Author - gumdrops

Announcing TSM 4.14 Beta Test!

As the launch of The War Within expansion draws near, we’re very happy to announce the Beta test of the 4.14 addon update to TradeSkillMaster! If you’re a Premium member you will shortly be receiving an email inviting you to participate, along with instructions on how to get started.

Additional invites through our Beta sign-up page will be distributed on a First-In-First-Out system, so make sure you sign-up if you’d like to get involved!

Let’s take a look at some of the major features 4.14 brings!

New Sniper Mechanism

Patch 8.3 in Battle of Azeroth changed the way the Auction House works fundamentally. Blizzard removed the concept of ‘pages’ and since then all items are essentially part of the same pool of auctions for a given realm or region.

This caused some changes to the sniper behaviour for TSM in Retail which deviates from the original style of sniping that’s available in Classic WoW. So to try and close that gap and improve the efficiency and capabilities of TSM Sniper in Retail, we have introduced some changes to the way the Auction House is queried during a Sniper scan. If you’re familiar with other Sniper-focused addons, such as Point Blank Sniper (PBS), TSM 4.14 will function in a similar way.

Additionally, in Retail you’ll be able to apply a Sniper Operation to the Base Group just like you can in Classic (or in Retail prior to WoW patch 8.3), allowing for Sniping of items that are not otherwise grouped.

Secondary Realm Market Data

After region-wide trading was introduced in Dragonflight, we have been exploring how we might enable easier arbitrage between realms without overloading the addon with data and consuming all of our bandwidth quotas.

As a first step in this arena we have added the option to display some Price Sources such as Minimum Buyout and Market Value from one other realm that you have added to your TSM Desktop Application in your Tooltip Settings.

We hope this will enable some arbitrage opportunities with a specific realm that you may have gold-making activity on – we understand that discovering and identifying those opportunities is important and we’ll continue to explore supporting that type of analysis outside of the game with our new and improved website suite coming soon.

Scroll Table Improvements

Scrolling tables make up a lot of the UI of TSM, such as the interfaces for Mail, Vendoring, most of the Auction House, and your profession window.

It can take a lot of resources to create and update these tables as new data is loaded or you take actions in the addon, so we’ve spent a lot of time working to significantly improve the performance of these elements across the TSM addon suite.

As well as performance improvements, we’ve added a ton of new functionality to these tables:

Drag Columns to Reorder them

Now you can reorganize the columns in any scrolling data table, such as at the Auctioning House or in your profession window.

Note the ‘item name’ column position cannot be changed, and column positions can be reset in the traffic light menu in the top left of any table.

From this menu you can now also enable to lock the width of columns in the table so that you don’t accidentally resize a column too wide or too narrow. Enabling this option will maintain the current width of all columns in the table.

Create a Group from items showing in a Scrolling Table

Making Groups is often a challenge, over the years we have taken steps to make that easier including the concept of the Base Group which contains any item that you don’t already have inside a Group, even if you don’t currently own the item.

We’re taking that a step further and adding the option to create a Group containing the items that you currently see in the table – whether that is a category selected in your profession window to group items you can craft or a search on the Auction House.

In this example the Auction House Browse tab is filtered by using the Advanced Item Search to look for the category of Tailoring Recipes. I can select ‘Create Groups from Table’ to add all of the items in the table to a new Group. Note that items that are already grouped are not added to the newly created Group.

Adding Prices or Sources as Custom Columns

A very common line of feedback when using TSM is to add more information to the UI in order to be better informed and make it easier to make decisions. We have to strike a balance between what is usable or understandable to someone who may be new to TSM and creating the flexibility to enter ‘data overload’ territory if it’s desired.

With TSM 4.14 we’re pleased to add the option to include any standard price or value source as a new column in any scrolling table, such as your Auctioning and Shopping Scan results, or Sniper Scan results. This is also extended to include any custom sources you have defined as a custom column. Simply select the traffic light menu in the top left of any scrolling table to manage which columns appear in the table.

In this example the number of the item currently owned (NumInventory) is included in the Browse results so I can decide whether I want to purchase more at-a-glance.

Learn more about the available Price Sources and Value Sources out-of-the-box in TSM, and find the perfect combination of information to support your gold-making strategy.

Post From Bags Improvements

The Post From Bags section in the Auctioning tab of the Auction House receives all of the previously mentioned upgrades, including adding Price Sources, and in addition has the new option to add which Group the item is in to the table. It’s easy to see at a glance what might be worth posting if you have limited time or are learning new markets as part of your gold-making strategy!

In this example the DB Recent value and the minimum price from the assigned Auctioning Operation are shown in-context before selecting and posting the items, along with the Group that the items are in.

Scrolling Table settings persistence

All aspects of the scrolling table configuration are now persisted across sessions, including Column Sort Order, Price/Value/Custom Source Columns, and Column Display Order

Import Item IDs from Wowhead

Continuing the theme of creating Groups – historically the Group Maker was a primary middle-man between searching and filtering Wowhead for items you want to import into the addon in-game.

To make this process even more efficient we have added support for copying the IDs of any Item search on Wowhead directly into the addon in-game.

Once you’ve applied your filter, select the Copy button, and then click IDs. In this example the filter is for Bind on Equip drops added in Dragonflight, copying the IDs will include up to 1,000 items returned by Wowhead, and not just the first 50 shown on the page which was a historical limitation of our Group Maker web page.

Once copied, you can import them in-game. Learn more about creating Groups by importing.

Custom Strings in More Operations

Custom Strings are extremely powerful for the main Operation types in TSM such as Auctioning and Crafting – allowing fine-tuning and ultimate control on what you do and why at any time.

We’re empowering more Operations in TSM 4.14 to support Custom Strings including Mailing, Vendoring, and Warehousing.

Previously these operations generally only accepted integers such as sending 20 potions to an alt character without much flexibility. Now you can create a custom string to only send 20 potions if the market value is where you would consider selling them using price sources, or restock a particular vendor item if your personal sale rate is high enough using a logic function.

Learn more about the available Price Sources and Value Sources out-of-the-box in TSM.

Custom Source Formatting

Prior to TSM 4.14 all Custom Sources would be calculated and displayed as a currency. Now there’s an option to show a Custom Source as an integer, a percentage, or as a currency as before.

When creating a new Custom Source you can specify the format and you can modify this setting for each Custom Source at any time. Any Custom Source can be displayed in your tooltips via the Tooltip Settings.

In the following examples these Custom Sources use one of each format, the first being a percentage representing an average of personal and regional sale rate. The second shows a number representing the max stack size for an item (a new value source added to 4.14!), and finally the third is a currency averaging various price sources to provide a general price point.

Lots of Other Minor Changes

Addon Optimizations

Further to the Scrolling Table optimizations mentioned earlier, additional work has been completed to further improve the performance of the addon in general – particularly in the Profession UI and Auction House UI.

You’ll notice that the addon is generally more responsive and snappier as you engage with these pages, and searches or Shopping scans in the Browse tab are also much quicker due to scan time optimizations.

Mail Contact Management

It’s now possible to delete names from the recent contacts list in the Mail UI, get rid of those pesky alts that have been deleted or transferred!


There’s a new button in the Auction House UI to ‘Rescan’ to immediately repeat an Auctioning Post or Cancel Scan.

Help Tooltips

A large number of tooltips have been added across the addon to explain functionality for a particular setting, input, or button. Mousing over the section will display the tooltip with contextual information or a definition.

More documentation for the Addon suite can be found in our Knowledgebase.

Getting Help

Please join our Discord server as per the Get Started instructions, to share your feedback on the 4.14 Beta or report any bugs and issues you encounter.

TSM Premium Survey

We are reviewing our Premium offering and considering where to take it in the future, with potential new features and benefits to enhance your gold-making experience inside and outside of the game.

Your feedback is important in shaping the future of TSM Premium and the direction we take will be guided by your input, so please take a few moments to share your thoughts and suggestions in the following survey – it is open to all TSM users whether you are currently a Premium member or not.

