The Warcraft Econ Hall of Fame interviews the few elite players that have hit the World of Warcraft gold cap of 999,999 gold 99 silver 99 copper as well as ones who have obtained 500k and 250k. We have with us, Soco of Quel’Thalas-EU, who will be sharing their story with us today.
Please tell us a little about yourself and your gaming experience.
I play the character Soco on Quel’thalas EU. She’s a sexy little (unfortunately abandoned) Death Knight. She handles most of my auction housing needs. I’ve played WoW since early in Vanilla mainly focusing on PvE. I enjoy playing console games. Having tried several other MMOs nothing has held my attention like World of Warcraft.
Do you raid or PvP most? Both? How do you enjoy the game?
I primarily PvE. Having raided on my main (my priest) throughout each tier of content since early TBC. I raid three nights a week on my main with the occasional alt run or pug on my shaman on the weekend. Prior to that (during Vanilla) I raided on a protection warrior. PvP makes me ‘nerdrage’ too much for it to be enjoyable. (Actually it’s the other people that make me rage too much. If I could solo WSG or AB I’d possibly really like it.)
Why did you choose to collect this amount of gold?
It all started with the Feat of Strength “Insane in the Membrane” (which I believe is a common factor in several gold makers). I went into it blindly thinking I’d be able to farm all of the mats required however after three hours farming I only had enough herbs to craft two or three Darkmoon Faire cards (turned in for reputation). I quickly realized what I’d got myself into and how long it would actually take me to obtain the materials needed. With my newly acquired information I hit up the Auction House but only having 7000g to my name I came to the conclusion that I was going to need more gold. Lots more gold. When I finally got my “The Insane” title I had over 100K and eventually obtained the original gold cap of 214K gold.
Anyone or resource you would like to thank?
I’d like to thank my fiance for having listened to me harping on about gold (something he has little interest in). Good deal on the AH? He’s the first person to hear about it. Someone bought something for a crazy high price? I make sure to tell him about it in my excitement.
I’d also like to thank my friend Sam who (even without playing WoW anymore) encouraged me to keep going. In the beginning he’d ask my total or how much I’d made that day. When I’d reply he’d push for more. “15k more by the weekend.” I don’t know what would happen if I didn’t meet his targets but I’m not going to ignore the threats of an undead rogue. <3
Lastly I’d like to thank the gold-making community as a whole. Namely flux of Power Word: Gold. The response and help I’ve had via twitter and e-mail has been simply amazing. The gold-making community of twitter welcomed me with open arms when I started posting. Specifically Nev (@NevAHAddict), Gimp (@GimpsGold) and flux (@PowerWordGold). They’re an amazing bunch.
How did you go about getting to this gold amount?
Mainly professions. I’m a self-diagnosed Altaholic. This means profession slots. Lots of them.
I have two Jewelcrafters. My main has JC mainly for the gem bonus as a raider. My other JC is the one with the majority of the pattens. I continue to do my daily JC quest on both in hope that epic gem patterns are purchasable with the tokens. I’ve been largely involved in the Obsidium Shuffle following it though all stages such as prospect > craft rings > DE and prospect > transmute > cut gems.
4.2 added some PvP rings and necks to Jewelcrafting. I’ve been selling 2-3 Bloodthirsty Amberjewel Pendants and Bloodthirsty Sapphire Necklaces per day. (This has been a nice outlet for some of the rare gems which don’t sell as quickly and have a tendency to pile up.)
I have four Alchemists. Three are transmute specced and one elixir specced (though I also dabble in potions). Transmute: Living Elements is something I do daily on all four alchemists. Volatile life is around 3g each on my server while Volatile Air sits around 19g each.
I sell all Cataclysm flasks apart from Flask of Flowing Water (as the few times I have tried to sell these I’ve had little luck). I find Mythical Mana Potions and Potions of the Tol’vir are also great sellers.
Blizzard’s implementation of enchanting scrolls was immense. It led me to actually start using my enchanter for more than DE’ing junk. Being able to disenchant items created during the Obsidium Shuffle will increase your profits.
During wrath most of my Scrolls sold were twink enchants or enchants which could be used on Bind on Account items. Crusader, Fiery Weapon and Agility on weapon were my best selling enchants and still sell. If you don’t have some of these older Azeroth enchants yet check your server’s prices. The reputation’s to obtain them are very easy now.
