Greedy Goblin

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Morons of the week 2

I got this mail without screenshot, so I can't verify it. However it's so hilarious and also typical "I'll show you" M&S behavior that I must post it:

I am on my enchanting/tailoring priest, standing in Orgrimmar and making items to sell at the AH. Out of nowhere this level 80 warlock, someone who I've never seen before, runs up to me and tells me to link my enchanting. I'm not sure how he knew I was an enchanter (probably just assumed I was, given that I was a priest), but I linked my enchanting to him. I continue making bags for two minutes while he just stands there, staring. Then he sends me another whisper, asking for me to do Enchant Boots - Greater Fortitude for him. Now here is when things get wacky.

I tell him that I'd be glad to do the enchant for him, provided his materials and that he pay my standard, flat 12g fee. He replies that he doesn't have the materials, and asks if I can give him the enchant using my own materials. I tell him I can do so, but it'd cost 45g (average market price for the mats is 33g).

He suddenly explodes into the looniest rant I have ever seen. He declares that I am ripping him off, that the mats sell for only 20g (yeah, right) and that he'll log into his main and make himself a scroll of the enchant AND then put up many of the scrolls on the auction house for 20g each to, quote, 'show you'.

I didn't say anything during his rant. When he finished, I gave the following response: 'Um...okay'. He then logged out, switching to his main. I immediately ran to the AH and checked the prices of the Lesser Cosmic Essence. It was going for standard market price, pretty much exactly the price I had told him it would be. I bought all of the essences and flipped them for double the price, guessing that he'd be by any second now to buy them. (The average market price for three essences--needed for one enchant--is a little over 17g. After my price-doubling, it was 34g in essences alone. Remember that he wants to sell his enchant scrolls for 20g for some inane reason.)

Guess what. A few moments later, he buys out ALL of the Lesser Cosmic Essences I just reposted. Then he proceeds to put up finished Scrolls of Enchant Boots - Greater Fortitude on the AH. The average price for a scroll of this enchant is 56g. He threw up a little over ten scrolls on the AH, all for 20g each. I bought all of his 20g scrolls and immediately relisted them at 56g each. I then advertised them in trade. 2 hours later, all of the scrolls have sold. I have made a total of 462g off of this moron, and he lost an untold amount of gold by selling his enchants for way under material cost...all because he was angered by my 12g fee.

I usually hate idiots, but I would love to have more people like this guy on my server--all of my alts would be gold-capped in no time, ha!

Cheers, Matthew

Another day, another wannabe glyph monopolist. I can't imagine how could they survive the MMO-champion initiated glyphmaker swarm:


pocketheal said...

He might have been using the addon Gnomish Yellow Pages to determine that you were an enchanter. It's a nifty addon that saves all the professions that are linked in any chat frames and shows who has the profession, the skill level, and if he/she is online.

Anyways that's not my main point in posting. The screen shot referring to the "m & s" that bought out all those glyphs is what i was really interested in. I would never buy out auctions that were above 2g. But when carpet bombers go lower that 2g sometimes down to 20s ish on glyphs that i know are worth more is it a viable strategy to buy them out and repost later when the price rises again? Thanks in advance. Hope i'm not another "m & s" to post about.

Matthew said...


Concerning your glyph question, I think the answer would be pretty hard to determine. You'd really just have to use your best judgment on a case-by-case basis. Sometimes I definitely think that flipping underpriced crafted items is a good idea, but I must admit that I rarely do this. The only items that I flip with high frequency are raw materials--herbs, cloth, and whatnot.

The only time I would risk flipping an underpriced crafted item is if either I know that the price is just absolutely retarded (12g for an item that almost always sells for 200g, for example) OR if I know that the market price for the materials required to craft said item are high in price, making the undercutter's price extremely cost-inefficient.

N said...

I bought 10 Glyph of Holy Light the other day, because they were very cheap (less than mats!) and I use them often. Not long after, I get a whisper from the seller making fun of me for trying to resell the glyphs, saying that he'd just keep posting more. I mentally facepalmed at the whisper. Wish I'd SSed it.

Not everyone is as goblinish as they'd like to think they are. That guy buying out glyphs might just be excited to get a bunch of cheap glyphs.

Iiene of Kul Tiras said...

Heh. The first story is funny. Almost assuredly bullshit... but funny. Come on. If a guy can make enchant scrolls, he can get enchanting mats... No one that is THIS stupid would have an Enchanter AND a Scribe AND act like this.

Second one. No context to judge with. Knowing your audience... the poster is probably a low posting retard that posted well below the potential sell point. or... the buyer could be an idiot. Or... it could be totally staged. No way to know.

This is the best you can do? Where the hell is the comprehensive analysis on the current glyph issue? You're supposed to be a master at that.

Matthew said...


