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Posts with tag Auction House

Breakfast Topic: Presenting the ever-accessible auction house!

So a few days ago, word was released that Blizzard is working on a new feature for the ever-changing armory...they're going to add auction house access without being in-game!

Now, I don't know about you, but I find that all kinds of awesome. I love playing the auction house (it's oddly satisfying...don't ask), and have many times in the past simply logged on to check my auctions to see how they were doing. Personally, I find this to be an amazingly convenient ability for the armory. Unfortunately, the dreaded 'p-word' has reared its ugly head:

Premium.

Most of us know that 'premium features' will usually equal 'if you want it, let's see some green.' I have to say that I wasn't super impressed with the idea of paying for yet another feature, but in today's world of micro-transactions and the like, would you pay extra money for that kind of convenience? Take the iPhone app, for example. Say the 'freemium' version is, well, free, and the premium armory--complete with auction house tracking--is...an extra five dollars. As far as micro-transactions go, that's not too shabby. Honestly? I'd pay it.

So what do you guys think? Are you excited about the auction house tracking in the WoW Armory? Do you think it's the worst idea ever? If you like it, would you pay for it? Yes/no/banana?

Discuss!

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Insomnia, or, I can't sleep so I play when no one else is on



One of the biggest problems I have is that, from time to time, I suffer from extremely painful bouts of insomnia. I've had this issue ever since I was a very young boy, and it still reoccurs from time to time. This has lead me to discover the joys and pains of logging on to play World of Warcraft in the middle of the night. Since I tend to play on servers in the same basic time zone as I am (Edmonton, Alberta if you're curious) this often leads me to discover that it can be an entirely different world when most of the server is asleep.

One of the large positives is that I often catch the Auction House when a bid is about to expire - I got my BE pally a Sword of the Magistrate for practically nothing not an hour ago, for example. It's also a lot easier for me to do quests that involving farming mobs that are otherwise popular either because the quest itself is popular or because they drop something folks want, like the elementals in the badlands that everyone and their parents tend to farm.

There are some big downsides, though. For starters, instances? Forget about it. If I can find two people on at my level at any given time it's a small miracle. Also, when you're bleary eyed from lack of sleep, that may not be the best time to try and do an annoying escort quest. Admittedly, I tend to find escort quests in general to be the second most annoying quests in the game, with "bring me x number of the eyes/hearts/brains of y" being the absolute worst, but I want to level my characters so I do them anyway.

Is anyone else out there playing on the graveyard shift? It sometimes seems like I'm totally alone, but a few folks must be toiling away alongside me. Do you prefer it or are you just there sometimes? What's good, what's bad about it for you? I sometimes like the relative peace and quiet, but I miss being able to get a Sunken Temple group when I need one. And I can't say that playing the game makes me feel any more rested.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, WoW Insider Business, Virtual selves, NPCs

Addon Spotlight: Auction Filter Plus

I want to apologize to the other writers for dominating the Add-on Spotlight feature for a few weeks. I think it's an obvious I'm an add-on superfreak. I'm constantly upgrading add-ons, trying add-ons, ditching add-ons, and replacing add-ons. This feature, therefore, is something I really enjoy.

I want to talk to you today about "the little add-on that could." This little piece of programming brilliance has been around forever and over the course of time some of it's features have even been worked into the default World of Warcraft user interface. Auction Filter Plus won't die though. The author just keeps honing and refining it for all of us to enjoy.

What does it do? It allows you to manipulate auction search results in ways that the default auction interface does not. How many times have you been to the auction house looking for silk cloth for example, typed "silk cloth" in the search field and had results that included "bolts of silk cloth" as well? One of the things AFP does is allow you to do "exact" name searches which allows you to find precisely what you're looking for without a lot of "bogus" (as my guild leader would say) search results.

Suppose you need a lot of that silk cloth, fast. Your wallet is heavy, you're not worried about the price, and you just need a ton of silk and you don't want to mess around with the vendors who are selling it one-piece-at-a-time. AFP also allows you to specify what stack sizes you want to search. So in this example, you could click the "Stacks of 20" box and it would only show results that were stacks of twenty.

The most obvious and beautiful feature of AFP though, is shown to the player on a budget who is shopping for stackable items. I used to only buy big stacks, because I assumed people who were selling the items in bulk were offering better prices. I've found since installing AFP that this isn't always true. Once you have your search results in the auction window, you can click "Show Best Deals" which will then categorize auction offers based on the cost-per-item. Sometimes the lowest buyout is not always the best deal!

