Epic Gems in 4.3: A Critical Analysis

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Well that's one of the 'quite a lot' of other things I take issue with.

I cut and equipped a ton of epic gems in the 'raining from the sky' era of Wrath, and next to none of those were 'produced' myself. I did make fire prisms every now and then but the vast, vast majority of the gems I cut for others and for myself were from emblems and honor.

My JC 'business' was different then because everyone could make their own epic gems out of thin air, and I'm adaptable. But the reason I was pointing out the fact that rare gems are flying off the shelves right now was not to pat myself on the back. It's extremely relevant, because instead of worrying about subverted bargains and vertical monopolies in commodities so scarce as to be non-existent right now, an attentive JC is just doing business in what the market needs, and business is good. Business in rare gems is not going away.

My Wrath buddy who had 4 alchemists was rolling in gold cause he could transmute so many cardinal rubies. A JC with 4 Alchemist alts could do that now if there existed a similar transmute, and make some pretty big piles of gold. But it wouldn't be JC making the gold. Overall though, barking in trade from the Dalaran steps was much less of a profitable business model than now. I control my supply far more than I did in Wrath, when everyone got their gems from points. Even if they came from Pyrite or Alchemy that's still relying on another profession, but that's not my point.
I did 5/8 last night on my DK, and got 4 Zephyrites, 2 Dream Emeralds, and an Amberjewel.
One person in my group got a Queen's Garnet.

Interesting. Was this the standard or LFR difficulty levels? Either way, Blizzard is pushing the scarcity more than I had imagined.

If you think I'm going to be raidraidraidraidraiding to fill those with epics next week, you and I have a very different vision epic gems. I'm not going to put any epics in my current gear, and until my raid puts a good bit of work into heroics, I won't even consider putting any into non-BiS heroic gear.

And that is why I do not anticipate Dark Lotus hitting a World First Deathwing kill. Not that it's a bad thing -- I certainly don't want to compete for that kind of accolade myself -- but grinding on alts for epic gems is the kind of thing that the tip-top 0.1% will think to do.

The scarcity is deliberate, but it's implemented in a way that can be overcome with absurd amounts of grindy effort. For those people for whom it really matters, it's a perverse incentive.

As far as the PvP side of it goes, yeah people playing that game go to great lengths sometimes for the edge, maybe even clearing a raid now and then.

I know you said that you agree with some PvP mechanism for gems later, so I'll keep this point short; if your group wasn't getting consistent drops for epics, then gearing up a PvPer is going to be a great deal more than "clearing a raid now and then." They'll have about as many slots to fill as you do.

Really, there's quite a lot wrong with this thread, but mostly you're jumping to conclusions and overreacting. Just play the game.

I'm hardly going to quit the game over this. And I don't think I'm overreacting. Some of my conclusions won't become apparent for a time, but I fear that most of them are inevitable given the current distribution system. In the meantime, I'll carry on in-game as if epic gems don't exist.

Blizzard could mitigate some or all of these problems with suitable changes. I imagine, even, that they will. But I have no assurance of that, especially since this is the last tier-raid patch for this expansion. Most of the motivation of this thread, in fact, is to encourage Blizzard to take action sooner rather than later.
Leatherworkers can control their end by crafting epics from raw leather. Blacksmiths craft epics from raw ore.

But that is not entirely true - Leatherworkers depend on Skinners and balcksmiths depend on miners. granted many (if not most) players have gatherers to feed their crafters but not always. jewelcrafters also depend on miners.

Getting back on topic, the OP laid out everything perfectly. The problem is that Blizzard is in a no-win situation: in vanilla and TBC epics were hard to get and players complained, so in LK and (to only a slightly lesser extent) cata, they made epics easier to get and another segment of players complained. So they have now made Epics epic again, in the form or scarce epic quality gems and the original segment complains again.

Something else to consider is that at least initially the difference between epic and rare gems is minimal. An epic gem only adds +10 over a rare. Yes, every little bit helps and yes, once someone is "decked out" that difference is magnified, but for most that will not happen for quite some time.

Personally, I am still on the fence over this. As a player who's main is an alchemist I am a little disappointed at the lack of epic gem transmutes. But we did get rare gem transmutes that we never had before. For JCs who believed that pyrium ore was going to yield epic gems, shame on you; in the real world pyrite is nicknamed "fool's gold" and the fact that alchemists transmute that metal into "truegold" you should have known from those simple facts that pyrium was not going to yield epic gems.

On the other hand, with epic gems being as scarce as they are going to be, rare gems will not lose their market value like every other expansion. The JC shuffle will still be a strong money maker.

So I am in a wait and see mode now. that is all we as the playerbase can really do.
I can see why this would be an issue. If I could only get ore for epic blacksmithing items from raid bosses, I'd be a little disappointed as well.
The first epic gems just appeared on AH here. They run in price from 11000 to 30000.
Agree totally with OP, blizz really screwed up the epic gems this time, all I do is pvp, i dont raid at all, guess no gems for me until they make it so you can prospect from ore or something.
11/30/2011 10:46 AMPosted by Ashrubbery
The first epic gems just appeared on AH here. They run in price from 11000 to 30000.