I sent in the first story. It was intended purely for Gevlon to read. I didn't think for a moment that it'd be put on the weekly Morons post, especially given that I didn't take screenshots.

I can assure you that it is true, however. The guy was extremely odd. I couldn't believe it myself, and like I said in the email, nothing quite this bizarre has ever happened to me in my years of playing WoW since day 1. I wish it did, though. That was a really easy 400+ gold.

Nees said...

@Nick: exactly. Same thing happened to me, I asked the player if he wanted me to craft some more of the glyphs he bought. And guess what, I immediately sold him another 15 glyphs because of that. Not everyone buying loads of glyphs is trying to become a monopolist, they just might be great customers :)

Anonymous said...

Haha gevlon, your pretty much a morhon for not knowing that you can see someone's proffesions by achievements :"). Ahwell... cant all be perfect.

Breevok said...

@ previous anonymous

Erm perhaps you should learn to stop being a morhon (sic) yourself - because Gevlon just quoted the mail from Matthew. As you said "Ahwell... cant all be perfect."

Anonymous said...

lol, nice one dude!

Anonymous said...


I had a really good example of this after they added Books of Glyph Mastery to the game. I had had one drop while leveling my warrior and went to place it on the AH. The current price was 1.5k each (It's crashed a lot since then, obviously.) However, someone had put one up for 15 gold. I hit buyout on that as fast as I could and immediately relisted it. I made nearly 1.5k gold off of that. I was quite happy.

@Liene: Your whiny, nitpicky trolling is getting kind of boring. If you hate Gevlon so much, why don't you go read another blog instead wasting your time insulting him and trying to explain why everything he says is wrong?

Wooly said...

I think I can buy that first story. The amount of dumb loudmouth "I'll show you" idiots in wow is so big that I hope for the sake of mankind it's not a true reflection of the average kids these days (assuming it's only kids). This kid might even have realized he was losing money, but would never admit to it (reminds me of a post of a few days ago), he had to prove a point against (literally) all cost now. I'm imagining him sitting at his desk like that german rage-kid video after he noticed your action. Nothing makes people more vulnerable for failure then their own stupid ego's :)

George said...

I sent the second screenshot. The other guy is a glyph seller @Ursin-US, and he is trying to "fix" the AH by buying cheaper glyphs and selling them for 50g.

My production costs are under 3g, so 3g is the "break even" that I would not buy. Sure, there are some glyphs that were sold for just a little profit but there's one @9g and some @5g.

Profit is profit. And I take note of the glyphs bought and just post more for a 10c less what he posted.

Hey. A sell is a sell. When you have over 1200 glyphs listed at the AH, if you sell each one for 3g profit, 3.6k in one day. And since these guys are not customers, but instead, competitors, rest assured they will get p*ssed off and leave.

Cheers for the Goblin way.

Grin'dal said...


You overestimatin' de way people is! Jus' 'cause somebody got de tools don't mean he got de brains - but he can certainly be a jerk if 'e wanna! It don't take a genius to get from Journeyman ta Grand Master in Scribin' or Enchantin', let alone both!

You so cute when ya bein' de way you is, though!

Unknown said...

The first moron was a lot of fun. It's a pity he/she didn't take a screenshot.

@Gevlon: Could you make a Jewelcrafting guide soon? I want to know if it's as profitable as Inscription, and how to make money of it (yeah I'm sure I'm the only retard that can't make money out of JC).

Anonymous said...


I'll write you a little mini-guide on jewelcrafting. What you gotta do is:

1. Do the JC daily every day to get tokens.

2. If you find cheap titanium ore or powder, buy it.

3. Buy epic gem cuts. The most popular ones are good sellers, but those that are really good for only a few classes/specs is what really can make money. Spell pen and spell pen/spell power have been great winners for me.

4. Buy uncut epic gems on the AH. Prices may vary depending on your server. I have a max price of 110-150g depending on colour.

5. List your gems for 12 hours because of the high deposit. List 2-3 at a time of each cut, and 4-5 of the most popular ones. List them in the afternoon, between 2 and 6 works great for me. You might consider canceling and undercutting a few hours after you posted. Quick Auctions 2 is great for this, just make one group for each gem colour.

6. ????

7. Profit.

I make about 1-2k a day with this method, but I have more than 30 cuts, which means 120+ days of doing dailies or or 40-50k in titanium powder with my server's prices.

Belsebub said...

It's pretty similar to Inscription really, get as many glyphs (or in this case cuts) and make all that are profitable and stock up on them once they sell. I try to keep between 1 and 3 of each gem I can make on me and post them as long as they sell for more than a raw gem. Your profit will rise as you get more cuts so it's just to keep going.

Remember to mainly post in the evenings and never cancel and repost during the day when very few people are online.

Anonymous said...

