Blizzard have placed a new auction house in teh Mists of Pandaria beta called the Black Market Auction House (BMAH) and it has generated a lot of talk around the WoW community around Blizzard’s reasons for introducing and what impact it will have on the game, players and gold making in general. Today I’m going to give my thoughts on it as a feature and soon I’ll follow this up with a look at how it will affect gold making.
So what exactly is it? Well it is an auction house just like the one you’ll find in Stormwind or Orgrimmar but unlike those you’ll not be able to post items there yourself but you will be able to bid on items that are posted on there by NPCs. Items that are appearing there in teh beta are rare mounts, impossible to get armor (like the original tier 3 from Naxxramas) and other hard/impossible to get items.
My fears are all based around one thing, that the really rich players will be able to buy these items and then post them on the regular AH for higher prices. Sure I can have the same opportunity to buy teh item as them but that is governed by 2 variables:
- How frequently Blizzard post an item on the BMAH;
- Our time to camp vs their time to camp;
The first point is a great unknown and if the item is posted regularly it makes it harder to sell on the regular AH because the supply will be higher.
The second will depend on our real life situations but experience has revealed that thise that have time to camp the AH generally speaking are able to control certain markets whereas those that have less time cannot.
The solution to the problem is simple which is to make all items bind on pickup or bind on account so the person buying is unable to sell it on. Sure the time rich get more opportunity to get the items but they will lose their in game wealth advantage eventually if they do it constantly which will give the small guy some hope.
This leads nicely to the motivation Blizzard has for the BMAH. If it is simply to provide a gold sink for the rich players I’m certain that they will make things BoP/BoA and all will be good. However, there is the chance that they just want to give an alternative way to grab cool stuff and if that is the case, they may keep stuff unbound until used/equipped. Which will simply mean the rich getting richer and the poor getting more frustrated with the inequalities of the wealth divide which will only lead to more envy and that could result in more people wanting to buy gold, which is bad for everyone in game and only good for the thieving hacking scum and their customers.
But I’m hopeful that the reason(s) Blizzard have are good and will not enable the goods to be sold on. Personally I’m hoping for some of the old school mounts to be re-introduced this way and if they sell the T3 sets as a complete 8 piece set I’d be interested in that as well otherwise there is precious little I see me buying from the BMAH. What are you hoping to see on there?