Wednesday, May 12, 2010

How much gold do I need for Cataclysm?

OK, this is yet another blog post with a title ending in a question mark (I'm so sorry Krizzlybear!) but I have a valid excuse for this: I don't know and I would really appreciate a bit of advice on this from someone who is a better fortune-teller than I am.

How much do you think we can expect the training costs to raise? How much should I set apart to be sure that I'm covered for the first expensive enchants and gems that I will need to be raid ready for the first instance?

I suppose it will go up, but I'm not sure myself about how steep the increasing curve was between vanilla wow, Outlands and Northrend and where we can expect it to end up if we pull the line further in the same direction in Cataclysm.

So if there's any goblin who is generous enough to give out advice for free, I'd love to hear your opinion.

Not playing the gold game
The gold game has never been a favorite of mine; it's something I just do if I have to, to cover my expenses. A pure support function and not a part of the theme park and enjoyment. I know there are others who love it and there's nothing about that. To each one his own. But personally I don't play WoW to hang around in AH or by a mail box.

Thankfully enough, making gold isn't hard these days. Mostly by selling off the saronites I get from frost emblems, I've managed to pile up about 30 000 gold. Of course the prices on sarnonite are falling for every week that passes, and as we start hardmodes the flood of frost emblems will decrease.

The question is if the little fortune I've made until this day will be enough to let me focus on leveling and exploring during the first months of Cataclysm primarily on my main and possibly also on a tempting alt of one of the new races - as opposed to spending time at AH doing business. I certainly hope so, but I'm not entirely sure, hence my question. Should I try to invest it wisely and try to bring it up a bit further to be on the safe side?

Experiences > gold
Funny enough Bigjimm at one of the how-to-make-gold profiled blogs, Phase 3: profit, wrote a post touching on this question yesterday. And he advocated exactly the opposite. According to him right here and now is when you should spend your gold, since inflation will eat it up if you hold to it anyway. And you should spend it wisely: on experiences, a philosophy he shares with Mike Schramm (although it was slightly taken out of context since Mike actually has been talking about his willingness to pay real money for experiences as opposed to sparkling horse pixels.)

I'm the first one to agree on those ideals in real life. My children have grown up in a rather simple home compared to their neighbors and friends. Not a lot of status things around in this rented flat. On the other hand they've been on memories-for-life vacations to Africa and America, and probably will go for another one to India later this year. In my world experiences > items and gold. Always.

And that's how I look on it in game as well. The only purpose of collecting gold is to spend them on doing things that are fun. However - I don't have any need to buy myself a spot in an LK run, since I'm already in a guild that does those sorts of things. (Yeah, I'm lucky).

Maybe I have a better reason than Bigjimm to be careful about my gold though. After all, as a goblin blogger, he has the knowledge, the tools and the interest to catch up again and making another fortune if he finds himself running low. To me it would be a little bit more of a hassle, even though I certainly could do it; there's plenty of good how-to-make-gold advice floating around in the blogosphere

Stocking up on mats
Some players won't stock up on either gold or experiences. They'll speculate on different sorts of materials to keep in stock and sell expensively as people are eager to level their professions in Cataclysm. That's really not my piece of cake. I would be happier if I could be disciplined enough to have a sell-out form my bank before the expansion, leaving me with plenty of bag space, which always is handy as you're leveling.

But back to my question: how much gold should I strive for to have as Cataclysm hits to be comfortable? How much are you planning to put aside? Please share your view with me!


Markus said...

This toon currently has 17K with another 3K on my bank alts, so I think that will be more than enough. My philosophy is that as long as I don't foolishly purchase from the AH, quests and kills will provide more than enough gold for the leveling process. Of course, I will take advantage of the price gouging on the new weeds I will be picking and the new potions and elixirs.

Guess I am just a goblin at heart....heh...

Gronthe said...

Suggestion for title: "Cataclysm, Gold and You, an Introspective". no question mark (?) required.

I've reached a completely random amount of approximately 10-15K gold for each of my 3 lvl 80's. I figure it'll be enough to level my professions to new max level, at which point I'll be able to make sustainable amounts to help fund my Cataclysm experiences.