"Where the hell is the comprehensive analysis on the current glyph issue? You're supposed to be a master at that."

You should know Gevlon well enough by now that he runs his blog how he wished. Not to entertain you.

Glyphs haven't changed, what would be remotely intresting to write about? A bunch of mmo champion readers jumped on the bandwagon. Big whoop, he already posted how to handle it. Adapt.


Unknown said...

@Anonymus and Belsebub:

Thank you very much guys!

I'll do that. Thanks for your help =)

Iiene of Kul Tiras said...

Hey, I don't want you guys to get the wrong impression, here.

I love Gevlon! It takes ginormous stones to just stand up and put out the opinions he does.

And... I think he's at least 80% right. The human race is JACKED with morons and slackers. However, it is the reason for the infestation I have differences with. I'm not going to go into that here, because this isn't the proper venue.


It's Iiene, not Liene. There is no L. It's a common mistake, I'm not going to hold it against you.

Ah, so that's the deal with the screenshot. Ok, that makes sense. However, that DOES NOT MAKE this guy a moron. Sure, he made a mistake... it's a mistake to think you can 'fix' the glyphs that way. But mistakes are how we learn. You show me a man who's never made a mistake, and I'll show you a man who lives in his parent's basement.

You risk... you make mistakes... and in so doing, you learn. NO ONE IS EVER A MORON FOR DOING THAT.

Morons are people that do it 5 times in a row. Or just blindly follow the advice of others without analysis.

It's not Gevlon I have issue with. It's you people that just follow, never think. And I see a lot of that.

I don't think for a second that Gevlon thinks I'm a threat to him in any way. Or that he cares what I think. I'm not talking to Gevlon when I dis his material... I'm talking to the people reading the blog.

Anonymous said...

I agree on this one with Iiene of Kul Tiras and wonder how come Gevlon makes the statement of moron when in the past he looks differently at such a situation:

Deep undercutter vs monopolist: Undercutter lists glyphs at "normal price" + 20-30%, as he find no cheap glyphs. Monopolist buys them up, undercutter happy. Monopolist sells high, happy too. Prices slowly climb up as the auctioneer "normal price" includes the monopolist's price. Peaceful coexistence, everyone sell, customers suck.

So the only way that the screenshot makes him a moron is when the seller relists new ones after they are sold and the guy keeps buying them without ever selling 1 glyph at his 50g-price.

Furthermore, after reading the comments; if someone keeps track of his glyphs in such a way that he can relist new ones faster than the monopolist can sell them at 50g, then he should better be a normal undercutter instead of a gevlon wanna-be. After all, the only reason gevlon goes deep-undercutting is to avoid being undercut himself so that he can stay away from the ah for 48hours...

Before the mmo-champion post, flipping glyphs was profitable on my server. So either morons can earn gold or it's not so moronic.

Gnome of Zurich said...

last anonymous is right -- you can make plenty of money manipulating markets. The last sentence is key: "Before the mmo-champion post, flipping glyphs was profitable on my server."

When there are only a few mass producers or farmers of an item relative to the market, one can often adjust their pricing for a profit. This implies that they could have done so themselves.

Unfortunately, when there are too many producers, you have a supply glut, and the only thing a manipulator can profitably do is speculate that some will eventually go away, and so buy up some stock while things are cheap to sell later. I do that and it often works. Once in a while I get burned, and end up selling at a loss.

Gevlon's key insight is that you can make pretty good gold/hr even in fairly heavy competition if you automate sufficiently and use the correct strategy, as long as you can produce your goods at least as cheaply as your competitors.

The basic points of the overall strategy are a low price point at which you make very little (to drive out any competitors who are not similarly automated or have good low price suppliers), and a high (fallback) price point which is *just* low enough so as not to encourage a random goblin who doesn't know the glyph market to think "I need to get into the glyph market". So if there is enough competition that you can't sell a lot of glyphs, you drive the price down until enough weaker competitors drop out that demand matches supply again. Then you bring it back up and fall down to the new market equilibrium. People who got driven out don't come back unless the market looks particularly juicy, which your carefully set fallback price is designed to have not happen.

This should work even with all the new entrants to inscription, and with few exceptions it will be the new guys getting driven out because they don't have the connections, automation and market knowledge.

The one situation that kills an industrial goblin scheme is when too many people choose your niche as a profession leveling item, spilling supply on the market all out of proportion to demand with no profit motive at all. Then you really can't make any money and are in the same position as a manipulator (For people like me, this is more accurate than monopolist, I don't care if you sell stuff, as long as I make money flipping).

John Dawson said...

Gevlon often makes fun of glyph monopolists who try to rig market prices to be artificially high. However, I have a monopolist tactic I've been using on my server that seems to be effective. I haven't seen it written about elsewhere. Here it is.

