Welcome fellow explorers, to the TML Upland FAN (Financials and News) Blog.
- Martini Shot One
- National Museum Day (Curators vs Burglars)
- FIAT Out Partnership
- Genisis Week (+200k UPX contest!!!)
Martini Shot One
Upland doesn't do updates like most games you've seen. There doesn't seem to be a long lead time on maintenance announcements and the patch notes are often vague and don't give many details. I'm not sure if this is all done intentionally as a part of getting people to explore the game and discover new things themselves or they just haven't matured their app development process. Honestly, I'm happy not being spoon-fed all the patch details because its fun to discover things yourself, but I can definitely understand the frustration. The last major patch was announced in a couple of different mediums but the jist was captured in their tweet;
So let's break it down:
UI/UX overhaul: This is the first thing you notice when logging in (if you're new you may not be familiar with the older interface and icons, but you can go look at old screenshots for reference) It looks gorgeous, the art style and development team clearly have a vision and its bright and fun and inviting. All the original explorers got facelifts and the GUI was updated to help include some of the other features like Leaderboards and Challenges. Collections images were freshened up and the explore's Uplander badge has been simplified, presumably in preparation for future icon decorations that have been teased in Martini screenshots
Leaderboards: This much-anticipated feature for competitive players (like myself) is a great look at some of the data being collected and how we might be able to leverage in the future. on day one we got 6 boards; Visitors, Completed Collections, Uplanders Referred, Treasures Claimed, Total UPX Proceeds, and Trades.
The Visitors board is pretty straight forward, how many people visit your properties every day. I personally like this one because I have over 1,000 properties and I am often first on the list :) Next, the Completed collection board is interesting because on a daily/weekly basis this is where newer players are highlighted since most long term players aren't completing multiple new collections. You can however set the timeframe on the boards and when you move the Collections board to lifetime you can see the 4 current 21/21 Explorers, Kent, Kenny, MrMonopoly, and me ThankMeLater. Uplander's Referred, how many players have used your referral link, good to see who is successfully promoting the game and not just spamming various media as a "promoter"; on a related note if you're new and haven't signed up please support this blog and our community by using the referral link https://r.upland.me/iBEA. Treasures claimed, primarily used to count Treasure hunts but it also appears to track treasures in various events (like the recent Curators vs Burglars). UPX Proceeds seems to track every source of UPX outside of buying it; Sales, Referral Bonuses, Treasures, Prizes, and Interest. It should be noted this isn't necessarily all "profit" if someone sells a property for 100k that they paid 90k for it will show 100k UPX proceeds. This an interesting board to see who's making moves, who's liquidating, and who just came into some money. I do wish I could see a break down of the funds, I think it would give a more complete picture. Finally the Trades board. This essentially tracks the number of properties you have gotten rid of either through trade or sales. It does not count the number of properties you have received or bought from other players. This board is easily manipulated by players trading properties, especially since there is no fee currently to do a property for property transaction. What leadership boards would you like to see in the future? Leave a comment below!
Challenges: This is an amazing new feature and really shows the potential gamification of this platform. These challenges range in duration from a couple of hours to a couple of days and can be as simple as who can get the most visitors to live events like Curators vs Burglars. This feature allows for self-contained competitions and events and has the great benefit of show the history of winners.
Treasure hunting cooldowns: One of the first of many promised Treasure Hunt (TH) 2.0 features. This puts players on a cooldown after winning a TH and prevents them from seeing clues about the upcoming or active THs. Note this doesn't prevent them from winning but would make it a lot more difficult and has since prevented the walls of back to back wins by certain players.
Broken trail fix: If you don't know what this is, you're probably not alone and may not have even known it was a thing, but some players would "pre" jump with their explores sending them to multiple properties prior to the start of a TH and if the treasure appeared in any of the "trails" they created they would win the hunt. This created a lot of frustration since hunts were lasting literally just seconds. So I'm personally glad that's gone.
Unannounced Goodies: It's as vague as it sounds, I don't have any additional comments because I literally don't know what they're talking about.
National Museum Day (Curators vs Burglars)
This was the first Martini live event and it took particular advantage of the new Challenges system. The TLDR of the event was any players who had an active "Curator" collections (ie 3 Museums) would be the Curators (which ender up being Kent, Kenny, Hodler, and me ThankMeLater) there would treasure hidden among all the properties owned by the Curators (~2k properties) Everyone else was burglars, their job was to find and collect the treasure. The team did an amazing job and actually created art for each of the 12 "active" museums for the burglars to find. (you can see them all on Twitter like this one:)
The challenge board tracked how many unique treasures each Burglar found (up to 12) and how many treasures each Curator had left. The burglar who found the most unique would win 100k (would have been split if there were multiple winners) and the Curator with the most treasures left would get 50k. Hilton won for the Burglars finding all 12 and I'm proud to have won for #TeamCurator.
There seemed to be a lot of confusion around how this event would work and I'm not sure why that is. Yes, the instructions were a bit extravagant, but its fun having to figure out some of the nuances as a community. It was great to see various strategies and teams forming throughout the event, my own strategy changed several times and the team working with Hilton clearly had a game plan. We are still waiting on the breakdown from the dev team on the exact robberies and details, so I will hopefully have a more dedicated article in the near future.
Also, it should be noted during this event the number of daily moves you could collect went from 25 to 40 on an indefinite basis.
