Showing posts with label mat promotion. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mat promotion. Show all posts

Fine Crafting Materials Revisited

In the past on this blog I have explored the potential profits to be made promoting crafting materials in the Mystic Forge. I have articles discussing the specific promotion of rare materials, fine materials, common materials, and piles of dust. Today, however, I would like to revisit the promotion of fine materials. Originally I had dismissed promoting lower tier fine materials as being unprofitable. Thanks to Egg Baron reader ZoCks this assumption was challenged and I was proven wrong. There are in fact excellent profits to be made promoting some of the lower tiers. Today I will share with you my assumptions, my experiences, and the updates I made to my crafting materials promotion spreadsheet.


My Assumptions



All the fine materials.
Tier 1 at the top row tier 6 in the bottom row.
The main thing that needs to be determined, in order to calculate the profitability of a promotion formula, is the number of materials that the Mystic Forge outputs per promotion done. This is easy for the rare crafting materials which have no random components to the output. You put in the materials and you always get out the same thing. This is different for the fine materials and the common materials. The number of materials returned is different every time. The best that we can hope to accomplish is to determine the average number of materials returned.

Luckily, from my experiences and from what I have read on the GW2 wiki, not every recipe has a different random output. Recipes of a given rarity and tier all seem to output the same number of materials on average. In other words all tier 5 fine crafting materials when promoted will on average yield the same number of tier 6 fine crafting materials. I have not rigorously tested this (although I have tested it to my satisfaction) thus it is an assumption.

I have extended this assumption slightly further when dealing with the additional tiers. It is obvious that there is a discontinuity between promoting from tier 5 to 6 and promoting tier 4 to 5. That is when you promote tier 5 materials into tier 6 materials you do not receive the same number of materials as output when you promote tier 4 materials into tier 5 materials. You will receive more for the tier 4 to 5 promotion. However, when you promote tier 1 to 2, 2 to 3, 3 to 4, or 4 to 5 you seem to receive the same average number of materials as output. Again, I have not rigorously tested this (but, again I have done so to my satisfaction) thus it is another assumption in this process.


My Trials


In order to determine the average number of materials returned when promoting the lower tiers of fine materials I did two promotions. In the first I promoted 3500 Tiny Fangs. In the second I promoted 500 Heavy Bones. Firstly, though for context this is the recipe for a single promotion for fine crafting materials (with the exception of piles of dust).

     50 Tier X Fine Materials
   +  1 Tier X+1 Fine Materials
   +  5 Tier X+1 Dust
   +  X Philosopher Stones
   = a random number of Tier X+1 Fine Materials

Where, X, is the tier of the material you are promoting. Thus, if you were promoting tier 3 materials you would need, 50 tier 3 materials, 1 tier 4 materials, 5 Piles of Luminous Dust (tier 4 dust), and 3 Philosopher Stones.

Here are my results. Firstly, for promoting the Tiny Fangs,

     3500 Tiny Fangs
   +   70 Small Fangs
   +  350 Piles of Shimmering Dust
   +   70 Philosopher Stones
   = 1163 Small Fangs

Removing the Small Fangs used in the formula leaves me with 1093 Small Fangs for 3500 Tiny Fangs. On average I received 15.6 Small Fangs for every 50 Tiny Fangs. This is not to bad and I had profits of about 70 silver per skill point. This is a good baseline for the average number of materials to expect as output. I have rounded this figure down to 15 for use in the spreadsheet. For those interested in the raw numbers here they are (12 9, 15, 9, 9, 25, 15, 19, 16, 11, 10, 25, 27, 16, 16, 15, 13, 11, 16, 9, 12, 38, 10, 15, 8, 10, 11, 24, 32, 15, 16, 9, 20, 26, 16, 22, 18, 14, 17, 14, 14, 12, 13, 13, 22, 37, 15, 9, 22, 12, 12, 12, 16, 11, 9, 33, 35, 14, 26, 28, 9, 13, 24, 15, 21, 13, 15, 12, 17, 14 = 1163)

Next, here are my results for promoting the Heavy Bones,

      500 Heavy Bones
   +   10 Large Bones
   +   50 Piles of Incandescent Dust
   +   40 Philosopher Stones
   =  211 Large Bones

Removing the Large Bone used in the formula leaves me with 201 Large Bones for 500 Heavy Bones. On average I received 20.1 Large Bone for every 50 Heavy Bone. I did not make any profit on this (in fact I lost quite a bit) but I did determine that the average output from this formula is similar enough to the output of the tier 1 to tier 2 formula to make the assumption that you receive the same number of materials when promoting any tier between 1 and 4. This seems to be others experience as well. For those interested in the raw numbers here they are (16, 18, 11, 37, 28, 16, 34, 17, 18, 16 = 211).


Spreadsheet Updates


I have gone ahead and added this information to my spreadsheet. You can now see the potential profits to be made promoting the rest of the tiers of fine crafting materials with the exception of the piles of dust. They have a slightly different formula and different outputs that need to be determined.


You will also notice that I have split the "simple view" up into three different sheets. You will now find the rare materials, common materials, and fine materials on their own spreadsheets. You can access the various spreadsheets using the tabs at the bottom of the screen.



