One of the major things that makes GW 2 interesting to anybody that loves to play MMO's is that there is no tank/healer/dps roles in the game. At least not in the traditional sense. You will have control, damage, and support. This leads to a very "controlled chaos" feel that was great in the first. This also means that there's many more options for different types of gear to get and enhancements for them. And naturally, since I'm writing about it now, affords us more opportunities for making the moneys.
If you want to for example be a tank you'll change a few pieces of gear, weapons, and maybe skills, and that gives you more abilities to control the enemy. Things like snares, damage reduction, etc. This also means that different set bonuses will be good, different weapon upgrades will be wanted as well. So from that we can assume that almost everything will have a value. And not just a value, but a consistent rate of sales. Granted tanks are always hard to find, but with the ease of transition would make it more likely to find people that will help with the control aspect.
Think of this as a sort of triple spec for everybody. And we all know how much money that brought in for the responsible goblin. So that in mind, it seems that trying to diversify your markets early will be a good move since there will be so many niche markets. And with so many, it will be difficult to conqueror them all, especially all at once.
This also means that in addition to doing dungeons for challenge and fun, people will be wanting to get more gear sets for their different "specs" which will then reduce the price on a number of dungeon drops. So that's worth keeping in mind.
With so much to sell it'll be hard to keep track of what has value and who it sells to and so forth. Basically this once again goes back to doing your homework and trying to find your own way to keep track of everything that you have and how to go about selling it all off. For me I write this blog to organize my thoughts and kept an excel spreadsheet for the more complicated things like enchanting and ToC epics. It will be especially difficult at the beginning as there probably won't be an all encompassing database like wowhead to easily find out what comes from what and from where.
So we just found out how the dungeon loot reward system is going to work. When you complete a dungeon it will reward you with a token similar to the class tokens in war craft. However there is no danger of getting 500 of the class that isn't in the group and you being SoL as they will always drop for the classes that are present. This means several things. If you can clear X dungeons to get a token for each slot, you can get geared up very fast thus negating (mostly) the need of crafted gear. However this does not mean that there will not be a market for it.
Different level ranges will have different balancing for all of the dungeons, which you will have access to a new one every 10th level with many more at 80. So there's the 10 level range that you'll have to go through before you can get new dungeon gear which means the market will still be present. And it also depends on just how practical it is to do dungeons. In war craft, almost nobody does instances while leveling. But when the game is new, people will flock to them and quickly figure out which are worth doing, if any. Once again, this specific market won't truly come into fruition until people get closer to the level cap and start to raise a family of alts.
Now let me make another wow analogy that should make you think to your yourself "Wooooo! Shiney!!!!"
Remember when each patch changed the emblems so that you could get previous tier level gear? And how each time this happened the demand for gear enhancements like gems and enchants sky rocketed for a week? Remember how you couldn't possible stokpile enough raw epic gems to sell for 200g a piece? Well with so many class specific tokens being given to you for each dungeon means that there's going to be a near constant gear supply with each passing 10 levels and for every single alt that gets made for some time.
Since the game is new many of the dungeons won't lose their appeal for some time, even the more annoying ones which are always present. That being said, I'm going to go out on a limb and say that gear enhancements are going to be the go to money maker for the first few months of the game and possibly even longer. It all depends on how many there are and how many you can make that are cost effective.
As usual, the best money makers are the ones that are in demand the most. And with a new set of gear just waiting for you every 10 levels all the way up to 80 (where you'll be getting even more gear) and the fact that certain items add set bonuses for each one you have equipped... damn! That means that each time you replace your gear you need another set of X items to get the set bonus back. Perhaps there will even be different Crests that give different set bonuses? That would mean even MOAR! It's very much like a different enchanting profession for each type of armor. And you all know the amazing profits I made with my enchanting racket...
While playing the AH is great fun, somethings that are in demand sell very slowly there. Generally these are very specific niche markets such as consumables or special resistance gear that are needed for a particular dungeon. In these markets it may not be worth it to pay the AH fees to try and sell them or the effort of constantly relisting them. When you come across a situation such as this, it could help to go to a specific area to sell them. In warcraft it would be trade chat or going to a specific area where people gather that need it.