Please note you will need to be signed into a Google account to complete the survey, this account information is not shared with TSM. If the embedded survey does not load correctly, it can be accessed through the direct link:

TradeSkillMaster 4.13 – Supporting Dragonflight 10.1.5

Following on from our last update with a recap of what was done and was to come in TSM in support of Dragonflight professions and systems – we’re pleased to share further improvements as well as the release of TSM 4.13!

Recent Dragonflight Profession Updates

Rounding out the last releases in TSM 4.12, let’s recap what has been introduced since the start of the year and our last blog update.

  • Updated milling / prospecting / disenchanting rates for Dragonflight reagents.
    • Given the significant variations of profession knowledge and equipment we gathered a lot of data to represent averages across the board as best as possible.
  • New quality selector to easily switch between different target qualities for a given crafted item, as well as easy access to add finishing reagents.
    • Selecting a different quality will automatically adjust the reagents selected to meet the selected quality, and is further enhanced in 4.13!
  • Quality reagents can now easily be changed by clicking on the material row in the material list
    • Seeing each quality of the reagent for at-a-glance pricing info and inventory quantity helps you decide what to use

New improvements in 4.13

With the launch of patch 10.15 we are introducing version 4.13 of TSM with a number of improvements to Dragonflight profession support and other additions we think you’ll love.

4.13 Profession Updates

Iterating on the things introduced in 4.12, we have continued to improve profession support including:

  • Adding support for Dragonflight salvaging for milling and prospecting
  • Adding support for crafting inspiration to show potential cost and profit of a crafted item that is not guaranteed
  • Improving the Optional Reagent flow further from the modal introduced in 4.12 to an in-line editor when a recipe is selected, allowing quicker access to add embellishments and finishing reagents

Region-wide support in 10.1.5

With the introduction of direct trading between any characters for gold and items on any realm in a given region, we are also very excited to expand on TSM cross-faction support added in 4.12 to cover region-wide tracking and reporting.

In 4.13, and if the option is enabled in the TSM General Settings, addon information such as inventory and accounting data will be available on any realm in your region. That way you can reference what you paid for an item and see how many you have on any realm from any other realm.

This will also include gold quantity and gold history, so your TSM Dashboard will cover all realms in your region if you’re actively using the addon on multiple realms!

To manage Accounting Data, the option to remove old sales and purchases has been modified to support an input instead of a predefined list in the Accounting Settings. If you’re making use of this feature and experience some performance issues it’s recommended to purge older data (which won’t affect your gold charts).

Custom String Performance Enhancements

Some TSM users have created some monster Custom Strings for all kinds of Operations and material prices. We’ve spent some time optimizing how Custom Strings are calculated to improve performance for very large or complex Custom Strings in very large profiles. This should also reduce the number of errors encountered when using TSM with some content creator profiles.

Grouping pets by level

We are also introducing ‘item level’ grouping for Pets in 4.13, where the pet item level translates to the level of the pet. When you’re grouping items by ‘item level’ they will be treated differently when shopping and posting through operations vs pets of other levels that are not grouped for example.

TSM Addon 4.12 released!

Following the brief beta test, TSM Addon version 4.12 is now fully released for Dragonflight!

Check out our previous blog post for a full recap of the changes you can look forward to:

If you are running the TSM Desktop Application, you will be automatically updated.

NOTE: It may take up to 12 hours for you to receive this new version due to expected increased server load with the Dragonflight launch.

If you encounter any issues, please join us on Discord for support and help.

Announcing TSM 4.12 Beta Test!

As the launch of the Dragonflight expansion draws near, we’re very happy to announce the beta test of the 4.12 addon update to TradeSkillMaster!

If you’re a TSM Premium member you will shortly be receiving an email inviting you to participate, along with instructions on how to get started.

Additional invites through our Beta sign-up page will be distributed on a First-In-First-Out system, so be sure to sign-up if you’d like to get involved! Otherwise, you can bypass the queue and get instant access by signing up to TSM Premium.

Let’s take a look at some of the major features 4.12 brings!

New Crafting UI

To support the upcoming Dragonflight Profession changes, we’ve taken a look at the overall design of the Crafting UI for professions. This approach will form the basis of the UI design improvements as the new expansion features are introduced.

You’ll notice primarily that the Group Restocking flow has been moved out of a sub-tab and is presented at the top of the Craft Queue. Selecting Restock Groups will show the Group Tree and from here you can select any Groups that have a Crafting Operation assigned to be restocked.

At the bottom of the Crafting UI there has been some rearranging of some of the familiar elements including the reagents required for the recipe, the crafting cost, rank, and any recipe status such as ‘Missing Materials’ or ‘On Cooldown’. This will accommodate the new Dragonflight features including profession skills, and reagent quality selection.

In the Craft Queue itself, there’s a new indicator showing when you’re not logged into a character that can craft that particular item.

Pricing & Data Updates

Korean & Taiwan Region Support

We’ve been working hard to expand the reach of TradeSkillMaster, and with recent improvements by Blizzard on the Community Auction House API data feed we are very happy to be able to include support for more WoW Regions in 4.12. TSM users in Korea and Taiwan will now be able to use the TSM Desktop Application to get pricing updates exactly the same as users playing on North American and European realms.

Head over to the TSM website to set up your realm now!

DBRecent Price Source

Over the years we’ve had a lot of feedback and discussion around the use of ‘AuctionDB Minimum Buyout’ to represent the material cost of reagents, and we have generally not recommended this approach for various reasons. However, we do appreciate that there is a middle ground between what is happening on the Auction House ‘now’ and what has happened on average over the last 14 days with the ‘AuctionDB Market Value’ calculation – especially when there are significant changes to the economy such as an expansion launch, or a patch affecting a sub-set of items and markets.

With that in mind, we are introducing a new Price Source called ‘AuctionDB Recent’, or DBRecent. This Price Source uses the same approach for ‘AuctionDB Market Value’ however it is only applied to the auctions contained in the most recent pricing snapshot. It is not an average over time, nor is it a single data point for one auction at the lowest price contained in the last price snapshot.

We hope this can create even more flexibility when determining the value of something, and allow for more input to any decisions you make while executing your gold-making strategy.

Pricing Trend Indicators

In addition to the new Price Source, we are introducing trend indicators in item tooltips where pricing data is available.

Trend Indicators

In this example, you will see two trend indicators. The first is beside Market Value which represents the trend when compared to the Historical Price, this trend indicator is enabled by default. The second is beside Region Market Value Avg which represents the trend when compared to the Region Historical Price, this trend indicator is disabled by default.

Improvements to Region Sale Data

Both Region Sale Rate and Region Sold Per Day have been given another decimal point to give more visibility on items that sell infrequently. Previously, an item that had a Region Sale Rate lower than 0.01 for example, indicating that fewer than 1 in every 100 auctions posted sells on average, would not have a valid value for this source. Now, this value can go down to 0.001 which would indicate that 1 in every 1000 auctions posted sells on average.

Retail Scanning Improvements

Since the launch of the region-wide commodities, Blizzard has not resolved several issues with addons interacting with the Auction House. One of these issues is failing to return Seller information during a Post Scan with an Auctioning Operation. With the launch of TSM 4.12, we have decided to workaround this issue by ignoring the Seller information for posted auctions, which should improve scanning performance, particularly Post Scans.

As a result of this decision, we are retiring the ‘whitelist’ and ‘blacklist’ features in Retail which relied on the Seller information being available.

Cross-Faction Support in Retail

Earlier this year, Cross-Faction support was introduced in Shadowlands. This means you can now leverage professions, items, and gold on any realm regardless of whether the characters are Horde or Alliance.

With 4.12 we have introduced support for inventory/item tracking between factions in the Ledger and item tooltips, profession and recipe data is considered if the recipe is known on the opposite faction, gold is tracked across factions including in the gold graph of the TSM Dashboard, plus the ability to see your opposite faction characters in the Alts dropdown in the Mail UI.

Custom String Editing UI

We’ve supercharged the experience of editing Custom Strings in Operations, with IDE-style syntax highlighting.

Syntax highlight, invalid price source, and unbalanced parentheses

This new modal will give much more information when things go wrong like typos, unbalanced parentheses, missing values, or unexpected characters when building out a Custom String. It also includes automatic white-spacing for easier reading and clearer indications that the input is saved without accidentally closing/escaping the editor.

