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More interesting items/ideas for a Bioshock Rapture MMORPG
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. Part 36
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State of Electrics/Electronics in Rapture :
Base tech is late 1940s (after major advances during WW2) and new stuff into early 50s (with most surface 'tech' being brought in to Rapture upto time of Civil war). Some of the 'smuggled' goods were actually technology Surface improvements would always be sought for products in Raptures competitive environment and this included manufaturing techniques and material processing. (Products for limited customers might only warrant smuggling the objects themselves).
It is possible that additional information was later (post BS1/BS2) brought from 'the Surface'. We dont know what all else happened in the rest of Rapture, even as to what Sofia Lamb did - since we know she had some links to the Surface, but may have been wholey uninterested at improvements for mere people.
Printed Circuit boards (invented 1903) - fundamental in mass producing/miniturizing devices, which also lead to modularizing/standardizing of parts.
- TV cameras, including biologics - using fish/slug eye tissues, infrared systems
- Masers (1957) and Lasers (1960)
- Water level/Fire/Smoke Sensors for structural sefety
- Light amplification
- Optical detectors and triggers (interesting to use a Friend-Foe tag that was a certain paint color with specific color frequencies or encoded flashing patterns --- The Novel mentions this for the Sucurity scanners added at the start of the Civil War)
- Alot of Telepresence (remote control construction machinery) was used in building Rapture (1946) in its unfriendly environment.
- Miniature radios (including TV transmission/reception - like the one in Delta's suit)
- Relays/Repeaters to make sure the radio signals got thru (alot like WIFI hotspots), since radio waves work miserably thru water and inside buildings.
- Data signals/Networking - not just for computers, but for alot of automatic devices and sensors (leak sensors all over the City you would think would be a very good idea).
X-isters (known as transisters (1949) in the outside world) - going from tubes to X-isters changed alot of things, allowed miniturization of many electronic devices and lowered costs/increased reliability/allowed mass production.
Bio-Circuitry (Rapture unique, made possible by ADAM tech) - Bio-Logic :
- Biolgical based electronics (with/without ADAM use) - induced logic patterns for certain useful functions that would take multiple thousand (even millions) of bulky Xisters (transisters) to duplicate. Made possible sophisticated robotics and other technological control and sensor devices.
- Computer logic circuitry :
--- -- The Thinker (not just the circuits but the programming/organizing techniques)
--- -- Holographic Memory (brain cell soup to store huge masses of information )
--- -- Bio disks for mass complex logic circuitry (components that can take the place of circuit with many thousand of transisters)
--- -- Artificial (Semi) Intelligence for robots and automation
Magnetics - recording media (including tape, drum/disk drives), electronic machines, tags for routing Pneumo capsules
X-ray advancements (offshoot of Ryan's many experiments with high energy technology )
Electrically powered Bioluminescence (for very low power lighting systems) - very high efficiency
'Home' Computers (size of a small car) -- developed in Rapture for more convenient computing. Technical improvements greatly expanded their capabilities year by year. Tying them together into some kind of 'network' might be done (as would the having a remote terminal connected thru a phone data line to a shared computer). Computationl capabilities increased by magnitudes which assisted many other types of research and development.
BrainWave sensors ??? Biological tissues could potentially be sensitive to brain/nervous system emanations (especially with genetic enhancements and electronic amplification -- its a bit of a stretch, but still physically possible), It also may not be anything like 'reading thoughts' but just activity that gives away clues that could be detected/interpretted.
Controls for high-powered machinery (regulators for devices which will easily self-destruct if not continually/instantly adjusted) Ex - Plasma cutting head for oil wells or mass cutting rock has a feedback system to handle environmental variations, continuiously allowing the device to cut 10X faster than the old hand regulated systems. Similar devices were used for mass production of certain materials widely used in constructing Rapture.
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Clocks in Rapture (Rapture Standard Time) :
In the MMORPG the clocks would be working again (if they arent they will be slated for work by players to bring them back into operation).
Time will probably be accelerated (?? how to do this on clocks if the player is watching ??) so that the daily cycles in the attempted-realistic simulation will play thru in a more convenient play-time. The time-of day differences in routine (for shops and such) will be more apparent and accessible.
