Tag Archives: Companion Pets

Guardian Cub Price Check – First Weekend Price Drop

Time for a first weekend look at Guardian Cub prices.

As was probably to be expected, there were a lot more Guardian Cubs on the market Sunday morning than there were when I did my first check.  The 24 hour delay and the impact of people who only play on the weekend guaranteed that.

And what did more cubs do to the price?  Here is what things looked like at 17:00 UTC.

Eldre’Thalas (PvE Alliance) – 10 Cubs Listed

Bid/Buyout

  • 6,925/7,999
  • 7,000/8,000
  • 7,000/8,500
  • 7,350/8,500
  • 7,800/7,875
  • 7,900/7,900
  • 8,500/8,500
  • 8,500/8,500
  • 8,000/10,000
  • 12,250/15,000

Eldre’Thalas (PvE Horde) – 8 Cubs Listed

Bid/Buyout

  • 5,250/6,850
  • 7,000/7,000
  • 7,000/7,000
  • 7,500/8,900
  • 7,500/9,250
  • 7,672/9,262
  • 8,700/8,700
  • 9,000/9,100

Hyjal (PvE Alliance) – 11 Cubs Listed

Bid/Buyout

  • 7,400/7,999
  • 7.975/7,975
  • 8,000/9,000
  • 8,546/8,996
  • 8,960/8,997
  • 9,000/10,236
  • 9,450/10,236
  • 9,500/10,000
  • 9,974/10,499
  • 9,974/10,499
  • 9,974/10,499

Lightninghoof (PvP Horde) – 15 Cubs Listed

Bid/Buyout

  • 8,296/9,217
  • 8,379/9,310
  • 8,464/9,405
  • 8,500/9,500
  • 8,644/9,099
  • 8,644/9,099
  • 8,731/9,702
  • 8,820/9,800
  • 9,000/9,150
  • 9,099/9,099
  • 9,349/9,899
  • 9,450/9,999
  • 13,100/13,200
  • 13,100/13,200

Thrall (PvE Alliance) – 8 Cubs Listed

Bid/Buyout

  • 7,122/9,472
  • 7,124/9,475
  • 8,000/9,500
  • 8,939/10,000
  • 9,168/9,651
  • 9,471/9,471
  • 15,080/15,080
  • 17,500/20,000

More cubs pushed the price down significantly.  At my first check, you had to shell out about 20,000 gold if you wanted a cub.  Now the price is well below 10,000 gold in most markets.  And in very small markets, like the Horde side of Eldre’Thalas, the low end of the price spectrum is coming close to what I believe will be the effective floor price for sellers, 5,000 gold.

Over at WoW Insider they have started to look at the price of Guardian Cubs.  They have pointed to Auction House Spy, which has set up a special page dedicated to tracking Guardian Cub pricing.  Hey, there was a cub for 3,000 gold on the Thaurissan server.  So I might be wrong on my estimated floor price, though at 3,000 gold that makes legitimate Cub gold twice as expensive as illicit gold seller gold.

They also mention The Undermine Journal, another price tracking site, for people who want data on Guardian Cub prices.  I think the front page of that site is worth a look just because it visually demonstrates the number of different economies that exist in the WoW universe.  And those are just the North American servers.

Since those tools are available, I won’t be tracking Guardian Cub prices on any sort of regular basis, though I am sure I will come back every so often to see just were prices have gone.

Guardian Cub Price Check – Day One

The first Guardian Cubs are now showing up in auction houses around Azeroth.

Here are the prices I saw this evening on the servers to which I have easy access.

Eldre’Thalas (PvE Alliance) – 3 Cubs Listed

Bid/Buyout

  • 20,000/25,000
  • 20,000/25,000
  • 21,249/24,999

Eldre’Thalas (PvE Horde) – 1 Cub Listed

Bid/Buyout

  • 18,000/28,000

Hyjal (PvE Alliance) – 4 Cubs Listed

Bid/Buyout

  • 14,249/14,999
  • 14,250/15,000
  • 18,999/19,999
  • 140,000/140,000

Lightninghoof (PvP Horde) – No Cubs Listed

Thrall (PvE Alliance) – No Cubs Listed

20-25,000 seems to the middle ground for the few auctions I have seen, with the low bid price being 14,249 gold, while the high end stands at 140,000 gold.

Of course, I have no idea if there were lower priced ones listed that sold already.  That is just my snapshot as of 00:30 UTC.

A quick price check at a likely gold selling site showed me $10, the price of a guardian cub, was currently buying 7,000 units of illicit WoW gold.  That might lead one the believe that, perhaps, an asking price of 140,000 gold for a $10 Guardian Cub might not be a sustainable price.  Misplaced logic might lead you to conclude that legal gold ought to command a premium over illicit gold, so the price might be more reasonable at, say, 5,000 gold per cub.  We shall see.

What sort of prices are you seeing on other servers?

Guardian Cub Now Available – Let The RMT Apocalypse Begin!