Automatic white-spacing once saved

Performance & General Enhancements

Under-the-hood Improvements

We’ve taken a look through a lot of the TSM addon codebase and refactored things to improve the rendering of TSM Addon windows and make them even more responsive.

Commodity buying reliability has also been improved while browsing in general and during a Gathering search.

Group Management

Item tracking is now more intelligent and can distinguish between things that are grouped as ‘Base Item’ and those that are grouped as ‘Item Level’. This means you can now manage inventory for things like transmog that could be any item level due to scaling but is generally grouped by Base Item.

When searching the Base Group, we have introduced the Select/Deselect All option that is available in most other Group Trees. Additionally when selecting an option in the ‘Show ungrouped items as’ drop down menu while managing groups, this selection will persist when navigating around the TSM UI or closing and reopening it.

The Addon API has been enhanced to include an option for returning items that are in a given TSM group, check the Addon API documentation to learn more.

Getting Help

Please join our Discord server as per the Get Started instructions, to share your feedback on the 4.12 Beta or report any bugs and issues you encounter.

TradeSkillMaster 4.11 Released!

Version 4.11 of TradeSkillMaster is now available for general release! Your Desktop application will update your addon automatically, or you can download it directly from our site or your favourite addon manager.

More details on all the new features can be found in our beta announcement post, but here’s a quick reminder of the highlights for this release:

  • Full Optional Reagent Support, including Crafting Operations, Gathering, and applying them in the TSM UI
  • Improved item Grouping, with the option to group by ilvl while ignoring secondary stats:
  • Granular item Tracking, with inventory considered by ilvl/variation instead of only by name
  • Drag & Drop for items between groups:
  • Region Sale Data for Classic, BCC, and Battle Pets in Retail
  • Custom Themes with export/import options:
  • Various under-the-hood optimisations for scrolling tables with a lot of results and syncing data between accounts

Please do join us in Discord if you run into any issues or encounter a bug or error in-game, we’ll be happy to help!

TradeSkillMaster 4.11 Beta Launch!

We are thrilled to announce that the beta test of TradeSkillMaster 4.11 has begun!

If you’re a TSM Premium member you will shortly be receiving an email inviting you to participate, along with instructions on how to get started.

Additional invites through our Beta sign-up page will be distributed on a First-In-First-Out system, so be sure to sign-up if you’d like to get involved! Otherwise, you can bypass the queue and get instant access by signing up to TSM Premium.

Let’s take a look at some of the major features 4.11 brings!

Shadowlands Profession Support

The biggest upgrade in 4.11 is supporting the new profession system introduced in Shadowlands, which includes optional reagents for your recipes and the various outcomes of those optional reagent combinations – including the base legendary crafted items.

Rank 4 legendary base item with accurate crafting cost in TSM 4.11

The TSM Crafting UI has the added functionality of applying optional reagents for secondary stats and ilvl, Crafting costs and profits are now accurate for the item variation you have, plus your Crafting Operations and Tasklist will consider the optional reagents required!

Adding Optional Reagents to a Craft in the TSM 4.11 Crafting UI

Speaking of grouping your items, a new option has been introduced to accommodate the various ways to craft in Shadowlands. In addition to grouping items by their specific variation, and by ignoring all variations, the new option is to only consider the ilvl of the item while ignoring the secondary stats.

Showing ungrouped items by ilvl while ignoring secondary stats in the TSM Groups UI

This means you can group, for example, ilvl 87, ilvl 151, and ilvl 168 crafted items separately but ignore the secondary stats, then apply distinct Crafting Operations to restock a certain ilvl, and Auctioning Operations to undercut the certain ilvl regardless of the secondary stats. To support this, inventory tracking has also been enhanced to track items more specifically by ilvl rather than by name only.

With 4 Shadebound Vest items in bags, TSM only tracks 2 with ilvl 151

Group & Item Management

In TSM 4.11 it’s even easier to manage your Groups and move items between them. Now you can drag and drop selected items between Groups, without needing to remove them or have them on hand! Selecting multiple items is also supported. Check this short video demonstration:

Drag and drop single or multiple items between groups in TSM 4.11

Custom Themes

Building on the introduction of Themes in TSM 4.10, we’ve added the option to customise the colour palette to your own preferences! Once you’ve found your perfect colours you can export a string to share with your friends to import.

TSM Burning Crusade Levelling Theme (Import)

AuctionDB Changes for Retail and Classic

For Classic Era and Burning Crusade Classic players, region-wide sale data is now generated and available via the TSM Desktop Application. This means you can now reference dbregionsalerate and dbregionsoldperday in your Operations!

For Retail players, this sale data is now also available on Battle Pets! This is particularly useful for those that like to flip pets across realms in your region.

TSM Region Sale Data now available for Classic Realms and Pets on Retail

Addon Optimisations

Various under-the-hood tweaks and tuning have been implemented, with an aim to improve stability and reduce lag when crafting, scrolling large tables from Shopping or Browse searches, and syncing data between accounts.

What’s next?

With all the features and enhancements we have introduced in 4.11 (and earlier!), we thought of ways to share and discuss the things we are planning to do in future updates of TradeSkillMaster and get your feedback or input on what is important to you as an every day user of the addon.

As an experiment we have created a Trello board with a public ‘Roadmap’, or a list of ideas and features we would like to introduce to take your gold-making to the next level with TSM. We would love to hear what you think!

Getting Help

Please join our Discord server as per the Get Started instructions, to share your feedback on the 4.11 Beta or report any bugs and issues you encounter.

Introducing: TSM Ledger!

It’s been possible to export your TSM Accounting data through the Desktop Application for quite some time, usually to manipulate and analyse in your favourite spreadsheeting software. To do this in the past meant maintaining several documents, and trying to figure out how to manually build formulae to interpret the vast amount of data available.

We wanted to power up this area of your gold-making, making it easier to take a deep dive into your sales and purchases to unearth the answer to questions like ‘Which Group has the highest profit margin?’ or ‘Where can I reduce my expenses?’ or maybe ‘Where am I taking the biggest losses?’.

To help you answer these questions, and many more, we’re very excited to announce the latest evolution to the TradeSkillMaster suite, with the launch of TSM Ledger – a powerful web-based analytics tool for your TSM Addon transactions, purchases and sales for Retail and Classic WoW.

TSM Ledger will use your Accounting data, allowing for automatic graphing and charting of your activity in-game over days, weeks or months – using pre-built reports or creating your own Data Queries. You can build your own Dashboards with your favourite searches, and highlight particular metrics that you want to keep track of regularly and personalise your analytic experience.

For those with large gold-making empires, you can filter between accounts, servers, profiles, or characters – making it incredibly easy to identify any weak links in the chain or even capitalise on an opportunity that may have otherwise been missed.

As a TSM Premium subscriber, your data will be automatically synced, so you don’t have to upload anything manually. If you’re not on TSM Premium you can upload things as-and-when you log out of the game, or when you need to.

You may recognise this tool, launched earlier this year by magorukun, and we’re just as excited to welcome him to the TSM Team to offer this tool as a native extension of TradeSkillMaster. You can view what’s upcoming for TSM Ledger on the public roadmap, where you’ll see there are lots of cool things planned. We can’t wait to hear what we can do make this tool the best it can be for all of your analysis requirements.

Check out TSM Ledger today, and elevate your gold-making to the next level!

TSM 4.10 Launch & Team Q&A

TSM 4.10 launched as announced this past Sunday, which is a huge milestone for the TSM Team! We’re so glad that feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, and thankfully after a stable beta the release was stable too!

If you haven’t already, you can check out the full Change Log here.

As part of the launch, the TSM Team did a Q&A with questions submitted to a reddit post and had a general chat about 4.10, how we work and what we’ve got planned in the future. Below you’ll find a link to listen to an uncut audio recording of the 70-minute session, and an accessible transcript to read.