You can also hide items that don't have a buyout, or (if you're a gear freak like me) hide items you can't afford. There are other features, but the best way to find out about them is to download the add-on, or check out the write-up on one of the add-on sites. In my books, this little gem will always be a "must have" in my add-on arsenal.

Filed under: Add-Ons, AddOn Spotlight, Making money

Enchants on the AH in WotLK

On the French-language EU forums, Blizzard poster Thyvene gives enchanters a hint of news on something they've been wanting for a long time: the abilitity to sell their enchants on the auction house. For those of you attempting to confirm on the site, but failing your language skill check, Thyvene's comments approximately translate to:

The developers plan to give to enchanters the possibility to sell their enchantments at the auction house, nevertheless this shouldn't be implemented into the game before the next expansion, Wrath of the Lich King.

Of course, without knowing an official release date for Wrath of the Lich King, this change could still be a year off. However, I'm certainly looking forward to a time when my enchanter won't have to stand around in a major city spamming macros in oder to market and sell my wares.

[Thanks, Boubouille!]

Filed under: Enchanting, Wrath of the Lich King

The story of your first epic

Warden Staff
The first time you experience an event in World of Warcraft is something you never forget. The first time you saw one of the enormous player cities. The first time you saw a player on a mount. The first time you got a random tell from a gold spammer.

Amadeais of the Nazjatar server remembers his first purple, the Underworld Band. He created a thread on the official forums and many have chimed in with their own first epics. From the hard-won PvP purples to the surprise gift from a generous guildmate.

What about you? What was the first purple drop you remember receiving? Was it a world drop, boss loot or did you save up your coppers and bought it off the Auction House? Do you still keep it in your bank? Tell us your story.

Filed under: Items, Odds and ends

Are Auction Houses coming to Shattrath?


In a word, no. Blizzard blue Nethaera posted in response to the umpteenth request for an Auction House in Shattrath. At least this time we got an explanation behind the decision.

Blizzard feels an AH in Shattrath will eliminate the only reason for players to interact with others in older cities. They reason players can use the Shatt portals to get to the AH in the older cities and then activate their hearthstone to get back to the Outlands.

This plan also spreads out the population. Anyone remember when their was only one AH for each faction? Ironforge was known as Lagforge. Think what would happen to your framerate should they put an Auction House in the Outlands capital. Yeah, not pretty.

Of course "not currently planned" doesn't mean "never." When the WotLK expansion launches and Dalaran becomes the player hub, they may reconsider. Until then, don't be getting friendly with any Innkeeper other than the ones in Shattrath, because your hearthstone setting isn't going to be changing for a long time. Unless you're a mage.

Filed under: Economy, The Burning Crusade

The biggest bargain in the AH

Now that the 48-hour downtime has begun for "selected realms", which unfortunately includes my home turf of Magtheridon, I feel I can release this delicious orange of wisdom for future downtimes.

Blizzard GMs have confirmed that auctions do indeed continue during downtime. Specifically, this means that if you find an auction with an extremely low bid using Auctioneer and bid on it right before the server goes down, you can pick up that item insanely cheap.

Hopefully, this method has netted me two stacks of Arcane Dust for the low, low price of 1 silver 10 copper. Since other realms may be suffering the same 48-hour downtime, this plan may help ease the pain of two days without WoW by knowing you're at least making some gold!

Edited to fix link.

Filed under: Making money

Insider Trader: Working the Auction House

Insider Trader is your inside line on making, selling, buying and using player-made products.

Ready to become a market force? This week's Insider Trader positions you to fatten your pockets and line your coffers with every trip to the Auction House. No doubt about it, there are loads of AH guides and "rules" with advice on how to buy, how to sell and even how to play the market to resell items for profit. We'll show you where to find the information, mods and ideas you need to start using the Auction House with confidence.

The best guide to the actual mechanics of using the Auction House comes from Blizzard itself. A careful review will give you a firm grasp of the basic parameters for profitable buying or selling. Beyond the basics, what most players want is solid advice on what's worth selling on the AH, how much to charge and how to get the best buys. And that's where we start looking at how to gain the edge over other players ...

Read more →

Filed under: Economy, Add-Ons, Guides, Making money, Insider Trader (Professions)

Sold to the highest bidder, or is it?

The Auction House system in WoW is one of the more popular mechanics in the game. Having a way to trade goods is one of the ways that Blizzard puts the Massively Multiplayer in MMO. But I know that when I use the AH, 90% of the time I buy something using the buyout price. I don't have the patience to participate in a bidding war. And evidently this is a trend within the game.