A 2-hour or 90-minute day ?? Player has to wait fo his favorite shop to be open (or at City Hall to file the paperwork for that Bounty on Clock Parts). The Team lackey NPCs fortunately can (be tasked to) wait in line for such mundane things, and Rapture being a modern city DOES have many 24-hour convenient services.
Out in the Ruins, time might not be that significant (and who knows what crazy hours Splicers keep)
Most of Rapture is deep enough that you cannot see any sign of the sun (for thoroughness I would have there be some sign of sunlight in the tallest buildings (within 200 feet of the surface) and certainly visible for in-water submarines and missions that take player to/near the surface (including an interesting set of weather effects for the North Atlantic too).
Clocks and watches (preferable water-proof ones) would be common player accessories and daily schedules for the 'Team' minion NPCs are all part of the details and tracking of Tasks.
Dimming of the lights at the 'night periods' would be done in parts of old Rapture and no doubt would continue in the reborn City. That would help vary the environments appearance (and activities) for the game. The neat Neon effects look much more impressive in near darkness. Night cyles for the lamplight effects.
Idea for the 'idea bin' - some crazed Splicer group who worship an old clock. Im sure some Player Creator could come up with some interesting story material for something like that.
Bioshock 'Infinite' Assets now available for the Bioshock Rapture MMORPG :
Many of the objects are useable -- more than a few look like they belong in post-1946 Rapture much more than they might in the 1912 which Infinite purports to represent (maybe in the Bizarro Universe...).
Some of the vending/other machines look like they could fit in a Rapture Penny Arcade. Modified items for the Carnival...
Lots of period decorative items can be use in residences as alternate stylings (not everything has to be Art Deco).
Human figures (if not the clothing)
Mining preexisting assets is a primary way of saving money, to be used instead to move other game features forward (far forward -- and they will need it and more).
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Early Rapture, First Construction :
Light House - not just that big tower, but all the machinery/infrastructure used for construction and transfering all the materials from ships downward. Artificial Island built up at that point of the old volcano's old crater edge.
The Work Domes used to initially house the construction worker population. Tram system tunnels interconnecting domes and worksites. http://img845.imageshack.us/img845/4712/constructiondomex.png
Location of phase 1 at Welcome Center
Hotel Monsenor - first real accomodations - important for staff operations - better accomodations for workers (months in dank barracks doesnt help with morale). Expanded transportation allowed workers from all over to use this facility.
Geothermal power - Hesphaestus Core #1 came online and construction moved into full swing (no longer dependant on limited power running off barges on surface or on the Lighthouse Island). Expansion of the 'grid' -- mainlined first to Welcome center.
Atlantic Express lines hauling massive amounts of construction materials and workers efficiently (city construction actually wore out alot of the initial system).
Quarry & Cement plant (most of what you see of Rapture IS Concrete) First thing Rapture was self-sufficient producing (huge amounts of cement would have require huge numbers of additional boat shiploads across the Atlantic).
'The Sinker' and pre-fabs -- whole building sections had been constructed elsewhere (at Ryan owned facilities) Much easier to build them near/at surface and join them together down below (the structural walls you see in the extended maps).
Submarines and automation - more high-tech than grunt labor. Lots and lots of machines did much of the work.
Guys in diving suits only did some of the trickier construction situations.
Resource production needed creating/building before any large number of people could arrive. The air systems were the first priority (not just for people to breath, but also for all the industry systems).
Initial manpower for all the support systems preceded the primary population, who had to have a working 'city' environment (they dont mention enough the preparations for all this - it could NOT just be thrown together).
Flashback sequences for the players to experience those early days while Rapture was being established.
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Players like Achievements - What kind should be in the MMORPG ? :
Obviously there would be a place to see them and show them off (add one more interface to game and smartphone activity).
To start, an interesting idea (along lines already discussed) is to have Players create them (additional ones ontop of a basic set). They can be serious ones, funny ones, hard challenge ones, easy ones. Obviously they need to be vetted by the Creation Community. 'Achievements' tied to specific Quests obviously are included as part of the Quest Assets, or can be later appended to it. Early developers would want to define some kind of classification scheme to figure out what constitutes an 'Achievement'.
Some 'Achievements' may be tied closely to game mechanics (ex- Death from Above" - landing on and knocking out an 'opponent' by jumping from sufficient height...) to record particular interactions and results. This requires programming inside the game engine (thus should be well planned/designed in advance). As usual, employ modularity to streamline such programming and to maximize utility.
