Greedy Goblin

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Why to teach?

I keep getting comments about the purpose of the blog. Why spending my time showing the people the goblin way? In the game it would decrease my gold/hour (as less M&S waste money on my tricks), in the real life I'm simply just wasting my time writing the blog as no reward comes from it. The value of teaching in WoW can be simply proved. In real life it's harder but can be done.

Let's see the complete opposite of the effect of education: a server full of M&S, you being the only goblin. It sound like heaven, 10K/hour and all benefits. Well, it's not.

The M&S, without external pressure buys only two kind things: "cool" and "fun" things.

"Cool" things are those that attract respect (of other M&S, as people with brains don't respect items). In WoW these items are mounts and epics. Since the mounts are vendor-sold and most epics are BoP, you can only sell BoE items. Oh wait! How do you get them? You are the only non-M&S so you can't form any raids that goes anywhere where worthy BoE, runed or crusader orbs drop.

"Fun" things are those that somehow make them laugh. Minipets, transform-to-pirate-fish, enlarging elixir and such silly nonsense are good candidates for this.

So you dominate a server where you can resell vendor-pets, craft engineering pets, flip world drop BoEs and deviate fish. Great perspective! If you think it's not true, try making money in a server with no decent raiding guild!

Who buys enchanting stuff, gems, glyphs, flasks, food, belt buckle? The average player, who is not an M&S. And also those M&S who were disrespected for not having them: "you don't have gems n00b /kick".

The M&S is not a customer at all. The controlled M&S is the perfect customer. He must get a profession bonus or get kicked. But he is too stupid to level his profession during leveling or do it now in any way that resembles economical. He will suck up all the overpriced mats from the AH.

To have a market of useful things you need non-M&S who value these things. By teaching the M&S to be average, and teaching the average to be goblins (who will yell on the M&S if he wants to raid without gems, enchants and consumables) you create the market.

Granted, some of your "students" will become competitors. In a perfect world it would be a problem. But we are living a very much not perfect world. If we rate the "everyone is an M&S" to 0, and a "server full of goblins" 100, the average server is somewhere in the 10-15 range. One more intelligent person creates bigger market by his work than you lose by his competition.

In the real world it's not so simple but the reason why I run this blog is the same: to increase the pie by increasing the number of those people who get used to the habit of trading in the game. I hope that their changed ingame behavior, the changed way of seeing the M&S will affect their opinion about the RL business and the RL M&S: the welfare-leeches.

PS: other topic, but read this.


Eaten by a Grue said...


I believe the reason you run this blog is partially for what you outline.

But I think the main reason you run this blog is you have good ideas and it gives you pleasure to share them.

Look, this is one of the pleasures in life, being respected by your peers. How else does anyone get esteem. Sure, you feel good about yourself when you do something productive, but in the end, without the accolades from peers, life would be very empty.

It is obvious you are not immune from this, and there is nothing wrong with it. So just fess up, you like running the blog and interacting with us all.

Mike said...

@Eaten by a Grue

Those "sharing ideas" and "respect" things sound awfully ungoblin-like.

Brian said...

The last couple posts have talked of expanding markets and unlimited moneymaking opportunity, and there was something that bothered me about that idea...and I finally figured out what it was.

The reason economies in the real world can expand is because of centralized banking, the fractional reserve system and a non-gold based currency. This allows money to be "created" out of thin air when more work is being done.

While the WoW economy is impressively like a real life economy, the major difference is that in WoW, the entire monetary supply originates with people getting money from the environment. Goblins don't add hardly any money to the economy, it's added by people doing daily quests or looting mobs and selling the vendor trash. The more Goblins you have refusing to do daily quests, the LESS gold will be in the server economy. Goblins need M&S to get the gold in the first place.

Anonymous said...


I've just found your blog a few weeks ago. What does M&S mean?

Geden said...


Im sorry, but a server does not _need_ M&S. Sure they can make life easier by making uninformed purchases which goblins cash in on, but remember that the goblin would always choose to do the activity which rewards the most for the least amount of work.
In the scenario you describe, the smart people would simply find the most effective way of extracting gold from the environment, and sites like this would be centered around efficient questing/vendortrash, rather than using professions and the AH.

Nils said...

This self delusion is almost sad.

Apart from that:
For a long time I have raided at top end, but financed this raiding just by questing/farming.

There I was: The M&S who was interested in buying glyphs.

comradevik said...

I think what he's talking about is that the amount of gold in the game is actually finite(I know, bear with me...). If there were no people doing dailies/other types of gold farming, then we would actually lose from the total amount of gold available(broker fees, etc).
Flame on.

Nils said...

By the way:
Commenters on this blog: Would you please define what a 'goblin' is, before you start to talk about it.

