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Archive for February 2011

KickMe.jpg

What saying," Hi all, I've never tanked heroics before," gets interpreted as.

Hi listeners,

Wecome back to the Warcraft Lounge.  Big news this week as the 4.1 patch notes have hit the internet.  We apologize for only being able to skim them on this episode, as they were released the day we decided to record the podcast.  More information to come down the road, but changes they are a comin' and we're here to help you through them.

Rule of Thumb: If your buff food exceeds the price of the Mysterious Fortune Card or the Fortune Cookie, buy the Card/Cookie.

As far as the economy is concerned, Ryan & Chris talk about what you can do now to prepare yourself for money making when 4.1 goes live.  Word of the day: Upgrades.

Ryan tackled the bear that is archaeology; how to make it easier, how to make it faster, and how to actually make it profitable!  Don't forget, get the addon Archy if you don't want to spend hours screwing around at the dig sites.  (Ryan is now up to 17 rares, having hit 525 Archaeology a week ago.)

The hosts talk about the holy trinity of how to keep yourself from getting kicked: Etiquette, Competence, & Padding Your Resume.

We talk about the classes that should have dual spec NO MATTER WHAT!  (No excuses: pay the money, get the glyphs, and know your role, Jabroni.)

Much discussion, much arguing, and Ryan actually Bloodlusts at one point.  Thanks again for listening, please feel free to comment and give us a good review on iTunes (we'll mention you on the next podcast if you do!), and post your questions below if you want direct answers from us.

Sincerely,

Ryan (Lohrdook/Stilleiro - Hydraxis; Dynam - Gilneas)

& Chris (Drakkmur/Doobee - Hydraxis)

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Undercut.jpg

Chris and his pricing tactics, strike again.

Not to toot our own horn, but we're fairly prolific when it comes to getting advice from us about things to make, how to make them, sometimes even what price to charge.  However, it occurs to me, as I am posting my glyphs for the third time today, that we have discussed very little about undercutting strategy.  That, ladies and gents, is about to change.

The first thing you need to understand about your item, is if the item is fungible.  In business, all voting shares of IBM, or Microsoft, or Oracle are exactly the same.  They have one price, and nobody's shares are higher quality than anyone else's.  

Since your stack of Cinderbloom is not any better than someone else's stack of Cinderbloom (quality factor), players make buying decisions based on two alternative factors: PRICE and QUANTITY.  Price is the most effective lever you can pull, although quantity does matter.

If you are lost, prepare to be found: If someone else in the AH is posting the exact same thing you are, either sell your shit for less, or find a way to package it more conveniently.  Trust me, nobody who needs 30 Volatile Life likes buying 30 Volatile Life one at a smegging time, even if you have an addon (Auctionator) that makes it not much harder than clicking a button 30 times.  And as we have discussed previously, undercutting your competition by a copper will net you 100% of the business, every time.

You can undercut for a copper, and you can undercut by considerably more.  See Episode 10 of the podcast for more details on that.

Posting: 12 hour sales, period, especially if you're trying to sell a high priced Epic.  Running a business means you should focus on two costs: Top line and bottom line.  Top line, is the items you sell and their revenue generated.  Bottom line, are the expenses you incur to make those items.  These include raw materials, and for the purpose of this discussion, auction house fees.  To keep your costs to a minimum, when you are posting an item/good with ANY sort of competition, post your items at the shortest allowable period.  If you post for 48 hours, then have to cancel and repost because you have been undercut by a copper, you end up losing more than if you had posted it for 12 hours, and reposted.

Friends List: If Blizzard renamed the Friends List to 'People Tracker', more people would take advantage of this sneaky strategy: put your major competition on your friends list.  I don't care if you hate them with the heat and intensity of a thousand suns, you're adding them to your friends list because every time one of them logs on or logs off, you get a little yellow message in the lower corner telling you: Hey, your competition has logged off for the night.  Let's go undercut everything he posted.  Get it? (To avoid being an easy target, give your bank alt one of those horrific names with the ASCII characters in them - most people will not be able to add you to the friends list because your Bank alt is named "Pàáâãäåæçèéêëy").

