What Drives a Gold Maker?

Marcus TyI’ve made so much gold in World of Warcraft – several million over many alts – that I don’t really keep track of it anymore. With so much gold in my collective bags I’m often asked by other players what drives me to keep making more?

As part of this months Blogging Carnival hosted by Selltacular at Copper to Gold I’ve tried to answer the question:

What keeps driving you to make gold?  What do you do to avoid getting burnt out?

I’ve always loved making gold – both in the real world and in Azeroth. In the real world I used to work for an organization that traded in physical gold bullion. I built computer systems that tracked and managed the yellow shiny metal. I guess it was the TradeSkillMaster of its day! So it was natural that when I first started playing World of Warcraft that I should be drawn to the virtual gold economy of the game.

Now talk to any gold maker and he or she will tell you that no matter how many millions of virtual gold one has, there’s always the need to make more! But it helps to have a challenge in the game and when I first started down the road of serious gold making my primary goal was to make enough gold to buy my first epic mount. Those amounts of gold now seem ludicrously small, but having an end-game in sight helped to keep me focused.

So now I have several million gold I ask myself what is the next goal? For me it’s not about the amount of gold I’ve amassed but the continued exploration of the wow gold economy. I can honestly say that I’ve not come close to exploring all the possible markets that exist on the Auction House and I’m always learning new tools and techniques to make gold efficiently. For me, its the continued refinement of my gold making techniques that drives me to make gold.

But it’s easy to get burnt out. You need to balance the making of gold with the rest of your game-play. This is true in the real world as it is in Azeroth.  My advice to new players just starting out on their quest to their first million gold is to strive for a balance in your game-play. Sure, set gold making goals – but not to the exclusion of all else in the game.

For me, it’s time I set some new goals – perhaps I’ll level a new character on a new Realm. I’ve always said that I should level a Horde character all the way through to level 90 and make as much gold as I can in the process. Now there’s a challenge!

Here’s wishing you more gold in ya bags!

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What Makes A Good Gold Maker in World of Warcraft

Gold Capped
Gold Capped

As part of this months Blogging Carnival hosted by Selltacular at Copper to Gold I’ve tried to answer the question:

What is your definition of a good gold maker? How do you measure gold making success?

During the last show of the Journal of Marcus Ty Podcast, I was asked the question ‘What makes a good gold maker’? I thought about about this for a while and considered, well, what makes a bad gold maker? In this post I’ll give you my thoughts on the good the bad and the ugly aspects of gold making as I see them in today’s markets of World of Warcraft.

I set out to learn how to make gold back in the days of Vanilla WoW. In those days, the virtual market place in Warcraft was a relatively relaxed place to hang out in. No one was hung up on getting gold capped and idea that you could amass one Million gold was considered foolish.

In those early days of WoW I jumped in and out of the Auction House and traded just enough to make the gold I needed for my daily adventures in Azeroth. Like most players today, I considered time the real enemy and I judged my gold making a success if I could complete my trades within 15-20 minutes and collect my gold from successful auctions at the end of the process.  I would then use the rest of my game-time to quest and generally explore the rest of Azeroth. Over the years I’ve exploited the Auction House so well that I’ve amassed many millions of gold over several alts and the Blizzard Gold Cap of 999,999.99.99g seems artificially too low.

If I roll the clock forward to today, the Auction House today is a very different place to what it was in vanilla WoW. The processes are still the same, but the competition is much fiercer. Many more players are savvy to the goblin ways of trading (I like to think I had a hand in that) and once lucrative markets have come and gone. I still make most of my gold from trading on the Auction House and time is still the enemy. I spend a little more time these days exploring new Auction House markets and gold making techniques – not because I need the gold  – because I love writing about these techniques and helping others get to their first Million gold in Warcraft.

So my definition of a ‘good’ gold maker is one that can efficiently exploit a wide variety of changing markets to maximize a profit from the time and gold capital invested.

Time is an important factor here. Many players still resort to buying gold because they are time poor, so gold making techniques that rely on a player camping out on the Auction House 24×7 continually listing and cancelling their trades doesn’t really cut it. Players that don’t factor time into their techniques aren’t ‘good’ gold makers. They’re not efficient.

Making a profit here is important. It doesn’t matter how much gold you receive in your mailbox if you’ve spent more gold crafting and listing your items in the first place. Using just revenue as a measure of success is poor gold making.

A good gold maker knows that markets come and go. Things never stay the same – not in the real world and not in Warcraft. The Auction House changes after every patch and good gold makers adapt to changing markets. They know and sell what’s in demand.