(00:00:10) Start

Gumdrops: We’ve just crossed the hour so we’ll go ahead and get started! Thank you, everybody, for joining our “live” Q&A – I say live, it’s partly live because you guys submitted questions ahead of time on the reddit post. We are celebrating the launch of TSM 4.10, which so far – fingers crossed and knock on wood – has been very smooth! If you do have any issues, or bugs, or feedback, do feel free to share that here on Discord in the #support channel, or #classic-support if you’re on Classic. The TSM team is all here, we’re watching and taking everything on board.

If you haven’t already updated, the TSM Application will do that for you the next time you log in – or you can grab it off Twitch or Curseforge, whichever is your preferred method – and we hope you enjoy it!

(00:01:20) Introductions

We’ll just jump in and introduce everybody on the TSM Team, if everybody is here, I’ll go first since I’m already talking! I’m Gumdrops, I started this Discord server as an extension of the WoW Economy community and integrating the TSM Support and community in to it as well. I run the WoW Economy subreddit, and I do all of the support and community management here on the TSM Team. So if there’s any feedback or comments, or issues or bugs you’ve reported it’s normally me along with the rest of the team that handles that. That’s me, who wants to go next?

Sapu: I’ll go next! I’m Sapu, I guess on the blog post my title was listed as the Founder and Lead Developer, which sounds roughly accurate. I do a little bit of everything on TSM, most recently my time has been spent working on TSM 4.10, but otherwise I just hopefully keep everyone happy.

Muffin: He’s the official cat herder!

Gumdrops: That’s very accurate.

Muffin: I’ll go next! My name is Muffin and I’ve been on the TSM Team I believe I believe in December will be 7 or 8 years now. I’m a Backend Developer, so I don’t work on the addon proper much, only in rare instances. I do most of the code that’s responsible for pulling prices from Blizzard’s API and then doing all of the number crunching, turning it into things like market values and historical values that you’re all familiar with. I’m happy to have everyone here, this is really cool and we’re all really excited!

H3GGERS: I’ll go next. I’m H3GGERS, I am the Designer for TSM 4.10 and I guess all of TSM4, the website and all sorts of things. Yeah everything, that’s me!

Gumdrops: You make the buttons?

H3GGERS: I make the buttons!

sigsig: Hey, I’m sigisig. I’ve been on the team for about 6 years or so, I work on the website and I’m working on the new App.

ButchMonkey: Hey I’m Butch, I’ve been on the team for two and a half years now. I’ve been mainly working on the TSM App, although I did do some of the addon dev in the early start.

Resike: Hey I’m Resike, I’ve been a developer since two years so I’m one of the most recent members. Most recently I’ve been working on the Addon, like everything on the Addon specifically.

magurokun: I’m magurokun, I joined the team about three months ago now. I’m a web developer and I’m working on the unannounced project that I’m sure we’ll get to talk about a little bit later.

Gumdrops: Very exciting stuff, can’t wait to get that in to the hands of everybody. I think that’s everybody unless I’m missing some secret team member?

Sapu: I hope not, as this’ll be the first I’ve hearing of it.

(00:05:15) Start of Questions

Gumdrops: We’ll just dive right in to the questions. It’s going to be an open format, so I’ll pose the question to the group and then everyone in the team is free to jump in and share their comments, or add anything that they’d like to it.

The first one that was submitted to reddit from user RHAGU, what was the reasoning behind naming the addon 4.10 instead of TSM 5? There are a lot new features and improvements to the addon, to the extent that it could have been a TSM 5 but what was the reasoning behind naming it 4.10 instead of TSM 5?

Sapu: I guess I can kick us off here, but I’d love for others to jump in as well. I think the main thought process there was really with TSM4 and all of the other previous major releases – we’ve basically started from scratch and re-envisioned large pieces of TSM. That wasn’t really our approach with 4.10, our approach was more: We’ve worked on TSM for like 8 years or something at that point, we’ve got a ton of feedback on TSM4 and we really wanted to take a stab at integrating that feedback and iterating on it, and coming out with something in 4.10 that we thought was really the gold-standard of what we wanted out of TSM 4 generation of the addon. We were chatting a little bit earlier with other people in the team, and there’s nothing totally groundbreaking in TSM 4 – for example, thinking back to TSM 2 we added Groups and Operations, so there’s nothing totally revolutionary or fundamental like that, but there are a million small things that, by themselves, are super awesome – and we think make the experience really good. So we didn’t really feel like it was a TSM 5 release, as far as how we were planning it and the scope of things.

H3GGERS: Just to throw my two cents in there – oh I just saw TSM Vista in the chat that’s hilarious, but I hope it’s not TSM Vista, this should be like TSM Windows 10! But yeah, I always thought of it as that we’d established a base with TSM4 and it had a lot of great things going for it since it was built from the ground up as Sapu said. Then 4.10 was just an extension of that, we had spent a lot of time listening to the feedback, and we had learned a lot from TSM4 and had some ideas about some stuff we wanted to do differently. It was a bit more iterative on TSM4 so it didn’t feel like a brand new release in that sense.

Gumdrops: I agree with that and for me it where we wanted TSM4 to be at the beginning. We were kind of restricted on how far we could take TSM4 in terms of the launch of BFA and the timing of things. Not to say that we didn’t have some bad timing with 4.10 as well, because we had other hurdles thrown in amongst that like Classic, and the new Auction House in patch 8.3. For me, 4.10 is where TSM4 really wanted to be so it made sense to do that justice before moving on to a more iterative project.

Sapu: One other thing I’ll add if I may. In general, the goal is not to make TSM5, 6, 7, 8 – I think if we can get to a place where we are shipping constant iterative updates that are bringing a lot of cool new stuff, then that’s sort of ideal. There’s not really an incentive, necessarily, for us to go to a TSM5, it’s more how can we approach some really nice features without rewriting the whole thing, and make that a TSM 4.12, or 13 or whatever that might be.

Gumdrops: I’ll take a quote from Community Manager Lore‘s book here and say “Sounds good, makes sense”. Moving on to the next question, bit of an easy one – How long have you been working on 4.10?

Sapu: So I did look back and it’s been about a year and a half since we made the first technical change on 4.10, and ironically that was made by H3GGERS..


Sapu: You probably added some new textures or something? But we’ve been thinking about it probably for about two years now.

H3GGERS: Yeah I know we had some early designs, as I said so much of 4.10 at least from the design perspective wasn’t great [I think he meant to say TSM4 – editor], and in a way it was a response to feedback. I went to pains to really listen and read just about everything that was written, or said, in response to TSM 4. I immediately started relooking at the UI, acknowledging the steps and looking for areas of improvements. I’d have to go back and look at when the first pixel was placed, but I think 4.10 was started pretty quickly, or not long after the release of TSM 4.

Muffin: As someone that didn’t work a whole lot on the Addon directly, I have to give a tip of the hat to them and H3GGERS especially. Engineers and Designers aren’t the people that like having their work critiqued to the extent that TSM4 was, usually – and those on the team like H3GGERS with his designs went back and listened to feedback and took a hard, hard, look at missteps to acknowledge them. I think that speaks to our team as a whole and is one the reasons why a lot of us have been on the team for so long – we all enjoy that camaraderie so it’s pretty cool!

H3GGERS: Yeah 100%!

Gumdrops: I think that also speaks to the community as well. The fact that so many of you guys listening, and so many people using TSM are enjoying using it so much, and sharing how you want to use it and what you don’t like about it. It’s to the extent that it’s something that you’re passionate about, it’s similar to how players of the game itself share feedback because you want to see it succeed and you want to see it do better. I think we’ve got a community that has that freedom to share that feedback and not feel like it gets dismissed because we are listening to everything. I hope we can show with 4.10 it has been taken on board and this is how we want to approach things in the future.

H3GGERS: Yeah I definitely want to second that, this community blows me away! In terms of how quickly we get passionate and thoughtful responses to decisions we’ve made – very rarely does it turn in to, what does Taliesin say – it was a shit show..

Muffin: Obviously!

H3GGERS: Obviously! I don’t think it ever gets to that level, it’s nice. I have reached out to more than a few of you one-on-one and asked to know about a particular opinion or process and workflow – because admittedly I’m not an expert at gold-making, a lot of you guys are. Some of you out there are experts at using TSM in a way that I can only dream to be frankly. So it’s great to have you guys, you’re a tremendous resource as a designer.

