Tag Archives: Enchanting

Abyssal Shatter Test Results

When we first received word that the Abyssal Shatter enchanting spell would be coming to the game we asked our resident enchanting expert if she would be interested in conducting some testing on the ability. She was keen on the idea so we sent a whole bunch of gold over and told her to get busy. A week later, when we hadn’t heard from her, we realized she took this to mean ‘free shopping spree’ and not ‘collect Abyss Crystals’ so we gave her more specific instructions and yet more gold with which to buy up inexpensive Crystals. Shortly after the Abyssal Shatter ability went live we had our results (and she still had her motorcycle). At any rate, the following are the results of our tests.

This chart shows the results of each shatter (click it for larger image)

Abyssal Shatter Test Results

Detailed Results

Number of Crystals Shattered: 128
Cosmic Essence Returned: 89
Infinite Dust Returned: 39
Percent Chance to Receive Essence: 69.53%
Percent Chance to Receive Dust: 30.47%

Cosmic Essence Results

Lowest Amount Received: 1
Highest Amount Received: 6
Average Amount Received: 2.99
Total Amount Collected: 266

Infinite Dust Results

Lowest Amount Received: 7
Highest Amount Received: 19
Average Amount Received: 9.79
Total Amount Collected: 382

We hope you find this information useful for your own enchanting purposes. Please note that all published results are from live servers and not test realms.

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Abyssal Shatter

The Enchanting ability, Abyssal Shatter, was hotfixed onto EU servers this morning.  This ability allows for conversion of Abyss Crystals into either Infinite Dust or Greater Cosmic Essence.  If the spell results are left unchanged, there will be significant economic impact.

Shattering crystals requires an enchanting skill of 445 and can reportedly yield as many as 18 dusts or 4 essences.

Prices are already starting to move on EU servers to reflect the above stated changes.  Players on US servers have somewhat of an advantage here in that, since they did not yet receive the hotfix, they have an early warning of the impending change.  US early adapters will be able to play a bit of insider trading and move the markets before they move themselves.

It is worth noting that there will also be some trickle down consequences on related enchantment materials markets such as enchanted vellums and other items that require these materials but this change may require more time to take effect. 

Over the long haul, it would be our expectation that the prices of Infinite Dust, Greater Cosmic Essence and Abyss Crystals will all normalize such that the price of 1 Abyss Crystal, 15-18 Infinite Dust, and 2-3 Greater Cosmic Essence all equal about the same amount.  Until this happens, however, there will be ample opportunity to take advantage of price disparity.

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The Secondary Market of Titanium

As we discussed a few days ago, Titanium Ore prices are at an all time high. As a result, the going rate for Titanium Bars is also experiencing a surge.

The WoWenomics team was discussing this price spike the other night when the conversation took an interesting turn. Our resident enchanting expert mentioned that he is seeing some benefit from the Titanium rush as it has allowed him to double his normal price for the vellums of Enchant Cloak- Titanweave that he regularly sells. He usually stocked about 20 Titanium Bars of which the enchant only requires two so he is still working off his stock but even if he had to purchase the bars at the AH at today’s high prices he would still be reaping a hefty profit. He presumes that players are willing to pay the higher prices because they assume that his costs for materials must have skyrocketed so the premium must be fair. The high Titanium prices, he says, also have the additional benefit of driving away competing enchanters who are, apparently, hesitant to spend the gold on the inflated Titanium thus further allowing him to dominate the market.

This revelation prompted our Blacksmith to speak up and say that he’s doubled the fee he requests for selling his Titansteel Bar cooldown to 30 gold. He told us that other blacksmiths will do it for less, and some potential customers balk at the higher price, but that he still sells the cooldown on any night he wishes to do so without too much effort. He is also making money from crafting and selling Titanium Rods and shield spikes at inflated prices and further reported a sharp decrease in the amount of competitors in both markets.

The engineer says his Titanium built items are also up in price although he didn’t have the foresight to stockpile the ore or bars so he only makes them from the mats he farms. But when he does the prices that he asks are higher and competition is also down.

Both of our jewelcrafters reported similar findings on Titanium related items in their markets.

Even our resident alchemist is reporting that he is once again finding it highly profitable to blow his twenty-hour cooldown on Transmute: Titanium instead of another transmute.

The point is that with the higher prices comes opportunity in many forms. Look for opportunities to profit off inflated Titanium prices in your own market and thus benefit even if you’re not a miner. If you’re unsure how Titanium might affect you take a look at the comprehensive crafted items list courtesy of WoWhead.

