Just because we are a bunch of staff volunteering our time at a fansite does not mean that we do not desire to "get rich quick" in RuneScape. Of course, if we knew how to do so, we would be lounging on our very own Ports vessels sipping cocktails instead of trying to not split infinitives. In light of my previous investigation of matters with money, it was decided I would be an ideal candidate to undertake another mission. It was with this intent that I was sent off on TWO (Tip.it Wealth Operation).
My first attempt was to go to the crowded trade worlds and see what people were buying and selling. Much to my surprise, I saw someone selling coal for 250gp and someone buying at 300gp. I had found my first merching opportunity! Unfortunately though, once I had bought it, the player buying had mysteriously disappeared. Now I held only coal and was left sadder than a child with no gifts at Christmas. I eventually managed to sell the coal, but unfortunately lost quite a bit doing it.
It seemed trading among players was too risky, as they just were not honest enough. One moment they were there, and the next they vanished into the abyss of people. Besides, I had already shouted myself hoarse and exhausted my supply of cough drops.
So next I observed Murky Matt at the Grand Exchange, as I knew he had some familiarity with it, having camped out constantly there every day since its release. He seemed to neither notice nor mind when I crouched near a shrub to observe. He was busy charting facts and figures of items he was buying and selling. It seemed a sensible process, but I thought there must be more underneath that enabled his success.
Suddenly he thrust his arms high over his head, pumping them in the air. "Yes, I'm in the money!" Some time later, I presume things turned somewhat south as he groaned, "Noo! Me prices, they be goin' down!" He seemed to be really into it, as if it were the difference between life and death. Since his life was trying to make money off Grand Exchange prices, could merching with the help of these impassioned emotions produce results?
There was only one way to find out, and I was ready to get started. I started to buy and sell items, but they were taking forever. So I acted on that impatience and jacked up the price until they would buy. Then said items would not sell, so I had to lower the price, eventually below what I bought for, until I panic sold them all. I thought perhaps I had just been unlucky, but after trying this a few times, I realized that this was not a profitable venture.
It was to this end that I pursued an interview with a very successful and wealthy individual known as Rake Itt Inn, who graciously agreed to my request.
I decided to get down to business and get straight to the facts. "Mr Inn, what is a mercher's greatest secret?"
"Well, a mercher's greatest secret is," leaning in closer to whisper to me, despite the room's vacancy save the two of us and the quiet scratching of my pen against the notepaper, "that he never gives out his greatest secret!"
As soon as I had put the words to paper, I looked up to the man, utterly confuzzled. It seemed to me that he had constructed a paradox. I continued to ask questions, but I could barely pay attention, and much less interpret any of his advice, if one could call it that.
I had exhausted my supply of ideas, but at least I had learned a few lessons. Offers from another player that seemed too good to be true probably were. Panicking and merching did not seem to mix very well. And there apparently was no simple secret or shortcut to wealth, even through merching. But still, there was one issue left unresolved: how to break the news of our lost assets to the rest of the Tip.It staff.
It was then that I hit upon one final idea. Maybe this merching thing was going about it all wrong after all. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and I've gabbed on for nearly that long, so I'm just going to let it speak for itself below.