Monday, July 12, 2010

WoW Economy - a.k.a Was I An Asshole?

Not a whole lot gets on my nerves in game, but one of things that will get me slightly upset is if I get a whisper from a level 10 whatever wanting a port to Dalaran.  Maging ain't easy though.  I usually do it for about 10 gold, but of course lower levels won't have that much, so if the player is less than 80, I take much less.  I will explain my reasoning behind this later.

I had a level 80 while in Ironforge ask me for a port to Dalaran.  I told him my fee was 10 gold and he said no thank you.  Actually, if he would have said no thank you, that would have been nice.  Instead, he called me out for charging 10 gold for a port to Dalaran.

Now, to understand my reasoning behind this takes a little bit of understanding of my job.  I hate it when I tell people I am a pharmacist and they immediately label me as a pill counter.  No, I'm not a pill counter.  I actually work in a hospital as a clinical pharmacist as well as working with the pharmacy informatics.  I actually very rarely count any pills.  The robot we have is a pill counter, not me.  I am a Board Certified Pharmacotherapy Specialist.  The reason I bring this up is if I was just a "pill counter", you could pay me less.  However, the other skills I bring to the table make it where you have to pay me more for my services.

Now getting back to the mage, here are the reasons I charge 10 gold.  First off, for a level 80, you should crap 10 gold for breakfast.  You can turn in one Argent Tourney quest and get 23 gold.  The second reason is that, as the goblins say, "Time is money".  I am saving you time so you can get back to Dalaran and do whatever you need to.  That is paying for my service plus the cost of the reagent.  Also, it is supply versus demand.  I'm the only level 80 mage here, so you want it, I have it, and I can set the price.  Third, and the final reason that made him finally shut up about it, is I am willing to barter.  If the guy I was dealing with was not an asshole about it, I would have let him pay me 5 gold or even less.  This is a service that in no way benefits me, but benefits the person who is receiving it.

However, I can also see where my line of logic could get into trouble as well.  I am sure we have all ran across the asshole elitist tank who says that he will tank this instance for 100 gold from each person to cover possible repair cost.  Yes, tanks do have more repair cost than most other classes.  However, the difference between this and what I do is the tank still gets a benefit from running this 5 man.  He still gets Frost emblems and Triumph emblems, which even if he doesn't need gear, he could use for rep, gems, or heirlooms.  Plus, I would say that 75% of the WoW players still need some ICC gear likely from the vendor.  I'm still trying to get the tank neck with Frost badges.  After that, I will probably be buying some primordial saronite to sell and make some money.  There is probably no one in this game right now who cannot benefit from 5 mans.    

So, what should be services to charge for and what should not.  Here is my list of things to charge for and things to not charge for:

Charge People (At Least Tips) For
Cutting Gems
Armor/Weapon Making
Portals (If not in a raid instance)
Elixirs/Potion Making
Do Not Charge People For
Summons into Raid
Joining a guild (Although the GM paying for signatures is okay)
Gear Drops (I am okay in guild runs to charge for mounts though, like Sarth+3)

 Really, what it comes down to is the benefit of yourself and the uniqueness of your service versus the expectations of a group.  A group expects you to tank or heal.  A group expects you to summon into a raid.  However, if you are a tailor and somebody wants you to make something and has the mats, they should be willing to pay a small gold fee for you to make it.  It would be the equivalent of  you taking hamburger meat to a local fast food place and asking for free hamburgers.  It is not gonna happen.  They have to pay for their equipment, employees, etc.

I would love to hear your opinion about this.  Do you just charge tips or do you charge a flat fee for your profession services?  Also,  have you seen people charge for raiding/5 man services like tanking or healing?

Also, broken record time, remember the Christmas in July contest.  We have two entries which means you have a great chance of getting some free stuff.


Windsoar said...

I was always charge for portals unless I'm going myself. I used to make low levels wait while I rounded up other customers so that I could make one port for 4 people. Mercenary indeed.

However, in your tanking / healing scenario, I don't see a problem with charging because I am assuming this is occurring outside the bounds of the LFD system. As a tank myself, I frequently set aside time to chain run instances once a week or see for friends because you can get so many dungeons done in a very short amount of time.

As a DPS, finding a reliable tank that's willing to stay with me for X amount of time may be worth the cost, and I definitely wouldn't have a problem with them charging.

Now, a LFD tank or healer complaining can just shove it. They're getting instant queues, and if they get 1 bad run a day, they're still way ahead of any dps in terms of cash return/badges from the instance.

Redhawks said...


I guess I was thinking in the realm of LFD. If somebody wants my time to tank more than 5 dungeons for them, they better be either (a) in my guild or (b) paying me. That is where time comes into play.

Now for LFD. No, tanks should not be charging for that.