Why The Auction House Ruined The Game For Me

  • #1
    To start, I'm fully aware of the fact that this topic has been discussed several times. I have hope that I won't get several replies stating the obvious and how I need to go QQ back to Diablo 2, but there is the chance that someone might entirely decide to reply to me based solely off the thread title itself. To everyone who decided to read first, I thank you. With that out of the way, let's continue.

    The whole concept of the auction house was something that I had thought of negatively from the very beginning ever since it was first revealed to us before the game had launched. I suppose it was just hard to grasp at the time. Admitably, I am the sort of person who doesn't respond well to change when it comes to video games. Nostalgia is a prick, and it's a prick that gets under my skin in a very particular way. I had my hopes though after much un-necessary rant post about it.

    Regardless, I bought the game, played it to the end, beat inferno, searched every crevice, and pretty much came to the same conclusion; I don't like the auction house one bit. Neither the gold or the real money one to be exact. In all honesty, I used it to, but I didn't use it because I liked, I used it because I wanted to find a reason not to hate it, but it didn't really work out that way.

    Here is a list of mostly arbitrary reasons as to why I don't like the AH:

    1. It's A Loot Based Dungeon Crawler

    For a game that is designed around the concept of grinding for reward, I don't understand the reason for the AH. Sure, it gives you access to great things at the cost of either gold or hard earned cash, but to what reason? All gear in the game is designed for one reason; to kill things more effectively in some way. However, the very reason you choose to kill those things past completely the game and revealing it's story is to gain experience and obtain better gear. Once you are at the max level, the only reason you have left for killing is paragon levels and more loot, but mostly the loot. With a game that had and still has no PvP (soon to be released), buying anything in the auction house simply contradicts the very reason you choose to play, for the reward. When I bought something in the AH, I never found a single item that could compare when killing monsters (sometimes I did, but on very rare occasions). The only items that ever did compare were just other AH items. It eventually got the point where my grinding reward was gold for the AH.

    2. It's Boring

    This is a little bit of a side note really, but I actually like the idea of trading in person. Going out to other players in game and shopping for your items through trade was a nice experience and also gave the opportunity to pay for your gear through means other than gold. Now, I know I said that I disliked the AH for the very reason of buying gear, but trading is different. It takes more work, and it's harder to find what you're looking for. I believe in small quantities, getting your gear through means other than grinding is okay and a legitament part of the original Diablo experience. It brought the community together in an interesting kind of way. You actually got to chat with the guy you're trading with, and was able to work out deals and even make friends. That being said, the AH is really boring because it doesn't offer any of this. It's nothing but what seems to be a anti-social waiting game of selling your items or looking through a list of everything that has every been placed. No negotiations, no chatting, gold/USD trading only, and having instant access to any item (as long as you got the coin) turned the AH into a boring concept for me.

    3. It Helps You Win Faster and Easier

    This is obvious. Those who buy good gear from the AH will clearly have an easier time. That is just the thing though, you're first go to in the game if it was getting to hard was the AH, not continuing to grind. It seemed as if the AH was the key to fixing all of your problems. Not enough attack? New weapon (dirt cheap ones that are always better than yours are everywhere), dying to easily? Better armor is always at your fingertips. What was once a game that required building and careful planning to go forward has seemed to become a game where the door before you is locked and the key is gold. Gold + AH = Opened Path. It felt as if you bought your way through the game in some aspects. Now, we all know that we occasionally bought items from vendors in D2, but that was usually only at the beginning of acts. Speaking of vendors....

    4. Vendors Are Useless Because of It

    Since you can buy anything from the AH, in game stores are only good for potions/dyes and selling and nothing much else. Their inventory has been greatly reduced to a laughable state, and I think I visited one only a few times for dyes and that was it.

