Market Manipulation

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Re: Market Manipulation

Post  Foxy Boxy on Thu Sep 04, 2008 1:31 am

How about a guide to the trade channel and how to make meat by trading, I would certainly appriciate one of those.
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Re: Market Manipulation

Post  ShadowWolf on Thu Sep 04, 2008 10:14 am

I don't have much experience with the /trade channel, but I have spent a lot of time with a mall multi since my main (Foxy Boxy) spends most of his time in hardcore. But as far as I can tell, working /trade is basically doing the same thing as the mall without the mall interface. You have 100 homoerotic frat-paddles, what's the difference between putting them in your mall for 500 meat each, or going into /trade and saying "hey I've got 100 homoerotic frat-paddles for 500 each"? Mostly just time and effort. I like the mall because I spend a lot of time in the real world (GASP, I know!) and it's easier to set it and forget it. But if you're a chat junkie, you may prefer /trade. Just be aware of the rules for the channel, whatever they might be.

Because of my familiarity with the mall, I'm going to be speaking of "malling" and using the mall. /trade experts should feel free to chime in with /trade related tips and tricks.

I don't think there's any "get rich quick" type way to making money in the mall. In order to sell something, you have to have something to sell and in order to have something to sell you have to acquire it. There's basically two ways of acquiring mall fodder: farming and speculating.

Farming is identifying items that people are willing to pay a lot of meat for, and then spending adventures to acquire those items, which you then sell in the mall. Speculating is buying up items from other people, either through the mall or /trade or however, and then reselling them in your mall hoping the price will go up; the classic "buy low, sell high" strategy. Both have advantages and disadvantages.

The advantages to farming are: 1) it's essentially free; go to the zone you want and start spending adventures, 2) you gain stats, 3) you'll pick up meat and other items too. The disadvantages are: 1) it's limited; you can only spend N adventures per day, 2) there may be an "input cost" if you need to get +item buffs and gear, 3) you're not guaranteed to get the items you want due to RNG, which monsters appear, whether they drop or not, etc.

The trick to farming is determining if it's worth it to spend turns farming these sale items, or just farming for meat. You need to run the numbers to determine this. For example, lets say with +meat stuff like leprechauns and meatspout staffs and whatnot, you can get 500 meat per turn just farming meat from the Castle. You'd have to average 500 meat per turn farming Item A to make it worthwhile. So if you're averaging 1 Item A per 10 turns spent in the zone, Item A needs to sell for more than 5000 meat in the store to make it worthwhile.

The advantages to speculating are: 1) does not require turns spent, 2) there's no RNG involved. The disadvantages are: 1) that it requires time and effort to identify a "price point" for a given item, what's your "buy low" point and your "sell high" point? 2) it requires you maintain an inventory, which carries with it the risk of something not selling, the bottom dropping out of the market, and you lose money.

Personally, I prefer buying/reselling because it's something I can do after I've spent all my turns for the day doing "other stuff" (Hobopolis, actually farming meat, leveling, whatever you like doing). But it is, as stated, tricky. Let's give an example.

A long time ago, I decided I wanted to stock up on clovers (not to resell, just to have). So I spent a lot of time grinding the Valley of Rotflmao for scrolls to turn into clovers and worthless trinkets. I then sold all the other crap
in my mall. I noticed the price of pr0n legs varied wildly from the store min (104 meat) to as high as 250-300 meat. So after some observation to confirm this price flux, I realized I could buy up pr0n legs when they were at the min price (or close to it) and post them in my store at the "high water mark" to make a profit of 100-150 meat per leg.

However, the danger was that at some point the bottom fell out of the pr0n legs market. They've been at or around min 104 for a loooooong time now and I was stuck with thousands of pr0n legs that weren't selling and took a bit of a loss on. But I still made a ton of meat in the meantime.

The key is to find items that 1) have this level of fluctuation, 2) identifying over time the high and low points for this item, 3) start small, test out your theory with a small amount of the item to protect you from losses from "betting incorrectly", and then 4) go nuts.

