Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Riding High on the Sale of Small Eggs

Pull up a stool and order a pint of mead!

Here are more details on the fall of Baklava, and the ascendancy of Blaniage, as told by my brother.


In the vernacular of World of Warcraft (WoW), my "main" (my most powerful or highest level character) is now Blaniage, a Blood Elf hunter. He's a Horde "toon", which is to say he is at war with all Alliance toons. Baklava, my Night Elf Druid, was in the Alliance.

Although I already had one Horde toon (Mazgul, the unfortunately named Undead Warlock), Blaniage was my first Horde character after my upgrade to the Burning Crusade (the WoW expansion pack, the purchase of which serves as irrefutable evidence of my growing WoW addiction). The Blood Elf race was added in the expansion pack. I started playing Blaniage around Christmas. I remember this not because of anything occuring in the real world, but because Christmas occurs around the same time as the Winter Festival in WoW. As in the real world, the Winter Festival means baking, and baking means small eggs.

There is an economy in WoW. Toons needing supplies can go to a number of vendors specializing in various products or disciplines, but some items must be found or purchased at a considerable mark-up from other players via the Auction House. Think of the Auction House as an in-game eBay. Blaniage was not born with a silver spoon, but he was born next to a thriving colony of relatively weak dragons whose corpses were lousy with small eggs. Through hard work and the exploitation of other players frantic to complete Winter Festival quests involving the baking of gingerbread cookies, Blaniage made a killing in the small egg market. At the peak of the gingerbread cookie frenzy, a clutch of small eggs normally fetching 10 silver sold for 5 gold. That's a five thousand percent mark-up!

I now had a very poor Alliance Night Elf Druid, desperately in need of cash to complete his training, and a very wealthy Horde Blood Elf Hunter with nothing on which to spend his vast virtual fortune. Fortunately, WoW has a mail delivery service so that different toons can trade objects, money, and well wishes/death threats. Unfortunately, mail sent to opposite sides of the WoW war is not permitted. It seemed I needed to choose sides myself: the virtuous but poor Baklava, or the opportunist and wealthy Blaniage. Blaniage it was. I stopped playing Baklava at level 27; Blaniage is now level 43.

I've mentioned before that my biggest complaint about WoW is that it takes so long to get from place to place. This is primarily due to the fact that there is no transportation for low-level characters. Lower level toons literally run across continents to complete quests, and there's no "wake me up when we get there" for the toon owner. You have to plod right along with your toon. Baklava once swam across an entire ocean just to open a trunk containing an item required to gain his water form. I sat there with my forefinger pressed firmly against the up arrow button for a solid hour, watching Baklava swim. At level 40, characters rich enough can purchase a mount. Blaniage, once lousy rich with gold, is now poor, but he does have a mount.



Blaniage and his mount

I asked my brother a little more detail about the mount, how much does it cost, did you name it, etc. Here is his response:

The mount only cost 8 gold 50 silver, but it cost 90 gold to train to ride it. Can't name a mount, unfortunately. They're chattel.


Jon the Intergalactic Gladiator said...

Well, it's a nice mount at any rate.

Manx said...

That Blaniage sure is regal.

Let us hope the best for our well-to-do small egg entrepreneur and his chattel.

I'm looking forward to more "in the virtual field" reporting of his exploits.