The 'Civic' Achievements are closely tied to game mechanics as they enable City Roles and access to various resources. In game activities will have ramps of character development and advancement which will tie in to their own 'Achievements'.
There can be multitudes of quirky (but still real) achievenments that payers get awarded - the suprise/amusement factor - for many players these are of interest even if they dont amount to much else in the game.
Leaderboards and such (standard features these days) would for players who are interested in competing in such things....
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Weird Place in/near Rapture - Leviathan Awaits :
A section of buildings pressurized to ambient sea pressure (~20 atm) open to the ocean (possibly expanded into shipwreck hulls ... why not?)
Weird (real) effects at that high pressure - sound travels oddly thru the thicker air, water-vapor condenses much easier, visible vapors. It is almost an alien environment (different enough to suprise the player who enters it).
An Oxygen environment is much more explosive at that pressure (dont try smoking cigarettes - we are still trying to figure out how Jack/Delta in Daddy suits were able to smoke...).
Inhabitants would do alot of fishing, but the water is still frickin cold. (I recall a bucket in AE Depot with a fishing rod, but that really only works there if you fished in the airlock chambers - but lights do attract fish at that depth...)
Plants to generate the needed oxygen (water electrolysis for emergencies) . Lights - could have mostly bioluminescence because electrics dont like the dampness. Still tapped into the utility power systems (heat is good). Clothing woven out of seaweed - could be done.
You cannot visit except in a diving hardsuit (eventually there are ones you can access). Nitrogen Narcosis and Oxygen Toxicity can quickly be fatal.
Big Daddies can get to this place, but dont seem able to fix it (to pressure seal and restore it to normal pressure).
Gill people?? Not needed. People there might not even be Splicers (actually got away from Rapture's mayhem...)
Big Daddy type genetic Tonics/Plasmids might have been needed for inhabitants to exist at this pressure.
Why visit them ?? Some contrived trade mission for something they have/can get which isn't easy for us "low-pressure-dwellers" ...
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Audio Diary Portrait - Yet another Creation Tool :
Additional Audio Diaries would be one of the many Assets that can be created for the MMORPG by players. One simple part of the Audio Diary is the picture that goes with it (in the game, it is more a mnemonic device that allows you to recognize the speaker quickly). Framing, filtering, Sepia-tone coloring are all straight-forward picture processing functions. So this would be one of the many Tools available (possibly tool improvements created by some Player). Perhaps it (or several competing tools) need only be a plugin to one of the Open Source/Free graphics editing programs. It could even be online on a website/server (picture-in upload, picture-out copy-n-paste).
An important aspect of supplying/submitting such an Asset is that no Copyrighted material would be allowed, and the individuals picture (if real) should require permission of some kind to use (and release documentation even if of the author themselves, just to cover the usual legal issues). Likely, achieving that vetting might be much more work than processing the picture itself.
Website with Online MMORPG Tools :
Certainly there would be a distribution/download site for PC installed tools, but some tools might also simply be used online (example - the Audio Diary picture converter mentioned above). The Asset Creation Tool suite would be quite extensive, with many complicated functions and uses (integrating Assets from many medias and file-types, editors, converters, validators, testing systems, tie-ins to the community publishing servers, etc...). Not every Player will do all the variety of creation activities, but many may specialize in providing partial data to others, thus requiring a minimized set of tools.
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Interesting In-Game Sign - Reward for Smuggler Info :
All those heavy handed contrived plot-line machinations - we are told how addictive ADAM was and how it allegedly drove so many to the disasterous extremes we witnessed. It is very odd that Ryan's men could across several years never seem to find Fontaine's smuggling operation (with large fixed facilities at Smugglers Hideout - rather hard to cover up for long).
Here (in the picture) we have plenty enough (300) ADAM offered for such info to make any Splicer salivate and cutoff their own toes to get ahold of. More than enough to persuade a multitude of informants to not just inform but maybe even deliver Fontaine's head on a platter -- no matter what coercion he was capable of.
A little more care should have been given to make this much more plausible (design it right, and it does not cost any more money to create the story correctly). (( Again, yes its a blast-fest game and alot of this stuff is window-dressing for that. But they obviously went to frequent efforts to make the game plots more than two dimensional, and doing it right only takes the desire to actually do so.))