In my experience good investments are those that are needed for high-demand recipes or items, and are off the beaten path themselves. A good example, and one that served me well for a while, were bat wings and rat appendices. Both are in high demand for chow mein cooking, and both were farmed in out of the way places (the ratbat burrow, a non-required zone, and the Palindome, in NS11 another unrequired zone) so general ascenders weren't farming them. Once the Palindome became required, the bottom dropped out of the bat wing market so they're now about half of what they used to be. But because these are high-demand items, the prices are going to fluctuate as people buy them up and then others start farming for them.

I've been out of the speculation market for a while now, so I'm not sure what's "good" as far as a speculation item. But a good starting point is finding a highly desirable consumable and determining its key components, and monitoring the price of those components.
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Re: Market Manipulation

Post  ShadowWolf on Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:48 am

Here's an additional helpful resource for market analysis, the Coldfront KoL market watch.

This full list can be sorted by category (e.g. "accessories", "pants", etc.). Also you can search for items by name, including partial matches. For example, searching for "mr. accessory" will also turn up "mr. accessory jr." or searching for "tiny plastic" will turn up all tiny plastics.
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Re: Market Manipulation

Post  linakrade on Sat Sep 06, 2008 1:34 am

A few points about /trade from a competitive trader:

Sellers
1) The /trade channel is for quick sales, not max profit, if you are selling. You aren't likely to get the mall value there on most items unless you find a collector lurking. There's a lull in selling Mr. Store items depending on how old they are: The newer they are the less you have to discount to quick sell them if you need liquid meat. (And, yes, I know liquid meat sounds gross!)

2) Mr. Accessories are the fastest selling Mr. Store-related item, period. Just because you check the price one day and it doesn't seem to change much from the day before don't assume that a pile of Mr. A's isn't moving through the market. As much as it pains me to spill this (since this is one of the main markets I play in), it's hardly ever necessary to sell a Mr. A below 50-100k less than any current mall price, as there are many buyers like myself competing for yours 24 hours a day. Consider that a veteran freebie, donaters.

[Added Sept. 27th] 3) If you receive multiple trade offers for your advertised item(s) and cannot fill them all please, please, PLEASE decline the excess trade offers or announce in /trade that the item(s) are sold so the buyer can self-decline. This is a pet peeve of many a trader, as leaving a useless offer standing just ties up meat that could be being spent elsewhere.

Buyers
1) If you see a deal, grab it fast! There is almost always a seasoned trader who knows exactly what a deal looks like and will snatch it away from you by using quick typing and quick finding skills to their advantage. A lot of offers sent in /trade are to players' stores, meaning everyone has the same amount of reaction time and it comes down to server lag/connection speeds to make the difference. However, many deals come in the form of offering a trade to another player and there's only one advantage here: Add the option to propose a trade offer with a right-click in your account menu just like you add right-click PMs and such. This will get you the jump on buyers who click the player's profile and scroll to the bottom.

2) Study the market and find your own niche. There's a reason some easy-to-find items continue to sell at worthwhile rates despite all the farmers out there: Itemfarming is typically a closely-guarded secret at any given time depending on what's hot right now and what supplies are being consumed by and/or for new content that's been released.
Since you are a buyer in this case, take advantage of farmers who drop their items in at bargain rates and use your turns for something more amusing and productive to your own goals. Until you get a bit of wealth under you I suggest playing both the role of farmer and small-time buyer cooperatively to understand each's role in the economy.

3) Once you get to the point of flipping (buying low/selling high) Mr. Store items regularly, you should be a pro at trading. Don't get too cocky, though: Manipulate these items too much and players will empty their DCs and pile on you faster than you can imagine, leaving you temporarily (or longer) sapped of liquid meat to jump on the next deal you find. Always remember that there are lots of us trading in these markets and at least half have billions to throw around this way, unlike you or me.

