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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Lackadaisical: All Lackeys Welcome

First off, congratulations to Skorpsy on winning my Amensia give-away! I hope you aren't too frightened and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

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I was twiddling my thumbs, rather bored with the game for a while.  Well, not bored with the game, just too dazzled by the Steam Holiday Sale to pay too much attention to WoW.  I have more gold than I could ever really need but wanted to keep trying new ways to make gold, so what was something I'd never tried?

Other people.  /shudder.  I veer drastically from super friendly to complete bitch on a nearly hourly basis so I tend to play solo when it comes to gold-making.  But unfortunately one thing Legacy of the Illuminati is short on is guild drama. I try to pick fights with Eluniar but he won't have any of it. =[

So where am  I to get my fill of WoW soap opera drama?  And try a new tactic to make gold? And meet up with new people for laughs and good times?

<Lackadaisical> of course!  I decided I wanted to try the Great Guild Experiment. Many people have already done this I believe. Start up a random guild, invite anyone with a pulse to grind out levels, sit back and wait for gold to come in.

Now, I'm not technically doing this to make gold. In fact, I've put a bit of gold into it already (bribing lowbies to stay in by offering guild repairs, not that they cost a lot and providing Netherweave Bags in a limited quantity) and don't really see it as a money making powerhouse, more of just a little experiment.

So I named it Lackadaisical.  Apart from being able to call my members my lackeys I felt that the definition fully encompassed how I feel about my guild experiement. 

lack·a·dai·si·cal/ˌlakəˈdāzikəl/

Adjective:
Lacking enthusiasm and determination; carelessly lazy

I made a new alt for it because, while I'm not super secretive about who my main is, I didn't want everyone to whisper me with every little noob question every 30 seconds while I was in raid.  I downloaded Super Guild Invite and away I went!

Once I got Super Guild Invite running (the 4.3 update had temporarily busted it but it's been fixed now) I was getting 10-20 members everytime I logged on and ran it. Granted, around half, sometimes more, would leave the guild within a day but I didn't mind; my focus is not on retention.  While we may lose ten level fives I can log on and recruit fifteen more, so I should come out of it all okay.


One thing I did, though, is set SGI to blacklist after one invite. I don't mind spam guild invites as long as they're not truly spam who keep inviting you over and over again. So that was my small service to the guildless community there.

Currently we're sitting at 120 members and are about 30% of the way to Level 2. It's slow going since most of the guild members are very low level and none are running guild dungeons together, but it's getting there. Considering I'm putting in virtually no work any progress is fine with me.

I figure best case scenario I get a level 25 guild someday that grinds gold for me via guild challenges and Cash Flow, worst case scenario I go ballistic, get rid of everyone (though it's not my plan) and have a guild bank to store stock for Pandaria.

So that's what I've been up to when not buying all sorts of games I never knew I wanted on Steam.  Oh, and since I'm completely addicted to starting new blogs for new projects, check out One BLU Medic if you're interested in TF2 and/or in-game economies. 

Monday, December 26, 2011

Merry Christmas: Update on the Give-Away

I hope everyone had a good Christmas! As scheduled I did the /roll at random for the Amnesia game on Christmas Eve, a winner has been chosen. I'm currently trying to get in contact with that winner, so if you made a throwaway e-mail for the contest be sure to check it! Once I've got the game to the winner I'll announce who won, I just want to make sure it gets to where it needs to be first.

I haven't been playing WoW much, I log on once a day to do auctions but the Holiday Steam Sale has distracted me quite a bit. Orcs Must Die!, Defense Grid: The Awakening, And Yet it Moves,  Limbo, TF2's Australian Christmas, Audiosurf, Borderlands, Plants vs Zombies for Christmas . . . yeah, WoW's not been at the top of my list.

Anyways, I've got some gold making videos in the works, I just wanted to do the quick post to let you know an Amnesia recipient was chosen and that I need to get in contact with that person, so check your e-mails.  Also, to say Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Amnesia Christmas Give-Away

EDIT: Remember to include a way for me to reach you in the comments; those using an OpenID like a Blogger account should be fine, I just want to make sure I can get the prize to the right recipient when the time comes!

This doesn't have much to do with WoW, but I wanted to put it here anyways.

I've been thinking for a while that I would like to do something, maybe have a little contest with a giveaway on the blog.  I think people do it to get readers but I don't really care. I'd rather reward people who have been reading me all along.

Today I saw that Amnesia: The Dark Descent was on sale on Steam so I snagged a copy because it's a game I really wish more people played. It is an amazing, frightening, beautiful survival-horror game.  Here's a little "promo video" I made for the give-away that shows a bit of what the game looks like:




So how do I enter?
Simply leave a comment on this post with a way to get in touch with you should you win. E-mail, IM, Steam ID, whatever. If you're uncomfortable putting that information out just make a throwaway e-mail.

