ArcheAge Auction House Guide by HuskyTheNubbin
The auction house in ArcheAge is a fickle thing at the moment and should be approached with some caution. Don’t get me wrong, you can make big profits while the game is still settling, but you can make big losses in a very short time too, you have been warned…
Simple sums: You’re basic sum you should always do when selling on the auction house is SalePrice x 0.9 This will tell you how much money you actually get from the sale as the auction house takes 10%.
The second sum you want to have ready is BuyingPrice/0.9 this will let you know what you have to sell something at to break even on it.
The final sum is %profit, which is worked out as ((SalePricex0.9)/Buying price)x100 This lets you know how profitable that investment is, it takes out the gut feeling and guess work when dealing with varying profits.
Selling 5 Charcoal for 5g on AH. 0.9×5 = 4.5g to you.
Buying 10 workers potions at 8g each for later resale. 80/0.9 = 88.89g relisting price to break even.
Preparation: You can’t just hop in and start making solid profit, you need to first understand what things are worth, when they cost most and when they are cheap. You are going to need to watch the market closely in order to do this and I would recommend picking a few items to watch at first to get the hang of it. You will also need a pot of gold, the saying “it takes money to make money” is very true here, the more money you are investing the larger the returns you can see in a shorter period of time. You don’t need a fortune to start with (that’s what you want afterwards), just enough to make your first investments. Finally, you need an understanding of the game itself, your profit margins will very much depend on your knowledge of the game, in terms of both player behaviors and material requirements (e.g. charcoal may not be cheap on Saturday but it may plummet on Sunday after guilds get rewarded for Saturdays hard work 22hrs later).
What not to invest in: I’m going to throw this in early to save you wasting time. Don’t bother bidding on common items as they expire for super cheap bid prices. It may look great, but due to the current bot status in AA you are basically never going to win any. The bots scan the AH and compare the final bid price with historical data on the value of that item, you cannot win other than being extremely lucky with timing. By all means give it a go, there is no money loss as you pick it back up out of your mailbox. Importantly, don’t invest all your money in one place, all you’ll do is lock it up and potentially lose a lot of it in the process if the market turns sour.
Proficiency leveling and AH playing: These two activities are such a good combination, essentially you are doing the grind for either someone in a different proficiency or someone higher than you are in the same proficiency. For this type of AH work, you buy the components of something for a low price, whip them together into the final item and then pop it straight back on the AH. You are converting your labour into cash, and this is a key thing to understand as labour is not free (as much as it feels like it). Labour can be assigned a monetary value and that is dictated by the current trading price of the workers potion. Simply take the current worker pot price and divide it by 1000 to find a single labour point value, you then multiply that by whatever the labour cost is of your crafting activity, finally deduct that number from your profits. Including the labour cost as gold is something many people miss and leads to hidden losses within a transaction. A real plus side of including labour cost in your math is knowing that you can comfortably buy a labour potion and not eat into your profits by an unknown amount, you can keep crafting and making profit as fast as you can pop potions and as long as the market holds. Proficiency leveling works because it is a designed game mechanic, as a low level you are doing grunt work for a higher level crafter, also the bots don’t dominate this market like they do with simple resale.
Find a good location: Whatever type of AH games you are playing, you are going to want to find a comfortable location to base yourself. The three major things you want right next to each other are; auctioneer, mailbox and warehouse. Don’t pick somewhere busy, it just becomes a nightmare accessing the auctioneer and just adds to lag in the area. If you are leveling a proficiency, find a place with the particular bench you need as close as possible.
Flooding the market: This is a big one to avoid, market prices revolve around supply and demand, if the supply outstrips the demand, things will get cheap, if demand becomes higher than supply, prices go up. If you suddenly dump a large supply of an item on the market, it will simply drive prices down and you will either not sell them or sell them at a loss. The larger the batch you list at once, the more chance there is for someone to list below your prices. The AH has a recommended sell price that many people use to list, it will make people list slightly lower than the cheapest price per item and push you off the top of the list. You have a short period of time, from when you list to the next person listing a big batch, to sell all of your goods and if you list too many you won’t sell them all in time. The numbers of an item you can sell at one time depend on the item itself and the current market conditions.
Sale batches: When you list, don’t group things in huge batches, no one wants to buy 1000 charcoal at one time nor do they have the means to do so. People who craft with charcoal are more likely to buy batches of 3 or 6 or 12 due to that quantity being used in many recipes without them having cluttering leftovers. You have to work out what people use the material for and what batches they want it supplied in to maximise your profit. When you list, always take a look at how the current items are listed, you don’t need to list your items at a lower price than the batch of 1000 you only need to list it at a price slightly lower than other smaller batch listings. Huge sale batches lock up a market and force it cheaper, no one can buy it and most people auto list lower than it, this is good for you buying but bad for selling.
Profit vs time: It’s no good making a 5% profit if it takes you 3 days to do it. Tying your money up in a long term low return investment is a waste. Long term large return investments are great if you have some questing to get on with, but the ideal is something that sells as soon as you list it, then you are only limited by how quickly you can click. When you start off and have a small pot of gold, you will be listing basic items that people need very regularly, you might make a smaller return on these items but you can do it so quickly the profits stack up nicely. As you make more money the investments may be longer term and hopefully make more money. If for example converting logs to lumber gives you a 5% return (remember to include real labour cost) then you could probably saw logs up all day and see a good return, they sell fast letting you get on with the next batch ASAP. e.g. Throughout the day you saw up 3000 logs to 1000 lumber, you make 50 copper profit per lumber, that’s 5 gold profit for a 100 gold investment… Not great you think? Well, include the fact you just leveled your carpentry by 5000 and gained 275000exp for free and it isn’t looking too bad!
Labour: Scoff labour potions like the magical liquid of joy they are. Remember, labour is common throughout your account so you can mail an alt (or many alts) potions they can drink while your main is still waiting for it’s cool-down. Because you include labour in your profit calculations, you know that you can justify the expense. Just make sure you take the potions in advance of what you are doing, not when you run out, the sooner that timer expires the sooner you can get back to making money.
I hope this was useful to some people, it’d be great if other auction house entrepreneurs correct anything I’ve got wrong or add tips of their own. I play on Eanna (Husky), when you get rich feel free to mail me a thunderstruck to help me fulfill my dream of sitting on a fishing boat during a nice sunset. ^Other ArcheAge Articles
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