Whether you're a newcomer wondering where to start or an old hand checking up on exactly how something works, we've put together this explanation which should hopefully answer all your questions about fruitmarket.
The idea behind fruitmarket is really two ideas in unison. The first is that of a simple fruit machine; you pay for each spin, and get the chance to win money back in return. Simple, easy, and fun. For a lot of games, that would be enough, and if you want, you can just ignore the rest. The other half, of course, is the market. With everyone playing on the fruit machine, it's a simple step to keep track of everyone's performance and put it in a table. That table is the basis of the market, with each player having a limited number of shares up for sale. It works a bit like a real stock market, and it's just another way to gamble.
The fruitmachine is just three reels. Pay your money, take your spin, and the reels land on three random fruits. You also get a random number of nudges, which you can use to nudge each reel on independently of the others. Get a winning combination, and get a prize. Easy. The winning combinations in descending prize order are: 3 jackpots; 3 identical fruit; all 3 fruit of a particular type of fruit; or 2 identical fruit. The different types of fruit are: lemon, orange, lime; blackcurrant, redcurrant, blueberry; cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon; peach, plum, cherry; red apple, green apple, pear; raspberry, strawberry, blackberry. The actual size of the prize scales with how much you bet on the winning spin, as well as how many of your shares have been sold.
Though it might sound confusing at first, the market is really not much more complicated than the fruit machine. If it were, we would never have been able to make it. A big difference between this market and a real stock market is that there is one central figure - the casino. The casino is always willing to buy, and always willing to sell. When a player starts, the casino owns all shares in that player. Other players are able to purchase those shares, and subsequently get a cut of what the player wins on the fruitmachine proportional to how many shares they own.
That's pretty much the basics of the market. The only other aspect you should understand is that each player has a share price. This is the value of a single share in the player and is determined by how much money they have, as well as recent demand for stock in this player. That means that if the shares start to be bought up, the share price will sky rocket. Similarly, if they're quickly sold, the share price could quickly bottom out. To profit, you need to stay ahead of the game.
With the basics covered, a sordid few of you may now be wanting to know some of the details with a little more nit and/or grit about them, and far be it from us to stop you getting what you want. The easiest way to cover everything is to describe 'A Day In The Life Of A Fruitmarketeer'.
As the story begins, our humble player can be imagined holding down some dreary but reliable office job somewhere, carefully saving their money to join up. Once they do, the casino floats them on the market, for a fee of 400 - that's the currency use in fruitmarket, 'pips' - and ownership of all 100 of the player's shares. The casino credits the final 500 of the player's savings into their account.
At this point, our player will have a share price of 3.8 per share. One influence on share price is a player's balance; they are linearly dependent. The other factor is a player's demand/supply ratio.
Our player might well then proceed to the fruitmachine, where they can wager any amount they can afford on the next spin. If they win the jackpot, the net prize is 750 times the bet amount; three identical fruit yields 75x; three fruit of a group 10x; and two identical fruit 1x. If, however, our player has been invested in, the winnings will be split between player and investor(s). A maximum 10% of the funds can be awarded to the investors; each investor gets (# shares owned)/100 % of this 10% and the rest goes to the player.
After a time, our play may strike it rich, and decide to start to invest in other promising players. Once they do this, the casino will be payed for the shares, and 10% of that payment will be donated to the investee. The investment will now show in our player's portfolio for their review. Here, amongst other things, will be displayed the investee's current share price, the unit cost, and the investment balance. The share price is just that - the value of a single share in the investee. The unit cost is the average price payed for each share our player has bought in the investee, bearing in mind that more than one lot of shares may have been bought in the investee. The investment balance displays how much money the player has made from this investment, taking initial outlay, cuts of the investee's winnings, and selling shares.
The player, having now explored the functions of fruitmarket, might be in a bit of a financial bind - with no money and no assets, a player's future may seem bleak, but for their dull office job, which provides them with enough money to credit an extra 3 to the market every day. This influx of money, combined with the floating fees and a modest amount of daily interest (thanks to sound investments in dull office job type businesses) keep's the casino's head above water, despite the losses elsewhere.
And with that, the day in their life is over, and many details have been covered. There are more, of course, but those who want to know so much will likely find these things out for themselves.