So still only 12.4 currants per second.

There was a time I made spice beans because my intuition told me that using things with vendor purchased ingredients was going to be better than things without them.  Unfortunately that intuition did not carry from chicken eggs to spice beans, and fruit beans are better if you like beats.

Now you could reasonably ask why I'm not doing this analysis for every bean and egg, but there are pretty good intuitive reasons why we know it won't come out in their favor, and I'll talk about those after the break.

Monday, 4 June 2012

Eggs vs. Beans: Fight!

A recent forum thread asked whether it was better to make beans or eggs.  In particular, the analysis focused on whether it was better to make Fruit Beans or Chicken Eggs.  Some helpful comments on that thread explained the imagination gained for making and donating each and the energy required to make them.  What I'd like to do is convert everything into equivalent units and talk about which is most favorable for the time you spend making them.

Thursday, 31 May 2012

Slower Mood Loss

I've updated my energy buying posts to reflect the fact that mood loss is slower with upgrades now.  It actually ends up making a really big different (especially coupled with larger stack sizes for transmuting).  Now I would say you are largely safe upgrading your energy to 4000-5000.  Exactly where the benefit drops off will depend on how you play.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Butterfly Milkers

First of all, Diablo 3 comes out tomorrow so I don't expect to be playing much Glitch for at least a few days, maybe even a few weeks.  As a result I probably won't have a lot to blog about, though I think I'll have to post something about the incredible cost of restoring objects in your street/house in the near future.

Until I get to that, though, here are some interesting things about butterfly milkers which probably apply to meat collectors as well.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Should you buy energy?

It turns out whether to buy maximum energy upgrades is a very complicated question.  I'd like to quickly go over some of the calculations that we can use to determine the value of maximum energy upgrades, and then talk about how to compare that to what we have to spend to get them.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

The Final Four

On to the fourth post on factors that affect maximum energy.  When I wrote the first post I expected to say that these factors wouldn't have much of an impact, but since then I've had some in game experience that has shown at least one of them to be potentially a big deal.

Monday, 7 May 2012

Energy and Mood, Together at Last, Again

Update: New upgrades will reduce your mood loss by one third, meaning 0.75% loss per minute instead of 1.5%.  I've redone the numbers using the 0.75% figure because if you are worrying about how much energy to buy you probably have a lot of upgrades and ultimately we'll get there.  I realize that a lot of people are having trouble finding the third card because it's super rare, though.

Also now updated for changes to Rookswort.

When you increase your maximum energy you also increase your maximum mood.  I already wrote about maximum mood and how it was strictly a negative thing.  As it turns out, your maximum mood is still tied to your maximum energy, so mood can be thought of as a penalty you have to suffer through in order to get more energy.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Full Energy Refills

The previous part talked about the four most basic factors in determining the value of energy: full refills each day, decay over time, teleport costs, and wanting to have a large enough pool to achieve certain conveniences.

Today we move onto items 5 though 7 on my list, the three other ways of getting full energy refills.  As a reminder, they are
  1. No-no crashes
  2. Get out of hell free cards
  3. Refills from buying energy tank upgrades
  4. Making crabs happy
All of these things can restore you to maximum energy, so lets talk about how they do it.  After I'll compare the effects of these energy refills with the base energy values I used as examples in the previous post.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Maximum Energy Basics

Are energy tank increases right for you?  It turns out this is not necessarily and easy question to answer, but it's getting easier.  I'm going to write a series of posts here explaining what you need to know to make an informed decision about increasing your energy tank.  There are still a minority of glitchen for whom increasing energy tank is detrimental rather than advantageous, but for the most part energy upgrades are a good thing.  Still, there's lots of math to do to identify how good they are and to identify that limited segment of the population who they are bad for.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Making Lots of Potions

Update: The imagination upgrades have changed how many seeds we get, how many herbs we get, and how sure we are about both.  I've updated the post to fix the numbers.

There was a recent forum post from someone looking for tips on how to maximize their efforts towards the potion badges.  1033 potions is a lot of work, and while you can certainly spend some of your efforts towards this badge doing useful things, ultimately you are probably going to just grind out several hundred potions.