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The Most Profitable Gems, Enchants and Glyphs

One of the questions we get most often from readers is, “What is the most profitable gem/enchant/glyph?” It is impossible to give a definitive answer to this problem since it depends largely on how cheaply you as an individual can attain the materials and how efficiently (and at what price) you can sell the crafted enhancement. Thus, we don’t even attempt to answer this question since it is impossible to quantify. We can tell you what our enchanter says are his most profitable vellums (Boots- Icewalker, Chest- Super Stats and Cloak- Titanweave) or what our Jewelcrafter says are his best sellers (Runed Scarlet Ruby, Brilliant Autumn’s Glow and Solid Sky Saphire), but again, the variance in how cheaply you can attain the materials and how well these specific enhancements sell on your server (not to mention how much competition you have) is too wide to make a general judgment call for all crafters.

This is to say, that we can’t effectively figure out what will work best for you. Nor, can we suggest what is best to use as an enhancement overall. We can, however, determine what people think is best and is, thus, most popular. In determining what items are most in-demand to the general population, you can then make your own judgment calls as to what you should be selling based on how cheaply you can attain the materials vs. how much competition/how efficiently you can sell the crafted item.

So, how do we determine the most popular item enhancements for the majority of WoW players? To do that, we turn to our friends the armory data miners. There are many sites out there that will run scripts on the armory statistics pages and determine what builds are most popular or what achievements are the ‘hardest’ to get. As a side effect of this type of data collection, many sites also gather data on most popular gear and enchantments to that gear. In examining their data. we can then deduce what enhancements (and crafted gear) players prefer.

Our favorite armory data mining sites (for profitable crafting purposes) are:

Armory Musings
Armory Data Mining
Glyph Chic

Peruse their data and see if you can determine what the most popular crafted items and enhancements are.

A Few Things to be Aware of:

  • All data miners use a type of data collection called sampling. Many data collection and aggregate services (including our own WoWenomics financial reports) use this function to produce reports efficiently. Sampling, in short, allows for the collection of sample data from a larger general population that is then considered representative of the entire sampled population. This depends on many factors to work correctly, not the least of which is identification of a representative frame and a functional sampling method.
  • Data is only as good as it is current. Some of the data you unearth out there may be dated and will not account for recent changes to the game or the addition of new recipes.
  • As we understand it, the way the armory provides enchantment data is not by actually stating the specific enchantment, but rather, by listing the specific enhancement value. Thus, some of the data you find may have to be cross-referenced with a tool such as EpicEnchants.com which will allow you to determine who is actually using what enchantment.
  • One, minor observation: It would seem to us that the most popular across-the-board enhancements are those with statistics that don’t favor any particular class or build. Things that grant benefits such as + all stats or + crit will, perhaps predictably, always be most popular with the general player base. The exceptions are + resilience enhancements which are, of course, only of interest to hardcore PVPers.

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Hot Item of the Week- Dream Shard

We really hesitate to recommend Dream Shard. Not because it hasn’t increased significantly in value recently (it has) but rather, we hate to even bring it up because of so much flak in the WoWenomic community surrounding the item.

From our own perspective, we first noticed an increase in the price of high-end enchantment materials a little over a month ago when we featured Abyss Crystals as our Hot Item of the Week. The high prices for the crystals we referred to in that post remain today on the three servers we do our regular testing on. Further, also in April, we reported our observations on the impact of patch 3.1 on the WoW economy. At that time we mentioned that our enchanted vellum business was picking up (you might also note that we featured vellums in a previous post as well).

Today we report that all the speculation on Dream Shards has finally come to fruition. As Tobold reported in his February post, until just a few weeks prior to patch 3.1 the shards were still selling on most servers for somewhere in the range of 10 gold. Post-3.1 we saw a small spike in price that we assumed would pass similar to the way many other items spiked in price and then dropped back to ‘normal’ value. However, Dream Shards, on all three of the servers we tested, have only continued to increase in value. Two weeks ago the average price across all three servers on both sides was approximately 22 gold. One week ago it was around 25. Today, as we ran our regular tests and gathered data, we couldn’t help but notice the price point for the going rate of Dream Shards is approximately 28 gold.

We don’t know if the price will be going up or down from here. We suspect, however, that if 28 gold is not the plateau, it is probably close to it so we are selling off our reserves at this time.

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Analysis of the Post-3.1 Economy

We’ve now had two weeks to assess the impact of patch 3.1 on the WoW economy. The general consensus has been that, while there were a few areas of opportunity, the Northrend economy overall is in a state of continued decline. We are certainly no fans of assumption here at WoWenomics so we chose a few items, specifically those items we based our own pre-patch predictions upon, to track with standard financial analytics. It is this analysis we share with you now.

