Resource Madness

I have seen posts and threads where Saronite has become cheaper and cheaper and since the 3.2 and 3.2.2 the AH has gone all to hell.  The major reason for this is the over demand for Titanium Ore.

Thank you Blizzard for making an already scarce resorce and making the demand for it increase many times over by allowing it to be prospected.  Additionally the dust can be turned in for JC daily badges which are required to get most of the patterns for Blue and Epic gems.

Titansteel and everything that requires Titanium to produce has now inflated greatly in price so much so that it is not really worth making the epic items becuase they sell less than the cost of the mats.

In the future if a profession changeis going to beimplemented that is going to drastically change the landscape of supply and demand then please implement alternative ways to acquire the scarce resource.

A simple change that would have let the market stabilize a bit would have been to allow Alchemists or at least Transmutation Specialized Alchemist have no cool down on the transmute Saronite into Titanium.  If nothing else at least remove the shared cool down with the epic gem transmutes.

The transmutation side of Alchemy is in apathetic state and does not look like it will get any better.  Well at least until the next expansion.  At least then the cool downs for most of the transmute in both Alchemy and Tailoring will be removed like they were for TBC materials with the release of WotLK.

Hopefully when the new expansion is released professions will actually really be worth something other than and time and money sink.  The real way to do that would be to create more interconnectiveness between the professions.

The Everchanging Playerbase

This comment on the wow forums is something that I agree 100% with and thought it would be a quick way to introduce some thoughts on the subject that will lead into my other posts mentioned in the collectors edition post.

Waxen LVL 8 Tauren Warrior from Blackhand, most likely a forum alt.

http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=20136602894&sid=1&pageNo=6#108

Maybe you’re too young to remember the evolution of MMOs, or maybe you’re just forgetting, but the big picture is a an UNCHANGING curve of play getting more and more casual. And the more that curve moves, the higher the adoption rate goes.

That curve goes back much, much further than WoW, sunshine. I was playing MMOs back in the early 90s when they had no GUI and everything was text commands. TBC, even vanilla raiding, even EQ raiding, was total QQcasual in comparison to what grouping in those was like. Back in the MUD days, MMOs were “just for Comp Sci majors with uni accounts and telnet”.

Having seen this progression over the last 16-17 years, trust me when I say that the WoW raider who whines about the QQcasual and quits in “disgust” are being replaced by folks like my retired father, my wife, and my non-gaming bro-in-law who are getting socialized to MMOing through stuff like Facebook and finally deciding that its not just for “24 year old guys with no friends and no life”.

The “not just for” statements will just keep getting more broad, the sub numbers will keep going up, and making the learning, gearing, and time-commitment process “loleasy” are the REASON for it, not an impediment.

Ok this whether we like it or not is the future of the MMO market.  MMOs will from my generation onward become a larger and larger part of entertainment media.  Will TV, Movies go away no, will there become a blending of all 3 mediums most likely is some way, shape or form.

I first started playing games on computers with Commodore 64s and VIC120s.  One of the early computers I played on for years before getting an early 286 processor computer was an Atari computer, with 2 – 5 1/4 inch floppy drives.  My first look a the web before it was a web was through Compuserve for about a month then dropped it because it was too expensive given where we lived.  I then got into the web and telnet MUDs when I hit college.  As for the “Hardcore” I did all of that on my console games years ago.  Now I do not want to or need to rehash the same grind every single game.

For example I farmed in FF-VII till most of the characters had around 230+ in most stats by logging 20-40 hours of just the undersea shinra plane with the materia that changes enemies into items for stat boosts.  I leveled several sets of master level materia through that process.  Then went to Emerald and Ruby weapon and KotR/Mime/Mime/Mimed for 20 minutes.  In FF-X I hated the mini games for the ultimate weapons so much that in the end I farmed the mobs and monster fighting arena, boss mobs, to collect enough Dark Matter to create 3-4 of my own versions of the ultimate weapons, or as close as I could get since it did not get the base double damage increase.  One of the easiest was getting the one shield after purifying the Cursed Shield in FF-VI while fighting dinos for xp.  Ended up with 4 characters level 90+ in that game before I went and ROFL-Stomped Kefka.