You constantly disagree with each other, because you define it differently, but don't tell anybody. Almost 100% of disagreement stems from the different understanding of the term. This is a M&S discussion.

"A goblin would do this"
"No, a goblin would do that"
"A server of golblin works"
"No, they did this, wouldn't work!"

comradevik said...


I think a lot of people here argue because they're from different servers. The conditions on each server is very different, therefore, the strategies each one of us uses is also very different.

Gevlon said...

@Brian: if less gold would be in the economy, prices would simply deflate (as they did in Q1-Q2 as people spent their gold farmed in BC on Mammoths).

There would still be rich and poor, simply the numbers would change.

Gevlon said...

@Nils: goblinism is pretty much this:

The people arguing about moneymaking strategies. They are ALL goblins as they want to make their own money, ignoring others.

I have to accept it's amusing that they are claiming that they are the only "true goblins".

Sean said...

I also responded to the blog spot that Gevlon linked at the bottom of his.

But basically I define the Goblin as someone who can adapt to the changing world and hence achieve success.

If success is found in embracing "social" and "coorporation" values then the Goblin will do it. If success neccessitates a narrow "self" view then the Goblin will also do it.

People arguing that their method is the best are not true Goblins. Because the best method is the one perfectly suited to the environment that they are operating in.

Sure, they are successful, but consider that their method may only work in their particular environment.

In essence, I'm arguing no one is a true 100% Goblin but many are partly Goblin to varying degress.

Anonymous said...

Does not the one that gives have to be grateful that the one that takes, takes?

someone told something like that.

will-to-live, will-to-power, will-to-create, maybe those are better reasons than this bunch of stupid reasons you gave in your post today. you feel you need to create something, I congratulate you, good job.

Anonymous said...

A:"Can you enchant my weapon ?"
B:"Which one do you want?"
A:"The blue"

Ah good old times.

Carra said...

He must get a profession bonus or get kicked. But he is too stupid to level his profession during leveling or do it now in any way that resembles economical. He will suck up all the overpriced mats from the AH.

I disagree. Gathering professions such as skinning or mining are best to level on your race to the maximum level. But you don't need any materials for those.

Crafting professions however are best left until maximum level. And it's an investment. Paying 2.000 or 3.000 gold to max your inscription doesn't make a difference if you'll end up making 5.000 gold a week.

Also, I love those fun items. It's great to have a cute bunny hopping after my cute gnome. If you have tens of thousands of gold, why not spend a fraction of that on some fun items? What else is the use of all that gold.

Iiene of Kul Tiras said...


The only time it's better to delay professions until max level is if this is your 4th alt, your mains are loaded with gold, and you're a pro at leveling.

Otherwise, the one gather, one craft combo makes leveling a lot smoother and cheaper.

It slows leveling down to stop to skin, mine, or herb. And you have to fend off monsters the same level as you for the latter 2. But the tradeoff is cheap armor upgrades, or some other super useful skill. This is a godsend if you're not loaded with gold. Or, of course, you can sell the gathered goods for much needed gold. It's win win to level professions with your character.

For example: Herbalism. That wonky HOT you get on a 2 minute CD may be so-so at level 80, but at level 20 it's a no-mana full heal you can instant cast for free every 2 minutes. Awesome for when that second add jumps you.

Armor you make yourself, armor kits, your first helm or shoulder pads, which you almost always get faster if you have the tradeskill, these all help you level.

In addition, you learn the skills you need to quickly switch to a 'raiding profession' when you need to.

Andrei said...

Speaking of teaching - what is M&S anyway?

Iiene of Kul Tiras said...

I was about to post about M&S anyway... so I'll field that.

M&S means "Morons and Slackers" These are people that can't raise a finger to help themselves, and as such... need "Friendly, helpful ppl" to boost them all the time.

It's not a ... respectful term. In fact, it's a term that raises the hackles of many people.

Anyway, I was trying to visualize what a 100% M&S server would be like by mentally isolating some of the M&S in my guild. There would still be Tanks, healers, and DPS... that would want to instances, but they would have no gems, no enchants, mo tradeskills of any kind for that matter.

Noone would even do so much as heroics because "We don't have the gear, and the heroics are too hard otherwise" Blizzard would have to respond by just selling epics for 2 gold on every vendor.

I would close my account and go play "Hello Kitty Adventure Island" instead.

Anonymous said...

I am not exactly sure but like my fellow goblins talk about M&S i figuered out for kinda means "the Morons and the Stupids"

Seth said...

Thank you for the Link, Gevlon.

As always Great Post

Iiene of Kul Tiras said...

Ooo! Ooo!

Another thing you would see on all M&S servers is "Designer outfits"

People would select gear that looks really good, and pay a premium for these items.

There would be fashion shows where even the vanity pet and mound would be coordinated to your outfit.

