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    It’s an interesting time in the Diablo 3 community. Not only is the Reaper of Souls expansion coming in less than two weeks, but the Auction House is closing in one week, and Diablo 3 version 2 has been live for a couple of weeks. Any of these factors would create shifts in the economy, and when you throw all three together, weird stuff happens. We’ve seen crazy price swings for materials and gems, value added or subtracted from existing gear (formerly very pricey weapons with life steal are now being almost given away), and more.

    Diamond sales: New, pricey, and fluctuating.

    Diamond sales: New, pricey, and fluctuating.

    Legendary Crafting Plans definitely fall under the “more” category. In DiabloWikiD3v2 they drop much more often than they used to, most of them have been considerably upgraded in quality, and the items they produce are also better thanks to the new higher stat rolls. At the same time, there’s the oddity of the game no longer dropping any crafting plans you have already taught your Blacksmith or Jeweler, which means if train them in a plan, you’ll never find it again. That’s meaningless in RoS since all the plans are BoA anyway, but it’s crucial now with the AH still available, and plans selling for quite a bit of gold.

    The latest swing to the economy came in yesterday’s Patch 2.0.3, which enabled the sale of Diamonds in the Auction House. I was surprised to see this given that the AH is shutting down in a week, and it came right after D3v2 finally added commas to prices, and some bug fixes to stop Mac users crashing in the Auction House. The B.net programmers are like kids near the end of summer vacation; trying to cram in all the activities they put off for months into the last week of freedom!

    Diamonds for sale command a huge price, and click through to read about crazy Diamond prices, plus recent bugs and fixes with a huge impact on Fiery Brimstone prices, the gray market for white items, and more.


    Diamonds

    DiabloWikiDiamonds >are a new thing in Diablo 3, are mostly being used to add Resistance to armor, (don’t sleep on their huge offensive potential when cutting cooldowns in helms) and they are selling for huge prices. I checked softcore and hardcore on US and EU Wednesday afternoon, and flawless square diamonds were going for 70-85k on each realm, with almost no difference in price between Softcore and Hardcore. (Every other type of gem varies widely in price between SC and HC.) Prices had come down a bit by early Thursday morning, but the gems were still commanding 50-75k on the US and EU.


    Fiery Brimstones

    DiabloWikiFiery Brimstones are not a new thing, but they got a big buggy change in D3v2 that momentarily cut their value to almost nothing. The bug basically made them dupable, and it stemmed from the fact that all Legendary crafted items now yield a Fiery Brimstone when you salvage them. That’s fine at the high level since you can make the item, salvage if if you’re unsatified, and then spend that Brimmie again crafting another one. The bug introduced in D3v2 came from some low and mid-level crafts that did not require a Brimstone (or a Demonic Essence) to make, but which still yielded a Brimmie when salvaged.

    This bug was, of course, mercilessly exploited and as a result Fiery Brimstones flooded into the Auction House, enriching some players while immediately depressing prices. Brimmies were selling for under 10k in softcore already, but they dropped down to 5k in Hardcore on US and EU over the weekend. Lucky were the players who stocked up then, since DiabloWikiv2.0.3 fixed the exploit and prices rebounded almost immediately.

  • Level 1-60 crafted Legendary and Set pieces now require 2 Fiery Brimstones to craft.
  • All low level crafted Legendary and Set pieces now require at least 1 Demonic Essence to craft.
  • Brimmies in HC cost 90-110k on Tuesday after the patch, up from 5-10k over the weekend. With that kind of fluctuation in prices, driven mostly by speculators, dupers, and thieves, the should call them Fiery Bitcoins.


    Material Prices

    White items and materials could have been another big change, but they are not salable in the Auction House, even after this week’s patch. (And it seems really unlikely they’ll be enabled in the week before the shutdown.)

    White mats and items can not be sold in the Auction House, and while white items can be traded in-game (just not via the AH), white materials are BoA. Since the new crafting recipes require white materials in large amounts, and these items drop much less often than blue or yellow items, many players have taken to buying and selling white items via trade channels for ridiculously high prices. (50k per white item was the going rate in US HC last week, which works out to more than 10k per unit of material.)

    If you need to farm white items, the best place to get them is from weapon and armor racks, a fact that has altered the farming behavior of many players. Areas like the Act One Halls of Agony and Catacombs much more popular than they were previously, purely because they boast so many Armor/Weapon Racks. There are some areas in Act Five that have a lot of racks also, so prepare yourself for the expansion.

    On that note, crafting is even more white item dependent in Reaper of Souls, since 1) you needed lots of white materials for crafting, and 2) all RoS weapon and armor legendary crafting plans required a white item of that item type as one of the ingredients. So if you wanted to make say, a legendary helm, you needed not only the appropriate amount of gold, plus some white/blue/yellow materials, plus some special legendary material, plus a Forgotten Soul (the higher level Fiery Brimstone), but also a white helm of the correct type.

    The type was important; you couldn’t use a Witch Doctor mask for the regular legendary helm recipe, and the white item had to be normal (not low quality) and it had to be the correct highest tier of the item. Not some white helm you found at level 54, but the level 70 version.

    Beta crafting stymied by non-dropping white quivers

    Beta crafting stymied by non-dropping white quivers

    There were bugs, of course. Right up through the end of the beta it was impossible to find a white off-hand item other than a shield, which made the legendary quivers, mojos, and sources impossible to craft. Presumably that’s something the devs will fix before RoS launches, but I’ve been watching in D3v2 and I have never seen a white item of those types yet.

    At any rate, white item farming is not just a temporary thing in D3v2; most players had to do some of it in the Reaper of Souls beta, and I’ll be surprised if that doesn’t reoccur in the live game. I just hope the white off-hand item drops are fixed, since I still want to make those Archfiend Arrows I had for a month in the beta, but could never try to craft since there were no white quivers available.


    Conclusion

    All of these economic gyrations are interesting to watch and fun to profit from, but as fleeting as the last butterflies of Autumn. Not only is the AH going away next week, but RoS is coming the week after, and with a higher elvel of crafting/savaging materials at 61+, all current materials and gems are going to become entirely irrelevant as soon as RoS arrives (assuming the devs haven’t changed anything radically since the beta.) Not to mention how all the gems and mats are BoA in Reaper.

    In the meantime though, players might as well speculate and prosper, since very soon it’s going to become a lot harder to earn gold, when they only way to accumulate it is to pick it up off the ground or earn it for quest rewards.

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