The Vanishing Mini Market (Guild Wars)

It seems the Hall of Monuments craziness is affecting even people that did not really hit it off with Guild Wars. Somehow I made it to 35 points even though I am years of grind away from the ultimate Guild Wars title. I think I am going to try for 45 points, but it’s really all fun and games now. I like the 30 point title “Closer to the Stars” better than “Ghostly Hero” (35) and “Flameseeker” (40) anyway.

There are five prongs to the Hall of Monuments: gaming achievements, player armor, companion armor, weapons, and miniatures. The first four are all based on player activity. Need companion armor? Play some challenge missions. Need weapons? Grind out some precious stones or Krytan trophies. Need miniatures? Fill out the available character slots and wait a couple years.

Miniatures, like Hall of Monuments weapons, become bound to the player when they become dedicated to the Hall of Monuments. They are then obviously taken off the market with regard to the Hall of Monuments. Unlike weapons, the majority of miniatures cannot be ground out. There are a small handful that can be randomly dropped from things like the weekly Gifts of the Traveler (<0.1%) and Royal Gifts (~0.2-0.3%), a quest, or a magazine promo, but the majority of miniatures on the market are gained from a character’s birthday present.

Every year that a character persists, a birthday present appears in the character’s inventory. On the first birthday, the present will give 1 of 14 first-year minis. After two years, the present will give 1 of 14 second-year minis. And, so on up to five-year presents. So right now, barring the mere handful that can be ground out, a character can create 5 miniatures after 5 years of persistence. Yet, I would guess the percentage of characters that are five years old are relatively minor.

So let’s make up some math. If I assume that the average character age is 2.5 years and each account has 5 characters, then each “average” account has made roughly 13 miniatures. Then there is a pretty good chance that some of those miniatures will be duplicates.  You can make up your own numbers, as I have, based on your own gut feelings, but with a whopping 50 unique miniatures needed to finish the Hall of Monuments “Devotion” trophy case, it will take multiple active accounts to feed one finished account. I believe it will take more than one account to hit the first tier of 20 unique miniatures.

Why is this important? Well, I see a lot of talk about how people are waiting for the market to break. With second-year common minis going for 10-15k each, I wish the demand would drop as well.  I don’t think it will. Right now, miniatures are being sacrificed to the Hall of Monuments at likely the fastest rate ever. As people finish their 50, give up, or eventually move on to Guild Wars 2, that rate will slow.  Yet, the supply is not going to magically bounce back. The surplus that people have been sitting on for 5 years will not magically replenish… except for once per character per year.

Therefore, I believe the demand is not going to drop at least until Guild Wars 2 releases. Then, I don’t think many people are going to come back to Guild Wars to sell their yearly miniatures. The best plan, in my humble opinion, is to get the black moa mini via the material gathering quest, get a Canthan New Year mini, and then get a birthday present. Then focus on getting Hall of Monuments points from places that can be controlled to get to 30 points. Good luck either way.


11 thoughts on “The Vanishing Mini Market (Guild Wars)”

  1. If you haven’t yet purchased Nightfall, I think the collector’s edition comes with a Unique mini. That’s a point right there.

    1. I confirm, used to have the Varesh but I sold it and now I feel really screwed. Doubly so that the Factions collector also provides the Kuunavang green mini that I also sold.

  2. While I may never reach 50 unique minis, but I am lucky enough to have at least one rare and one unique for the collection. My problem now (and yes, I know it is a silly “problem” to have) is deciding which character should get them in the Hall of Monuments.

    Minis, as you note, are not exactly like the other items that can be dedicated in the Hall. The armor and weapons may take time, but each character can get them if I want. The minis? Not so much.

    Do I put them all on one “main”? Do I let each individually dedicate the ones they have gotten as presents?

    Bad enough that my packrat nature eats up storage space by making me keep each and every unique mini I have, now I have to play favorites with my characters.

    1. I’m not sure I understand your dilemma. A dedicated mini can still be ‘used’ by any character, so you can dedicate them with any character, and then use them with another if you want to. It just can’t be re-sold to someone who wants to add it to their HoM.

      Or did you know that, and that’s why you pre-tagged your problem as ‘silly’?

      1. Yep, I know that. And yes, that is why it is a bit of a silly problem. It is like how some people are bothered when they can’t get their characters in the exact order they’d like on the character select screen and others don’t see that as anything even remotely important. :)

        1. Character select screen re-ordering! When City of Heroes went to having multiple pages of characters, my main got moved to page 2, behind low-level alts I have rarely used. Why, sweet mother of suffering, why?!

          1. You can reorder them now in City of Heroes. It works quite nicely. All my retired level 50 characters have been moved to the dead space of page 2.

            I was in shock and disarray when I played COH from my laptop during a recent work trip. They were all shuffled around again! I had to spent an hour reorganizing their positions.

  3. I have 12 characters and would guess that most people have more than five. Owning all three campaigns gives you eight slots and I would think that most people don’t keep rerolling, so your estimates might be a little low.

  4. There are 14 minis in each annual series. How many chars do people have? And how many of them are older than 2-3 years, especially if they joined late.
    Getting 4th and 5th year white minis will become problematic especially if people want the 50 before GW2 launches, even if they can still add them afterwards.

    Darcy is quite right, around 8 chars should not be uncommon. But 8×5 is still only 40. There are a few sources of non-birthday minis, but it seems that trading is way to go. I bet some of the guys selling all minis except the pretty ones now feel kinda bad about it.

    The market would have been very different if people would have known that the minis will one day become THAT important for the Hall of Monuments!

    I have 68 unique minipets, but I know I once considered stopping after a full HoM rack which is 20 minipets.

  5. I think back to all of the minis I tossed in the trash bin because they weren’t worth the time to sell in town. I kept my favorite 20, the rest were deleted dedicated or not.
    Luckily I had 50 pts on day 1…

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