#1 - Feb. 3, 2011, 9:48 p.m.
**Skip to the formated (bolded, underlined) portions if you want to get to the meat**
I've been doing nothing but leveling alts in Cataclysm and, more specifically, trade skills. I want 525 in every trade skill on my own account. That's my cata goal.
Due to this, I've noticed a pretty large discretion between pre-bc availability of certain goods. Some trade items are simply way too hard to obtain (even farming with an 85) and some of them are pretty crucial to leveling up one trade skill or another. This isn't even mentioning the fact that in order to make some of the gear you'd actually use from 1-60, you will need these items to craft some of them.
I'm sure that Blizzard had more important things on their plate to deal with when developing cataclysm than THE GHOST MUSHROOM PROBLEM, so I have been compiling a list of trade goods that they will hopefully consider fixing (if fixing them is an admission that they are broken, if not, they are working as intended?). Doing my part, the greater good, the lot of that fun stuff, etc. etc. etc.
Pre-BC and Now: they dropped in numerous areas including Mara and various outdoor zones that contained a cave of some sort. Currently they are only available (that I've found) as five nodes in Zangarmarsh (which is weird because by the time you're 60~ you probably won't need these anymore) and they are incredibly far apart from each other, and on a long respawn. The other is in Dire Maul: Warpwood Quarter. Nodes are semi-randomized in DM but there are generally about four if you do a full clear. You can only gather one mushroom per node.
Alchemy. Alchemists can get quite a few points leveling up making Ghost Dyes from the mushrooms.
Tailoring. Tailors (unless they want to use ridiculous amounts of bolts) need these to craft up from around 230~-300. If you cannot get the ghost dyes from an alchemist, you're going to have to make up for it with a lot more runecloth and other materials, such as rugged leather.
Suggested Fix: I would personally like to see them spawning in more caves out in the game world, places like Winterspring and Silithus, Un'Goro Crater. Higher-level areas. And maybe allow more than one mushroom to be gathered per node because you will need a lot of them for tailoring.
Pre-BC and Now: Felwood was bomb. Mobs in the demon camps would drop them not at a high rate, but at a reasonable rate, and other high-level zones with demons in them would drop as well. If you were lucky, you could grab one out of silithus. They also dropped from Dire Maul: Warpwood pretty frequently. Today, I've only found two sources for felcloth: the demon vendor that all of you archaeologists have seen in Winterspring (who has a chance to sell them, with two in stock, on roughly an hour-long respawn timer that can also spawn other items instead such as gromsblood) and in Dire Maul: Warpwood quarter. From my own experience, it is an incredibly poor droprate. After about ten runs I would net, on average, 0-3 per run. This really sucked because I was crafting the flarecore set for my wife's warlock.
Tailoring: Pretty damn handy to be able to get felcloth not only for skilling up tailoring but also to use what you are making when you level. If you are actually questing, then this set remains not too shabby. Maybe an upgrade. In addition to the felcloth patterns, there is also mooncloth which is an incredible way to get skill points in tailoring, particularly since they dropped the cooldown on making it. Poor moonwells.
Mooncloth is also a common ingredient for almost all of the high-end plvl300 tailoring patterns (epic BoEs mostly like the previously-mentioned flarecore set). It takes two felcloth to make a mooncloth. It can take up to ten mooncloth to make one of these items. It's harsh when you can only semi-reliably get them from one source.
Leatherworking: It's only used for one leatherworking pattern iirc so that isn't as big a deal.
Suggested Fix: Add them back to the drop tables where they were pre-bc. Felwood, most notably. This one is a bit more difficult because it requires demons. You get felcloth from demon drops, and then you either use it to craft gear or you purify it in a moonwell to craft mooncloth. This is particularly connected to lore and I wouldn't change that aspect of it, but it does need help. Maybe even add in a pattern for tailors so they can craft felcloth? I have no idea, honestly. This one is rough. Demonic Runes aren't as much as an issue, but I figured I would mention them along with the felcloth because they are used in tandem for many recipes. However, they are also hard to get for the exact same reasons as felcloth.