FIAT Out Partnership
Huge news would be an understatement:
While FIAT out isn't live yet, it is just around the corner. This partnership with LindenLab is a major step forward in legitimizing Upland for a much wider audience. This could also bring some of the massive SecondLife community into the Upland Blockchain world and with that would be a large injection of funds from gamers who understand and appreciate full digital economies. I can't stress how cool and important this milestone is for the game of Upland and the future of gaming.
Genisis Week (+200k UPX contest!!!)
This is essentially Upland's 1 Year anniversary party, celebrating the minting of its first property. Most of you probably started the game (like me) in 2020 with the Open Beta, but before that was a closed beta that a select few participated in. Yes in hindsight it would of been great to be one of the first, but these early believers had practically nothing that most of you will start with and I'm not just talking TH's and Live events, I'm talking there was no Collections or even Explorers in the early days! Be sure to check out the official article for the details, and I'm sure I will be writing about them more as its released.
To celebrate this special occasion, I am hosting my own event and giving away 200,000 UPX. In keeping with the theme, I will be doing a raffle for all the visitors to the first property ever minted! (and no it's not mine) Please show some love for 1829 Jefferson St, owned by LordOfParcels. It's a shame, I'm not sure if this is an active player or anything. This is the only property they own. Either way, visit 1829 Jefferson St between now and Sunday for your chance to win 200k UPX!!!! Here are the "formal" rules, it's only one entry per Uplander, you must visit before 2 PM CST Sunday, May 31st to be eligible, and you must be a verified Uplander on the Upland Fan Discord to claim the prize (Join here: https://discord.gg/4znNMFZ) Good luck!
SF "Starter" properties update
Here is an excerpt from my buyer's guide (found here ThankMeLater’s Buyer’s Guide):
These are properties valued <5,000 UPX and are a great starting place for buying/selling UpLand. Additionally, even veteran/wealthy players can benefit from having a portfolio of reasonably priced properties that can return a decent profit.
What to look for: Ideally you want to buy unminted properties that are <2,500 UPX. The cheaper you can find the better. There used to be a lot of <1,000 UPX properties but most of them have been bought up. Right now the lowest properties up for sale hover around 2,600 UPX (5/24/20), so pricing at 2,600 - 2,699 UPX will put you near the top of the list.
As of 5/24/20 -
Cheapest single property Unminted: ~2,200 UPX
Cheapest single property Resale: ~2,600 UPX
Current Markup %
Buy: < 2,400
I'll be honest, at this point I don't price anything under 5,000 UPX (if you find old properties of mine at under 5k, you should probably buy them, they are the some of the better deals I have and since its insanely time-consuming to look at 1,000+ properties no way I'm able to reprice them easily) These "starter" homes are a good way to steadily increase your UPX without waiting for a trickle of interest. Additionally hunting for a bargain is a great past time and will get you learning the city! One thing to keep in mind is that a new cheap property that is currently owned by a "visitor" could become available at time if their visa expires. It may be worthwhile noting properties you find owned by these visitors.
Honestly, this topic probably requires its own article but I will start with this and see if more is needed.
For those who don't know Inagural's are the first properties ever minted in Upland, they were all bought in 2019 during Closed Beta, they have a red marker (currently the same as the Iconic Icon) and they form a collection and they earn a 2.3x bonus on interest.
Collection Type: Rare
City: San Francisco
Description: Own 4 Inaugural Properties in Upland
Monthly Interest Bonus 2.3x (130%)
One Time Bonus: 11,000 UPX
There are about 600 hundred of these properties, with over half being own by less than 3 players and an unknown amount owned by players who have left the game. There is a finite amount of these properties and there will never be more. Many speculate these will have some of the highest increases in value as the game matures. Here is why I disagree with that.
1) They are already at a significant markup, 100k is the minimum price right now and I don't see it getting much higher than that in the next 6-12 months
2) The supply is too limited by the number of owners and most are holding for much bigger returns
3) The majority of these properties are unremarkable, the ones that are a part of other major collections or of substantial size/initial price will certainly see better returns than most
4) Yes, these are a novelty, I bought them to complete the collection, but the interest gained on these properties is negligible compared to their current mark up
5) The lack of base interest means that multipliers applied by buildings won't be nearly as effective. NOTE: If buildings add a FLAT monthly Interest amount and not a %. IE you build a 100k add-on and you earn a flat 1k a month bonus from it, verses increasing the value of the property by say 10% then the math could work out very different.
6) A rising tide lifts all ships; sure as the overall value of SF increases over time so will the value of Inagural's but in my opinion, they are overvalued for their current and I have personally liquidated my and reinvested elsewhere that I think will yield higher returns over the next 6-12 months.
I don't see inaugural's like this "holy grail", I think that is thinking too small. Yes they amazing properties and for the right collect certainly worth a reasonable premium, but I think there will come a time that ANY property in SF will command a significant premium and I would encourage players to strongly consider purchasing unminted properties as a priority of paying the mark up for these properties.
Cheers and as always,
If you haven't already joined the fun be sure to check out Upland, the virtual property trading game. If you use this link, Upland will award you with a bonus for your first purchase! https://r.upland.me/VX4t
Additional Upland Resources:
ThankMeLater’s Buyer’s Guide (Google Doc)
Upland community database (Built on Airtable, maintained by the community)
Upland Blog (The Upland strategy blog by ThankMeLater
Uplander Blog (The Upland fanfiction following ThankMeLater the Turtle)
Upland Fan Discord Server (Find community chat, TH tips/discussion, and live voice rooms!)
Upland Official Discord Server (This is the place for all official Upland communication and Dev team interactions)