Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Unusual Tactics

I've been meaning to write something about this for a while, but I was just too busy focusing on leveling a few alts. At some point I really did want to write about it because I was dealing with this set of unusual tactics daily. At some point in a wired way it became a competitive game of a sort when dealing with the Auction House.

Of what sort of game I cant say, but when you hate to loose you try to win at all cost or find ways you never though of. In the end I came to the conclusion that my personal time was much better spent doing other things I had as a goal to get done vs battling with Unusual Tactics on my server with a seller.

Everyone makes a huge deal over and about the Glyph Industry and the selling of them on which ever server your on. Each server has its own economy and they are all different. The power sellers that tend to control or manipulate whichever words you like, they tend to find innovative ways to dominate their own server AH in various ways. So you can make a bit of money selling glyphs. It can take a bit of investment as well. As well you can go broke big in that market too depending on your server economy and a few good goblins there as well to break you.

If you want advice of the sort to selling glyphs or other AH tactics you can go read Greedy Goblins blog whether you like him or not as a goblin. I've read his stuff too like allot of other stuff i read.

I've been a AH seller for as long as I've played WoW. I've always made plenty of money on AH but i don't need to gobs of it either. I learned that way back leveling up my Paladin back in tBC doing Alchemy when I would park myself at AH in Undercity and makes potions and elixirs for hours vs leveling. I figured out how to make money at my own bootstraps in WoW and with my own professions. So in WoW I've never been broke for money. But i'm not much of a spender either or for fluff stuff.

Even though I make a bit of money through various things I never have much use for making tons of it either. Simply in WoW I'm not a big spender nor am i as a player a huge consumer either. There really isn't anything in game I really spend money on or choose to. So even if I made lots of money and I do it becomes moot after a while since you never spend much of it on anything or anything I care for. So when it comes to making money on AH I just do it for profession activities and just fun.

Which leads to the tale of my DK selling Glyphs on my server. Back in March/April or so after returning to WoW and playing again I rolled a DK since I hadn't before for WoLK. So I leveled one up eventually to lvl 65 and made him skilled in Inscription. Parked him in Org, leveled him up in inscription to 450 milling/selling glyphs. I have a few toons skilled in Herbalism so it wasn't too difficult to do. Nothing to that.

I mentioned several times here on the blog before that I was doing that as well and that I did rather well at it. I did it just as a daily hobby especially since I wasn't playing my Paladin much or doing dailies on him. So it was my way of just one of several ways of making daily side income in the AH economy by using my DK. So he sold glyphs in peaceful existence with a few other regular sellers on our server AH. So in the months I was selling glyphs you recognize the major server power players who do it daily. There was less that 5 major ones and many many minor floaters by. I would say I was a player just by sheer activity on AH.

Did well and made money. AH for me is just playing around making money as a mini-game. At some point literally over night I noticed the glyph market changed on my server. It was due to one particular seller/player that started selling glyphs and changed the balance of things. And of all the names in the world his name was the exact name of the enemy to the Horde. Cant imagine what that name was do you? Yeah that one.

Couldn't care less if the seller name was Mightymouse. But he named him self after the enemy and started doing over time what i noticed was unusual tactics in a huge way. If i ever hated a damn player this one shot straight to the top of every list i had in mind in game.

This one player on my server became in my opinion thorn in the ass that sold glyphs. I cant say i had a problem with any the sellers before. I didn't with the guy that would put up what seem like almost 2000 glyphs on AH daily. Na didn't have a problem with him. We both sold stuff and he even stopped selling a while with the new seller on the block that was upsetting the balance. But the new seller had ruthlessness that was goblinistic if you ask me.

For a while it depressed the market in price as well as affected how many items I sold daily with lots of returned unsold glyphs. It became apparent when I started noticing lots of stuff expired returning to mail unsold. That became suspicious as it didn't happen before. I still sold stuff and was still doing glyph research on my DK as well learning new glyphs at the time as well.

This one new player on the server was trying to corner the AH glyph market. He just about sold ever glyphs under the sun. So literally he obviously sold more glyphs than I could since some I hadn't learned as yet. As well he was competing with the other sellers. I started paying attention to the sellers daily and to the tactics this seller was using. Slowly a few of the regulars on the server over weeks seem to stop selling. Even the guy that was listing 2000 glyphs a day on AH for mass listing. A few kept at it. A few sellers I had heard was bought out by the new seller. Some the sellers I could see around Orgrimmar so i knew in some way who they were by name from AH.

The Tactics.
What i started noticing about this one seller/player was initially he started selling on his main which was obvious by name to his entry on the market. He was a lvl 80 Druid. He was never there before, so i suspect a person who server transferred. Then he started selling on his alt which had the name of the enemy and the one that was obvious. How I was able to tell that both was that they used the same pricing always on everything as well underbid the same with the same price underbid priicing. Always by 1c on everything bid and buyout.

