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[Column] General: Dedicated Auctioneers

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe Land of AZPosts: 16,649MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

In game economies are tricky beasts sometimes and have evolved over the years to be something quite complicated at times. We take a look at virtual auctions and dedicated auctioneers in today's column. See what you think before leaving your own stories in the comments.

Some players may have started playing MMOs back in the early days when games like Asheron’s Call did not yet have a set market system or a secure trade system. Back then, players needed a way to buy and sell items and had to use either external forums or shout their wares in cities. In the absence of a strong monetary system, shards and motes became AC’s currency.

Read more of Genese Davis's Dedicated Auctioneers.

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Associate Editor: MMORPG.com
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Comments

  • kjempffkjempff AarhusPosts: 883Member Uncommon

    None personally but have known many a player in Eq and other games who would try to buy out all of one item in order to set the market price higher and then resell the items over time for a profit. Example buying needed component for http://everquest.allakhazam.com/db/item.html?item=12456 solstice earring that just about any caster wanted.

    These guys loved the merchant aspect of a game, and a few more or less only played for that.. It was the role they played in the game. I don't recall any actually using their earning, and those I knew was not the kind who would sell for real money, they just loved the financial challenge.

    I know it might be a long shot, but imagine if there was no Auction houses but only players who like playing the merchant, banker, investor role to be a part of a game. Players running trade organizations, auctions, tradeskill alliances and so on. I know it can end horribly with gold sellers running the show but still.. We need broader definitions of roles back in mmorpgs because that is one of the things that makes a living breathing world.

    Innkeepers, Bards performing, tricksters, pickpockets. Even though only the most hardcore roleplayers are going to do this, it is all another role to enhance the experience and make a game open to more types of players. What I mean is, these things should be build into the game, should be supported by the game mechanics.

     
  • KalafaxKalafax Gainesville, FLPosts: 522Member Uncommon
    I'm one of these type of people, and would love to see these roles come back to MMOs. One reason I've played asian MMOs is because alot of the time they had merchant classes/roles that would allow you to set up your own shops, and buy for low and sell for higher( but still for cheaper then players would get otherwise from NPCs ), these littles things made the games great fun for me and I really miss being able to do that in todays games where its all about PvE/PvP combat or lazy crafting. 

    Mess with the best, Die like the rest

  • k11keeperk11keeper Kalama, WAPosts: 1,056Member Uncommon

    before they changed it and grouped all the auctions houses in ffxi into one I used to buy from one and sell on another. It was easy to figure out what items to buy and sell based off what craft guilds were available in differing cities. I had a mule in all 3 starting cities and my main character could be in jeuno easily. Also buying low level gear in the cities new cities and selling it in jeuno generally elicited a profit because people with money resided in jeuno. I also did the gardening but preferred milioncorn to the ores your friend made because it had a faster turnover and if I missed logging in a day to check my plants it wasn't a complete failure for the month.

    I wish more games were like this. It almost creates a sort of stock market minigame where you can buy and sell for profit and figure out easy ways to make money when most players go about it a different way. Most tend to ehunt for expensive items (which I did as well), craft for profit, or spend hours upon hours gathering materials for crafters only to make pennies per hour. Or they buy it or just never have any money at all.

  • SovrathSovrath Boston Area, MAPosts: 18,462Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by kjempff

    I know it might be a long shot, but imagine if there was no Auction houses but only players who like playing the merchant, banker, investor role to be a part of a game. Players running trade organizations, auctions, tradeskill alliances and so on. I know it can end horribly with gold sellers running the show but still.. We need broader definitions of roles back in mmorpgs because that is one of the things that makes a living breathing world.

    I

    well, I do believe it used to be that way. I for one preferred it.

  • maplestonemaplestone Ottawa, ONPosts: 3,099Member

    Nerf merchants!

