I meant that you knew which NPC had it, not the person themselves. Before the star-system, we had to just walk around until we found what we were looking for, with no idea if it was even there. At least now we have an easy way to directly find the NPC carrying the stuff we want.
Ah, sorry for misinterpreting. I didn't even consider how it was before, since it's so obvious that the original system was stupid and ridiculous beyond all common sense.
You do realize that market crashes are not a problem anymore. The only time you will have to refix your retainer now is when either the servers crash or after maintenance.
As opposed to an AH, when you NEVER have to refix your retainer?
As for HQ there are more and more people starting to use the 1,2 at the end (ie 1001, 1002).
As opposed to an AH, where ALL the hq items for sale are easily found?
As for traveling to each ward meh won't be much of a hassle to find HQ once they make it so the search shows HQ,NQ items.
Given the choice, I'll always take "no hassle" over "won't be much of a hassle."
The problem isn't that we can't get by with the current system. The problem is that there's a better system, and SE actually spent extra effort to NOT use it. If anything shows how hard SE worked to avoid re-using what worked well in FFXI, the Market Ward system is it.