WoW Economy Weekly Wrap-Up: Battle For Azeroth Alpha, Auction House Flipping, Pet Charms & Powerleveling



WoW Economy Weekly Wrap-Up
Welcome to the twenty fourth edition of the WoW Economy Weekly Wrap-up!

If you’re new to this series or want to re-visit past posts, you can check out the previous articles right here on wowhead.com

My name is Gumdrops and I’m the lead moderator for the /r/woweconomy subreddit and the accompanying Discord server. I am also the Support Manager & User Evangelist for TradeSkillMaster, the Auction House addon suite for World of Warcraft. I hope to cover and showcase some of the interesting topics, discussions, content and guides that have been going on over the last week in the gold making community. Some that you might have missed as a veteran gold maker, or you might be interested in checking out for the first time as a new or aspiring ‘goblin’.

The format will not be that of a traditional guide, but links to further reading with commentary and opinions of my own. I will be looking at the bigger picture, the decision making and thought processes in being a gold maker – rather than a step by step instructional list. As the saying goes, “give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”.

This past week saw the official launch of the Battle for Azeroth Alpha test, notably this round would be classified as the Friends & Family stage – some high profile streamers and community figures have been invited and are sharing their early experiences of the new expansion. There’s a zone per faction available to quest through, plus two dungeons to playtest – along with all of the class and spec changes.

Personally I have not been invited (yet!) but I will be covering as much as I can regarding any profession system updates and general economic changes.

The topic of bags has been circling the community again, the two new bags datamined so far could have some impact on the Hexweave market, as /u/SubjectiveJack outlined:

Looks like the popular garrison gold making method through Hexweave Bags is going to see a decline in profitability with the new 32 slot bag announced for BfA. We can presume that in order to craft the Embroidered Deep Sea Bag, Tailoring will have to be maxed and it might take some time for people to level it up. The new bags will probably not flood the markets very quickly and the Hexweave Bag will still be popular and profitable at the beginning of the new expansion. So use your Tailoring garrison empire to the fullest while it still lasts.

There is also the Deep Sea Bag which is a 30 slot bag, matching the capacity of the Hexweave bags. Materials required to craft both of these bags have not been confirmed at this time, so it’s still a little early to do anything but speculate according to /u/BaltazarDZ:

It’s actually pretty hard to speculate at this point without knowing how hard will the materials be to obtain for the new bag. The strength of the Hexweave is it’s relatively easy to upkeep resources even across expansions due to Garrison. There will be changes but it’s too early to tell.

This is an important aspect of the Hexweave bag market, it’s not something that requires an indefinite amount of farming or purchasing of materials. A Tailor can sustain themselves with their own materials without any outside forces or players, so it will most likely come down to how much each player values their time. The age-old ‘farmed items are free’ fallacy aka ignoring ‘Opportunity Cost’ will come in to play here no doubt, some goblins will check off a sale of one bag as 100% profit since they paid no gold for the items that went in to it.

/u/Saravat comments on the Hexweave longevity:

Hexweave may drop somewhat in profitability, but it’s going to take awhile, and I’d bet that they’ll be like netherweave bags were – they’ll be with us, and reasonably profitable, for a long time. As much as I disliked many aspects of garrisons, I don’t see myself walking away from hexweave bags any time soon!

What about some other early-expansion opportunities? New patches and expansions are often the best time to make gold as a goblin. Getting in to new and emerging markets early tends to net the most gold.

/u/Jesus_Phish covers some of the fundamental opportunities:

  • New materials will sell for a bomb as people try get them to level profs
  • Crafted gear from professions will sell as people want to get the highest ilvl they can before raids kick in. You’ll often find that some professions can make BiS items – see the Legion necklaces at the launch of Legion.
  • When the raids kick in, consumables see a sharp rise in price. Materials for consumables will go up as well, herbs and cooking mats etc.

/u/_Motoko points out that guilds are getting very rich in Legion with the prevalence of raid boosting:

Raiders are making millions boosting M+ this expac. Most of them will easily drop tens of thousands on entry level crafted gear.

