Tuesday, November 27, 2007

World of Warcraft item pricing database

I've been frustrated with the state of online information about the in-game prices of World of Warcraft items for a long time. Sites like wowecon tend to have spotty data and present the data in ways that I find difficult to use.

My solution: wowstreet.ajs.com, my World of Warcraft pricing search engine.

Right now, I monitor three servers: Argent Dawn, Thorium Brotherhood and Dentarg. Because Dentarg is a PvP server, I only monitor the Horde side there, but on Argent Dawn and Thorium Brotherhood, I monitor both the Horde and Alliance auction houses. Right now, there are technical limitations that make scanning with Auctioneer on more than three servers difficult at best, but once I figure those out (possibly just keeping separate configs for each server), I'll be monitoring all servers on a rotation basis.

The really interesting feature, in my opinion, is the way the data is presented. If you look at the image to the left, you'll see a sample graph for Silk Cloth. Notice that there are three lines and many cyan dots. The lines are the 25th, 50th and 75th percentiles for a rolling, one week period. The cyan dots are a scatter-plot of the daily averages. By looking at this, you can quickly get a sense for where the market was. Between the top and bottom line, the middle 50% of all auctions appeared, and the line in the middle is where the middle-of-the-road price for that week was. When you see something like the end of that graph where lines start to converge, what that tells you is that the prices became more narrow, with fewer extremely high or low prices relative to the overall number of auctions. When the opposite happens (the lines move apart), the market for that item has become more volatile with more prices falling farther from the median.

This site is a labor of love, and I'll continue to keep it growing and updating as long as the WoW economy is strong.
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