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by The Second Best of Noahs Second Country. . 223 reads.

Testlandia Inflation, Pumpty Dumpty, and more! Card News, edition 2

Testlandia Inflation, Pumpty Dumpty, and more!

May 17, 2020

Card News, edition 2

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Terminology for the unaware:

Pull Event - An event where people open packs when a card is on the market, in order to abuse what’s known on the as ‘The Cards Anti-Laundering System’(TCALS), which is designed to prevent excessive and easy transfers. In this system, the probability of pulling a card is higher when it is on the market, and new bids/matches trigger a higher chance of pulling as well. Typically, cards will be found immediately after a bid or new match.

Cards Discord - A great way to increase your farming efficiency, talk to the top farmers, make trades, acquire cards, and have fun!

Leto's Next Move: Pumpty Dumpty

The only deflation attempt this week

Leto II Atreides has confirmed their intentions to crash high value cards via the actions of Pumpty Dumpty. The nation sports the discord trend downwards emoji, as well as 6 cards, all of which have been pull event victims in the past. None of the cards were deflated this week, but there was an attempt on Mindless Contempt. However, only one seller took the bait, meaning the Mindless Contempt is still riding high... for now. Many MC owners are at the edge of their seats, waiting for an event to catalyze a crash.

The TCALS debate
[no image available]
Of course, Pumpty Dumpty is just another element in play of the growing tensions over the state of The Cards Anti-Laundering System. To avoid bias, here's a link to the thread posted in Technical: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=485209.
As of right now, no changes have been made to the system.
Here's the stance from all sides of the debate:
The Northern Light:

Ever since the bid mechanic was discovered, the anti-laundering system has become completely exploitable.

What is worse is that this is an exploit that primarily favors players with big card farms, who can trivially stock up large amounts of decks and open them during self-created "pull events". Additionally, the competitive way in which the anti-laundering system works (a card pulled by one player is a card that all other players can no longer pull until new bids are placed) leads to an arms race of scripts, browser plugins, and so on, that are meant to accelerate pack opening during the pull events. This makes it even more difficult for casual players to benefit from this exploit, and it further concentrates power in the biggest farmers. (I say all these as a person that is in this category, and benefits from the exploit.)

Another problem with this exploit is that it comes essentially free of risk. Given that you can increase your bids by 0.01, you can have a card on the market for hours upon hours without spending more than 4-5 bank (an amount negligible given that the bids themselves are typically more than 500 bank). One could argue that the fact that the auction lasts longer means your bank is at greater risk of being heisted. But this is typically counterbalanced by the fact that, given that the bidding player pulls so many cards, they can use these copies to easily defend against heists. Even if some bank is lost, the pulled cards more than make up for it. (I am once again speaking from personal experience here.) And of course, players can always do their pull events at times when there is not much market activity (e.g., early morning ET), further reducing the risk. All these combined make the exploit essentially free of risk.

The argument that the price will adjust accordingly is not very convincing, as it generally does not happen in practice. For example, we recently held a pull event for the Soops season 1 card. The card remains the most valuable in the game, despite the fact that 40 copies of it were spawned. The reason why price adjustment does not work goes back to what I said above: the new copies are generally owned by a small group of players, corresponding to systematic farmers. These players can choose to just keep the cards in their deck for their market value, and never trade them. With no trades, the value never changes. And as the copies are concentrated on so few players, nobody can do anything about it.

Finally, as Ransium stated, the system is simply not an effective deterrent against large transfer. I'll add my own testimonial of transferring 875 bank in one go, with a single card, fully aware of this exploit. I also routinely (about twice per month) transfer around 2000 bank split over many cards, losing no more than 10 bank in the process. In unsuccessfully trying to fix transfers, the system has created an awful exploit that is leading to enormous gains by select few players.

I think the best solution is to introduce (or reinstate? unclear) a system where a card that is at auction simply has increased odds of being pulled for the duration of the auction. There can be modifiers (if these aren't already in place), e.g., the pulling odds can increase as a function of the number of copies at auction or the price/junk value ratio. But it should definitely not be dependent on new bids, or any other such easily manipulated mechanic. This is similar to what Ransium and Noah are also suggesting above. It is also how most players assumed the anti-laundering system worked, at least up until the beginning of season 2.