As far as Cataclysm enchants Mighty Stats (chest) has been my best selling enchant by far. It sells for 140g per scroll and only requires two Lesser Celestial Essence. Enchanting is an excellent profession. Don’t always focus on the end game (Maelstrom Crystal enchants for example). Mid-level Cataclysm enchants are often more attractive to regular players not looking to spend a lot of gold on enchants. If you have a friend you trust or a second account selling Enchanted lantern/ Magical lap to the opposite faction via the Neutral AH is a great way to make gold. There are several posts out there with details of how to get your gold back to your main faction.
These crafting professions have served me well. They also help to break things up a little. The Obsidium Shuffle can get very boring if it’s the only thing you do to make gold.
While I’m on a PVE server the Bloodthirsty Pyrium set has been a great seller for me as it can be used by Warriors, DKs and Paladins. I’ve had little luck with the Ornate plate healing set as only Holy Paladin’s can make use of this.
Enchanting rods have been a constant seller (especially some of the harder to obtain ones such as Arcanite Rod and Eternium Rod). Having leveled Enchanting on the Alliance recently I couldn’t find either of these (for blood nor gold)!
Ebonsteel Belt Buckles are a pretty staple part of making gold with Blacksmithing. The mat’s are easy to come by and it’s something everyone needs.
Cobalt tanking set. The cobalt level 70 tanking set has been an excellent seller for me. I sell out of whole sets every day or two. Avoid the pieces which would have their slots taken up by Heirloom Items (head, chest and shoulders).
Tailoring has possibly been one of my least used professions. Having posted the same cloth PvP set daily for almost three weeks I quickly retreated to what I was used to: bags! With Cataclysm came the release of bags which can be purchased with reputation (in your factions capital cities at Revered). There was some speculation that these bags would kill the bag market but this has been far from true on my server. If bags are something you’d given up on I’d suggest taking another look at them.
Dreamcloth. I tend to play it safe with my Dreamcloth by sticking entirely to leg armors.
Much like Tailoring (although this is a profession I’ve only recently picked up) is one I don’t use enough. Leg armors (not only the epic quality but also the blue quality Cataclysm leg armor patches) sell amazingly well after your faction wins Tol Barad (or after raid time). The agility leather PVP set is a constant seller for me. Check your server’s prices first.
I sell Engineering pets (like the De-Weaponized Mechanical Companion, Pet Bombling and Mechanical Tranquil Yeti). Once a week I send my Engineer 50 Volatile Air (from my alchemist) to craft Electrified Ether (these typically sell for around 24g each allowing for a little variety in the mass quantity of Volatile Air I’m producing each week). I’ve crafted and sold several Mechano-Hog’s (although these can be risky as you have to invest a fair amount of gold into them). Now that the Goblin racial has been fixed (nerfed!) I’ve stopped selling these as the return is too little.
Glyphs, glyphs and more glyphs. Inscription is something I don’t take very seriously. I let TradeSkillMaster (TSM) do most of the work for me only restocking glyphs every few weeks. I generally only stock 2-3 of each glyph. Having done the Darkmoon Faire reputation for both myself and a friend via Inscription has instilled me with a loathing of the profession especially milling. *Grrr* Milling. It’s an excellent gold maker though. I’ve heard on some servers it can be pretty cutthroat as players attempt to claim the market for themselves. This is something I (thankfully) haven’t encountered.
Selling vendor bought pet’s and recipes can be a great gold maker whether you have 8g or 200kg. It’s something I experience a bit of a moral dilemna with. I love seeing a Winterspring Cub sell for 200g but what if that poor person has no gold? What if he’s new and just doesn’t know about tools like Wowhead? It makes me a little bit sad (at least until I empty his gold out of my mailbox).
What is your master list?
By far my best sellers and items that I make sure to have in stock constantly are:
- Inferno Ruby: I keep most of these uncut as the price of Brilliant, Delicate and Bold fluctuate wildly. When crafting gems I craft several of whichever is most profitable at that moment.
- Shadowspirit Diamond (metas): Agile, Burning, Ember.
- Ocean Sapphire – Solid, Sparkling.
- Ember Topaz – Reckless, Potent, Lucent, Resplendent.
- Dream Emerald – Puissant, Regal.
