WAR and the $10 level

…you knew I couldn’t resist this one:

With the Skaven waiting in the wings, Warhammer Online’s 1.4.0 patch delivers a few tantalizing goodies right here and now. The focus of the patch is two new “RvR packs” that can be picked up in the EA Store. For players looking for a leg up in their RvR advancement, the progression pack offers faster Renown Rank climbing as well as an increased cap of level 100. On the flip side, players looking for fun, fluff and fast travel can opt for the personality pack, which includes new dyes, quick mounts, barbershop tokens and vanity pets. Of course, you could always drop $10 for a free level instead.

$10 dollars for a level.

So…the value of a level has been determined to be 66% of the total cost a user pays on a game per month. Whatever. I say “whatever” because, like I said before, I no longer have an interest in the outcome. I’m extremely curious of how this is going to end. They could have charged $60 or $2 and I would have had the same reaction to it. Clearly the path is set for WAR to go F2P in the very near future…so keep an eye out for that as well.

These guys are the first to actually sell levels, as far as I know anyway. This is essentially selling player progression and all that includes…which, IMHO, touches the third rail of micro-transactions: giving those with $$ a play advantage over those that don’t have $$. My thought right now is that selling levels is the wrong direction to go. Why not just cut the middle man and sell max level characters? Why not just cut leveling altogether and stop pretending that is an essential part of an MMORPG?

I’ve stopped really caring about WAR for a while now, however; every step that is taken with the F2P model is watched by others in the industry. My issue is that soon, these games will be shells of their former selves. All the exploration and mystery taken out at the swipe of a credit card.

D out.

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