However now that people are doing no armor/no weapon runs these may not seem like much.  But then again I also have a (Fun versus (% chance of success) versus Reward versus My Time) evaluation and as I have gotten older the My Time portion trumps most followed by Fun.

Actually I will come back to this evaluation and may even expand upon it when I get to the grouping and new Battle.Net posts.

I really think this (F v P v R v T) can add to the Bartle (World/Players, Acting/Interacting, Implicit/Explicit) evaluations.  Wow a 7 dimension solution space gets a bit insane, however the 4 values that I discuss are variable and are in the eye of the beholder where their limits are set.

Well I have rambled enough here and there are a few interesting things I want to contemplate further before spouting off about them.

Collector’s Editions and Standard Editions

This is going to be a short and sweet post.  *

** Tangent ***

I have several other posts stewing in the back of my mind but I am working on how to synthesize them apart into such a way as to still be coherent by themselves even thought the topics are all interconnected.  A few tag lines that I have been mulling are: “Groups, Guilds and Raid IDs”, “Rewards: One arm Bandit style or Tokens”, “The new Battle.net – A New Hope or Phantom Menace”.

All of these subjects deal with how to group people, facilitate interaction and reward for “good behavior”.  They just differ as they focus on different aspects but those aspects cannot be taken completely in isolation like you can when you look at specific mechanics of a class.  I hope to have 1 if not 2 of those posts out by the end of the weekend.

*** End Tangent ***

Ok, now back to the regularly scheduled post.

There are 4 types of people who buy Collector’s Editions of new games.

  1. Avid fans of the series and want all of the extra stuff.
  2. Avid fans that only want the in-game extra assuming there is one.
  3. People who just want a collector’s edition to collect such items, the true collector’s.
  4. People who want to profit off of the other 3 buy getting an edition with the intent to sell over the SRP.

#4 in the list are essentially scalpers of boxes rather than tickets.

I am going to suggest a few things that I can hope will occur with Cataclysm, either way I am going to try and get several CEs for myself as I have multiple accounts and one for Lissanna.

There are 2 ways to ensure that something is limited as a limited edition.  Only produce a set number of copies or make it such that the limited editions can only be ordered within a given period of time.  Blizzcon is an example of the first and we see how well that works out.  It becomes a lottery of who refreshed their screen the fastest.  Ya good job there, at least the servers did not die for 2 days this time around.

The second is the best way to handle such high demand.  The only thing is that for it to work Blizzard will need to be clear and very public about when the time frame to order the CEs.

It could even be a direct Blizzard Store order exclusive, then the CE production costs can be pre-paid before the product is ever made.  Now I would hope they would still let the normal distribution channels still order the CE but that is neither here nor there.

This modification would let types 1 & 3 get what they wanted with no problems.

Now due to the popularity of ingame pets a new version of the game could be created.  You would then have Collector’s Edition (CE), Pre-order for a limited time.  Then make a Pre-Order Edition (PE or POE) this would only include the in-game extra.  This is only available before and at release.  Then you have the Standard Edition which would be all other copies of the installation material after release.  Yes there would be some POE and SE overlap for the first few weeks but that is not really a major problem, just make sure there is an extra sticker added to the box so that extra packaging does not need to be made.

The only tricky part would be to the timing of the pre-order of the CE so that all of the CEs can be produced.  Given what some people have paid for the CE off of Ebay, Blizzard would be doing right by their most avid fans by actually setting up such a system so that those that want to pay extra for the CE can get it at the price Blizzard intended and not be ripped off by scalpers.

Well that worked out to be a bit longer than I intended.