Don't Always be the Lowest: Every now and then someone will post an item in the AH and you get a situation that looks like this...

  • Random Crappy Item - 1 stack of 1 - 15g 20s 43c
  • Random Crappy Item - 10 stacks of 1 - 23g 86s 10g

Don't bother undercutting the first person.  Undercut the second person.  His supply of one Random Crappy Item is probably going to get bought out (and you can even consider buying it yourself and reposting it if the volume is high enough), leaving the rest of the server clamoring for the 23g Crappy Item from auctioneer #2.  Don't undercut the idiot who posted at 15g, undercut the other guy at 23g.  If you have 20 of that item to post, you just earned yourself an additional 160g for that one stack, by not being the 'cheapest' in the AH.  Experience in a given market will help you learn when it is best to be the cheapest, or the second cheapest.

Pricing: Get your money back.  Seriously, do not sell things for lower than they cost you to make.  I say this in all seriousness, because you have no idea how many people will devote WEEKS of their life making and then selling items for zero to negative profit.  Thankfully, over time they get bored as they make sales but earn no profits, and then they go back to the tried and true method of farming, aka, being poor.  Do not get dragged into a price war with an idiot who does not value or respect their time and the cost of the materials it takes to make an item.  Farming your own mats IS NOT FREE, but some of your competition will view it like that and sell flasks and glyphs with that incredibly shortsighted mentality in mind.

Who is crazier, the crazy person or the person who tried to match wits with crazy people?  If someone decides to move into your current market and put items on the AH so low as to get paid little to nothing, move on.  However, keep close tabs on the market, checking it 3-4 times per week, because eventually the morons who don't price in profits, will quit the market.  Crafting items is work, and selling finished goods for less than the farmed materials, is something even the dimmest of bulbs will eventually figure out.

Gouging: If you are the only one selling an item on your server, how much do you sell it for?  Answer: it depends.  If more of the item are potentially on the way (crafted epics, new metas/enchants) then you want to sell your item high enough that you get a decent monopoly price for it, but not so much that you cause people to simply wait you out for a better deal.  If the item is somewhat scarce (BoEs from raiding, etc.) and not likely to be replenished soon, then you have a little more leeway because people can't seek guildies or other people to make it for them.  

I personally will raise the item 10%-20% higher than the average selling price; pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered.  Don't be a price hog. 

(If you need the average price of something, go to the Undermine Journal and check the selling price.)

That's it for now; later on this week, I will talk about actual undercutting tactics.  Let me know if there is anything you want me to touch on, but I think this is a pretty good primer for those posting items in the AH.)

-Ryan (Lohrdook/Stilleiro - Hydraxis, Dynam - Gilneas)

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Dualspec.jpg Learn to be this, and you can save yourself seven days of your life.  Seven.

[Podcast editing in progress]

Listeners,

Chris and Ryan discuss the most efficient and reliable way to shorten your queue time with this simple question?

What's better than one spec?  Two.

The Five Most Important Words to You While Gearing up Your Dual Spec: Can I need for OS?  (Feel free to cut & paste, and /p macro it.)

P.S. If you want to learn how to heal or tank or even dps, find someone you know is good at healing or tanking or dps and look at their armory.  Then feel free to ask them about their character.  I've used the forums at Elitist Jerks, and clicked on the character sheet of the people posting the most intelligent stuff; it takes you to their armory page.

Credits for this amazing 'buff map' must go to someone named heltonagusto, and a select group of people that have put together an accurate representation of all the buffs in the game.  If only they had abilities like Bloodlust, Hysteria of Ancient Kings or Timewarp set up in the same kind of format?

Do you keep decursive and healbot up if you're dps?  Find out which host does, and which host doesn't.

Can you kill a trade troll?  Our hosts ponder that imponderable and the other mysterious, inscrutable wonders of Trade Chat.

