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World of Warcraft: A Beginner's Guide


How can I make money without buying gold?
A shaman trains in a level-four skill for the cost of one silver.
A shaman trains in a level-four skill for the cost of one silver.
©2004-2007 Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. All rights reserved. World of Warcraft and Blizzard Entertainment are trademarks or registered trademarks of Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.

During the first few levels of game play, you don't need a lot of money. Your quest rewards take care of your basic needs for food, water and armor. But soon, expenses start to add up -- you have to pay class trainers for new skills and abilities, and you have to buy gear, food, water and other items. When you start trying to save the 100 or so gold pieces you'll need to be able to ride a mount when you get to level 30, it might start to seem impossible to make enough money.

One way to get gold is to use real money to buy it from a gold farmer -- but this is against the game rules, and most players frown upon people who try it. Blizzard may also ban your account if it catches you buying gold. Fortunately, there are lots of legal ways you can make money. You can:

  • Sell crafted or gathered items: All characters can choose to learn two professions and three secondary skills. These skills allow you to gather and make items you can use or sell. If you decide to learn to enchant items -- magically add stats or abilities to them -- you can charge other players to enchant their gear. If you like, you can learn two gathering professions, like herbalism and mining, and sell raw materials instead of crafted items.
  • Sell dropped items: Enemies, or mobs, drop items you can sell. Humanoid mobs also drop cash.
  • Complete quests: Most quests reward you with money or items. When you reach the game's maximum level, you'll receive gold instead of experience when you turn in quests. At high levels, you can also take advantage of daily quests, which you can complete each day for substantial financial rewards. 
A view of the gems available at an auction house
A view of the gems available at an auction house
©2004-2007 Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. All rights reserved. World of Warcraft and Blizzard Entertainment are trademarks or registered trademarks of Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.

Here are some tips for making enough money to buy the items you want in the game:

  • The money you get from selling vendor trash, or poor quality items, adds up. Pick up everything you find so you can sell it later.
  • Invest in large bags and keep things you don't always need in the bank so you won't have to leave items you can sell behind.
  • Research your professions. The economy varies from realm to realm, but alchemy and jewelcrafting tend to be moneymakers. On the other hand, some other professions aren't as profitable. For example, engineers can make lots of fun and interesting items, but they can't typically make much money selling them. Also, keep in mind that you may want to learn to craft items you'll be able to use so you won't have to buy them from other players.
  • Download an addon that tracks auction-house prices, like Auctioneer, and use it to help you determine how much to charge for your items and how much to pay for things you want to buy.
  • Prioritize. Just like in real life, you may have to budget your money if you want to buy something expensive. For example, if you want to buy a 5,000-gold swift flying mount, you'll probably have to spend some time earning money and put off other purchases until later.

Just as some professions are expensive, some in-game hobbies tend to cost more money than they make. One is PvP combat. We'll go over the basics of the game's PvP battles in the next section.


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