Open Beta Weekend Saw Refunds Galore

There were so many refunds during Open Beta this past weekend. No, I don't mean players refunding their pre-order of Diablo 3, I'm talking about a much more important statistic. Nearly every time I used gold to buy crafting materials, I received a refund for my purchase.

Refund for Subtle Essences
When I gave the best Auction House Tutorial Ever, I explained why you get refunds in Diablo 3. Basically, there are due to trades made between the time you saw the price of your commodity purchase and when you clicked the buyout button. Like I said, nearly every time I purchased crafting materials some of my gold came back to me.

There were two reasons why it came back:

  1. The auction house found cheaper deals for me than what I had agreed to pay and so it refunded me the difference.
  2. Someone else purchased my items, so the auction house refunded me for the amount of items that I could no longer access.

Obviously, quite a few people were making trades as the open beta wound down. These were players who would no longer be playing the game after the weekend (until release) and so they were willing to part with all of their gold in order to try out some new gear. After all, what did they have to lose? Because of this fact, I was able to sell quite a few items for ridiculously unrealistic prices. A pair of gloves with 17 intellect for 50,000 gold? Yeah I'd say that's a little absurd.

But knowing your audience and how they think is important, so I consider this aspect of Open Beta to just be an exercise in playing the markets. For example, players wanted +stat, +weapon speed, +movement speed, and high dps weapons. They didn't care very much about +gold find, +magic find or even +experience find like the more regular beta players tend to. Vendor items sold great too, as I found out by logging in and out until I purchased a few +5% weapon speed and +2-4 damage rings. They each sold for 4,000 to 8,000 gold and cost me under 3,000 each.

Subtle Essences Fluctuating in Price
Now, getting back to the refunds. We saw the most active and closest representation of how many auctions we will see after Diablo 3's release. Literally, I could click "search" for the price of a commodity and watch it changing in real time. For example, I clicked on search for 100x Subtle Essences and the price was 100 gold each. A second later I clicked again, but this time it was 114 gold each. A moment later it was 147 gold each. Then it started to come back down again until I stopped clicking when it reached 100 gold once more about 30 seconds later.

This weekend proved to me that with more players will come sharp and predictable swings in the prices of commodities. Just think, you could have bought out all the Subtle Essences at 100 gold each and resold them for 140 gold each no problem... assuming that you knew when the change was going to happen. I predict that we will be able to roughly estimate the time of these changes, and with so many players entering into buying/selling wars, be able to also make a profit off the exchange. Perhaps this strategy will enable players to make money even if they do not have a blacksmith or jeweler leveled yet.

We'll never be able to control the current of these commodity prices due to the sheer volume of trades, but we sure as hell can ride the wave and profit from the process.

To stay on top of all the ideas and strategies we are currently working on, join the Diablo 3 Gold Community. On May 1st, the price will go up to $24, so please don't miss out on your chance to start learning and participating a little earlier than the rest.

As an aside, I must say that crafting in Diablo 3 is incredibly addicting. For just a small investment in crafting materials, I could get lucky and create some really expensive items. But if I don't get lucky, I can still make money from the half way decent gear that I create. As I've written before, you don't need luck to get rich in Diablo 3! With so many more people playing the game this weekend, it was pretty easy to keep a steady flow of auctions going.

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