Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Do You Consider Crafting as Spending?

I find the above question to be an interesting one because it really can be read in different ways.  I think a persons perspective on it would change based on where they are coming from in game and maybe even in real life as well.

Someone in my guild mentioned something about the price of flasks on the auction house and I replied, I never worry about the price because I make my own.  This is completely true. 

Ever since I first started the game, even before I had a max level character, my intention was to be self sufficient.  I wanted to make sure I never needed to buy something that I would be capable of making it on my own.  Sure I would then need to invest time instead of gold but to me that is what playing the game was all about, investing time.

You either invest the time trying to make gold so you can buy the things you need or you invest the time to build up your personal network so you do not need to buy them at market prices and can make it yourself.  No matter how you look at it, making gold or making items, you are still investing time to get the item.

They then asked a follow up question, why don't I make extra flask to sell, and that is what got me thinking.  I really don't make extra to sell because I am not actually in need of gold.  I never, or should I say rarely, ever set out specifically to make gold because I feel I have enough for what I want.  But sometimes when I hear things are going for outrageously stupid prices I will make a few extra to sell because why the hell not.

If I were to think about it as "what if I bought" the stuff I made for myself instead of investing my time, what would it cost me?  Lets just take the other night.  I got a new cloak, which the enchant for it sells at 6K, I made it myself.  I used two flasks that night which cost 200 gold each on the auction house, I made those myself.  I used maybe a stack of healing tonics which go for about 5 gold each meaning 100 gold, which I made for myself and a stack of potions, which go for 30 gold each which means 600 gold, and I made them myself as well.  So if I actually went out and spent money for the night I would have spent over 7,000 gold for one nights raiding and it cost me nothing.  Nothing but time of course.

It made me think about the people that do not have their own enchanter, their own alchemist, and their own first aid leveled.  They would be out of their pocket over 7K for the night whereas I spent nothing.

I have been so self sufficient for so long and I do not mind the time it takes to level the professions and make sure I have the materials because to me that is just part of playing the game.  I actually like leveling professions and knowing that I can make anything I ever need for myself.  I am never going out of my way to get these things, they just come to me during my general playing of the game.  But being I have been so self sufficient for so long I think I lost touch with how expensive this game has become for those that are not.

I never know what the prices for enchants are on the market because if I need one I make it.  I never know what the prices are for gems on the market because if I need one I make it.  Even with the new 30 slot bags when a friend told me they are 12K on the market I said, are you kidding me, I just made one for my hunter today, it only takes a few days to make one, how can they be so expensive.

Then he said, effectively you just spent 12K on that bag.  I said, no I didn't, I made it with materials I had anyway as I leveled tailoring and I was not using them for anything else so if I did not make something with them it would have gone to waste.  And that is where we differed and I wonder which side of the line people think on in regards to things like this.

He said if I sold it I would have made 12K.  So by using it that means it is the same as if I spent 12K on it.  He does have some logic to his thinking.  If I sold it I could have sold it for 12K, then waiting 3 months and when the market is flooded with them buy 4 for the price I sold the one for.  But like I said, if I did that it would thinking of making gold, and I rarely think that way.  I thought more along the lines of, oh my god I need more bag space.

So do you think of it as spending money when you craft something for yourself?

Using the bag as an example, if you used the bag would you consider it as spending 12K?

New topic, or call it a tip if you will.

A couple of weeks ago before the raids opened when a guild mate mentioned he was going to craft some gear for himself I gave him a tip.  Don't craft gear for yourself.  Sell everything instead and wait for the raid to open up.

He had multiple barns running, some crafters, and other support characters running.  He took my advice.  He started selling savage bloods, some crafted pieces, anything he could sell.

Now he has purchased every single 665 BoE, 670 BoE and 676 BoE that he can get his hands on from the market and is still making gold hand over fist selling the savage bloods instead of using them to upgrade the crafted gear he never made, on my advice to ignore it.

He said thank you for the tip and is now much better geared than if he has crafted the gear for himself.

The thing is, this tip still works, but the market is drying up for it.  Do not craft yourself crappy gear and then spend a million and one resources to upgrade it.  Craft the base 640 / 630 stuff, sell it cheap, and sell all those savage bloods and sorcerous elements to the people that want to upgrade a 640 to a 655 and use their gold to buy a 676 instead.  Trust me, you will be the winner in the end.

There is a time to craft for yourself to save money, and a time to sell everything and buy later.  Blizzard, with the excessive amount of materials needed for crafted gear and the much better item level BoEs out there, basically made the decision for you.  Sell low level items, buy high level ones.  Enjoy.


  1. I like crafting. I actually enjoy levelling up the professions and make for my alts.
    I feel Blizz has put a slant on crafting that is geared towards selling on the AH. I feel Blizz has lost the plot, in not keeping crafting to make gear and items for use by the crafter and the alts.
    I would love it if carfting kept pace with levelling, so that a crafter could make the appropriate level goods for use by that character. I could go on about this. It saddens me that crafting is now just an after thought thrown into the game.