For those with limited time or limited interest in the analysis, the recommendation is this: Grow gandlevery while you are online and yellow crumb flower while you are sleeping, at work or at school.  Make Charades Potions and Tree Poison Antidotes, unless you really don't care about money, in which case make Rainbow Juice and Tree Poison Antidotes.  Vendor the Charades Potions and sell the antidotes at auction.

Monday, 23 April 2012

More Mood!

Under the level system, energy and mood were always the same, but we don't have a good reason to think they will be the same under the character-upgrade-by-imagination system.  The fact that they were the same could be seen as an accident until now, for a somewhat anachronistic but personally-beloved meaning of "accident."

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

More Energy!

Since we are going to have to be choosing whether or not to get more maximum energy soon, we should probably know whether we want more maximum energy or not.  If you'd like to cut to the chase, click here to jump to my simple calculation.  Otherwise, enjoy the ride.

Monday, 16 April 2012

Level 60s and Badges

Over 400 glitchen have reached level 60 to date, and there is probably another week to go before xp goes away.  I still have the high score, naturally.

1009 Tinctures.  I was a little surprised this one took as long as it did.  It seems like I made so many tinctures that did not go into potions that I would have hit this way in advance of hitting the potion badge, but I suppose it's easy to overestimate how many things you've actually made.

5000 Herbs.  This one surprised me in the other way.  I thought I was going to get the top potion badge first.

1033 Potions.  It can't be much longer before I get this.  I have a very large pile of charades potions that were made after the 457 badge.  Obviously the number I need to get from point A to point B can't be larger than 576, so I have to be getting close.  Speaking of which, if you'd like a charades potion, feel free to request one.

Friday, 13 April 2012

Icons and Vendors

Oh boy, icons again!  Vendor prices have changed and that should change our evaluation of the worth of icons.  This time instead of whether we should be carrying them around - a question made irrelevant by free access to homes - I'll talk about the value you can extract from your icons in terms of currants and whether there is a good reason to be acquiring icons at this point.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Vendor Prices!

The new vendor prices are a little more complicated than they used to be, but not very complicated.  Prices at vendors, with a few exceptions, are set by two variables.  The first is the their base price for purchasing things from you, the second is their spread.

The price vendors buy at (or the price you sell at) varied by vendor before these changes.  Tool Vendor bought at 80%, most vendors at 70%, toy vendors at 60% and gardening tools at 50%.  Vendors still have this number, though it is no longer the real price they will buy from you at.

Each type of vendor also now has a spread.  This spread is subtracted from the price they buy from you at and added to the price of everything they sell.

For instance, Produce vendors still have a base buy price of 70%, but currently have a spread of 11%.  As a result, they will only buy from you for 59% of the item's base value and everything they sell it marked up to 111% of the base value.

Because spreads are currently very strange numbers like 11%, 8% and such, I expect they will change over time.  Keep an eye on them.

But as of this post, here are the base buy values, spreads and consequent buy and sell values for each vendor type.

Base Buy
Vendor Sells at
Vendor Buys at
Alchemical Tools Vendor
Animal Goods Vendor
Gardening Goods Vendor
Gardening Tools Vendor
Groceries Vendor
Hardware Vendor
Kitchen Tools Vendor
Meal Vendor
Produce Vendor
Tool Vendor
Toy Vendor
Uncle Friendly

Am I Back?

Is this blog still alive?  We'll soon see!

Hiatus.  Well obviously I disappeared for a few weeks there, partly thanks to the Diablo 3 beta (I will disappear again on May 15) and partly because of my disappointment with the early March housing release.  That's not to say that the housing release wasn't awesome in a way, but because it was just a test, there were limited furniture styles and everything was free there was nothing to work towards and not a lot of play to extract from it.  I thought early March was the big change to imagination.

Butterfly Milkers.  Having a large number of butterfly milkers means getting less milk per time.  I'm determining the actual formula.