Aside from gold making opportunities, I've also self-imposed a spending freeze of major purchases (epic flying, overpriced mammoths, motorcycles, gear I can get via raiding/working for it, etc).

That's the plan, I'll let you know if, come close to following through.

Aloix said...

As someone who does (very casually) play the gold-making game, I am hoping to reach cap before Cata (assuming that they raise it). I also have a couple big expenses planned somewhere (Traveller Mammoth if I decide the expense is worth it for some of the old world questing / rep farming I want to do before Cata) and Primo Saronites for Shadow's Edge (eh, just because). Right now I'm @ 150k, I think I'll be 'comfy' going into Cata with 100k.

Klepsacovic said...

I'm assuming you'll be farming the mats for your professions and not racing to get them up first. That means gold for those can be ignored for now. Class training is cheap. That leaves mounts and luxuries.

Let's assume Blizzard won't be changing the gold cap, since that would involve going pretty deep, for very little benefit. Epic mounts in vanilla were 1k, BC epic was 5k. Even assuming that is a trend, that leaves you only needing 25k to have your biggest expense taken care of. I doubt it will be that high.

Set aside 15k to not be touched until you are logged in with the Cataclysm expansion. 25k if you think you're going to want to be wasteful.

hound said...

In the Lich King expansion "raid ready" meant having a combination of 5-man blues and leveling greens.

So, what really do you need to spend your gold on?

You don't have to worry about gemming until you cap out and start running 5-mans, and even then you don't have to do any gems until your first epics.

You should have plenty of gold from leveling to be "raid ready".

I came to Northred with 1k and Karazhan tanking gear. I spent that on dps gear (plus gems and enchant materials) and have made over 2k up to level 79 without selling anything on auction house.

I suspect the only thing to worry about is if flying and swimming will have a high cost and your 30k should cover that easily (unless there are also epic versions).

lethal said...

I think you should have enough to cover the new 'Cold Weather Flying' (if there is one) and enough to help level your professions to a point where you can make money.
I plan on spamming out my JC as soon as I can, if they retain the same JC daily quest -> tokens -> recipes model, getting recipes first is the way you make your money

Rachkalos said...

Call me naive, but I can't imagine that we'll need an awful lot to get us through 5 levels and into raiding.

The big purchases these days are things like expensive mounts, or powerleveling a new profession. What else is there that's going to cost a lot? Profession leveling will come along at the same pace as regular leveling. We'll get a bit of gold from questing to cover costs as well.

The only outlay that we'll have is possibly buying new gear of the AH and I can't see that as being a major problem; if the current questing gear stops at 187-ish, and the new questing gear is going to have to follow on from that what are we going to get when we ding 85? 232? 245?

Being as quite a few of us will still be in our 264 (and 277 hopefully!) raiding gear, I can't imagine much need to upgrade all that soon.

Imoh said...

Rachkalos makes a good point, I didn't replace my t6 until I was well into Naxx, so 277 gear can be expected to last a while, especially mage tier gear, those set bonuses wont be replaced till t11 set bonuses.

Azzur said...

I think 20k will make you pretty comfortable to cover the major expenses:
- Cold-weather flying version 2.
- Some random blues and enchants at 85.
- Bigger bags.

Jen said...

I've got somewhere around 17k and I think it will be more than enough for Cataclysm. I never spend money on gear on the AH, farm most of the mats to level my professions, sell all the greys I get and auction everything that sells. I've been doing it since my first character and I never had to borrow money except the 1.5k my boyfriend gave me for epic flight at level 70 (because he was more impatient than me, I would've waited a few more weeks to make the money).

If you're planning in investing in gear or powerleveling professions... well, I still think it's enough, unless you plan on gearing more than 1 character for raids. I doubt the new flying will cost more than 1-2k gold, and fancy things like mammoths and bikes don't fall under 'need' imo.

Anonymous said...

I've done this kind the calculation for myself already, and the result is quite interesting: if i haven't forgotten something important, the exact amount of gold needed is 214.748 gold, 36 silver, 48 copper. Surely no more, hopefully no less! :-p

Anonymous said...