Is there a daily quest that needs you to find 8 of a certain world drop? Go to the zone with the quest NPC and sell them there. You'll usually get a very increased rate of sales that way than if you just put them on the AH. This is another tactic that is worth mentioning for guild wars. In an upcoming patch, they will be adding a sort of "staging area" for the original and are intending to do the same thing with the sequel. It's basically an outpost where people can gather for LFG instead of a chat channel that nobody is going to use.
So if there's a fire dungeon and having some resistance gear makes it a heck of a lot more practical to do, you can go to this staging area and sell your wares there instead of listing it on the AH hoping that somebody knows that it's there. This falls under the category of education that I mentioned a while ago. If you need res gear for a certain instance, you don't have to be a moron to not have it. You could be a good player that just didn't know that it was added in, that it's actually worthwhile, or that it even exists. So by simply saying that you're selling it, more people will take notice.
So they look into it and think to themselves "ya know I do have troubles with that place and this is probably why." Then they buy it and try it, they get done a lot faster and with less dying and burn marks and voila! They say to other friends that it works and they buy some more of your res gear.
So should they add in a staging area type of zone in GW 2 this would be highly recommended as there's always way to tweak out your gear and weapons to get better. In addition to that, going to mid range starter zones and selling gear that's great for that level is another alternative. And with the ease of map travel, you can easily go to several different zones to make a post or two in local chat and move on to another area as a sort of traveling salesmen. The AH isn't just a glorified vending machine for goblins, the money comes from other players and upon occasion going straight to the player and cutting out the middle man can work out quite well.
Especially if you sell in a town without an AH something that has a good demand but is severely undercut on the AH. This way you can still make some good profits and stealing a number of sales from your competition. Another example of doing this is selling flasks in WoW around raid time in trade chat instead of on the AH. You know that people are buying them around this time and are very likely to see you selling a bunch for a good price and decide to stock up. And since they don't have to go looking for them and they don't need to buy a bunch of them individually, they'll buy from you out of sheer convenience. Small tip, but still very worthwhile to be aware of. Even if you don't try this your competitors just might.
My biggest worry with working the guild wars 2 AH is the lack of addons. There were none in the first nor were any macros and there hasn't been any word about adding them into the second. Considering what a huge thing this would be and the lack of announcements for it makes me believe there will not be any. The question here is one of efficiency. How fast will we be able to post how many auctions? Considering the fact that it won't be automated, it will have to be fairly easy to post a decent number without it turning into a different form of a grind.
As we all know, efficiency is key to a successful business and automation is your friend. But when automation fails, finding smarter and faster ways to do things becomes the order of the day. Time is money, friend. We once again have an important question that decides the fate of this AH baron. There will always be simply and small things that increase the rate of posted auctions by a lot, but when you have a thousand to list, not much is going to help that isn't plain automated.
But with every game there's always going to be a small amount of built in time saving. Something like hitting a "repair all" button to fix your gear instead of selecting each piece one at a time and repairing them individually. Or the new AH functions built into WoW. Things like right click to add it into the window, simple ways of pricing and splitting etc etc.
However if we assume that it isn't practical to list a ton of auctions by hand and that there isn't and noticeable form of automation present we'll have to drastically change our approach. Instead of trying to conquer every market you rest your eyes on, you'll gave to work smarter instead of spending all day just plain working. Instead of owning the entire gem market, you'll have to carve out your own niche markets.
For example, when I lessened my AH exploits after hitting a million gold, I focused on the easier niche markets that I liked. Things like spell threads and epic ToC gear. Good returns, good rate of sales, and can easily be done completely by hand. After all, it's not that difficult to list 20 auctions in around 2 minutes.
So should there be a lack of automation built into the game niche markets will be the go to tactic of an AH player in guild wars 2. But if there is an automation mechanism of some form it will be quite easy to do what we all strive to do: treat the entire auction house as our personal goblin bank.
In a recent interview, it was stated that the goal for black smithing, tailoring, and other gear crafting professions is that every item will have a use for somebody. In addition to that, all crafted gear will not be inferior to all gear that drops from dungeons and assorted bosses. This is quite different than in WoW where 90% of everything you craft is just fodder for skill ups then garbage. It's also different because once you have a piece of gear crafted, it's almost guaranteed to be replaced after your first useful drop in a proper dungeon run.