Next a few other glyph sellers seemed to enter the market as well which seemed like there was allot of competition as well. What became obvious from how the pricing was listed on items and underbid was that they were like 5-6 new sellers but really it was the same person/account but selling on 5-6 different lvl 1-10 toons. Each toon was selling glyphs and seem to be competing with each other. I'm sure they weren't. Few of his alts was even listed in the same guild. The others was in a tiny one person banking guild.

But whenever this one guy was underbid whichever of his low lvl 1-10 toon he as on he would underbid right back by 1c. Over time it seems like their was 5-6 different sellers, when actually it was just one player. That all caught my attention since when I was at AH i would look at the seller names and the price, bid, buyout price and by how much. In time you figure its the same person generating competition on various random glyphs or underbidding as it happen.

When my DK was selling before he entered the market he sold glyphs since all he was using was inscription bags to hold allot of glyphs. But some time back I had started leveling my DK as more focus and made a new Alt to handle all that storage and selling of glyphs while leveling up my DK.

So on my new lvl 1 glyph seller I started tracking this one seller that was a AH thorn. On the glyphs sellers that sold glyphs I suspected that was him I added to my lvl 1 seller friends list. Based on the log in and out it turned out that this one seller had 2 mains that sold glyphs. A 80 Druid and a 80 DK and about 6-7 different alts that all sold glyphs under various names on AH underbidding everyone else around the clock based on login and logouts. His alts did nothing else but stay at AH as they never ever changed levels.

What also became obvious was that he would log in on his prime glyph seller screen name and relist his his glyphs up to 3-4 times a hour. That's about every 15 min's he would relog to check prices and if he was underbid he would mass delist and relist again underbidding everyone else by 1c-5c. I used to wonder how I was being underbid so fast and getting so many things back unsold. This particular guy did it all day long. Literally all day long.

In my job I work odd hours sometime at days and sometimes at nights on shift. So at times I can be logged on on WoW real late at night or real early in the morning based on work schedule that week. It wasn't unusual at various times when i logged on to check stuff i had on AH that this one guy was also logged on at AH or at the Mail box in Org or in Undercity depending on which of his low lvl alts he was on.

His alts were all at AH or at the mailbox. It wasn't unusual when I logged on to my Paladin in Dalaran to transmute the new epic gems that his main was sitting at a mail box making glyphs or something else as well looking at my combat log to see who's crafting what around me. I have no idea what this guy did other than WoW. But he had the AH literally cornered what seemed 24hrs a day just about almost every day with this presence selling glyphs and not for cheap baring no competition.

I used to think, hey this guy cant be awake at real early in he morning like at 0330 and times like that. So I relisted stuff on AH sometimes during that time of slow server activity. Before I was logged out he was logged on and changing his prices. At 10AM same thing. At mid afternoon, early evening, later at night. He was logged in and out at AH doing the same thing at different times listing glyphs, delisting glyphs and changing prices. This guy never sleeps it seems. And anyone that has that much time to be at AH around the clock 24 hours a day it seems aren't doing anything else in life i suppose.

One weekends at times he would depress the entire market which can mean dropping all glyphs to around 4-5g each flat. But on the times he did that I often noticed that he wasn't around for several hours either whenever he did. So he would depress the market so no one else can really underbid or underbid at really low profit while he was away from the game. When he was back later the redid all his prices.

When this guy had no competition on AH he would jack the price of glyphs and everything he sold up to around 60-65 per glyphs and every glyphs across the board. You notice this stuff over time. If you underbid him at say 50% price. Whenever he logs on he underbid you back by 1c-5c. And he would do that all day long no matter how low you tried to underbid. Whenever a particular glyphs was not being sold he would then jack the price back up to 60-65g per glyphs. That seemed to be his default high limit price. The average price I sold my Glyphs was much lower than his was for my own conscience. I don't need to make a a ton of profit, its just a hobby for fun. This one seller had other motivations. Each seller and why they sell are motivated by different things and probably not all the same reason.

Whats unusual about all this is this one glyph seller on AH would do this on 6-7 different lvl 1-10 alts all would do this all day long. And if he needed to keep underbidding someone to kick them out the market or bankrupting them by constant underbidding no matter how low the underbid price was he was doing it all daily.

Over time I noticed some the regular sellers that used to sell no longer sold. Some was leveling up their characters, some quit selling. Some sold on and off. This one guy kept at it. I did as well as was making a game at trying to compete with him for a while. And it became that. I just hated the thought of being beaten out on the AH or being pushed out by this one seller tactics.

