Saturday, December 18, 2010

Inscription: Herb Comparison

Here's my guide to the relative herb prices you should be looking at when milling cataclysm herbs.

Unfortunately, on Dath'Remar at least, the party is over as far as cheap cataclysm herbs goes. The base price of the lower quality herbs seems to have settled around 3g50 up from 2 - 2g50 quite soon after the expansion hit.

Here's a guide to the table.
  • Blackfallow Ink - The average yield of Blackfallow Ink from each mill.
  • Inferno Ink - The average yield of Inferno Ink from each mill. I'm now valuing Inferno Ink at 10 times the price of Backfallow, since there is such a huge demand for the rare ink, many people are using the Dalaran vendor to convert them.
  • Weight - Using Cinderbloom as the base herb, the weight indicates how much 'product' you get in comparison to this baseline.
  • Price Eq. - An example of the equivalent price for each herb based on the baseline of Cinderbloom at 3g50s. If Cinderbloom is at 3g50s, and I see Twilight Jasmine at under 5g98s, I'll buy the Twilight Jasmine and know I'm getting more 'product' for my coin.
  • Sample - The number of mills that I've used to derive my numbers. Naturally the more expensive herbs have a much lower figure, but it looks like the average product scales with the herbs item level pretty much as you'd expect.

Blackfallow InkInferno InkWeightPrice Eq.Sample
[Azshara's Veil]
[Twilight Jasmine]1.510.261.715.9872

Monday, December 13, 2010

Prospecting in Cataclysm

Here are my numbers for prospecting so far in Cataclysm. So far, aside from helping to level both Alchemy and Jewelcrafting it is looking quite profitable.

Here are my results for [Obsidium Ore] and [Elementium Ore].

The biggest difference is the number of rare gems gained from Elementium, but both sets of prospecting have a similar total yield of gems. Early on in the expansion, uncommon gems have been used for leveling and transmuting and are actually more expensive in a lot of cases than rare gems. So when Obsidium ore is cheap, it's a great way to help level Alchemy and transmute some meta gems. Cut rare gems are quite profitable if you pick the right pattern, and have as little competition as possible while still picking a highly desired cut that sells well.

The "Cost per Gem" figure is reasonably crude, since the value of gems varies a lot from gem to gem, and is changing fairly quickly. At the time of writing it represented a large markup in selling raw gems, but as the price of gems and ore comes down, transmuting and cutting the gems will help the raw gems retain their profitability.

Obsidiun Ore550
Number of Prospects110
Cost Obsidiau Ore11.4
Cost per Prospect57
Total Cost6270

Uncommon Gem
Rare Gem
[Jasper]28[Dream Emerald]1
[Zephyrite]32[Ocean Sapphire]0
[Carnelian]23[Inferno Ruby]0
[Hessonite]26[Ember Topaz]3

Yield Common 1.52
Yield Rare0.08
Cost per Gem37.54

Elementium Ore1080
Number of Prospects216
Cost Elementium Ore11
Cost per Prospect55
Total Cost11880

Uncommon Gem
Rare Gem
[Jasper]44[Dream Emerald]13
[Zephyrite]39[Ocean Sapphire]8
[Carnelian]43[Inferno Ruby]12
[Hessonite]47[Ember Topaz]14

Yield Common 1.12
Yield Rare0.29
Cost per Gem39.21

Friday, December 10, 2010

Cataclysm Milling

I've been doing a lot of milling since the prices of herbs, while not 'cheap' have stabilsed pretty quickly. I'm surprised by just how much people are prepared to pay for Inferno Ink (up to 500% above cost)... but it's great for the bank balance.

Some assumptions for the numbers below.
  • Inferno Ink is worth 8 times as much as Blackfallow Ink. The exchange rate is 10:1 but I'm being a little conservative, since in WotLK the ratio was at times 1:1, but Inferno Ink is looking to be a lot more useful in Cataclysm than Snowfall Ink was in WotLK.
  • Prices for herbs are changing dramatically, so expect that to change from day to day and from server to server.

Sample: 127 mills
Yield of Blackfallow Ink: 1.2
Yield of Inferno Ink: 0.12
Cost of Herb: 2g
Cost of Blackfallow Ink: 4.59
Cost of Inferno Ink: 36.75

Sample: 266 mills
Yield of Blackfallow Ink: 1.23
Yield of Inferno Ink: 0.13
Cost of Herb: 2g
Cost of Blackfallow Ink: 4.35
Cost of Inferno Ink: 34.77

Twilight Jasmine
Sample: 36 mills
Yield of Blackfallow Ink: 1.53
Yield of Inferno Ink: 0.26
Cost of Herb: 2.7g
Cost of Blackfallow Ink: 3.71
Cost of Inferno Ink: 29.68

So Twilight Jasmine is currently my herb of choice for milling, since you can pay up to 50% extra over Cinderbloom and Heartblossom to get the same result. I'm not sure if it will pan out (since the sample was only 36 mills) but Twilight Jasmine producing twice as much Inferno Ink is pretty awesome.