The idea is that the stats and look will be different, as in better for somethings and not so much for others. However they haven't said much in the way of what you'll be able to craft besides gear if anything else (only the Crests for tailoring have been announced). Think tank gear from wow where for certain encounters you'll want a specific stat or different effects from trinkets. Personally, I carried around two full bags of assorted gear so I don't limit my potential.
And now to turn this one tidbit of info into a potential cash cow.
Assuming that there will be a use for most crafted gear, this opens up a ton of niche markets. Now I'm no dreamer and I don't expect -everything- to be worthwhile to a number of people, I do expect there to be a use for a good amount of crafted gear. This means that you can cater to specific level ranges as your sole means of income. Buy the materials, hit craft all, and post them on the AH. Business as usual.
But there's one other thing that may effect this in a large way as far as profit and markets go. The side kick system. In a nutshell, a "side kick" is another player that is a much higher OR lower level than you. It's used to experience the whole game on any toon regardless of level.
Granted if you get boosted you're not going to be nearly as good as a max level toon, but you won't be a waste of space either. It also means that if you love your main you can go back and enjoy all of the starter areas on them as well. With low level crafted gear, you can sell this to people that level themselves down to check out the opening areas of all the other races in the game. That's another large market. Then there's the obvious max level stuff and other assorted leveling gear.
Naturally I'm not expecting there to be a large market for this at the beginning. People will be spending more time doing dungeons and experiencing the whole game which will get them decent gear. Also since there won't be much gold in the economy, most people will be farming the materials to have somebody craft something if they can't do it themselves. It won't be until later on when people have more spare change or start making alts that crafted gear will become thoroughly profitable. Sure you can make a bit of extra change here and there, but no serious returns on the investment just yet.
Looking forward to seeing just how "useful" the crafted items are going to be and in what ways they'll be different. If it's nothing more than a different look, it's going to be completely 100% worthless outside of very rare recipes. We shall see.
The other day I received a comment about a very important detail that I have yet to write about just yet. It was something very small stated in an interview with one of the GW 2 developers. Server transfers will be free and only have a short cool down. The cool down most likely be only 3 days or once a week as to coincide with the "World vs. World" pvp matches that will be held. Here's a quote from the wiki:
"Eric Flannum : World vs. World PvP, or WvW as we call it, can be figured as a massive strategy game in which each player is a unit in the conflict. Each week, we'll take 3 worlds (what they call "servers" in other games) and make them fight in WvW. Each world will be in charge of castles, mercenary camps, mines, lumberjack camps and villages in the starting zone. Between those starting points there'll be a neutral zone, controlled by no clan, that will contain fortresses, mines and villages too. WvW is the battle between those 3 worlds for the control of strategic points. Players may decide to fight alone against a supply caravan, join a single group and capture a mine or create a large alliance to assault one of the numerous fortress that could give an advantage in the zone. The battle may continue in any zone, including the starting territory of a world. Hold control points and control territories will grant bonuses to your world. At the end of the week, a world will be called victorious and 3 other worlds will be picked to fight in the next battle."
This one little detail means, quite literally, a world of difference in the auction game. Several worlds as a matter of fact (you see wut i did thar?). There might not be a lot one can say on it, but it's such an important thing that I feel I should discuss it. In warcraft you have numerous different servers to play on, each with their own economy, prices, markets, supplies, and demands. Different people farm different things, craft and sell different items and so forth. A successful market on one server may be very weak on another server. This is just the natural order of things.
This is essentially set in stone as the process to change servers may take anywhere from a day to a week, during which time you cannot access any character on your account. Not to mention it also costs $15 per character and may require a name change if it's in use on the target server. The likelihood of enough people going through this process to disrupt an entire game economy is essentially zero. But in GW 2 the process to change servers will be completely free and, I assume, that all names are reserved once you create them on any given server. The big question here is...
...will the auction houses be linked?
If so, that means a shortage of any material may be unheard of. All prices will eventually balance out to their own respective "values" with price spikes only coming and going as they naturally do. The only concern here is the amount of farmers which, I can assure you, will be many.
