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  1. #1
    US-Drenden(A)
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    Thumbs up How to: Create and Sell Profession Kits

    This was originally posted in the Wind Trader's Stormspire on 19th "November 2010. Moving it into the public forums for greater benefit and just an interesting/insightful read. - Sinshroud.

    Selling Profession Leveling Kits Guide

    By: Namssob


    This idea has been tossed around by many people, and I've heard of some people actually doing it. So back in the middle days of Wrath of the Lich King, I started my own profession leveling kit business, and HOLY SMOKES why did I wait so long to do it?! Not only is it a profitable venture, but it is a lot easier to do than you think. There are some tricks and tips I'd like to share with anyone considering doing this. There are some pitfalls, but overall it's a great way to turn farming time or even great AH deals into something meaningful, and great profits.


    What is a profession leveling kit?

    A "profession leveling kit" is simply a collection of all the materials needed to level a profession from level 1 to max level. I started doing these near the middle/end of Wrath of the Lich King, so 450 was the max profession level. For example, for Jewelcrafting, every gem, ore, bar, or other materials needed are included in the kit. The ONLY thing the buyer needs to get are the trainable recipes from the profession trainer. The same applies to Alchemy, except the buyer would need to purchase about 300g worth of [Crystal Vial]s.

    So MOST OF THE TIME a person who buys your kit can literally stand next to the trainer (if they had the bag space), and level their profession from 1 to Max in less than an hour! (I say "most of the time" because some Max Level professions require the use of certain cooldowns. So in these cases, it may requires waiting 1-3 days to complete the use of those CD's).


    How does it work?

    In essence, you farm or buy all the mats (using a leveling guide), store them in a bank, and advertise the kit. When you find a buyer, they use an alt to join your guild with the kit, they pay you the selling price, you give them access to the tab(s) with the mats, and they take it all out. Done deal!


    Why does it work?

    Time is money, friend! Sure, anyone can farm or even buy their way to a max profession. However:
    • MANY of the mats needed are not available on the AH, or in less QTY than you need.
    • Mats on the AH are outrageously priced - 1 Golden Sansam for 10g. No thanks.
    • Mats are difficult to find - Transmute materials for the top end of Alchemy aren't always easy to find, and in some cases a CD is needed.
    • Far away! Goden Sansam is an example - a small number of nodes exist throughout Hellfire Peninsula, but you need enough of them that it takes forever.


    So, people are willing to pay for something to save them time and energy to farm it themselves. I hesitate to call it laziness, because in many cases it's not laziness, just expediency. Personally, I have plenty of time to level a profession, but I have bought my way to multiple max professions and I'm happy for doing it that way.


    Why bother?

    Uh...it's profitable? ;-)

    Seriously, this isn't like buying a rare pet and flipping it for 1000%. Those situations are VERY nice, but they are not easily repeatable by everyone.

    Before the most recent patches, here's how it played out. If you wanted to level Alchemy (without any Mastery), you could buy all the items you needed for about 2500g. Now, you wouldn't be ABLE to buy it all because it simply would not be available, but that would have been the cost (not including the empty vials). or look at it this way, if you farmed all the mats - the selling price for the bottom 10-15% of the market price for all of them would bring in about 2500g.

    In Wrath, I sold my Alchemy kits for 5k. In Cataclysm my price was 12k (including inflation, and the additional mats). In MoP, my prices have been 12-15k. That is about DOUBLE my investment. In reality, I get my mats MUCH cheaper. I have farmers who help me, I keep my eye out for special deals, and my business has grown enough that I've hired out some of the farming. But in general, you can expect to make 50-100% profit on one kit.

    OK - so I've convinced you to try this....


    How to do it RIGHT!

    Ok, so the basics above will get you started. But what will keep you going - and what will help you get customers willing to pay DOUBLE the price for the mats (and trust me, many people will point this out to you!) - is that extra "touch" that makes the business a real business. If you go out of your way to make the kits professional in nature, easy to obtain, and position yourself as a trustworthy broker, you will continue to sell kits over and over again. Personally, I have sold MANY kits in multiple professions. I have numerous return customers. I even have the GM of a large guild buy multiple kits from me for his guildies and his guild in general.
    1. USE A GUIDE. I don't care which guide you use, but base your kit on a published and reputable leveling guide. I know there are several guide writers on these forums, so I won't point you to one specifically. If you don't do this, the buyer only has to mess up ONE thing, and the kit will stall somewhere along the line.

