OK so I’ve seen a lot of variously negative comments about the gleam farming boom over the last couple of days, and I’m getting a number of questions about what’s going on at the back end.
From my perspective, I decided to see a couple weeks ago if I could pay gleam farmers a decent price, churn out some solid experience while I was building, and not go negative in the coin department.
Here’s a rambling jumble of info for you all
Last night I managed to fully queue the entire refinery I’ve built at Serpensarindustries. This is 120 machines. I did some checking to verify that the cost/spark reduction for coils on a zero-power craft tops out at 16 coils, so each of these machines has 16 coils.
I could have packed them a bit tighter, but this makes the place a little more pleasant to be in, IMO, and also makes experience collection a little more controllable. It also has the negative of adding time to every part of the process, and we’re talking about hours and hours of time.
Last night I was using that portal you can see in the left of the screenshot to collect gleam from an offsite farm and load machines directly. Pushing them all to full queue this way was roughly two hours of work. There will be repairs to be done, and then gathering and minting the doors.
Based on last week’s work in my main factory, minting roughly 180k doors took me approximately 26 minutes alone, that’s after collecting them all, repairing the machines, and moving them to a single location for continuous minting. You can mint 2 stacks of doors before repairing the minter.
On the matter of coin
Loading all of these machines required 518,400 gleam. That’s 4,320 gleam per machine for a total of 3600 mass crafts. Processing time with coils maxed is 1 hour and ten minutes per mass craft for a wait time of exactly 35 hours.
Without level 3 spark and wear buff I would literally not be able to do this with the single set of spark generators currently installed here. The Super Spark and Wear guild buff costs 80k coins and roughly 5 character-weeks of endeavour per week.
9350 spark per mass craft with no buff
3600 batches would require 33,660,000 spark
3350 spark per mass craft with the level 3 buff.
3600 batches required 12,060,000 spark
This is the largest variable in the process
I’m going to pull some numbers out of @Mayumichi’s BUTT and say that based on soft coal prices, spark is currently marketing at about 2c per 100 spark.
- 673,200c spark cost unbuffed
- 241,200c spark cost with the maximum buff
These numbers together with the 518,400c for the gleam give us the following figures:
- 1.191.600c expenses for an unbuffed run
- 759,600c expenses for a buffed run
The output of 3600 mass crafts will be 180,000 plain gleam doors. These doors mint into a fully coiled chrysominter for 7c per door. This gives us a return of 1,260,000c for minting the doors.
- 68,400c net profit, before repair costs, unbuffed.
- 500,400c net profit, before repair costs, with the buff
A single topaz spanner should cover repair costs for the machines and the generators. Forged with additional damage removed it would cover a couple of runs.
I estimate it’s going to take me 4+ hours of time on task to finish this run. I’m hoping that when I do it with all of the gleam on site, it will take me closer to 3 hours. Time spent includes loading the machines, repairing and collecting the doors, and minting the doors.
For those who are doing this solo end to end it would also require time to harvest 518k raw gleam, and time to harvest/convert up to 33.6m spark depending on buffs.
On the matter of experience
This work is a lot more like rock/stone experience than cooking/smelting experience.
Plain gleam doors provide 1200xp, unbuffed, per mass craft. I ran the factory floor this morning, after having accidentally collected 98k earlier. This is the collection, using teaching pies, 12 hours into this 35 hour crafting process:
With max zeal and being careful not to collect a few refiners between pies, I intend to collect nearly 8,640,000 EXP from this run. That’s with roughly 4 hours of grind, 35 hours of processing time, and another expense of 15,400c for teaching pies at 350c per pie.
This process is tedious. Farming the gleam is more fun. And that gets boring fast.
It works as a semi-passive method of experience gathering, with effort requirements somewhere in between rock/stone/refined rock and mass smelting. Perhaps somebody with numbers on hand could help with a comparison.
If you are harvesting gleam and mining spark, making your own doors is a solid way to convert your efforts into coin. It won’t leave time for much else though, and it gets old rather quickly IMO, which is why I’ve never done much of it myself.
With buyers paying you 1c per raw gleam, however, harvesting raw gleam and dumping it into a buy basket is ‘the fun part of the process’ and also a decent way for a player to spend a couple of hours and grab a nice chunk of coin.
TBH a gleam farmer selling gleam into baskets at this price could be making more coins per minute (ignoring the processing time) than a buyer making doors out of the gleam.
For now, Serpensarindustries will stay in business. Some people have expressed concerns about nerfing. Some people are botting farms. This is the information I can provide regarding my personal setup, efficiency, and process here.
If this info helps lead to a rebalance it will be, I assume, for the devs’ perceived health of the game and I’m fine with that. If it helps other players reach decisions regarding time/value management, that’s great and it’s why I publish this stuff.