Craft or buy 20 of as many hot-selling glyphs as you can stomach. Make an alt whose only purpose is to list 20 1-stacks of each of these glyphs at 50g each, and relist them every 48 hours when they expire. Use Auctioneer Batch Post to list them. Why do this? Three reasons.

First, you will be the seller of last resort for these glyphs. I find that I sell about 400g worth of these glyphs per week. So first and foremost, this strategy is directly profitable.

Second, the presence of lots of high prices for these glyphs convinces buyers that a high price is acceptable. I won't go into the behavioral economics of this here, but read "Predictably Irrational" by Dan Ariely for more details. See the chapter where he talks about pink diamonds.

Third, and most important, it skews the average market prices to Auctioneer. The people that bring glyph prices down are the ones that use Auctioneer, not the Quick Auctions folks who undercut by a silver. This strategy fools Auctioneer into thinking the market price is higher. Then, when the Auctioneer-based sellers post their glyphs, they tend to post higher prices.

I tried this out on a lark about two months ago. I didn't know if it would work. I was excited to try out some SCIENCE (tm). It worked spectacularly well, well beyond my expectations. I tried this with a small set (about 30 or so) of glyphs. About 20 of the glyphs were hot sellers that tended to have the best prices. About 10 of them were commodity glyphs that tended to have low prices. After posting 20 single listings of each glyph at 50g each, almost all 30 glyphs went to the top of the market prices, AND STAYED THERE, even after days and weeks.

So here's how I really reaped the profit from this strategy: On my main glyph selling alts, I simply listed all these 30 glyphs. The listing prices were way higher than they had been, and they stayed that way. This strategy therefore benefitted the other glyph sellers as well, but that's fine by me. I only cared that it made me much more money.

I encourage people to try this on their server and post their results. It's an easy experiment to run.

Unknown said...

People try to fix prices often on my server, when I catch them I simply send them a whisper and ask if they need more, usually in broken english to avoid any conversation. "You like [glyph of ....] I sell for best price as many as you need" And simply list 10 more for the deeper under cut price until they give up, If I am making 1g off each so be it, the quicker you force someone out of the market the quicker you can raise your prices.

Gnome of Zurich said...

I'm not sure I understand william.

If someone is trying to fix prices, I'm not sure why you need to drive them out of the market in order to raise prices. They are already raising the price. Why not just undercut them normally (60s, 5%, 1s, 1c whatever your normal strategy is), or use your fallback price if they list higher than that.

Price fixers are easy to live with, unless they also aggressive undercut you when you come back into the market.

The people you want to drive out are the people who are willing to sell more cheaply than you would ideally sell. A price fixer thinks even your carefully chosen price is too low. So let him speculate. If he's right, your stuff still sells at your chosen price *and* he makes money selling some glyphs higher.

Plus, if you ever want to dump some inventory, a fixer in your market is guaranteed to buy it up if you dump it low (even if it's still profitable to you) -- *unless* you dump so much low priced stuff that he starts to worry about the market and goes away. Then you no longer have somebody who will do that.

I do not understand the irrational hatred of price fixers from some corners of this commentariat. Of course, those who try to tell you how to run your business are annoying morons, but those who simply buy up auctions and sell in their own way are either losing money (much of it to you since they are buying your auctions) or capturing money from consumers that you left on the table by pricing suboptimally without actually hurting you at all (if anything helping, since *your* low priced auctions sell a bit faster).

A price fixer doesn't hurt you until (if they are stupid) they send you annoying emails.

Daniel Chapman said...

I still make money with the glyph monopoly.

The people who undercut and overproduce glyphs on my market are slow at relisting some popular glyphs.

When they start selling for under 3g, I relist them for ridiculously high 50g-75g. I sell one, I make back my money for the entire lots of them... but that's only part of the story.

If I bought 12 for 3g, sell 1 for 75g, then you might thing I made 36g profit, but you'd be wrong. In turn, I then sell the remaining 11 glyphs for anywhere from 10g all the ways down to 1g.

What, you mean I sell them for less than I bought them for? Why, yes, I do. I don't want to, of course, but even if I sold all of them but the one for 1g, I spent 36, brought in 86, total profit is 50g.

It's all about averages. Sometimes I'm dumb and I buy 10 glyphs that I end up never selling, but I'm good enough that I usually earn money in the long run.

The glyph mass producers may claim that they're goblins, but they're just another breed of M&S. The sheep.

I want to make a blog post saying "Why you're not Gevlon." Too many of them send me these angry whispers about their prices being lowered and point me to this blog, others send me "ha ha, you idiot, you bought me out, but I can make new ones." And I think, "Well, while you whispered me, I just sold one for 75g, so go ahead and make more, I don't need to buy anymore."

I don't even need to make my own glyphs anymore, I just buy out the people who think that they're being smart in the sub-3g range.