When looking at the statistics below you may notice that there are three weeks of listed tests. The purpose of conducing three weeks of testing was to establish a baseline in the week prior to the release of the patch. Bear in mind that the day the patch was released to the (US) public was Tuesday, April 14th. The data listed below reflects the week of prices leading up to this date and the two-week period following.

Items we Predicted Would Rise in Value

Borean Man O’ War

3 week high: 40.84 on Sunday, April 19, 2009
3 week low: 18.51 on Monday, April 27, 2009
3 week average price: 23.22

after-3-1_1-borean-man-o-war

Of all the items we predicted an increase in price for, Borean Man O’ War saw the biggest increase in value in terms of percentage increase. This was particularly true if you invested when we initially recommended a buy on this item.

Eternal Earth

3 week high: 7.16 on Saturday, April 25, 2009
3 week low: 4.68 on Wednesday, April 8, 2009
3 week average price: 5.53

after-3-1_1-eternal-earth2

While we initially recommended investing in this item prior to 3.1 we amended our recommendation based on data that was released shortly before the patch was released. Yet, Eternal Earth still managed to increase in value over our testing period. Not a huge increase mind you, but an increase nonetheless. Interestingly, all three of the eternals we tested showed a spike in value on all servers in the days immediately following the release of the patch.

Eternal Fire

3 week high: 28.64 on Wednesday, April 16, 2009
3 week low: 18.97 on Wednesday, April 8, 2009
3 week average price: 21.95

after-3-1_1-eternal-fire

Prices for Eternal Fire have remained mostly stable showing only a modest increase over the three-week examination period.

Eternal Shadow

3 week high: 6.89 on Thursday, April 16, 2009
3 week low: 3.94 on Wednesday, April 8, 2009
3 week average price: 5.19

after-3-1_1-eternal-shadow

Interestingly, all tracked eternals showed their lowest prices on the same date. As the price increased from both the date of our prediction and the week prior to the patch date, we consider this prediction a success.

Gems

Initially gems did not show much promise for profit following 3.1. Recently however, the gem market seems to be showing promise. This reflects the fact that players are now attaining more new gear through both Ulduar and Arena Season 6.

Glyphs

The profits to be made in the initial days following the release of 3.1 were meaningful and well documented. Our resident inscription expert remarks only that “things have cooled” significantly since then.

High-end Cloth- Moonshroud

3 week high: 96.45 on Wednesday, April 8, 2009
3 week low: 81.82 on Tuesday, April 28, 2009
3 week average price: 88.97

after-3-1_1-moonshroud1

We chose to track Moonshroud for several reasons; the most prevalent being that we feel it has the highest potential for increase. That said, the price of Moonshroud has thus far not increased outside of specific price spikes described in our summary below. Further, the decline in price is representative of the decline of the other two types of high-end tailoring cloth. In fact, were you to lay the charts for all three cloth types over one another you’d find that they decline at an almost impossible to differentiate rate although the price points are different.

Icy Dragonscale

We chose not to track Icy Dragonscale statistically due to the fact that it experienced a very modest increase in price. In fact, the only remarkable thing about this leatherworking item, in our opinion, is just how unremarkable the price changes were. The prices of the dragonscales have remained at almost the exact same levels for the past three weeks indicating that, perhaps, the market had ‘bottomed out’ previously and this item has achieved some level of price stability.

Mana Regeneration Items

We did not track a specific item to represent mana regeneration as we feel there are simply too many options available to the player to enhance mana regeneration. We do note, however, that we’ve seen a modest increase in the going rate of +MP5 food and gems.

Popular Enchantments and Enchanting Materials

As we noted recently, we’re doing a brisk and healthy business in already-enchanted vellums. Beyond that, we are seeing server price spikes in specific enchanting materials but nothing consistent. If you’re in the enchanting mats business you’ll have to frequently check the AH so as to determine when best to buy and sell.

Relic of Ulduar

These reputation turn-in items have not yet shown a significant increase in price. They have performed instead in similar manner as the Icy Dragonscale listed above. The only interesting thing about these relics is that it is the single item that seems to have found a consistent price that is very close to being the same on all servers (the Icy Dragonscale, by contrast, is consistently in the same price range day after day but that price point varies from server to server). The Relic of Ulduar price is about 2 gold per item across every server tested. Prices for the past three weeks have varied by less than 5 silver from this standard on any given day and, remarkably, this remains the same price level whether the items are sold in stacks or as singles.

