Saturday, June 25, 2011

Who spends wins

Tobold wants to be able to purchase 'performance enhancing' items from in-game stores. The easy argument against this is that it turns an otherwise competitive game into 'who spends wins'. Tobold counters this argument by saying that these people don't actually want to buy ANYthing. Therefore their vote shouldn't count with the developers

Tobold is right in a sense. I certainly would't buy any items in such a game. Of course, I would just leave and go and play some better designed game.

I understand Tobold's mindset. He works hard and has money to spare. He wants to come home, sit down, and have a game tell him that he is super powerful and important. This is understandable. It's also what single player is for.


Sente said...

Depends on what the enhancement is. Some consider any kind of enhancement any enhancement "pay to win", others only certain type of items like "sword of infinite power" etc.

Which only shows that people may have different perspective on what they consider winning in an MMO.

If your mindset is that you are in some way competing with other players, then there is a fair amount of stuff that would be ruled out as ok to buy.

If you are just competing against yourself or the game, or not even competing or primarily have a cooperative mindset to what you are up against, then a lot more items are ok.

And this is only for those who wants to play a fair game and not cheat. The conflict is there because there are no simple rules what is a fair game that everyone agrees with, which is also one of the attractions with MMOs - you can play and experience the game in a bit different way than someone else.

mbp said...

@Sente in the comments to his post Tobold describes how he actually managed to buy a "Sword of Infinite Power" in Free Realms. It effectively ended the game for him because it was better than anything he could get through adventuring or crafting so there was no point playing on. Yet Tobold is quite happy to pay to advance more quickly than his competitors in World of Tanks even though it is a pvp game.

For the most part I find myself ageing with Tobold's preference for what is and isn't ok in a cash shop but I would be hard pressed to define the limits precisely.

Melf_Himself said...

Interesting, I had not read the comments in Tobold's post. Tobold himself comments:

"What bothers me most in WoT is the cash shop ammo, because there you can really have somebody with an identical tank and identical skill win over you through his wallet. Fortunately the stuff is hellishly expensive."

This is exactly my objection! Judging from his subsequent comments, it sounds as though Tobold is actually juat in favor of micro-transactions that promote the rate of advancement through the game.

Again though, if it were me I'd be playing a different game. If the advancement isn't fun, the game hasn't been designed well in the first place (and quite possibly, was designed to be super grindy to 'force' you to make these purchases).