    2. Create a Spreadsheet to keep track of the guide items, and what you've gathered so far. Here is an example of what I use:


      The spreadsheet SHOULD be self explanatory, and I would be happy to make this available to anyone who wants it via Google Docs if you'd like to copy it, I have no problem with that. Also, ask me questions if you don't understand something about it.

      * UPDATE: Check THIS LINK our from Consortium Member @Lodimas. It's an automated spreadsheet using data from TUJ, and it works pretty well!


    3. Use an alt in a separate guild bank. Obviously this is necessary to organize the mats. Organize the mats in the guild bank tab EXACTLY as they are needed to level. This is key for TWO reasons, first, it helps YOU make sure you have everything, and second, it makes it easy for your potential buyer to verify the kit.

    4. Guild RANKS. (repeated from above) IN your guild, you will need very specific ranks to keep this safe, especially if you work on multiple kits at a time as I do:
      • GM Rank
      • ALL-ACCESS (<-- rank for any of YOUR alts)
      • ...(other ranks, NOT necessary and DANGEROUS)
      • 3-FullAccess
      • 2-FullAccess
      • 1-FullAccess
      • 3-ViewOnly
      • 2-ViewOnly
      • 1-ViewOnly
      • NO-ACCESS


      *NOTE: Recent WOW Patches changed the way promotions work. In Wrath and earlier, promotions were "linear" - a player would be promoted THROUGH each rank until they got to the rank desired. This was dangerous because for a split second (lor longer if you were slow or messed up), a player would have access to a bank tab that they should not have access to. GREAT NEWS - that is NO LONGER the case! From cataclysm forward, any promotions / demotions will move the player directly to that rank without traversing through another rank.

    5. Go get the mats! Farm, buy, prospect, smelt, whatever is the CHEAPEST and EASIEST way to get the mats. In my spreadsheet, I kept track of this in the right hand column. For buying, I had a set price ceiling, above which I would farm or hire out the farming for those mats. Don't be afraid to farm. Some mats may need to be farmed. Buying mats from the AH also has a secondary effect - if there is a limited supply it also makes it harder for competition or your buyers to buy the mats they need for the kits. ;-) Pay attention to alternate methods to acquire mats. For example, [Moss Agate] is a DIFFICULT mat for JC kits, and you need a lot of them (30 usually, although I found a way to use less - PM me for details!). But - [Tin Ore] prospecting has a terrific drop rate for [Moss Agate], [Shadowgem], and a couple other items you need.

    6. Create Macros. If you do this right, you will get more whispers than you can handle. You will need a few:
      • Spam macro: "Selling Profession Leveling kits. 1-Max Level, PST!"
      • Price Macro: "JC kit costs 12k", "Alchemy kit costs 15k", etc. <-- use this to respond to "How much?"
      • Explanation Macro: "A pre-farmed set of all the mats you will need to level <profession> from 1 to Max Level, guaranteed." <-- use this to respond to "What do mean by kit?"
      • Anything else you find yourself answering all the time - make a macro for it. But KEEP IT BRIEF.
      • BE BRIEF in your Trade spam. I started out with a long-winded explanation of what the kit is, why you need it, and how much it costs. This is BAD! It makes you look like gold seller spam, will get you ignored, and people will whisper you anyway with, "What is it?", or, "How much?". So keep it simple. I used this simple spam: "Selling Profession Leveling kits, 1-450. PST.". That's it.


    7. ADVERTISE ON THE REALM FORUMS! Create a professional sounding advertisement - and post it on your realm forums.
      • This increases your business - people who don't read Trade will read your forum post.
      • I actually used my MAIN to post this. Posting from your MAIN gives your business legitimacy. You will be attacked to a degree by disbelievers, or people claiming you are a scammer. Point them to your realm post, from your MAIN, and you will cut down on the naysayers. This will NOT work if your main is a jerk on your server. Another reason to have a good reputation.
      • This forum thread is the perfect venue for references...read on....