Titansteel Bars

3 week high: 102.39 on Tuesday, April 7, 2009
3 week low: 77.82 on Tuesday, April 28, 2009
3 week average price: 92.66

after-3-1_1-titansteel-bar2

Titansteel Bars have been the biggest loser so far in our pre-3.1 assessment. Prices have continued downwards in steady decline for the past three weeks outside of occasional price spikes unique to each server.

WoTLK Flasks

Flask prices have not been specifically tracked as they are a different beast entirely. The two-for-one flask split further complicated the issue. That said, we made a huge amount of gold off of flasks with the release of patch 3.1 and will, perhaps, explore the potential for flasks in a future post. Suffice it to say, for now anyway, that flasks are one of the best items to apply the bid/ask strategy to as it can prove very profitable.

WoTLK Herbs

There was no significant increase in herb prices outside of the occasional herb spike. We theorize that the majority of the scribes and alchemists intending to profit from patch 3.1 bought their herbs earlier rather than later. Herb prices have remained, for the most part, consistent throughout the patch.

Items we Predicted Would Fall in Value

BoE Valor Bracers

The decline in price that we predicted for these bracers is difficult to quantify as there is no simple way to track all the various bracers available and the items are typically sold ad-hoc rather than pre-bought and resold on the AH. Anecdotal evidence, however, supports our initial prediction for decline in that the messages observed in /trade chat by all WoWenomics team members clearly shows the asking price for the bracers to be dropping.

Dragonfin Angelfish

3 week high: 60.81 on Friday, April 17, 2009
3 week low: 44.16 on Sunday, April 26, 2009
3 week average price: 53.82

after-3-1_1-dragonfin-angelfish

This item is in slight decline although it is not for the reasons listed in our initial assessment. Rather, the decline here is caused by over fishing. We’ve provided a more in-depth analysis of the post-3.1 fish market here.

Frozen Orbs

3 week high: 92.75 on Sunday, April 12, 2009
3 week low: 70.16 on Sunday, April 26, 2009
3 week average price: 88.23

after-3-1_1-frozen-orb

Frozen Orbs continue to decline in value although it is difficult to differentiate whether this is due to the deflationary effect or because of the reasons mentioned in our initial hypothesis.

Mycah’s Botanical Bag

3 week high: 284.77 on Friday, April 10, 2009
3 week low: 159.18 on Monday, April 27, 2009
3 week average price: 225.16

after-3-1_1-mycahs-botanical-bag

This item has declined significantly since the release of patch 3.1. There is a steep drop in price a few days after the release that we attribute to the introduction of the new and improved herbing bag to the general WoW market.

In Summary

It should be said right off the bat that it is much easier to predict a decline in the price of an item in WoW than it is to predict a gain in value. This is mostly due to the previously established deflationary effect occurring within the overall game economy. Unfortunately you can’t short WoW items. So, while we did end up being entirely accurate in our predictions for declining value, this alone is not much to be proud of.

As far as our predictions for price increases go, we still reason that some of these increases may still occur as the new crafting patterns drop from Ulduar but, the fact is, the demand spike for materials will be small and short-lived. We’ve already seen examples of this on all of our test servers actually. Situations occurred on all four servers wherein the prices of a certain item like Ebonweave spiked significantly in a single test but prices were almost always normalized by the next test approximately12 hours later. These price spikes were not shown in the results above because they occurred at different times for each server and were thus normalized when combined with the statistics of other servers. What this does tell us, however, is that there is still opportunity for an individual to profit by timing their sales of specific high-end items with the spikes that occur on their own servers. Whether or not you’re interested or capable of watching your server’s economy that closely is, of course, a different story. We do advise that you check frequently, or otherwise liquidate strategically. We do not advise holding items for the long term as that strategy is counterintuitive to the overall WoWenomics game.

We will be continuing our testing and tracking of the prices of the above listed items (and a few others) over the next few weeks as we continue our analysis. If there is enough interest in these types of posts, we’ll put something together and share our results with you.

A Few Notes on Our Testing Methods

It should be noted that all of the listed prices are in the ‘Fair Price’ format, a price measurement scheme that is explained on our Terms page in detail. The listed value of items is the fair price of the items as listed in the Auction houses of four servers. The prices that we show are the average of the listed prices on all four servers. Prices were measured at two points during the day and on both horde and alliance sides. Thus, the final listed ‘Fair Price’ that we tracked and shared is the average of both day and night prices over four servers on both the horde and alliance sides. Prices were measured at the same time daily on each server for the sake of consistency. A fifth server was also tested but not factored into the above listed prices as a control test for our results.