Tobold explains that the system is actually designed so that players will be more than likely to choose the buyout rather than play the bidding game. Part of this comes from the fact that to not have an item sell is to lose the down payment we place on it when a bid is first posted. With the Auction House as it is currently designed the bidder gets no sense of the bid prices, of the history of bids, of really any of the information that someone might see on an auction site like eBay. It's actually too transparent for the purpose as an auction system.

There have been suggestions as to how this might be improved. Perhaps, like Tobold says, tweaking the interface so that the auctions have more information provided might work. Reader Joe Szilagyi wrote in with a different suggestion. He mentioned the possibility of making the AH like the PvP system, system-wide rather than server-specific. He explains that this would be a way to bolster the economies of lower population servers while at the same time allowing loot to be available to both the Horde and the Alliance. The daunting task of such a reconfiguration makes this an unlikely solution, but it poses an interesting hypothesis. Either way you look at it, the Auction House system is a good game mechanic with some room for improvement. What would you suggest as a way to fine tune the AH?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard

This space for rent

There are many places that lie empty within Azeroth, those interesting nooks and crannies that get our imaginations going. While exploring Stormwind I came across Cut-throat Alley, a little cul-de-sac hidden away in the Canal District. This is exactly the sort of place that makes me curious. I can see in my mind's eye a thoroughfare bustling with shady dealers and rogues, tucked away and out of site from the rest of the city, their dealings too dark to go on under the public eye. One of my favorite empty spaces is now filled: I used to camp all my characters out in what is now the Stormwind Auction House, since I enjoyed pretending it was my own private home within the city.

Or the courthouse in the Dwarven District. Here the great magistrates of Stormwind might have sat, dealing out justice to those who break the realm's laws. There are all sorts of stories that we can build out of these empty spaces. I once found an empty cave in Azshara without mob or mining node, the sort of place you might expect a hermit to hang out in, or a mountain troll, hungering for the flesh of wayward travelers.

Perhaps these are the places that originally had content but somehow it changed over the course of the development cycle. In the case of Cut-throat Alley, it looks to me like it was the original home for the rogues of Stormwind, but somehow seemed too difficult to find. Now, being that I play mostly Alliance characters, I don't know the empty spaces that might be found in Orgrimmar or Undercity. But these places get me wondering.

Are there any empty spaces in the game that you wonder about?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends

Auction House Updates in 2.1

I love the Auction house. I've got a mule parked there just specifically so I can log over periodically, scan, and then snap up any bargains and either stash them for tradeskills, send them to an alt, or resell them if it's an item that has been severely under priced. (I can't tell you how many copies of the Savory Deviate Delight recipe I've bought from the AH for 40s that I resold for at least 5g.) But I have to admit, I've never thought that the search interface was too terribly good. Then I saw a blue reply to a forum request for changes to the auction house that made me a happy panda. According to Eyonix:

...We're also working to improve our user-interface, which includes the auction house. Below are some of the changes slated to be implemented for the next patch.

  • The Auction House now has a reset button that will reset all fields you have entered to allow you to quickly try a different search.
  • When items are being put up for sale on the Auction House, if the item you are putting up for bid is the same item and quantity as the previous item you put up for bid, it will automatically fill in the price and buyout for you with your previous price.
  • Gems are now searchable in the Auction House under the heading of Gem with the gems then broken up by color so you can search for all gems of a specific color.
I just wonder if the end version of automatic fill they implement will remember prices from when you were logged in before like Auctioneer does? Or will the auction house "forget" things as soon as I log out -- or perhaps even as soon as I close the auction house interface? It's not enough of a change to replace Auctioneer for me, but it's a step in the right direction at least.

And I lest I forget -- Hooray searchable gems by color in case you missed it in the previous patch notes!

[via the General forum]

Filed under: Patches, Items, News items

I'll bank on it


Recently I donated a character slot to the cause of guild management. One of our guild officers thought it was a good time to start a guild bank system, and since I had an extra character sitting around (goodbye Fela, I'll miss you) I offered my services for managing the guild bank. So we created Donations, an officious little gnome with a penchant for bureaucracy. Our system is highly organized, thanks to minds that are substantially better at these things than mine.

We built the donations system along the gold standard. Each item donated is assigned a point total based on how much gold it is worth in the auction house. I downloaded Auctioneer, and that has cut my research time in half. The guild bank accepts certain crafting supplies along with monetary donations. Any greens or blues donated are auctioned and the player is given points corresponding to the amount of money it sold for. The points are a lot like DKP, you spend them on items or gold whenever you need them. The more points you have, the more points you can spend on items donated to the guild bank, or withdraw in the form of cash should you need to pay for some hefty purchase in the future – epic flying mounts anyone?

