Thursday, December 2, 2010

Mad Cash

Very much enjoying our new broken world.  The quest chains are TONS of fun, from piloting giant tree-trimming machines to starting bar fights on a cruise ship, they really did a good job to make leveling more fun and less grindy.  Haven't really found anything that has changed that I DON'T like, its all good.  Now I have to wait another 5 days until the expansion is released, and then it can start all over! 

Probably the toughest part of the new zones, is I don't know where to go next!  I had gotten so used to "... ok, Barrnes is all tapped out, now I'm headed to Thousand Needles.  Ok, done here, now its on to Stranglethorn.  Ok, now on to Tanaris, now to Un Goro, now to Plaguelands and then on to Outland!"  Well, Thousand Needles is a higher level zone now, and one of the areas that has totally changed.  My rookie Druid at level 11 is in Ashzara which used to be like a level 45 zone i think... and I haven't spent any time at all on the other continent other than Undercity which hasn't changed.  Now, its almost as if I have to READ the quests in order to know where to go next.  Oh Darn, what a tragedy! 

Currently, while there is still a lot of traffic, the AH has dropped off dramatically... I'm selling potions with zero competition, and bolts of silk the same.  Profits on these items are up 50-100%!  Also, I got a tip from Cold to buy up Arcane Crystals and make up some Arcanite and Arcanite rods for sale.  There were MASSES of Arcane crystals for under 1g, so initially I bought 10, then bought some Thorium ore for 50s each, and made up 10 Arcanite Bars... which sold for 14g each in just a few hours!  that's something like 700% profit!  I went back and cleaned out the Arcane Crystals, bought up some more Thorium and sent some to my Blacksmith to make a few Rods... which I sold 2 of 3 for 70g each.  Rods are something you really can't sell in bulk which is why I only made a few.  The profit margin is much higher, but you gotta diversify.  It appears as if people online now are in Gather mode and just selling for what they can get in order to have their skills maxed out for when the xpac hits... but I still managed to clear a cool 80g for my rookie, who is Miner/Herber and just selling. 

Notes for the week:  Need to get Transmutation specialist.  Also would like to level an Engineer soon, don't have a spot available.  Thinking about dropping Herbing on my Alchemist and leveling Engineering, and just buying up the Herbs i need to continue leveling Alchemy, but that would be a serious drain. 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Found out last night that the Shattering of Azeroth is happening right now.  Kind of cool, been waiting for awhile not feeling like doing much without the new world to explore, however there is one thing that I didn't get to complete... World Traveller. 

I know, I can still travel the world, but its changed now.  All the same zones will be there, but different.  I wanted to travel the world as it WAS, because I have all the time in the world to travel as it IS.  Ah well...

Anyway, I wish I knew about the patch in advance, I would have off loaded some of my stockpiles last night... I intend to roll a Troll Druid as soon as teh breaking happened, which means I can do that now and get my Gather on, and I've got bags ready to go for him.  I'm betting there will be hundreds of new toons on the servers today looking to get bags, and I won't be able to supply them!  Oh well, I'm sure the release next month will be even more productive.  I'll check prices tonight and see what things are going for, and try to make a few bucks on the outside

Monday, November 22, 2010

Old Times

Haven't been playing much this past week, busy with Family things and honestly, the interest is a bit low.  I've got 4 alts plus a bank, and I spend most of my time on the bank.  I can't seem to get into the serious cash flow that i keep reading about... but realistically, that is for people who play a lot more than 6 hours a week.  Ah well...

Played for an hour or so last night while sitting at the laundromat, bought up a TON of Silk cloth for under a gold a stack.  Been stock piling Silk for Cata, bought up some Runecloth for 2g50s a stack to save until Winterveil.  Got quite a stock pile of low end mats to sell in the coming weeks, my bank is nearly full with a combination of Copper, cloth and bags.  Still selling a few potions, but the market has really dropped off... then I noticed the Thanksgiving event was underway and realized that explains it.  Then I mosied over there with Gulg, and sat down to dinner, and a funny thing happened.  I was having fun! 

Ok, not like 'oh my god this is GREAT!' or anything, but just sitting and throwing food and eating and playing the game without a goal in mind.  This is the second Turkey Feast I've been in the game for and nothing has changed with it... but I remembered how much FUN it was last year, going through it the first time, and actually reading the quests.  I realized thats what I was missing about this game; the discovery of new things.  That is what the adventure is about, not just going through the motions which is what i've been doing.  Going through them, for what?  Because I'm paying to play?  Hell, if that is the only reason I'm playing, I'll quit.