On the day that patch 3.1 was released to US servers, April 14th, data was not recorded due to server stability issues. Therefore, the data listed for April 14th is an average of the day prior and following day’s data. Similarly, on Tuesdays following the patch, servers were unavailable for AM testing times so only evening data is listed. We don’t feel either of these averaged scores significantly affected the outcome of our tests and only mention it now in the interests of full disclosure and transparency.

On a personal note I’d like to send a big thanks out to the WoWenomics team members for measuring and recording their data and returning it in a clear and timely fashion.

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3.1 Changes to Crafting Reagent Requirements

As a follow-up to yesterday’s post regarding the 3.1 crafting list from WoR, we wanted to point out another fantastic 3.1 WoW professions tool that works nicely with the resource from WoR: The Reagents Changes List from MMO-Champion.

Sorted by profession, this tool allows crafters to see what source materials will be changing with the implementation of patch 3.1. Take a look at the tab for your chosen profession and make note of items that you may now need (or, as in most cases, no longer need) to craft some of your most popular items.

The following is our quick assessment, by profession, of some of the key 3.1 crafting materials changes that we suspect may have an impact on the WoW economy or your finances in particular:

Alchemy-
The two most notable alchemy changes are
1) The removal of Fire Leaf as a required reagent for the Flask of Endless Rage. Right off the bat, we can estimate that this will bring the price of the Northrend attack power flask more in-line with the other three current end-game flasks. Further, we also predict a significant decrease in the going rate of Fire Leaf and suggest you sell them off now while you can still get top dollar for them. As we expect the rage flask to also drop slightly in value, you may also consider selling off any stock you have now and re-crafting them again later when they no longer require Fire Leaf and, are thus, cheaper to make.
2) The removal of vials as a necessity when crafting several types the various alchemical oils. Expect marginal impact beyond slightly lowering the crafting cost of the oils themselves and thus, a small increase profit margin when they are crafted for purposes of profit.

Blacksmithing-
The two most notable changes in materials to blacksmithing are
1) Reduction in amount of Enchanted Thorium Bars required for two items. This could marginally reduce the price of these bars but we don’t really see an impact given the outdated nature of these older items.
2) Removal of Jet Black Feather, Bloodvine, and grinding stones from several items. Again, we see minimal impact here and will file these changes in the ‘too little, too late’ folder.

Cooking-
Two notable changes
1) Most older, pre-WotLK, items have had their spice or purchase reagent removed. This should allow for cheaper or faster leveling of the cooking skill but will have minimal economic impact.
2) The inclusion of at least three new cooking recipes (although the list from MMO-Champion doesn’t list them as new, we assume that Pumpkin Pie and Slow-Roasted Turkey are new items as well) that call for new reagents. The economic impact of these items will depend on how the new reagents are attained. Our theory is that, given the seasonal nature of these new recipes, they are part of a future in-game holiday event although a quick look at the proposed Noblegarden achievement list provides no additional guidance.

Enchanting-
Enchanting will be getting an overhaul in terms of a significant decrease in the amount required materials for many popular enchants. The complete removal of Nexus Crystals from several items will reduce demand and price for this type of crystal so you may wish to sell your stock of them now. The most glaring change we notice is the overhaul of the Lifeward weapon enchant. The incoming changes will reduce the cost of this enchant from approximately 400 gold to close to 20 gold. That’s a major change and may increase the popularity of Lifeward. Again, many other enchants are also having their material requirements reduced, possibly reflecting Blizzard’s intent to make this profession less of a gold sink and easier to level.

Engineering-
Minimal changes and minimal economic impact. Minor reductions in some source materials. Overall this reflects Blizzard’s stance that Engineering is “working as intended.”

Inscription-
Many new glyphs added. As these new glyphs become more common they may positively affect the prices of Northrend herbs and inks.

Jewelcrafting-
Several new recipes and reduction in required materials for one item. Also possibly reflects the “working as intended” stance from Blizzard.

Leatherworking-
The most notable change to the leatherworking profession is the significant reduction in the amount of the various types of leather required to craft many older items. This, perhaps, reveals that Blizzard intends for this skill to be a bit easier to level but also leaves skinning as a profitable gathering profession in a little bit more dire of a state.

Tailoring-
A few reductions in materials requirements but what stands out to us most is the removal of Ironweb Spider Silk from many recipes. This should significantly reduce the cost of this type of spider silk which already didn’t sell particularly well.

Good luck in your crafting efforts post-3.1. Thanks again to MMO-Champion for the handy resource. We’d also like to take this opportunity to remind our readers that you can find permanent links to MMO-Champion, WoR and many other informative sites on our resources page.

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