Skip to Content

Bid Wars 3 Beginner’s Guide: Tips, Tricks & Strategies to Become a Storage Auction Tycoon

The world is a treasure trove! No, really! You’ll never know what you’re gonna find. Perhaps your garage has some junk, but other people might actually have some treasure in it. Most of the time, these excess items are sent to storage units to gather dust and then to be forgotten by their owners and by time.

Eventually, these things would be found again and then sold to new people who could probably help these wayward items find a better home somewhere. Thankfully, you’re one of those people and you’re here to fight a war: a Bid War!

bid wars title
Let’s hit the road!

Aliens LLC, the same people who brought to you titles like Road Warrior: Nitro Car Battle and Chef Rescue: Restaurant Tycoon, now bring to you the third installment in the Bid Wars franchise: Bid Wars 3 – Auction Tycoon. Venture all across the United States of America in search for items lost to time, rare finds, inventions from another age, and more from within abandoned storage units. Sell these items to worthy collectors or curators, and rake in millions of dollars while doing it.

But getting these items isn’t easy because you’ll be fighting through skirmishes in the forms of auctions where other people would want to claim these as their own and your only weapons are your wits and your money.

Have you just started on this journey to become the richest? Are you having a hard time winning during auctions? You’re in luck, dear reader—you’ve come to the right place! Read our Bid Wars 3 beginner’s guide below and you’ll become an expert pawner in no time!

What Kind of Game is Bid Wars 3?

bid wars 3 items
Now the battlefield is the marketplace…

Bid Wars 3, in general, is an auction simulator and a town management simulator… well, technically it is for that second part. If you’ve just picked up this guide and are unfamiliar with these terms, don’t worry—we’ll go over it slowly.

As an auction simulator, you will be pitted against other characters in the game who are looking to claim the items within the storage units presented to you. This is the meat of the game. This is also where most of your actual earnings come from since you run a pawn shop.

This is where you put rare finds for sale out to other collectors who might want these for themselves. But you, yourself, have a personal collection you need to put up, so not every valuable item you come across should be sold at your pawn shop.

bid wars 3 pawnshop level
… Now the marketplace is the battlefield.

Bid Wars 3 also somehow doubles as some sort of a town management simulator wherein you have a neighborhood or a city that you need to maintain and look after. Technically, you are the head of this city, so you’re in charge of improving it at every chance you get. This includes opening new lots and putting up homes for rent, but we’ll get to that soon.

Because the auctioning part is the main feature of the game and what you’ll be doing most of the time, let’s take a look into this, shall we?

Pay Attention to an Auction’s Details

bid wars 3 phoenix
A few items to be had and for a low price… must be a newbie’s auction.

Remember that you’re fighting a war and each war has a mission. Every mission has its objectives and these are what good generals pay attention to each time.

To further explain what you’re supposed to look at here, it’s the details that you encounter before going to an auction. It’s a screen that pops up whenever you choose a location. Here, you will see the number of items that you can find and a suggested value for said items. Each item in Bid Wars is categorized into 5 rarity tiers:

  • Legendary (Gold) — These are the rarest of the rare. Most of the time, they belong to the Big 5 Collections. They may range from ancient statues, dinosaur bones, and the like—basically, things that most certainly belong in a museum. If you choose to sell any duplicates of these, they fetch hefty prices. They also take the longest time to sell. There are only a few or one of these per auction and sometimes there aren’t any at all.
  • Epic (Purple) — The items classified here are things not seen very often. They may be lucky charms, accessories from a native heritage, old-world relics, and many more. Selling these can take a while but their prices are quite high. There aren’t very many of these per auction.
  • Rare (Blue) — Rare items are things that aren’t commonly sold anywhere. They might be guns, war memorabilia, trophies from particular sporting events, rare toys, and others.
  • Uncommon (Green) — Anything listed under uncommon are items that are most likely sold in specialty stores. These can range from particular tools, handcrafted knick-knacks, sporting goods, ballet costumes, etc.
  • Common (Gray) — These are the most prolific items on the list. They can be found anywhere and they’re as mundane as a toolset, an item you can find in the mall or in your garage, etc.