Muffin: We all definitely play WoW at different levels, Sapu what was your max level again?

Sapu: I did level a 110 to test some Rank 3 Alchemy stuff, but I haven’t played it, to your point! But to echo what H3GGERS said, we definitely listen to basically everything that is said about TSM. I have a bad habit of reading reddit and Discord obsessively – I don’t respond that often in #support other than when we’re doing something like today with a major release. But I’m pretty sure I’ve read nearly everything ever said in our #support or TSM Discord channels, and we definitely appreciate all of the feedback.

(00:14:31) Time Check

Gumdrops: For sure! So this one is mostly for Sapu and Resike maybe – other than the UI in TSM 4.10 being different, how different is the addon under the hood? Did you do any major revamps or refactoring of the addon under the hood?

Sapu: Maybe I can start with this one. I think with TSM4 there were a lot of really big under the hood changes, and that was sort of intentional as we wanted to rebuild all of those infrastructure systems to make it easier to work with in the code base and support some of the features. One thing in TSM4 we added a whole new object-orientated class model that we follow when we implement a lot of stuff now, and databases that we use to store all of the various data that TSM tracks, and all kinds of things like that. With 4.10, it wasn’t the case that we wanted to go and rip all that up and iterate on it – but there were some major changes mainly around Auction scanning. That code was basically rewritten from scratch to support the new partial-result loading that we do on retail now, so if you search for /armor or /battle pets or something on retail you’ll see what you’d normally see in the Default UI when you do that initial search, where it just shows one row per item. Seeing that in the TSM UI I think is an awesome feature, and that definitely required a lot of behind-the-scenes work to get that running smoothly.

The other major piece that I’ll call out is one of the big features of 4.10 is that you can change the appearance, so going through and standardising in the addon how we handle all that stuff in a way that we could then allow customisation of it was a major effort. But in the long run, that will definitely pay off! Anything you want to add Resike?

Resike: Yeah a couple of things. We also threw away a lot of ineffective elements that prevented the addon from being snappy in some ways. Other than that there are a bunch of quality of life improvements that make your life easier or makes things go much faster!

Muffin: One of my personal quality of life change is scaling the UI, you know when you hold shift you can drag the corner and scale the UI and text. Also moving columns around! I love being able to do that.

Gumdrops: That was a pretty big design change. We’ve talked a little bit about development under the hood and the processes that we follow, but Vahdis would like to know if that process has changed over time especially as the team has evolved?

Sapu: Maybe someone else can kick this off?

Resike: Yeah I usually just bug Sapu to do things, then eventually things happen.

Gumdrops: That certainly works!

Muffin: One of the things back when I started it was just Sapu and I, and.. I’m forgetting..

Sapu: Bart?

Muffin: I was thinking Bill for some reason, I hope Bart isn’t on he’s going to murder me! We just kinda did our thing! But if anybody listening works in any kind of IT department, or engineering or design team – we’ve grown to the point now where we are a proper engineering team! We have weekly meetings every Sunday, Sapu has proper one-on-one’s with most of the team, then we have individual sectioned meetings just about the app or meetings just about the addon. It takes that kind of organisation and that kind of discipline as a team, because we’re so large, to keep us all focussed and on track. This is why I joke about Sapu being a herder of cats because it’s necessary for us to reach a level of success with TSM that we’ve attained at this point. It’s just really cool, as somebody that does this as part of a day job there are some parts of working on TSM that are actually more efficient than what I do working for a nation-wide company, so it blows me away on what we’ve been able to accomplish.

H3GGERS: Yeah 100% on that! I’m in the same boat, I work in enterprise software and a lot of what my day job is mirroring some of the processes that we have in place for TSM. But frankly, our processes work so much better in a lot of ways, and there are things that I think “man, I wish I could bring this to my day job!” Muffin touched on most of it, but we keep a very robust – and have done since day 1 that I joined – we keep a robust board, trying sprints and kanban. We keep a thorough backlog and we track what we’re working on, we plan milestones – we’re getting better at it with every release.

Muffin: Proper pull requests, and code reviews. Pipelines that are automatically checked for linting errors, we have the whole package man!

H3GGERS: Yeah! This team alone has taught me more about how to do a pull request, and I bring that back to devs at my day job and they’re like “you’re a designer, why do you know anything about github!”

Sapu: I think just to add to that, part of what I learned over the years of I guess “managing” TSM – we’ve tried a million different ways of doing things, as far as JIRA or different ways of doing project management. It’s one thing I’ve painfully, at times, tried to grow in to. At my day job in parallel, I’ve been in similar roles so I’ve really tried to take some of the good things I’ve found in my day job and tried to apply it to TSM. Really for me, the ideal for any kind of project management or organisation structure – is that it shouldn’t be getting in people’s way or it shouldn’t be something that people despise doing. So at least from my perspective, if people don’t like the way we’re doing something then we should do it a different way. I don’t have a horse in the race as far as how we do things, I just want to make sure that everyone generally knows what’s going on and we all feel like we’re moving in the same direction and it’s not just the wild west of people working on different things.

Gumdrops: Excellent answers there guys, we touched on some of the questions further down the list which is great because I think we’re very keen on chatting a lot here and we haven’t got through many questions! We’ll move on the next one.

Sygon in the chat and RHAGU on reddit said, how do you approach the line between “let’s add this to 4.10” and “this is out of scope”? Where did we, or how did we draw the line and say we’re going to continue working on this and add more and more stuff.

Sapu: I can touch on this and others can feel free to jump in. In general when we set out to do 4.10 we had a relatively defined scope of what it would be – as I mentioned earlier we weren’t setting out to totally reinvent groups and operations for example. We wanted to look at every UI and make the things that that UI did better, and figure out what other functionality we could fit in there that people have been asking for or didn’t really feel right in how we had currently implemented it. So having that initial scope of “that’s what 4.10 is going to be”, it’s not going to be an entirely new addon as far its feature set. This helped us draw that line at “this is something that we think could be cool, but it doesn’t really fit with the rest of what we’re doing with 4.10” – in that case we would punt it. But when someone says “I wish I could filter auctions by the new /collectable option” that is something within what the addon is doing and brings value, so it’s something that we pulled in.

Gumdrops: Anyone else have anything to add there?

H3GGERS: I think Sapu covered it pretty well!

(00:24:36) Time Check

Gumdrops: Excellent. So more of a general question. Not many other addons have this kind of functionality, but how does the beta release mechanism work? How does that system get put together and how does it make its way through the app to users during the beta outside of twitch or the normal addon distrution channels?

Sapu: I can touch on that. As Muffin mentioned earlier, we have some pretty nice infrastructure stuff set up! So every time either Resike or I usually, or H3GGERS if he’s making a texture change, every time we put up a pull request there’s a bunch of automated tests that run to make sure we don’t break anything. Then that gets reviewed and merged. Once it’s merged we run a few more tests and generate a build that then lives on our server. Then the app knows where to find that, and in the app anyone that’s been in the beta knows we have this concept of release channels – so we have a whole access list of which users are allowed to see which release channels. Those release channels correspond to a specific version that would be the latest version for that channel, so 4.10 during the beta that was the latest beta version. People on the normal release channel would have been 4.9, whatever we were on version 38 or something – I don’t remember it’s been so long! But that’s generally how it works, it’s all distributed through the app, and the app knows where to find the latest version – it’s all pretty automated, we basically just press a button when we want to deploy a new version either to beta or to release. So far we haven’t pressed the wrong button and we haven’t shipped a beta version to the release channel, knock on wood!

Gumdrops: You’ve gone and jinxed it now!

H3GGERS: It’s such a robust development, or pipeline for lack of a better work, I have a great hope that we can get to a point that we can even leverage it for A/B testing which would be great. Some of you, one day, will get a totally different UI, and I’ll hear from which of you that hate it and which of you love it but we’ll keep testing!