On December 24th I will count how many comments there are and /roll that number in WoW, whoever has that comment number will receive the copy of the game.

This is a Steam gift so you will need to download and install Steam if you don't already have it; don't worry, it's free.

What's to stop someone from making a million throwaway e-mails and entering a lot?
Hopefully a bit of class.  It's a five dollar game, if you want it that bad just go buy it yourself; I'm doing this to try to give back to my readers and I can't afford to do much more than this. I certainly can't stop someone from doing such a thing but I think that my readers are better than that.

Please enter only once per person.

So comment away, and thanks once more for being great readers/subscribers!

Friday, December 16, 2011

What's Mine is Not Yours

Scugger left a comment on my previous post that I wanted to address today:
I need an opinion. Since the 4.3 patch dropped I've been aggressively selling gems, belt buckles, leg armor, mining and LW bags and some BS rods. My guildmates hae noticed and I have taken my gold holdings from 50K to about 250K. Now my guildmates are mad at me accusing me of forcing them to buy high priced gems and complaining that they cannot list anything themselves to make gold since I keep undercutting on all the goods I'm selling. What is the best way to handle this? I tried to explain that there were 20-25 other JC's competing and driving prices but the message did not seem to register with my GM.
This seems like a pretty unfortunate situation to find oneself in, and one that might not be too foreign to a few people.

People who win the lottery tend to complain that they have family members coming out of the woodwork looking for money.  Likewise, if people feel their friends or guild members have a lot of gold they may feel entitled to some of it for some reason or another.  It's your choice whether you want to give handouts, I'm going to assume you're someone who does not for the purpose of this post.

Avoiding the Issue in the First Place
The best way to avoid these types of people is just to avoid being a known gold maker.  So, step one is don't write a gold blog. <_<  If you do write a blog or post on a forum like the Consortium use an username that's not affiliated with your character or server so that people don't stumble upon the fact you're a gold maker.

This applies in-game as well.  Roll alts with unrelated names and create your own guild bank so that people won't see their friend selling them a 400g Inferno Ruby. Avoid having people who aren't close friends on your RealID friends list to keep your alts secret.

Playing Nice with Friends and Guildies
If you are public about your gold making, as I am, or if you are "found out" what happens will largely depend on your relationship with these friends.  

To avoid my friends thinking I'm Ebeneezer Scrooge unwilling to help others I offer services for free to friends and guild members. I'll cut gems, do enchants, whatever, for free.  While it may cut out a potential sale it's a small amount in the grand scheme of things and often the good will ends up being reciprocated somehow.

That said, I don't give items away regularly.  If Inferno Rubies are 400g and Mr. DPS didn't stockpile Inferno Rubies that's his problem, not mine.  Think about living with roommates; while you may share a living space, generally speaking, your food is yours and they aren't entitled to it.  If they can't make rent one month they may be able to rely on you for a bit of support but you're not their mother/father and you're not there to pay their way.

Do be kind, courteous, and within reason generous with offering free crafting. If you feel comfortable and confident doing so you may even offer to help them learn to make gold, or direct them to gold making resources. Never feel obligated to give away gold or items to those who are less market-savvy than yourself. If your friends are claiming they are entitled to your wealth or its products they are not your friends.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Gems: Selling an Item, Not a Service



First off, allow me to do a little dance in honor of this, my 200th post.  /dance Okay, now on with the actual post.

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With epic gems being so heavily gated at the  moment the supply is very limited and prices are quite high.  Now, as a relatively wealthy raider I've spent a fair amount of gold on these gems to give myself stat boosts here and there in my new gear.

But I have a problem, and it looks something like this:


Let's say I'm a frost DK.  Frost DK's look for Strength/Haste with their orange gems, aka Fierce Lava Coral.  While there are four orange gems for me to choose from on the AH three are completely useless to me.  I have to buy the uncut piece for 9.8k if I want to buy a Lava Coral while the Fine, Reckless, and Deadly sellers have completely missed out on any opportunity to sell  to me.

This is mostly a plea to those who have cut these Fine, Reckless, and Deadly Lava Corals and to any JC who is pre-cutting their gems to sell: Please don't.

I am currently in the market for two Queen's Garnet since I owe them to a friend who traded me some gems I needed on the first day of the patch.  I would pay 10k each for these Queen's Garnets just to pay my friend back promptly.  But I cannot because he is a warrior and everyone's pre-cutting their Queen's Garnets to Brilliant and selling them for 5,000g. That person could have had 10,000g per gem but instead, by pre-cutting their gem they missed out on every bit of my gold.

When there is a plethora of supply and JCs to cut that supply you are effectively selling the service; the gem is more expensive cut because anyone can go get an Inferno Ruby but not everyone can cut it.