As for the suggested value of the auction, this is usually the amount that you’re encouraged to prepare as well as the average amount that you might be spending per unit. This can change, however, since you don’t know if you’ll be getting the unit for cheaper or if you’re getting swindled. But we’ll get to that later.

Regardless, the suggested value should be your benchmark of getting a good deal with any unit in that particular auction. For instance, if your suggested value is $1800, then it shouldn’t be more expensive than that or it can exceed that by a slight amount. That is to say that it can go beyond $1800, but maybe $2300 might be pushing it a little. We’ll explain this in further detail as well.

With your preparations complete, it’s time to move onto the auction proper!

Don’t Judge a Unit by Its Looks

bid wars 3 item inspection
Never at first glance. Never.

Ka-chingk—! The lock comes off.

Dust fills the air and an odd, musty scent assails the nostrils of each and every one person in the premises. Their fancy suits and dresses now caressed by the stagnant atmosphere of years that time forgot. Amidst the unusual and powerful scent that permeated the vicinity of the storage unit is a scent that nobody can deny—a hidden scent.

This is the scent of value. But nobody here finds it through their nose, they see it with their eyes: glistening in the corner, rough textures from an age long gone, a souvenir from the years of youth. Such finds are all before you now, but who can say their true worth until you’ve won what’s within?

A storage unit auction has two phases: the looking phase and the bidding phase. This header here will describe the looking phase extensively since this is usually the most important part of the entire auction. That’s right, it isn’t the bidding phase, it’s this particular phase. The reason why this is so important is because you will estimate the values of each item one by one.

It’s a very quick look—you’re given at least 5 seconds to look at it before the bidding starts. The moment that the storage unit opens, tap at all the items like crazy. Numbers and prices should all be popping up. Of course, these are all unreliable but they give you a very, very rough idea of how much the unit itself costs.

bid wars 3 guitar
A guitar!

You can also drag the sides of the screen to have a better look at what’s inside the storage unit. Sometimes, from looking at the whole thing solely from the front, you won’t be able to see treasures hidden in the back of the unit. For all you know, something of the Rare tier and up is lurking there and you just didn’t see. You can still tap the items here while the bidding is ongoing, but it isn’t advised since the bidding phase runs entirely on borrowed time.

That said, if a storage unit is full of containers like boxes or barrels, don’t shun it entirely just because you can’t see what’s inside them. Consider bidding for it since you’ll never know what these beauties really hide. After all, these are the things you can’t judge at a glance—you have to win the unit first before finding out what’s inside. The worst you could find is junk because even if you do find common items within, they’re still at least worth something.

This is where the next bullet comes in. It’s time to know how to own an auction.

Dominate Auctions Like a Pro

bid wars 3 auction
The first shot has been fired!

“Anyone for $800?” the auctioneer cries out.

Amidst a sea of responses, you stand there, observing, waiting for the right price. With each response you send out, the competition fights back, and you end up having a price almost twice of what was originally suggested. In the end, what matters isn’t the person who won the unit but the profit you could get out of what’s inside. How do you keep yourself from losing money? Is there a way that you can win by getting the best out of the sales from the storage unit? Fortunately for you, there is. Plenty of it.

Firstly, the technique to winning an auction is to not lose more than you can afford. The easiest way you can do this is to bid late. We mean really late, by the way. The signal for you to bid would be when the auctioneer yells “Going Twice” and the speech balloon on the right is a glaring, spiked red.

The moment you do this, the competition will think twice about taking the offer since you’re paying much higher than they anticipated. The problem with this is if the competition decides to bid for much higher than what you tried to bid for. You may choose to keep fighting for it, but if the price is unreasonably high (e.g. $2000 based on the $800 example above), don’t bid anymore and consider it a hard pass.