Conclusions


Promoting lower tier crafting materials can be profitable. Right now you can easily make 50 - 80 silver per skill point promoting some of the tier 1 fine materials into tier 2 fine materials. The markets move relatively quickly as well meaning their is room to be made in the margins and you won't be sitting around on your inventory for long.

Again special thanks to ZoCks for pushing me to get this done and for informing me of the profits to begin with. I hope everyone can use this to their advantage. Let me know how you do in the comments.

Skill Points to Gold Spreadsheet Update

I recently released a dynamic spreadsheet that calculates the expected return you could expect to receive when promoting crafting materials from one tier to another and keeps its data up-to-date from GW2Spidy.com. I am happy to announce that I am ready to share the newest version of this spreadsheet with my readers. This spreadsheet is the culmination of the work I did writing blog posts about promoting common crafting materials, fine crafting materials, rare crafting materials, and piles of dust through the mystic forge. The new sheet has a number of new features, such as, a simplified view, Tier 1 - 5 Rare Crafting Materials, faster updates, and an update log. With that said here is the spreadsheet,

Egg Baron Material Promotion Spreadsheet - Last Updated February 16th, 2013.
* Feb 4th, 2013 - Posted Publically
* Feb 5th, 2013 - Added column showing profits using Mystic Binding Agent
* Feb 16th, 2013 - Added the rest of the fine crafting material promotions (tier 1-2, 2-3, 3-4, and 4-5). Also, split simple view up into three different sheets, one for rare materials, fine materials, and common materials. Access the different sheets via the tabs at the bottom of the screen. For more details see this post.

A special thanks goes out to ZoCks for helping me collect data!


Simplified View and the Risk Column


The new simplified view.
The most obvious change is the simplified view. The simplified view was designed to give readers an easy way to view the most important information about the various promotions. It shows the formula used in the Mystic Forge, the expected output, expected average profit per attempt and per skill point, and a risk assessment.

The risk assessment is based on how likely it is for you to turn a profit. "No Profit" means that even in the best scenario you will not profit. "Extreme" means that only in the very best scenario will you profit. "High" means that you will only profit in cases above average. "Average" means that you will only profit when you perform at the average or better. "Low" means you will profit in all cases expect the worst results possible. "None" means that even in the worst case scenario you will still profit. Keep in mind that none of this takes into account the fluctuations in the market while you perform transactions. That is a risk you need to access for yourself. This risk assessment only takes into account the fluctuations in the output from the Mystic Forge.

You can select a sheet to view from these tabs.
The simplified view should be the active sheet when you open the spreadsheet. If not you can access it via the sheets tabs towards the bottom of the window. You will also see three other tabs; "Detailed View", "raw data", and "log". The detailed view looks the same as the old spreadsheet showing calculations and cost/profit/revenue breakdown. For instructions on reading this sheet see my old blog post. I will talk more about the raw data sheet and log sheet below.


Other Updates


I have also added the rest of the rare crafting material promotions. Currently, none of them are profitable but recent market shifts have opened up possibilities. Now it should be easy to watch for opportunities. I hope to follow this change up by eventually adding the rest of the fine and common crafting materials but more research is required into output quantities. Also, if it turns out the new "Mystic Binding Agents" effects profitability on promoting rare materials I will attempt to factor this into the spreadsheet and make an update.

Next, I did a lot of work on how the code gets the data from GW2Spidy. Formerly, I made a series of tiny requests to GW2Spidy for each piece of data then updated each cell one at a time. You may have seen this happening as you used the old version. The new spreadsheet makes one large request for all the data. This data is then cached for use for a variable amount of time (currently, 15 minutes the same amount of time GW2Spidy keeps its data). Updating the cache with 20,729 items from GW2Spidy takes roughly 30 - 60 seconds, however, this sheet only grabs the 1,019 crafting materials as this is quicker taking roughly 5 seconds. Once the data is cached it can be accessed instantly. 

I have also moved all the raw data to its own sheet called "raw data". This sheet gives me a central place to select which items I am interested in and get all the information about them. Updating all the data in one central location is much faster then updating individual cells. Now, if the cache contains fresh data, the spreadsheet will update nearly instantly.

Finally, I have added a log. The log records each time the spreadsheet is updated, each time the cache is updated, and any errors that occur when connecting to GW2Spidy. Now it is much easier to tell if the data being displayed is fresh, or if there is some sort of error holding the update process up.


Fair Warning


Please report bugs or errors in the comments or via e-mail.
I have been running most of the new code for about a week and I believe I have eliminated all the bugs and errors. Every time my spreadsheet scripts generate an error it is logged and once an hour I am e-mailed a report. The only error I can not eliminate is a timeout error associated with Google's URLFetchApp. Sometimes when I attempt to retrieve data from GW2Spidy I am unable to complete the transfer but instead of receiving an HTTP error the fetch function times out and crashes the script. This can happen because of a slow transfer rate between GW2Spidy and Google or when the connection is interrupted, for example.  Looking into this there does not seem to currently be a work around and Google is working on a solution. There is nothing I can do as it is Google's function that causes my script to stop running. I can not even catch this and report it in the log. The only way to tell that this is happening is if you see a message in the log stating a cache update started without a reciprocal caching completed message. I tell you all this to let you know about the sheets limitations. It is not perfect. It is not fully tested. Use this sheet to look for opportunities then follow up with research in game. If you see any error or problems please do not hesitate to let me know via e-mail or through the comments below.