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Even before Rapture was 'Closed Off' :
SO import inspections were done and various 'contraband' prohibited/prevented/intercepted.
--- Looking for diseases that would affect people, animals and plants.
--- Inexpensive products that might interfere with Rapture's own goal to be Self-Sufficient. List of such items would have expanded as immigrants set up their production in Rapture. Likely tariffs would have to be paid to achieve price parity of similar items, and tariffs would pay for the inspection process. The external overhead costs to get many ordinary products into Rapture may already effectively do this.
--- Propaganda from sources contrary to Rapture's Philosophy would be blocked. Items that would make citizens nostalgic for the Surface World likewise.
--- Dangerous items (and/or ones not being handled properly) -- ie- Radio-Isotopes that could poison huge areas of Rapture accidentally.
--- Communications with outsiders that might endanger Rapture's security, secrecy.
Even allowed items not covered above would need to go thru controlled channels to protect Raptures secrecy.
--- Useful technical information and tools from the Surface would probably face no prohibition (would still have to be checked thru).
--- Resources which Rapture could never produce would be being stockpiled (the Hundred Year Stockpile).
--- Luxury goods might have some premium levied on their import which would help pay for the general external security measures (every item that comes into Rapture has some security risk potential).
--- Items brought WITH new immigrants are handled seperately and add to Rapture's net wealth (and prosperity when they are business/production/manufacturing related). There may have been virtually no volume limit on what came as long as the immigrant paid for the transport overhead -- again via standard security controlled channels).
--- Exports also. Something has to be used to pay for any imports. Excessive outflow of 'things of value' to pay for the imports. Anything that might hint at Rapture's existance. Money that was slowly liquidated from the inhabitanats past Surface lives would be available for this purpose.
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Why should Ryan show (some) admiration for Fontaine while disparaging Sinclair ?? :
More strawman rubbish from the devs, when Ryan most certainly SHOULD have already known what a scum bucket/criminal Fontaine was already??? Fontaine's unlawful gangsterism could hardly be kept secret.
Sinclair was an opportunist ? and somehow Fontaine was not ? Sinclair didnt believe in the 'Great Chain' but was still in it for himself (which was still a large part of Ryan's Philosophy and Sinclair went ALONG with Ryan's system instead of trying to break it as Fontaine did).
Are they implying that Sinclair cheated people? Did they ever show any evidence of that?
And even then, 'Let the buyer beware' was the watchword in Rapture's Philosophy -- where you are responsible for your own decisions.
Sinclair a 'huckster' ? Ryan would understand that small businesses/niches would make up more of Rapture's economy than the larger big-market type industries of the Surface World (the equivalent of many of those Rapture was far too small to support).
Inconsistency from developers who have to make the characters mouth whatever is convenient to set the tone they are contriving.... More 'laying it on thick' to make Sinclair out as a dodgy character.
Part of the puzzle/challenge of the MMORPG will be trying to resolve such inconsistencies (careful vetted to make it all fit together logically).
To Splice or Not to Splice - that is the Conundrum :
Ryan Splicing his forces (McDonagh mentions), but did that include coercing his non-Splicer loyalists/citizens to Splice ? Or was that mainly for already existing Splicers which he upgraded (and probably used improved Plasmids/Tonics to stabilize) - if not also the Pheromone-Control (an insane army isnt of much use).
Sinclair's product testing "Home Consumer Rewards Program"/"Sinclair Solutions Tester Pack" (from Multiplayer Game - civil war period). Were these ever advertised in BS2 ???
There is that poster requesting "all unmodified Citizens to report " ( http://www.game-archivist.com/rapture/img/museum/signs/fullsize/Rapture_Notice_To_Report.jpg ) likley NOT for Splicing, rather for arming and organizing defensive measures. Its real a bad/stupid idea for the people needed to maintain/supply Rapture to be affected adversely... like driving them insane via ADAM. ADAM was in short supply, so guns and ammo would be, if not cheaper, the way to increase Ryan's force strength.