- Demonseye – Sovereign, Glinting, Purified, Defender’s
- Amberjewel – Mystic, Fractured, Quick.
- Volatile Air.
- Netherweave bag.
- Cataclysm Flasks.
- Enchant Chest – Mighty Stats as well as Mastery enchants on any slot.
What items are in your Snatch list?
While I haven’t taken the time to actively set up a snatch list Auctionator saves your searches. If it’s something I don’t generally search for I’ll use the default AH window otherwise I check the Autionator buy tab. Here are a few items I regularly search for and/or buy.
- Elementium/Obsidium/Pyrite ore.
- Volatile Life
- Inferno Ruby (as well as other Cata gems).
- Scarlet Ruby (Scarlet Rubies are something I buy when I can find them under 20g. I frequently sell cut Brilliant/Bold/Delicate rubies for 45-60g. These sell because Burning Crusade and Wrath gear cannot use Cataclysm gems. Solid Sky Sapphire sells for the same reason.)
- Savage leather
- Large Brilliant Shard (for use in twink enchants).
How did you learn to do it?
It all started with needing gold for my Feat of Strength. The AH was something I rarely visited only selling a few cloth or greens from doing my daily Heroics.
As I was checking the AH every day for Herbs, Large Brilliant Shards and Eternal Life I started to notice trends. There were more herbs at the weekend. With more people (seemingly) running instances in the evening shard’s were more plentiful. Instead of buying Eternal Life I would buy Frozen Orbs to trade in for Eternal Life to create Darkmoon Faire cards (if the orbs were cheaper). After I achieved the Feat of Strength it was something I just continued to do (replacing Eternal Life with Eternal Fire as it was the most expensive selling Eternal). I’d buy herbs/ore in bulk in trade chat for a cheaper price than the AH.
I then turned to professions. I had most professions covered over all of my characters but I’d never actively used them after hitting 450. With my new desire for gold I started to think about how I could get my hands on more. I knew I spent gold but on what? Gems! Gems, enchants and flasks. I decided to start using my professions to sell to people like me. People who bought stuff!
Around the time of hitting the original gold cap I started to discover this whole new world of gold blogs. I picked up a few more tips and strategies and from there it snowballed.
What addons, if any, do you use to help you make gold and why are they needed?
Needed is a fairly strong word. Having a bit of an aversion to addons (as they weren’t often required in Vanilla) means they’re not something I use a lot of even now. I do have the basics though for making gold. It is possible to play the AH game without addons (4.1 panic anyone? I manually posted glyphs for around an hour before I found an alternative to Quick Auctions.) though they do make the whole thing a lot easier!
Auctioneer – I use this for buying or selling items I’m not familiar with. The Pct (%) feature on Auctioneer is brilliant when you’re first starting out. It’s also great for items you’re not sure of (providing you scan regularly). The resale/milling/DE tabs can take a bit of getting used to in the beginning (as the resale tab is often filled with Glass of Cold Milk on my server) and it’s not something I’d suggest diving straight into as a beginner.
Auctionator – This is an addon I recently started using and I adore it. The Buy/Sell tabs are clean and uncomplicated. Being able to search for Inferno Ruby and see not only the uncut price but the price of every cut Inferno ruby on the AH all on one window is a massive time saver compared to the default Auction House window.
Tradeskillmaster – I don’t use this addon enough. It’s potential is mind blowing. I use it mainly for glyphs (like most other people). The crafting and posting options are amazing.
Lil’ Sparky’s Workshop – I’ve used this addon for years and it’s something I’ve stuck with. I don’t use TSM on my characters who aren’t such big players in the Auction House and LSW fits my needs perfectly for blacksmithing and tailoring.
Postal – This makes life so much easier in so many ways!
Are you still going for more gold? If so, do you have a new goal? Are you close?
I’ve been undecided on this topic for a few weeks now. After I hit 1million I completely stopped buying or selling. I was down to having around 12 gems, no flasks and I didn’t do a single transmute (Horde side anyways). I turned my focus to Alliance! I had two abandoned level 80s rotting away with around 2000g between them. I decided to pick up Jewelcrafting/Alchemy on my Rogue and Inscription/Enchanting on my Warlock. The price difference on each side is definitely noticeable. Having half-heatedly joked with a friend I’d go for 1M on Alliance side part of me actually wants to do it (although I’ve since started making gold again Horde side). Perhaps I’ll go for 2M horde (or 1M each side). I’m not quite sure yet. Gold-making has become a habit now. It’s part of my routine. Checking the AH for Elementium Ore or Cinderbloom is just something I find myself doing without thinking about it. It’s not something I’ll ever completely stop doing.
