This post is a part of Cold's Gold Blogging Carnival, hosted by Cold of Cold's Gold Factory.
The World of Warcraft is all abuzz lately with news of the next expansion, Mists of Pandaria. Unless you've been living under a rock, you know that a lot of Annual Pass subscribers already have access to a (rather unfinished) beta. Speculation about the release date is rampant. I won't speculate, because I'm terrible at evaluating the situation objectively; I just want MoP to come out this summer because Dragon Soul is a drag. I'm ready for new content.
Since I'm new to goldmaking, I've never before prepared for an expansion in terms of anticipated profit. I don't necessarily recommend following any of the strategies I'm using, but I'll give a quick rundown of each tactic and my reasoning for it. I'll continue to make posts as we learn more and my strategies change.
Companion (Non-Combat) Pets
Since the announcement of the Pet Battle System, I've been keeping an eye out for somewhat unique BoE pets. Vendor pets don't qualify (unless they state that some of them will go away) since they're easy to acquire and would just take up valuable bank and bag space. It's a fairly popular theory among goldmakers that pets will rise in value as players get involved with pet battles. There are a few things that might affect this value; for example, if Blizzard makes your pets account-wide the market will be smaller. And there's the question of whether we'll be able to sell pre-leveled pets -- frankly, I have no idea what will happen with that. I'm not going to fill an entire guild bank, but I am trying to get one or two tabs' worth. Word on the street is that Cataclysm drop pets like Elementium Geode will be less prevalent once folks aren't grinding in Cataclysm zones anymore. That's code for "buy them now when they're cheap and sell them later when they're not." That's just one example of what I'm looking for in pets.
Leather Transmog Gear
I hate the transmog market; it doesn't seem to do well on my server, and I find it tedious and frustrating. However, I'm collecting another one or two guild bank tabs' worth of leather gear I think monks will find appealing. Jim at Power Word: Gold has a good post on transmog gear that might appeal to monks; I agree with some of his conclusions but am also trying to draw my own based on what I like.
Profession Leveling Mats
Specifically, TBC, Wrath and Cataclysm mats. If you've ever leveled a profession, you know there are chokepoints -- materials you really need but which are in short supply because nobody's farming them anymore. Most of what I'm stockpiling are the Cataclysm mats. For example, I'm keeping a lot of my Hypnotic Dust which is almost always below 1g right now on my server. But the dust from Wrath goes for about 8 times that much, since you need a ton of it to level, and you don't get nearly enough just leveling through the zones. I'm also keeping gems, elementals, etc. This is a long long term investment; I anticipate that at the beginning of MoP, everyone will be unloading their excess Cataclysm mats and the market will be saturated. However, three to six months in, the prices should rise.
Getting Professions Ready
I have three alts at 85 and one at 80, all with maxed professions: JC x2, Alchemy x2, Enchanting, Inscription, Herbalism, and Leatherworking. I'm working on leveling my alts and maxing their professions so they're ready to go when the expansion hits. As far as I know, we don't know yet what the level requirement will be to train max professions, so I'm going to try to just get them all to 85 anyway. My plan once MoP is actually here is to spend a few weeks gathering, since mats should go for high prices initially. I also plan to level my Inscription as soon as possible. The other crafting professions will wait, since their items tend to be more important once players have reached the endgame (flasks, cut gems, crafted gear, belt buckles, enchanting scrolls, and so on).
So those are my strategies as they stand now. What do you think? What are you doing to prepare?