I... I could barely type that with a straight face.

Anonymous said...

I think "goblin" and see Richard Branson from Virgin. Others see it and think of Scrooge from "A Christmas Carol." While most here agree the "goblin way" is better than M&S,it's the social image of that goblin that people seem to struggle with.

Althalas said...

Gevlon, what is your opinion on art? I mean art that does nothing. Art that exists only to look at. Would this be considered something "cool" or "fun"? Is it neccissary in the world, or is art the realm of M&S?

Tonus said...

"what is M&S anyway?"

It refers to Morons and Slackers. The terms are used broadly. "Moron" can refer to someone who is an idiot, or someone who simply is ignorant or unaware of something. The latter person need not be a moron, but their actions will probably be wasteful or inefficient due to a lack of reliable information to act upon.

"Slacker" isn't as broad, as it covers people who are either lazy or prefer to avoid certain in-game activities for ones they enjoy more. Many morons are otherwise intelligent players who don't take the time to research information that would benefit them, even when it would not take long to do that research.

The terms are used pejoratively to refer to people who fit into those categories while complaining that they never have enough gold, or who ask for help at accumulating gold and then balk at the common-sense suggestions made to them. It is also used this way in reference to would-be market manipulators who flame other people who do a better job of manipulating the AH.

As for the definition of "goblin" or "goblinism," I see it as someone who tries to remove the emotional (often mistakenly referred to as "social") aspect from decision-making as much as possible, and tries to use research-based analysis in its place.

Markco said...

I believe that behind the hard gevlon shell is a person who enjoys wow and sharing his experiences with everyone.

Sean said...

As for the definition of "goblin" or "goblinism," I see it as someone who tries to remove the emotional (often mistakenly referred to as "social") aspect from decision-making as much as possible, and tries to use research-based analysis in its place.

In my post, I talked about the definition of a Goblin as someone who can adapt to the changing environment. However, I really like your definition, and it sums up a Goblin quite well.

Townes said...

While this blog isn't going to change my political philosophy, and while I still like things that make me laugh in-game - I have learned a lot about making money here. And never lack for imaginary gold as a result. I'm glad Ratshag linked it once long ago.

Klepsacovic said...

I want to say thank you for this bit here: "But he is too stupid to level his profession during leveling." It is a shame that so many people are stuck with the stupid idea that it is inefficient to level a profession while leveling. Sure, you can farm more gold per hour at max level, but if you're running past the herbs anyway, why not pick them up? They are about as close as you can get to free gold.

Unknown said...

Teaching like this makes perfect sense to me. If you have a fair number of goblins on a server, then most markets will be served by a goblin. That means that you'll have someone in most every market that is selling items at a reasonable markup, but not so much that other people are willing to sneak in and undersell them.

That means that I, as a goblin who sells alchemy and engineering items, for example, can benefit by having tailoring, blacksmithing, etc goblins on the server, providing me with easy access to other goods.

Sure, I could collect the mats, meet up with a guild crafter, etc. That's perfectly doable, and I do have to do that at time. I'd much rather see that someone is listing it for a nominal markup on the AH, and I can just get the item and go on with my life. My time is valuable.

Bristal said...

@Tonus - I agree, your post was extremely well put. I especially agree with the comparison of the word "emotional" with Gevlon's use of the word "social".

What would also happen in a M&S-free server is that as prices for goods deflate with less overall gold, the comparative value of crafting materials would rise as the supply fell, and at some point farming would become cost-effective for even Goblins, especially for those who find enjoyment in it, or those that get an alternate value like leveling.

Similarly the US agricultural system is highly dependent upon "illegal" immigrants who pick and process huge amounts of crops for very low wages, and are willing to move around frequently, following harvest seasons.

If the US succeeds in eliminating this population (I won't call them M&S as I feel that's pejorative, but you get the comparison), wages would have to rise to entice our own labor force who would demand & get better working conditions and health benefits.

BUT, since money continues to be created out of thin air IRL, that cost would of course be passed to the consumer.

Ten bucks for a head of lettuce, anyone?

Backthief said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Backthief said...

Gev, how happy are you now knowing you can be a TRUE GOBLIN on Cataclysm? :)

Stupid Mage said...

The gold you get from picking an herb or mining a node is faster to get than the silver from anything you will kill.

Rob Dejournett said...


I dont' disagree at all that gathering is free money, but the opportunity cost exsts when you are starting a profession from scratch and are not char level 1. For example DKs are perfect, you must spend many hours grinding mining or whatever in the old zones. does depend. If you are in a rush to get to end game, it maybe faster to get to 80, get your flyer, then switch profs. When flyers were only available at 70 I used to wait until 70 to level my gathering profs from 300 to 375, for the purpose of speed, it was far faster to fly around and gather it than it was to do it on the ground.