    So, there's my list. It's a topic that has been worn out, I'm sure, but a topic I felt like discussing nonetheless. Diablo 3 really isn't my kind of game, and nostalgia will always beckon to me when I come across new games of old series. It's a good game, yea, but I guess I'm just not into the newer things these days. Now, I do know that the AH was also designed with the third party vendors in mind. If you can't beat them, join them right? Well.. I mean, I guess, but that seems more like a bow of defeat to me than anything. Sure, it worked, but it still ruined the game for me in a way.
    Jellyfish are the one and only true Wizards
  • #2
    Inb4 someone says "THEN DON'T USE THE AH."

    I don't hate the AH. I can see why it's the "easy way out" or it hurts the grind of the game, which is the whole point—grinding for loot.

    However, I do appreciate the AH being there because it's a safe medium for trade so you don't have to deal with potential scammers and 12-year-old babies who can't figure out how much their item is worth. In addition, being able to sell things there (let's just say you don't want to buy things) is such a great way to build up revenue because, face it, even if you trade player-to-player, they're going to want gold at some point or another.

    ...And not to bash, but this just comes down to D2 vs. D3, which has been wholesomely beaten to death; this is not really simply "I hate AH."

    Quote from Ghost_Sanguis
    Diablo 3 really isn't my kind of game


    Just stick to talking about the AH. D3 isn't all about the AH. The AH is one property of it, and no one is forcing you to like it, use it, whatever. Once you start saying "D3 isn't my kind of game," I'm just going to start thinking you're biased to begin with, which essentially will lead you to criticize every single aspect of the game that doesn't float your boat.

    Well, you did say you didn't like the AH before D3 even came out, so technically you were already biased by the time the game was released.
    Blizzard Entertainment - Diablo III Community MVP
  • #3
    Quote from Jaetch

    Inb4 someone says "THEN DON'T USE THE AH."

    I don't hate the AH. I can see why it's the "easy way out" or it hurts the grind of the game, which is the whole point—grinding for loot.

    However, I do appreciate the AH being there because it's a safe medium for trade so you don't have to deal with potential scammers and 12-year-old babies who can't figure out how much their item is worth. In addition, being able to sell things there (let's just say you don't want to buy things) is such a great way to build up revenue because, face it, even if you trade player-to-player, they're going to want gold at some point or another.

    ...And not to bash, but this just comes down to D2 vs. D3, which has been wholesomely beaten to death; this is not really simply "I hate AH."

    Quote from Ghost_Sanguis
    Diablo 3 really isn't my kind of game


    Just stick to talking about the AH. D3 isn't all about the AH. The AH is one property of it, and no one is forcing you to like it, use it, whatever. Once you start saying "D3 isn't my kind of game," I'm just going to start thinking you're biased to begin with, which essentially will lead you to criticize every single aspect of the game that doesn't float your boat.

    Well, you did say you didn't like the AH before D3 even came out, so technically you were already biased by the time the game was released.


    Well, I think I made it pretty clear that a lot of this was all opinions. I don't think what I have to say is absolute fact. I am biased, in some way, but I'd like to think my points at least hold some sort of merit.
    Jellyfish are the one and only true Wizards
  • #4
    Eh, the thing about the AH, is I have yet to see a trade method that is both casual friendly AND hardcore friendly - in other words, easy enough for people who just beat normal to use, and in depth enough for dedicated players to make a game out of it by upselling things.

    Also, I feel it has to be said - the AH doesn't have to be used, and there IS a person to person trading function.

    That said, I think the problem with the AH (aside from person issues such as "I prefer to trade with a person, not a website") is that good gear became too easy. Possibly because higher level characters sold gear to lower level. Which is basically a nice way of saying the AH made it too easy to trade with other people, making the flow of items to fast. Not sure how it's fixable.
  • #5
    Quote from TheDFO

    Eh, the thing about the AH, is I have yet to see a trade method that is both casual friendly AND hardcore friendly - in other words, easy enough for people who just beat normal to use, and in depth enough for dedicated players to make a game out of it by upselling things.

    Also, I feel it has to be said - the AH doesn't have to be used, and there IS a person to person trading function.

