Blog Archive

Monday, 22 May 2017

Flashpoint: The Expansion is Coming Part 1

Hello guys! A few weeks ago the fifth installment of the Living World season 3, Flashpoint, was released and with it the news that this would be the penultimate episode in the season. This means what you think it does and was also confirmed by lead director Mo himself on reddit, that the next episode will be the last of season 3 and the expansion will followup thereafter! That's fantastic news and perhaps comes as a bit of a surprise to a lot of players. It was also stated that the release schedule for the expansion will follow the same system as the Living World releases(albeit with a slightly longer delay), which means we can perhaps expect the second expansion to launch late November or December this year! This is huge news for speculators in particular, as an expansion opens up plenty of investment opportunities. Over the coming weeks leading up to the release of episode 6, I am going to talk about some of my favoured investments with regards to the upcoming expansion, and today the topic is Gold Ore! I should also take this moment to mention that this will be a spoiler-free post with regards to leaks, but may or may not mention plot points from the current story arc.

The Gold Mine

Excuse the pun, but this one could really be a gold mine! Gold Ore has been very stable in price since the launch of Guild Wars 2 in August 2012. With a low of 13 copper in early 2013 when the value of currency was much higher, and a high of about 1 silver 10 copper(ignoring spikes), Gold Ore currently sits at about 67 copper. The highest spike came right before the ascended armour patch, when players speculated that level 500 Jeweler was a possibility, with the ability to actively craft ascended trinkets. In the end, the Jeweler crafting profession stayed with a max level of 400 and instead we got lots of other ways to obtain ascended trinkets. To this day, Jeweler along with Chef and Scribe still have a 400 level cap, but that doesn't mean it will always be this way.

I believe Jeweler, Chef and Scribe all have very real possibilites of making it to level 500 as part of the expansion, but for today let's discuss Jeweler. First of all, a thing to note: it has been mentioned around, mainly due to leaks, that expansion 2 will likely be a lot more focused on content rather than features. Now with this in mind, a boost to level 500 for Jeweler would definitely come under features, but below I will explain a few reason why I think level 500 Jeweler would also feed into content a bit more too. So what would a level 500 Jeweler offer in the Guild Wars 2 of today? Back before the ascended armour patch it was assumed that the Jeweler would have the opportunity to craft ascended trinkets, it was logical and it would fall in line with the rest of the crafting disciplines. However, it was also known that ascended trinkets were already a thing in the game and had been for a while, from various sources including fractals. The result was that instead of giving Jeweler the same treatment as the armour and weapon crafting disciplines, more ways to obtain ascended trinkets around the game were added to compensate. Even today we have the new Living World season 3 maps, particularly Bitterfrost Frontier, which offer stat-selectable ascended trinkets. In today's game it simply doesn't make sense for a level 500 Jeweler to only offer the ability to craft ascended trinkets - sure it should have the ability, but if that is the only thing it is capable of then nobody will persue it. So what about legendary trinkets? Now we are talking.

An expansion needs to offer 'shiny new rewards'. It just has too, it keeps new players playing the game, it gives players goals to go for. It also gives the expansion another selling point, and a good one at that, especially for players who are less interested in the story. Legendary trinkets are the natural progression, and they are the only thing left in terms of equipment. We have legendary weapons, we have legendary backpieces and now we also have legendary armor, so naturally what's next? It has to be legendary trinkets. There is also some hints we can pick up for legendary trinkets too. Looking at the progression of cosmetic auras in the game we can see that things like the Preserved Queen Bee and the Ghostly Infusion have been added, and many theorized that these were perhaps 'testers', to check visual noise etc. in preperation for the addition of legendary trinkets. We have also had an item called 'Xunlai Electrum Ingot' in the game since the ascended armour patch a long time ago. This item has been sitting in the material storage with no known acquisition, and has even had its description changed from 'refined from copper, silver, and gold' to 'Refined from silver, gold, platinum and mithril'. This likely means that at some point it will be used, and is tied to the Jeweler profession due to its component materials. Also, if it was an intended feature for Heart of Thorns but was cut for any reason, the chances of it making the next expansion is very likely too.

So why Gold and not another metal? There are three main reasons. Firstly, Gold Ore is directly tied to the Jeweler crafting profession and apart from a few Scribe recipes, is used exclusively in the crafting of trinkets by the Jeweler. Secondly, as mentioned above, Gold is noted as a component in the Xunlai Electrum Ingot - it is possible this will change if it does get added, but it is still a very good lead. Lastly, crafting ascended weapons and armour tends to use a lot more tier 2, 3 and 4 materials. With that in mind, Gold is in very low supply according to the trading post - Gold Ore and Gold Ingots combined total about 1.8 million ore, in comparison with Silver for example, totalling 17.8 million. Platinum Ore is also very low in supply and could also be a very sound investment too, but with the price sitting at around 2 silver you would have to invest a lot more to acheive similar quantities.

I should also note that Gold Ore has been speculated on by many players at various points in time such as before the ascended armour patch or before the launch of Heart of Thorns. This may mean that an excess amount of Gold is also sitting dormant on active and inactive accounts. Regardless of this, I believe Gold is one of the best investments going into expansion 2. Stay tuned for more posts on the coming weeks!