Gumdrops: Were there any surprises during the development of 4.10, in terms of things that the team thought were possible but they were not – or thought weren’t possible but turns out that they were possible? This comes from Nixl and Bilis in Discord.

Sapu: Not to put you on the spot H3GGERS, but I think this would be a good question from your perspective on the design side?

H3GGERS: Yeah, I remember early on I think we talked about this in the development of TSM4 – but the stuff that we’ve done in the table view, I remember asking early on “can we resize those columns?” and simpler things like hiding them. In general my first thought was there’s no way we’re going to get this super flexible, almost equivalent to an excel spreadsheet experience – but you and Resike blew me away with what you were able to achieve there. The latter part of that question there were definitely things I didn’t think would be possible, that being one of them.

Sapu: And there are things that you’d think would be super trivial like underlining or bolding text, and I say no we can’t do that?

H3GGERS: Oh you want to get me started on that? Yeah I mean why can’t we have just a simple block of text with two different font weights. That’s something I don’t understand.

Muffin: Blizzard are also using a pretty old version LUA for addons which doesn’t help matters either!

H3GGERS: The more I complain about the font thing, you will go and write some magic that basically gives us that ability. One day you’ll just say “Hey I figured this out!”

Sapu: I will make textures of every single character in the alphabet, and we’ll render those in real-time.

Gumdrops: RIP FPS! Following on from that for H3GGERS, what was your approach in terms of the design of the addon overall compared to version 4 and 4.10?

H3GGERS: I guess as I said earlier, so much of 4.10 was taking a hard look at what I had done, or what I had proposed and what we had done in 4 then looking at the feedback and trying to rethink some things. There were things that made it 4.10 that I don’t think that we had time to get to with TSM4. I guess the better question would be what was in my head when I was designing for TSM4 – which for me at the time was a completely new experience. I had used TSM3 a fair amount, but it was a challenge going in to that, especially aesthetically I wasn’t quite sure what kind of look we were going to hit on. Thankfully, after listening to the community 4.10 was easier – this UI should be sleeker, it should maximise on space, it should be more modern even though thinking about addons being modern in a fantasy-based game is a little discordant. I’d love to support at some point something that would have a little more harmony with the game skin, but that was kind of a ramble but that’s how I approached that!

Gumdrops: No that was some good insight thank you H3GGERS. Just to kind of wrap up this section of a meta-discussion, in a previous AMA around 6 years ago Sapu you said that TSM2 was what you had always envisioned TSM would be – how has the vision for you for the addon changed over time, and how close is 4.10 to that vision?

Sapu: I guess anything you post online is going to come to bite you, huh?

Gumdrops: Yep!

Sapu: Actually, to be honest, I still stand by that, back in TSM2 we added groups and operations. I mean could you imagine TSM without groups and operations? Unless you played a lot around that time, or before then, I don’t think you’d be able to recognise what that would look like. From that perspective, TSM2 had all of the major components that make up TSM today – as far as what you think about when you think about what TSM looks like. In the meantime, since then, we’ve made a ton of improvements on how usable the addon is and fleshed out a ton of areas and a ton of different features. So I’m super happy with where 4.10 landed, but I think there’s always more work to be done. I don’t think TSM is ever going to be at a point where we can say we’ve done everything we want to do, which is what makes it fun. So that’s what we’ll continue to do.

Resike: I have a follow-up question to this one, that I feel is kind of missing. Did you ever think that you’d have a such a team and a business model that works around a World of Warcraft Addon?

Sapu: Uhh, no! One thing that’s sort of crazy, that most people probably don’t know unless you happen to follow me on Twitter, but I was actually working on TSM full time for about four months between March and July when I started a new job. That was mainly by choice, and it was pretty awesome that I was able to do that – and it’s definitely not something I ever thought could be possible when I started, or even just a few years ago. In general, the way I think about it, obviously we pull in money from Premium and there is the aspect of TSM that technically is a business, but the way I think about it is all of that stuff allows us to do a lot more than we would otherwise. We spend a lot of money on servers and there’s no way we could do that if we were just being supported by people clicking on ads on our website. So really all of that Premium stuff goes back into the addon and allows us to do a lot of things and try a lot of things that we wouldn’t otherwise – so we’re definitely grateful for that.

Muffin: I think a lot of the servers that Sapu and I used 7 years ago when I first joined the team, we were getting like $20 per month from ad traffic, if that. It was largely just paid out of our pockets in the very beginning just to get things off the ground. Before then, the app itself is what hit the Blizzard API, so there was no database and there were no servers involved to host data or price tracking and historical data. It’s just crazy what TSM is now.

Sapu: The goal for me as far as the business perspective is that we can maintain a place where don’t have to think twice. If we needed to buy or if we needed to buy Trello or pay for any sort of tool to make our lives easier, we can just do that and we don’t have to sacrifice on the efficiency or happiness of the team over $20-$50 per month.

(00:35:03) Time Check

Gumdrops: Some really good stuff there, thank you! We talked about a little bit about the past and where TSM has come from, but what about the future? What kind of things can we expect in version 4.11, 4.12 or maybe even a TSM 5 in the future?

Sapu: As I mentioned there’s definitely a long list of things that we still want to implement in TSM. There’s definitely no end in sight as far as the addon and improvements that we’re going to make there. I don’t think we’re rushing to make a TSM 5, at least for me I’d be perfectly happy continuing with 4.11, 4.12 and so on. We’ll see if that changes in the future, but there’ll be no shortage of updates to TSM coming in the next months or years even.

Muffin: I think some of the next really big things that we’ll probably see won’t be in the addon itself. I’m working on completely rewriting the backend from the ground up. I’ve learned a lot just from being an engineer for another 7 since doing the original version, if you can believe it the version running now is the same version that’s been running for 7 years now with some changes for things like bonusIDs when they’ve come along. We’ve learned a lot of lessons over the years, so I’m in the process of rebuilding that from the ground up. I’m hoping it can better support things like Black Market Auction House notifications, the notifications on our website haven’t always been the greatest in my opinion and a lot of that is on my shoulders with the backend. A lot of these changes will allow sigsig to do some cool website shit in the future, so I’m excited for a lot of the stuff being built around TSM in the future.

H3GGERS: From a design perspective I can echo everything that’s been said so far, I’m in the same boat and I want to make iterative improvements from here on out. In terms of the addon, we have a huge list that we want to turn our attention to. Design-wise we’ve heard you, there’s lots of interest out there from the community about expanding on the appearance stuff like getting your own custom colors in to the addon, things with fonts we’re looking in to. We definitely want to address and do anything to make the experience more accessible and more comfortable for our users, that’s always going to rank highly. I don’t want to give away the entire road map, but there’s so much fun stuff coming!

Gumdrops: For sure, and I think we’ll be hearing about one of things a little bit later. What else have we got here, Vahdis would like to know if we’re going to get any more price sources, completely changing the subject, or value sources that maybe speak to the volatility of an item, or maybe references the WoW Token?

H3GGERS: Vahdis haven’t you had enough price sources?

Muffin: Vahdis you’re cut off!

Sapu: You need to go on a price source detox! But the short answer to that is yes, we want to add more price sources. The balance is looking at the development time and is this something we can support. Performance of price sources is also something we paid a lot of attention to in 4.10, making sure that if you add some price source to every price string that you have in the addon that it doesn’t kill the performance of the whole addon. This takes a lot of thinking and development time, so it’s not just a case of adding one line of code to get a new price source. If anyone has any cool ideas on price sources that you’d like to see, we don’t currently have an exhaustive list so we’d like to hear from you.

Muffin: I think a cousin to price sources that I’ve seen mentioned recently, probably by Bilis, is a log function which I think would be really cool. There are a lot of things that are potentially on the table, with 4.10 out we can start having conversations about those.

Gumdrops: Excellent! A question that came from RHAGU on reddit and Sygon in Discord, but they miss the old additions and plugins like PriceChecker and GuildSorter – as a team do you still support other addon authors making things to integrate into TSM, or do you prefer to take ideas and make them in-house?

