What was supposed to be a math exercise turned into a discussion of free speech, trolling, monarchy, tyranny and whatnot. So familiar. In the last approximately 143 threads devoted to discussion of loot mechanics I've seen perhaps two mentions of binomial distribution and none of Markov chains, forget about more complex concepts. To bring it back to the topic, here's a little exercise in modeling variance: * open Excel, OpenOffice.org Calc or whatever your favorite spreadsheet software is * in A1, type 144.10 * in A2, type =A1*RANDBETWEEN(50;130)/100 (in reality, it's not a uniform distribution between 50% and 130% (with average being 90%), but still this is one step closer to real thing than set 90% return) * pull down for another thirty rows or so * chart the resulting numbers * recalculate a couple of times Some times you'll get something like this: and sometimes the graph will take a nosedive immediately. But always it will head down sooner or later. Often you'll "see" "good streaks" and "bad streaks" even in this.