Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Goblins: Who and Why? (Part 4)

Disclaimer: Though I hold a degree in Psychology, I do not profile people professionally. What I have written below is simply based on the education I have gained, and a bit of guess-work (as is all things in Psychology). It should be noted that aspects of each Goblin-type are not “end-all-be-all” aspects, and that often individuals will display characteristics of each type of Goblin. Lastly, all Goblins have one particular interest they each hold – the love of gold; this is what defines them as a “Goblin”.

The Intellectual Goblin

Of the Goblin types that I have written about, the Intellectual Goblin has a natural ability beyond which any amount of “learning” could produce; some might call this type of Goblin “gifted”. The Intellectual Goblin plays the Auction House because it is easy for them to assess and profit from. Some things you might find the Intellectual type doing are the following:

• Make impulse purchases (when they see a deal, they often “just know”)
• Find and execute the most efficient means of working the AH (whether that be with particular addons, macros, professions etc.)
• Spend the least amount of time at the AH as possible (the AH isn’t necessarily fun for them, as much as it is merely an easy way of making gold).

The Intellectual Goblin is probably the type to have gone to private school when they were young. This isn’t necessarily because their parents were rich, but rather that the public school system didn’t provide enough advanced services for them. On the other hand, it is also possible that they remained in public school, but advanced in grade levels faster than peers their age. What differs the Intellectual Goblin from the other Goblins is that they take very little joy out of the money making process. For them, the mountains of gold they earn are viewed as a means-to-an-end. What end that is can only be determined by the individual (pets, mounts, epic flying for other characters, purchasing items out of raids / raid spots etc).

Something else that I’d like to note in association with the Intellectual Goblin is the possibility of having a “touch of madness" (conclusion on page 4). In some circles within the field of Psychology, it is believed that there is a correlation between genius and insanity. In these circles, the line between the two is thought to be very thin; for some that line is crossed over in a back-and-forth fashion rather frequently. People that might be used as classic examples of this idea might be Einstein, Beethoven, or Van Gogh.

In conclusion, the Intellectual Goblin is most easily associated with people like John Nash – a brilliant mathematician and Nobel Prize winner known to have schizophrenia (as displayed in the movie A Beautiful Mind). Like Dr. Nash, the Intellectual Goblin can see the patterns unfold right before their eyes, and as such make some of the best predictions on how to make gold. They might not be the most social of Goblins, but if you can befriend one – do it! Their knowledge and inherent vision of patterns would be quite the resource.

And so, this article sums up my 4 part “Goblins: Who and Why?” series. Stay tuned for my next series, “Into the Mind of the M & S.”



  1. Hmm. I don't really see the difference between this and the 'Challenge' goblin. Everything is patterns, the challenge is to decode it and predict the outcome, then use what was learned to better predict in the future.

    Oh! Unless you were implying that an integral component of 'challenge' was the risk-thrill?

    Also, the 'touch of madness' link is broken.

  2. ty Iene for the bugged link. The biggest difference here is the Challenge aspect. the Intellectual Goblin takes no joy in finding new challenges to overcome - nor feels the need to. They play the auction house like a fish swims in water, or we breath oxygen. They see an item, they know what they can turn it into, and know the profit just from looking at something.

    Challenge Goblins enjoy the puzzle, Intellectual Goblins have it solved already.

  3. I dislike this editor. It has a hinky backspace mechanic and doesn't allow cut and paste.

    "Challenge Goblins enjoy the puzzle, Intellectual Goblins have it solved already."

    I disagree. The only good puzzles are the ones that have an integral "Heisenburg effect" in that you cannot solve the problem in one pass. The attempt at a solution modifies the puzzle's environment, thus changing the puzzle and revealing information that was not available before.

    These puzzles normally entail social mechanics, where (sans clairvoyance) people must solve or attempt to solve parts of the problem first, then observe the results.

    This is diametrically opposed to simple problems, ones that are based on set processes and can be solved in one pass. For example: If you get the Reinforced Cobalt Chestplate recipe, then buy cobalt bars and crystalized water, you can DE the chestplates and sell the mats. All the information is available ahead of time.

    Or am I missing something?

  4. I very much enjoyed this series, it has been a great insight to me.

    I do understand that there is some similarities between this type of goblin and the challenge seeker, however there are some differences between the two.

    As you say the challenge seeker plays the auction house for the fun and the thrill of doing so. Whereas this type of goblin does not find it to be a thrill, you does it anyway as a means to an end.

    Iiene says that challenge seekers also look for patterns, however this isn't always the case. As you mentioned in the challenge seeker blog post, the thrill of the challenge for them is to compete against others where instead Iiene talks about them more competing against themselves with challenges, problems and puzzles.

    In the end both possibilities are likely however there is some distinction between the two I feel.

    As for the editor, it is part of blogger on some themes. It is a great pain, but as far as I know there is little that can be done about it. :(

    I am very much looking forward to your next series of blog posts about M&S!

  5. Iiene: I think you are probably missing something.

    The Challenge-seeking Goblin enjoys the process involved in overcoming some new hardship. There is a methodology to the way in which they find new challenges, and work toward overcoming them.

    The Intellectual Goblin finds the process tedious, and works at going from points A to F to M to S to Z. They skip as many steps as they can to get to the end result - the faster, the better. But whats more, this skipping of steps is easy for them - and not just a matter of being lazy

    I'll use people who hike as an analogy. Some hikers enjoy climbing a mountain not only for the view at the top, but also for the challenge of climbing the mountain. Other hikers enjoy hiking ONLY for the view at the top - and seek to get there as fast as they can, with as much efficiency / ease as possible.

    The first is the Challenge-seeking goblin. The second is the Intellectual goblin. The Challenge-seeking goblin actively seeks out those trails that are the most difficult for them and enjoy the whole process that is involved in climbing the mountain.

    The second is the Intellectual goblin. They might "out-smart" the competition by driving their car up the mountain instead (if there is a roadway for them to do so). But the Intellectual goblin is different than those that are "Lazy" in that they were smart enough to BUILD THE CAR. Not just drive it up the roadway itself.

    Do you understand the difference...?