I'm really enjoying that I can make a profit from all the products of milling herbs, and it means I can really keep cranking out glyphs for sale at a base price of around 12-15g. Unfortunately Blizzard set the exchange rate of Blackfallow Ink to Ethereal Ink at 10:1, so I have to keep hunting for Outland herbs in order to make many of the (now) most profitable glyphs.

The changes to inscription are fantastic, and I'm looking forward to getting into the darkmoon cards as soon as possible. Today, Twitchie has a trip planned to Stormwind to deliver his Forged Documents.

One last tip: make sure you get your friendly Inscriptionist (or Scribe for you heathens) to craft you a Adventurer's Journal to get a 10% buff to your quest XP. Based on the prices above, you should be able to find them for around 15 - 30g on the AH if there's any kind of scribbling competition on your server.

As prices come down further I'll have a look at milling the other Cataclysm herbs.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Last Minute Wrath: 150k gold

After I posted that I had reached 100k gold on the server, the coin just kept flowing. The nice thing about automating many of the steps in coin generation, it doesn't take a lot of effort to keep things ticking along. Sure if you have a burning desire to have a ton of gold you can expand to new markets, and find new niches... but if you are comfy with where you're at, you can focus on your highest profit for time markets and participate in the others when you grab those bulk bargains from the AH.

A month or so ago I had 160k at my peak, and then between getting involved and another "Last Minute Wrath" project and transferring 10k horde side.... I was down to 125k.

Fortunately after the doom and gloom about the post Glyphmas slump prediction for Inscription when patch 4.0.1 hit... I found precisely the opposite. Increased materials for glyphs meant a larger mark up for each glyph, and even after the massive demand subsided... demand has been steady and the market humming along nicely.

I was completely caught out by patch 4.0.3a, and had not traded nearly enough Ink of the Sea for alternate inks before the ink trader was 'upgraded'. However, there most be a whole bunch of people leveling alts prior to Cataclysm hitting, since I've found the lower to mid level Herb markets far more accessible in the last couple of weeks. I'm still constantly short of Eternal Ink, but I make hay when the sun is shining.

The picture above has my most recent takings from selling glyphs in a single session, which at 3.8k is a new record for me. With the last taking coming in at 1.8k, hitting 5.6k worth of glyphs sold in 12 hours was a nice present just before Cataclysm.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Crafting: Maximising your AFK time

Milling herbs can sometimes be tedious... but aside from minimusing WoW and doing something else while you facroll your mailling macro, you can't escape that one keypress per action limitation that's been imposed.

Creating Inks from pigments can be equally tedious... but you can be AFK! So make sure you really fill up those 4 inscribing bags I know you all keep on your inscriptionists (and some more for the bank) and just let it roll.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Milling Goldclover

Yesterday, Goldclover hit 65s on Dath'Remar in bulk, and I hadn't seen the price even close to that since pre-4.0.1. A fantastic chance to not only make some coin, but get a decent sample size for determining yield.

Ink of the Sea / Mill : 1.24 (1.48 for Adder's Tongue)
Snowfall Ink / Mill : 0.14 (0.25 for Adder's Tongue)

Absolutely awful for Snowfall Ink... which is usually the bane of an Inscriptionist's workshop, however I'm trying to stockpile it, since I have an ink exchange program happening as well as churning out those cards for some reason. /winkyface

Sticking with the assumption that Ink of the Sea's market value is half of Snowfall Ink... You want to make sure you are picking up Goldclover at 3/4 of the price of Adder's tongue to get the same value from milling it.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Base Price of Glyphs

I thought I'd a post out there for all the struggling Inscriptionists trying to make a living since another golden era of coin making has tapered off as the glyph market becomes stable after patch 4.0.1. Also, for my friend Moordenar, who is resistant to the idea of glyphs costing more than 10g.

First some basic assumptions from the current economy on Dath'Remar.

Market Prices:
Ink of the Sea (IotS): 4g50s
Snowfall Ink (SI): 9g
Adder's Tongue: 1g - 1g50s

Finally herb prices are dropping significantly enough to really start cranking out some inks.

Yield from millling Adder's Tongue
 I have tested the results of milling Adder's Tongue over 382 mills (yes, that's 1910 herbs and about 2k gold worth at the time) have have:
IotS/Mill: 1.48
SI/Mill: .25

Remember, that is ink per mill, not pigment.

Total Market Value of one Mill
Using the current market values, 6g68s worth of IotS and 2g27s worth of SI for a total of 8g95. So the markup on the 5g of herbs (at 1g/ea) from milling is 79%.