However! If they are not linked, that means the potential to find super cheap deals on raw materials and other items is almost limitless. Lets say that Level 1 crests are worth 300 gold on your server. However on MY server they may be worth 3,000 gold. Then it's as simple as spend all your cash on the cheap crests, transfer to my server and undercut me by 50% and make a mega profit. But that's just plain items.
If you check and find a certain server where, say, ore is usually cheap you can buy those, craft a bunch of items, sell the items for a primo undercut and the remaining ores to take hold of yet another market. Remember my constant yammering on about get into as many markets as possible? Never forget that you can sell the raw materials as well! This means that if there's a demand for something, it will ALWAYS have somewhere to be strong. Though depending on the transfer cool down and linked AH this might not be a practical idea.
The cool down between servers will mostly effect the amount of gold or items to sell that you should take with you to another server and how often you may find it feasible to do so. And one final bit of info that is unknown that will make a huge effect on this. Will you be able to transfer single characters like in warcraft or will it be an "entire account or nothing" transfer? Again, this is just a small detail but has a huge effect on the game.
Just like the addition of a jump button. Fuckin' cool!
Real quick, I stumbled on a great wow gold tip the other day that I feel obligated to share with you. Especially since I never mentioned it before, heh. Here it is, Courtesy of Cold's Gold Factory.
Since GW 2 is still in development, there are several big questions that need answers before much can be done in the planing of an empire. Of course not many of these things generally come to light in their completion until release or a moment before. So that leaves plenty of time to wonder and guess how one can go about amassing a digital fortune. So here are a few of the questions that I'm most concerned about in the mean time that I feel are the most important things an AH player should know when starting up. As always, it pays to do your homework.
1. What crafting professions will a character have access to? Will the total number be limited?
2. Will we have limited profession slots for gathering as well which restricts what we can gather? Or will it be what we'd expect and you can only gather specific nodes?
3. How easy will it be to learn each recipe for a crafting profession? Will there be rare drops? Will they start already known? Or will they be purchased with gold or other currency?
4. How much use will there be for them at all? Naturally there will be a few item upgrades such as crests, but will that be all? Will they mostly be cosmetic or will there be mid range or "starter" gear that can be made?
5. Pressence of consumables. We know that there will be mana potions, but will that be all? Will each profession be able to craft item upgrades? If so, will there be just the one per profession?
6. How will profession skill ups work? will there be any at all? Naturally there's a million ways that it can wind up, but if it's as simple as craft 50 items to get one skill up is also likely.
Once release day comes, these will be some of the first few questions I'll be looking for answers to. You cannot go far in the AH world unless you are aware of all the tools you and your competition have available. Always do your research into what's available to you and your homework on what's coming soon. It's also important to know so that you can start working on them sooner rather than later. If you start looking for materials that help you with your skill ups at level 1, you'll be much closer to max once you hit the level cap. Naturally once more answers come to light, I'll be writing up my thoughts on them.
The way gathering will work in GW 2 is rather different than that of WoW. The same general professions will be around such as mining and herbalism, but they will work a little different. Gathering nodes will spawn across the world and they will be gathered on a per player basis as opposed to the world. Meaning that once you mine a node empty, another player will be able to come and mine the same one. The main purpose of this is to prevent "node ninjas." When you mine a node, it will be "empty" for you and only you and will not dissapear.
So 5 seconds later another player may come and mine the same node in the same place at the same time and mine it for themselves in addition to you. This small change has numerous ramifications that may have a significant impact on how the economy works.
Here's an example. There's 5 people mining saronite in Sholozar basin or nagrand or -insert popular farming zone here- all at the same time. This would reduce the amount they can farm by a lot due to everybody chasing after the same nodes and hoping to catch the respawns as they fly over them. However in GW 2 they will each be able to mine the same nodes and only have to wait on their personal farming route. This leads to several very important and immediately noticeable effects.
1. A more available supply in raw materials. This is due to the much less limited supply of materials that can be gathered in a set amount of time with a lack of competition for the same nodes.
2. More potential for botting. While arena net is very opposed to botting, they're not perfect. But with nodes having the same locations and not having a random respawn timer, it would be much easier to program a bot to gather much more. In WoW when you mine a node it dissapears from the world for everyone and comes back in a random location, rarely the same as where it was last. This makes it a bit harder for mining bots to find them. But when they are in the same spot with only a random timer, bots will come and provide much more materials for cheap than in wow. That is of course, if they aren't hit with the b& hammer in a few days.