So far the system has been pretty successful in its beta phase. Several of us, myself included, were able to save enough points for mounts for our alts. I am hoping that when Blizzard instigates its guild bank system in the future it is something that is this intuitive. I know personally I like being able to get value from items that I cannot use (exactly how much Knothide leather does an Alchemist need?), and it's important to me that we are able to provide supplies to those in the guild who need them. What are you guild bank systems like? Do you tithe, or are the donations all voluntary? And what would you like to see in the guild bank system Blizzard is proposing as an addition to the game?

Filed under: Guilds, Making money

Weekly AH data on Curse

This is interesting -- I had no idea they were doing it, anyway. Apparently Curse Gaming has been running a weekly story where they post the median global sale prices (from WoWEcon) on all sorts of high-selling commodities. It's a nice read, and helps me get a feel for how my server is compared to the global average, as well as giving me a touchstone for how to price things.

It's broken down into categories, like flasks, food, recipes, trade goods, etc. There aren't a lot of surprises on the list (well, I spend a fair amount of time at the AH, so that might just be me). Mage books top the spellbook list, as always -- why is that? Perhaps it's because mage books teach new ranks of core spells like Conjure Water, whereas other classes' books just tend to teach group versions of buffs; you can get by longer without those. There's an interesting discrepancy between Fel Armaments, at around 20g, and Arcane Tomes, at about 17g. I guess Aldor is more popular than Scryer. Fel Iron is worth considerably more on my server than usual, though most other prices are about in line.

In the recipes section, it looks like Blacksmithing has the most in-demand stuff -- people are paying 1200g for Plans: Dirge, and 1000g for three other plans. None of the other professions have any recipes that high. Anyway, go check out the full list over at Curse -- it's pretty neat, and has coloring depicting whether the price of an item has risen or fallen since the previous week. Thanks, Curse people, this is a nice resource.

Filed under: Ranking, News items, Economy

Ask WoW Insider: Are BoE drops still worth selling on the AH?

It's time once again for our weekly edition of Ask WoW Insider. Last week we asked you about WoW client performance on a Mac, and this week reader MrRaist wonders about the usefulness of listing BoE drops on the auction house after the expansion:
My question to you is: Are BOE drops still worth it? It seems that anything that drops for me, green or blue, never seems to sell anymore on the AH. Most quests give better rewards than BOE drops, and I end up vendoring the drops for instant cash, rather than paying the AH fees. Even a decent BOE blue drop was vendored after 7 or 8 shots at the AH, lowering the price every time. Consumables still sell really well, but not weapons and such. What is WOW Insider's thoughts?
What's been your experience with selling your BoE drops since the expansion -- harder? easier? Do you have any tips for selling items -- set at lower buyouts? advertise in trade channel instead of putting on the AH? Let us know your thoughts in the comments, and send us your questions for next week to ask AT wowinsider DOT com.

Filed under: Economy, The Burning Crusade, Ask WoW Insider, Making money

On the topic of farmers...


My priest has been, for some time now, looking for a pattern for the Truefaith Vestments - the epic crafted priest robes. While I would occasionally see a Robe of the Archmage or a Robe of the Void pattern, I've not seen any of my own. However, over the past couple of weeks, I've seen more and more Robe of the Archmage patterns - as seen above. The cost has dropped dramatically, as well - what once sold for a hundred gold and up is now, as you see, more often selling for 30 to 40, when they sell at all.

This has started to puzzle me, as the pattern drops off of Pyromancers in lower Blackrock Spire, of which there are few, and difficult to get to. I've gone with a number of groups that refuses to attempt the pull with the Pyromancers, simply because it's large and difficult. So where then, do these patterns come from? Several commenters on Thottbot claim that you can solo your way to the right area with the use of stealth or invisibility potions, and one poster goes into some detail about two rogues taking the group down with timely use of sap, vanish, and evasion.

But even if the pattern can be acquired with the efforts of one or two players, this doesn't explain the sudden appearance of so many in the marketplace. It's possible that the drop rate has been increased, but it seems unlikely that the drop rate of one of the epic robe patterns would go up while the other two remain the same. In my past experience with the game, a sudden flood of rare items on the market has been an indication of a new farming technique or hack, allowing farmers to now easily acquire something that was usually difficult. (For an example of similar circumstances in the past, see this old Dire Maul hack.) However, at present, there's no evidence one way or the other - so this remains simply an oddity...

Filed under: Items, Odds and ends, Economy

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