Do many people know you have this amount of gold?
A few closer friends know I hit 1M. Some guildies know I’m involved in making gold. As I tend to prospect ore or make rings during down time in raids. Time is money friend? This has led to a few questions being asked (although no one really knows exactly how much I now have).
Did you spend your gold on fun things? What have you bought?
Funny enough I actually bought most of the fun items prior to getting into gold-making. I wanted to get the 100 Mounts achievement before “The Insane” was released so I bought my bike, mammoth and Kirin Tor ring long before I started to make serious gold.
I’d like to buy a Vial of the Sands simply for the achievement although I hate the look of the mount. It’s a horrible dragon!
I’d love it if they included more stuff to buy with gold. Since there’s no achievements for earning gold being able to buy something really flashy and obnoxious would be fun. Alternatively making TCG loot mounts available for insane amounts of gold would be awesome or gear re-colouring.
If you were the professor of a gold making 101 college class, what would be some things you would talk about?
Diversification is something that gold-makers discuss so often you almost get tired of hearing about it but it’s one of the most important things you’ll learn along the way. Having found myself recently competing against someone using a second account to post gems almost 24/7 I realized sometimes there is some competition I just don’t want to compete with. As a raider (and someone who detests sitting in a city camping the AH) I was thankful for having other markets to fall back on (while being able to do other things in game outside of a city).
How about an advanced gold making class?
Knowledge is by far one of the most powerful tools in your gold-making arsenal. Posting the right thing at the right time is vital in making gold. Knowing when guilds on your server start and finish raiding will help you identify these times. You could post 40 flasks on a Saturday afternoon and sell a couple but selling them an hour before the majority of people on your server start raiding will net you far more sales.
Do you have any good farming strategies or spots?
Farming isn’t something I do much. I occasionally use my engineer to farm Mote of Air (with her Zapthrottle Mote Extractor) in Nagrand (as Primal Might sell extremely well for me). When there are no gas clouds up I’ll farm the Storming Wind-Rippers (Air Elementals) at the Throne of Elements.
I also farm Azshara’s Veil on my Drud in the waters around Tol Barad Peninsula (when there is little or none on the auction house at a price I’m prepared to pay). I find farming very dull unless it involves reputation.
What was the best deal you ever came across?
I’ve never had any stupendous deals that I can recall. I buy things I know I can sell/craft for profit. This is something that comes with time and practice.
Do you remember any of your worst deals?
Nothing horribly bad thankfully! Late in Wrath I did purchase two pairs of plate healing legs which I thought I would be able to flip. I bought them at around 2k each thinking I could sell them for at least 4k. Sadly I was mistaken due to it being late in the expansion and being a bit of a niche item (plate healing legs which only one class and spec could benefit from). After a few weeks of posting I ended up selling them both for a little less than what I’d paid for them.
What are your future plans with WoW?
I’ll continue playing. I’ve made a couple of new friends recently who I enjoy raiding and chatting with. I fell one short of having 10 level 80’s at the end of Wrath. I’m determined to have 10 level 85’s before the end of Cataclysm. I really enjoy leveling. Seeing the game from different aspects definitely keeps me interested.
What are you predictions for the future WoW economy?
There’s been a bit of speculation floating around recently that epic gems may be coming in the next patch (4.3). While there hasn’t actually been any confirmation of this it will certainly give the jewelcrafting market a bit of a revival. Compared to many I have what I’d consider a small stockpile of Pyrite Ore taking up just over a tab worth of guild bank space. It will be interesting see what happens with epic gems (like if they can be obtained from prospecting Pyrite Ore, etc.).
The inflation that’s happened since Vanilla is crazy. I have a level 20 Priest with over 200g having only sold items I’ve picked up while questing as well as quest rewards. This should mean that people new to the game are also able to earn this amount of gold (hopefully leading to fewer and fewer people buying gold) which is a good thing.
Thank you for taking the time read and feel free to follow me on Twitter @SocoWow