I think it's a great mechanic that the community has found creative uses for and I'd be happy for it, or something resembling it, to stay. As far as I can tell, there's two main reasons people don't like it. The first is that a few people can use it to get very rich very quickly, but the trading card game already has lots of wealth disparity and some people complain but in general we seem fine with it. Anyone who knows how it works can use TCALS just like anyone who can figure out how a transfer works can farm using puppets. This is another case where people have equal opportunity but unequal results. Trying to 'fix' that seems like trying to 'fix' the fact that some people are richer because they've spent more time farming. If people are jealous that others are too rich, then it's the mindset that's the issue.

On the other hand, the fact that this is being brought up by those who have already benefited from TCALS makes me wonder if the real, unspoken concern is that this is "ruining" the value of some of these cards that used to be worth thousands of bank. Higher up someone was complaining about how the market value of the Pergamon card crashed. So really, if this mechanic were removed, it would help the big farmers by assuring that their high-value cards won't drop in value. Prices dropping helps the little guy and also makes the game a lot more interesting since it's a change from the usual status quo which is just endless inflation. Having a market that goes both ways is a lot more exciting, and if it's a result of people creating too many copies of valuable cards, then they're suffering from their own success.

Going back to how I have benefited from TCALS: I did pull an Old Tyrannia card during one of TNL's publicized pull events, which I was able to trade for a Pergamon card (at that time worth about a thousand bank) to finish my collection of cards with gif flags. But that wasn't the only time TCALS helped me with the collection. With the help of Big Shot, another gif collector, we were able to produce more copies of Akavet, a card of which only one copy existed (before that it had been a cte'd 0-owner). That was probably my favorite moment in the trading card game: just me and a friend, independent farmers, producing more copies of a card not for its market value but just because it was a cool card we wanted. The TNL pull events have also always been very fun as well: in a minigame that is mostly mindless farming by yourself for literal hours, the pull events provide an opportunity for the community to come together, be online at the same time, get excited over something, and gossip about who's pulled what. Past changes to card mechanics have pleasantly surprised me, even after I argued against them, and I think the admins have done a great job creating and maintaining a game based on the philosophy that a few simple mechanics can go a long way with a great community, so I trust that whatever response they give will work out. But I'd hate to see TCALS go away entirely.

If the cards game is about collecting cards themselves, and/or creating collections of specific types of cards with badges/flags/regions, then TCALS is a benefit. It allows players to spawn more copies of rare, hard to find cards — more people will be able to complete their collections.

If the cards game is about collecting MV/DV, and we're complaining about the unfairness the current system creates, changing the rules without giving players an equal start will only cement existing inequalities. Keeping TCALS allows everyone to challenge those inequalities in the same way, with the same techniques with which they were created. Potentially, someone can use TCALS to create their own monopoly on a high MV card they've boosted or will boost. Hence, fairness is preserved better than by changing TCALS without giving players an equal start.
Someone without a large farming setup wouldn't be able to get these high MV cards in the first place: the exploit favouring Big Farma is a red herring. A small(er) farmer can abuse the system just as well by creating multiple copies of a card they can afford.

If the cards game is about collecting MV/DV, and we're not complaining about the unfairness... Then what are we complaining about? Highly volatile decks crashing? Others having the same opportunities, playing by the same rules, now that they are publicly known?

The problem I have with Pull Events is the manipulation of the clock to produce more copies. If the mechanism could be adjusted to stop producing cards 60 minutes after he initial bid I would be in favor of such a mechanism.

0.00 Bug Fixed

9003's collection of bugged cards reached over 1000 cards

Ballotonia announced that cards with the '0.00' market value will slowly resolve themselves over time. Basically, the game tries to round the MV to the nearest 0.05 on lower value cards. If the average is 0.02 or 0.01, it rounds down to 0.00. See 9003's collection here: page=deck/nation=9003/collection=24132/value_deck=1.

Testlandia inflation!

A record 7 transactions in quick succession

Testlandia, after very few non-transfer trades this season, has finally experienced a good amount of trading. After Refuge Isle sold 3 of their copies to Noahs Second Country for a quick profit, Mikeswill bought the card for a 500, which was well above MV at the time. However, with Ransium buying the card at 542.22 to complete their collection, it seems like the MV is going to now stay around an impressive 500.