    That said, I think the problem with the AH (aside from person issues such as "I prefer to trade with a person, not a website") is that good gear became too easy. Possibly because higher level characters sold gear to lower level. Which is basically a nice way of saying the AH made it too easy to trade with other people, making the flow of items to fast. Not sure how it's fixable.


    Well, I think it's kind of silly to refuse to use an integral mechanic of a game because it makes the game easier. That's like me ignoring health packs in games because I dislike that it isn't realistic to roll over medical supplies and be healed. What you did say about the good gear becoming too easy is one of my points though. It's not fixable at all as far as I can think.
    Jellyfish are the one and only true Wizards
  • #6
    It's not really a big deal when you reach a point of power where your next upgrade is 200m. When that happens, you have no choice but to find your own gear.

    I've never bought anything off the AH for more than 5m and that was a few pieces. My best weapon, a 1200 DPS Chantodo wand, was self-found, which actually replaced the last weapon I had bought for 5m, if you can believe that.

    The problem with the AH is that it makes it very easy to see just how bad your gear is, and that's a problem for a lot of players and tends to undermine the overall personal enjoyment you might get from playing the game and acquiring power through your own efforts.

    Still I don't think it's a very good thing, (it's just caused so many problems) but I've learned to accept it.
  • #7
    Quote from Ghost_Sanguis

    Quote from TheDFO

    Eh, the thing about the AH, is I have yet to see a trade method that is both casual friendly AND hardcore friendly - in other words, easy enough for people who just beat normal to use, and in depth enough for dedicated players to make a game out of it by upselling things.

    Also, I feel it has to be said - the AH doesn't have to be used, and there IS a person to person trading function.

    That said, I think the problem with the AH (aside from person issues such as "I prefer to trade with a person, not a website") is that good gear became too easy. Possibly because higher level characters sold gear to lower level. Which is basically a nice way of saying the AH made it too easy to trade with other people, making the flow of items to fast. Not sure how it's fixable.


    Well, I think it's kind of silly to refuse to use an integral mechanic of a game because it makes the game easier. That's like me ignoring health packs in games because I dislike that it isn't realistic to roll over medical supplies and be healed. What you did say about the good gear becoming too easy is one of my points though. It's not fixable at all as far as I can think.


    Do you always set the difficulty slider to easiest? Probably not. I personally see it as a skill that they put in to try something new that can, in moderation, be helpful, but is really easy to become OPed with. While I don't think they shouldn't have had, I think it needs...something. Not sure what, but it makes it too easy to become OPed with.

    Quote from IgnatiusReilly

    It's not really a big deal when you reach a point of power where your next upgrade is 200m. When that happens, you have no choice but to find your own gear.

    I've never bought anything off the AH for more than 5m and that was a few pieces. My best weapon, a 1200 DPS Chantodo wand, was self-found, which actually replaced the last weapon I had bought for 5m, if you can believe that.

    The problem with the AH is that it makes it very easy to see just how bad your gear is, and that's a problem for a lot of players and tends to undermine the overall personal enjoyment you might get from playing the game and acquiring power through your own efforts.

    Still I don't think it's a very good thing, but I've learned to accept it.


    That is a good point about the gear being too bad. Maybe the reason why I like it was because I only used it to replace gear that was very outdated (5-10 levels).

    Perhaps they should have, instead of a gold AH, it should have been a trade house. You bid with items?
  • #8
    In my opinion, the AH is a good idea that fails due to poor implementation of item systems. Far too many times I have found a quadfecta item with horrible low rolls, making the item useless. In D2, even if you found a low roll item it would still be useful. ANY ARPG should not have random rolls so many times that just to find an upgrade requires the alignment of the stars. Thus, the AH seems like the problem when in fact it isn't.
  • #9
    The problem I have with the AH is that it turns an item finding game into a gold gathering game.
  • #10
    Quote from Ghost_Sanguis

    Quote from Jaetch

    Inb4 someone says "THEN DON'T USE THE AH."

    I don't hate the AH. I can see why it's the "easy way out" or it hurts the grind of the game, which is the whole point—grinding for loot.