I saw some butthole last night selling one in trade for 7.5k, and he was trying to explain how it was a good deal.

With the different gear upgrades from raiding, I can easily see myself gemming 30+ times, and the vast majority of those are going to be the blue gems. Even when I do start getting the epic gem drops, I'm probably just going to sit on them for fear of getting an upgrade and wasting the gem. Seriously, this is freaking lame.
I can see why this would be an issue. If I could only get ore for epic blacksmithing items from raid bosses, I'd be a little disappointed as well.

But Blacksmiths, Leatherworkers, and Tailors not only have to farm trash for patterns, they have to kill bosses for the "4.3 Chaos Orbs" to make them.

11/30/2011 10:50 AMPosted by Zazam
Agree totally with OP, blizz really screwed up the epic gems this time, all I do is pvp, i dont raid at all, guess no gems for me until they make it so you can prospect from ore or something.

Now that I see how rare epic gems are, and considering how little difference it makes (sneezing will cost you more dps then 10 points from an epic gem), I kind of agree with the decision. Epic gems are epic, not that the people killing DW next week on heroic really need the upgrade.

As for PvP players, why are you complaining? Until S11 starts, you have no clue what is going to happen. For all you know, epic gems will be purchasable with conquest points or you might purchase geodes with honor and have the same chance as downing a raid boss for an epic gem.
i agree they should have them to be bought with honor/justice and a rare chance in pyrite/ele ore
HA! How about $15k a pop?
Agreed! I'm a JC'er who does not raid. I will pretty much never get to sell these gems, or wear them. Please do something about this.

I can understand that epic items should be rare. However, it's not acceptable to pvpers who DO NOT also pve hardcore, will not be able to wear these. Something must be done. The only way this can be fair for pvpers is if you dissallow epic gems for all pvpers. But obviously this is impossible, so your only option is to make it more accessible to all.
someone has a few uncut epic gems for 8.5K on my server. LoL @ him (or instead LoL at the idiot who buys one for that)
5 - 14 k per gem on my server. Not sure if Bliz though how this is gonna effect the Gold Farmers if you really wanna nice new gem go to e-bay ?
This is a very well written and thought out post.

Some of this had already occurred to me already (hence the reason I clicked on the thread). But there was quite a bit that I hadn't thought of. This was obviously not given much thought on their end. But sadly, this seems to be common on a lot of the newer additions and changes to the game. I understand the need to introduce better upgrades and incentive to get those upgrades. But they really need to start thinking these things through better than they are currently.
I saw purples selling in trade for 500g, and everything else has already dropped down from 10000 yesterday to below 3000 today minus the red one which is around 5k. And there is about 5 pages of raws and cuts already.

Blizzard grossly underestimated how long it would take to replace our blue gems with the epic ones. Maybe my prices are dramatically cut because I come froma high pop server, but it really is not going to take as long as they thought it would.
At the very least, Blizzard should implement a way to obtain epic gems through proffesions such as JC and alchemy. A daily 24h cooldown to recieve 1 gem would definantly help reduce the price.
I saw one of the epic gems on the AH for the first time last night. People listed the gem for 40K gold. Now my guild is a laid back casual raiding guild. We raid every week with alot of progression. Thing is we like to have fun doing it. Now, we dont have a ragnaros kill under our belt but we are getting there. Point is that I feel the people that dont have RL or are able to farm these gems are gonna make it impossible for us JC to aquire the gems for ourselves. They should make these gems available to the profession people it is intended for in some other way. Even if saving 5-6 tokens for one is better than not being able to aquire one at all it makes the cuts and profession useless in the high levels.
12/01/2011 03:47 AMPosted by Anestasia
Point is that I feel the people that dont have RL or are able to farm these gems are gonna make it impossible for us JC to aquire the gems for ourselves.

this is like the 3rd time ive seen someone say that.

there is no farming epic gems. people who clear the zone get 1 garenteed epic gem(random color) and 6 small chances to get others(of my 25man raid i saw only a handful of these).

the only way to "farm" them is to run DS in an alt raid which is gonna be an extremely small portion of players. and even that is only going to really be fruitful if your alt raid can kill deathwing.

think about it this way, you are a casual raider. you say you havnt killed rag which means no hard modes. you have no hardmode gear but you get by just fine, epic gems will be no different. the bonus offered by full epic gems is pretty small. i have 11 red gems thats 110 str if i switch to all epics which is roughly 350 dps. and thats at 100% efficiency, less skilled dps will get even less out of it. id probably gain more dps from having a 50 lower ping than epic gems vs rare gems.

as for other complaining about the source of their mats being other professions....well every profession has that as someone pointed out. BS/LWing/tailoring all need essence of w/e which is also a raid drop. JCs now also need a raid drop.
lol 2k...they're 9500 a pop on Uldaman 2 days in.

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