    8. BRAND YOURSELF! I created a spamming alt named "Kitseller". This makes it easy for people to know who you are, while associating your name with your business. Spamming from your main COULD work, but names like "Ikillufast", as cool as they sound, don't have anything to do with selling kits. Also, don't use stupid names. I started out spamming from an old alt I created named "Gangstanoob".... big mistake.

    9. GUARANTEE your kits. Yes, you need to GUARANTEE that your kit will get the buyer form 1 to 450. There can be no question at all, or else you will not be trusted, you will cause undue farming or buying at the AH that your kit was meant to eliminate. So - to do this, add "extra" mats where there could be bottlenecks in skill-ups (you will see how I've done this if you look at the spreadsheet). I also personally offer every buyer my "Max Guarantee" - if they end up short on any mat, anywhere in the skill-up process, I will go get the mat for them FREE OF CHARGE. Look, they paid for the KIT, so I want to make sure it works. I have flown all over Blizzard's creation looking for nodes of Netherbloom or Arthas' Tears just to get 1 or 2 for a buyer, when none were available on the AH.

    10. Hire a SALES TEAM! Ok - what do I mean by this? Pay a FINDERS FEE! Yes - this was an AMAZING idea I had and it paid off. I offered ANYONE who brought me a paying customer 10% of the sale. So if Person A brought be buyer B, and buyer B paid me 5k for a kit. I would then take 10% of that (500g) and hand it to person A. Half of my business over the past 2 months was brought to me by eager referrers wanting a quick 10% "commission".

    11. Give a DISCOUNT for repeat business. I offer a 10% off price to ANY repeat buyer. This works. I have had people buy FOUR (4) kits from me for different alts. I have also had a Guild GM contact me, and buy MULTIPLE KITS for his guild to use to level professions.

    12. Offer FREE BAGS! That's right! Most buyers are using newly created alts with NO bag space. So what I do is put 4 Netherweave Bags in the kit. When they come in with a newly created alt with no bag space, they get it for FREE! it's not enough for the entire kit, but they are mailing it all anyway. SO it allows them to make 2-3 trips and mail everything. If they don't need the bags, I take them out.

    13. WARNING: Advanced Tactic: Create Bottlenecks That's right! This can be dangerous, so be SMART, be SELECTIVE, and be ACTIVE. Basically, this concept is to CONTROL the entire market for a small number of required mats. OWN IT. In essence, you are either making it very costly for buyers to NOT use your kits, or convincing them that it would be easier to do so. I'll use [Moss Agate] as an example. When I started kits, [Moss Agate] was in the 1-2g range. I am usually successful in keeping (a) the price of [Moss Agate] to 15g or above, and (b) making sure there are very FEW [Moss Agate] on the AH. So what, Namssob! I'll just go buy Tin Ore! Well good for you, but I also buyout Tin Ore almost every time I see it in large quantities. With Tin Ore at 2g and higher, and [Moss Agate] at 15g and higher, it becomes awfully expensive to get 30 of them.

    14. TOP-SECRET: Advanced Tactic: Nutty Recruit! I have shared this information NOWHERE ELSE. I use an outdated addon called "NuttyRecruit". It was originally developed as a Guild Recruitment tool. But I "tweaked" it to work for my kit business. basically, it auto-spams trade at your desired interval (say, 5 minutes) with your advertisement. But the BEAUTY of this addon is that is will AUTO-RESPOND to inquiries. You setup "keywords", and the subsequent auto-responder. So the words "price" and "how much" are linked to a pricing macro. I use the "kitinfo" keywork to send an initial explanation. I have a few others I use also.

      You WILL get people claiming you are a bot - but a simple reply and friendly conversation back to them will eliminate those fears.

      NOTE: I have tried to get in touch with the guy who wrote NuttyRecruit, without success. This addon will eventually not work, but for now, it still works.




    The Transaction

    OK - so you have a buyer. Now what?

