In every game that includes vendor trash, there is someone on the development team taking the time to create item descriptions and icons for drops that serve no other purpose than to be sold to a vendor for a meager return. That’s depressing when you think about it. It also seems like a bizarrely wasteful use of someone’s time and development resources. So why do these items even exist in the first place?
Maybe there’s a history to vendor trash that I’m unaware of, one dating back to the very first MMO ever created, World of Warcraft (source: global chat in every MMO during the first week post launch). Or perhaps the intention was to combat gold sellers by dropping goods that must be sold to a vendor for money thus creating an extra step in the gold farming process. Whatever the reason, it seems completely archaic in the modern MMO, if it ever made sense at all.
Why then do so many games continue to include vendor trash? Is the employee designing the tooltips and icons the entitled yet incompetent nephew of the publisher’s CEO, or were the vendor trash designers the first to unionize and thus solidify their place in every MMO development team? I’m sure the in game vendors are tired of being forced to buy all of our garbage. The inventory levels these vendors must have for worthless items like “Gary’s rusted bronze sword” or “Sally’s near-sighted tome of ‘it’s not you, it’s me'” must make it impossible to ever turn a profit. How they manage to stay in business is beyond me.
Now I don’t want anyone’s nephew to lose their job, but can we do away with vendor trash already? Or if damaged and otherwise useless items continue to surface as loot drops, perhaps they could be incorporated into a crafting system that allows them to be upgraded or stripped for parts. Whatever you do MMO developers, please stop filling my bags with useless stuff and causing local businesses to suffer from excess levels of worthless inventory. Auto-selling is not a solution either; just get rid of the junk please. I’d rather earn nothing at all than continue to collect broken weapons, animal limbs, and discarded underpants.