    However, I do appreciate the AH being there because it's a safe medium for trade so you don't have to deal with potential scammers and 12-year-old babies who can't figure out how much their item is worth. In addition, being able to sell things there (let's just say you don't want to buy things) is such a great way to build up revenue because, face it, even if you trade player-to-player, they're going to want gold at some point or another.

    ...And not to bash, but this just comes down to D2 vs. D3, which has been wholesomely beaten to death; this is not really simply "I hate AH."

    Quote from Ghost_Sanguis
    Diablo 3 really isn't my kind of game


    Just stick to talking about the AH. D3 isn't all about the AH. The AH is one property of it, and no one is forcing you to like it, use it, whatever. Once you start saying "D3 isn't my kind of game," I'm just going to start thinking you're biased to begin with, which essentially will lead you to criticize every single aspect of the game that doesn't float your boat.

    Well, you did say you didn't like the AH before D3 even came out, so technically you were already biased by the time the game was released.


    Well, I think I made it pretty clear that a lot of this was all opinions. I don't think what I have to say is absolute fact. I am biased, in some way, but I'd like to think my points at least hold some sort of merit.


    Your problem is that you're letting other peoples gameplay styles affect how much fun you have. Stop it.
  • #11
    Quote from Vulmio

    The problem I have with the AH is that it turns an item finding game into a gold gathering game.


    this pretty much sums it up. 80% of the player base is pretty much forced to use the auction house, because lets face it, if you relied on drops only in this game, you'll probably reach paragon 100 before you reach diablo inferno.

    the other 20% are the players that are either lower than level 60 or have such amazing gear that it would take longer to aquire the gold for an upgrade than it is to actually search for upgrades themselves.

    I don't like the AH personally. not in a game like diablo. I've mentioned this is various posts already, but I'd really want a "no-AH" mode where you play with higher base magic find and rely on drops and carfting to aquire gear. It would make the game so much more exciting in my opinion.
  • #12
    The AH solved having to go to D2jsp. I like it and it made it a lot easier to exchange money for goods and in reverse with a near guaranteed system (I lost 1 item to an AH error once)

    If the AH wasn't there, I would be "forced" in a sense to sit at a chatroom advertising SS all day waiting for one person to come along and say they have the right item, then I would have to deal with whether or not I am going to get scammed in the trade window (something that was the case in D2/D3) On top of that I would need to go to D2JSP to sell items (just using that site, could be any other site where you could sell items)

    Do you really want to sit in a forum waiting for a trade or sale and then hoping the guy won't dispute your charge????

    It solved a lot of things and while people blame it for "ruining" the game, what it did was remove the middle man.
  • #13
    I think main reason why people feel compelled to use the Auction House is because of how loot is rolled. There are quite a few stats that no player really wants in a general sense, things like: +health and potions, thorns, gold find, life on kill. On top of that, the stats you do want can roll in a wide range, the odds of you actually getting an item that is an upgrade decreases dramatically the more items you acquire.

    With this, the AH provides a fantastic avenue to instead of playing RNG you can just buy the items you are looking for. The real problem here is that since you are buying items, the chances of you getting an upgrade from a drop significantly decreases. In a sense, you are stuck in a feedback loop with the AH.

    I highly recommend that the OP tries out Path of Exile. It's loot system is similar enough to D3 but adds in some interesting twists. Also, it's free.
  • #14
    Quote from pylorih

    The AH solved having to go to D2jsp. I like it and it made it a lot easier to exchange money for goods and in reverse with a near guaranteed system (I lost 1 item to an AH error once)

    If the AH wasn't there, I would be "forced" in a sense to sit at a chatroom advertising SS all day waiting for one person to come along and say they have the right item, then I would have to deal with whether or not I am going to get scammed in the trade window (something that was the case in D2/D3) On top of that I would need to go to D2JSP to sell items (just using that site, could be any other site where you could sell items)

    Do you really want to sit in a forum waiting for a trade or sale and then hoping the guy won't dispute your charge????

