There are a few rules if you want to gold farm in Guild Wars. These are completely different from the rules in Guild Wars 2.
First you need to remember that the drops are divided among the members of the party, even heroes and mercenaries. So, the fewer members of the party there are, the better. There are “leechers” which are members of the party that stay far away from the action, and allegedly improve the drops. But they aren’t helping you kill mobs. So if you are solo farming, they aren’t useful. Do you have friends who don’t want to play, just stand around?
Second, you can employ pets and spirit helpers with no loot penalty. So a Ranger / Ritualist or a Ritualist/ Ranger seems like a good build to use for solo farming. Here’s the build that I use.
Update: What you really want to do however, if you are level 20 with strong heroes, is vanquish the area in hard mode. See below. But back to our story in Normal Mode.
So if you are going to kill solo, what level area should you use. I’ve seen a lot of mention of the area outside Rata Sum where you apparently solo farm raptors. Those are hard to kill. Even levels near Plains of Jarin where level 8-10 skales and corsairs abound are more difficult to farm solo with a tricked out solo R/Rt20. I prefer the lower level area.
The next things to consider are:
Is it a good idea to Identify blue items? It costs gold to buy the kits to do this, but you might make more gold on some items. Actually my experience indicates that these “Show me the value” items are so rare that using identification kits is not worth the money. At least in this area where I’m farming.
None of the other identification results seem to affect the sale value of the items.
It’s the same with Salvage Kits. It appears that there is no Gold Sale benefit to salvaging anything in this area unless you need the crafting items. The exception for this is Spider Web. The plentiful spiders in the area drop of alot of Spider Web and these convert at a very high rate to Bolts of Silk using Expert Salvage kits. So I’d save all the Spider Silk to convert it later for Elite Armor crafting.
Istani Keys drop at a fairly good rate in this area. Should you open the chests or just sell the keys for 40G. Well my research indicates that the sale rate of the weapons from the chests are 32G, so just sell the keys for 40G. That seems counter intuitive, but the weapon sale costs just don’t justify using the keys to get them. Just sell the keys.
As you make this round through the map:
Your bags will fill up. So near the end you’ll drop white weapons, that yield 2-4 G in favor of stackable items that yield 3-5G and you’ll favor blue items over white items. Also you’ll kill the four or so bosses and pick up any green items that they drop. The mandragors and termites tend to drop stackable items and the spiders drop their Spider Webs so be sure and hit those groups.
Start with a few plants as you start East from the portal. The first few mobs you kill don’t drop anything, but after 4-5 plants you can work on the roving spiders and then work your way to the first Stormseed Plant Boss.
If you are farming faction points for Norn or Sunspear or another faction, then you’ll work a larger group and pick an area such as Olafstead in the Eye of the North for Norn Points or a higher level area for Sunspear points. But if you are just farming gold, the drop rate and gold rate seems to be higher doing it this way. I make 300-400G per round and it only take a few minutes per round. I’m gaining about 1.6P per hour working solo in this area. At that rate it’s only another 35 hours to get the 75P for the Elite Canthan Armor for my Mesmer.
The drop rate has been high for dye too in this area, so I have enough Pink or Blue dye for the armor too when I have the funds.
Guild Wars [one] has no trading post so there is no place to sell crafting items for gold in a market. There is a rune and dye market, but the rates are hidden behind merchants with no real transparency to the market of other players.
In Guild Wars 2 I find that Lumbering, Mining and running Open World events, like Auric Basin, to salvage all the gear to sell materials on the Trading Post makes plenty of gold. But Guild Wars 1 is different. I’m a big fan of the new things in Guild Wars 2, but recently I’ve been bored with it and have come back to the nostalgia of Guild Wars.
Update: But in Guild Wars, hard mode provides much better rewards. I was surprised that there was such a large benefit. I assumed that the reduced drop rate of having to use a party would reduce the benefit. But I got about 5p from one vanquish run in hard mode. Here’s what I got when I vanquished the area in hard mode:
Be sure and take all the bounties for about 2000 Sunspear Rank points. Go left out of the Sunspear hall and take Plants, then around to the North and take Insects and then work your way over to the Astralarium Outpost exit and take Skale before killing any of those.
5p 100G in cash with a full group of 4 heroes, compared with 300G per run in Normal mode solo. This does include a lockpick drop which sells for 750G. You probably won’t get that every time. And like the Istani key in Normal mode, you won’t want to use the lockpick. No way there will be enough loot in chests to net you 750G. That pick might break at any time. But still this is a much better hall than doing the area solo in normal mode. And this is in spite of the fact that loot is reduced because you have a party. You get a chunk of cash just for vanquishing an area. About 1p for Plains and about 1.2p for Zehlon Reach, for example.
Also, you will want to Identify all of the Blue, Purple or Yellow items you pick up. I kept track and while it makes no difference in sale value for the low level items in Normal mode, these high level items sell for significantly more when identified. it costs 4G to identify each item, but the sales price increase was many times that for these items.
Here’s the skill bar I’m using on my R/Rt for this hard mode run.
Pain Inverter is helpful for the higher level foes.
Here’s the hardmode vanquish path when I was done.
Here’s my build and my heroes:
This is a modified Discord build with a Warrior with “Charge” so we can move around a lot faster in the map. You can look up Discord build on the wiki. Basically it takes advantage of the Discord Necro Elite Skill to do tons of damage to hexed or enchanted foes. Along with Discord, Livia is carrying a protection build and Master of Whispers is carrying a res skill.