I was ranting about this in world chat and thought it would be a pretty good combination of things. Pardon me if this has all already been suggested before.
As I see it, the main use for gems is to buy the gear you want in Trade house. Not many people would realistically spend gems boosting an exceptional craft or cauldron outside of possibly to speed up crafting endgame gear. Further, drop rate of chests makes it very difficult for new people to catch up. At best you're looking at a small group of people buying gems to 1 - open chests and 2 - buy end game gear. There is some need to buy premium slots but that dies out fairly quickly. From there, what motivation do folks have to keep buying gems?
I want to suggest the following:
1. Sell and reward more Blueprint Fragments as a middle-level "premium currency"
* This has three benefits. BPF is untradeable and thus the value of BPF is static and easy to control by CC. It also takes out the RNG aspect of using gems and keys for chests. It reduces influx of gems that aren't from revenue.
- Boost the use of blueprint fragments as rewards - remove some artifact rewards from raids and use 2-3 BPF instead.
- Remove artifact rewards from chests and instead provide blueprints as the lowest reward, instead.
- Allow blueprint fragments to be used towards mastering crafts
- Sell blueprint fragments for $$ in the shop.
- Increase BPF cost from magic chest items going forward, to compensate for increased BPFs coming in
- Depending on your plans for gem lady in this patch, keep her!
2. Decrease the gem costs to encourage Gem use and purchase of gems from shop.
* Purpose: More usage of gems means that fewer will sit idle on a small number of players as it trickles upward. Also, due to the tradehouse limits and as more and more gold enters the game, gems already increase in value from a trade perspective. Hoewver, this has the negative impact of fewer and fewer gems being used in Trade, overall as buying precrafts becomes less and less attractive. This means gems are not being taxed enough or leaving the game as fast as they could. To counter this - make other usage of gems more attractive.
- Decrease cost of gems to speed up Cauldron, limiting to 50 gems/day and 250 gems overall
- right now i'm seeing 250+ gems for a 2 day craft. Imagine those 16 day crafts @ level 55...i'm sure people would be happy to spend 250 gems time and time again to crank those out.
- Decrease cost of gems to boost exceptional crafts up to Flawless -> epic by 90%
- Decreasing cost of gems to repair up to and including Legendary items by a large number as well. Perhaps not 90% to continue to encourage use of crafting Support / Resourceful items.
- In the same vein, decreasing cost of gems to heal and revive
- Decreasing the cost of gems to boost buildings to 1 per boost, but make those gem donations not count towards player networth.
- I have no idea what the exchange rate is, but 5.63k gems vs 200mil to boost level 50 castle 4x means nobody will ever use gems to boost castle. If this was 4 gems, i'd be burning gems all day.
- Drop gem cost to speed up crafts by about 75%. It is almost reasonable now at 50/hr but not quite usable on a massive scale.
3. With regards to #2 above, I'd like to suggest having an event that implements those changes as a trial
4. Optionally, make some of the above changes require user having a premium slot for the craft, cauldron, quest, etc. This encourages purchase of premium slots for gems.