Friday, 19 July 2013

Wherever I Lay My Hat

I have previously covered the concept of Free2Play and PaytoWin, but the ingame pet store, or Blizzard kerching shop is the topic on everybodys lips. The latest thing to get people hot under the collar is the cosmetic helms available in the Blizzard store for just $15.

How many Helms are currently availble in game for Transmog purposes? and what would possibly be the motivation for spending $15 on a virtual item unless of course you didn't earn the money to buy it and you have just bled your parents credit card a little bit more. This is an item that like the cloak can be turned off in the UI, the reason is that they are often really quite ugly, or they cover the face of character that you painstakingly spent 10 minutes modifying skin colours, earrings, facial hair, and hairstyles. Then when Blizzard gave us the Barbers shop, we all went and made a small change just to get the achievement "Shave and a Haircut".
There are only two helms that I have ever liked in the game are the Horseman's Helm from the Headless Horseman Halloween boss, and the second was a Mail Helm with wings that made my Hunter look like Brian Blessed as the role of Prince Vultan in Flash Gordon. Everywhere I went people would shout "Gordon's Alive"
From a Transmog point of view there was always a problem with equipment, because your character had to be able to wear it, which is fine for Plate wearers but not good for Clothies. These new helms are usuable by all characters, but is it worth $15? I have never been tempted by an item yet, and these Helms are not going to change my mind now.
Blizzard obviously needs to increase revenue to replace the lost subscriptions, but I think they would be better spending their time creating an environment were people want to return not fleecing its long term customers out of another $15.
This just feels like the average British High Street after all the big shops have moved to the out of town developments and they Blizzard are left with Charity Shops, Pound Shops and Bookies. This just smacks of sheer desperation. They need to try a lot harder to get me to dip into my pockets.


  1. Let's say Joe buys a helm for $15. How, in any way, has Blizzard fleeced Joe?

  2. Joe is being fleeced because Blizzard are the only software company having their cake and eating it.

    The subscription is for the maintenance of the servers during the year. The $50 for the next expansion pays for the development time and the patches. $15 for fluff is fleecing the customer in my opinion, and the general consensus seems to back me up, that the helms are worth between $1 and $5. Therefore $15 is fleecing the customer, and Joe and his money are easily parted.