[GW2] Black Lion PvP

I play the market in Guild Wars 2 in spurts. One of my goals is to get a permanent merchant contract eventually, which will set me back a cool 150-200 gold. In cash I have about 15% of what I need. So I’ve been dutifully playing the market every day trying to build that amount passively.

Compared to the so-called Black Lion barons, I am small potatoes. I would say at any given time I am only moving around 5 gold, though that amount is slowly building up. I would guess on that amount I make 30-50 silver per day. I am getting more comfortable with what I am doing as well as getting the feel of the market. I would be pretty happy making 1 gold per day off the market, and I think that is a reasonable goal.

One thing I’ve noticed in the market is how the market responds to information. Some parts are really interesting, such as Karka Shells, which spiked the other night to double that amount. I have no idea why that happened. The market responded and the next morning had created the first shoulder because it would spike against last night. I was sitting on quite a few Karka Shells, but given the puzzling spike I decided to sit on them to figure out why that happened. With the current information it’s quite possible that someone with 1000s of gold caused the spike to incite the market. If the baron buys on the upswing and starts dumping portions of the initial buy, there is significant profit that can be made without worrying about when it will peak. Someone could have also found a new Mystic Forge recipe. It’s hard to tell, and I feel powerless seeing such dramatic movements like that.

What I can do is snipe Black Lion poachers. Unfortunately the selling tab in the Black Lion Trading Post hides necessary information. People can see the top buy order and the lowest sell order. What they do not see that is critical to playing the market are the other lowest sell orders. Poachers will take the top buy order with a meager market wall (100 or so buy orders), and then they will create a small blind with the lowest sell order priced next to the buy order. When Average Joe goes to sell the item, they see that the buy orders and sell orders are incredibly close (usually just 1 copper), and since time is money, friend, they choose to immediately sell the item to the standing buy orders not knowing that the sell order is way too low. Their items were poached. It’s fun to catch these poachers in the act. It’s pretty much free money.

Last morning I was messing around with Mithril Boot Casings. I picked up a few of my buy orders and headed to the right tab to resell them. A Black Lion poacher had set up a sell order of 10 Mithril Boot Casings 1 copper’s difference from a hefty buy order. His sell order was 1.5 silver lower than the next sell order, which is about half the price. So I picked up the poacher’s 10 instantly removing the superficial sell order blind and placed them just under the next standing sell order. I would make over a silver per Mithril Boot Casing on the poacher’s blind, and I got that nice PvP feeling knowing that I had outplayed the poacher.

For most wanted items the market is too strong to allow this to happen. The sell order wall created by the poacher would be removed so quickly there would be no way for the poacher to benefit. But for slower markets, watch out for these kind of traps. Disarm them if you can too because if you do, you will likely profit at the poacher’s expense.


PSA: Be sure to check out Guild Wars 2 Trading Post and Black Lions Profit if you want to learn more about playing the market.  They are the two most honest, most informative Guild Wars 2 market blogs out there (and neither promotes any black market gold selling).

14 thoughts on “[GW2] Black Lion PvP”

  1. Excellent post! I’m also interested in playing the market. However, for now, I’ve been saving up my gold to level other crafting profession. Are you using GW2 Spidy to look at item trending? I haven’t gotten into flipping but there are certain items I create that have huge upticks in price for reasons still unknown to me. I hold of selling when the price is down and slam them all up for auction when the price is high.

    1. Yeah, Spidy and those two blogs for ideas. It is smart to watch the market to sell higher. Sometimes it can be hard to time, but it is worth watching at least the cycles between weekday/weekends or day/night to get a few extra silver.

      1. I see. As a by-product of your post (link hopping), I found a link that lets you download GW2 Spidy data. hooray! I’d like to alter his profit calculations which assume too many of the items were purchased even when they can be harvested or produced.

        When I have a chance I’m going to create a template that will visualize the raw data dump in an analytic/dashboard tool I use for work, Tableau, that also has a free reader app.

        Downloads GW2 Spidy data in a comma delimited file

        1. What many people don’t seem to realize is that items that can be harvested or produced must be valued as if they were purchased to calculate profit properly. Harvested resources are not free resources, but have to be valued at their market price to determine whether it is more profitable to turn those resources into a product or to sell them directly. For example, if you can buy hardened boot soles for less than you can buy the hardened leather needed to make them, then it makes more economic sense to sell your leather and buy the boot soles rather than crafting them, since the price difference ends up in your pocket as profit.

        2. I see you’re point but I don’t agree. When you’re harvesting as a result of being out in the world doing other activity, I feel the harvested goods are in fact free. And you shouldn’t be producing or selling anything that sells for less than the raw materials. That’s common sense. GW2 spidy will help you determine that much. What I don’t like is the profit calculation which doesn’t apply the purchased vs. harvested options consistently. This means I can’t sort/rank by profit because they’re not wholly accurate.

  2. A lone player can really impact the price of individual items. A few weeks ago someone decided they wanted to corner the market in potatoes, they bought them all up and relisted them for 10s each. Now this was completely stupid, because there is two relatively accessible potato farms in the starting zones, which give about 10 potatoes each so, so whoever did it was giving players who noticed it the opportunity to get 1-2 g per alt. The price quickly tanked and was back to normal the next day. While the market was readjusting there was someone putting a buy order in for 1 potato at 5.5s almost continuously that got immediately filled, I know because I had to spam the sell button, that really points to someone not being the sharpest tool in the box. Next day the prices of seaweed did the same, now that’s when things get really ridiculous because seaweed is only used for one cooking recipe as far as I know. Even If someone was speculating on a future use and buying up all stock, trying to manipulate the price like that really points to someone with too much time and ingame gold on their hands.

    For the karka shells I’d say it is plenty of players with the idea that there is going to be a big surge in demand for them when new ascended gear is released, or they are getting in while they are cheap for their own use, and they are thinking that will happen with the January update.

    Edit: or so I thought but looking at the graph again, there is a huge difference in volumes for sale, now I’m curious why that is.

    1. Are Karka used in legendary items? I’m seeing way more people getting close to creating their sub components but not nearly enough of them are farming those shells in Southsun Cove. I barely see a half dozen people at once in the zone and they’re all running for the Ori nodes like I am when I’m out there.

      1. 250 karka shells are needed for some of infusions that are slotted into ascended items, but the infusions made with 100 passion flowers are more desirable. They are needed for apothecary gear but I doubt anyone would buy them for that, because you’d need 30 per piece of exotic armour.

    1. I think it summons a merchant with the buy/sell options. Combine that with the Trading Post contract and you can be more timely and aggressive with crafting and selling. Are there portal crafting stations??? I always want one when I’m standing around waiting for Journag after I’ve harvested and am tired of farming mobs.

      I wish the Gem Store was available outside of the game client. :-(

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