Sapu: If there are things that people find super interesting in other addons that are related to TSM, or in the case of the question, things that potentially directly add functionality to TSM – those are definitely things that we look at and consider adding a proper TSM feature. As far as supporting addon authors integrating into TSM, we do provide an API that allows others to pull data out of TSM and leverage some of the TSM functionality like custom price strings and inventory data with 4.10 and things like that. One thing that we did before is let people build plugins that show directly in the TSM UI itself, and that’s something we’ve mostly shied away from as it doesn’t always look good and sometimes break the UI. So we encourage things like LootAppraiser and things that can live on their own.

Gumdrops: That’s fair enough. Changing directions again, this one from Bilis – if you could have had a hand or say in the way the new Auction House was developed by Blizzard that was launched in patch 8.3, what would you have done differently to accomodate TSM?

Sapu: In general Blizzard designs their APIs to support their own UIs, so unless there is an issue with their UI then they’ll unlikely change it. I gave them a ton of feedback during the PTR of 8.3 about things that would make our lives a lot of easier – I haven’t actually checked if they’ve made any changes on 9.0, but there are lots of things they could improve, so I guess we’ll see what the future holds.

Resike: The more communication to the addon developers would be nice! However, the Blizzard addon developer team got remade twice in the last year so it’s not really their fault.

Gumdrops: That’s unfortunate! And following on with a question from metket in the Discord here, what kind of communication have we had with Blizzard in the past and has there been any kind of influence in TSM or from TSM with how things are implemented?

Sapu: I think the short answer there is no, there hasn’t really been any communication. We’re definitely open to working with them if they have any feedback on how we can tweak TSM to make the game a better experience for everyone, and how we can change how we’re doing certain things to reduce load on their servers. They haven’t approached us with anything concrete there. So that’s where we’re at!

Gumdrops: If Blizzard are listening, we’re here to talk!

Muffin: The backend API guys have been a bit more communicative, there are some of them on Discord and some of the addon development communities. They’ve been a big help with the recent migration to the Blizzard API to their new Community Data API which drastically change the format of the Auction Data. It would be great if we could get that Blizzard-wide, it’d be awesome.

Sapu: That’s funny, that used to not be the case. The Web API team used to be in totally the same style as the Addon team, and I mean the organisation not the individuals – in terms of how they approached communication, but they totally turned that around and now they’re doing a great job on the web side.

(00:45:05) Time Check

Gumdrops: Sounds good, let me see if there’s any questions left to pick out of the first part of the list. We already talked about appearances and the price sources. You mentioned briefly 9.0, but now that 4.10 is released, has there been any thoughts on how TSM will work in Shadowlands with regards to the Relics of the Past? Or is that still to be discussed.

Sapu: That’s still something that we need to figure out. There hasn’t been a ton of effort in making TSM work on 9.0 other than making sure it doesn’t immediately crash when you load it, so that’s something we’re going to be spending time on over the next couple of weeks before that launches. Then as Shadowlands gets going, it’ll be interesting to see how people are using TSM and what functionality they’re missing to deal with the new relics, and everything else that might change. Hopefully we can respond to that quickly.

Gumdrops: For the final question of this section from reddit user Elvaanaomori, what kind of plans do you have to make TSM easier to use – and how do you balance things that you implement for advanced users vs novice users?

Sapu: Maybe H3GGERS can talk about this, I’ve been talking a lot!

H3GGERS: TSM is one of those, I’ll just use the term application because it really is at this point, where it’s so dynamic and so flexible to be tailored to everybody’s usage that there’s this huge hurdle for the new user trying to jump into it. One thing that we’ve always hoped to achieve, and I think we’re getting closer, is thinking about the new user experience and ways we can help guide a fresh TSM install, or a user that has never thought about gold-making. We can guide them towards a proper setup, whether that’s getting them a head start with their groups – and we made a leap with TSM4 with regards the Base Group and the Default Operations we started supporting. A lot of those things work great out of the box, but maybe we need to message that a little better in the future and that new user experience would come in to play. The challenge is making something that’s helpful, and not like Clippy to use the example that most people are familiar with. We don’t want this to be popping up all the time and getting in the way and make it so it’s easily dismissable so those that know the addon through-and-through and maybe the just did a new install and they don’t want to see that. Being smart about when we surface that information is key.

The other thing too, outside of the addon I think there are also tremendous gains to be made. For a start leveraging this community, there are a ton of people here that make some amazing content that helps a lot of new players and I kinda want to get out of the way of that – I think you guys do a great job, so if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! There’s that aspect and our other platform areas like that website and the desktop. We’ve talked about a lot of cool things with the website where it can be a second area where you’d really manage your gold-making. We’ve made some huge steps forwards in creating groups, but in a lot of ways making groups on the website and send them to the addon that’d be cool – but I’m just talking offhand here! I like the idea of a alternative.

Muffin: One of the other things in 4.10 that has been really cool, even as someone that is relatively experienced with TSM I’ve found it incredibly useful along side those that are new, is the Base Group now being aware of all items that TSM itself is aware of. So anything that’s in the TSM data, you can easily make groups from that without having to find searches on wowhead or using the group maker – you can find the items in the Base Group. I’ve seen a lot of excitement around that!

H3GGERS: I think that’s probably my favourite part of TSM 4.10, and I remember that goes back to that earlier question about what did I think was possible or not possible – I remember discussing with Sapu, and saying TSM knows about every item in the game more or less, so shouldn’t we have a search experience of that? I really hope we get to a really robust filtering system on that search so you can find exactly what you’re looking for.

Gumdrops: Definitely a lot to come! And something on my side, in terms of the support of TSM – now that 4.10 is out and available, I’m hoping to expand the Support website and the Knowledge Base as a documentation hub, as a reference point for users new and old to understand what a particular thing in the addon does. Not necessarily how to configure it to do what you want it to do, but more how it functions as a starting point to build on from there.

H3GGERS: Something that explains the concept of groups and operations I think would be extremely beneficial. A lot of new users get pointed towards TSM and expect it to be this thing just makes them gold, but they need to understand at least those two fundamentals before getting much further.

Gumdrops: Especially coming from other addons that don’t have that concept, they try and use TSM in the same way and it doesn’t necessarily work out in that way. That can cause some frustration.

H3GGERS: We have a lot of good ideas for that fresh install and the new user experience, there’s a lot more we can be doing to help users set up that first group list – whether it’s something we suggest and propose or even just highlight the ways to leverage the Base Group. Maybe we show exactly what’s in the Default operations to help them understand, we’ve also talked about getting a little more sophisticated how that string is presented. There are a lot of great examples like in Discord where you can show syntax or IDEs that can do auto-completion or allows you to search and parse variables.

Gumdrops: Excellent! As Sapu mentioned, there are a lot of things on the list for TSM as an addon, as a website and as an app. So with that segue, I’d like to put forward magurokun to talk a little bit about what he’s been working on with the sneak peek we shared in the 4.10 release date. If you want to maybe introduce yourself and talk about what you’ve been working on so far?

(00:54:05) TSM Unannounced Project Sneak Peak

magurokun: Yeah! Hi everyone! So you’ve been able to export transaction data, and group data, from the TSM desktop app for a while. It’s quite a common thing to bring this into spreadsheets or doing some kind of analysis on the CSV file that you can export that you can get. Of course, having to manage spreadsheets can get quite complicated, you can get a lot of duplicate sheets and you have to build your charts manually and it’s all a lot of manual work you have to do. So when I started making gold and getting into TSM back in January, I built a small site that I would use to upload these CSVs and it would build a nice graph for me.

Back in April in I joined the TSM Team, and we’re basically going to be making this tool part of the native TSM website – so it’s going to pull transactions that you’ve done in-game and your groups on to the TSM site, so you can view it through graphs and break it down by groups and items you’ve sold or purchased! You can do some data analysis on your transactions, and build some dashboards to personalise your data.

If you have TSM Premium it will automatically synchronise your data, so you don’t have to upload anything manually. If you’re not on TSM Premium you can upload things as-and-when you log out of the game or when you need to. That’s basically it in a nutself! We’re currently still cross the t’s and dotting the i’s on it, so there’s nothing to share from it right this second – but we hope to get a release out ASAP for you.

