The Myth of Auctions

I am a stupid min-maxer when it comes to money.  My wife can attest to that, certainly.  This remains true within the MMO space.  In most games, I will select the reward that gives me the most money or best reward for long term use.  WoW even had add-ons to show you which reward was worth the most gold, which is pretty useless in Panda-land, since you only ever get 1 reward.

There’s a joke in my circle of friends that I do everything with spreadsheets.  Chalk that up to my real world job of analytics I guess, but my in-game antics follow the same method.  I have spreadsheets for WoW, RIFT and TOR.  One page has all my base mats, the other pages are the crafted mats I can make and their sale price.  I calculate their cost, minus their sale and get a profit.

In TOR, this number was usually negative, sometimes massively so.  It’s the reason everyone takes Slicing after all.  RIFT is a bit different in that practically anything you can make at max level makes money.  This is mostly due to a smaller subset of players crafting.  WoW is the outlier here and it feels like I’m competing against China.

Multiple reasons here.  First, is that there are really only 4 skills that make anything useful for players – enchanting, inscription, food and alchemy.  Every other crafting skill is basically useless after the first month.  Second, and linked to the first, with only 4 skills to use and players having access to 3 of them at any time, there’s a pile of competition out there.  Finally, within a given skill set, there are maybe a half dozen items worth making, at most a dozen.  Not exactly a lot of choice here!  Plus, we’re in the first month, so people are still levelling rather than buying.

I use mods to do my spreadsheet work and find profits.  I also use them to find items to buy and help post.  I don’t see why anyone would ever do this manually.  Still, the profit levels are horrible.  My jewelcrafter has yet to make a single gem that sells for more than the crafting cost.  Inscription is barely making a cent.  I’ve run both daily (for about 10 minutes total) and make about 300g a day.  My monk however, has made over 7000 gold going from 85 to 87.  Hmmm.

I remember in Lich King where I made an attempt at breaking 100k from the auction house alone.  The Tundra Mammoth at 10K was a lot back then!   Took about a month to train the skills and get the tools, but I did it.  Now I’m kind of wondering where the money is going in the game.  If crafters aren’t making money, then the farmers are.  People as a whole have more money (way more) than every before and there just doesn’t seem to be a place to spend it.   From levelling alone, you should be able to buy all your glyphs, all your flight training, mounts and train up a crafting skill or two to max level – with cash left over.

Guess the time of min-maxing the AH is pretty much over for me.

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