When the supply is this low you are no longer selling the service. The service is an afterthought, a 10g tip in Trade for most people.  The value is not in the cut or the profession to cut it, it's in the item itself.  It's this value that you diminish drastically by cutting the gem. By pre-cutting a gem into anything you are narrowing your pool of potential buyers significantly and completely alienating many buyers like myself.

Please give a thought to this for any item you selll, but particularly for hard-to-come-by item enhancements and consumables like this.  While cutting a gem isn't necessarily the worst idea it's important to recognize just what you may be doing to your buying pool by doing so.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Replica Dungeon Sets Sellable on the AH

Transmogrifiers and gold makers alike should enjoy this little gem.  One of the goals of the Darkmoon Faire was to allow people to get retired models; namely the dungeon sets that used to drop in Stratholme and other endgame vanilla dungeons.

You're able to get the model of both the normal and the upgraded Dungeon sets from Barum and Baruma in the Darkmoon Faire. Barum sells the normal sets, Baruma sells the upgraded versions.  This was great news to people like me who loved a few sets but didn't get around to farming them before they were removed.

The bad news is that they cost a lot of tickets.

Boots - 55
Gloves - 55
Belt - 55
Wrists - 55
Hat - 75
Pants - 75
Chest - 75
Shoulders - 75



So we're looking at 520 tickets for a full set.  Bashiok has reported that the maximum amount of tickets a player can get from any Faire is 145 tickets. As I was told there are tickets in the PvP arena I believe that those who truly apply themselves or are very lucky may be able to get more, but not much more. If you're grinding this on one character it will take four months, and that's assuming this is your first priority and you're not after any of the neat mounts and pets.

What's a better option for impatient collectors? Get them from others!  Each of these pieces is BoE.  A player with enough alts can get an entire set in one month if they get all the tokens on every alt.

What's a better option for impatient collectors with a lot of gold? You. Gold makers can both farm these themselves on mains and alts if they don't care for the items, or even just look for items to flip if they appear on the AH.


A Tip
I would recommend focusing on the more visible pieces if you're buying some to put on the AH.  Ideally you may want to seek out a buyer beforehand instead of betting on a certain set.  If you do buy the pieces to put on the AH consider what is most visible.  Most people will want the chest and shoulders of every set, but many may not see the rarely-visible wrists as an important piece to get.  If the chest is a cloth set with a robe there's virtually no need to get pants.  Keep these principles in mind when trying to figure out what pieces will be in highest demand.

Make lots of gold! Any Argent Dawners selling these pieces let me know! ;)

Deathwing Down

A WTFaid? follow-up! I did end up hitting 8/8 in the first week! Hooray!  I was even able to Fraps the kill, so here it is.  I'd intended to have vent but that didn't work out so well so I hope you like the music; mute it if you don't.

Edit: Audio was removed due to copyright. Eh, you win some you lose some. Just listen to your favorite music and assume that's what the actual music was. ;)

It shows the fight but not RP or cut scene spoilers.


Sunday, December 4, 2011

WTFaid?: 4.3 Impressions


Welcome to another installment of WTFaid?, a semi-regular column in which I discuss things that might not directly impact gold making, but that I want to talk about nonetheless. If you're looking for gold-specific tips, check out my archive and blog roll! If you're looking to get some insight into the mind of Faid, God help you. Also, read on!

4.3 has arrived and raiders are finally able to kill Deathwing.  There are new five mans, epic gems, a new Darkmoon Fair, and more!  I have to say it: I'm really pleased with this patch.  Here are some reasons why:

Five Mans
I haven't seen a new five man since Cataclysm release date.  I did so much ZG and ZA before they were rehashed for Cataclysm that it was just more annoying trolls when they released Rise of the Zandalari.  This was the first patch in a long time I felt I got a lot of new content for my non-raiding characters.

I really enjoy the new five mans.  Most of the fights are interesting and have new or relatively new mechanics.  Rarely can I explain a fight by saying "It's just like ____________ in ________ raid." like I'm able to do with so many other fights in the game.   I felt the instances were quite fresh.

In fact, I've been so not-bored with the new five mans that I've actually sought out alts to gear up just to have some fun.  My DK, Priest, and Shaman all went from 335-353 item level to 376 in the span of two days.

The Northrend Nerf
Another alt-friendly change is the nerf to Northrend leveling. It now takes less experience per level and they've moved a lot of quests inside the dungeons.  Now when you zone in all of the quests which were previously outside and needed to be gathered before queueing are right there and several have even had new quests added; leveling in Northrend is now much quicker.

As a result I've also been leveling more alts again.  I had four alts which had stagnated around Northrend but I've been enjoying dusting them off and playing them once more as well.


Transmogrification!
For Faid this won't be a big deal until next week. I want Faid to wear Season 11 and so I've not done much for her but have greatly enjoyed finding neat outfits for my alts. I'm not farming old stuff for that perfect piece but have been enjoying playing with pieces I do have on hand. Add to that the ability to transmogrify heirlooms, taking even more monotony out of alt leveling, and I love Transmog!