I was starting to level up my DK around the same time. I eventually got him to 80 and was running Heroics a bit. But leveling up my DK i realize I didn't have the time to keep playing that game at AH with this one seller. It was literally wasting allot of my time. He watches the AH like a damn paranoid hawk and as much as he logs in and logs out on his characters to watch the AH their aren't much ways I choose to want to waste my time competing just to sell something that i just did for fun. It wasn't fun anymore at the price of time to relist stuff on AH. It was more a headache. It became a damn time waster dealing with this one guy and his unusual tactics. In that time I leveled up my Shaman and DK to lvl 80 and geared him up a bit.

I still make and sell glyphs and I do sell a few for just side income with this one seller competitor around. I could really care less in some ways. I'm just as much a annoyance to him as he is to my low lvl seller as well. But the thing is I sell for fun, the money don't mean all that much to me since I really don't buy anything much and not a big spender. This other AH seller seems to have some form of goal maybe. As what drives a person daily to spend literally so much time manipulating AH item prices just to sell some glyphs and act that paranoid to log in literally all day long to list, delist and change prices.

Since then of recent this one seller has switched to using new lvl 1 alts to try and hide on AH with different new names. But its the same person using the same tactics. And based on log in log out tracking Ive found its the same account/seller as well. He would list and log, i would come behind him and delist and relist. That was a mini-game as well. And he did it right back to me and much more often. I just aren't got that much time to waste doing that. Neither would anyone else.

I just found one or two ways to deal with this one seller guy around, though not always as successful since as well their is a flood of glyphs sellers on the market all trying to use goblin tactics on each other. I put up several glyphs on AH whenever I feel like login on my alt to list them up. Because I just do it for fun and not a focus. Working on my character goals is my focus, wasting that much time battling with that AH seller aren't in my book of good use of time while playing the game.

I don't keep as much tabs on this seller daily anymore, not sure how much he is around daily. But when I list a few things on AH I know he is still around. I check the competition names so see who's there. He may not be as often as he used to weeks back for whatever reasons but he still logs and use all the tricks of the trade with his unusual tactics.

When everyone knows the various secrets to making money in a certain market its no longer as good as a market potential as it used to be. Still good, but its no longer a secret as the word is out and not as good as it used to be. Before long that market itself is just flooded by new players.

6 comments:

Jacob said...

Perhaps this is the new gold farmer?

Instead of spending 24 hours grinding mobs for drops, spend 24 hours grinding the AH for gold.

Sell the gold at the end of your shift, and let the next gold farmer play your characters for their shift.

J.P. Mays said...

I was thinking the same thing as Jacob stated. Also it could be someone that really has a LOT of time on their hands (i.e. unemployed, works from home, has wow access at work).

As much as I've read on the greedy goblin's blog about selling glyphs, I've made up my mind not to use that has a money making profession. I neither have the time nor the patience to deal with goblins.

I'm sure I would fall into Gelvon's M&S category. Which I'm fine with.

Darraxus said...

I make tons of money on the market against a lot of other goblins. I dont have the time to relist 10 times a day but I am getting close to the gold cap regardless.

Ardent Defender said...

@ Jacob its quite possible for a gold farmer to do as you suggest and rolling it over from one gold farm shift to another. That is entirely possible or on other servers as well.

Though in this case I believe its more the case of one particular player that just have a ungodly amount of time on his/her hands and spend allot of that time playing WoW while at it.

Gravity said...

Galo, what would make you think it is NOT a gold farmer of some kind? It reads exactly like a business of shift-workers who log onto the same account and act on set business rules /behaviours. There isn't much explanation otherwise for the 2 or 3am logons.

The weekend thing, of going away for 7 hrs so depressing it deliberately in that period while he's out in the real world or whatever, is odd and doesn't fit hypothesis of a farmer business though.

Ardent Defender said...

@ Gravity. I did suspect initially that it was either a gold farmer working in shifts or a bot of some kind.

What was a bit different was that the persons main character was a lvl 80 who only did PvP and had some top lvl PVP gear on checking the armory. The only thing the person did was PvP they never raided. So i was kinda wondering what kind of gold farmer or bot spent their time PvPing for gear?

So i figured my best bet had to be a player and one that had time to farm maybe as well as keep a hawk eye on the AH around the clock. Why? Dunno but thats what this one player does.

Last few weeks the players main has skipped server again. Just as suddenly as he appeared on server his main has transfered to another server with the same guild tag as well reformed. What he left behind was a trail of alts that all manipulate the AH around the clock. I havent been able to figure out how they get supplied for glyphs at the highest level.

Pretty much my server is depressed in the glyph market. So many players these days, everyone underbidding each other like sharks. Pretty much i'm tired of the glyph market at this point as well and slowly taking the exit door to stage left.