Here is my gold making 101 introduction post. This is a bit of a shift from my regularly scheduled content, but as was eloquently stated in a comment in my last post, “as a raider I need to fund my habit” :)
These posts will be tagged and categorized separately from the regular nonsense firehose aimed at your teacup browsers, and will endeavor to give you the tools you need to make the money you need without resorting to farming or dailies. Without any further ado:
Most players make money by farming (dual gathering for the win!) and dailies. If you want to move away from this, you need to have tools and skills (both character and player) they don’t. The returns start off slower than dailies, but you only have to do the work once, and then your business will run itself.
Let’s start with the core of things: where does this money come from? A real life principle at work here is called “value-add”. All strategies for making money without farming it involve adding value to something. Whether you’re brokering, engaging in cross faction arbitrage, or producing goods, you have to add value to make non-accidental amounts of money.
- Brokerage: you add value by assuming risk and holding stock, hoping for the price to go up
- Cross faction arbitrage: you pay the neutral AH fee (or risk poachers) and do the legwork in moving goods
- Producing goods: you leveled the skill and spent the time crafting
Most people try all of these when going into business. They can all make money, and each will have its own guide. The trick is determining which markets you can get into to make money. To do this, you need information not easily available through the default interface. Specifically, you need price info. That leads me nicely into my next section.
These are a huge part of what differentiates evolved traders from our less evolved grinding cousins. While we both have a motorcycle, they have callouses on their steady shot finger (and a bit of an eye twitch if they’re an engineer). Tools give us information we need, and perform repetitive tasks for us. I will make more gold per hour than the smartest person in the world if I have auctioneer and he doesn’t. God help us all if he ever figures out where to get it.
Let’s start with Auctioneer since I brought it up. This is going to be a guide in and of itself, but to begin, just go install it. Now that it’s up, click on the blue “>>” on the top of your new auction interface, click the annoying confirmation window, then click the “>>” again. Go have lunch. When you come back, if you didn’t get disconnected from the massive stream of data WOW just puked all over your hard drive, you now have a recent snapshot of how much every single thing costs in the AH.
Auctioneer is a vastly complex tool that can do many things, however many of them require knowledge of historical prices. Make a point of scanning at least once a day. My full auctioneer guide will contain info about how to configure auctioneer to do things for you, but this is just a preview.
Another tool you must get is some sort of mail collection addon. It’s nice to manually collect AH mail while you’re just getting the feel for things, but believe you me, it gets out of hand quickly. Postal is my favorite, but anything that will empty your box and save your alts is fine.
The next addon you want is called Lilsparky’s workshop. When you open a trade skill, this can be configured (another post will show you how) to show you your cost and the approximate market price for stuff you can make.
Another important tool you need: an alt. Make a level 1 (or better, a DK if you don’t use one already), and run him to a city. Don’t tell your friends his name, and never ever use him for anything but posting auctions. Tux optional. I always have a blast clicking “compare achievements” then “stats” on obvious bank and auction alts to see how much money my fellow traders make.
This is not a comprehensive list, but that would be too much for one post. My next post will go over cross faction arbitrage. Have a good weekend!
ps. I am hoping to have the next podcast recorded this weekend, but I will not talk much about economics in that.