One of the things I disliked about Warcraft was how frankly screwed over the economy was. Farmers would sell gold in large quantities, this would up prices on the AH, then the farmers would place desirable items on the AH for large amounts of money. Basically one would end up paying back the farmers with the money they bought from them, meaning that said farmers had a monopoly and the only way to survive would be to buy from them. Those of us that wouldn't had to stick it out with lower-end stuff or drops. That's just the way it works.
I've never supported that simply because I've seen what it does to the AH. In fact, on the servers I was on, a Guild of mine was actually devoted to bringing down AH averages (because most people use an Addon to measure that stuff anyway). We'd put resources and drops we didn't want up on there at lower prices and y'know what? It worked. Over a time, our Guild actually did lower the cost curve for certain types of resources and even items. We kept close tabs on this, it was our pride.
For that reason alone I'd be kind of against gold-farming and I'm glad to see that this isn't something that Ace or you (Kael) supports. Three cheers for that, says I. One day we might see an end to this farming and people like my Guild can lay down their Robin Hood hats once and for all.
good news about WoW is that it has one of the least effected economeies in compaired to many other mmos. BoP and BoE have fixed a lot of the things that would be prime targets for farmers. Not saying it doesn't happen, but I've been in games that where a lot worse.
This is true, it's still not City of Heroes/Villains (what could be?) in economy but of the those systems out there that rely heavily on cash, it is one of the better ones, no argument there. There's just a lot of room for improvement, is all. I think the Robin Hoods out there really need to organize under one banner, watch the market for high-priced things and purposefully try to strike down those elements and make them less profitable.
You know the one thing I always wished that wasn't possible though? AH-buy-bind. Basically, anything bought from the AH can't be resold on the AH. The reason for this is because even though many people make an effort to lower AH prices at the moment, there's always going to be some money-grubber (usually of the farmer category) who'll take large items in bulk and put them up at double their prices. A lot of people might hate me for a suggestion like that but I really think it'd do a lot to fix the economy, especially with people working to fix it from the inside too.
I didn't want to turn this into a discussion of the AH and economy though and divagate wildly from the main topic. It's just that I've had these things on my mind for a while and since I'm no longer playing, I'm in no place to make official suggestions. The very least I can do is inspire people to help create a more fair AH, though.
only thing bad about bind-on-buy would be the stuff I buy on my mule (cause he has my cash) and send to my other characters.. And I guess if you want 8 of something, but there's a stack of 10 for cheaper than getting 8 another way.. you'd be stuck with 2 extra and would have to vendor them since you couldn't resell them back on AH.
That's actually a very good point, I wouldn't condone a nazi-strict system either yet I do think the AH needs some balancing. So the point comes down to how to make both ideas work, what would be a happy medium? I originally thought that perhaps a special type of bind that allowed you to transfer between all characters on an account might do it but no, even that's a little too tight for my tastes. After a period of thought, it came to me. SecondLife, actually having a decent economy, has the answer. What we'd do is set it so that it can be freely given or traded but it can't be put up on the AH. Instead of a bind flag, it'd be more like an anti-AH flag. So if an item has already been on the AH once, it can't go there again.
I see problems with this, what of stacks? I am having trouble trying to rationalize a solution here and I can't really think of one that'd make everyone happy. Perhaps what we could have are bound stacks, in other words, stacks which can't be combined with other stacks. So if you have a stack of gold bars which you've mined and a stack you've bought off the AH, you couldn't toss them together. That's one solution but it's far from perfect as I'm sure you'll agree. So what's the solution?
I have an idea but it's a bit complicated. Firstly, any trades that include an anti-AH flagged items would be noted as so, there'd be an alert in the window, mousing over the items would reveal in the tooltip which items or which parts of a stack are anti-AH. So if someone trades you 10 gold bars and 3 of those have that flag, it'd show that 3 of those bars can't be sold on the AH. What would happen then, if you tried to sell those bars on the AH, the AH would only accept 7 and shun the other 3 automatically.
The AH would also notify the person it's doing this of course. Either via just a warning or a popup informing them and asking them if they really do want to split that stack.
I'm sure more ingenious people with better ideas can come up with solutions that're even more suitable than these but I think what we have here might be the start at least towards fixing the community, not that Blizzard would ever listen (of course) but hey, it's fun to talk about these things because if they were implemented, they probably would solve a hell of a lot of the problems today. Just imagine how this would stunt the efforts of farmers without harming anyone else.
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Oh and of course, only items after the patch would be introduced to this flag. So if you already had a mixed stack in your bag, it would be as if you mined them yourself but all other items from that point would use the flag. This would be in fairness to the people who'd used the old system so they couldn't get the cold shoulder by not knowing better (no alert) in a previous trade.