    1. They need a guild-less alt. This is required, since they will need to join your "kit guild"

    2. Guild RANKS. (repeated from above) IN your guild, you will need very specific ranks to keep this safe, especially if you work on multiple kits at a time as I do:
      • GM Rank
      • ALL-ACCESS (<-- rank for any of YOUR alts)
      • ...(other ranks, NOT necessary and DANGEROUS)
      • 3-FullAccess
      • 2-FullAccess
      • 1-FullAccess
      • 3-ViewOnly
      • 2-ViewOnly
      • 1-ViewOnly
      • NO-ACCESS

    3. Invite the buyer into your kit guild. They should be at the lowest rank, NO-ACCESS. This is a good thing. If your kit is in Tab 1, you then promote them to 1-ViewOnly. This allows them to VIEW the tab and check it for accuracy (and truthfully this is just a comfort / warm-fuzzy step - you already know the tab is accurate but they don't). Tell them the name of the guide they need to use and they might even check it for accuracy. Let them!

    4. Pause!. I wait here. No pressure. If they want a kit, they will buy it. If they're just tire kicking or messing with you, they'll either /gquit, or just ask stupid questions, or offer you 1k and a pet rock for the kit. I /gkick them at this point. But be patient. And also by waiting and not pressuring them into the transaction, it helps to assure them you're not a greedy scammer. And if they balk at the price, talk to them a little. But if they eventually don't want the kit, no problem. "Thanks for looking - I'll always be selling kits, so when you're ready, just whisper me her or on my main toon!"

    5. GET PAID FIRST. This is non-negotiable for me. Buyer pays first, full price, up front, through Trade. If they're not willing to do this, encourage them to go read the forums or talk to your references. Also remind them that since all the terms have been typed out in CHAT, it is enforceable by Game GM's - YOU would be banned, and they would get ALL their gold back. This should be enough. If it's not, let them know they can go think about it - you are in no hurry.

    6. PROMOTE THEM. After you receive the funds - immediately promote them up to the 1-FullAccess guild rank (or the Tab their kit is in - be careful not to click too much!)

    7. Reassure them. Tell them you will keep them in the guild as long as they need to be to get the items out. Remind them to get the four free BAGS to give them the extra slots they need for transporting the kit to the mailbox, or a bank.

    8. GET REFERENCES! Tell them you have three special requests....
      • POST a "thank you" response on the realm forums as a reference, so people will know this is a legitimate operation
      • CONTACT me or my main, directly, if they are missing any mats - so I can get them replacements (FREE, of course!)
      • TELL YOUR FRIENDS! If you bring me a paying customer, you will get 10% of the sale as sales commission.



    Profession Selection

    • Stick to professions that are four things:
      • In Demand
      • Profitable
      • Easy to create <-- probably the MOST important factor
      • Easy to store & organize

      (I will include what *I* charged for each kit, just so you know - but be careful with this - I worked hard to keep my prices as secret as possible, to eliminate preconceived notions of the kits, and also in case I needed to negotiate.
      • I have found [Jewelcrafting] to be the profession that fits all four of the above criteria, with [Alchemy] coming in at a close 2nd. They are both in high demand, they are both very profitable (mats+time to gather+time to sell > revenue), the mats for both kits are usually easy to obtain via AH or farming, and they both require less than 1 full bank tab for a complete kit, plus extras, plus free bags. JC is faster to create and the mats are easier to find than Alchemy, so JC is my primary focus, with Alchemy being secondary. I almost always have 2 JC kits in stock, and I only ever work with one Alchemy kit at a time. But I have multiple bank tabs full of "spare" mats for creating the next kit, and fulfilling my promise to give them away free if someone needs some.

      • [Tailoring] is a far 3rd. It requires quite a bit of cloth, which is easy to find - but the overall cost is less, demand is much less, and the ROI is not nearly as nice as JC or Alchemy. But it IS profitable, just more of a hassle I've found.

      • [Leatherworking] - ouch. I tried these, and I did sell a few. Although they can be profitable, a complete LW kit takes FOREVER to farm or even buy mats for, and takes up 203 slots - that's 2+ bank tabs (thank you, 1700+ Borean Leather). Based on farming time, I don't think it's worth it.