I am pretty sure I read that profession levels are still a thing in BFA. I made millions rushing the LW quests to unlock the full crafted set which I made a few million off of. I was getting so much gold it made me lazy. I could’ve done BS or tailoring as well and doubled my gold. Also made a boatload off obliterium as well at the start of the expac. Perhaps we will see something like that again.

While people generally suggest mining and herbalism I find it was much more profitable to pay extravagant prices for leathers/ore and make gear.

One of the best things to set yourself apart from the competition is be 100% up-to-date on upcoming and planned changes for the BfA Expansion, especially in the form of professions. If you’re reading this right now then you’re already one step ahead of someone who isn’t watching all the info coming out of the datamining and Alpha testing. Wowhead.com’s site director Perculia actually put together a document which aims to cover all the new profession items as they get discovered or added to the BfA client, you can check that out here.

Discussion Point
Did you get in to the Alpha? Who have you been watching on Twitch or Youtube for your insight in to the Alpha?

This week /u/Creepygmee documented some of their tips and tricks along with a journey to pre-purchasing the Battle for Azeroth with their gold-making strategy of buying and selling raid BoE gear. Some very interesting insights that can be valuable to new goblins, and lessons can be carried forward in to the next expansion too.

Please note this IS a very risky market, and that I play on a “quite” high-pop PvE realm, so I have a lot of potential buyers, and the supply is totally RNG’d

First of all, thank you all for sharing your experiences about goblining, you helped me a lot at the beginning of my goblin journey ! I thought it would be fair to share my own experience now !

As you can see on this image I started seeing serious income when I started flipping Antorus BOEs (right before purchasing my 1st token, 250k on EU at that time) I didn’t have a lot of gold at that time but I sniped a 940 BOE for a low price (which was quite a big amount for a single investment for me at that time) and I decided to give it a try, telling myself “If I can’t manage to sell it, I stop playing WoW” – little did I know that I just stepped into the most profitable market of the game (in my current opinion lol).

As you can see here I sold around 30 ilvl930+ BOEs in the last 3 weeks ! The profit range goes from 10k to 800k per item..!

Let me explain you the tips I would have loved to know when I started :

  • Leather is used by 4 classes : DH, drood, monk and rogue ! So you have more potential buyers, at least in terms of classes
  • BUT the most played classes are Plate wearers (on my realm, you might want to check if it’s the same on yours) so prices tend to be higher, compared to same ilvl of other armor types, and they actually sell @ that higher price
  • Mail doesn’t sell. Well, it actually does sell, but the market is often flooded because there is more supply than demand, So I wouldn’t bother buying lower than ilvl960, maybe if it’s @30%RegionMV, but keep in mind it might sell VERY slowly
  • I don’t have specific comment about cloth, but I don’t want to seem racist against cloth-wearers if I don’t mention them…

Bonus stats are really strange when selling : I posted a 960 standard BOE for 1 copper less than the same BOE with Avoidance, mine sold, the avoidance one is still on the AH… I can’t explain this to you… (keep in mind that a Bonus is worth 30-50k, even more on 970+ BOEs, so post accordingly) *Avoidance on cloth and mail is pretty much useless until ilvl950, so people won’t pay more for yours rather than a standard one, but if you get it on a ilvl970… Oh dear…
Speed is also very valuable on lower ilvl BOEs, because they are mainly used for farming, so farming goblins will pay a premium for this.

Let’s say you bought a ilvl960 BOE for 200k, and it’s the only one with that ilvl on the market at that time, so you post it @400K. RNJesus could be against you and the next day a random dude posts the same BOE for 230K. You have a couple of solutions :

  1. You post it @229K and tell yourself that 20K profit is better than nothing (best solution for goblins without a lot of gold)
  2. You wait for theirs to sell (but keep in mind that a goblin might buy it, and repost right under yours, which in the end is better, as the price won’t fall too quick, as you undercut each other by 1 copper every time)
  3. to more players…

I would prefer losing 10K when reselling a 930- BOE, so I can invest that money back, rather than waiting for 2 others to sell, which will take longer and longer, as the expansion comes to an end…

