Greedy Goblin

Saturday, November 8, 2008

BoE analysis

As you could see 2 days ago, there will be more BoE items, both from boss drops and from crafting. They are not just lousy welfare epics for dumb kids who want purples, regardless stats. Wowhead currently list 25 BoE items over ilvl 200 excluding frost res gear. Since crafting recipe list are far from being complete and most raids are not even implemented, the high-level-BoE list will be longer and longer.

Let's split the BoE into crafted and raided.

Crafted BoE will make serious changes on the crafting business. Until now most high-level players selected their professions on the basis of craft-only bonuses (like ring enchants for enchanters) and the high-end-crafter-BoP-item. Since the craft-only bonuses seem to be quite balanced, and most crafter-only items are gone, only the most min-maxing high-end-raiders will have to bother choosing the "proper" profession.

For 99.9% of the players choosing a profession which they like does not give significant drawback versus choosing the "proper" profession. This means that you can choose whatever profession you like!

Since the collecting professions (skinning, mining, herbalism) also provide good bonuses, if you are hesitating, I highly recommend choosing these, maybe even 2 of them, it will be great income.

If you plan to make huge money from crafting BoE items and selling these, I have to chill you. Unless the recipe is extremely rare, people don't have to pay too much for it. The reason is that while you may want to charge high, most crafters will craft for a tip of a couple of golds with the buyer's mats. While you can make some good deals on the AH, it's rather trading than crafting (you can make the same deals without being crafter).

So my guess on high level BoE crafted epics:
  • extreme crafting prices while it's rare
  • moderate prices later
  • high material prices until most people has them
  • drop of material prices later
  • most profitable professions: collector, unless you are a raider and has a chance to get high level BoE-item's BoP-recipes.
The raided BoE epics will have a very different lifecycle than expected and what Blizzard intended. The reason is the very poor business skills of players, even raiders. A businessman would expect that if a BoE epic drops what sells for 10000G, the guild sells it and either put the money into the bank to support further raiding or distribute it among raiders (400G to everyone). Instead the following will happen:
  • If it's an upgrade to anyone in the raid, he will get it for free. Unless the guild is a very solid one, going for world or server firstkills, it's a stupid choice. Unless you go for firstkills, you sell the BoE and get another upgrades next week. If the guild is not very solid, it's stupid to give up your 400G for an upgrade of another guy who may leave the guild anytime.
  • If it's not an upgrade for anyone, someone will get it for an alt. While it's completely stupid for the other 24 people to let it happen (it's not a benefit to them anyway since the alt does not even makes their raid stronger), most people are just "try to be nice and friendly". Goblin opportunity: if this is the case, ask it for an alt and sell it on the AH. It's better if you have 10000G and a guy have an upgrade than have an alt an upgrade.
  • If it's not needed for an alt, it will land in the guild bank with the explanation "it will be good sometime". The main psychological reason is we have it, we are strong, we are a great guild. So value of hundred-thousands of gold will be in the guild bank. If you have some imagination, you can find out what will happen. If you don't, click here.
  • Only after the bank is full will the item be sold, but since it will be obsolate it will not sell for 10K like it would on the first day, rather around 500.
Obviously the BoE issue will affect gold selling. Blizzard made BoP to prevent rampart goldselling, since for gold now you can buy vanity and commodity, but not high-end items. Many people will attempt to buy gold to get this BoE. As we could see in the AV-cavedefender issue, Blizzard will wait until enough fish get into their net and mass-ban all buyers at once. I can't wait to see it.

On the seller side it will mean that gold gaining methods of goldsellers will change for worse. The damn farmers gained their gold by farming primals via bot or low-payed-chineese-farmers and sold the items on AH. Now the best selling items will be BoE epics, so the farmers will try to get these. It's unlikely that they organize raiding guilds, since they have to pull 25 chars to 80, gear them up and this makes the farming process costy (and bans risky). They will rather try to hack guildbanks and get into raids to ninja items. So watch out for Ni Hao class players!

However the "BoE = Goldseller paradise" is way overrated. Don't forget that you can buy good gear by buying characters and this black market still not destroyed WoW (mostly because the number of transactions are irrelevant compared to the 11M playerbase).


Evander said...


Great article once again even if I don't agree with everything :)

As you may have deduced from previous comments I'm firm believer in crafting professions. I think that the addage "get a gathering profession if you want to make gold and get a crafting profession if you want to loose money" is one of the great misconception about this game. Making money as a crafter is less obvious than flying around and gathering stuff but it's also a lot faster.

You argued that I could arrive at the same result without being the crafter myself. I would agree if it were on a small scale but if you're thinking about serious crafting it's just not practical or completly impossible.

Having someone else than yourself to craft your items brings complications. Unless it's a friend the crafter will expect a decent tip. Your crafter wont necessarely be on when you need him and if he see how well you're doing he may well become tempted in cutting the middle man(you) from the process...

Finding a dedicated crafter for a large scale selling is almost impossible. One of my current market is enchants. I sold over 120 scrolls of enchant on the ah this week. That would have requiered, an inscriptor to mill over 25 stacks of herbs and make vellums, as well as an enchanter to make 15-20 enchants every night. Finding mats for a large scale production is already enough troubles without having to worry about finding a crafter.

The other part of the article I dont share your opinion is about the prices of crafted gear. I've played in 3 different medium population realms (it may be quite different on other realms) and very few players actually try to sell crafted items on the ah. The main exception is gems. Since there is little competition it's easy to maintain buyout prices that include a 50% to 100%+ profit. I think that if everyone was to browse the ah for epic armors, spellthread and many other crafted items they would be suprised by the low number of sellers.

Gevlon said...

@evander: your points are interesting and the next post will be about them. Thanks for the idea

Gaming Diva said...

It is a welcome addition to the expansion and I'm looking forward to it. I was planning on switching to tailoring but when I heard the news about BOE items I decided to hold off for a little while longer.

I haven't found too many epic items on the AH and I look every day.

Esdras said...

Hmmm i agree with you on the gold selling part i do expect it to get more and more which is sad but i still think guild raiders should have first choice to use a BOE item before it gets sold.

Secondly i am thinking of dropping tailoring and keeping enchanting (DE FTW).