It's begun to seem as if I don't have enough time to play, so when I do there is SO much that I want to get done, that I end up doing nothing at all.  I want to get all my characters to 80, i want to recruit for the guild to have a good 10-man squad to do ALL the raids, I want to help my friends meet their goals, Gulg to World Traveller, Nikodhemus to kill all the bosses (whatever achievement that is, who cares!  He will show the world HE is the mightiest!), Ghornik the Shaman up to 80, Nikail up to tanking heroics and high end content... then when I log in for the 1 or 2 hours I can in a day, it all just collapses on me and becomes not fun anymore but like a job.  And jobs suck.

And then I was throwing food and having dinner.  And I remembered again why I play the game.  I'm not in a competition with anyone.  I'm not in some race to get to a million gold, or to level 80 (85) before anyone.  I'm there because it is a fascinating world to discover.  I'm there because I LOVE to game!  Because I love using my brain and my abilities to overcome obstacles.  I hopped on Nikodhemus, and signed up for Drak Tharon Keep, and I PAID ATTENTION.  I looked at the bad guys I was killing, focused on them, not just hitting my rotation as quickly as I could.  I listened to the final boss scream out his death curse, and I had a GREAT time again.

I read a lot of warcraft blogs, one of which is The Noisy Rogue, where it appears Adam is having the same trouble but going about it in the wrong way.  He has lost the magic of the game as well, but chooses to blame Blizzard rather than himself.  While I do agree that the pre-cataclysm quests are kinda lame compared to others, they are still there when they really don't have to be.  It IS up to Blizzard to come out with challenging material for my enjoyment and my money, but it is also up to me to enjoy the game!  If you are upset that the game doesn't challenge you like it used to, its not the games fault, it is you that has changed.  You are no longer challenged by the same things, because you've already done them in the past.  Warcraft is still the same game it was in Vanilla, modified slightly by expansions and patches, but still the same.  There is only so many ways you can look at that rubix cube before you've really seen every facet and its time to put it down.  Does that make it a bad cube?  Or does it mean you no longer enjoy it because you've explored every nook and cranny of it and have run out of ways to entertain yourself with it?

Gah, this is getting very close to a relationship speech, so I'm going to end it here.  I hope to play tonight, and by 'play', I mean REALLY play again.

Monday, November 15, 2010

On the payroll

Still stockpiling mats for Winterveil and Cataclysm release, many of my normal selling items are down: Netherweave bags are down to 8g from 11, Mammoth Mining Sacks are down to under 100 where I've sold several at near 300, Lesser Invisibility are selling for under 4 down from 6... The market seems to be slimming down as we get nearer the expansion, but there are a few success stories namely in the form of Potions.  Swiftness potions are still selling for between 6 and 8 each, especially on the weekends.  Also, I posted Free Action potions for 20g just to see if the sold, and they VANISHED within a few hours!  There are one or two guys online who make Swiftness potions, not as aggressively as I do, so i just wait for them to go through their cycle of undercuts before i post 20.  (Never post your entire inventory, set up a few to keep demand high, people are willing to pay more if the item is rare!)  There is apparently no one posting Freedom potions, and I have a theory behind that as well. 

Free Action potions take 2 Blackmouth Oils and a Stranglekelp to make.  Stranglekelp is a pain in the butt to farm because it is underwater, but it is the ONLY underwater herb on Azeroth so it can be found in a lot of different places.  Blackmouth oil takes 2 oily Blackmouths to create, which require fishing in certain spots to get, then you need to get 4 of them to make enough for the potion.  usually costs me about 4-5g to get the oil, while Stranglekelp sells for about 3g each.  At max, its an 8g crafting price.  I've sold them for 14g before which is still a nice profit, and every one of them sells every time i post them.  Swiftness pots I've taken to posting stacks of 4 for 20-24g and sometimes I have to collect them when they don't sell. 

Herb prices have been very strange... Briarthorn is pretty common, but has been at over 3g each for a long time, where Swiftthistle is less common, and is dirt cheap.  I saw a guy asking if anyone needed low level herbs on Trade Chat, so I hit him up.  He's an 80 mage leveling Herbalism for Cata and wants to offload the herbs quickly, so i bought out all of his Swiftthistle, Briarthorn and Stranglekelp for 1.5g each, and told him to send me anything else he gets COD for the same price.  He thought it was a great idea as he didn't want to mess with the AH.  That's a pretty good price for both of us, hopefully he'll send me more today.  My cash is a bit low, down to like 40g on my Bank, I'll have to move somethings around to make sure I can pay his salary but it looks like it may turn into a good deal for as long as it lasts...

