Playing Diablo 3 Without the Auction House

  • #1
    I wanted to hear about people's experience with playing Diablo while not using the auction house.
    This is my preferred playstyle, and I do not want this thread to become a AH v. No AH discussion. I just enjoy the speed of the progression and the game's loot system a lot more this way. People should play the game however they find it most enjoyable, whether that is using the gold AH, RMAH, not using the AH at all, or RPing a sordid love affair with Covetous Shen.

    My experience:
    1) I play solo about half the time, the other half I play with 1 or 2 friends/family members. We trade drops amongst ourselves. I play barbarian. The other two people I play with mostly play Demon Hunter and Wizard. All three of us do not use the Auction House, at all.
    2) The most enjoyable part of playing "no-AH" Diablo is the extra feeling of excitement you get unwrapping a ilvl 62/63 rare drop, or even seeing one drop. I don't buy anything on the AH, so there is no "just 2 more million and I can upgrade my helm" type stuff. The drops are it, and the suspense of identifying a high ilvl drop is higher because this method of gearing is the only one that is available. There is no AH to fall back on.
    3) The second-most enjoyable part is the speed of gear progression. None of us have ever seen a weapon with more than 850 dps, and those have had really crappy affixes so none of us are actually using a weapon with higher than about 750 dps. I am using a 680 dps weapon because there just hasn't been anything better. My shield is ilvl 61 because it has some pretty great stats and good block %. The idea of getting an ilvl 63 shield with decent stats and good block % makes me giddy with excitement! That will really increase my survivability. I have no % reduction against melee or elites because it just hasn't really dropped for me. Looking forward to getting these types of items randomly is what makes me log on everyday. The idea of farming until I can buy such an item is not quite as fun to me, personally.
    4) The least enjoyable part of playing "no-AH" diablo is that there is no real place to spend your money. The Blacksmith was pretty poorly implemented, as there are no ilvl 63 items to attain. Also, the cost of crafting his gear is pretty prohibitive, considering its ilvl is not amazing. Further, the recipe drops have been pretty bad for us, so the only jewel we have above the stuff the Jeweler comes with is the perfect star amythest. That is great for me as a barb, but the Wizard and DH could certainly use an emerald or topaz pattern. However, looking forward to one of these dropping is also fun.
    5) Another negative to this sort of gameplay is the idea that I may never see certain pieces of gear. My barbarian might never get a String of Ears or a Helm of Command or a Stormshield. In some ways, this really sucks, but that is the nature of the RNG of Diablo. I can imagine once the legendary gear changes are made in 1.04 (or whenever) and they become significantly better than regular drops or have really cool procs/set bonuses, I will really be itching to just nab something on the AH. I hope I can resist the temptation! And who knows, maybe I'll get one of these to drop one day :)
    6) A relatively minor point for me, but I also enjoy playing "no-AH" Diablo as a tiny form of protest against the RMAH specifically, and to a lesser extent, the AH. I know this is a contentious topic, but I am trying to be thorough in explaining why I like playing this way.


    So how is your "no-AH" Diablo gaming going? Any questions about this style of playing?
  • #2
    Ever heard of the Ironman Challenge? Try that.
  • #3
    there should be a option when you start create a new character to not have access to AH, but access to game lobbies with custom names ;)
  • #4
    Quote from Sylkvass

    there should be a option when you start create a new character to not have access to AH, but access to game lobbies with custom names ;)


    I would have chosen such an option in a heartbeat. I think Blizzard was extremely bullish with trying to ensure that the RMAH made a decent chunk of money in the first few months of this game being out. This included making sure every player had access to it and that drop rates were low enough for the first few weeks or months so that prices remained high. This is an understandable fiscal strategy, though it obviously rubbed plenty of gamers the wrong way.
  • #5
    I've been playing AH-free on my DH since launch. Well I sell but I don't buy (dunno if you consider that non-kosher :P). I'm only up to Inferno Act I, mostly due to playing other games and having to work late. It's not nearly as bad as people make out, I haven't had any real problems and my luck with drops have been nothing to brag about. Of course that will change when I get to Act II. I'm looking forward to having to work hard to gear up for that.

    I'm playing mostly solo, I play with friends occasionally but because I don't play very much they quickly got ahead of me lol.