Flask of Mojo.
Pre-BC: Hinterlands, baby. Zul'Farrak as well. Due to the shattering and level changes, this is another incredibly frustrating mat to gather. Jin'Athlor (I think that's how you spelled it) was an excellent place to get this, particularly when the patch came down that made the mobs non-elite. The only place I have succesfully farmed this recently (since deathwing's hissyfit) is ZF, and that was an incredible amount of luck to get even one per full clear. I tried various troll areas in the plaguelands, even the graves you can bother outside of ZF and flying over the instance gate to kill the non-elites inside. Not a single drop.
Jewelcrafting. JC is painful enough to level without the added frustration of not being able to make aquamarine signets, which require an aquamarine and four flasks of mojo. Your alternates are less than salient choices and end up being incredibly expensive. This was one of the most frustrating skill areas out of any profession for me to level, due to this one drop. "umad bro?" you ask? Why yes, good sir, iMad. But seriously it really was frustrating and less than fun. I didn't even feel rewarded or relieved when I got beyond the point of needing them. Just bitter over how much time I wasted.
Suggested fix: This one is a little tricky because there are different tiers of mojo. There's only one type of felcloth, for instance, so if you had them drop off any demon level 35-60 then it wouldn't be an issue. However, if you tweak the drop tables on other troll mobs, then you are also changing all of the other mojo droprates, which is bad.
My solution? Really crank up the drop rate in ZF, which may spur people actually keeping some of them and not vendoring them as much to sell in the auction house. I couldn't even find any to buy and I was getting to the point where I was willing to buy them for quite a handsome penny. Maybe even put flavor text on it that says "Needed by Jewelcrafters". Outside of that, it's a tough problem.
Essence of Undeath.
Pre-BC: It was hard to not come out of a UDStrat run without five bags full of them, which was overkill. The situation has reversed today due to the lowering of the levels not only of the plaguelands themselves, but the two main sources of these essences: Stratholme and Scholomance. You can look up parsed data for people who made the vain attempt to farm these. You can go multiple runs in either dungeon, completely full clears, without seeing a single one of them. Going off of memory, they drop from undead mobs level 55-60 (estimated) and there aren't a lot of those types of mobs to go around anymore with the changes due to the shattering. They can still drop from live strat (confirmed it myself) but the droprate is impossibly low. I am not sure about scholo.
Enchanting, Blacksmithing, Tailoring, Engineering, Jewelcrafting. Engineering and Blacksmithing don't take nearly the hit that Tailoring, Jewelcrafting, and Enchanting do. The tailoring problem is the exact same problem as felcloth (and to compound the problem, many of the felcloth pieces also require these essences. They are crucial as mojos are for skilling up jewelcrafting, and they're great for enchanting weapons with unholy, which used to be a good alternative to gathering the frustrating eternals.
Suggested Fix: Tweak it so they can drop in scholo, strat, and the plaguelands, basically. Perhaps not to the extent that it did in vanilla, but the droprate does need some love. Or maybe even crank up the droprate for them in the undead village in Silithus (I've had no success farming them there).
Enchanting: We used to gather/farm for greens and use tailoring to get the 55-60 (ilvl 61~) pre-bc greens in order to get eternal essences and the dust that comes paired with it. However, due to the restrictive nature of tailoring and the fact that there is now only one instance that will give you these greens (U/LBRS) it has become even more difficult than before to obtain them.
However, "fixing" some of the droprates mentioned in this thread could very well alleviate some of the issues with enchanting mats, particularly with regards to tailoring and jewelcrafting. I wouldn't exactly suggest upping the droprate of greens that ilvl, but it does need some help. If these changes were to actually go live that have been proposed in this thread, then I would consider just monitoring them and see if they help to "trickle down" and alleviate the enchanting situation.
Because, man, it's frustrating as hell to gather the stuff right now, to be perfectly honest.
If you have any other trade goods to add to the list, then please post up with the relevant information.