Mr. Store Investors
1) Do what we do: Read the KoL forums each month to see how popular the current Mr. Store item is before investing. It takes effort to gather the info you need to make wise investments and reading at least the official thread that Jick starts on day one of each month will get you a lot more info than asking other players in any chat channel. If a complaint thread shoots up during the month about the item in question take time to follow it as it grows. If Jick makes a change to the item, know about it and if it was popular in nature or if it was a nerf taken as an item-killer.

2) My rules-ofs-thumbs: There are no "sure things" and never invest over half your meat in one item. Yes, the current item may be red hot, but everyone else is getting one or two extra as well, I assure you. Your experience may be different, but I see the goal as making my meat total work for me in the now and future. Being broke for a long spurt in time will make you quick sell your investments just to have meat to play around with each day in /trade, defeating the purpose of investing.

I may add to this as I think up more tips, but let that simmer if you took the time to read it all so far and I assure you it will make your trading less painful every day. Smile
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Re: Market Manipulation

Post  Guest on Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:19 pm

Foxy Boxy wrote:

A long time ago, I decided I wanted to stock up on clovers (not to resell, just to have). So I spent a lot of time grinding the Valley of Rotflmao for scrolls to turn into clovers and worthless trinkets. .

*pricks up ears* scrolls can be used to get clovers and trinkets?! Great Smile how is it done?

Thanks, Muffin.

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SPOILER - Clovers in Orc Chasm

Post  Guest on Thu Nov 27, 2008 3:36 pm

Oh yes... trinkets and clovers....
SPOILER!!!!









After the quest is complete, adventure in the Orc Chasm until you have two 334 scrolls, and a 30669 scroll.
Then adventure until you reach a rampaging adding machine.

Use the two 334 scrolls to have the machine make a 668 scroll.
Then use a 39669 scroll and the 668 scroll together to get a 31337 scroll.

Use the 31337 scroll to get clovers/trinkets.

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Re: Market Manipulation

Post  NoodlyAppendage on Sun Aug 29, 2010 12:55 pm

Thread necromancy!

Market manipulation can be a real challenge to get into - unless you're savvy to how it all works, chances are you'll just lose Meat trying. I should know - I'm not very good at it myself. If I'd never tried market manipulation, I'd have had double the meat I have right now.

That said, there is one guy who's really, really good at it - Bank of KoL. Bank of KoL manages to be really good at playing the market by having:

1. a HUGE bankroll,
2. a very strong understanding of KoL's market forces, and
3. the patience necessary to understand that eventually, ANYTHING will sell.

2 and 3 aren't so easy to come by, but the guy running Bank of KoL manages point #1 by offering his services as a meatbank. If you have 5 million or more meat, and don't have any immediate plans for it, you can send it over to #1132748. Your "deposit" gets recorded, and the meat is used for investment in rares that don't move fast, but do eventually move - he makes profits, and shares in them by giving you compound interest on your meat.

The guy's a member of Iocaine Powder, a clan that is known big for their philanthropy (and their PvP, yeah, but also their philanthropy) and has a very strong reputation for being good to his depositors. I've used the Bank a few times during sabbaticals, and have never regretted it.

tl;dr: If you're not patient enough to play the market, you can at least deposit Meat in a savings account with this guy.
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Re: Market Manipulation

Post  Foxy Boxy on Mon Aug 30, 2010 11:20 am

NoodlyAppendage wrote:Thread necromancy!

Good lord. This thread's so old, SW and my names are swapped.

I can vouch for Bank of KoL. I've invested eight figures with him more than a couple times and I've never had a problem. Make sure you understand his terms and conditions, though (they're on his website which is linked to from his character profile). For example, despite his name he's not a bank. You can't just put your card in his ATM and get a pile of meat out at an arbitrary point in time. What I've done is give him X meat and tell him I want it back after Y days and I've always got it back in Y days (KoL days, note this).

EDIT: It occurs to me to point out that I've only invested my personal meat. Clan meat has remained on Bank of LoHo and I've done no investing or speculating.

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