Monday, November 9, 2009

Microtransactions Yay or Nay

Well the big hullabaloo has been passed and here I sit, still thinking about the in game pets on sale for $10 by Blizzard. After seeing some other blog entries and comments, a couple points stand out.

1. This is really no different than offering Blizzcon TV coverage and a murloc Halo pet for $35. You still are paying money for an in game pet, no matter that you are also paying for television coverage of an event so well covered by the internet already. If you are OK with that pet in the game, there's really not a huge difference now.

2. Blizzard is pumping out as much money as they can get from the game. Players demand cool status symbol pets, Blizzard delivers (for a fee). Players demand faction changes, Blizzard delivers (for a fee). Players demand haircuts, Blizzard delivers (for fee in gold). Players demand race changes, Blizzard delivers (for a fee). Players demand server transfers, Blizzard delivers (for a fee). Blizzard is giving you all the play options and customization you want, but if you do not get it right in the beginning character selection page, you will pay for it. This is just more customization in my opinion.

3. Pets are a far cry from gear. Maybe I'm completely wrong and someday Blizzard will be so desperate that they will offer epics or even legendaries for real cold hard cash, but I just don't see it right now. They want more people accessing endgame content and have made the game very easy for a casual like me to at least see the endgame when we want to. This probably is not so good for hardcores, but it is a change that has not made the masses demand epics for real cash. With little or no demand, Blizzard will not be jumping on the bandwagon of risking subscriptions to sell gear.

So yeah it looks like a slippery slope to the end of WoW, but we've heard this all before. Then Patch 3.3 will drop and nobody will remember the fight as we all turn our attention to game content again. Then Cataclysm will drop and we will squeal like fanboys and fangirls, at least for a little while.

Oh and one quick fire...Patch 3.3 notes updated tonight and Oculus is being heavily nerfed to cater to the fact that there's rewards for doing a random heroic dungeon daily each day. Oculus was by far the hardest of the heroics, even probably topping ToC. So while it's not a huge deal, I'm kind of sad that things like Glory of the Hero will be much much easier considering about 1/3 of the really difficult achievements were in Oculus.


  1. I don't know that I agree with your statement on the Occulus. It was not difficult, you just had to be prepared to learn a different set of fight mechanics. Occulus was only harder, because you had to actually think about the group you wanted. I went in there and One-Shot Unom this weekend, we had 2 melee including tank. Frost aura was used and we just burned him. We didn't kite him, we just burned him. Kiting Bosses are not fun. And this gave me my best shot at finally giving me Proof of Demise. We wiped a bit on Eregos, a few times, until we figured out a good makeup of the drakes. Personally I am looking forward to getting some acheivements out of there now that I know how it works.
    I totally agree with you on the microtransactions. The TCG pretty much means that ship sailed. They sold mounts that could be used by any level toon. Not game breaking, on any level. They sold 'gear' a very cool tabard. The tabard counts towards the achievements, not game breaking. It served no benefit other than making my toon happy as she likes purple. I have party grenades that I use when we do something cool or important. It directly affects other players and makes them cheer and dance. None of it game breaking. The monk is cool, but I think I will just add it to my Christmas list, along with Lil' KT. I also have the tourney pet Murkimus, and the space marine Murloc, Grunty, from Blizzcon. People ask me where I got them all the time.

    What I find most intriguing people have finally accepted. Buying Tier gear with a daily heroic, a vault run, etc. That should make people more angry, but it fits with Blizzard's new business model of making raids accessible. I went into ToC raid this week and while we didn't one shot everything. It was a good smooth run, and I got a bunch more emblem and had enough to buy my tier chest. Now I just need the head. I have about 3 weeks of daily heroics to get it.
    The friend who invited me to heal was upset I didn't win anything. Well nothing dropped, or I lost the roll, but I don't raid for gear, I raid for content. I need gear to see it. The sad part is, I really want to see Ulduar, and now I doubt I will. Maybe after everyone is rocking in full tier 10 I will pug an Ulduar raid. Ah who knows. Icecrown tier looks good, Yeah my girls get to raid in dresses again. I hope to have my druid, and my shaman to level cap by Mid-December.

  2. That's a lot of work before mid-December! Hopefully you can get it done.

    Our guild farms Naxx right now once every 2-3 weeks for some lower-level toons with a bit of help from a couple Tier 9 raiders. If you want to see Ulduar, I suggest doing the same with your guild once you hit Tier 10 gear to some extent. I haven't seen the Vezax or Yogg-Saron fights but I definitely want to.

  3. Oh and as for Oculus, the trash mob pulls for the Constructs and the use of flight combat on drakes made it the most difficult heroic. The drake phase alone on Malygos made that fight twice as hard (in my opinion) compared to Sartharion without any adds. Once you get the hang of drake combat you are fine, but people give up and just choose to not figure it out, thereby making it much harder to get a group to clear Oculus.

    But those trash pulls on the Constructs.../shudder. That's the only place in heroics where I've seen multiple groups quit an instance because of trash instead of a boss.