Using my code


If you would like your own version of this spreadsheet you may copy it to your Google Docs for your own private use and modify it an anyway you wish. When you copy the spreadsheet you will also copy the script I wrote. If you would like to use this sheet or my script to publish your own material please leave a reference  to my blog somewhere within your body of work. I also would like to see how people are using my spreadsheet so please let me know about your modification whether private or public. You can add me as a collaborator via my e-mail address if you do not wish to make your work globally public.

With that said, yes it is now possible to modify this sheet to your hearts content. Simply add your own ID numbers to the first column of the raw data sheet in a copy of this spreadsheet on your Google Docs. The next time the spreadsheet updates the GW2Spidy data for this item will be added to the raw data sheet in the columns to the right of the ID column. I will have more details about creating your own spreadsheet using my code in the future. For now feel free to play around with it and ask questions in the comments below. I believe I have clean code that is well commented, so you should be able to make out alright yourself.


Legacy version of the Old Sheet


I will be turning off the old spreadsheet in about one weeks time. The sheet will remain shared in my Google Docs folder but the script will no longer run and the data will no longer update. I have placed warnings in the spreadsheet about this cut off dating instructing people to come here to obtain the new spreadsheet. If you would like a copy of the old spreadsheet please copy it before February 8th, 2013. At this time I will also add a warning to my blog post on the old spreadsheet indicating that it is no longer active and linking to the new spreadsheet.

~~~~

As always let me know what you think of my content. It helps me decide what to do more of and what to do less of. If you are a regular user of this spreadsheet be sure to come back to my site every now and then to check for update and to get your Guild Wars 2 news.

Converting Skillpoints to Gold

Today, I would like to share with you a spreadsheet that I have been working on for a while. It takes everything that I learned writing the articles on promoting common, fine, and rare materials, as well as piles of dust. This spreadsheet automatically pulls data from GW2Spidy.com and shows you the costs, revenues, profits, and risks associated with promoting crafting materials.


About the Spreadsheet


It is still a work in progress and I know there are things that I can improve. Namely, this spreadsheet is not easy to read unless you know what is being discussed. I will try to explain those things below to make it easier. Also, this spreadsheet only has conversions for tier 5 to 6 fine materials and rare materials as that is all I have researched so far. When I get more data on the rates for the lower tiers I will add those as well.

** Update ** I have updated the spreadsheet. Please go to my latest blog post for more information.

Anyway, here is the spreadsheet. It is on Google docs and anyone can access it and read it. You should not need to register for anything to view it. When it is opened it should automatically update the buy prices and sell prices for the promotion formula involved. It is also set to automatically update once an hour.

I will quickly explain the values that you will see in each of the columns.

  • Description
    • Lower Material
      • The name of the lower tier material to be promoted.
    • Higher Material
      • The name of the material the "Lower Material" will be promoted into.
    • Dust Required
      • The name of the pile of dust required to promote "Lower Material" into "Higher Material"
    • Low ID
      • The GW2Spidy ID for the "Lower Material". *See getting ID below.
    • High ID
      • The GW2Spidy ID for the "Higher Material". *See getting ID below.
    • Dust ID
      • The GW2Spidy ID for the "Dust Required". *See getting ID below.
  • Costs
    • Lower Material Cost
      • The highest buy order listed on GW2Spidy for "Lower Material".
    • # of Lower Material
      • The number of "Lower Material" required in the promotion formula.
    • Total Material Cost
      • Calculation: "Lower Material Cost" times "# of Lower Material".
    • Dust Cost
      • The highest buy order listed on GW2Spidy for "Dust Required".
    • Number of Dust
      • The number of "Dust Required" used in the promotion formula.
    • Total Dust Cost
      • Calculation: "Dust Cost" times "Number of Dust".
    • # of Elonian Wine
      • The number of Bottles of Elonian Wine needed in the promotion formula.
    • Elonian Wine Cost
    • Total Wine Cost
      • Calculation: "# of Elonian Wine" times "Elonian Wine Cost"
    • Total Cost
      • Calculation: "Total Material Cost" plus "Total Dust Cost" plus "Total Wine Cost"
  • Revenue
    • Price of High Material
      • The lowest sell order list on GW2Spidy for "Higher Materail"
    • Number of Higher Material Returned
      • The expected number of "Higher Material" that will be produced. Divided into five categories to show you your risk.
      • Low: The absolute worst case.
      • Low Average: Slightly lower than the average, what you can expect in a realistic worst case when running larger numbers of promotions.
      • Average: The number of materials you can expect to obtain. This is based on my trials.
      • High Average: Slightly higher than the average, what you can expect in a realistic best case when running larger numbers of promotions.
      • High: The absolute best case.
    • Revenue
      • Calculation: "Price of High Material" times "Number of Higher Material Returned".
    • Trading Post Fee
      • The amount taken, as a percent, by the Trading Post as a fee.
    • Revenue After Fee
      • Calculation: "Revenue" times (1 - "Trading Post Fee")