Card Hunger Games 2

The participating members

Harmonic Empire yet another ran a hunger games simulation with many active members of the cards discord, as well as some others. The Bigtopia won this round! See the dispatch here:

NS Trading Card

Hunger Games Report

Massacre in Early Game
by Waiban, Harmonic Empire

Hello everyone and welcome to the Second NS Trading Cards Hunger Games Report! Well, folks, the whole game was a sh-tstorm from the very start. Just within 4 in-game Days, we already had 33 dead people! Sadly, Koem Kab's dark magic couldn’t save him this time from by Scottish Independence’s little explosion, but hey, Smiley Bob saved everyone in the NS Card Hunger Games from Jolt and the NS2 Mods! In any case, congratulations to The Bigtopia for gaining first place! He is followed by Inven and Leto II, in second and third, respectively.

1st Place
The Bigtopia
Reward: S1 Vancouvia

2nd Place
Reward: S2 Nova Hollandia

3rd Place
Leto II Atreides
Reward: S2 Naughty Slave Girls (Randomly picked)


As the tributes stand on their podiums, the horn sounds.

Ballotonia stabs Midlands with a tree branch.

Ignis Cinere runs away from the Cornucopia.

S Diego runs away from the Cornucopia.

Jolt and NS2 staffs finds a bag full of explosives.

Inven, The Stalker, and Pangurstan work together to get as many supplies as possible.

9003 runs away from the Cornucopia.

DRUS, The Chuck, Scotland, and Marxist Germany share everything they gathered before running.

Toerana runs away with a lighter and some rope.

N00027 runs away from the Cornucopia.

Koem Kab throws a knife into South Reinkalistan's head.

Dorab runs away from the Cornucopia.

Feu de Glace runs away from the Cornucopia.

Almonaster Nuevo gathers as much food as he can.

Jim the Baptist runs away from the Cornucopia.

Awesomeland runs away from the Cornucopia.

Testlandia stabs Morover with a tree branch.

Xoriet runs away from the Cornucopia.

Noahs Second Country runs away from the Cornucopia.

Leto II Atreides runs away from the Cornucopia.

Racoda throws a knife into -Donna Noble-'s chest.

East Blepia stabs Oofery in the back with a trident.

USNW rips a mace out of Giovanniland's hands.

Narvatus grabs a backpack and retreats.

Apostate rips a mace out of Tyrannyicalist's hands.

The Bigtopia runs away from the Cornucopia.

Mahrenbach runs away from the Cornucopia.

Evrigenis grabs a sword.

Debussy runs away from the Cornucopia.

Zeritae grabs a jar of fishing bait while Sylestone gets fishing gear.

Westinor runs away from the Cornucopia.

Bormiar runs away from the Cornucopia.

Zentata, Mikeswill, and Smiley Bob work together to get as many supplies as possible.

DGES takes a handful of throwing knives.

Apostate hunts for other tributes.

Leto II Atreides, Sylestone, Scotland, and Mikeswill raid Evrigenis's camp while she is hunting.

Marxist Germany receives fresh food from an unknown sponsor.

Noahs Second Country injures herself.

S Diego runs away from The Bigtopia.

Feu de Glace falls into a frozen lake and drowns.

Awesomeland explores the arena.

Zentata receives an explosive from an unknown sponsor.

Pangurstan travels to higher ground.

USNW collects fruit from a tree.

Ballotonia thinks about home.

DGES searches for firewood.

Tyrannyicalist makes a wooden spear.

Zeritae, East Blepia, and Westinor unsuccessfully ambush The Stalker, Ignis Cinere, and Racoda, who kill them instead.

Giovanniland begs for Jim the Baptist to kill him. He refuses, keeping Giovanniland alive.

Narvatus goes hunting.

Smiley Bob searches for a water source.

N00027 thinks about home.

DRUS hunts for other tributes.

Jolt and NS2 staffs kills 9003 with a sickle.

Inven begs for Testlandia to kill him. She refuses, keeping Inven alive.

Xoriet receives a hatchet from an unknown sponsor.

Almonaster Nuevo makes a wooden spear.

Toerana thinks about home.

Bormiar defeats The Chuck in a fight, but spares his life.

Koem Kab kills Dorab for her supplies.

Mahrenbach begs for Debussy to kill her. She refuses, keeping Mahrenbach alive.

Fallen Tributes 1

Evrigenis and Debussy hold hands.

DRUS goes to sleep.

Zentata attempts to start a fire, but is unsuccessful.

The Bigtopia fends DGES, N00027, and Scotland away from his fire.

Mikeswill thinks about home.

Bormiar is unable to start a fire and sleeps without warmth.

Ignis Cinere's trap kills USNW.