    It solved a lot of things and while people blame it for "ruining" the game, what it did was remove the middle man.


    People talk about beating a dead horse, but the reality is some people still don't understand the underlying issues.
  • #15
    The AH didn't ruin the game for me. The AH just changed the game. It introduced the possibility of acquiring items from other people or getting rid of items that don't suit your character; something that was also possible in D2, but the burden for making such an exchange was so high that 90% of the people probably never did it outside of their friends' circle.

    In order to "fix" this, the AH would need to be more difficult to access, just like the trading system in D2. I didn't use the AH the first few dozen hours, but at some point you just become so frustrated that you don't find anything useful and your gear sucks, and for almost no money you get an upgrade at the AH, so you take it. And since humans are quite susceptible to changes in their environment, your behavior also changes: you're not just looking for loot that improves your character, but also for loot that sells to buy yourself upgrades.

    However: anyone who claims that the first issue (finding lots and lots of stupid, useless loot) was different in D2 is a liar. At some point in hell with a high level character you got to the point of farming for days and days and days without seeing any useful drop at all. You would go to Gheed and gamble, you would do some rune upgrades, but I didn't really find any upgrades. If a game provides you with constant upgrades every few hours it becomes so boring because after 100 or 200 hours of playtime you have a perfect character full with BiS items (hi Torchlight). So please stop making up claims about D2 that aren't true. Haven't played PoE yet, but isn't it still in beta? All the D3 endgame issues didn't become apparent in the beta, either. It's stuff that you come across after 200+ hours...
  • #16
    Quote from Vulmio

    The problem I have with the AH is that it turns an item finding game into a gold gathering game.


    I quite like gold farming and selling my stuff on the AH.
    However the game is getting boring and most of my /F L have gone to POE :(
    So im playing hardcore now and its still fun but can only play about 1 hours before my mind looks for some stimulation..
  • #17
    Quote from Ghost_Sanguis

    To start, I'm fully aware of the fact that this topic has been discussed several times. I have hope that I won't get several replies stating the obvious and how I need to go QQ back to Diablo 2, but there is the chance that someone might entirely decide to reply to me based solely off the thread title itself. To everyone who decided to read first, I thank you. With that out of the way, let's continue.
    ....................

    Well.. I mean, I guess, but that seems more like a bow of defeat to me than anything. Sure, it worked, but it still ruined the game for me in a way.


    I stopped reading your post and you know why?
    If you want to discuss about a feature of the game which you don't find good, such as the AH, do not take it personally because it really does seem like QQ. You try to write objectively but at the end you reflect it back to you, making it personal and it's a fact that when someone is QQing to much, people will tell him to suck it up. In every damn thing, not just video games. I realized that when I was back at school.

    Nonetheless, I don't really like the AH but I can understand the reasons behind. Yes, those hysteric reasons for blizzard earning billions too.
  • #18
    Have to say, OP, I agree with your list, for the most part. You make some terrific points, that I'd only like to add to.......

    For one thing, I don't believe the Auction House is necessarily a bad idea or concept. Though, I think featuring it in a game where getting far and having your numbers and stats be really high is mostly an epeen stroke, was an unfortunate choice. "Day 1 veterans" who made it through Inferno at launch PREEN about their success, and think that's a badge of courage, though the part they tend to leave out is that they likely used the Auction House to circumvent the game's initial difficulty. Blizzard even said, before launch, that their concept for Inferno was that it was supposed to be the game's main endgame...that once you finished Hell, you entered a new difficulty that would trump all others before it. Sure enough, it did, making many players feel discouraged...which isn't a bad thing, but when they want as instant gratification as they can get, their next stop was the AH to gear up heavily, and what do ya know? They made it through Inferno in little to no time.