"Nerf" to Vendors.  According to today's tweet there will be a bigger spread between vendor buy and sell prices.  This is going to have a huge economic impact and will probably be a sizable benefit to the wealthy at the expense of the less-wealthy.  I'll get into this more in a couple of days, first I have to see what the new prices are, plug some numbers into existing spreadsheets and built a new spreadsheet.  I like spreadsheets!

Friday, 16 March 2012


I'm on my second run through singing to butterflies to see how long they live, but the first run suggests that singing extends the life of a butterfly by 3 milks.

Keeping butterflies in your house is a pretty huge return on investment, though a slow one.  I'm going to stick with donation-based valuation because it leaves a lot of questions aside.  A butterfly egg is worth 400, so for 400 currants you get to make 3200 currants over the course of six and two-thirds real days.  It's 17.5 currants an hour for very minimal upkeep.

Friday, 9 March 2012

Nothing New Here

I have to admit I haven't gotten a lot of Glitch in this week, mostly thanks to the beta of a certain other game.

Longer-lived Butterflies.  I unwittingly did an experiment in letting my butterfly milker get full this week. It is reasonable to wonder whether a full milker continues to drain life from the butterflies or if the milk-taking event gets stopped short.  By not logging in for three days I probably got my answer as my butterfly is alive and well when it would have expired had I been emptying the milker.  Of course this is confounded by my singing experiment, but I should be able to separate the two issues and be sure that a full milker doesn't shorten a butterfly's life soon enough.

Diablo 3.  Now obviously Glitch and Diablo 3 have slightly different target audiences, so I'm not going to recommend all Glitch players jump on the Diablo 3 bandwagon, but wow is this game fun.  Right now it also has the distinction of probably being the only action game I've ever played that is actually easier than Glitch.  If you don't understand how that could be, my only answer is that I beat the final boss of the beta without touching my keyboard or mouse - in Glitch you will actually die if you wander away from the computer for long enough.  At any rate, I'm sure they will sort that out and I am looking forward to fighting the forces of evil at launch.

Friday, 2 March 2012

More Mining

When there is a fixed amount of a resource in the world, more people being after it means there is less for each person.  This is an obvious fact in reality, in Glitch, and in pretty much every other game.  In the particular case of mining in Glitch, more glitchen has a synergistic effect that speeds the mining of each glitch.  That means that what's there will be used up even faster, making it seem like there is even less to go around.

As I discussed in my previous, overlong post about mining, the primary source of extra chunks when people mine together is not the bonus chunks but the extra chunks that are generated because people get extra ticks after the rock has disappeared.

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Sally Noskills

While waiting for the housing change, I've spend a little time playing my alt, Sally Noskills, who has no skills.  Perpetually trapped in the early game, Sally provides an interesting perspective on what is fun and what is not fun.

Zoom!  Zoom has been incredible.  There has been so much to discover in the world when you can look outside the streets and see their entirety at once.

Second Butterfly Down.  This one gave exactly 400 milks.  Given my method of recording milks from the first, it's actually really hard for me to understand how I could have had an extra 38 on there, but I'm fairly sure I did.  At any rate, I'll be singing to this butterfly every day to see how much longer it lasts.

Eight Meat Collectors.  I have eight meat collectors in my house for my one piggy.  Unfortunately I am not noticing a uniform rate at which their are collecting meat.  With one it was definitely every 24 minutes just like the butterfly milker, but with eight I'm sometimes getting around the same and sometimes getting a lot less.  I makes me wonder if the way the "slowdown" works is that there is just a chance that a tick doesn't happen.  Of course I'm also worried that the piggy not being petted might complicated the issue. After I'm done with the butterfly experiment I might try timing with milkers since that prevents any petting-related problems.  Maybe I should get an alt house somewhere and start now.  I can't see this as being a violation of the community guidelines since I wouldn't actually be getting any in-game benefit, it's purely for science.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Icon Update

My Icon experiments have not stopped - nor are they likely to in the near future - and I have some
additional results to share.  Some of this might not be entirely coherent if you haven't read my previous post on Icons.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Icons Love Money

Icons Reward Tithing.  It turns out the first action you take with an icon after tithing to it is more rewarding than actions that follow.  The average revere immediately after tithing was 50% larger than the average of other reveres.  Of course this doesn't change anything about how you interact with your icons, except that maybe you'll be willing to revere them when you have more energy, knowing that you aren't going to get a 1700 energy revere if you didn't just tithe.