Gumdrops: Sounds very exciting! Do we have any particular time-frame in mind?

magurokun: We have nothing concrete really, but definitely before Shadowlands and hopefully before pre-patch we’ll be releasing.

Gumdrops: Fantastic!

magurokun: We’ve got big plans for it in the future with a large roadmap, so lots of exciting things to come on it.

Gumdrops: It almost seems like TSM is no longer just an addon but it fits into the suite so-to-speak of application, addon, website. It’s multi-faceted, and a combination of tools that will help anybody make gold in the game. Hopefully these are the kind of things that we continue to improve upon and update in the future based on the feedback you guys give. Hopefully it’s useful, I suppose it was for magurokun when he started otherwise it wouldn’t have been done! But as Sapu mentioned earlier, to be able to put resources behind things like this is to get it out to more people very valuable.

Sapu: To add on that, and maybe I’m jumping ahead to some of the later questions, but this one of the things I’m most excited about regarding the future of TSM. We have this whole addon and application infrastructure in place, and it’s like how can we leverage the build awesome features on the website that wouldn’t necessarily fit well in the game itself. The analogy I would use is like Ask Mr Robot, which I know isn’t really a thing any more, but that kind of optimisation and analysis of your gold-making as a separate function in TSM. Definitely exciting stuff!

Gumdrops: I think we’ll wrap up with a couple of fun questions about the game itself, we’re just about over our time here. A quick question from Bilis to the team, how many of you still play World of Warcraft?

Muffin: I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that I’m the only one that still plays almost daily!

H3GGERS: You’re wrong! I’m getting back in to it, even though I took a break for baby H3GGERS. I took a break but I’ve been doing a lot, and like a lot of people I got in on the Brutosaur craze. I’ve always had an active subscription, so I jump in now and then to check out the state of the game or the addon.

Muffin: I started playing the day it came out, I was in the Air Force at the time – I’ve been playing non-stop ever since! I met my wife while raiding during Burning Crusade, she knew what she was getting in to! I have a giant Horde tattoo on my forearm, it’s life at this point. I also have a huge Horde logo on the back of my card, with a tank icon beside it – and beside it says ‘Your gold is always welcome here!” so that’s a little TSM homage. That’s not gonna change any time soon, I’ll play til the servers die.

Gumdrops: Yeah nobody ever quits World of Warcraft, it’s just a break of indeterminate length!

Muffin: I should have H3GGERS design me a TSM logo tattoo! My goal is to have a double sleeve of WoW, DnD and gaming icons.

H3GGERS: We need to do that!

Gumdrops: I think Sapu will be the most disappointed with the upcoming level squish with his main character.

Sapu: I have a level 82 Rogue that basically signifies when I stopped playing the game, that has 289 days played at this level which will soon turn in to a level 41 Rogue which will be very sad.

Gumdrops: That definitely has to be an anomaly in the World Warcraft system to have that amount of time player at that level.

H3GGERS: You can buy a boost with your gold!

Sapu: I’m sure I have some boosts left over from previous expansions.

Gumdrops: Fantastic. So just to wrap things up since we are a gold-making addon if anybody wants to jump in – if you do still, or did make gold when you played – what was your go-to strategy for making gold?

Muffin: 100% flipping almost exclusively.

Gumdrops: Mine was mostly profession, a lot of old-world stuff. I took a leaf out of Sheyrah’s book, she was the one that was teaching me the ropes of TSM to being with and that was her strategy so it became mine!

H3GGERS: When I first got into gold-making I was one of those guys pushing profession kits before Legion, I was in trade chat offering different kits for levelling.

magorukun: I only started back in January but certainly getting to know a profession, in my case Inscription, was the key to getting a Brutosaur!

Gumdrops: Were any of you guys playing the game when Inscription was introduced and remember glyphmas?

Sapu: Yeah! I actually really got into gold-making right when Inscription was released. Before that and how I got into gold-making originally, I was doing some shuffles prospecting Ore and turning that into gear and then disenchanting it for enchanting mats in Burning Crusade. That was my start in gold-making!

Muffin: I got heavily into the prospecting shuffle in Mists of Pandaria. Ore to gems, to useful gems, and the crappy gems to gear to enchanting mat shuffle. So many spreadsheets! That was about the time my wife started getting back into gold-making and she started using TradeSkillMaster and we’d make a competition out of it.

Gumdrops: Did you have some incentives on the line, the loser had to do the chores?

Muffin: Yeah right!

(01:04:40) Time Check

ButchMonkey: One of the fun things for gold-making I remember doing was server hopping. Finding servers where the economy is totally different than the one you’re on, buying out a ton of mounts and mats – a good old spreadsheet to figure out how much money could be made. Around that time you could start using gold to convert into Blizzard balance, and if you could play cards right you could get you flip for free and make more on top that. It was a unique approach instead of flipping on the same server constantly.

Gumdrops: That’s some next level stuff!

ButchMonkey: It was hard work for sure, but it pays off.

Gumdrops: It’s a shame you didn’t have the web-based analysis tool that we’ve got upcoming..

Muffin: I know a lot of people do that with pets without needing to do character transfers. Learn the pet and pick it up on another server.

Gumdrops: Yeah Vahdis knows a thing or two about that, everyone can direct their pet questions to Vahdis.

There are a couple more questions that might lead to bigger discussions, but I think we’re over time unfortunately for what we had allotted. If there’s anything that we missed on the reddit post I’ll put together a transcript and a blog post with a recording. Thank you to the TSM Team for joining in and having a chat this evening, I think it was really fun. Thanks for everyone listening in, I really enjoyed it and I hope you did too.

Definitely let us know if you run in to any issues or have feedback on TSM 4.10, hopefully you enjoy the new version of the addon. We appreciate you hanging out and maybe we’ll do something in the future!

— END —

TSM 4.10 Release Date!

The TradeSkillMaster 4.10 Beta is sadly drawing to a close, but that means the public release is imminent!

Over the last 7 weeks, we have had more than 10,000 beta participants, who shared 8,500 comments or pieces of feedback and received a total of 15 addon updates containing 250 individual additions, changes or fixes.

In our mission to provide the very best tool to execute your gold-making strategy, we’re proud of the massive step forward we are taking from the original release of TSM 4 to today in what has been a very stable beta test of version 4.10.

Stable enough that we’re ready for a full release on Sunday, September 6th at 10AM Pacific! As part of the public launch, we’ll be hosting a “live” Q&A session with the TSM Team on our Discord server at 2PM Pacific time – read on to find out more.

To recap on some of the major updates and what to expect in TSM 4.10, check out some of our previous posts including:

A brand new and improved user interface, with colour themes!

Blog post: TSM 4.10: UI & Design

New price & value sources usable in more places, with validation!

Blog post: TSM 4.10: New Sources

Searching for any ungrouped item in the game, in the Base Group!

And much, much more! Check the full Change Log for the details.

“Live” Discord Q&A Session

For previous launches and announcements we have hosted several AMA sessions on reddit with TSM Founder Sapu, you can check those out here and here.

This time around we wanted to do something a bit different, so we’re going to collect Questions on reddit ahead of a live Answer session on our Discord server with the full TSM Team! This will begin at 2PM Pacific time on Sunday, September 6th 2020 (find your timezone here).

Who will be there?

Answering questions from the team will be:

Sapu – TSM Founder & Lead Developer
Resike – TSM Addon Developer
Muffin – TSM Backend Developer
H3GGERS – TSM UX & UI Designer
sigsig – TSM Frontend & Application Developer
Butchmonkey – TSM Application Developer
magurokun – Unannounced TSM Project Developer (Sneak peek!)
Gumdrops – TSM Community & Support Manager

How do I submit questions?

Submit your questions to this reddit post before Saturday, September 5th 2020 for your question to be considered. We may not get to all of them live, but the team may comment on reddit afterwards too.

Where do I listen to the answers?

Join our Discord server, and join the voice channel in the TradeSkillMaster category at the time of the event!

Thank You!

Some of you may not have had a chance to check out the Beta version, so as a thank you for your support you can sign up to the Beta in the final days leading up to the full release, and get an instant invite to get started with 4.10 early!