  • pmilespmiles Federal Way, WAPosts: 383Member
    So basically, put the role playing back into MMORPGS...
  • NanfoodleNanfoodle Posts: 5,484Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Sovrath
    Originally posted by kjempff

    I know it might be a long shot, but imagine if there was no Auction houses but only players who like playing the merchant, banker, investor role to be a part of a game. Players running trade organizations, auctions, tradeskill alliances and so on. I know it can end horribly with gold sellers running the show but still.. We need broader definitions of roles back in mmorpgs because that is one of the things that makes a living breathing world.

    I

    well, I do believe it used to be that way. I for one preferred it.

    I have a RL and a family and other things I do besides MMOing. So when I log in for my 1-3hrs of play 1-2 times a week. I dont want to spend 1/2 that time trying to sell a item by yelling over and over WTS (link item). We do lose something but we gain much more with the AH. Also with gold sellers now days owning 90% of the market... gimping the players ability to sell items would just blow up most games.


    =-D Only on a forum can optimism be called bad and pessimism the good thing =-D Welcome to the internet and forums. 


  • crimsonkiriecrimsonkirie Dundee, ILPosts: 8Member

    I much prefer EQ and RO's selling methods. I mean it requires you to leave your computer on and logged in but it really just does something for me. RO also never had a way to search so you literally had to run around town looking at who was selling what and hoping for deals. I know it's a server load, keeping players online like that, but honestly how much can it possibly cost to remedy that situation? Some people became well known simply because they were always selling the same kinds of stuff. So maybe you'd look there first once you learned the population of a server.

    In all honesty? I truly miss server community. Auction houses with searches sort of break that just like cross server dungeons and raids and all that. Though that brings me off topic. So I'll leave it at that.

  • KrimzinKrimzin Fort Worth, TXPosts: 545Member Uncommon

    I have always had a lot of respect for those who have the patience and dedication to amass wealth in an MMO through the AH. Ive known a lot of players who were extremely talented and I would love to see what they could do with the stock market.

    Just because I'm a gamer doesn't mean I drive a Honda.


    It's an Orange thing
  • KrimzinKrimzin Fort Worth, TXPosts: 545Member Uncommon


    Originally posted by abby303
    Thomas. I see what you mean... Margaret`s st0rry is terrific, last week I got a brand new Jaguar E-type after having made $8299 recently and-a little over, 10 grand last munth. it's actualy the best job I have ever done. I started this 4 months ago and almost immediately startad bringin home over $82.. per-hr. I use this website, kep2.com


    SPAMMER.. Delete this shit.

    Just because I'm a gamer doesn't mean I drive a Honda.


    It's an Orange thing
  • KalafaxKalafax Gainesville, FLPosts: 522Member Uncommon
    Would definitly like to see every game have RO's type of shopping.

    Mess with the best, Die like the rest

  • KilrainKilrain Prineville, ORPosts: 684Member Uncommon
    I prefer EQ pre Luclin. "3 bags, second Torch" That was my favorite. That was me. I also loved running gambling events and REAL auctions, it required a lot of typing, but it was fun.

    professional web programming and design.

  • SovrathSovrath Boston Area, MAPosts: 18,462Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Nanfoodle
    Originally posted by Sovrath
    Originally posted by kjempff

    I know it might be a long shot, but imagine if there was no Auction houses but only players who like playing the merchant, banker, investor role to be a part of a game. Players running trade organizations, auctions, tradeskill alliances and so on. I know it can end horribly with gold sellers running the show but still.. We need broader definitions of roles back in mmorpgs because that is one of the things that makes a living breathing world.

    I

    well, I do believe it used to be that way. I for one preferred it.

    I have a RL and a family and other things I do besides MMOing. So when I log in for my 1-3hrs of play 1-2 times a week. I dont want to spend 1/2 that time trying to sell a item by yelling over and over WTS (link item). We do lose something but we gain much more with the AH. Also with gold sellers now days owning 90% of the market... gimping the players ability to sell items would just blow up most games.