    I wonder if anyone has done a "world first" Inferno clear with no AH purchases, trades with friends or gear donations from sponsors. I know I wouldn't be in the running, I don't play the game nearly enough for that :P
  • #6
    Quote from danpaladin

    Quote from Sylkvass

    there should be a option when you start create a new character to not have access to AH, but access to game lobbies with custom names ;)


    I would have chosen such an option in a heartbeat. I think Blizzard was extremely bullish with trying to ensure that the RMAH made a decent chunk of money in the first few months of this game being out. This included making sure every player had access to it and that drop rates were low enough for the first few weeks or months so that prices remained high. This is an understandable fiscal strategy, though it obviously rubbed plenty of gamers the wrong way.


    You understand that putting more items on the market would've given Blizzard MORE money, right?

    They get 1 dollar PER TRANSACTION. More people are able to afford $4 items than $250 items.
  • #7
    I've always supported both forms of the AH, and still do to this day. A lot of people have this conception that just because it's there, it automatically changes the game. I find that it is a personal question of moderation; I have no fret with people asking for millions of gold and dollars for gear, simply because that is their business. I also don't have anything against people purchasing items for both currencies because that is just the way the game works. Anyone who believes there was no money involved in D2 is simply naive, and very little has changed between the two games except for the player's perception on what they "deserve" and how color should immediately mean gozu or trash.

    I personally don't use the AH. I find that it changes the pacing too much, and it is no wonder that people are complaining about the endgame being too shallow when they buy too much gear of high quality. Of course it'll take a lot longer to actually find an upgrade ingame if you're constantly buying the best stuff you can afford. As a side effect, it also devalues gear that is dropped ingame, since it is that much more unlikely to actually be useful.
    Of all things important in Online Gaming, there is one thing no game developer can "fix" - it's community.
  • #8
    I have debated doing this and actually taking data on when I get upgrades/sidegrades as I progress. I then realized how awful that sounded and decided I'll wait until someone else does it. Mainly to see how quickly the upgrades drop off and around what point. I shudder to think about playing Hell in the early 50s and seeing low 40 iLvls dropping.

    Having already used the AH, to go without it would be an exercise in self-restraint. Somehow I believe that the longer I would go without using the AH, the faster I would become bored with the game.

    The first 2 weeks of the game after about midway through nightmare I started using the AH for items bc I was falling behind far too much. I also was playing WD...
  • #9
    On a sorta OT, I kinda like the challenges people are coming up with to beat the content of the game. Sure I use the AH, but it's neat that people do things like not using the AH at all, or have a limited budget.

    I think my personal challenges to not use the AH will be in hardcore mode and hope for the best!
  • #10
    Sounds like a fun challenge.

    I just wanna say (and this thread exemplifies it) - you can choose which features you want to use, and which you don't. You don't have to use the AH, or the RMAH. Just play how you enjoy it.

    In regards to the RMAH - Blizzards cut isn't what you expect it to be. They have to pay fees and taxes and such out of that for you to have it (and to protect it), as well as for them to get anything out of it at all.
  • #11
    Before I started playing the game I wasn't sure if I would enjoy the AH and if RMAH would "destroy the game". After playing for a long time and using the AH every time I am in the menus, I would never want to play without it. I am excited about every "good" drop, regardless of my class. I can plan my gear however I want and swap around items if I decide for a different build. I have to know the gearing tendencies of all the classes to price things correctly, I can buy and sell items according to the incoming changes in the mechanics of the game. And so on and so forth...
    I believe that even though playing without the AH is more difficult in terms of progression, using the AH adds quite a few layers of challenge and planning, making the game way more dynamic.
  • #12
    Quote from Zubacz

    I believe that even though playing without the AH is more difficult in terms of progression, using the AH adds quite a few layers of challenge and planning, making the game way more dynamic.


    That is a great point, and I am glad you found an additional layer of challenge for yourself in Diablo. Personally, that particular layer of challenge is not something I look for in Diablo, which is why I chose to play the no-AH route. I do love playing the AH in games with more fleshed out economies. In Diablo its just gold -> gear, while in many games there is that integral "mats" step that I feel is missing here for me to have fun playing the AH. I do (did) love scouring the AH in WoW, looking for that great deal though :D

    Quote from Tyraen

    Sounds like a fun challenge.

    I just wanna say (and this thread exemplifies it) - you can choose which features you want to use, and which you don't. You don't have to use the AH, or the RMAH. Just play how you enjoy it.



    Couldn't agree more. Cheers mate.

    Quote from Doez


    I think my personal challenges to not use the AH will be in hardcore mode and hope for the best!