3. "Farmed for free!" With the ease of farming it will lead to a great rise in "I farmed it for free" that is rampant in almost every game with gathering/crafting. Also with a lot of players being new to this system (as it was not present in the first guild wars) may lead many to fall into this mentality due to lack of experience. This could result in a lack of sales (or markets even) as people are unwilling to spend their hard farmed gold on something that can be gotten for free (after several hours of work).
This may take some time, but even in WoW there are still plenty of people that know the difference so this shouldn't be too much of a problem once people find more needs for gold and have less time to farm instead of enjoying a new game.
4. Natural rise of goblins will be slowed. With farming being made so easy, people will be less likely to turn to the AH and learn to be a goblin. With a simple and mindless source of income there will be far less of a desire to find a more effective approach at making gold. Also people don't usually look at making gold as a goal and only amass money when they have a need for it. You can liken this to the daily quests in wow, easy money for little work. Hell even somebody on my server got gold capped by mostly doing dailys. When there are no truly effective means of making gold outside of farming people will look for an alternative, but when you have something as "thought free" as easy farming this necessity will not be sought out by many.
Like all up and coming AH players, your fortune has to start from something and that something is almost always gathering. It was for me of course. So naturally I'll be doing my best to gather what ever it is that I can find while steaming towards the level cap of 80.
With the many huge changes from the original guild wars and the second there's obviously going to be different things that the player base will be getting us to, namely the auction house or market place. In the first, there was only a trading chat channel in the game message system so many may not have experience with it unless they played wow or similar games. This means that many may still stick to trying to sell things by spamming "WTS..." in chat channels making some things hard to buy or sell.
Also, in the first game the only way to make money was to farm for hours or to get very lucky drops in a high end dungeon which also takes a lot of time to complete. So the act of crafting and selling will be entirely new to most and some are even against the whole idea of making money by buying raw materials to craft a piece of armor to sell for a profit. That means that there will be potentially very low competition for quite some time. It also means that there may be very little market as well. But the ease of acquisition and immediate gratification will change that in no time I'm sure.
Another potential factor that could influence the economy greatly is that arena net (the company that runs guild wars) generally keeps a much closer eye on the game economy than others. By this I mean if it suddenly becomes very easy to solo farm the most expensive drops in the game, they'll nerf it. They do this because this is a large amount of the purpose of doing the higher end stuff so being able to solo it easier than going as a group trashed their value to nothing. This has happened many times in the original and I wouldn't be surprised if they keep it up. So because of that it's unlikely that a single thing will be 20 times from profitable than something else. At least not in the long term.
The biggest question of course, is just what will we be able to craft and sell? Will the gear from smithing be any good? will we be making consumables like belt buckles? The only thing we know for sure is that other professions have something akin to the crests from tailoring. The ones from tailoring will only effect light armor for casters and such. But what else will the professions be making?
It is unlikely that there will be addons as there were none in the original and there has been no word relating to any chance of it, so working the AH will require more work the more you wish to sell. This would lead most away from full on enterprises and have many people focus on their one or two niche markets. Where as somebody like me may choose to run several niche markets from every profession to keep my income high.
Lastly there are the bots. In wow they are the source of many cheap raw materials for many servers. However in GW they take a fast approach to baning any account that bots. Not too long ago in fact, they banned almost 4,000 accounts for bots. and you'd see them in certain farming locations all of the time. But since then not any more. I'm positive that this hard stance against botting will remain and this of course will make the goblins rely on the farmers to do their "honest day of work" to do our honest day of "take advantage of the idiots and the lazy" work.
What drives the current GW economy can be summed up in one word: style. The more awesome something looks the more it's worth. The same goes for rarity, if it's hard to get it's expensive whether or not it's any good. So naturally this mentality will continue on into the next game. But at the start you're not that likely to find anything extra rare or that looks specifically amazing. Take that along with the pseudo-heirloom gear you can get from your accomplishments in the previous GW series, there won't be much of a market for any of this at all for some time. So with that there won't be any semblance of the original economy even though most of the player base will be used to it and likely still participating in the original one.
But since there's no money in the economy of any significance why bother thinking about this now?