    How about just having an npc or "market stall" with your prices? This will free you up to do other things. of course players might contact you in order to haggle.

  • AhnogAhnog Keller, TXPosts: 231Member Uncommon
    I'm a marketer in EVE online. It's more than "buy low, sell high." You have to know what moves and price it fairly. I pride myself on keeping prices low for the little guy.

    Ahnog

    Hokey religions are no replacement for a good blaster at your side.

  • JaedorJaedor Denver, COPosts: 1,140Member Uncommon
    I enjoy the Auction House mini game and play it in every mmo. Usually just small potatoes, but it's enough to level an army of alts through crafting and there is a fun little thrill when you acquire something really valuable for very little or flip it for a lot.
  • jocieBjocieB LondonPosts: 72Member
    Originally posted by kjempff

    have known many a player in Eq and other games who would try to buy out all of one item in order to set the market price higher and then resell the items over time for a profit.

     

    *Waves*  :)  I spend a good hour or two, post questing doing this.  Especially when the Rift AH went multiserver.  If you can be bothered being patient and trawling through the items you know are popular, it is without a doubt worth it.  Secret World is slightly different in that it's a market place not an auction house - but players consistently neglect to double check what they would get from an in-game vendor before they put an item up for sale. 

    This is gold dust to those of us who do take notice.  I regularly buy up skip-loads of items from the market place, at a lower cost, just to go and vendor them. 

    For the sake of my morality, though, I also regularly point this out in local chat in the hope it prompts players to check... after I've bought them of course ;) 

  • ScotScot UKPosts: 5,769Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by jocieB
    Originally posted by kjempff

    have known many a player in Eq and other games who would try to buy out all of one item in order to set the market price higher and then resell the items over time for a profit.

     

    *Waves*  :)  I spend a good hour or two, post questing doing this.  Especially when the Rift AH went multiserver.  If you can be bothered being patient and trawling through the items you know are popular, it is without a doubt worth it.  Secret World is slightly different in that it's a market place not an auction house - but players consistently neglect to double check what they would get from an in-game vendor before they put an item up for sale. 

    This is gold dust to those of us who do take notice.  I regularly buy up skip-loads of items from the market place, at a lower cost, just to go and vendor them. 

    For the sake of my morality, though, I also regularly point this out in local chat in the hope it prompts players to check... after I've bought them of course ;) 

    Entrepreneurism at its finest. :)

  • thecapitainethecapitaine West Chester, PAPosts: 401Member Uncommon
    One of the things I miss the most about CoX was its version of the auction house.  I got so much joy out of trying to earn a little extra money for my avatar by dabbling in it.  For a casual marketeer, it didn't require enormous amounts of knowledge but there was depth if you really wanted to corner the market or make lots of inf.
  • sunshadow21sunshadow21 Omaha, NEPosts: 354Member
    Originally posted by Sovrath
    Originally posted by kjempff

    I know it might be a long shot, but imagine if there was no Auction houses but only players who like playing the merchant, banker, investor role to be a part of a game. Players running trade organizations, auctions, tradeskill alliances and so on. I know it can end horribly with gold sellers running the show but still.. We need broader definitions of roles back in mmorpgs because that is one of the things that makes a living breathing world.

    I

    well, I do believe it used to be that way. I for one preferred it.

    Auction Houses and similar mechanics done right have a place, as relying solely on players to provide those functions creates as many problems as it solves. No AH at all would be problematic; they were eventually added to MMOs for the same reason they developed in real life; most people don't want to spend all of their time being merchants. Likewise, global AH's tend to isolate the buyer from the seller completely, hurting the community and the overall depth of the game. A setup like FFXI (at least when I played) or Eve where there are different regions, allowing for those who want to play the markets a rich environment to do so in, or even something like SWG where you could see products from a wider area, but not have it instantly delivered if it's in a different location, works well. It provides a simple interface and quick interactions for those that want that simplicity, and a deeper experience for those who enjoy playing the market.