Never underestimate the power of the /2 ! I usually post something like : “WTS –armor type– –ilvl– –link the item–, /w me for more info !” I sell around 20% of my items with trade chat (don’t tell your price in the /2, let the potential buyers come to you !) I usually propose 5% less than my AH price (AH cut) and I then see if they try do lower my price, and if I’m happy with selling faster for less, or if I prefer to sell slower for more ! (I have macro for kiddos who /w me “1 gold” saying that the price for kiddos is on the AH (you know, just in case they actually are interested in buying), and I then add them to my VERY LONG ignore list)

My best advice for the ones who read until the end shhhhhh, don’t highlight it, the other ones don’t deserve to know it You will find the best deals during the night, as people post it when they come back from raiding, so check the AH around midnight on raid days and weekend. Sorry for the ones who have to wake up early, you might miss some good deals during your sleep 😛

Column regular /u/Mochaboys shares some of their insight as a follow up:

At least on my server, cloth piece rate of consumption has increased since the last dip. It wasn’t clear to me why until I saw a 110 Nightborne Mage standing right next to me in the AH wearing nothing but AH gear (crafted legendaries and high ilvl BoEs). By my count he was wearing upwards of 3 million gold in BoEs.

At the start of Antorus – Leather was selling insanely well. It’s died down a bit but it’s still in pretty solid demand.

As for pricing – folks have to remember that their main competition is ilvl 885 crafted gear, so when you’re figuring out how much to price that 930 for ask yourself, is there a crafted Epic at the same price point? Even still – crafted epics take BoS or PS to upgrade which if someone is outfitting a twink or boosted character – they will have next to no supply of it so they’ll pay a premium for something they can equip right away.

But yeah – my sale rates track with your report…plate sells at a premium, cloth is now in short supply on my server, leather still selling well, and mail always takes the longest to sell.

That point about not locking up capital is such good advice. There’s a guy on my server I tried to do a deal with for a 1.2m piece. I was offering 1.5m in gold and trades and he passed. That was maybe a couple weeks after Antorus dropped. He STILL has that piece on the market and I’ve easily sold twice that amount in that same time frame. So don’t be afraid to part with something for a 20 or 30k profit…just think how many damn Nightborne Delicacies or Quick Lightsphene’s you’d have to sell to match that profit.

Also if you’re in a race to the bottom with someone else – don’t be afraid to keep nudging them then buy them out once it gets low enough. I did that twice today and sold off both pieces already 😀

Auction House Flipping, particularly high-end items like raid BoEs, mounts and pets can be the most lucrative thing you can do to make gold. It can also generate the most amount of gold with the least time spent – you’re not out farming materials or transmog. You’re in and out, a quick purchase and a quick relisting. The lessons provided by /u/Creepygmee and /u/Mochaboys aren’t just specific to Legion, but can and should be applied to future expansions.

Discussion Point
What are your plans for the BoE market as Legion starts to wind down? How much gold have you made with BoEs? Will you look to get involved in this market now or in the future?

Trusted Goblin Kurraga put together a great post for the community that goes in to detail on how to make gold with Pet Charms, without needing to do any pet battles.

Acquiring Pet Charms
Order Hall Missions
This is the most efficient way. If you have powerful argus equipped order halls yiu shouldn’t have any problem 200%ing these. You’ll get 25 total per mission (5 base + 20 with bonus, so not very good if you miss). A lot of people doing order halls just ignore these, but if you have some spare followers after sending out all the other missions you want to do definitely consider sending out one of these.

Pet battle WQs
This method is a bit trickier if you aren’t pet battling, but if you habe the right order hall perk (eg. Mage or Death Knight) to complete free WQs, high pet charm WQs are worth considering. You can get up to 20 charms for 1 WQ so if there aren’t any good ones up to bomb you can consider doing one of those.

Boon of the Zookeper
The final way to get some pet charms without pet battling is to get the Zookeeper enchant (bought from the pet supply store in Dalaran, near where you teleport into Dal) on your shoulder, works like every other shoulder enchant but you get let supplies instead. Notably you get 6-10 pet charms per bag and the rest is mostly garbage if you aren’t pet battling. Obvious doenside to this is that you can’t use the Bloodhunter or Primal Sargerite enchant, but it’s a solid alternative to those if you aren’t revered with Wardens or Army of the Light yet.

