I had an interesting encounter in LOTRO yesterday, of the sort that only really crops up just after an expansion is released.
I was wandering around Dunland, minding my own business (well, actually minding other people’s business because that’s what we quasi-ranger PCs do in Middle Earth) and I saw on the zone chat someone looking to swap for a 3rd Age Runekeeper’s Runestone. They linked a wide range of other legendary drops they’d picked up as up for trade.
I thought, “Hm, I know I’ve been picking up some legendary weapon/item drops over the last couple of days, was one of those a runestone with the fire attunement he’s asking for?”
So I looked through my bags and found it. Then I whispered the guy asking if that was the sort of thing he had in mind, because I’d be happy to trade it for the burglar item in his list of unwanted drops. He was really excited, apparently it was ideal. So we met up and did the swap. (The burglar tools did turn out to have pretty good traits which was a bonus, but I could have levelled them up to disenchant regardless.)
Now, you could argue that since he really did want my random drop, I could have gotten a much better price. Even from putting it up for auction for gold and pointing him to the auction house. But somehow, a win-win swap of something you don’t want for something you do just FEELS more satisfying. I am sure all the AH goblins will be shaking their heads at this. Absolutely certain of it. But since I don’t really need the gold, I have the luxury of bartering if it makes me happy.
The reason I say this only really happens at the start of an expansion is because in MMOs these days, that’s about the only time that a random drop will be useful and/or an upgrade over what you already have.