      • [Blacksmithing] is probably next - but the availability of mats, or time to farm them is not good. Also the pricing of this kit is a little higher and out of some folks range.

      • [Engineering] (? - didn't bother to try this one) - no thanks. WAY too complicated, and frankly the mats to level this at the highest end are over priced and complex IMO. *UPDATE: I get ASKED about Engineering more than any other kit. I have contemplated starting it up, but haven't yet. My belief is that BECAUSE it's a complicated and "strange" profession to level, people PREFER kits just to avoid the complexity of it. If anyone has had success with ENG kits, post something about it please!

      • Everything else is just either not worth it, or can't be done.


    • One note about [Alchemy] - back in Wrath, I also provided a "Mastery" version of the kit for more gold. The easiest mastery to get at the time was [Transmutation Master], so I also provided the four [Primal Might]s (along with [Recipe: Transmute Primal Might], just for kicks) for an additional fee. About half of my Alchemy kit customers bought this. If they ask for a different Mastery, they can easily switch to another for 150g. Since MoP, this has changed and Transmutation Master now requires four (4) [Living Steel]. I have not included these in any kits yet.



    Final Thoughts

    • All said and done, I'm disappointed I didn't start selling these kits MUCH sooner. They are easy to make, a great gold maker, and I actually enjoy doing them. Plus, as strange as it may sound, it's really helping my server and I feel my personal reputation in the game has increased a great deal once people know I'm not scamming them.

    • Work on multiple kits at a time. Have one completed and being advertised, while you work on the next one.

    • DO NOT put too much credence in "pre-orders" unless they pay you a down payment. I was burned multiple times by people promising to buy a kit, so I made extras, then they backed out. I know I could sell them, it just took longer.

    • Be willing to negotiate, but not too much. Some of my BEST deals were when I accepted traded items in lieu of gold, i.e., raw gems, [Primordial Saronite], etc. Mainly because I UNDERVALUED those items, but not too much, and I would make even more gold. I sold one JC kit to a guy for half cash, and the other half in other valuable items that I ended up selling for MORE gold.

      Be willing to say NO also. Most folks who offer me "Awesome Pet worth 50k!!" don't realize I'm simply more educated than they are about the market, and frankly, their pet is really worth only 5k. So my typical (and very friendly) response is thus: if your pet is worth that, I would prefer you just sell it for the 50k.....then give me my 12k for the kit, and you keep the difference!. They almost always back out at the point. And it's true - if the incredibly valuable item they are offering you is truly in demand, they should be able to sell it easily and then pay you in gold. If they are unwilling to do this, it MIGHT be a sign that the item is really lame and nobody wants it (including YOU!).
    Last edited by Namssob; January 16th, 2013 at 01:56 PM.
    How To: Create And Sell Profession Kits ---- MoP Shuffle Flowchart ---- Article: A Case For Dual Gathering
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  2. #2
    US-Kel'Thuzad(A)
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    Pretty cool! Never thought of making a bank for the sole purpose of displaying the goods. If nothing else, this sounds like fun. When my banks clear up I might start doing this.

    Glad to have you onboard.
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  3. #3
    US-Deathwing(A)
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    Great guide, I enjoyed it! This might be something I try in the future as right now I am like at max capacity on bank and guild bank slots. I have done something similar in that I found several reputable tradeskill leveling guide (www.tarouwowguides.com is pretty decent) and basically added every single item used to level all of the tradekills into my snatch list (I did this on a new bank alt with a 4 slot guild bank) And used this character to buy anything and everything used to level the tradeskills. A couple months back I would resell them all at 50-100% markup ignoring people who undercut me, and I made quite a bit of gold from doing that! A lot of people leveling tradeskills typically buy out the entire AH despite the price. Right now I am just anxious to unload all of this tradekill leveling for cataclysm.

    One small suggestion for your guide, possibly note somewhere that it would be suggested to have access to the gathering professions used in the kits you are selling so you can properly guarantee your kit because someone like me dropped gathering professions years ago :P

  4. #4
    EU-Terokkar(A)
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    This is a fascinating idea that I've heard banded about before in numerous blogs but never seen it explained in so much detail. Thanks.