Simple, there's a need for cash. Always is. Your skill ups won't be free, new leveling gear isn't free. Any upgrades you want for an exceptionally powerful piece for the level range aren't free either. And of course, raw materials for crafting won't be free either. So there's still plenty of opportunities to start your business empire early. You provide for people who have the same needs as you: get to max level in style and power. Granted since I've been looking forward to this game for a while I won't be spending all of my focus on the gold like I was before I stopped playing wow. But I'll always have my eye out.
Starting out in a completely even financial playing field doesn't make things as difficult as you may think. It's the same as starting with zero gold in wow. It all comes from somewhere just like the raw materials. You get drops here and there, some get vendored and others used from crafting. You use a gathering profession while leveling (which should be a no brainer for you all by now) and you begin to collect your seed money. That's my plan at least. Like I stated many time in my "From the ground up" entries, you have to have a good eye for what can be sold and what should be vendored.
So far the announced professions are mining, herbalism, and tailoring. It has also been stated that there will be an in-combat consumable similar to your basic wow mana potion. In GW players have a large 'energy' pool but slow regen to make you manage it. From that, we can safely assume that there will also be black smithing, alchemy of sorts, and a way to gather cloth for tailoring. Although the cloth is likely to be the same as wow and is just a standard world drop. With tailoring you will be able to create things called Crests which, in a nut shell, give the gear you're wearing a set bonus. That's so that if you love the set bonus of rogue T8 but hate the looks compared to t10 there's no problem, you keep the set bonus stats and the looks. Pretty nifty imo.
There will also be something called transmutation stones which allow you to combine the looks of different armor sets to make your own unique look. They will be available in the game store for real $ but will be found in game as well. These things will be near worthless at the beginning due to the rapidly changing gear, just like any gear modification usually is, but will be priceless later on.
That's all for today. Tomorrow I'll be going over a number of things that may or may not have a very profound effect on the economy and making money in general.
Aloha all! Been a while since we last spoke I know. I've mentioned several times in the past that once Guild Wars 2 is released I'll begin blogging about my gold making exploits in that game just as I have in the WoW world of things. Naturally my standard M.O. will not change, but the environment and market will be completely different. The game is roughly slated for release in 2011 with a beta starting soon so there's still some time to wait before the fun begins, but with arena net releasing new tid bits each day it seems there's plenty of room for speculation. Since anybody that's reading this is likely an up and coming wow AH player you may be wondering something...
How does this effect me?
Technically, it doesn't. At least not directly anyway. Like I've always said, it's more important to understand the WHY of making money than the WHAT. Anybody can follow a step by step guide book and do ok, but they'll never do great unless they understand why certain things are necessary. That's part of the reason I started my "From the ground up" project where I took a level 1 toon and leveled and skilled them up to a fortune with zero support or help in any way. Just me and my wits and got up to 50k gold in 8 weeks. While you may not be starting with nothing, you can still learn a lot from the process of building an empire so that's what this series of posts will be about.
Ok so you want to make a lot of gold to do lots of things with. Great! But that gold has to come from somewhere doesn't it? Today you get all of your gold from other players who get it from other players and so forth. But GW2 is a brand new game with just as new players. Not a single one will have loose cash to toss around. No epic lewts to buy upgrades for. Everybody will start at the same spot: broke as shit.
That's where the challange comes in. How does a goblin get people to part with their cash when they barely have enough to train their new skills for the first time? Today you get money from a friend or an alt or your main to bank roll any toon you create. But now with a whole new game and player base there is zero gold to flow around in the economy, so all you can do is lay out the ground work.
That means there is technically no market to make money in because there is no money to be made. Not in the large enterprise sense at least. That's what these few entries will be about. You may or not gain some fine financial insight from it, but it will still be a very interesting situation to think about I promise you that. Tomorrow I'll be going over the basics of what drives the GW economy and how to profit form it along with my personal thoughts on how it will shape up from what we know about it now. But until then...
This blog is about discovering all of the ways to make money in Rift. There are no cheats, hacks, or exploits used in any of my methods.
After amassing a 2 million gold fortune in wow I decided to come over to Rift and see how well I can do there. It is my belief that the game does not matter as much as the methods used and mine have already been proven to work and work well.