Finally, it helps to remember why we play World of Warcraft in the first place. For me its always been about hanging out with my mates and having fun. The same for making gold. Once it starts to become a second job, it’ll be time to stable my mounts and hang up my armor.


WoW Auction House Guide
The Marcus Ty Auction House Gold Secrets Guide



Learning Lessons From Old Gold Making Markets


When it comes to making gold in World of Warcraft I try to be active in as many markets as I can comfortably manage without the whole activity turning into a second job. This is important because as the wow gold economy churns, markets come and go. Those players that become too reliant on a single market can sometime wake up to find their main source of wow gold disappearing fast. But over the years, even the most experienced gold makers can become too attached to a once profitable market and fall victim to declining sales before admitting that it is now defunct.

In this article I’ll discuss one such market that I became unreasonable attached to and which is now defunct and highlight what gold makers can learn from these old markets. This post is part of Cold’s Gold Blogging Carnival.

On any one server in the wow universe there are many thousands of items to trade on the Auction House. So it’s best to categorize these items and break them up into discrete markets. When it comes to the wow gold economy I like to use the built-in Auction House categories to describe these markets. One such market that I’ve always traded is the Pet or Companion market.

Now, before patch 5.0 hit the servers I had come to rely on this market as a steady contributor to my gold income stream. But competition can be a little tough so I traded in the sub-market of mechanical pets which I had come to dominate on my realm. Identifying a niche market in a much broader market can be a good way to reduce competition on any given server. And one companion that I always traded, week in and week out, was the Tranquil Mechanical Yeti.

For the Engineers among you, you’ll recognize that this mechanical companion is very simple to craft, but can sell for many times it’s cost of materials. In fact the only problem with this recipe is that it needs hard to grind materials, such as Globe of Water,  Elemental Air and Earth which tend to have a low drop rate. To combat this I set up a shopping list in TSM called ‘Yeti’ which I ran daily to scoop up these items for crafting, while at the same time depriving my competition of the necessary material and reducing competition.

But as in the real world things change and with the coming of Mists of Pandaria and Battle Pets this market, and the demand for the Tranquil Mechanical Yeti, underwent a rapid decline. Now there are many reasons for this and Cold has written several good articles on the subject, so I won’t repeat them here. I’ll only describe some of the macro-economic changes that can result when Blizzard adds new features to the game.

One reason for the decline that I will mention is that companions became available account wide and many players had multiple companions reducing demand. Now, when Blizzard makes a change like this it normally has a big impact on the supply and demand curves in the wow gold economy. However, so ingrained was my daily TSM scan and crafting routine that I continued on my merry way manufacturing the Tranquil Mechanical Yeti.

But after Patch 5.0 players  focused on Battle Pets (there is even an Auction House category for this type of pet now) and my little Yeti kept coming back to me in the form of expired auctions, time after time. I even noticed a huge increase and price drop of the mats needed to craft it. Eventually, the penny dropped and I realized that this niche market is as dead a parrot in Monty Python sketch – at least for now. So, what have I learned from this market?

Well, every new patch brings change to the wow gold economy and the markets from which it is composed. Nothing stays the same – not in the real world or in wow. New markets are created (Battle Pets) and old markets decline (many mechanical pets). As gold makers, we shouldn’t  get wedded to any one particular  market lest we end up like an ex-parrot (dead).  Successful gold makers adapt to the ever changing markets of the wow gold economy. To quote Henry Ford: “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently”.

Marcus Ty

JMT Professions Guide

JMT Professions Guide

Journal of Marcus Ty Podcast – Episode 01

Journal of Marcus Ty Podcast
Journal Podcast


Welcome to the first episode of the Marcus Ty series of gold making podcasts. In this first episode your host, Marcus Ty, explains his gold making philosophy and helps set new players on the road to sensible gold making strategies.

Marcus discusses the importance of the wow gold economy and the essentials of the Auction House.


[MP3] Episode 01 – Welcome, Friend
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  Add the Podcast to your RSS reader or iTunes directly.

Show Notes

  • Welcome to the Pig & Whistle, podcasting studio of Marcus Ty.
  • Where to find me.
  • The Marcus Ty philosophy of gold making.
  • Why all players need to make gold and how to get started.
  • Understanding the Warcraft gold economy.
  • The importance of the Auction House.
  • The importance of the right Auction House Addon
  • The 5 Goblin Principles of Auction House Trading

Resources mentioned in the podcast:


WoW Auction House Guide
The Marcus Ty Auction House Gold Secrets Guide