A word on liquidity
Many may be familiar with the terminology, but to ensure that no one is held up by the term liquidity here’s the quick version. Any asset’s liquidity is a measure of how easily it can be converted into other assets, most commonly cash. In the context of Star Wars: The Old Republic there are a multitude of items with various degrees of liquidity. NPC vendors provide liquidity on most items, but typically at a bargain-basement price that is not attractive for many items. There are also items that NPC vendors will not purchase in game, which creates an additional hurdle. Commendations have a unique niche in the liquidity spectrum of the game, because they have cycles ranging from highly desirable currency to difficult to even monetize into credits at a reasonable exchange rate.
Their useful life was fairly brief and they are plentiful, so many end game players have no use for them presently but converting them to credits is both arduous and only moderately profitable. However, I stumbled across an option today that I had not seen before in the numerous conversations on Twitter or Reddit on this topic. The current best ideas are to send the commendations to alts via the refund process or to purchase gear with Basic Commendations and sell the gear back to an NPC vendor for credits. This requires either a waiting period or a weapon that a color crystal can be added to for the instant binding. These can be profitable, but the current best rate of conversion that I’ve found or seen cited specifically is only about 265 credits per Basic Commendation as outlined by /u/yolaretis in this Reddit thread. I have found an interesting additional option. I cannot claim to have found this intentionally, but I was perusing the reputation vendor on Makeb while passing through its orbital station. I had an alt that was leveled through the last 12x XP and never finished the Makeb story, but I’d like to complete it and have it out of my mission log! I noticed that the vendor was offering to sell a Vial of Stabilized Isotope-5 for 35 Basic Commendations and my interest was piqued. I pulled the month-to-date average price and quantity data from my database for this Grade 10 Exotic Crafting Material and here’s what I found:
Trust but Verify
As we all know all too well, just because you can list something on the GTN does not mean that it will sell, so I decided to test it out. I bought 10 and listed them on my home server (Jedi Covenant) near the lowest offer at the time and they sold within a couple hours. I have not been able to pinpoint the likely crafting uses of the material that would drive demand, but there seems to be a market for it on most servers and, as you can see above, there is higher credits per Basic Commendation return on most servers at their current average of daily lowest prices for April 2015. As with any commodity, there is a limit to how many people can gain excess profit in the same space, but the parity level with the current highest margin gear sale option occurs right around the price for Begeren Colony listed in the table above. If you can sell a Vial of Stabilized Isotope-5 for more than 10,000 credits on your server it is the highest credit value conversion for Basic Commendations that I’ve encountered yet.
There are a few feedback items that seem best crowd-sourced along this line of thought:
- Do you currently use Vial of Stabilized Isotope-5 for crafting and, if so, what do you use it to craft most often?
- Are there other vendors that sell rate materials that should be compared for relative viability?
- What are you using your Basic Commendations for currently if you are not looking to liquidate them to credits?
As always, thank you for reading and look for more quick analysis posts like this one in the near future as a target content type!
– Andrew | SWTOR Economics