WoW had a stealth fix applied that impacts people who play the Auction House, effectively throttling the number of transactions after a certain limit is reached. High level
With this hotfix, we’ve implemented a new system that effectively gives each player a “budget” of AH actions per minute, and only kicks in once that budget has been exceeded. The system is tuned so that is should never affect players using the AH typically: buying consumables, listing gathered or crafted goods for sale, searching for specific items you want to purchase, etc. It should be essentially impossible to encounter the new limits for most players.
The first question I have is why? I can only assume this is a throughput/TX issue where the servers were taking a major load and impacting other parts of the game. It’s entirely possible that a very small fraction of players are causing a majority of the game load. This is sort of like how time dilation works in EvE, where there isn’t a hard cap, simply a soft one that allows things to move at a snail’s pace. Degraded service, rather than failed service.
Balance-wise, I am more curious as to where this threshold exists. Long gone are the days where people posted single items rather than stacks, clogging up the AH space. It was why I stopped playin a Hunter – getting ammo was stupid complicated. Getting rid of thousands of individual posting isn’t a problem that needs solving anymore.
A long time ago I used to play the AH, maybe 30 minutes a day or so. Made enough money to get a dozen+ WoW tokens. I can’t see how anyone would have the Brontosaurus mount who wasn’t using something like TSM to make money. It’s entirely the purpose of that mount after all. Entirely normal to run a few hundred changes in a few minutes – cancelling auctions and reposting at a different price. Filling up in materials.
The sidenote here would be snipe scans. That takes a look across the entire AH for things that are well below market value. It’s nearly impossible to find these manually. Someone continually polling the entire AH would be a massive drain on server.
Should be interesting to see how this plays out in the long term market value. It’s certainly a number Blizz can change over time, and I’m sure they are seeing server TX volumes take a massive nosedive. Even more curious if this is account-wide, or character specific. If there’s a hard drop (e.g. cap goes away after an hour) or if it’s a variable rate limit.
There’s a real world analogy here, where the majority of stock market transactions are high volume automated systems, making pennies a trade, but having millions of transactions a day. It would be something to see what TX throttling would have as an impact to the market volatility. Course that won’t ever happen, for reasons that are clearly obvious that the people making the most money in this behavior are also the ones who make the rules…