Limits for Glitzy Graphics Effects :
The Game's graphics quality would be sufficient if kept similar in quality to those seen in BS1/BS2, which were adaquate in detail and appearence. That would allow a reasonable hardware target to be used for Players (for the time the MMORPG would be likely to come out, years in the future). No real need for some new EVER MORE Glitzy Quality for (splitting of hairs) minor-improvements, which continually increases GPU load for a typical MMORPG scene. The advances in processing capacity would be used for this MMORPG's expanded dynamic object game world (ie- no more 'baked' static terrain). There would be much more-numerous interactive objects to be rendered/animated (we have seen the quality, now for a more realistic quantity).
Some game objects/things which were caricatures might be sized better (scale closer to real size) and the particle/atmospheric effects might be more varied. There may be more detailed closeups (faces in particular -- when did you really need to look at any Splicer's face that closely?? - you dont ever 'talk' to them. and their emotes were rather limited). Friendly (or at least non-batshitcrazy) NPCs might be more interesting with more facial game aspects to explore/employ.
There always can be some better lighting effects (more light sources, including dynamics if we have vehicles or destructable/controllable light sources).
Being able to see further (rendering further away objects) for the vistas ... We do have some places in Rapture that would be nice (including the expanded undersea Cityscape views).
There still will be plenty of the dark creepy places (perhaps even better ones) in this game.
Cape Horn - Hydraulic Power Station (example city addition) :
There would be a location near Rapture where prevailing ocean currents are channeled up a ravine in the contours of the submerged volcano (Mt Ryan) and consistantly flows extra fast. Water turbines were installed to take advantage of that flow. Construction was a bit tricky with the strong currents and turbulance, and maintenance expenses were comparable to the Geothermal generating systems. The system fell into disrepair during the disruptions of the Civil War and were eventually shutdown.
A Player Mission may be to a similar operation maintained by one of the surviving Outer Rapture communities (who are running out of replacement parts - possible mission to trade with them)??
An Idea like this would be proposed in the Player Creation Community, calling for a number of players to compose the whole set of game Assets for such a new Location -- with its terrain, mechanisms, NPC personalities associated with it, possible Quests/Missions that would make use of it, etc... Over time it would be designed, pieced together, tested and added to the Server World as a new destination for Players to interact with.
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Business Example #1 - Ketchup for the Masses :
Standardized game mechanims (research, comodity handling, (food) fabrication process, sales interactions, consumer consumption interactions) to be employed with customized details (In-Game tools available to create the various custom Assets using predefine 'Template' interactions).
Tomatoes are not that hard to grow in small amounts (on window-sill gardens) and are good hydroponic candidates for mass production.
Vinegar and salt are common (we have vineyards (cheap wine vinegar) and an ocean full of seasalt)
Sugar may be needed (sugarbeets more workable than sugarcane, corn sugars also possible)
Coloring ?? If the tomatoes are a bit anemic ?? Red dyes which arent too toxic are available.
Filler (dont want it too thin) -- corn starch, tomatoe pulp, fiber from kelp ???
Production facilities - 'Kitchen' for initial operations 'runs', Scale-up production with added equipment later (mass fabrication Formulas, of many degrees/increments/upgrades). NPC employees with required Skills.
May need to experiment/test (R&D) with Formulas to get good balance (does anyone in Rapture remember what Ketchup tasted like ???) Research to see what turns up - finding old recipes would be good. Samples found in the Ruins.... Taste tests (for this product at least). Bottle of 10 year old ketchup ?? Smugglers still exist to get some from the Surface (at a price and risk...)
Packaging - bottles of right shape, though jars could be initially used if no other option (some customers like restaurants/cafeterias will buy BULK in cans) Have a deal with customers to buy back/return container empties, with deposits, etc...
Product Labeling - hand labeling for initial runs, Printed when expansion is past 'kitchen' production stage.
Sales - many restaurants will want a decent ketchup to cover up the shortcomings of their food. Advertising - what would Rapture (even New Rapture) be without product advertising?
Processing - stock material accumulation, mixing, boiling, packaging/sealing, warehousing product, sales & distribution(+transport)
- Mixer (skilled to match required taste/ proportions / compensations)
- Stock/material handler
Expansion - Cut out the middleman :
--- Warehousing space
--- Bulk customer packaging (including cans)
--- Setup/organize (Player's) self-farming for many of the ingredients
--- --- Tomatoes - Hydroponic works well
--- --- Vineyard takes longer, vinegar making from bulk grapes is possible?? Corn and other ethanol sources
--- --- Spices, various flavoring elements bought or self-grown can also be used.