Spending Pet Charms
Vendor pets/toys
The main way to spend pet charms would be to buy the pets and toys from the pet vendors in Dalaran (there are 2 you can buy stuff from), there are various toys and pets you can get for 50/100/200 pet charms. The best things to get for gold per pet charm are typically going to be the Toys (Indestructible Bone and Spirit Wand) and and 50 charm pets, I’d avoid the 200 pet charm pets because they usually go for way less than the other ones. I’ve seen Lost Netherpups (200 PC) going for less than the Indestructible Bone (50 PC) for example.

Don’t get the pet mirrors because those are BoP (unless you want them for yourself of course).

Usually you can get 70-150g or so per pet charm from at last something. I try to get at least 100g from them but if you have a ton you might end up flooding the market and stuggle to move everything at a good price.

Boosting Pets
The other way to use pet charms is to get Ultimate Battle Training Stones and boost pets to level 25. To use the stone in case you don’t know: learn a pet you want to boost, open your pet journal, find the pet and summon it, right click the stone and click on the pet which should be hanging out next to you, then go ahead and cage it again (right click in pet journal > put in cage).

One way to do it is to charge people for boosting services, where you get them to trade you a pet, you learn it, boost it then trade it back and they pay you for it (usually around 2500-5000g). This isn’t the best way to get gold because people don’t usually pay a lot to boost pets but it can be nice if you want more immediate gold.

Another way to use pet boosts is to get your own pets and boost to sell the level 25 versions. Works great if there isn’t any competition for a level 25 version of a pet you’re trying to sell so you can charge whatever you want for them. For example you might have engineering and make Mechamical Pandaren Dragonlings for 2000g and sell for 6000g, you could expand your market by making some of them level 25 and selling them for 15k+ expanding your market (selling to both people who want level 1s and who want level 25s). More expensive pets can demand a larger premium for boosting to level 25 so it’s something to consider if you’re in the business of flipping or farming pets.

Also a good way to make really high end pets more attractive to buyers. For example if you have a pet worth 300k you might want to boost it just to have something unique if your competitirs are selling level 1s. Someone buying your pet will probably take a level 25 over a level 1 that’s a few gold cheaper if they’re smart (not a guarantee on the AH) so you cam boost it so you won’t have to worry about undercuts as much, basically paying to get more sales rather than sell things for more.

Discussion Point
Do you participate in pet battles or collecting? Are you in the pet market? What are you doing in preparation for the next expansion?

A great comment was brought to my attention here on Wowhead regarding leveling through dungeons since patch 7.3.5 went live. thorr69 has been testing and documenting their findings which may prove useful for anyone looking to offer powerleveling services:

Ok, I’ve been doing a LOT of testing on this since patch 7.3.5 went live. PTR did not have the final dungeon xp system in place before final patch time, so this has all been done on the live servers. The following applies to Classic dungeons (lvls 15-60):

  • The xp you receive for completing a dungeon is now on a level-based scale. Essentially, it goes up 300-350 per level from 15-60.
  • Dungeon Quest xp follows the same scale as outdoor quests. The base amount for these quests is identical to the amount of a standard classic Daily quest (such as pet trainer battles or cooking/fishing dailies)
  • Dungeon Quest xp is exactly 50% of the experience you get for dungeon completion (which also implies that the completion xp is based on the same Daily scale as the quest xp and is thus Base xp times 2).
  • Bonus bosses are worth 40% of the completion experience value
  • Important – The level requirement for the dungeon queue is essentially the minimum level for the dungeon. You can walk in early on foot as the charts say but you will suffer a combat experience penalty of about 45
  • Dungeon completion experience is not affected by the penalty, but kill experience is very much at a loss.

So, a quick example, Stratholme Service Entrance with a lvl 50 character yields 16100 experience upon completion. The quests are 8050 each. The bonus boss is worth 6450. Same Dungeon with a lvl 51 character – 16400 experience upon completion. The quests are 8200 each. The bonus boss is worth 6550.