The guardian cub is now available at the Blizzard Store.

Golden Companion Pet

Will it become a PLEX-like destroyer of illicit gold sales?

Will it be a quick, flash in the pan, making gold for some before losing its value?

Will this become the Pet Battles pet to have?

It looks like we will have to wait a bit to see.  From the pet description:

During the purchase process, you’ll select a single World of Warcraft character on a single World of Warcraft license to receive the Guardian Cub. Please note that the World of Warcraft license must be in the North America game region.

Once you complete your payment, the pet should arrive in your selected character’s in-game mailbox in approximately fifteen minutes (in normal conditions; please allow up to three hours for delivery). The pet will initially be bound to your character, but it will automatically become unbound and transferable to other characters (by mail or trade) after 24 hours. Redeeming the pet (by right-clicking it) will consume the item.

So on the Alliance side of the Eldres-Thalas server there are NONE for sale yet.

Come on Blizzard, I want to see the walls come tumbling down!

Tune in tomorrow I guess, as I try to get a price check on guardian cubs.

Blizzard Endorses the Transfer of Capital to the Proletariat

Blizzard announced yesterday that their newest and cutest companion pet will not be bound to your account when you buy it from the Blizzard Store for $10.

This means you can turn around and sell it at the auction house for GOLD!!!

I can make you rich! Maybe...

Ostensibly, the reason for this is that Blizzard wants to allow people without the real world fiscal means (or the stubbornness to refuse to play the cash shop game) to be able to purchase the pet in-game… and to stop people scamming with bogus pet codes.

Since the introduction of the Pet Store, many players have been asking for ways to get the companions we offer there without having to spend real-world cash. By making the Guardian Cub tradable (much like the BoE mounts from the World of Warcraft Trading Card Game), players interested in the new pet will have fun, alternative in-game ways to get one. In addition to trading the pet, players can give the Guardian Cub as a gift to another character for a special occasion; guild leaders can use them to reward members for a job well done; and so on. We also hope this change will help reduce the number of incidents of scamming via trading for invalid pet codes.

Of course, for some in the community, this was a huge, “AHA, GOTCHA!” moment!  The RMT alarms have been sounded!

Unfortunately, if this is Blizzard breaking down the doors and letting RMT run rampant, they aren’t doing a very good job of it.

In the continuum of cash shop MMOs, with LOTRO at one end, where Turbine (last I checked) doesn’t let you buy anything that can be resold on the auction house, and Rune of Magic where, the last time I played, you could simply list RMT currency for sale at the auction house for people to buy with the in-game only currency, this is a lot closer to the LOTRO end of the spectrum.

The first blush comparison is with PLEX, CCP’s own cash shop item that is the root of many a quickly realized stellar fortune.  Both can be purchased for cash, both can be sold in the marketplace for in-game currency.

However, PLEX is a consumable.  The market for PLEX is insatiable it seems, and the market price has slowly risen since it was introduced about two years back.

Companion pets, on the other hand, are… well… forever.  You buy one and there it is, you have one.  Blizzard has made the guardian cub a per character pet, as opposed to previous pets, which were per account, which meant once you bought one ALL of your characters, including any made going forward, had one.  This might increase demand some.  There will always be somebody rich in gold who will want one on every character.

But Blizzard has made the cub less attractive for people to buy outright for themselves… which pet would you spend $10 on, the one all of your characters get, or the one that only a single character gets… so I would guess that most people who are going to buy a cub are going to do so with the intent of reselling it, thus increasing the supply in the market.

It almost makes me wish I was still subscribed to WoW, just so I could go in and watch the behavior of this new guardian cub economy. (Somebody please do this?  Gevlon?  Anybody?  I want a “Cub Watch” economic report.)

As a method to reduce fraud and to allow people access to companion pets via in-game currency, this seems like a reasonable, if unambitious plan.

As a sword in the heart of gold sellers, this will probably be a non-event.  The in-game economy is too small on most servers to absorb many guardian cubs, especially on the downtrodden half of some servers, like the Horde side of Eldre’Thalas.

Frankly, EverQuest II Extended has a more open path to go from cash shop to in-game currency, and barely anybody screams about that.  You can buy rare crafting materials for Station Cash and turn around and sell them on the market if you need some platinum quickly.  Common thread – consumable.

When Blizzard is really serious about putting gold sellers out of business, they will follow CCP’s lead and put sellable game time in the in-game economy.  That will close the loop and cut the gold sellers out.

Addendum: Blizzard, surprised as usual that anybody is upset about something they did, had this to say when accused of endorsing RMT with the new guardian cub:

TCG Loot card mounts like the Spectral Tiger have been BoE for a long time now (since patch 3.2), and that was and continues to be well-received, and as far as we’ve been able to tell hasn’t had any adverse impact to the game or economy – despite them selling for sometimes astronomical amounts of gold.

