Netherweave Bags. Whether we're discussing the most efficient way to stockpile (bolts!) or complaining about the ridiculously long crafting time, you've probably heard many gold makers discuss Netherweave Bags. These little sixteen-slot goldmines are a favorite among gold makers and rarely does anyone question what works.
I recently got into a discussion on reddit, however, about the value of Netherweave Bags from a gold-makers perspective as opposed to Frostweave or Embersilk, particularly talking about what's going to be important for Mists of Pandaria. It occurred to me that not everyone realizes why Netherweave Bags are the favorite. So let's go over that right now.
What's the deal with Netherweave Bags?
Netherweave Bags have two things going for them.
#1. They're cheap.
Netherweave Bags were the last normal bag made with basic cloth and some string. Afterwards Blizzard starting adding in enchanting dust and the like and greatly increasing the amount of cloth necessary per bag. This meant that every bag was significantly more mat-intensive. How mat-intensive? Well, for a visual aid, here's the raw materials for Netherweave, Frostweave, and Embersilk Bags:
To be honest there's not more more that needs to be said here. One stack of cloth versus 3-4 stacks + dust and maybe thread? It's no wonder Netherweave's so cheap!
Just how cheap is it? On average, in the US, Netherweave Bags will run you 1g21s per bag slot. Frostweave will cost you 11g38s per bag slot and Embersilk will cost you 16g86s per bag slot. When you consider that you will be paying roughly ten to fifteen times as much per slot most players are willing to drop a few slots for a good deal.
#2. People know they're cheap.
When someone brings their alt to the AH for the first time or buys bags to send off in the mail they usually know just what they're searching for. It's why you'll sell a lot more Embersilk Bags even if your Abyssal Bags are priced cheaper. Not many players really "browse" bags.
Netherweave Bags have been so cost-efficient for so long that they are the known go-to bags to get your alt a lot of space on a small budget. Generally speaking players will want bigger bags for their main and maybe their favorite alt but I don't know many players who are willing to buy humongous bags for every alt they roll. Even players like myself, with several alts outfitted with Illusionary Bags, likely have more bag slots on their account filled with Netherweave than any other type. They're just so damn cost-effective and everyone knows it, keeping the demand high.
I know you see that 200-500g price tag on the larger bags and you get all excited. There's no reason not to liquidate your ShuffleDust into Embersilk Bags. But as far as stockpiling for Mists of Pandaria goes you'll do yourself a great disservice if you're not filling tabs with Netherweave.