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Mediocre Players

My favorite times gaming almost always revolve around mediocre play.  I'm rarely on the top of the DPS meters but I do my job.  I feel that no matter what character I'm playing, my job is to survive and help the party survive.  This happens quite a bit on my Warlock, which is why I'm steadily moving away from my hunter as my main.  When you are in a dungeon, and you just float right through it, facerolling your rotation and watching TV while you play, that's really just called grinding and isn't all that fun.  When you are dungeoning and wiping time after time on a boss, especially one you've beaten a hundred times in the past, that is also a form of grinding and even less fun.  But, those rare times when you are just barely winning the battles, but still winning... THOSE are the times I live for, and make me keep coming back to this game.

Nikodhemus was in a random dungeon that turned into Utgardt Keep.  Now, its not often that I am the most experienced group member, but this was one of those times.  We wiped just after the first stair way in the building, on the 3rd pull.  I kind of laughed and made a comment about being used to storming through this on Heroic with a high powered toon, not paying much attention, and someone asked me what Heroic was.  One guy laughed, which is a jerk move in my opinion, but I just told the guy what it was and why you do it.  That sort of set the tone for the rest of the evening and let me figure out the caliber of player I was dealing with.  It was a combination of the tank being over aggressive and the healer being under aggressive.  We wiped again because of this against Prince Keleseth, as the tank ran head first into the room and pulled everything including the boss.  We actually almost took him, as I was able to pull my voidwalker towards the end and keep things a little managed, but it came down to just me and the healer and it was too much.  We came back in and made short work of him, and then went on to lose the tank in pile of trash mobs.  Once again, I pulled Voidy out, shot a Howl of Terror to buy us time, and 4 of us wiped the area clean.  Then it was on to Skarvald and Dalronn and we nearly bought it again for lack of tactics.  I've learned as ranged/Cloth dps to stand withing Skarvalds charge minimum so he doesn't wipe you out and cause more stress on the healer bringing you back.

We made it through there and got all the way to Ingvar the Plunderer.  We knocked him out of his first phase pretty readily, but had some trouble in the second.  At about 25%, the tank goes down.  At 20%, the healer goes down, and we are facing a wipe.  After the tank dropped, I started my summoning of the Voidwalker for the 3rd time, and was interrupted from Ingvar's stomp.  Not having any alternative, and the feral druid was still drawing heat, I started again and brought him out.  One dps dropped, and the druid was down to about 10% when the demon took over and grabbed the aggro, and we finally gunned him down!  Cheers all around, even though it was certainly a messy run, it was very entertaining to have to think again about my tactics instead of just trying to pile as much damage on as I could.  Things like Curse of Weakness that i rarely use came very much in handy when staving off that last bit.

This is why I love mediocrity in the game.  So called 'Elite' players who can top out the DPS meters rarely have the mental capacity to switch tactics mid-battle away from straight damage rotations.  Any battle that makes me do that is a good one.  I had a similar circumstance just last night with my Shaman and Scarlet Monastery.  We would have wiped had I pulled back from smashing bad guys to throw a few heals on the tank.  He was doing a great job holding aggro, the healer was doing a great job he just pulled too many and the HP was dropping too quick.  No one died, we were able to get back under control, and everyone had a blast by pushing it like that.

I'm an old school Dungeons and Dragons player, and every player had to do his job and take punches and use all of his/her abilities to get through the encounter.  There was no such thing as a Tank and Spank (though i've heard 4.0 has gone to that.  Blech!).  I played the healer most times, and darn it all if I didn't step right in the middle with my mace raised high and started swinging.  It was a GROUP in those days, where you were fighting for survival (and loot, and xp... but mostly survival), and you designed your character to be able to pick up the slack if someone fell.  The battle should not be over if the tank falls, at least not immediately.  The battle should only be over when the entire group is dead and everyone is corpse-running to get back in there.