If you've ever annoyed your wife by continuously hitting a key (with the edge of the WoW window barely visible in the corner of the screen) while you are watching some TV together... that's really not a whole lot. However, this morning there was only 40 IotS at or below that market price, and I could plonk down over 2k gold for Adder's Tongue that would net me over 640 IotS, you just gotta mill those herbs.

Getting to the cost of Ink of the Sea

Now that I have the value of a single mill, and the relative value of both products, I can jam that back into the total cost of a single mill (5g @ 1g/ea for herbs) and divide by the yield to get:
Cost of IotS: 2g51s
Cost of SI: 5g03s

So milling herbs is generally significantly cheaper than the current market price of inks. Good news. Now how about those glyphs?

The mark up on Glyphs
A glyph costs at most 1 Resilient Parchment (40s) and 3 IotS (2g51s) for a total of 7g94s. So what's a reasonable markup based on getting those herbs at 1g/ea? I'm going to propose that if you buy a glyph for less than 16g, please send your Inscriptionist a lovely thankyou note.

Time is Money, Friend! Purchasing herbs, milling them, creating the inks, scanning the AH, selecting which glyphs to make, making those glyphs, listing them on the AH, getting the 90% of your glyphs that don't sell out of the mail and relisting those glyphs takes a lot of time. Even with with a slick set up, lots of delightful addons and maximising your AFK time for parts of the process, it's reasonably involved.

So it's only recently that the herb prices have dropped this low on Dath'Remar, and now that many toons have their glyph requirements sorted, things have certainly stabilised. I currently have over 500 glyphs on the AH, and aside from Glyph of the Wild.... my most expensive glyph is only 31g42s with the majority sitting squarely in that 15 - 25g range, which is what I'd like to call a modest mark up for much needed service to all of Azeroth.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Heroic DF$#@%ingO

Twitchie has been enjoying destruction since the patch, while straddling the affliction and destruction trees is a little awkward (especially with such little legs). Along with destruction, I've revamped my UI, and started using NeedToKnow as my timer mod, which handles all of buffs, debuffs and spell cooldowns. Conflagrating with confidence is the key to gnomish destruction.

I'm also enjoying the change in flavour between the specs. What attracted me to affliction was that as a master of shadow damage and dots, I was kin to the shadow priest. I would destroy my enemies from the inside out with crippling damage over time, while brutally assaulting them with my nukes.

Destruction is kinda different. It's like I'MA SET SOME $#@% ON FIRE! So that's fun too. I think Demo is a little Emo, but it's fun to sing, "look at my demon, my demon's amazing!" Turning INTO a demon is also pretty freakin' awesome and I've never had so much fun farming leather. Dismount. Meta. Immolation Aura. Hellfire. Big numbers. All dead.

So I found a run in ICC 25 that was doing some hard modes. I checked the loot rules, after which I declined and logged back to Borg. A pst later assuring me there will be no loot too awesome that I wouldn't be able to roll on (and there'd be no drama)... I was back in.

Even as affliction, the DPS was rocking, and despite a death to a bone spike during Heroic Marrowgar, spirits were high. I don't think it quite dawned on me until halfway through the fight, that Heroic Rotface would mean Heroic DFO... so when it dropped, I thanked Elune and prepared myself for the roll. 83 =O. Kablam, it's in my bag. [Dislodged Foreign Object].

The screenshot above is from a Champion of Ulduar run in 10 man Ulduar. I decided to go on Twitchie, since it's reasonably unlikely that a pug would burn through the place Undying style, even if we had a couple of hiccups, he'd only been in for weekly bosses and it was a good chance to hang out in a good group. A good group it was, so not only did I get in a tidy full clear of Ulduar, but we blasted Algalon as well. Starcaller Twitchie. It has a nice ring to it I think. I have a post in the works about our guild run of Algalon, so maybe Twitchie's romp through Ulduar will revive that. Ulduar 10 was a great place to test out destruction without having to worry much about DPS. Having said that of course, we absolutely flattened some of the bosses. Surprisingly, we didn't lose anyone on Yogg-Saron which was great. However, accidental pulls for Hodir and Freya (we one shot her with 2 Guardians AND two packs of trash shortly after killing the first guardian (Con-speed-atory was a nice side effect)) saw toons die. On Mimiron we lost someone to basic raid awareness (being our of range for heals) and just silliness (getting hit by slow moving core boss mechanics) saw someone on die on Vezax.

Speaking of Vezax, getting a 101k Conflagrate crit was pretty awesome. Next time my fellow casters will be aware of the fight mechanics and won't go oom so quickly. ;)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

100,000 gold


While I haven’t blogged a lot recently, that day has finally come! I was astounded when I sold [Ikfirus’ Sack of Wonder] on behalf of the guild for 25k, more than I had ever owned between all my toons soon after ICC was released. I had heard about players with over 100k, and after some googling... players who were “gold capped” (214748g36s47c is the maximum gold on a single toon (since gold is stored as an unsigned 32 bit integer)) and even bloggers that have marched onto 1 million gold.