Noahs Second Country bleeds out due to untreated injuries.

Almonaster Nuevo tends to his wounds.

Narvatus tends to his wounds.

Toerana is unable to start a fire and sleeps without warmth.

Giovanniland screams for help.

Awesomeland and Testlandia hold hands.

The Stalker tries to sing himself to sleep.

Leto II Atreides, Pangurstan, and Ballotonia discuss the games and what might happen in the morning.

Tyrannyicalist thinks about winning.

Smiley Bob kills Mahrenbach as she tries to run.

Jim the Baptist, Sylestone, and Inven cheerfully sing songs together.

Racoda lets The Chuck into her shelter.

Koem Kab tends to Jolt and NS2 staffs's wounds.

Marxist Germany sees a fire, but stays hidden.

Apostate, Xoriet, and S Diego cheerfully sing songs together.

The Bigtopia, DGES, Almonaster Nuevo, S Diego, and Inven hunt for other tributes.

Mikeswill overhears Jim the Baptist and N00027 talking in the distance.

Ballotonia makes a wooden spear.

Racoda practices her archery.

Debussy searches for firewood.

The Stalker overhears Tyrannyicalist and Testlandia talking in the distance.

Scotland sets an explosive off, killing The Chuck, Ignis Cinere, Evrigenis and Koem Kab.

Apostate scares Smiley Bob off.

Xoriet dies from hypothermia.

Leto II Atreides receives an explosive from an unknown sponsor.

Marxist Germany travels to higher ground.

Narvatus discovers a river.

Sylestone, Toerana, and Giovanniland hunt for other tributes.

DRUS steals from Awesomeland while he isn't looking.

Zentata constructs a shack.

Jolt and NS2 staffs camouflauges himself in the bushes.

Pangurstan sets Bormiar on fire with a molotov.

Fallen Tributes 2


Pangurstan receives a hatchet from an unknown sponsor.

Awesomeland cooks his food before putting his fire out.

Jolt and NS2 staffs lets Sylestone into his shelter.

N00027 sets Testlandia on fire with a molotov.

Toerana questions his sanity.

DGES, Jim the Baptist, Marxist Germany, and Racoda tell each other ghost stories to lighten the mood.

Zentata is unable to start a fire and sleeps without warmth.

Giovanniland looks at the night sky.

DRUS receives an explosive from an unknown sponsor.

Almonaster Nuevo and Ballotonia sleep in shifts.

The Bigtopia receives clean water from an unknown sponsor.

Scotland, S Diego, Mikeswill, Smiley Bob, and Inven track down and kill Tyrannyicalist.

Leto II Atreides quietly hums.

Narvatus, Debussy, and The Stalker sleep in shifts.

Apostate sets up camp for the night.

DRUS defeats Jolt and NS2 staffs in a fight, but spares his life.

Smiley Bob, DGES, Jim the Baptist, and The Bigtopia raid Ballotonia's camp while he is hunting.

Awesomeland silently snaps Toerana's neck.

Racoda tracks down and kills Giovanniland.

Sylestone travels to higher ground.

Almonaster Nuevo stalks Leto II Atreides.

N00027 practices her archery.

Debussy catches Mikeswill off guard and kills her.

The Stalker overhears Zentata and Pangurstan talking in the distance.

S Diego defeats Narvatus in a fight, but spares his life.

Marxist Germany and Inven hunt for other tributes.

Apostate goes hunting.

Scotland dies from hypothermia.

Fallen Tributes 3

Awesomeland's trap kills Pangurstan.

S Diego convinces Apostate to snuggle with him.

Sylestone, Racoda, and Jim the Baptist successfully ambush and kill Almonaster Nuevo, The Stalker, and Narvatus.

DRUS looks at the night sky.

Debussy receives an explosive from an unknown sponsor.

Inven is unable to start a fire and sleeps without warmth.

DGES stays awake all night.

Zentata receives a hatchet from an unknown sponsor.

N00027 and The Bigtopia huddle for warmth.

Leto II Atreides tends to her wounds.

Marxist Germany quietly hums.

Smiley Bob decapitates Jolt and NS2 staffs with a sword.

Ballotonia questions his sanity.

DRUS runs away from S Diego.

Jim the Baptist and N00027 fight Inven and Leto II Atreides. Inven and Leto II Atreides survive.

Smiley Bob, The Bigtopia, Ballotonia, and Racoda hunt for other tributes.

Sylestone overhears Apostate and DGES talking in the distance.