    1. I would have liked to see some standard crafting patterns that did not require a special crafting material.

      Seems like their idea to tie it so much to the garrisons actually hurts it in the long run, in my opinion. Crafting has been in a bad place, at least in my opinion, since cataclysm when they sped up leveling so much that it became hard to keep your professions leveled with you. I always enjoyed doing that when leveling alts, and I have a lot of them. So you are not alone in doing that.

  2. I've read a few gold making articles/blogs etc. occasionally over the time I've been playing Warcraft, whenever I wanted something expensive in game either straight bought from a vendor, or with vendor mats. They all said what you said in your article that time = money. That all the things I thought were free, because I provided them for myself, actually weren't because of what I could have sold them for.

    I never bought into that mentality. I have all the professions but when they went in Mists to daily cd and learn a random recipe, I stopped being able to easily/quickly learn what I needed. However, soon enough between me and my friend, we covered everything that we needed and we just mailed uncut gems to one another with a "make x" and then got back the cut ones, same with enchants, same with anything like that.

    I did sometimes buy a gem from the AH but only if I felt the price was reasonable and I absolutely had to have it then. In which case I was paying for my impatience which fair enough.

    I have crafted myself 3 pieces, I didn't even look at what they were selling at to be honest. I also crafted myself the engineering pets, and I've made 2 of them again and sent them to a friend for free, which is stupid as I will never make gold that way and I do want to make gold, I want the Yak mount and the Jewelcrafting mounts (I have 2/4) but that's just the way I am. I don't think in terms of "I could make gold doing this".

    I've only tried to make gold once, belt buckles earned me enough for the crafted chopper mount but I gave up trying to make gold after that. This was something I went after specifically and I just gave up after that.

    You know it didn't even occur to me to see what the crafted gear was selling for. I guess that's why I'll never make a ton of gold, I just don't think that way.

    1. I make gold the way you sort of said, when I need it I go out and make it. Even without trying, just by being active and sometimes selling some extra stuff here and there I usually have a fair deal of gold on me. Even my alts seems to have over 30K or 40K and we are talking characters that do nothing but get to max level and sit there. In the grand scheme of things even that 30K is more than the majority of players.

  3. I'm bad at making gold, but I have 5 Hordies and 5 Allies. Each of them has their unique profession kit within faction which allows me to provide all the stuff by myself. And there's a sheer magic of resource flow too. T.ex. when 5 mines (even if level 1) work for one jewelcrafter, in 2 or 3 days she's provided with ore so good that she doesn't know where to put it save making all necessary orders.

    For now all the things that I craft are made to dress up my chars, so I even don't think about AH yet.

    I enjoy leveling professions and learning new recipes, so that's the focus now.

    1. If you have all the professions you do not need to be good at making gold. Most of the time you will be able to take care of yourself so the need for gold is greatly diminished. Even more so if you are willing to go out and do the work yourself to get whatever you might be missing. Gold is only needed for people that either do not want to go out of the way to make it themselves or are too lazy to do so. At least that is how I see it. Unless of course you are a mount collector and but a lot from the BMAH, then yes, you will need lots of gold. lol

  4. I think you hit the nail on the head when you said you don't think of it because you don't need it, but you also recognize the concept of opportunity cost (the economic term for it) in your advice to your friend at the beginning of the expansion. Everything has a cost associated with it even if you don't spend gold on it because it is the opportunity cost that you could have made gold with it. A large portion of players think that if they farm something it is free, but the mats they farm are worth something so the mats themselves aren't really free it's just that they paid with their time to acquire them. Most gold makers will generally tell you that you need to look at all costs associated with something to determine true profit. You can take X materials and make Y item and make money, but if it was possible to use those same X materials and make Z which would have made you more than you didn't make the best use of your materials. At times the materials themselves are worth more than anything you can make with them so the best thing to do is just sell the materials.

    I've been like you in that I tend to not worry about the gold I could have made when it comes to leveling my professions because I want them leveled so that I can be self sufficient, but there is still a very high cost to that early in an expansion. I always think of the cost, sometimes I just value the result more.

    1. I could easily see how someone can see it as it is free. They are using materials they already have, they are using a skill they already leveled, so basically it is free, to them.

      Like the case of my bag. I would never in a million years spend 12K for a bag, but using 10 days worth of cloth cooldowns to make one for myself is a price I am willing to pay. Even if I did not have the cloth and had to go out and get it I would be more than happy to go grind the cloth because in my opinion making it myself is still miles cheaper than 12K. But I know there is a cost to it, the cost that I "could" have made that money if I sold it, or the cost of time spent to get the materials if I had to go out of my way to do so.

      My favorite thing to do, and I did it many times, is to buy the materials off the market and then craft something. The materials could cost, for example, 2K when the item itself sells for 6K. Why pay 6K when I can buy the materials and even if I had to throw someone a 200 gold tip to make it I would still be saving money.

      One of these days I might try to make money at the start instead of kick starting my own personal profession network. But the way I look at it, the faster I can make myself self sufficient, the better position I am in all expansion long. And in the end the gold means nothing. If I wanted to make some it is not that hard. Just put my time there instead of my time into something else.

  5. Bags are 6k on my realm. I'm jealous.

    1. If they went down to around 3K I would just buy them. Personally that is what I value them at in terms of me making them. Once they go less than that I would consider it worth buying instead of making.