It’s potentially worth noting that no new gold is being introduced into the game’s economy with those mounts or the new Guardian Cub pet.

Our goal with the Guardian Cub is to provide alternative ways for players who don’t want to spend real money to add these pets to their collection. Even though this has been available a while now with the TCG mounts, this is obviously a new kind of way to deliver Pet Store pets, and we’re definitely interested to hear your feedback and ultimately see how this will play out.

Which is pretty much what they said in their original message.  So they either think you cannot read (a pretty safe bet in quite a few cases) or they are demonstrating how to stay on message.

Why Yes, I am a Pilgrim

We’re on an Azeroth holiday roll.  Members of our regular group, including myself, have managed to complete the tasks for the meta achievement for the last few holidays.  Brewfest, Hallow’s End, and Pilgrim’s Bounty have now fallen to us.

However I was not sure that Pilgrim’s Bounty was going to fly.

Most of the achievements were pretty easy.  There was the usual round of gimmes for simple tasks.  Those didn’t bother me.

Nor did the Sethekk Halls run for Terokkar Turkey Time give me much to worry about.  I knew we could take down Talong King Ikiss as a group while wearing pilgrim’s hats and clothes.  Heck, on my scouting mission I managed to kill him solo.

Even the potentially annoying Turkey Lurkey achievement, which required you to go blast a rogue of each race with a 1 shot turkey shooter wasn’t all that daunting.  It would be more of a test of patience hanging around Dalaran waiting for the right rogue to show up.

No, it was The Turkinator that almost brought me low.

Running around and killing 40 level 1 wild turkeys turned out to be more difficult that it sounds.  That 30 second time limit to find the next turkey was a curse, as I would be on a streak, closing in on 30, and I would suddenly run into somebody else doing the same thing.  Or, being clever, I would run around the edges of Elwynn Forest only to run into a dry patch of no turkeys and have to start the count all over again.

Did you know that turkeys and murlocs apparently to not mix?  It’s true.

Finally, Potshot found a prime spot for turkey hunting and got the achievement.  On his advice I ran of to hunt in Trisfal Glades in the area between Scarlest Monastery and The Bulwark.  On my third try, I managed, at last, to get to 40 turkeys.

Turkinator! A Turkey Triumph!

By that point, the only thing I needed for the meta achievement was an orc rogue.  Potshot was kind enough to spare my patience and roll one up to play target for myself and others. (I later spread the joy myself by getting out my dwarf rogue for achievement target practice.)

The Aptly Named Orc Rogue

One shot and the achievement was mine.


That got me the title “Pilgrim” and the plump turkey pet in the mail.


But I was not done yet.

The plump turkey turned out to be my 49th companion pet.  One more and I would get another achievement.

I quickly consulted the big list of WoW companion pets to see if there wasn’t one left I could get quickly.

After some time, I realized that Vikund had not gotten the Ancona Chicken, a purchasable pet out a the Mirage Raceway.

Off I flew to buy a chicken.

And with that chicken came the achievement.


That achievement comes with a reward.  And what would any companion pet collector want?

Another pet!  So now I have 51 pets, including Stinky the Skunk.

A man and his skunk

Only 24 more pets to get the final pet collecting achievement.

I am not, however, going to buy those two pets from Blizzard.  No, I won’t!  Stop looking at me like that!

Anyway, this furthered my modest goal to get least one third of the achievements in WoW.  Not quite “Little Gray” level of effort, but I have that whole day job thing going on.

Next up, the Feast of Winter Veil.

And We Were Upset About a $10 Horse…

Where is Darren when we need him?

Surely this will bring him back for another post!

Yes, Blizzard has turned that corner at last and is now selling in-game items for real life money.  No more buying trading cards… well, actually, you’ll probably still have to do that if you want every possible item… the cash store is open, show us the money!

BlizzPet

For Sale - $10 Each

For myself, I am going to again restate my indifference to buying items in game.  It is a PvE game, so my fun is generally detached from your fun regardless of how many trinkets you buy.  You want the $10 pet?   Knock yourself out.

Will I buy these pets?  I am going to say no.  $10 seems like a lot of cash for either of these guys, the panda’s contribution to charity fig leaf not withstanding.  Get back to me when there is a special mount for sale.

However, this evening my daughter will get to log into WoW and she is going to see that Panda on the splash screen and she is going to want it.

At that point I will have to start on another futile discussion about money and how it is not infinitely generated from the plastic cards in my wallet.  Then she will want to spend her own money on it (her saved up birthday, holiday, and tooth fairy money adds up to the low three figures, so she has declared herself “rich”) and I will feel compelled to nip that in the bud.

My big hope is that she’ll just zip through the splash screen the way she zips through quest text and miss it completely.

But at some point she is going to see it or see a panda in game and the question will come up.  Pandas have that effect on a sub-set of females in my experience.

In fact, you should have seen Ula’s reaction when I mentioned a panda on guild chat last night.  Sorry about that Skronk.