This is an eloquent goodbye post from Caffeine, Smokes and Auction House Fees. He writes about his journey as a player from getting interested in making gold in game to maxing out his gold reserves, and the anticlimax of realising he has nothing to spend all that gold on.
Summary for those who don’t want to read spammy Meat Loaf lyrics (look, I like Bat out of Hell as much as the next person but that doesn’t mean I want to read entire songs in blog posts.) He’s finished all his goals in WoW, which included maxing out his gold via auction house antics, and is quitting blogging about gold.
I don’t know how long a million gold will last me, but I don’t see myself being a pauper in the near future and until then I will be living off my stockpiles of mats and when that fails my gold. I hope that eventually I learn to be frivolous.
I’ll answer that question. A million gold will last all of your alts for longer than your entire future interest in the game. Well done, you’ve made more WoW gold than you could feasibly ever spend. But did you make any friends along the way, or only auction house rivals?
From comments on the post from players who have similarly made lots of gold and then gotten bored, you can see though where all the interest in gold DKP runs (where you bid for raid drops with gold) comes from. Players who have convinced themselves that the reason they make gold in game is because they’re just that much smarter than everyone else can’t bear to think that it’s a pointless endeavour. So they start inventing schemes that reward gold-makers, rather than player skill at combat. (GDKP starts to fail when the boosters don’t feel that they need the gold enough to put up with the paying newbies/ alts, incidentally.)
This is not to disrespect making gold as an in game activity. In many ways it is very egalitarian – there are many many different ways to make gold in MMOs and surely some will suit every playing style.
However this does underline a comment I made in a previous post which was that I didn’t understand why more AH junkies in WoW didn’t want to try EVE. EVE Online is a far better and deeper economic simulation, and devs also reward those who do well at the economic game by allowing players to swap in game cash for subscription fees. So if you’re good at the markets, you can play for free.
And yet people prefer to stay with the game where they have market expertise and know exactly what sells and who buys, even when they have no need for the gold at all. But what if Blizzard decided that economic play was something they wanted to encourage, and that there should be cool but extremely expensive stuff for them to buy – for example, what if you could buy a guild house for 1 million gold?
Should WoW offer better rewards for gold makers?
The problem with offering better rewards for in game currency without requiring players to complete content is that it lures in gold farmers and gold sellers. And when I say gold farmers, I also mean account stealers.
There isn’t a good way around this other than policing gold sellers/ buyers carefully or limiting gold supplies in some way which would require even the gold farmers to play in a productive way. And the horse has bolted on the latter because even moderately casual players likely now have large gold reserves in WoW.
But aside from that, assume that there is a hypothetical way to confirm that a player got their gold legitimately by playing/ trading in game. What if there was a whole subset of endgame which cost large amounts of gold to enter? The housing example I gave earlier might be a good one — a guild could pool together to buy a house, or a rich individual could have one of their own.
Whatever it was would need to have lots of fancy stuff to show off. We assume people with gold want people to know about it, and that means showy luxury items and ‘exciting’ shopping experiences. And yet not everyone with the drive to make gold has a similar drive to spend it. Perhaps instead what they’d want is better market-related tools — banks of NPC crafters maybe, or sell orders, or the ability to set up their own shops in capital cities and design their own goods. But that just unbalances the market even further in their favour without really setting up a proper gold sink.
Or maybe something really offbeat like being able to pay WoW gold for improved access to developers.
You sometimes have to wonder, is this where capitalism ends too? Once people in the ultra rich class simply run out of things to buy and just keep going out of habit?
I still think there’s a lot to be said for my suggestion of resetting the gold supply after every expansion. Think of it as an inheritance tax ;)
I was right, incidentally
I don’t mean to rag on Breevok, who sounds as though he’s been through an emotional time.
But actually gold in WoW ceased to have much meaning awhile ago. I have about 40k on Spinks and I’m not even sure how – yes I occasionally sell things on the auction house but not in an organised way. I don’t even know if I can be bothered to make some of the new 365 weapons and sell those, even though she’s a blacksmith and has the recipes. I don’t need the gold. And the gold I have isn’t going to go anywhere. Why not? Well, it’s basically because I have friends and a nice social guild and there aren’t many goldsinks in WoW, and even the ones there are will ease off over time. I didn’t have to actually pay much gold for my 365 two-handed sword, I’m not the person in the market for the finished article although I did buy some of the mats.
Anyhow, I called this one back in January and suggested that if gold was reset with every expansion, it might keep economic players more interested.
Gathering gold is the only thing you can do in WoW which – so far – has been guaranteed to carry over into the next expansion. <…> Since tradeskills aren’t balanced for cash making, all this means is that anyone who leaped on a gold making scheme in one expansion may never have to worry about gold again.
Nice for them, maybe. But is it good for the game?
Which is why it’s so funny that all these so-called goblins are so quick to label more chilled out players as morons and slackers and idiots and stupid people.