  • Skill Points
    • # of Philo Stones
      • The number of Philosopher Stones required to promote "Lower Material" into "Higher Material"
    • # of Crystals
      • The number of Crystals required to promote "Lower Material" into "Higher Material"
    • # of SP / Try
      • Calculation: ("# of Philo Stones" / 10) + (3 * "# of Crystals" / 5)
  • Profit
    • Net Profit Per Attempt
      • Calculation: "Revenue After Fee" minus "Total Costs"
    • Profit Per Skill Point
      • "Net Profit Per Attempt" divided by "# of SP / Try"
    • Return of Costs
      • "Net Profit Per Attempt" divided by "Total Costs"
  • Last Update
    • Low Mat
      • The last time "Lower Material Cost" was updated on GW2Spidy.com
    • High Mat
      • The last time "Price of High Material" was updated on GW2Spidy.com
    • Dust
      • The last time "Dust Cost" was updated on GW2Spidy.com
You may also notice that the columns and cells have different colours. The colours just represent where the data is coming from. Stuff on a white background are item names and IDs. Cells with a pink coloured background are cells that have data pulled automatically from GW2Spidy.com. Oranges cells are variables and constants associated with the promotion recipe. Cells with a grey background are cells that are calculated with a formula. Finally, green cells are cells in the profit section showing a profit, where as, red cells in the profit section show a loss.

* Getting GW2Spidy ID. To get the ID simply go to GW2Spidy.com and search for the item you wish to retrieve the ID for. For example, "Egg". Navigate to the page for the item you are looking for. The URL for this page will look something like this, "http://www.gw2spidy.com/item/12143". The five digit number, in this case 12143 for eggs, is the ID.


Using the Spreadsheet


Using the spreadsheet is easy. Once you load it up the prices will slowly update. If you scroll all the way to the right you will see the "Last Update" section and may even see these change as the prices are updated. This is live data from GW2Spidy showing you the age of the data I have pulled for the prices of the commodities. This should be no older than one hour as that is the minimum time between updates. If it is older than an hour, something is wrong with the spreadsheet or GW2Spidy might be down.

Once you are sure the data is up-to-date, scroll to the "Profits" section. If you are looking to convert skill points into gold look to the "Profit Per Skill Point" section. You will see that in this section there are five columns, Low, Low Average, Average, High Average, and High. I have added these columns to help you judge your risk. Your risk is always higher the fewer promotions you perform. This is due to something called "the law large numbers". Basically it states, the more you perform an action with random chance the more your average result will tend towards a true mean. On the wiki page linked, they use the example of rolling a six-sided die. The more you roll this die, the closer your average roll (the sum of all your rolls divided by the number of rolls made) will be 3.5 [ (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6) / 6 = 3.5]. This is because there are more ways for you to roll a large number of dice and receive an average of 3.5 than any other combination of dice rolls. For example, think of the extreme case of having an average of one over ten rolls. There is only one way to order the dice to get an average of one: every die showing a one. The next lowest average you could obtain is 1.1 with nine dice showing a one and one die showing a two. Each of the ten dice could be the two, thus there are ten different ways to achieve this average, versus the one way to obtain the average of one. You would find that if you calculated all the averages that it would be most likely to roll the dice such that the average is 3.5. And this only gets more likely the more dice you roll.

With that said, the more times you do your promotion the more likely you are to obtain the result in the "Average" column. If you only do a couple promotions or just one you could receive any result between "Low" and "High". If you do around ten promotions you will most likely be between Low Average and High Average with your result. Use this as a guide to determining your risk. Anything can happen. You could roll ten ones in a row. The Law of Large Numbers is not a fact. If you roll nine ones in a row there is nothing that says other results are more likely on the tenth roll. The tenth roll still has a one in six chance to give each of the results including another one.

I tell you all this because this method is a gamble, there is no lying about that. You need to judge the risk for yourself. You also have to keep in mind that these markets can be volatile and change within hours. Do not be afraid to hold on to produced materials until you can sell them for a profit. Also, making your own dust to lower its cost can help increase profits.


Conclusions


I hope this spreadsheet helps you. I have already shared it with some guild mates and they have told me that it is intimidating. I hope that this guide helps you understand what is going on in this spreadsheet. It is really quite simple once you take a moment to examine it. If you have any problems with it, or have a question please do not hesitate to ask it below and I will do my best to answer. Most importantly if you notice any mistakes or bugs please let me know.

Now that I have all the data in the spreadsheet I will work on making an easier to read version of this sheet that shows less data in an easier to read format, perhaps with pictures. Also, I learned a lot about scripting for spreadsheets working on this project. This means that if this sheet proves popular I will create more spreadsheets in the future, and perhaps do a tutorial on how to make your own.

