Continuing from my recent post regarding RMTs (maybe worth reading before this post), I wanted to determine if players gain value for money when purchasing optional extras.
The term “Value for money” remains different for each gamer, after weighing up the cost versus their need to purchase. What is acceptable to some may seem extortionate to others, sometimes people don’t even use these account options and others like teenagers don’t have the disposable income for such purchases.
Micro-transaction isn’t a term that can really be applied to a lot of these extras due to the amount of cash in question. Taking this into consideration where does the line between micro-transactions and real money translations start and end?
Micro implies a small amount so perhaps it’s more in the region of £3 or less, once it gets close to half the price of one months sub it starts
So armed with a little more knowledge regarding this I’ll review the topic from the last post but attempt to avoid covering the same content as before.
Our Villains SG was bolstered in numbers when member of our Hero evening decided to move their villain characters from the Defiant server to Union. To the best of my knowledge everyone thought it was a value for money purchase, as they moved to a more active server.
Our recent adventures in LoTRO has prompted me with the option of transferring my previous character to the new primary server. I decided against doing this for 3 reasons:
- I really enjoy the gameplay content at early levels
- Post Christmas froogle-ness taking hold
- I finally don’t think that £11.99 is truly value for money, costing more than one month of subscription fees.
Well as we seen character rename purchases seems to be fixed at around the £6 mark, a cost that could be considered steep, the reasoning behind that could be to avoid player renaming their character multiple times. A trick that could be linked to mis-selling or just griefers.
That said if the number of times it could be used on a character was limited could the price be reduced to reflect this?
As I mentioned in my last post I’ve purchased additional slots for my City of account, I believe that the offer was good value for money if you purchased the 5 slots rather than the 1 or 2 options. Each new slot works out costing around £2.40, which when you think of the character information that is stored server-side, in the long term this works out as a rather nice deal.
Perhaps purchase of these slots is down to the extent of Altitis that us gamers suffer, in a game were avatar customisation is detailed then offering extra slots is good business sense. I expect to see this feature on both Champions Online and DC Universe on or shortly after launch.
As yet I’ve avoided purchasing additional Guild Wars slots, but with new slots added with each linked game, I’ve never really got to the point were I’ve run out of slots. I think for the hardcore GW gamer the price isn’t that high for a non-subscription game, considering that all the characters information will need to be stored on their servers in the future.
Transferring character information from one server to another shouldn’t be too taxing on the player, there is not much additional cost for storage of character data that is already in existence, prices for this vary for each game and with valid reasons could be good value.
Also this appears to be the case for character renames, this almost fixed price seems to be higher to avoid people abusing the system, but the rename of a character isn’t going to be that taxing for a game company, perhaps the future will bring cheaper renames for players, increasing in price for additional renames later on.
Without the aid of a large scale gamer poll it’s not that clear how people felt about these prices, there will be those that object on forums and website and those that just purchase the required item without too much drama.
Have you purchase any extras in MMOs?
Do you feel the pricing was right?