Auction Profit Master is dead.  TradeSkillMaster is King!  LONG...LIVE...the KING!

Addon of the Week: Altaholic.  This won't make you a better dps, tank or healer but it will make you a much better player.

Yay or Nays: God Bless premanufactured controversy.

Will you please tell a friend about us?  Please.  We're asking you now, personally.  We want to keep doing this, and can step it up with blog posts and in the future downloadable economic spreadsheets like the one Ryan is using right now if and when the numbers bear it out.  We can probably make meaningful spreadsheets on a continual basis because we're both finance majors capable of making some fairly advanced economic spreadsheets, and have a firm understanding of the market and economy in the World of Warcraft.

As steady as this has been, we need a push from you, our gracious listener.  Feel free to link us on your guild forums, and think of it this way: If it makes people money, it will make your guild that much better.  We've been seeing people making crazy money using the tips we're putting up here, and when people have extra money they can buy crafted epics, boEs, and get the premier gems, enchants and flasks.  We're on totally unlimited bandwith, so any additional hits come out of Podbean's pockets, not ours.  We'd love to reach more ears, and hopefully those ears get better with what they do, and the more people we can reach, the better the podcast and soon to be blog can be.  That's win-win, imo.

Also, Chris and I have been getting bombarded with whispers this week from three camps of people: people who were already crafting and got better, people who were farming and converted to crafting (and believing after making more money crafting), and those who maintained despite evidence that farming was the better way.  

I wish there was some way to preserve all those messages, but there isn't so I am asking all the crafters to please share them with the farmers now.  Anyone who was crafting or started crafting, please post in the comments on what the last two weeks have been like for you if this podcast has helped in any way.  We'd love to see what the hell worked and what didn't.  Maybe if something didn't work out, we can help you work on an alternate solution (we're that confident.) 

Seriosuly, feel free to turn this into the Donald Trump meets Scrooge McDuck gold-pile competition and share it with us here.  Be specific with your numbers, because 'I made lots' sucks really badly as a post and should be mocked.  Share with the community what worked so you can prove right the iconic words of Wall Street's Gordon Gekko when he said,"Greed, for lack of a better word, is good.  Greed is right.  Greed works.  Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures, the essence of the evolutionary spirit." 

The rest of the server may not know it, but the glyphs, gems, armors, weapons and enchantments don't actually make themselves, and the server would have none whatsoever without the crafters; help us help you by letting us know what info helped, what sucked, and what else we could deliver. 

Thanks, as always, for listening,

Ryan (Lohrdook/Stilleiro - Hydraxis, Dynam - Gilneas) & Chris (Drakkmur/Doobee - Hydraxis)

[Old Bean's Birthday Note: Seriously, Fogo De Chao is the best.  If you think it's kosher to exchange fifty bucks for the privilege to be set loose like Mr. Burns's hounds upon thirteen different, uniquely amazing cuts of meat you're ever likely to devour, all-you-can eat in a high class setting, then you will like this place.  Tips: The salad bar is a Sarlacc-pit for fools and girlfriends, but you do have to go up there to get a plate.  Get up, get it, put nothing on it, and walk it back to the table like it's your freshly printed identity disc.   They give you a coaster, and as long it's green side up, waiters keep showing up with these amazing cuts on skewers, and will literally chop them off for you at the table onto your plate, like some sort of crazy meat sculpture trick.  Oh, and it never stops, and you can't understand a single word they say because they're mumbling and foreign, but what they're holding usually speaks for itself so it's never a problem.  The Filet Mignon guy looks like he's holding a 3 pronged trident; flag him down every time.  Once you decide the mountain in front of you is sufficient for this go-round, you flip it red side up.  No mas, no mas .  Please, sir, don't judge me too harshly for this, but if ffs could you please stop bombarding me with meat we'd get along a lot better.  Also, I don't know how many Weight Watcher points this place is, but I'm guessing it's epic.  I don't know the scale they use at all, but I'm going with 42.]

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