The New Darkmoon Faire
The first few times they nerfed Insane I raged pretty hard. I guess I've raged myself out and don't really care anymore, so the fact people can now daily their way to Darkmoon Exalted was an afterthought.

I thought they did a great job. Particularly with the deathmatch arena.  Since it's just a big thing and there are achievements for it there's always a massive PvP free-for-all every three hours and I  love watching and sometimes participating.

I've nearly got all the non-Deathmatch achievements and fished up my sea pony pet right away.  I love this event, it's far and away better than the Argent Tournament and I think it's something I'll look forward to every month.

At least if you ever miss the crappy old Faire wowcrendor has recorded its badness for history:



But what about raids?
I've had some ups and downs when thinking about the new raiding style.  Looking for Raid is a joke to anyone with a pulse.  As long as your tank knows where to put the boss and what way he needs to face him you'll win and get loot, it's that simple.  I mused for a while that LFR was just teaching new or casual raiders exactly the opposite of what it should be: that you can ignore mechanics and no one will care and you'll one-shot the boss.

Plus many of the fights are altogether different due to the LFR changes. Yor'sahj the Unsleeping, for example, has a different kill order on the globules. In normal mode you need to kill Green as a top priority but in LFR mode you can ignore the green altogether.

I was under the impression that LFR was, as well as being a raid option for casual players, a way for guilds to learn2raid, for lack of a better term.  I don't mind the easier bosses, but the fact that they're so easy mechanics can be entirely ignored makes me wonder how well it will prepare people for Normal modes.

Speaking of Normal modes, let's talk about LotI.  I waited to make this post until tonight because I wanted to say I was 8/8 in the first week. I may still be if tomorrow goes well but currently we are only 7/8 and it's mostly my fault.

We steamrolled through the first four bosses, they were complete and total jokes.  We ran into some issues on Ultraxion (Once again, my fault) because several of us just had some issues with the timing of when to leave the twilight realm. Once we got the swing of it though it was a bit of a tight DPS check but we made it through pretty easily.

The boat was kind of a hassle until we figured out that a hunter Flare down will keep Sappers from stealthing, then it was smooth sailing.

Spine of Deathwing was interesting. Not because the fight was difficult but because if we fell off the back due to silliness or a wipe being called we would be DCd. This ended up causing me to be unable to rejoin the raid after a wipe and we had to stop raiding that night while we waited for a GM to extract poor Faid from the nether.

We reconvened tonight, trounced Spine and moved on to Madness.  This fight is actually really really boring for tanks.  While the fight itself is interesting to watch and the mechanics are neat with all the aspects the actual tank job, when you get down to it, is laughably dumb.  You tank a tentacle. When the tentacle casts the thing you pop a CD. Then the other tank tanks the tentacle and pops a CD when the tentacle casts the thing. Then you switch. Then you move to the other platform and do it again.  Seriously, that's it.

So we spent the first hour or so just learning the fight and me doing my little taunt/CD thing. By the time we'd figured out what Aspect order we were using, what we needed to do and who needed to stand where I was so bored I began to really lose my focus. I think by the end of the night I'd wiped the raid about 5 times due  to just zoning out with boredom and forgetting to use my cooldowns at the appropriate time.  I'm really hoping that the Mists of Pandaria tank model changes fix these sorts of mind-numbingly boring fights.

So let me repeat that: We're 7/8 even after quite a few bad screw ups and being cockblocked out of a night by DC issues.  In the first week of the content. Another guild on my server had killed Deathwing about 6 hours after the servers came up.

While there is still plenty of heroic content to chew through I can't imagine this is truly the last content patch.  They have to introduce a filler (likely with epic gem transmutes/for honor/etc.) or there are guilds that will be farming this content for nearly a year, just as ICC was set up.   So I anticipate filler content in a few months.

4.3 Is the Patch for Me!
All in all I'm very impressed with 4.3. It definitely revitalized my interest in the game which, while not gone, was fading slowly.  I think they did a great job and I can't wait to quit writing this blog post and get back to playing.

There were going to be some cool raid screenshots I took but Blogger crapped out about uploading them, so maybe I'll edit them in later. Sorry for the wall of text in the meantime.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

GCEs from Bountiful Bags

It only took eight months! For those who don't follow me on Twitter, why not? And also, you may not be aware I've been trying to keep people bumping my bug report since April.  It seems that 4.3 has finally brought an end to the ordeal.

scu at the Consortium forums has posted that GCEs are now proccing from Bountiful Bags and I can now confirm it from my own experience. At the moment Inferno Rubies are too profitable to warrant making spikes to DE but I'm sure once that changes I'll be incredibly pleased over this long-time-coming fix.