Awesomeland receives a hatchet from an unknown sponsor.

Marxist Germany sprains his ankle while running away from Zentata.

Debussy is pricked by thorns while picking berries.

Fallen Tributes 4


Leto II Atreides receives clean water from an unknown sponsor.

DRUS, Smiley Bob, and Debussy discuss the games and what might happen in the morning.

DGES is unable to convince S Diego to not kill her.

Racoda, Ballotonia, and Zentata sleep in shifts.

Awesomeland tries to treat his infection.

Sylestone sets up camp for the night.

Apostate decapitates Marxist Germany with a sword.

The Bigtopia begs for Inven to kill him. He refuses, keeping The Bigtopia alive.

The cornucopia is replenished with food, supplies, weapons, and memoirs from the tributes' families.

Debussy decides not to go to The Feast.

Racoda and Apostate decide to work together to get more supplies.

Leto II Atreides strangles Sylestone with a rope.

S Diego severely injures Awesomeland and leaves him to die.

Smiley Bob bleeds out due to untreated injuries.

Zentata is unable to convince The Bigtopia to not kill him.

DRUS decides not to go to The Feast.

Ballotonia decides not to go to The Feast.

Inven gathers as much food into a bag as he can before fleeing.

Inven and Debussy hunt for other tributes.

S Diego, Leto II Atreides, DRUS, and Apostate hunt for other tributes.

The Bigtopia and Ballotonia work together for the day.

Racoda dies from hypothermia.

Fallen Tributes 5

The Bigtopia loses sight of where he is.

Inven fends Debussy, DRUS, and Leto II Atreides away from his fire.

Ballotonia sets an explosive off, killing Apostate, and S Diego.

Leto II Atreides receives an explosive from an unknown sponsor.

DRUS receives clean water from an unknown sponsor.

Inven receives an explosive from an unknown sponsor.

Debussy travels to higher ground.

Ballotonia and The Bigtopia hunt for other tributes.

Fallen Tributes 6


Inven receives a hatchet from an unknown sponsor.

Debussy loses sight of where she is.

Leto II Atreides looks at the night sky.

The Bigtopia convinces DRUS to not kill him, only to kill him instead.

Ballotonia dies trying to escape the arena.

Leto II Atreides makes a wooden spear.

Inven fishes.

The Bigtopia discovers a cave.

Debussy bleeds out due to untreated injuries.

Fallen Tributes 7

The Bigtopia receives fresh food from an unknown sponsor.

Leto II Atreides sees a fire, but stays hidden.

Inven is unable to start a fire and sleeps without warmth.

Leto II Atreides collects fruit from a tree.

Inven is pricked by thorns while picking berries.

The Bigtopia receives a hatchet from an unknown sponsor.

Fallen Tributes 8
No cannon shots can be heard in the distance.
No need for screenshot.

Leto II Atreides begs for Inven to kill her. He refuses, keeping Leto II Atreides alive.

The Bigtopia goes to sleep.

The Bigtopia kills Leto II Atreides with a sickle.

Inven attempts to climb a tree, but falls to his death.

Fallen Tributes 9
2 cannon shots can be heard in the distance.

Leto II Atreides
District 12

District 10

Discord Link: LinkNS Trading Card
[Published 15/05/20]
Read dispatch

Card Olympics Leaderboard
Presented by Racoda, sorted by Noahs Second Country

For more information, and a chance to win some great prizes, see this thread: viewtopic.php?f=42&t=484516.
9003 runs a new set of games every month, so keep an eye on the forums and discord if you feel like it's too late to join now! The market watching of Evrigenis seems like it is paying off, as they are getting away with flipping cards from .02 to 1.7!

Collection Spotlight
See Giovanniland's forum thread

A few notable collections were have come to attention over the past week. Check them out!

Staff + Retired Mod Badge Holders - Season 2: This is an impressive (and expensive!) collection put together by Ransium. It is the first of its kind and Ransium has invested a commendable amount of time into putting it together!

Chuck's Gun Cabinet: With the inevitable rarity-based card clash coming, The Chuck is armed and ready! While still a small collection, we hope to see it quickly grow in the future.

Season 2 Epics [1323/1681] (78.70%) by Mediobogdum II: This is currently the largest collection of unique season 2 epics! Mediobogdum is making good, consistent progress!

Also, congratulations to Koem Kab and Noahs Second Country for finalizing their season 2 legendary sets.

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