The last big element, however, was that there were a fair amount of team members who saw the whole system as a boondoggle, and not worth pursuing. Alas, one of them also ended up in charge of implementing it in beta.
Unfortunately, this sort of thing drives how and why things in MMOs are implemented more than you’d think. Or about the same, if you share my distressing lack of faith in human nature.
Regardless, Raph is far too modest (as usual). Ultima Online still has one of the most advanced economy models for a virtual world, years on. Only Eve currently comes close, mainly because it clearly read the playbook for both UO and its “successor state” SWG. Suffice to say I’m also
stealing like a bandit taking notes.