Hitting the Pass button doesn’t necessarily mean a loss—it just means you’ll break even. Breaking even means you’ll leave the auction gaining nothing and losing nothing. You’ll have not spent any money on an overpriced unit and at the same time, you won’t come home with any valuable swag at all.

Sure, it sounds like a bad thing, but like we’ve mentioned in our previous guide for Bid Wars 2: Pawn Empire, it’s better to break even than to be broke. Besides, you can be super smug, too, if you want to have your competition buy an overpriced unit. You broke even, but at least you didn’t lose money! Ha!

kicking out competitors in bid wars 3
Or you can spend a small amount of gems to kick out a pesky competitor.

The only time spending exorbitant amounts of cash in this case is only if you’ve got money way beyond the suggested value. That way, at least if you’ve lost money, you’ll still get that rare 90s robot toy sitting there and you can put it up for sale later on. It’s mostly for collection’s sake or getting items to scrap for your city (more on this later).

Once you’ve finished an auction, it’s time to bring the items home… but not everything can fit in your trunk!

Plan Out Which Items to Take Home

bid wars 3 car
Take your hands off of the junk in my trunk!

You’re about to leave your auction and you have 1, 3, 6, 10, 15 items with you but a trunk that can only fit 3 (at first).

How could you make this possible? Do you take them all and stuff them in? Drag the rest via rope behind your car? No way. Even if that were possible, you’d ruin the items. It’s unfortunate that you can only take home a limited number of items with you, but don’t worry, there’s a way we can help you mitigate that.

Think of it this way: which items do you know will be bought right away by anyone? You can bring home the most expensive items, sure, but what about the less-expensive ones that you know will at least fetch a decent price? For example, anyone might buy a circular saw but not a lot of people would immediately buy a Moai.

bid wars 3 moai
… Anyone wanna buy a Moai?

To keep this dead simple, here’s a list of items you should prioritize. The higher up they are on the list, the more you should get them from your haul first.

  1. Collectibles — These are items with stamps on them on the lower-left of their icon. These help increase your EXP and allow you to open up more stuff in your city as you level up. Of course, if you’ve already collected any of these, you may put them up for sale.
  2. High-Rarity Items — Epics and Legendaries should definitely be brought home to be sold at the pawn shop. Although it will take a while, the payoff should be worth it.
  3. Mid-Rarity Items — Uncommon to Rare items will be easy to sell and their prices are no slouch either.
  4. Mundane Items — This group, regardless of rarity, would include household items like special tools, clothes, fancy things people can hang in their living rooms, etc.
  5. Duplicates — Found this item before? Leave it at best. If not, take it for some scrapping.

We’ll talk about which to sell shortly, but this is a general outline of what you should take home with you. After which, a kid will help you take care of the other items you haven’t taken with you, though we’ll discuss this later as well since it involves a very special action.

Once that’s done, and if you’ve already set the Collectibles aside, it’s time to man the pawn shop!

Manage the Pawn Shop Wisely

bid wars 3 bomb

The bell tinkles and your shop’s now open. Time to get down to business.

The pawn shop is the base of your operations. It’s the place where you’d sell most of your finds, if not, the most valuable ones. The way that the pawn shop works is interesting since you’ll only be able to sell your items based on time. It’s quite similar to having people come into your shop every minute or every other hour. This somehow gives the game semblance that there are people who are looking to buy anything you’ve found in your auctions.

bid wars 3 earrings
Holy moly…

Each customer will give you an offer. Offers may present themselves as a value greater than the original worth of the item you’re trying to sell or it could be the complete opposite. It’s a no-brainer to take offers for cheap, but it also takes a while before more expensive offers come around. Patience is key, of course, but persistence also helps you sell these items sooner than possible.

When you put an item up for sale, you’ll see that it will have a countdown timer to the next offer. This timer is relative to the rarity of the item (e.g. rarer items will have longer timers before they can be sold to anyone). If you have the gems for it, you may also spend these to bring the next offer in and hope that it’s better than the previous one, though we don’t really recommend doing this.

bid wars 3 offers
Hope the offers are good.