    Since then, Blizzard has taken a lot of steps. They've nerfed Inferno monsters on the whole, but added Monster Power on top. Which means, casual gamers can get through Inferno much easier, but harder-core players have far more to work toward. Also, in the new patch, they're adding new crafting recipes, increasing the drop rates of existing recipes (so those exceptionally rare gem plan drops should be dropping more often, too, which is nice), as well as increasing the XP reward on higher MPs...which means more people can grind to Paragon level 100 easier, which means more legendary and set drops, which to me, says pretty much one thing...

    The Auction House is officially, 100% UNNECESSARY! It may have once been to beat this game, but not anymore. A person can use only self-found gear (and gear found BY self-found geared characters to acquire hand-me-downs to others, kinda why the shared stash is so big) and make it through Inferno perfectly safely. My Barb is pushing close to 40k DPS, all via gear I've found, not bought. I'm pretty happy about that.

    So I don't hate the Auction House myself, but I do agree that it kills much of the interest people could have in finding gear themselves. I still really dig the work it takes to build my characters from the ground up and put all the necessary work into making them better. I like the prospect of someday, being able to compare my character with another self-found geared character and commiserate on how lucky we got with some of our drops.

    While two people who geared up via the AH, while following the instructions of some YouTube "pro" that makes a "buying guide" is going to look pretty much identical as the next person who did the same thing. Me and the other self-founder? Our gear sets are going to be 100% different. That's how it should be. I've made certain choices with drops and pickups, that show through in my characters' gearsets. Someone who just buys BiS gear because some internet celebrity told them what to buy? That's sad.

    And what aggravates me most is one of your points...that people buy all their gear from the AH, then complain that drops aren't matching up. Well of course they aren't matching up! PLAYERS are selling all the stuff on the AH, which means you're getting things that players themselves are deeming worthy to sell. Naturally, they're going to be items with good affixes, high rolls, etc. Since most of my characters (aside from my Wizard) are wearing self-found gear, I can find at least two or three potential upgrades every time I sit down to play, and MANY pieces that may not be formal upgrades but pieces that COULD be upgrades if I were to switch around the right other pieces that I find.

    I mean, people say this game is "gear-dependent." Well, when this much gear drops, I kinda think it should be. It's not wrong to make an action game like this dependent on gear, when so much of it appears when killing monsters. Maybe a formal RPG, with deep character customization elements (down to facial expressions and sometimes even VOICE), should have deeper customization options to build them, but Diablo is so much more about action, killing and loot. Yes, it has a great story to it, wonderful lore and a great universe, but for all the 2000+ hour D2 vets who say D3's story sucks, I'd be willing to bet most of them skipped through D2's story at least 3000 times while power leveling new toons.

    TLDR: I definitely don't think the AH ruined this game. Players overuse it and ruin it for themselves. Everyone wants to feel godly, but wanting that so much that one sacrifices their integrity and buys their gear? Not the way to get the most enjoyment out of this game. Items like the Manticore, Skorn, Echoing Fury, Dead Man's Legacy, Mempo of Twilight, Vile Ward, ALL SET ITEMS, those items are still out there for me to find, when I find them, I'll make good use of them. For people who have put in half the time I've played for, AND already have them? They have no right to blame Blizzard for bad drop rates and crummy "itemization." They killed any enjoyment they could've gotten out of itemization they moment they turned into an AH hound and got addicted to buying endgame level gear.
    Pre AH-shutdown Transcendence/Spirit (Re)gen build, uses only found and crafted gear and gems, can handle MP7.
  • #19
    The AH would be fine if they somehow made the item HUNT attractive too, not just buying stuff. There needs to be extra incentive to find stuff and use stuff you find.
  • #20
    I think the biggest thing against the AH is that people seem to think beating D3 Inferno=D2 Hell/lvl99. My understanding before release (and my goals in regards to leveling characters) was that it was more along the lings of Uber Tristram - Something for the super dedicated people (who put in the needed 200+ hours) to do.

    If you look at it that way, then it works out WAY better, and my personal experience is drop upgrades are roughly on par with D2. The drops didn't change, it's just more people were trying the "end game," assuming that anyone was supposed to be able to beat it with not much effort. I guess Blizzard should have made that more clear.
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