I can't wait for the new content!  I hear its going to be TOUGH!  Hooray for crappy players!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Wailing Caverns

Had an interesting time last night going through some old content, and actually making some money on it.  A friend wanted a run through a good dungeon for skinning.  If you've ever done skinning, you'll know the drops are much better fighting elites than normals, but there usually aren't many dungeons with very many skinnable critters in them.  I enjoy Violet Hold for just this reason, as I can normally clear around 30 Borean Leather and a few Icy Dragonscales, with 2-3 dropped per critter.  Two really good low level dungeons for skinning are Wailing Caverns and Razorfen Downs, and as my Warlock has the mission to conquer all the dungeons in the game, Wailing Caverns was the way to go.

It's a pretty large dungeon, and I know now why I've never completed it in the past.  I hate maze dungeons.  Only about a third of it is a catacomb, but it is still a pain in the butt running back and forth through areas you've already completed.  That said, he was able to level his skinning from 130 to over 180 in about an hour and a half!  Also, we cleared something like 18 green/blue quality items and about 30 bits of cloth.  Even though it was low level even for him (he's level 34) and no xp was gained, it was a very satisfying run.

I also want to give a nod to the master of the cavern, one Mutanus the Devourer.  I'm a level 71 Warlock, and I had to kill this guy with my stick!  He was immune to everything I cast at him, including Fire Spells.  He actually took the better part of 5 minutes to beat down between me and my Warlock cohort, but it was a fun battle.  One step closer to being a Dungeon Master!  My next quest is to find a way into the Dead Mines without getting killed on the way in... Also, I need to complete Blackrock Spire, but at only 71, i'm not sure if I can just wade through that one. 

Guild Note:  Time to start recruiting!  I'm not interested in a bunch of jackass kids or super progression, I just want some cool people to roll with, possibly make some actual friends online.  I've told the officers to open the doors as they see fit, I'd like to get a solid 10 man group for raids, starting at Vanilla all the way through the Cataclysm bunch.  We'll see!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Whelpling

Made the Shatterer, haven't had a chance to put it on AH to see if it sells for a lot.  Spent about $175 on it, found Jade for 4-5g each and had some leather and grinding stones.  If i can sell it for at least $500 I'll be a happy dude!  Though anything I've read says it only sells for about 20, which is surprising because if it only sells for that much, why would anyone even KNOW that?  Because its friggin' hard to craft in the first place!  There are over 40 pieces to this thing, if you managed to get each one for 1g, it would still cost twice that, why would you sell it for less?  This seems to me to be a really great item, especially in terms of PVP, but I also haven't heard anyone talking about it.  Perhaps because its a low dollar item?  The gold blogs I read typically deal in high dollar things, ie; rare world drops, Crusader Orbs, glyphs and JC that sort of thing that sells for top dollar.  Which brings me to the Whelpling.

A friend of mine stumbled onto a Whelpling pet in the Badlands while leveling.  He knew it to be a super rare drop, so he threw it in the AH... for 4000g.  And sold it, same day.  And spent the rest of the day in the badlands, killing dragonlings trying to score another.  That's about twice the amount of the total bankroll I've ever had at one time!  I've been hovering around 1.5k for a long time (pre-robbery) and that was with small time makings, trying to get into high end crafting.  Perhaps I need to change my business model?  I just don't have the time/dedication to camp the AH, search through a 'snatch' list constantly... but maybe I should start?  I usually do sign in and spend about an hour just AH-ing, looking for good deals on craftables, but I haven't made a big score like that, like EVER.  I thought I was doing good selling Libram of Tenacity for $300, and Thorbia's Gauntlets for $150.

Really, while I may send Gulg down to the badlands for some farm time, I think I need to keep with my original business model, and make bags and stockpile silk and runecloth for Winter's grasp.  This will be the first time I've really planned for something like that, so I intend to document it fully.

Silk - Buyout at 2g or less per stack
Borean Leather - Buyout at 12g or less per stack
Haven't checked Runecloth market, need to do so
Need to spend an hour or so farming Small Eggs from in front of Silvermoon

With about 200 bolts of silk in stock, I imagine i've got about 80g or so invested in the silk market.  I've got 5 Mammoth mining sacks and 1 Traveller's Trapper pack, which cost about $35g to make, I'm hoping to turn them into about 500g profit come Cata time.  I'm going to continue to diversify, i've got 10 Netherweave bags, about 200 Copper ore, 100 iron ore, 80 or so Bronze bar, all of which purchased for less than 50s a peice.  The only thing I'm still doing business in right now is Potions, but the herb market has jumped sky-high lately, i'm assuming because of the Glyph cost increase.  Just a matter of time and using my play time wisely...