Finally, let me know about your successes. As much as I am gaining from having made this spreadsheet (roughly 30-50 silver per skill point) I want you guys to be successful as well. I hope this helps you make some silver. Good luck!

Promoting Common Crafting Materials

This is part of an on going series where I show the reader how to promote crafting materials and talk about the possibilities of using this method to convert skill points into gold. I have previously done articles on promoting rare materials, fine materials, and piles of dust. Today I will be discussing common crafting materials.


What are common crafting materials


There are an absolute ton of common crafting materials. According to the common crafting materials tab in your banks collections tab there are 62 of them. If we search the Black Lion Trading Post for common crafting materials we get 641 search results. Luckily, I will be simplifying this and I will only be talking about the 51 common crafting materials that can be promoted. The common crafting materials, like the fine and rare materials, come in a number of categories and a number of tiers. In all there are eight categories of materials in six tiers. The categories of materials include, Ores, Ingots, Scraps, Bolts, Leather Sections, Leather Squares, Logs, and Planks. Most of these materials follow the normal promotion paths, you take a lower tier material and turn it into a higher tier materials. There are two exceptions, the Ores and the Ingots.

Ore Promotion Path
The Ores are one of the materials that follows a strange promotion path. You promote Copper, to Iron, Iron to Platinum, Platinum or Mithril, and Mithril to Orichalcum, but you can also promote Silver to Gold and then Gold to Platinum. Thus, both Gold and Iron promote to Platinum with Gold being considered a higher tier material for the promotion.

Ingot Promotion Path
The Ingots also follow an odd promotion path. Firstly, you can promote Copper to Silver, Silver to Gold, Gold to Platinum, Platinum to Mithril, and Mithril to Orichalcum, however you can also promote Darksteel into Mithril. Thus, we have two materials promoting into Mithril with Darksteel considered a lower tier material for the promotion. This is not it for the Ingots though as there is a separate promotion path for Bronze to Iron and Iron to Steel. In this case Steal is a dead end that can not be promoted into anything else.

The other categories of materials follow the normal promotion paths as each category only contain one material of each tier and that material simply promotes into the material one tier higher than it. For completeness sake those promotion are as follows. For Scraps and Bolts; Jute into Wool, Wool into Cotton, Cotton into Linen, Linen into Silk, and Silk into Gossamer. For Leather Sections and Squares; Rawhide into Thin, Thin into Coarse, Coarse into Rugged, Rugged into Thick, and Thick into Hardened. Finally, for Logs and Planks; Green into Soft, Soft into Seasoned, Seasoned into Hard, Hard into Elder, and Elder into Ancient.


The Formula


The formula for promoting common crafting materials is simple and takes the following form for Ores, Scraps, Leather Sections, and Logs,

     250 Tier X Material
   + 1 Tier X + 1 Material
   + 5 Tier X + 1 Piles of Dust
   + X Philosophers Stones
   = random # of Tier X + 1 Mats

This may look confusing, but trust me it is not. Simply allow X to be the tier of the material that you are promoting. This means that you will need one of the materials that your are promoting too, 5 Piles of Dust of one higher tier than the material you are promoting, and a number of Philosopher Stones equal to the tier of the material you are promoting. For example, if you wanted to promote Mithril Ore (tier 5 material) into Orichalcum Ore you would use the following formula,

    250 Mithril Ore
  + 1 Orichalcum Ore
  + 5 Piles of Crystalline Dust
  + 5 Philosopher Stones
  = random # of Orichalcum Ore

If you are promoting Ingots, Bolts, Leather Squares, or Planks then you simply need to double the number of Philosopher Stones you need. Therefore, the formula for promoting these materials is as follows,

     250 Tier X Material
   + 1 Tier X + 1 Material
   + 5 Tier X + 1 Piles of Dust
   + 2 * X Philosophers Stones
   = random # of Tier X + 1 Mats

I think this is straight forward. There is an example in the image to the right. If you have any questions feel free to ask in the comments below.


My Trials


I performed a number of promotion trials in order to attempt to determine the average number of materials that you can expect to obtain from promoting one tier into another. My first trial I converted Silk Scraps into Gossamer Scraps,

    4500 Silk Scraps
  + 18 Gossamer Scraps
  + 90 Crystalline Dust
  + 90 Philosopher Stones
  = 332 Gossamer Scraps

This means that I produced a net 314 Gossamer Scraps over 18 trials which means I made an average of 17.4 Gossamer Scraps per 250 Silk Scraps. The raw numbers for each trial were as follows; 20, 20, 16, 18, 18, 15, 21, 15, 15, 16, 17, 14, 19, 15, 22, 32, 22, and 17. Costs per trial were, half a skill point for the Philosopher Stones, 25 silver for the Silk Scraps (10 copper each), and 25 silver for the Piles of Crystalline Dust (5 silver each). Revenue is roughly 53.5 silver for the gossamer scraps (3.7 silver each less 15% TP fees). Thus, there was a profit of 3.5 silver per attempt, or 7 silver per skill point.

I have an assumption that all promotions from tier 5 to tier 6 will yield the same number of materials per attempt. My results from converting Silk Scraps into Gossamer Scraps showed similar results to what I obtained promoting Incandescent Dust into Crystalline Dust. Thus the next obvious step is to try to convert another tier 5 material to a tier 6 material to see if this assumption holds. I choose to promote Bolts of Silk into Bolts of Gossamer,

    2000 Bolts of Silk
  + 8 Bolts of Gossamer
  + 40 Crystalline Dust
  + 80 Philosopher Stones
  = 147 Bolts of Gossamer

