I’ve been playing World of Warcraft for over 5 years now, and I’ve seen a lot of changes. Bear with me whilst I tell you a short story:
When I started raiding, it was at the time of Molten Core/ Zul Gurub, and if anyone remembers Molten Core, it was sometimes known as Molten Bore. zzzz. At any one point in the raid, there would be maybe 5 people afk and on autofollow, out of 40. Back in those days, the number of guides for anything was minimal. We had CT Raid Assist addon, and that was pretty much it. As time has progressed, we got more guides. Videos came out of boss fights, the gold guides were released, and tweaked and advertised and copied and spread and so on.
In World of Warcraft virtual economy where we used to have only auctioneer, we now have more addons than we know what to do with. Quick Auctions came and went, Auctionator managed to stick around, Trade Skill Master is now the premium, useful but complicated addon that everyone wants to use. I also see a lot of searches for Ore Crusher.
Here’s the problem I’m seeing:
We’re at the point where blogs like The Gold Queen are all free. Where MMO Champion runs guides on gold making on its front page. Who remembers the guide they ran on the front page and the difficulties it brought to the top gold makers of the realm when suddenly another large number of casual players read the guide and wanted a piece of the action? Prices fell through the floor, and everyone had to adapt. I’m also thinking of a comment I received in response to the blog post I wrote in advance about Children’s Week.
“Prices soar once the bloggers give people a heads up.”
The WoW market has matured, come of age. Everyone seems to know what they’re doing. You might think you’re just a casual or newbie Auction House player, but if you know how to use the basic mechanics of auctioneer, then you’re already one step ahead of the way gold was made in the Auction House 5 years ago.
We saw this situation when Cataclysm was released. Players knew the expansion was coming, and prepared for it, buying up items in preparation for the prices soaring. The items that were about to become useless got sold slowly but surely, or held on to in banks until the prices came back up. So instead of sharp rises and falls, the movements were more stable in price than was predicted. I know one guru who predicted huge dumps of cheap enchanting mats, for example, but the dumps I saw were small, and moderately priced. It wasn’t the shocking rises and falls in prices that I saw when The Burning Crusade and then Wrath of the Lich King were released.
WoW has grown up, and the players’ understanding of the virtual economy has grown up too.
If you’re trying to make some gold from Children’s Week, its no longer as easy as buying mageroyal the week before and baking a few cakes for the achievement hunters. You’re going to have to think smart to stay ahead of the crowd. Either follow my heads up and get your mageroyal really super early or you’re going to have to work on your ‘packaging’, bundling all the items together for buyers to pick up from you in one package.
With the Undermine Journal spewing out every statistic you could possibly want on the auctions, information is no longer a scarce commodity, either.
So then, this is our challenge: How are we going to cope with a maturing market where information is abundant?
The Gold Queen is written by Alyzande. With many level 100s, 9 years expertise in making gold, 10 garrisons, 16k achievements, 1505 days played, and over 18m gold earned. The Gold Queen blog teaches you how to make gold playing World of Warcraft using ethical trading, auction house flipping, crafting, reselling snatch lists, and farming gold making.