    I am scared shitless of playing Hardcore. Can you imagine losing a level 60 character? Or better yet, losing it to lag or a d/c? I think I would literally jump out a window.

    Quote from Ferret

    I personally don't use the AH. I find that it changes the pacing too much, and it is no wonder that people are complaining about the endgame being too shallow when they buy too much gear of high quality. Of course it'll take a lot longer to actually find an upgrade ingame if you're constantly buying the best stuff you can afford. As a side effect, it also devalues gear that is dropped ingame, since it is that much more unlikely to actually be useful.


    This is exactly my mindset. I feel like the pacing without the AH is much closer to what Diablo is supposed to be. I am in Act 2 of inferno, and getting through it pretty well, but I also "artificially" stopped myself from leaving Act I until I got my resists to like 700+, health to 40k, etc. which obviously takes a lot longer to do without the AH.
  • #13
    I have never considered using the AH, real money or game money. I think of the AH as 'cheat codes'. Here's a game, it's difficult to progress, but here are cheat codes to make it easier. The whole POINT of me playing a game is for the thrill of achieving something difficult, by my own means. Some old arcade games were ridiculously unfair and challenging, but the sense of achievement when you beat a level is why I play games. Just because the developers GIVE me the option to use cheat codes, doesn't mean I will. In that sense I am an excessively-moral, old-fashioned hardcore gamer.

    Quote from danpaladin


    I am scared shitless of playing Hardcore. Can you imagine losing a level 60 character? Or better yet, losing it to lag or a d/c? I think I would literally jump out a window.



    I lost a level 31 dh due to lag (my router's fault). Currently playing act 4 nightmare hardcore with another dh (and of course no auction house :)). Loving the challenge.
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  • #14
    I currently have a barb on Act 2 Hell (dont have much time to play) and from the beginning i decided i would not buy items on either AH. Well the other day i was playing somewhere on Act II (forget where exactly) and i hit a wall. I must have died 15 times in 15 minutes on 2 separate elite and champion packs. I was so frustrated i quit and went onto the AH and bought 200k worth of gear which made my barb breeze through.

    After playing for about 30 mins with my new gear i discovered i was bored and felt like i had cheated. It just did not feel right. So i went back to the AH and put all the gear i had bought back up for sale and re-equipped my barb with my old self earned gear. Funnily enough i v been progressing OK since then, just taking my time and thinking more.

    Moral of my story: I personally feel that by buying gear off the AH i feel like i have cheated and all the fun is lost
  • #15
    However you play the game that makes it the most fun, then do it, every1 is different. Just know this though, sometmies going through inferno, there are near impossible elite/chamption packs that you'll have to skip, as of now its part of the game. So don't think just because you couldn't kill that pack that you need to use the AH and if you do come across something hard like that constantly, just go back to farming for a bit till you think you're strong enough this time.
  • #16
    Quote from danpaladin
    or RPing a sordid love affair with Covetous Shen.
    How did you know this is what I do?
  • #17
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I have a feeling that most people who are enjoying no AH game have not progressed really far into the inferno.

    I'm saying this mostly because I've obtained a lot of my gear from the AH (I still manage to use some that I've found myself), racked up about 300 hours of gameplay on my barb, and I already feel like I'm hitting a brick wall. I've been progressing fine with a sword and board spec and gear (I beated diablo with it), but I'm still not gear enough to go 2h on act3 consistently yet. However, I already feel like I'm at the point where real upgrades for me is becoming extremely difficult to find. Searching for direct upgrade yields only 1-2 pages of gears that EVERYONE ON THE SERVER HAS BEEN COLLECTING.

    I never feel like AH is considered "cheating" or anything. It's just an option for me to find good gear that I find but cannot really use, and turn them into a gear that is good for me. The other way I think about this is, I could either spend 100 hours of gameplay to find that one upgrade I want while vendoring everything else, or turn the past 10 hours of effort finding other decently gear into a single good one.

    Having AH also gives me option to experience many other playstyles. The minimum stat required differs between each playstyle and unless there's a way to quickly replaced your gears, it's just going to take that much longer being stuck with the most optimal build to make up for not finding enough upgrades.

    Personally, I've already felt like poking my eyes out when I have to spend 30 hours grinding enough money to buy the next upgrade. I can't imagine being stuck with the same gear for 100 hours before I can get some decent upgrade and able to progress to further act.
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