This means that I produced a net 139 Bolts of Gossamer over 8 trials thus I made an average of 17.4 Bolts of Gossamer per 250 Bolts of Silk. The raw number for each trail were as follows; 15, 19, 19, 14, 11, 20, 33, and 16. Costs per trail were, one skill point for the Philosopher Stones, 50 silver for the Bolts of Silk (20c each), and 25 silver for the Piles of Crystalline Dust (5 silver each). Revenue is roughly 114 silver for the Bolts of Gossamer (7.7 silver each less 15% TP fees). Thus, the profit per attempt is 39 silver which is the same as the profit per skill point.


Conclusions


I think it is safe to assume that converting all tier 5 materials into tier 6 materials has the same random chance involved. The results from my Silk Scraps to Gossamer Scraps, Incandescent Dust to Crystalline Dust, and Bolts of Silk to Bolts of Gossamer are all very similar with averages of 17.4, 19.0, and 17.4 respectively and all attempts falling between 10 and 38 materials produced per attempt. If I average together all of my attempts I come to a value of on average 18.0 materials produced per attempt.

We can also generalize a profit formula from this,

  Profit = (A * X * 0.85) - (B * 250) - (C * 5)
    where,
      A = price of tier 6 material on TP
      B = cost of tier 5 material on TP
      C = cost of Crystalline Dust on TP
      X = number of tier 6 mats produced per 250 tier 5 mats

I choose not to promote any of the lower tier materials into the higher tier materials as they did not look to be profitable as most tier 1-5 common materials are the same price for their individual categories. From what I have read you can expect to receive, on average, more materials when doing these promotions. Perhaps, in the future when I have some spare silver I will do these trials as well.

Promoting common materials can be profitable. The key, as with any venture, is to buy your input materials low and sell your output materials high. Remember the profits I am showing in this article use the current market prices as of the time I wrote this article. The profits you can expect will vary based on the market. I hope to write an article this week, time permitting, that takes all the articles I have written, thus far, on promoting materials and combines the results into an easy to use spreadsheet. Check back for this, but in the mean time check out my articles on promoting rare and fine materials as well as Piles of Dust.

Promoting Rare Materials

If you have been following my blog, than you know that I have been doing a series of articles on using your skill points to earn gold. I have already discussed promoting fine materials including promoting piles of dust and today I would like to discuss transmuting rare materials.


The Rare Materials


There are a number of different rare crafting materials, 49 in all if we go by the collections tab in the GW2 bank, 106 if we search the trading post for rare crafting mats. Today I will be discussing the rare materials that can be promoted from one tier to the next. These are often called the tiered rare crafting materials and come in eight categories and five tiers much like the fine crafting materials. The categories are; Charged, Corrupted, Crystal, Destroyer, Glacial, Molten, Onyx, and Piles of Essence. Although the Piles of Essence can be promoted, the market is just too saturated with them to currently make a profit plus it is easier to just talk about the other seven. These seven materials all follow a naming convention based on their category and tier. The tiers are named. from one to five, are as follows; Sliver, Fragment, Shard, Core, and Lodestone. So, for example;  Charged Sliver, Charged Fragment, Charged Shard, Charged Core, and Charged Lodestone. The same applies for each category and tier. These rare materials have a number of uses including as components for legendary weapons and awesome looking exotic weapons. Today I will just be talking about promoting them and making money doing it.


The Recipe


The mystic forge recipe for promoting the rare materials involves no luck, and no randomness. You put in two of the lower tier materials, a Bottle of Elonian Wine, a Pile of Dust, and a Crystal and always get one higher tier rare materials out. The tier of dust required is the tier of the rare material you are promoting plus two, so if you are promoting a sliver to a fragment you use Radiant Dust, fragments to shards require Luminous Dust, shards to cores need Incandescent Dust, and finally, cores to lodestones use Crystalline Dust. Otherwise you always need a bottle of Elonian Wine and one Crystal. Thus the generalized formula is,
  2 Tier X Rare Material
+ 1 Tier X+2 Dust
+ 1 Elonian Wine
+ 1 Crystal
= 1 Tier X+1 Material
Simply replace X with the tier of the rare material you are promoting. Place these materials into the mystic forge and out comes one material of the higher tier. It is nice to not have to deal with randomness and because of this I can go straight to calculating our expected profit.



Expected Profit


As I mentioned above, without any randomness we can move straight into calculating our expected returns. Our revenue is the market value of the higher tier materials minus the 15% market fee. Our costs are the price of the dust, the price of two rare materials to promote, and the Elonian Wine. The dust and rare materials can be bought from the auction house or farmed and the Elonian Wine can be bought from Miyani by the Mystic Forge in Lion's Arch for 25 silver 60 copper. This fixed cost is what will determine if a material is worth promoting. We can generalize our profit formula (in silver) as follows;
Profit = (A * 0.85) - (B * 2) - C - 25.6
  where,
    A = price of Tier X+1 Material on Trading Post
    B = price of Tier X Material on Trading Post
    C = price of Tier X+2 Dust on Trading Post