Exhausted Butterflies.  My butterfly gave 438 milks before returning to Humbaba, and another Mathemaglitchian's gave 400.  We are both doing another test.  I'm not sure at this point whether to suspect that the amount of milks given is random or whether to suspect that it is 400 and I made a mistake.  I'll double check my times against the number of milks produced to make sure it stayed at one every 24 minutes.

Badges.  In addition to getting the leaderboards high score in a facetious way, I also collected some big badges this weekend: Paul Bunions, Senior Mending Manager, Kitchen Division, and Chute Jockey.  I also picked up my 811st potion pour, though that pretty much comes free with bunions.  It had been 12 days since I earned a badge and then I got four just over 24 hours.  Unfortunately my lack of desire to play Game of Crowns will make me a perennial 20th+ place on the badge leaderboards (which, by the way, are the real leaderboards).

Tuesday, 21 February 2012


Meditation Experiments.  I tried out meditation a lot this week and posting my findings on the Glitch Wiki.  Most notable is that I previously thought Bubble Tea didn't work with Rank 3 meditation.  I assumed the two different +100% bonuses didn't stack.  It turns out it just doesn't work right with normal meditation at all regardless of rank, but it works fine with focused meditation and transcendental radiation.  This is now posted as a bug on the bugs forum.

Startling Fecundity.  I decided to start testing this stuff to see what it is worth.  Unfortunately, it seems that it is probably not worth using at all.  Nothing conclusive yet, but after a couple of throws on animal-packed streets I am pretty sure I am not getting my 300 currants a charge worth.  The problem is that there is a limit on the number of animals it will affect, and it will affects chickens which only give 10 currants worth of goods when affected.  I'm going to have to try this stuff at home with a controlled animal environment.

High Score!  I have finally earned the high score on the leaderboards.  If you don't know what I'm talking about, compare this with this.  Maybe I should have some kind of party?  I understand there are party organizers who help with this sort of thing.

Friday, 17 February 2012

Make Mine Mining

I really like mining math.  The reason I like it so much is that the math is super simple and the consequences of it are incredibly complex.  Here is a quick rundown of how mining works:
  • When you mine you generate a random number of chunks
  • To that number is added a bonus for each time someone used the "Help Mine" action
  • The total number of chunks received is subtracted from the number of chunks remaining in the rock  if the rock is out of chunks it disappears
These simple rules give rise to so many unintended consequences.  For those of you who don't like reading through swaths examples and math, here is what you need to know about mining, in short:
  • If you had your choice, you would better off being by yourself in the area you are mining; but
  • Given that other glitchen are around, you are all better off helping each other mine

Thursday, 16 February 2012

How Embarassing!

In a humbling example of why you should always double check you numbers before talking about things, I have discovered that my understanding teleportation costs for lower ranks of the skill were way off.  In fact, the actual cost of teleportation for ranks 1 through 4 is pretty much what I was suggesting they change the cost to in my maximum energy policy paper!

So, on one hand I was a total idiot.  On the other hand, apparently TS agrees with my instinct for what the cost of teleportation should be.  I've amended the policy paper and still suggest changing meditation to be maximum energy based, and reducing the extremely high value of quoins in the Ancestral Lands but also reducing their respawn time so that players can get the same effect from a visit but use up more of their maximum quoins per day to do so.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

New Banner

I've put up a banner on the site that was gracefully provided by Muncey Mango.  I appreciate the theme and especially the small humbaba symbol.  My understanding is that more may be coming, and I hope to have updates from time to time.  Eventually I may look at some redesign away from the pre-packaged blogger theme, but I think it looks quite nice so I'm in no hurry.

Monday, 13 February 2012

Mining, how does it work?

I have a couple of projects on the go right now.