Larger dungeons that are normally split into parts for LFD have larger completion experience. Blackrock Depths, Dire Maul, and Maraudon all have a completion experience value of 9 times the base amount. For example, BRD at lvl 51, the base xp value for quests is 8200. The completion xp for BRD is 73700 (8.987 x 8200). The quests in the larger dungeons are less than typical base. For BRD and Dire Maul, the dungeon quests yield about 50% of the base for each. In Maraudon, they appear to be about 1/3 normal base.

*These numbers have some internal rounding happening before they get multiplied so calculated xp values may vary slightly from actual ingame values, but not by a whole lot.

All that being said, the best way to use dungeons for leveling up is to do the dungeons with the most bonus bosses repeatedly. Gnomeregan has 4 bonus bosses, for example (though you’ll probably only do two of them on a run). Uldaman has 5 I believe. Stratholme (Main Gate) is the most lucrative of all of the classic dungeons with 7 bonus bosses. (Every run I do in stratholme is giving me 1.3 levels per run using heirlooms and having no Rested xp at all.)

For Outland/Northrend band dungeons:

  • Dungeon quest xp still matches the base for daily quests.
  • Dungeon completion xp is 4.5 times the dungeon quest base.
  • Scale runs from 58-80. (57 is the earliest you can do an outland dungeon, but it has the same completion xp as lvl 58 and you suffer the 45% combat experience penalty if you do it.)

For Cataclysm/Pandaria band dungeons:

  • Dungeon quest xp still matches the base for daily quests.
  • Dungeon completion xp is 4.5 times the dungeon quest base.
  • Scale runs from 80-90.

For Warlords of Draenor dungeons:

  • Dungeon completion xp is 6 times the dungeon quest base.
  • Scale runs from 90-100.

Pricing
Some discussion on the /r/woweconomy subreddit covered the topic of pricing too. Personally I’ve mostly seen Stockades runs being advertised for 200g per run, but things can get a bit more complicated or nuanced as you climb level ranges, as /u/Anukai explains:

depends how much you value your time and how much you enjoy running old dungeons. personally I can make 30k/gold an hour fairly easily with a few different farms so 500g per run is not worth the effort(for longer dungeons). you said you can run ramps in about 2min, there’s a 10 instance lockout per hour so 20min for 10 runs will net you about 10k gold at 500g per run.
which is not bad for 20min of work. id suggest doing a few practice runs to see how fast you can run a few dungeons and base your prices off that. if a dungeon takes 2-3 min charge 500g per run. if it takes 4-5 min charge 1k gold. 10 min? 2-4k gold.

Seasoned booster /u/MaliciousMal comments on their pricing structures:

Well, coming from someone who has been selling runs to boost people before the leveling revamp and has been doing 101 Twink runs as well, I can say that 500g is the max I would ever charge per run and that’s pushing it. I charge 2k for per dungeon on my 101 Twink for 100+ but that’s because it takes longer and people who are at that level usually are capable of paying for it. Now here’s the thing, for 10-60 or 60-80 you can run an entire dungeon 10 times and the person could only get a few levels so you could charge anywhere from 200g-500g while then also offering to help them do quests in the meantime. I mean hell, I sometimes can make 5k+ from flying people around Broken Isles because they don’t have flying yet.

Discussion Point
Have you been selling powerleveling services? Have you been buying powerleveling services? What has been your experience so far in either case?

As a footer to this week’s wrap-up, the Auction House API is still down. It has been over a week since the last update regarding the outage which said there is no update, essentially.

Don’t forget though, there is still a sweepstake active to guess when the API will be restored! Head on over to https://does.theapi.work/contest to get involved.

Most of this information was discussed and originally posted on the /r/woweconomy subreddit or in the accompanying Discord server. You can also catch me streaming live on Twitch every Tuesday and Saturday from 5PM UK (12 Noon US Eastern) and Thursdays from 12 Noon UK (7AM US Eastern) or Fridays from 9PM UK (4PM US Eastern) answering gold making and TradeSkillMaster questions, or you can tweet your feedback/thoughts via Twitter at @GumdropsEU





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