So I started to set my sights a little higher. The first thing I did was to expand my craftables spreadsheet with the usual high volume markets. Leg patches, drums, meta gems, spellthread, vellums and fort scrolls. I also resurrected my inscription trade, thanks to a fantastic addon Quick Auctions 3 which deals with the glyph market very well.

The next job was identifying toons that could cover the professions that I hadn’t leveled yet. Jondayla has a leatherworker, so I immediately put her to work. The volume of regular borean leather she has schmunched into heavy leather over the last few months is epic. Thanks to Moonspirit for her Moonshroud specialty and Therepoman for his Spellweave (Zenborg gets double Ebonweave). Other than that I had all the crafting professions covered (now with a Gnomish AND a Goblin Engineer).

I almost forgot! A special mention to Jondayla for transmuting gems and titanium for me for ages! I forgot about it until I sent the mats for 60 meta gems (edit: which came back as 66 meta gems) just now.

Then I got to work. I had already set up thresholds to watch for flask, potion and belt buckle materials for the guild bank. So it wasn’t a lot extra to add to my morning AH scan to grab the rest. I was already used to spending between 20 - 30k per month for the guild, so I relished the opportunity to start buying in larger volumes for myself as well. I did need to grab a couple of quick macros so that I could buy 4k gold worth  of leather in a single sitting without boring myself too much.

Then the coin came rolling in. The high volume items (including bullets) have just kept on trucking, with the ICC craftables providing some excitement [like when cloth pants sell for 2.5k profit even while prices are deteriorating].

I think my attraction to coin generation is primarily that it is something that I can do on my own. While I have a fantastic group of crafters who help out, I can mail them mats and have stuff crafted whenever it suits them... you can’t mail a raid ID and have someone’s return combo DPS / fire avoidance returned to you later on. I’m not a big quester, I only like to level in bursts... and rep grinds are mostly painful at best. While farming I can’t keep from keeping muttering the mantra, “Time is money, friend”. So while coin making is one of those necessities, it’s the most fun solo aspect of the game for me. The other bonus is that it can be done in small time slices, and I can queue up smelting 10 minutes worth of saronite and just go AFK. Having a spreadsheet to track profitability great fun too!

So now I’m all cashed up for Cataclysm, but I haven’t quite decided on a coin strategy yet. I could blow it all trying for a realm first profession, but if people in the US get to log in hours in advance it might be a no go. The summer months are very busy real life months for me, so Wrath might repeat itself and the coin dwindles away as outside of raiding and the odd daily there isn’t a lot of time for much else.

To celebrate I made Borgelmir a pair of [Boots of Kingly Upheaval] since he is generally tanking these days and ArP on all the T10 Death Knight makes a unholy DK want to cry.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

25k Gold Transaction

My guild recently looted [Ikfirus's Sack of Wonder] and what a wonderous sack it was.

We have a policy of allowing toons in the run to take BoE items as an upgrade for their main spec, but failing that sell the items through our guild bank. The guildie discount for BoE items is around the 65 - 70% mark, which means not only does the toon get a bargain, but everyone else in the run (and the guild as a whole) benefits from the coin (we sell discounted potions / flasks / eternal belt buckles / enchants through the guild bank).

On this occasion, we banked the item after no interest for a main spec upgrade (mostly due to the peculiar itemisation, and us not running a Bear in our raids). When I looked at the auctioneer data for the item, I started to get a little excited. 25k gold seemed... like... a LOT. So I set the guild price at 8k, and went to the AH.

First up, I wanted to list it at an obscene price on the off chance that a guildie wanted it at 8k. 29400 gold would net almost 28k, so I started there. Almost immediately, I received an offer in the mail from someone's bank alt, offering 25k gold. Later in the day I was whispered with offers over 10k, and got the resigned, "some people have too much gold" when I told them our current best offer.

After checking with guildies that could use the upgrade (8k was still a little steep), I met up with our buyer in Dalaran. At this point in the game, the most coin I had amassed across all my toons was 25k gold, so seeing that much in the trade window got my heart beating a little faster. Even my personal throughput of gold through the guild bank of around 20k gold just didn't compare to seeing it all in one lump sum.

My curiosity got the best of me, and I enquired as to who would be wearing the chest... and it turns out it was going to a horde bear tank in one of the more progressed horde guilds on the server. Although I've dabbled in neutral AHs and grabbing the odd recipe or two from the horde AH, I couldn't believe that I hadn't thought of monitoring the horde AH for those must have BoE items (and other potential money spinners).

So much to my surprise, we decided to bank the coin to give us a head start in Cataclysm, should the guild changes require any actual gold.