Moneymaking 101 - A Newbie Guide (WoW)  

by OzoneSSX

While levelling, money is often scarce though very required. I put together (pieced together) this guide for new, first time WoW players on how to get some dosh. I'm sure there's a lot of addendums which can be made to this, as well as a lot of advice from seasoned moneymakers, it is in no way concise and complete, but, you can make a CONSIDERABLE amount of cash this way as opposed to simply selling items to vendors, and in some form or another it is utilized by many a WoW player.

This guide begins with the assumption that you already have a main character running about, if you're truly new to the game, you need to make your main character first, then...

Contents [hide]

Make a stockbroker

Make an secondary character (an 'alt') and immediately run the nearby quests to get to level 5. One he/she is at level 5 don't bother with any more quests. Your main objective now is to get your alt to the nearest big city with an auction house (AH). Auction houses are not located in all towns/cities, but are located in the major ones (Stormwind, Ironforge, etc...) If you need to, simply ask in the chat channel where the nearest location of a city with an AH is. When you find the location, run for it. You may die along the way, but don't worry, respawn and keep running. Don't stop to kill anything (unlees you want to) as you will no longer level with this character in the near future - he/she is going to be a go-between for you your main character and your money.

Arrive at the city, have a dance if you like, then go say hi to a guard. Ask the guard where to get 'enchanting' training, then go get it (thats why you need to be level 5 - it's the the minimum level requirement to train professions). As per why you need it, you'll see later. Also, while you are at the enchanting shop, buy a 'copper rod', 1 'Strange Dust' and 1 'Lesser Magic Essence'. Then, open your enchanting skill and enchant the 'copper rod' so that it becomes your 'runed copper rod' (aka magic stick with feathers on it) - this allows you to make full use of the enchanting profession. Now, head outside and ask another friendly guard where the AH is, go find it, and then go find the mailbox closest to it. Your alt will spend his existence (at least, for the time being) running between the two of them. For now, position him/her near the mailbox.

Once you're set up with this, log out your alt. All the hard work is done.

Set up your supplier

Go back to your main character. If you don't already have two collection skills (skinning/mining/herbalism), take two up. Make sure 1 is skinning and the second either mining or herbalism. For skinning go find and buy a 'skinning knife'. For mining go find a buy a 'mining pick' and a 'blacksmith hammer'. Herbalism needs no special tools. The collection skills are the big moneymakers of the game at early levels - you simply skin/mine/gather, gain skill levels, and sell anything you collect for profit.

Now, play your main game, Cry havok and release the dogs of war! As your main runs about on his/her quests, skin, mine, and/or gather everything you can. Hold onto most everything, do not sell items to any vendors (aside from the gray items, which are common and worthless - these you can sell). When you get to an area with a forge (look for the dwarves, a blower, or a fire somewhere in town (usually at a blacksmith's), use your smelting skill (comes with mining) to convert your ore into bars (if you chose mining instead of herbalism).

When your main eventually gets to a mailbox, mail all your collected items to your alt. Note: As you play you'll begin to learn about what's worthwhile to mail to your alt for sale and what you should simply sell at a vendor. Until you figure this out, assume that anything that isn't listed in gray is worth a shot at profit.

Now, play the market

This becomes your Donald Trump part of the game. Sign in your alt, get your mail, then run with all his/her goodies to the auction house. Browse the auction house for the goods you are about to sell and note the prices - you can do this by opening the 'browse' tab on the auction house panel and right click the item in your bag (its name will appear in the item field of the AH window, saving you typing), then hit the 'search' button in the AH window. Look at the competition's prices for the item you wish to sell, then create auctions for your items undercutting the competition by 5-10%. If an item you are selling is not on the auction house (for example a certain weapon or piece of armor), search out something similar for reference and undercut that price by 5-10%.

Most items like skins, leather, ore and bars you can put up for 12 hours on any day of the week, resting assured of a sale, as they are items required by many players to advance their skills. But, when you put up any green or blue items for sale try to put them up for sale on a Friday with a 48 hour limit on the auction. Why? Because green and blue items are not 'needed' items, they are 'I want that' type of items, and there are many more casual players online and shopping the auction house on Saturdays and Sundays for 'want' items.

When all of your auctions are created, run back to the mailbox and wait for either the money from your successful auctions or the next mail from your main.

Note: There is an add on program out there called 'auctioneer' you may eventually want to look into which helps with auction prices, and can be incredibly useful, but it does have a tendency once in a while to give you a price way off current market value. The best method is to scan current auctions to get a current value idea.

So, why the enchantment profession on the alt?

Every once in a while you will find you have a green or blue item which just doesn't seem to be selling. If it doesn't sell after two postings, it probably isn't going to sell at all. As an enchanter, you also have the ability to 'disenchant' the item, which breaks the item down into its original magical components which have just about a 100% sell rate. Note that this setup will not last forever as, at some point or another, your main will be sending your alt items which are too high in level for him/her to disenchant, but, at that point, which is a ways off, you should be familiar enough with the game to know how to compensate for it.