I don't think you have a reason to worry. If your goal is just to explore the new content, level to 85 and raid as well as roll a new alt or two, you'll need very little gold.

The new level 80 content will be accessible to people who are level 79 the day before cataclysm hits. It will be continuously accessible just as level 70 content in Northrend isn't a quantum leap up from level 69 content. For somebody like you who is geared to the teeth, having just downed the Lich King, you won't need any new gear or gems or enchants for quite a while.

If past expansions are anything to judge by, the benefit of Cataclysm-quality gems and enchants will be such that Northrend-quality will still be perfectly serviceable. You'll want to upgrade them eventually, but for leveling, I don't expect to spend anything unless there are some new, unique abilities that show up. If my main-hand enchant is just +80sp instead of +63sp, as I expect, I can wait.

The other thing to keep in mind with gems, enchants and gear is that they will be rare and expensive in the beginning and more common and cheaper with time. The most expensive time to power-level professions or re-gem and re-enchant will be the first day. Assuming we also get rare drops in the new content and recipes from rep grinding new factions, some of the best stuff will not be available until later. What all this means is that you'll have time to make money through questing and dailies and selling all the trash you collect while leveling to 85. You won't need a pile of money to get started.

The thing I expect you'll want money for is flying/swimming. I don't know what flying in Azeroth will cost or if there will be another expense for swimming mounts, but I expect it to be equivalent to slow Northrend flying: 1-2k gold up to several thousand for the faster speeds.

In other words, you'll be fine.

Larísa said...

@Markus: yeah, I bet herbalism will be profitable. I'm tailor and alchemist myself on my main - not the very best to make gold I suppose. But my resistance towards changing prof is increasing with every expansion. to reset my prof and level all the way again... I shiver at the thought of it.

@Gronthe: Yeah, that could be a title if I had any clue about it myself. But else it would be false marketing. Powerlevel professions early... yeah might be an idea. However I'll want to level my toon asap to get ready for raiding. So I'm not sure I'll want to put in the time for it.

@Aloix: Wow, that's quite a sum you have there! I've got no desire myself for a traveller mammoth, thankfully enough. My gnome just doesn't fancy the hairy beasts for some reason. And I don't think Shadow's Edge is for me either :) So no big expenses on that side.

@Klepsacovic: I like your prophecy. It sounds as if I'm done with gold collecting in Wrath.

@Hound: well you might ask yourself how expensive the flying and possibly swimming will be. But I reckon they can't put it too high in order to cater to the new players they hope will jump on the game, who haven't had the opportunity to buld up a fortune over time.

@Lethal: thanks, I hope you're right.

@Rachkalos: what might cost a bit is gems and enchants, but not that much until I reach 85 and the mats for gear improvement probably still are expensive.
If I change profession that will be expensive, but it's too early to tell now if I will. I'm not very keen on it though.

@Imoh: hm... my memory fails me; I can't quite remember when I replaced my T6 in cata. But yeah, I remember that I quested for ages and didn't get that much useful gear for doing so.

@Azzur: thanks for the estimations!

@Jen: no, I don't buy much of luxuries. I've bought a couple of vanity pets, but absolutely none of the most expensive and exclusive ones. The question is how much gems, enchants and such will cost. But hopefully I'll get by with what I have now.

@Anonymous 1: Ouch. That sounds kind of expensive. Are you sure about this?

@Anonumous 2: it's true that it will go down eventually, the question is how fast. I remember when the first epic gems arrived in Wrath. I got one through the daily fishing quest and I sold it at AH for almost 1 k gold!

Fitz said...

@ Larisa - you just revealed one big thing you will need money for. Herbs! Alchemy will be a big money sink to level without being able to pick herbs, but other than that, everyone has it covered. I suspect Old World Flying will be around 1-2k gold, but the Upgrade to 310% speed which will be available will likely be a luxury item in the 10k range if I had to guess.

I wrote my list entry on goals for cata a while back, but I do know I want epic flight on all my toons (3 to go) and then a small bankroll because there's always some minor leveling expenses such as professions. The quicker you level professions, the quicker you make money in most respects.

Tailoring bags makes me most of my cash, and I do not expect that to change, although I recently got a max'd J/C to play around with.