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    Originally posted by Krimzin

    I have always had a lot of respect for those who have the patience and dedication to amass wealth in an MMO through the AH. Ive known a lot of players who were extremely talented and I would love to see what they could do with the stock market.

    It's a mini-game in and of itself.

    This one I've never really felt all that strongly about. I find individual auctioneers inefficient, but +roleplay value. Unless they're global-messaging barkers, then...ugh, just ugh.

    I find an auction houses efficient, but neutral, even negative to roleplay.

    Shops...with a searchable centralized catalog interface, please? Nothing is worse than having to hunt up what you're looking to buy on someone's offline website.

    As many compromise and unique features; ain't no perfect One True System.

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • FdzzaiglFdzzaigl Somewhere in nowherePosts: 2,328Member Uncommon

    Honestly, whatever the game and it's system, the "story" that will always return is the big divide between players (pretty much like people in the real world I guess).

    You've got people that are relatively bad at making money and are always short on it, people who are relatively decent at it and can pay for everything they need while keeping on to some leftovers and then you have the players who are covered in so much gold that they could scuba-dive in it.

    I count myself to the middle category in most games, if a game might require you to have 100 gold on you to be good, I might have a thousand. Thing is though, the latter category usually has a couple of hundred thousand up to a million.

     

    Seeing these people in action, they either spend a lot of time on the auction house (often more than playing the game), doing elaborate stuff like your friend's notebook in FFXI. Or they find a specific mechanic / farming spot to leech off of before others do.

    Either way, I respect that they're good at stuff like that, but I'd rather not play the game that way myself, or be forced to do that in order to keep up with the ones who do. That's why I dislike games build too much around economic simulation, like EVE. It's also one of the things that drove me away from SWG.

    Feel free to use my referral link for SW:TOR if you want to test out the game. You'll get some special unlocks!

  • RhinotonesRhinotones BenowaPosts: 238Member Uncommon
    When my guild fell apart in WoW I was left homeless and penniless. Many of my raiding mates decided to give another game a shot and the rest quit a few months before wrath was due to be released.
     
    To pass the time waiting for wrath and the return of some of my guildies I started messing around with the auction house. I started making small amounts of profit at first but quickly learnt a few tricks and systems that I was able master. I turned 50 gold into a few hundred and then a few thousand. I couldn't believe how easy it was to make gold.
     
    I won't bore you with details but over time I was able to single handedly Manipulate the server market. When I left wow prior to MoP I had everything you could buy in game including the mounts from trading cards etc and still had several million on my account.
     
    I still have my account sitting there today unused and with the gold in case I decide to get back into the game.
     
    For anyone interested in generating their own wealth in WoW you have to be prepared to put a lot of  time into it. Crafting (I had 3 characters maxed out on professions), is the quickest way to do it.

    image
  • jocieBjocieB LondonPosts: 72Member
    Originally posted by Fdzzaigl
    Seeing these people in action, they either spend a lot of time on the auction house (often more than playing the game), doing elaborate stuff like your friend's notebook in FFXI. Or they find a specific mechanic / farming spot to leech off of before others do.


    You make it sound like nuclear physics.  It really isn't.  And I don't spend much of my day gaming, if any, so 1-2 hours is fine with me, afterwards. 

  • barasawabarasawa Eugene, ORPosts: 274Member Uncommon

    And don't forget that having your computer tied up so you can sell stuff 24/7 also ends up with so much chat spam trying to advertise you can't even read anything important that scrolls past, or if the game gives you a market stall automation, you end up with so many vendors in town you can't even see the buildings half the time, much less move or find the NPC you want to talk to.

     

    Yeah, seen lots of games that don't use some form of auction house, and you know what, they are all a Pain in the extremities.

    Lost my mind, now trying to lose yours...

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