A couple of bits of advice if running this scheme

If your limited on bag space, you also have the bank nearby to store any green items for weekend sale.

As you start pulling in cash, consider investing in larger bags for your alt. This allows you to store more items for weekend sales and cuts back on running back and forth between the auction house, the bank and the mailbox, which can get a bit frustrating.

And, whatever you do...DON'T EVER BUY THINGS FROM THE AH!

You're the one playing it for profit, not falling prey to the money pit it is. I can't imagine how many seasoned players would tell you this. Those green/blue items that you may come across and want so badly are the world drops from other players who are also trying to make a profit. Did you just hit level and there's a great piece of level 12 armor at the AH? Avoid the temptation. Why? Because you're now level 12 and items like that will be dropping for you.

But note, there are two feasible exceptions to this rule, which are right here...

Things to buy from the AH ;)

This is the first feasible exception to the DON'T BUY ANYTHING FROM THE AH rule. While scanning the auction house for the competition's prices, keep your eyes open and buy anything which is underpriced. For example, if you are looking to sell 'item x', lets say you scan the auction house to get an idea on price and find 8 'item x's' at 50s each and 1 'item x' listed at 10s, immediately buy the one selling for 10s. Then post both of your 'item x's' at 40s each. There's some good money to be made this way. Your expenditure is 10s, you profit is 70s. I've sat once or twice and played this game for an hour or so with a considerable profit made at the end.

This is the second feasible exception to the DON'T BUY ANYTHING FROM THE AH rule. You may want, at some point, to use the AH to advance your alt's enchanting skill while still making a profit. Here's how. Go to the AH and bid on the lowest priced low level green items. Disenchant them. Then take the magical components that you recovered and re-list those on the AH for a bit of profit. This may take a few trial and error runs until you begin to become familiar with the items, their components and their relative values, but it does have potential to net some decent (but not great) profit.

A few bits on finding miscellaneous cash

If you visit a vendor and he/she has an item in limited stock (shown by a number in parenthesis, e.g. 'Mighty Rage Potion (1)'), BUY IT! These are the equivalent of 'rare spawns' for vendors. My auction house alt character, alone, can make quite a bit of money in just under an hour by running about town, buying every rare vendor spawn, then immediately putting them in the Auction House. For example, whenever you stop in a town, go visit the local enchanting guild and buy out enchanting mats such as 'strange dust' and 'lesser magic essence' as well as any rare recipes they may have. These periodically renew at the vendor and sell for a few silver each for the dust and essence, and a few gold each for recipes, BUT, at the AH stacks of dust/essence may sell for 1g+ and some recipes go for up to 15-20g.

If your main is in the Ashenvale area, run south to the building just north of the lake. There you can buy cooking training books for 70s each, I've been selling these on weekend auctions with a 100% buyout at 2g50s.

What if the items you're receiving from your main are too high a level for your alt to disenchant?

Its relatively easy (at the low levels) to correct this. Run your alt on over to the enchanting shop in town and buy a recipe or two along with any 'strange dust' and 'lesser magic essence' that's in stock (or if you are buying them out as mentioned in 'miscellaneous cash' above, hold a stack or two of each aside for yourself). Train the recipes you just bought. Now, open your enchant window and find an enchant in your list which will allow you to level your skill (listed in red, yellow or green). Lets just say, for example, you have an enchant (listed as green) to put +1 Stamina on gloves. You have the spell, make sure you have the materials (dust and such). then run off to find a shop and buy a few pairs of gloves. Enchant them with the +1 Stamina. With each pair of gloves enchanted, your skill increases by 1 (till that enchant tops out (it turns gray)). Then either give the gloves out as gifts to level 1's (if you feel charitable) or, better yet, drop them in the AH for sale - after all this guide is about making cash.

For the future

By running this method initially you'll learn a lot about the economics (supply and demand) in WoW. When you grow more comfortable with the basics, download the 'Auctioneer' add-on and mess about with it to learn to maximize your profits. I'd advise having an understanding of the economy before doing so as, if you don't understand the basics, Auctioneer will just create frustration. When you become more experienced in game you will realize there are limitations to this method (this is a just starters guide). But, by the point you realize these limitations you should have a respectable amount of gold and the knowledge to compensate and modify your game accordingly.

Resources and thanks for help in writing this Wiki

Please note that this guide came about from many posts here at Alla, info from my guildies, and from experimenting a bit. My thanks to all the advice, critiques, and suggestions. From the SSX I'd like to thank Magdelena, lili, FlyingDanish, and Padisher. From Alla I'd like to thank Wordaen, ohmikeghod, ArtemisEnteri, Miskreant, mikelolol, bkhovde, PentUpAnger, cafeenoftheazurestorm, and YJMark for suggestions and opinions which were considered and incorporated in editing this Wiki. To see the full postings of these guys/gals and others (which contain some great info which hasn't been included here), you can find the original Alla thread here. ALSO, check out Evermarked's Moneymaking guide for beginners, its got a lot of additional and very useful info, including some great tips on how to play the AH for maximum profit with minimal work!

World of Warcraft

This page last modified 2008-10-03 10:42:10.