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First of all, I would like to say that I play MMO's since around 12 years ago.
My first MMO was Runescape. From my point of view, RS is the best sandbox game , even in does days.
Anyway, in RS there was no AH, so if you wanted to sell or buy something, you should have stayed in Varrock ( if I am not mistaken ) and spam the chat with your selling or buying message. Spam I mean something like this :
This is actually from RS 2 with improved graphics then RS Classic, but you got the .. picture ( chat picture ) .
So in the end, if you were a pretty active player and had like 4 hours of game time sesion a day, at least 1+ hour you kinda needed to not play the game and stay to sell/buy things you earned. I remember staying with hours , just to sell and buy things.
My second MMO was MU Online. Same as RS ( and other games from that time ) , it didn't had an AH. So the only way to sell/buy things, was to trade with other players = spam THAT chat .
But we evolved and trade spam chat with WTS, WTB, WTT is a think of a past. You may say that those are actually MMO's where Diablo 3 is not. Well, that's true, but we are discussing just the trade option ,hence chat spam. Also, keep in mind that D3 is an action combat game, where you actually depend on every second in combat, to kill the mobs. Now picture yourself playing D3, with bunch of mobs near you and then you see an !WTS line on the chat log , with an item which you need it. How cool is that, to hurry and kill the mobs, then find a "safe spot" , just to PM the seller. Or more so, maybe you will try killing mobs and chat in the same time. Oh, yes! You may die ( big chances if you play on high MP ) and then i'll be sorry ... about your keyboard. Or more so, ok , let's say you will just find a way to chat and kill mobs, or tele to town and speak with the seller. Good , good , but ... what happens if you and the seller, have 5 stacks of nephalem? Who's gonna invite and who's gonna accept?
The point is D3 needs the Gold AH. I 100% agree about the removal of the RMAH, but not with the gold one. Diablo 3 is a game where when you start a run, you kinda can't really stop and "do'da'trade" . The AH was doing the ... selling thing for us, while we were killing hordes monsters, which helped a lot.
The removal of the Gold AH ( beside the RMAH ) , can be because most of the powerful items will be BOP. If that will be the case, then i'll not play D3 anymore as getting drop in D3 and selling them, it is a feature I enjoy a lot ( and not only in D3 ) .
All in all , I think Blizzard should re-consider their plans when it comes to Gold AH.
We will surely be seeing more news about D3 , including the trade system at Blizzcon, but still ... the removal of the Gold AH will be there on March 2014.
If the trade system starting March 2014 will be ala D2, then happy .... killing/trading/typing/typing/!WTS/!WTB/!WTT .....etc "job"
Reporter: What's behind Blizzard success, and how do you make your gamers happy?
Blizzard Boss: Making gamers happy is not my concern, making money.. yes!