Ah the holidays. It's a time for families and friends getting together, children laughing, peace on Azeroth... and loot. Lots and lots of loot. Buying loot. Giving loot. Getting loot. Whether in the real world or in-game, when this time of year comes around, loot is all around us. So it seems as good a time as any to talk about casual players and loot.
I've actually wanted to tackle this topic ever since a comment in the leveling before Wrath column. Commenter Rob said that for speedy leveling, you should never loot unless you need to -- implying only for collection quests. So I want to spend a little time explaining my position on looting.
Loot. Or, to be more clear... Loot!
Loot all the time. Loot everything. Loot, loot, loot.
The argument against looting is that it takes up too much time and you can always get everything you need from your high level main or the AH.
Now, this is a column by a casual player for casual players. This is often lost on some readers, even though the word Casually is in the title and I often throw in an extra casual in there, just to emphasize the subject matter (see the Winter Veil guide and the Patch 3.0.8 guide for examples). Casual players don't necessarily have a stable of level 80s from whom to take cash and twink items. We often have a lot of alts, each with their own professions. And we tend to solo a lot because getting into groups takes time that we often don't have -- which means our instance gear is sorely lacking. So getting bankrolled by a main and shopping heavily at the Auction House are not assumptions that can be made about the casual player.
The Spousal Unit is a hardcore raider. He plays every free moment and many moments that are arguably not free. As I write this, he is tanking 10 man Naxx. And he completely agrees with me. Loot, loot, loot. How else are you going to save up for a cool ride? (Oh no, now I have this song running through my head).
Here are some tips for maximizing your loot and minimizing the time it takes to do it:
- Autoloot: Go to Game Menu, Interface, Controls and check the Autoloot box. It not only saves a lot of time, but it makes it much easier and more efficient to Herb, Mine, Skin and Fish.
- Get the biggest bags you can afford: Netherweave bags are 16 slots and tend to be cheaper than Traveler's Backpacks and Mooncloth Bags because they are BoE. You can usually get them for 10 to 15 gold. Running back to sell is time consuming and destroying things is inefficient when you are short on cash.
- Make a Bank Alt: Bank alts are good for two things: holding things you don't have room for in your bank and selling things on the AH. Any time you head back to town, mail anything you want to save or sell to your bank alt to free up bank space.
- Use Auctioneer: But only put it on your Bank Alt. Auctioneer is very heavy on the memory usage. The data in Auctioneer is only as good as how often you scan, so do it once a day. Also, you need to use it intelligently. Auctioneer doesn't know that Inscription requires low end herbs for research and that Peacebloom should be sold for 5g a stack, not 20s like back in the old days.
- Vendor Grays: You've probably seen this on the loading screen tips as well. Grays aren't used for quests or crafting so you can safely sell them to a vendor. If you are short on bagspace, then destroy grays except for weapons. Starting from around level 40, gray weapons will vendor for gold.
- AH Whites: If you don't need it for crafting or questing, then someone else probably does. Some things are faction specific or far too common, so make sure you're not selling them for less on the AH than what a vendor will give you. I find that the market for Wicked Claws, for example, is not too strong on my server, so I just vendor those.
- Disenchant and/or AH Greens/Blues/Purples you can't use: Sometimes the disenchanted value of an item is greater than what someone is willing to buy it for. Anything of the Boar, for example, is not going to sell -- who needs the combination of Strength and Spirit? And while getting a world drop of an BoE Epic Item can get your heart pumping, when you find out it's just another Icemail Jerkin, you may be disappointed.
- Keep AH spending to a minimum: Some classes are very gear dependent and you need to fill in the gaps by keeping an eye out for bargains on the AH, but any gear you get after level 50 will be replaced with something uber within a couple levels after reaching Outland. Unless you think AH shopping is a whole lot of fun, your time will be better spent questing and gathering more loot.
And on a more serious note, I wish you all happy holidays that are completely drama free.