As we’ve mentioned in the previous item above, selling mundane items is the best since you’ll always have someone looking for something like it. It will declutter your warehouse (which also has limited space) while earning you some good cash. This may also make room for more expensive things that you can sell, especially if you don’t want to scrap these.

The best part about putting anything up for sale is that you can sit back, relax, and check back later when you play the game again. Someone’s bound to turn up with something good for that bass guitar you’ve had there sitting for hours!

Speaking of bass guitar, it’s time we addressed the elephant in the room…

Review Collectibles

bid wars 3 collections
Almost done with Magical Notes!

You find something in the back of the storage unit and it’s glowing. Gold.

Once you pick it up, you find out that it’s actually part of the Big 5. That’s right, the Big 5, a set of collectibles that are rather difficult to find. If you aren’t sure of what the Big 5 are, these are what you need to look out for:

  • Magical Notes — High-class, rare musical instruments that only play the most gourmet food for the soul. If you find a musical instrument, it might probably fall under this category.
  • Precious Jewelry — Necklaces, rings, earrings, all adorned with the finest, most flawless jewels the world could ever produce. Look out for any of these items and try to win them for your collection!
  • Egyptian Mysteries — These are ancient relics from a long, lost time that’s still being studied by archaeologists today. If you can look for anything that reminds you of pharaohs and pyramids, you might be in luck.
  • Findings in Nature — These are a paleontologist’s objectives! Fancy yourself someone who dusts off old fossils and/or dinosaur bones? These are what you need to look out for.
  • Van Gogh Collection — The items here are collections of paintings by the famed artist who made the Starry Starry Night piece. Ol’ Vincent’s gonna need your help finding his work.

Keeping a sharp eye out for anything that might fall under these collections is one of your biggest hurdles since many of these are extremely rare to find. To identify any of them as an item belonging to the Big 5, they have a golden 5 on the lower left portion of their icon.

Otherwise, collectibles are important objects that shouldn’t be scrapped or sold (unless you’ve picked these up already). The game doesn’t drop hints on which of these things are, but finding them yourself is half the fun.

If you wish to know the rest of the items you can find as collectibles, here is a list of their categories:

  • 90s Toys
  • African Heritage Masks
  • American Football
  • Asian Antiques
  • Cinema Classics
  • Classic Toys
  • Classic Vinyl Masterpieces
  • Classic Weapons
  • Cretaceous Park
  • Fairy Tale
  • Famous Items
  • Mondrian Collection
  • Legendary Guitars
  • Legion of the Dead
  • Persian Artifacts
  • Picasso Collection
  • Rock Star
  • Samurai Weapons
  • Sci-Fi
  • Seasons
  • Sports Archive
  • Wonderful Treasures

Remember, something that you find might actually belong to one of these categories. Take them and put them up in your collections before you lose them—the rarer they are, the more unlikely they are to pop up again!

At the end of the day, all of these things are just items in their basest sense. If you happen to have duplicates of these, you’d be best off scrapping them.

Scrap Duplicate Items or Items You Had Before

bid wars 3 scrapyard
For the good of the city.

Your city has a scrapyard! What is it for, exactly?

Well, the scrapyard, without saying so much, produces scrap or tools needed to improve the city. These items come in the forms of bricks, hammers, and other building materials, but they’re primarily used in upgrading your pawn shop, the scrapyard itself, and others. Apart from this, you use these pieces to create rental housing or motor homes (which we’ll tackle soon). They’re tiny, but their impact on your progress is quite important. Where do you get the scrap, though?

Scrap can be obtained by junking other items you have on you that you no longer need. You can go through different auctions just to get items that you’ve already discovered or mundane items that you want for scrap.

But either way, there will be a time wherein you’re forced to choose between items of greater value and items that are only used solely for scrapping. If it’s an item that you think won’t be sold right away and it isn’t a collectible, throw it into the scrapper.