Take for example, promoting Charged Cores into a Charged Lodestone. A Charged Lodestone should sell for 360 silver (A), a Charged Core could be purchased for 145 silver (B), and a Pile of Crystalline Dust could be bought for 5.3 silver (C). If we put these values into the formula we find that currently promoting Charged Cores into Charged Lodestones would not be profitable and we would lose roughly 15 silver per transaction. However, Destroyer Cores can be bought for 35 silver, and Destroyer Lodestones sold for 130 silver. If you do the math there is 10 silver profit to be made there. That may not seem like much but each attempt only takes 3/5ths of a skill point. If you want to use the above formula to calculate profit per skill point simply multiply the result by 1.67. You can also buy input materials when the market is low and sell output materials when the market it high to increase your profits.


Conclusions


At first glance promoting rare materials may not seem as profitable as promoting fine materials, but you have to consider a number of things to come to an equal comparison. Firstly, the fine materials promotion includes and element of change and risk that rare material promotion does not. Secondly, the tier 5 rare materials market is highly volatile as there are not a lot of the materials available for sale. That means you can take advantages in the peaks in the market and act as a stabilizing force to balance out rare material prices and make a profit while doing so.

I hope this discussion and my other discussions on promoting fine materials and piles of dust has helped you make some silver. I plan to continue this series of articles with one of promoting common crafting materials and then a final article bringing together all the knowledge and determining the best way to convert your skill points into silver and gold.

Dust Promotion

Before the holidays I talked about promoting fine crafting materials into higher levels. Of the 8 different classes of fine materials I talked about 7 of them and said I would discuss the 8th, piles of dust, another day. Well today is that day. I have earned enough skill points to run a number of conversions to attempt to find the average number of tier 6 dust gained from a single attempt at promoting a stack of tier 5 dust. 

Tier 1-6 Piles of Dust

The Formula


The formula for converting dust is a little different than the rest of the promotion formula. For starters you need to begin with a whole stack, 250, of the lower tier dust and you need to use crystals and philosophers stones. The formula for dust promotion is as follows;
  250 Piles of Tier X Dust
+ 1 Pile of Tier X+1 Dust
+ 5 Crystals
+ 5 Philosopher's Stones
= random # of Piles of Tier X+1 Dust
If that looks complicated do not worry it is not. Simply pick which dust you wish to promote. It will being anything from 1 through 5. This is the value of X in the above formula. If you wish to promote tier 5 dust to tier 6 dust, as I will in my trails below, than the formula you should use is as follows;
250 Piles of Incandescent Dust
+ 1 Pile of Crystalline Dust
+ 5 Crystals
+ 5 Philosopher's Stones
= random number of Piles of Crystalline Dust
The mystic forge, loaded and ready to go to convert
250 Incandescent Dust into a random number of Crystalline Dust


My Trails


For my trial I had 4250 Piles of Incandescent Dust which I converted into Piles of Crystalline Dust. Each attempt costs 5 crystals and 5 philosophers stones or in other words 3.5 skill points. The cost of 250 Piles of Radiant Dust is 62.5 silver or 25 copper each. Here are my results,
4250 Piles of Incandescent Dust
+ 17 Pile of Crystalline Dust
+ 85 Crystals
+ 85 Philosopher's Stones
= 341 Piles of Crystalline Dust
Removing the Piles of Dust required for the recipe leaves us with 324 piles of Crystalline Dust. Averaging this out results in about 19 piles of dust per pull. I would be able to sell my Crystalline Dust for about 5.66 silver each at the moment. Selling each Crystalline Dust for 5.66 silver I would take 107.5 silver on average per attempt before trading post fees. After the fees I would have revenue of  91.4 silver. Taking into account my costs (62.5 silver per pull) I would make on average 28.9 silver per pull or in other words 8.25 silver per skill point.

The most common result on promoting Incandescent Dust.

We can generalize the profit formula for converting dust as follows;
Profit = (A * 0.85 * X) - (250 * B)
  where,
    A = Current Sale price of Crystalline Dust
    B = Current Purchase price of Incandescent Dust

    X = # of Crystalline Dust per 250 Incandescent Dust
This formula merely needs you to go to the Trading Post and fill in the values for A and B. Than if my trials are to show anything you will average roughly 19 Crystalline Dust for each stack of 250 Incandescent Dust. If you are doing smaller trails than you could end up with more or less. The most I gained from a single attempt was 38, where as the least I gained from a single attempt was 10 (here are the raw numbers, 14, 34, 15, 20, 12, 18, 17, 38, 10, 13, 15, 18, 15, 21, 33, 18, 13). If you wish to determine your profits per skill point divide the above formula by 3.5 as that is the number of skill points needed per attempt.


Conclusions


As you can see from just comparing the two articles promoting dust is no where near as profitable as converting the other fine crafting materials. If you are looking to purely make gold from your skill points, thus far, the best option is to promote the most expensive tier 6 fine crafting mat from its tier 5 mat. I hope you found this discussion of promoting of dusts interesting even if it did not end up as being a profitable venture.

I have still not tried converting Cores into Lodestones to see if there is profit there; however, since there is no random amounts involved in the Core or Lodestone promotion I will be able to simply do the math to determine the profits from those conversions. I will write this article up later in the week and then follow up next week with a general article on converting Skill Points into gold.