Butterfly singing.  We know that singing to butterflies makes the live longer, but we don't know how much longer.  Right now myself and another Mathemaglitch member each have one butterfly and one milker in our yards and are in the process of determining how many milks a butterfly gives before it dies.  Once we know how many milks a butterfly gives, and whether it is a random or a fixed number, we can try to figure out how much singing expands that number.  Results so far: Butterfly milkers tick once every 24 minutes, generating 10 milks per game day.

Rocks contain 50 chunks.  Well, about one in six or seven rocks contains 150 chunks.  I'll caveat this by saying it's speculation, but at this point it is pretty well supported speculation.  Even though rocks have 50 chunks, you usually get more than 50 chunks from a rock.  That's because the game always gives you the full amount of chunks from the mining action, even if the rock you are mining doesn't have enough.  So each action gives the same amount, regardless of the number of chunks remaining, but once the total mined adds to 50 the rock disappears.  I'll have more information about mining in the near future.

The value of everything.  I'm working on a giant spreadsheet that will let you calculate all kinds of useful things about crafting.  I'm just about to cut and paste all the information about every cooking recipe into it and then I can do some debugging.  After that I'll work on other recipes.  If anyone has any suggestions for how to assign values to elements I'd be very interested.

Friday, 10 February 2012

Icons at Home

Last week I talked about carrying icons around with you, but I didn't address leaving them at home.

Leaving icons at home is good because of Giant Love, but it somewhat restricts your ability to use them as energy sources since you have to be in a specific place to do so.  If you regularly visit your home and use them when you are there anyway this is a good deal.  For many Glitchen, however, using icons at home will mean teleporting home and teleporting back.  Since this couldn't possibly be viable without teleportation 5, I'll just assume that we have it.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Now with Group

I had decided to pace myself by making only one post a week, but it turns out I'm not good at not saying things.  So I'm going to permit myself two, but save the analysis for Fridays only.

Levitation Does Not Count as Meditation.  This week I took up the challenge of answering a question from DUG1138 in the General forum.  I made myself a little glitch friend, got him a lab coat, learned levitation, and levitated 345 times.  If you are curious about the number, levitation lasts 5 seconds and the smallest badge is 23 minutes, so 276 levitations should do the trick, but I was concerned there might be an off-by-one error, so I assumed levitation would only add 4 seconds to the count.  The result: no badge.

Orange Hair.  Last night, on the 7th of Candy, Li'll Missy suggested having a party for Innie to celebrate the fact that her human accidentally died her hair orange.  We all donned orange themed costumes and hair and decorated a party space with orange food and drinks.  You can see a forum post with a link to a picture here.  I sort of like the change, so I'm going to keep the orange hair for a little while.  The only downside is that it doesn't go with my octopus, so for a little while I'll be showing my antlers instead.

Mathemaglitch Group.  I decided to start an official group for Mathemaglitch.   I'd like to have a place where people can ask questions like "Does levitation count as meditation" or "Is tithing worth it?" and other people can find answers.  Obviously I'm using this blog as a vehicle for that, but I'd like to have a link back into the game.  Of course I am not one to do recruitment drives and that most groups fairly rapidly become defunct and silent, so I don't exactly have my hopes up.  If nothing else, though, I wanted to see how starting a group works.  For Science!

Friday, 3 February 2012


I've spoken up in a couple of forum threads about whether it is worth it to tithe to icons.  Being level 60, I never use them for mood or xp, but for the last few weeks I have been carrying all eleven icons around in my bags to revere when I get low on energy.

Tithing to icons at high level is somewhat expensive so it seems a lot of people choose to stop tithing and, consequently, to stop revering.  I've posted a couple of estimates suggesting that it is indeed efficient to use tithe and revere, but without data I felt the need to be very conservative in my estimates.

I now have more than 300 icon uses to average, so I can be pretty confident that my estimates are reasonable.  I'm made more confident because in the last 100 uses the average has only changed by around 5.  It's not dead on, I'm sure, but it's not way off either.  In the end, I averaged 709 energy per revere and 4 reveres per tithe.  That's 0.49 currants per energy.  Tithing seems to be an efficient way to turn currants into energy.