When an item is in the scrapper, it will take some time for it to be turned into scrap. After waiting this duration, you’ll be given scrap at random quantities and of random kinds. Higher-rarity items will yield more scrap but will also take much longer to do so. This could be an advantage for you since you won’t have to keep loading the scrapyard so often.

Regardless, you won’t know for certain what kind of scrap you’ll be getting, so if you need a total of 4 bricks thereabouts, and all you keep getting are hammers, don’t give up—keep scrapping junk that you don’t need!

Just remember that you’ll only start with 1 slot for scrapping and an extra scrapping slot for rent. If you wish to get more out of this, then you’ll need to…

Upgrade Your Establishments

bid wars 3 building upgrade
Got lots of work to do.

Your establishments can’t stay the way they are forever.

You’ll need better facilities, more space, and overall renovations for their structural profiles. Upon upgrading any of your establishments, such as your pawn shop or your scrap yard (you can upgrade more of these eventually as you level up), you’ll be able to accommodate more space for any of your incoming items from your auctions. That way, you’ll be able to do more without doing so much.

If you really think about it, upgraded establishments are technically like warehouses but they do stuff instead of just storing your items. The pawn shop helps you generate more cash and the scrapyard ensures a steady flow of material needed to improve your city. Your warehouse won’t be as cluttered if you keep this up. Just make sure that all of your establishments are busy before you log out of the game.

Speaking of city improvement, being the head of this city means you’ll need to help people find places to live in it.

Build Rental Housing and Motor Homes

building rental houses in bid wars 3
Come on in!

Your city’s a living, breathing thing.

It’s not a hollow place with structures that have nobody in them, it’s got people who need to get to work, follow their dreams, or gawk at your awesome item collection. If you want people to come to your city and give you more money (yes, that’s always the goal in the end), it’s time you built them some rental housing or motor homes… or both!

That’s right, there are places you can put plots for housing. These are for people who come and go through your city. Of course, because of their name, they’re also required to pay you rent every now and then, so this is an extra source of income for you. More income means a better chance at handling more difficult auctions.

Before you do start building houses in the vicinity of your city, just know that you first need to clear space for the plot to be actually built. This costs nothing, but it’s the building of these houses that will require scrap. Hefty amounts are needed if you wish to have multiple kinds.

That said, if your goal is currently to build more housing for your city, what you need to do now is to continuously go on low-level auctions so you can claim items you already have. The scrapyard will be your best friend in this moment. Just prepare to not bring home any of the more of the super expensive stuff that you win in your auctions if you can’t help it. Just watch your energy as you do this—you don’t want this running out if you wanna keep playing.

Bid Wars isn’t an aimless game, however. There are things that need to be done!

Finish Daily Tasks for Bonus Rewards

bid wars 3 tasks
The money won’t earn itself.

You’ve actually got objectives! No, really!

The objectives you have here are akin to what most mobile games have nowadays—a series of daily tasks. Their  purpose in the game are to keep the player invested in playing it as well as a means for them to earn resources and extra EXP so they may unlock things as they progress. Though, they’re not as hard as they seem, these are what can be completed well within a day.

A few examples of your daily tasks include winning certain auctions, selling items for twice their original value, scrapping items, or collecting rent from your rental housing. Upon completing any of these tasks, you will be rewarded with cash and a small sum of gems. This can be completed a total of 10 times before the server resets which varies depending on your international region.

There’s one last thing that will help you get through the ranks, though this is somewhat of a hard pill to swallow.

Ads Are Your Friends

bid wars 3 commission
The middle button. Tap it. You know you want to!

Yeah, we’re aware—ads are troublesome.

They’re annoying nuisances that break the immersion of the game when you least expect it. They pop up telling you to try the new game wherein a person crashes their ex-lover’s wedding in order to flex their power level and ranking in this hot new game or puzzles that frustrate the intelligently capable by having the person in them solve the puzzle badly. But listen to us for a second: ads are actually good for you here in Bid Wars 3.

