I regret to say that most guest posts that I receive slip by the wayside and end up on another blog. Not this time. Not this one. Do yourself a favor, take a few minutes, sip your morning coffee, and most of all, enjoy.
…U MAD BRO?
Confessions of an Auction House Sniper
You don’t know me, but you have called me names that will never get through my language filter. We’re often from different factions, and you know that what you /s to me is going to be gibberish, yet you can’t stop typing; I make you that mad. Ninja, jerk, ass… Call me what you want, you’re not getting your items back and you just may earn yourself a hearty /LOL and /wave just to help it marinate.
I want you mad, it brings me joy. I want you to go round up your crew and return to Booty Bay to kill the Auctioneers just to show me what’s what… I’ll still get you next time; you’re only going to make it worse for yourself… Go, log, come back later, maybe I won’t be here. Or, maybe, juuuuuust maybe I will be… you won’t know until you get that sinking feeling when you start spammin’ the search button in the AH only to find that your auction is not coming up… it’s gone… it’s mine now…
Don’t wax all poetic about how I know the spirit of what you’re trying to do, blah blah blah… You are exploiting the game to work around the in game faction mail restriction, so don’t cry to me when it backfires on you. When I roll into Alterac, I have to accept that you’re going to try to kill me. When I enter the glyph market, I have to accept that you’re going to employ every tactic at your disposal to run me out. When you roll into the neutral AH accept that what I take from you is the cost of doing business; make it as difficult for me as you can.
If there’s a chance to appease Karma, however, allow me to offer this: a look into the world of a sniper and what I do so that you can see what should be obvious and better protect yourself from folks like me who find more value in watching your reaction than in whatever the item is (the rare exception being the Mekgineer’s Chopper I snagged last night which prompted this post).
The advice I will offer you is simple: know the game; know your surroundings and know when to walk away. Adhere to this very simple advice and, more often than not, I won’t be able to get you. Fail to do so and… /LOL
KNOW THE GAME
Anyone engaging in cross-faction trading knows something about the game and should not be surprised that the possibility exists that someone else will try to get the auctions they list for next to nothing. If an item is valuable enough to go through the trouble of trying to move it cross faction, it’s valuable enough for someone else to want it. Don’t be naïve and think that I’m not going to take for 1c what I’d pay 10g for in the marketplace. Know that I’m out there.
yours is at the top of the list waiting for met grab it. When I’m setting up a, “hunt” I list 10-15 of a very low value item like Course Stone, Simple Flour, etc., for 99c. More often than not, these will be the cheapest on the AH and will take up most of my view of the first page of auctions when sorted by buy price.
So, what I’ve done is set it up so that when I spam the search button, any new listings that are posted for a few copper will pop up right at the top of the list. Any new listings posted for a few silver (often done by those trying to avoid having their auctions at the top of the list) will appear right under my wall of items, also very easily seen and grabbed. Ultimately, look at what is currently listed on the AH and price your item so that it’s value falls somewhere in the mid-range.
Ideally, you’d want your item to be somewhere near the top of the second page of auctions (if there are that many on your neutral AH) so that someone trying to find, “the new item” will have to scroll and go through pages to find it… by then, hopefully, you’ve already snatched it for yourself. Certainly don’t allow me to view the entire range of auctions with ease. Will you pay more in the 15% AH cut than if you listed for 1c? Yes, yes you will… but you’ll also have your chopper.
KNOW YOUR SURROUNDINGS
a couple pages of mostly junk and/or overpriced pets, right? Why am I standing there? If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck… DUCK! Trust that I do not think it a strange coincidence that an Alli and a Horde toon just happened to walk up to the Auctioneer at the same time. I’m ready for you.
While it would have been best categorized as, “know the game,” the previous point leads directly to this – it takes two accounts to trade cross faction; either you and a friend, or you with two accounts. There is no reason why both characters need to be in the same AH to accomplish the transfer. Stage one of your team in Booty Bay and send the other to either Gadgetstan or Everlook. At the very least, go to different auctioneers within Booty Bay. My Spidey Senses don’t start tingling immediately when I see a single character come up to the auctioneer… when I see two of you standing there, you better believe I’m interested in what you’re doing. Know also that the volume of trading is likely much higher in one of the neutral AH’s depending on your server’s population characteristics. If your server has a higher Alli population, you can bet Booty Bay sees the bulk of the transfers. As a sniper I know this will be the most target rich environment and that’s where I’ll be and where you should avoid.
My sniper will never see you, but my spotter will. I play on two accounts with two screens. While my sniper sits at one of the more remote auctioneers, prospecting ore and cutting a bag full of gems, my spotter is sitting in Booty Bay, hidden from view, nowhere near any of the three, yes three, auctioneers. Perhaps I’m across the bay on the dock by the boat location. Maybe I’m sitting (or lying down) atop the Inn or another building with a view… I’m somewhere that I can observe you walking up and interacting with the auctioneers. I can be as far away as the blacksmithing trainer and from the right vantage point I can see you at the auctioneer by the bank.
All I have to be able to see is your name plate illuminated and I know you’re there. Then, a quick mouseover tells me who you are and I’m lookin’ you up on the armory to see your level, professions, etc. Once I, “see” you with my spotter, I’m spammin’ the search button with my sniper and waiting for your auction to post either right above or right below my listings of junk.
The take-away is that you should recon the area before you ever go up to the auctioneers yourself. Find out who’s around, where they are located and what they are doing. If you see a lowbie hangin’ around in Booty Bay realize it wasn’t easy to get her there and she is there for a reason. The primary reason is for cross faction trading, of course. However, if you see her just hangin’ out, not interacting with the auctioneer, bank, mail, etc., there’s a reason; maybe she’s watching you!
KNOW WHEN TO WALK AWAYIn short, if any of the aforementioned conditions exists when you arrive at your favorite neutral auction house, walk away and come back later. If you can’t, or won’t come back later, be smart; split up your team, list your auction for enough gold that it’s not as easy for me to identify it in the list, find out who’s around.
Throw up a couple test listings of junk for 1c to test the water. When I know you’re there and about to try to cross something, my heart is pounding, my adrenaline is pumping, and my finger is spammin’ the search button. When I see that listing pop up I’m clickin’ it as quickly as I can to try to snatch it… I honestly don’t have time to distinguish it as epic or junk; I’m just tryin’ to get it… So throw up some junk and see if I bite. If I do, you got me, well played. If I don’t you’re probably ok, but move quickly, seconds count.
Goblin Nation, REACT TO ME! Few topics bring as much division among us Goblins. Is it right, is it wrong, am I an ass or are you stupid? In the end, our opinions don’t matter. Neither mine nor yours will change as a product of this discourse… All I can hope is that you ignore this advice, this attempt at gaining some Karma capital, and some day soon I find you in my AH…
Sneak up behind you and ask.......U MAD, BRO?