    I for one have a lot of bank space (or will have once I've sold off my stockpile) and could see this turning into an interesting way to make money. I wonder if it would increase one's competition and hurt profits in the long run as players find it easy to quickly level a profession if they are willing to absorb the initial expense? I suppose in these days of lots of rich folks, they would just buy the mats anyway and still be a competitor so there's no harm done.

  5. #5
    US- Saurfang(A)
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    Thank you so much for sharing! This is awesome. Once Cataclysm comes out and everything is a bit more clear with professions, I might give this a go. If you're going to have people competing with you in markets, you may as well make a profit from them leveling, and this is a very creative way of doing so.
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  6. #6
    US-Malorne(H)
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    Thank you for going into such great detail. I've been considering the idea of selling profession kits for quite some time now. This may be the final nudge to get me on board.

    I have experience in a very similar but somewhat limited market selling rep kits. You can get away with an outstanding mark-up on rep kits, but the customers are definitely few and far between. As long as there are customers, though, it is certainly worth doing.

  7. #7
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    This was originally posted in the Wind Trader's Stormspire on 16th "November 2010. Moving it into the public forums for greater benefit and just an interesting/insightful read. - Sinshroud.
    If someone makes a helpful post or useful thread, be sure to let them know by giving +reputation. Spread the love!

    If you are new to gold making, or want to expand your markets for greater profits, then consider becoming an Ethereal Contributor to gain access to additional guidance on gold making, as well as our private dedicated help and support forum.

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  8. #8
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    Thx for opening this idea to us!

    After powerleveling three alchemist chars within the last few weeks, exactly this idea came to my mind too. Though, i was way too lazy to farm stuff myself and in addition, i was short of gbanks anyway, so i forgot that idea again since it didn't look this profitable to me. But when you say that it works fine for you, i guess i gotta try it once or twice on my server too.

    Just a hint from my side: If you're in a guild with level 14+ with the "Working overtime"-guild perk, you can even reduce the mats cost for you. There are some stumbling blocks, especially during the BC-leveling skills (at least for alchemy), where the following steps (only examples) could provide you a bigger profit:

    Skill 310 - 325: Flask 1, 15x cheap mats
    Skill 325 - 330: Flask 2, 5x very expensive mats (expensive in AH or very time-expensive to farm because the mats are spread-out)
    Skill 330 - 350: Flask 3, 20x cheap mats

    Thx to the guild perk, even though on the edge from yellow to green, a skill still gives you at least 2-3 100% skill points. So you can in fact use Flask 1 from 310 - 327 by creating it 17-18 times, then you create only 3x the expensive Flask 2 and you're up to Flask 3 again.

    I used wowberufeguide.de (german page) and kept changing it to my own way when i finished leveling my third alchemist. Still gotta work a bit on it, but next alchemist is coming soon and i guess i could upload it then. Maybe it helps. I saved myself couple of 100g thx to the guild perk (buying all stuff off the AH).
    Milestones: 10.02.2011: 100k / 09.06.2011: 500k / 21.07.2011: 750k / 10.08.2011: Goldcap! / 28.03.2012: GBank at goldcap - 2 million fluid!
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  9. #9
    US - Burning Legion (A/H)
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    This sounds like fun! I always love "different" ways of gold making like this and the Dense Stone Shuffle (my favorite time of the month ). I cant wait to get home and take a crack at it. I just cleaned up my guild bank to so i might not even need another alt!I highly recommend using www.wow-professions.com. It has a mat list at the very begining of the guide to make it easy, and it already has extra mats added in for not getting a level in the yellow/green range.

    EDIT: This is another great reason to camp Lhara when the DMF comes to town. She sells herbs/leather in limited supply (up to 4-5) with a ~20 minute respawn.

    EDIT2: Gonna take a crack at making a first aid leveling kit, just out of curiosity. Will repot back with updates
    Last edited by Tangster; July 12th, 2011 at 09:56 AM.

  10. #10
    US-Drenden(A)
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    Thanks! The kits are in full force again in Cataclysm. I am selling 1-2 per week, depending on how much I advertise, and how much I'm on. It helps to have a second account so I can PLAY while I make deals on the side.

 

 
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