--- Business Deals for bulk production of glass containers
--- Bulk salt making
--- --- Sea water - boil it (expand heating pipes from utilities)
--- --- Purify it (filtering crap out of seawater - bake it)
--- --- Pick out 'obvious' stuff from dried salt (coloring not critical as it is going into a mix)
--- Large-scale production
--- --- Bottle works - warranted only if business grows really big (seperate fabrication production )
--- --- Centralized warehouse/distribution
--- --- Long term production contracts (pre-orders) with NPCs or Players
--- Secondary products (secondary related businesses)
--- --- Fresh tomatoes (raw produce for retail sale)
--- --- Tomato paste/sauce (spaghetti !!!)
--- --- Special formula variations (steak sauce, shrimp sauce, chili based flavors)
--- --- Excess product of ingredient productions
--- --- Bottle making, extended for sale to other companies/products
How would this (above) example in-game production process simplify and break down for the Player???
The Formula Interface would have nice iconic tokens for objects involved (materials/skills/tools/machines).
Formulas for basic/mass scale of production would be defined. Production runs in batches (phased Formula production process) -- Prefer drag-n-drop interfaces and cached interface configurations (stored/reuseable patterns) to reduce tedious duplication of interface activity.
Inventory icon and visible 3D objects (including variants of containers)
Ketchup is classified as a 'semi-fluid' (and thus 'dividable'), 'semi-luxury', 'food-accessory', 'edible' 'consumable' and as a 'positive-quality-modifier'. Flavor itself is arbitrary and 'ketchup-like' becomes a template for similar products.
Similar production processes could be used to manufacture bullets, or glues for leak repairs (yum).
How does such a product fit into the New Rapture City Economy and actions of the Citizens (Players and NPCs) ?
Produced Items have a 'standard-of-living' Quality aspect that guides general NPC object buying behaviors ( and Businesses who purchase item for their customer's related use --- a Five Star Restaurant doesnt have cheap disgusting Ketchup).
In-Game Product Development process (Player decides to work on defining a product to produce in New Rapture)
--- Requirement of Existing basic definitions/details/attributes (the Asset Creation Community created set of patterns previously for objects LIKE this one) there may be a stepwise (more standardized) quality improvement ramp system. Options would exist to customize the products features (to make it different somehow from similar items...)
--- Research/experimentation effort In-Game (activities) by Player to establish/enable a Custom Formula (the research difficulty for this type of item is defined by a human designer initially (higher quality and desireability as a consumer items takes more research and effort (and sometimes luck)...).
--- Competing products can exist at different quality levels and have minor (cosmetic) variations. 'Quality' may often have to be 'by definition' (attributes) than by apparent In-Game visible appearance (how do you really make an inventory Icon obviously represent a better quality Ketchup ???..... ditto for a 3D visible object ?).
The Player could create a 'branding' which will have the product linked to an advertising name/theme/slogan/asset. Marketing of the product would have ads placeable in various In-Game media (Player pays for it, expecting it to bring customers) and game mechanics would have that affect NPC's buying habits.
The advertising has a simulated effect on NPCs (Players can make of them what they will...)
The standard In-Game semi-automatic business processing (Players's NPCs carrying on when assigned the task). Player should NOT have to deal with excessive complexity/tedious details to operate a business once they are setup. :
--- Obtaining required supplies (likely from other businesses/clearinghouse) -- this should be straight-forward (no cancellations caused by flakey Players or easily monopolization).
--- Manufacturing follows the Formula (NPCs do repetitions). Selling product onwards to be facilitated by mechanism for persistant 'contracts'/'deals' to continue automatic purchase or consignments. (many will be NPCs in the simulated market).
--- A Business Status Interface shows the player what is happening with their ongoing production, what any problems are, potentials for improvements, inventories, past history, etc... Player need not interact for it to continue, BUT a player's control interactions can bring better business performance and efficiency (and profits).
--- Many of the NPC businesses will operate on automatic like this, so the mechanism to run the Player's business 'hands-off' will largely be there. This is all also a simplified economy system, so it wont be "Rocket Science" to program the game mechanisms for it.
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