Muten left me a comment asking what had happened to the crew and the blog. Perfect timing. Let’s look back at what has happened, what we achieved, what we didn’t achieve and what we’re planning for the future. Feel free to join me.
I – The Crew
I love movies that give you a small glimpse of what eventually happens to the characters. Jane married and finally got in touch with her mom again, Jimmy combined his love for space with his Lego collection and shot himself to Titan and Jeremy joined a Hippie commune in Iowa. So what has happened to the crew.
Our Demon Huntress got a job at a local don’t-ask-me-what-exactly-they-do company. She’s working nine to five during the week and almost completely stopped playing Diablo 3. What she still does though, is crafting and selling gems – and writing about it.
We had problems integrating Mike from the get go. Not only the fact, that he wasn’t on-site, but also his irregular working schedule made it hard to include him in our team. Add an unforeseen family emergency to that and you get the reasons why I haven’t heard from him in weeks. Sometimes priorities simply shift.
Rob’s enthusiasm declined visibly once our hardcore two-week perma gaming ended. With his final exams on the horizon, his barb giving him a hard time in Inferno and the game simply not being what he had hoped for, he had to divide his time between work and gaming. Not to mention Dota 2, which somehow seems to be a lot better at grabbing and holding its player’s attention than Diablo 3 does at this time.
Cash and Saphirus – aka “The two Daniels”
That leaves Saphirus and me – which isn’t all that bad. We still take Diablo 3 serious. While he focuses on farming, I keep an eye on the auction house and creating a baseline income from D3. I really enjoy working with Saphirus. He’s a relaxed, hard-working dude and he keeps me grounded (and working).
II – Making money
The question I get asked the most is: “Can you really make money with Diablo 3?” My answer usually is quite cryptic, so this time I’ll try to not bullshit you. Yes. Yes, you can. Is it enough to live from? It might be. Some day. And it is – for some people. But it’s not for us. At least not yet. So why not?
The first few weeks
The time after Diablo 3′s launch was dominated by black (or grey?) market sales. Selling Softcore Gold, selling Hardcore Gold, selling Diablo 3 weapons through ebay. Stuff like that. The real money auction house wasn’t live yet and people made a killing selling to the needy. There’re stories on the net about people making hundreds and thousands of bucks.
We didn’t. Why? Cause that wasn’t how we wanted to play it. We’ve worked in the industry for a few years and we both didn’t feel good about breaking the rules. Well almost. I had someone on IRC asking if anybody was selling gold and I sold him a million for 20 bucks. I felt dirty afterwards. Our business is about making money – legit. That might not be the easiest and most lucrative way, but we believe it’s the right one.
Since the RMAH got released we’ve been working on ways to constantly create income. Instead of doing risky high value flips, we settled on sure flips. Instead of selling all our gems or gold, when the commodity and gold markets opened, we settled on staying liquid. We experimented a bit with crafting, lost a little money here and there, spent some money on upgrading our characters to make farming more lucrative. Not counting the equipment we’re wearing and some high value items we still have on stash, we’re sitting at roughly 400 bucks. That’s not a lot, but it’s a start.
III – The future
After chasing after the golden goose for a while, we realized we wouldn’t find it. At least not right now. We needed another baseline. An item that we’d be able to convert to cash. One we’d be able to calculate with. We found gold. At a conversion rate of 0.25€ per 100k (before “taxes”) it’s not awesome, but reliable. We also started trading on the US market. It seems more active than the European one. We’ll see.
The next few weeks I’ll try to get into a routine. Auction house checks, Blogging, Networking, create KPIs, see what happens – and tell you about it.