Promoting T5 Fine Crafting Mats

If you read my article on obtaining Mystic Clovers then you know I am working towards crafting the legendary sword, Bolt. Today marks another milestone in my quest towards this sword. I have obtained all my Tier 6 fine crafting mats. I got some from the Trading Post, some from farming, but most I obtained by promoting Tier 5 crafting mats in the mystic forge. For a number of the T6 mats this is the most cost effective way of obtaining the materials. It is also a great way to convert your extra skill points into gold. Today I would like to review the options open to you for promoting materials, as well as, sharing my experiences.

Tier 5 on left, Tier 6 on right.
The list of Tier 5 Fine Crafting Material is as follows; Vial of Potent Blood, Large Bone, Large Claw, Pile of Incandescent Dust, Large Fang, Large Scale, Intricate Totem, and Potent Venom Sac. Each of these materials has a corresponding material for each of Tiers 1 through 6. For example, the corresponding Tier 6 materials are as follows; Vial of Powerful Blood, Ancient Bone, Vicious Claw, Pile of Crystalline Dust, Vicious Fang, Armored Scale, Elaborate Totem, and Powerful Venom Sac. If you are interested in viewing the other tiers check GW2 Hub's article on fine materials, or open the collections tab at your bank in game and scroll down to Fine Crafting Materials.

All of the Tier 5 materials can be converted into their corresponding Tier 6 material via a Mystic Forge recipe. There are two recipes, one for the Piles of Dust, and one for the other seven materials. Today, I am just going to deal with the seven core materials, and I will talk about the dust when I have more data on the conversion rates. The formula for promotion is as follows;

  50 tier X fine material
+ 1 tier X+1 fine material
+ 5 tier X+1 Dust
+ X Philosopher's Stones
= random amount of Tier X+1 materials

If this looks complicated, do not worry. Firstly, Philosophers Stones are purchased from the merchant  beside the Mystic Forge named Miyani. Secondly, in the above formula, X, represents the tier of the material you want to promote from. Thus, if you want to promote from Tier 5 to Tier 6, X would equal 5 and the formula would be as follows;

  50 tier 5 fine material
+ 1 tier 6 fine material
+ 5 tier 6 Dust
+ 5 Philosopher's Stones
= random amount of Tier 6 materials

You can do the same for any tier material from tier 1 through 5. If you are looking to make a legendary, an ascended back piece, an infusion, or make gold than promoting tier 5 materials is the way to go. The cost of the dust is going to make other conversions costly, and your limited amount of skill points would be better spent promoting tier 5 materials. Today I did a number of promotions to obtain the last of my T6 Totems, Sacs, and Bloods. Here are my results;

  1750 Intricate Totems
+ 35 Elaborate Totems
+ 175 Crystalline Dust
+ 175 Philosophers Stones
= 234 Elaborate Totems (+199 Totems or 5.7 / pull)

For this transaction my costs were 14 gold for the Intricate Totems (~80 copper each), and 9 gold for the dust (~5 silver each). After taking into account the Elaborate Totems used in the recipe I am left with 199 more Elaborate Totems than I started with. These should easily sell for 29 gold (~17 silver each) after posting fee. All in all that is a 6 gold profit or 34 silver per skill point.

  1000 Vials of Potent Blood
+ 20 Vials of Powerful Blood
+ 100 Crystalline Dust
+ 100 Philosophers Stones
= 147 Vials of Powerful Blood (+127 or 6.4 / pull) 

Breaking this down into costs for Potent Blood, 8 gold (~80 copper each), and the dust, 5 gold (~5 silver each). Revenue on the 127 Powerful Blood works out too 15.7 gold (~14.5 silver each) after trading post fee for a profit of 2.7 gold or 27 silver per skill point.

  1000 Potent Venom Sacs
+ 20 Powerful Venom Sacs
+ 100 Crystalline Dust
+ 100 Philosophers Stones
= 166 Powerful Venom Sacs (+146 or 7.3 / pull)

Breaking this down into costs for Potent Venom Sacs, 8 gold (~80 copper each), and the dust, 5 gold (~5 silver each). Revenue on the 146 Powerful Venom Sacs works out too 19.9 gold (~16 silver each) after trading post fee for a profit of 6.9 gold or 69 silver per skill point.

Now, my savings in terms of making these T5 Mats vs buying them on the Trading Post is actually higher as the TP fees would be included in the cost to purchase. Thus, I saved 26.6 gold promoting these materials over buying them from the trading post, where as if I were doing this for profit I would have made 15.6 gold or 42 silver per skill point. I averaged 6.3 Tier 6 Fine Materials for every 50 Tier 5 Materials put into the forge, or 12.6 per skill point. We can generalize a profit formula from these statistics. In general it would be;

Profit = (A * 0.85 * X) - (B * 50) - (C * 5)
   where,
      A is the sell price of the T6 mat on TP
      B is the buy price of the T5 mat on TP
      C is the buy price of Crystalline Dust on the TP
      X is the # of T6 mats received per 50 T5 mats

The above formula can be used to get a rough idea of the profit you will make from promoting a particular material. Promoting materials offers a slight gamble, but in general this is going to be a gamble between a small profit and a larger profit. If you do some math before you make your purchases you should be able to determine whether you will profit or not. I personally use a conservative estimate of 6 for the value of X. Since each try takes 5 philosophers stones, and 10 stones are 1 skill point you can multiply the results of the above formula by 2 to determine your profit per skill point.

In the future I hope to compare this to using Cores to make Lodestones as well as dust promotion. All offer good chances at turning a profit for those unused skill points. Then, I will make a spreadsheet to let you enter TP prices to determine best skill point to gold conversion. Let me know how this works out for you.