Mists Beta: Where Will AoE Looting Take Us?


If you haven't heard, Area-of-Effect, or AoE Looting has been added in Mists of Pandaria. Check Mommar's post yesterday for his excitement about the feature, along with a video about it.

So what does this mean for the economy and our gold-making going forward? A few areas that will be impacted, plus a surprising twist on where AoE Looting could take us in the future...

Skinning
Unlike Mining and Herbing, which rely on nodes spaced out on a map, Skinning can improve efficiency by gathering several mobs together, killing them, then looting and skinning. AoE Looting gets you to the skinning faster, which means more leather to sell.

Cloth Gathering
Cloth will see a similar boost in supply (and corresponding dip in prices most likely). I used to run the Stockades in Stormwind on my max-level tank regularly to get wool cloth. Now, I can gather up the whole instance, kill everything and loot once. Nice.

Transmogrification Farming
Have you gone back to look for old gear for transmog purposes? I know I have. You can't skip any loot, because that mob might be the one that has what you need. Much like the cloth gathering, you can now pull the instance (all at once or in chunks) and then loot it.

As a bonus, pop a potion of treasure finding if you go looting in the Cataclysm zones once you hit 90.

The AoE Looting Surprise
Of course, this stuff is all well and good, but what's the surprise twist? A while back, a question came up on the main forums about automating the prospecting and looting process for Jewelcrafters and Scribes. There were some limitations that prevented queue-able milling/prospecting (think like a Miner's smelting). I suspect the problem was that prospecting is really just a form of looting on a time-delay. You hit your prospect button, choose which ore to prospect, then wait a couple seconds before looting what you "find" in the ore.

If you think about it, the game is treating 5 pieces of ore or herbs like a mob. You "loot" it to find what's inside. So what if there were an interface similar to the trade window, where you drop in stacks of ore or herbs. The game could query the server for a loot-table on your products, then return it in one batch loot window, similar to how the mobs are being looted with this new feature.

This same system could be applied to items that need to get disenchanted as well. Drop a bunch of items in, hit the "Mass Disenchant" button and take all the materials from one window.

There would probably need to be a longer delay for a mass disenchant/prospect/mill feature to prevent these professions from becoming insanely unprofitable [Note: Thanks to Anonymous1 for catching the mistype] (can you imagine if prospecting 20 stacks of ore took only a few seconds?) but this could be the first step to making a more sensible system for handling these time-consuming processes.

4 comments: on "Mists Beta: Where Will AoE Looting Take Us?"

  1. I always said that engineers should be able to make milling, prospecting and disenchanting machines that were usable by scribes, jewelcrafters and enchanters only.

  2. You mean from becoming insanely UNprofitable...right? As soon as everyone can do it, the gems won't sell for nearly as much.

  3. I really, really, really hope they don't change how milling works.
    I'd like to think it keeps a lot of competition away because people can't be arsed doing that - which means more money for me.

  4. @Evlyxx: Engineers making a consumable device would be a nice twist on this process. It would give them something additional to make and sell on a consistent basis, and it would provide the needed check on the process so the economy isn't flooded with all the materials that come from the disenchant/prospect/mill process.

    @Anonymous1
    The process would become insanely unprofitable if there were no check on the process, yes. A mistype in the article. Thanks for catching it!

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