Here’s a list of things that watching ads can do for you as you play the game:

  • Each time you level up, you can opt to watch ads to get double the value of the rewards you normally receive. This is quite useful since you’ll be getting double the boon in gems and cash.
  • Watching an ad may also help you rent an extra slot in any of your establishments completely for free. Even though this is a one-time use, it still helps in the long run.
  • If you wish to reduce the waiting time you have for offers at the pawn shop, scrapping materials, or construction anywhere, you might want to watch an ad. This helps speed things up so you can easily move onto the next big thing.
  • Is your trunk full after an auction but you’ve got a duplicate Moai that you couldn’t take home because it’s full of collectibles? Don’t worry. You can choose to watch an ad to have all these items sold at a decent profit. This should be done after each and every auction.
  • Got no more energy or are you conserving this? You may choose to enter an auction without spending any by watching an ad. Easy-peasy.

If you still aren’t convinced, sparing only a few seconds of your time to watch an advertisement for a reward is pretty good by itself. Not only are you doing this for your own bonuses, but you’re also supporting the developers of this game. Though, if you do want to support them fully, you may send some love their way, if you know what we mean.

Consider watching an ad somewhat of a mini-vacation or a break from doing the heavy lifting in your game. Though, one word of caution that we can give you is that most of the items above, aside from making a profit off of extra items from your most recent auction, have a limited number of ad watches. You can only watch up to a certain number of these per day and if you run out, you may have to wait until the next day arrives in real time for them to refresh.

In Conclusion…

bid wars 3 profit
You snooze, you lose, dweebs!

Whatever the outcome of all that you do in Bid Wars 3 – Auction Tycoon, it all boils down to spending the least amount of money while gaining the most amount of money. Sure, it sounds easier said than done, but just remember what you’ve learned from reading our guide so far:

  • Always review the details of the auction before heading out. You might be out of your league if your money is below the suggested amount. Look out!
  • Observe what’s inside the unit. You can’t see what’s inside barrels and boxes, but what’s simply out there doesn’t mean you should judge the unit solely on first impressions.
  • Remember that you’re out to gain money, not lose it. If you want a unit so badly, bid late and keep the suggested amount of the auction in mind. Don’t push way beyond the suggested amount and it’d be great if you can win the unit for cheaper. If the competition tries anything funny by raising the prices to ridiculous heights, hit the pass button. Better to break even than to be broke!
  • The trunk of your vehicle has limited space. Take home only what you need and not just the highest-rarity item solely based on its price. You’re out to sell someone something at the pawn shop—not have these gather dust anywhere. Just prioritize the collectibles first.
  • Just like your trunk, the pawn shop has limited space. Put up items that you know that people will immediately buy but occasionally throw in the really rare stuff.
  • Having trouble keeping track of what you need to find out there? Visit the collections building and try to keep in mind what you might be looking for. There are treasures in every nook and cranny!
  • Duplicate items should be scrapped so you can use their material to improve your city. You may also go on auctions solely to find duplicate items.
  • All of your establishments should be upgraded when able. Extra space and newer improvements really help when you need it.
  • Rental homes help you earn cash passively. How else will you be able to visit the more difficult auctions out there? Thank the people who stop by your city!
  • You’ve got a list of 10 tasks a day. Don’t pass up on completing them—you earn rewards that way.
  • Ads are friends, not foes! Don’t shun them. They’ll grant you double the rewards, extra cash, and more!

And there you have it, folks, a beginner’s guide to Bid Wars 3 – Auction Tycoon. Rev up that engine, because you’ll be crossing the country in search of treasure like a modern day Indiana Jones… okay, maybe without the traps and the crazy cultists after your hide.

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, and you’re the one looking through these heaps for extraordinary finds. Where you’re going, you might need to find yourself a pair of cool sunglasses, too, because the future’s gonna be pretty bright. Your collection won’t fill itself up—win those actions!

Are you a veteran pawner? Have you been to hundreds of auctions and won every single one of them? Were you able to complete all the collectibles under the Big 5? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below this article!