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7-14-2011 @ 3:43PM
Alright, Artificial, I really like where you've gone with this!"The only way to make a "slippery slope" argument valid is to demonstrate that the current decision leads *inevitably* to the later thing you don't want." -ArtificalGiven your guidelines, let's try to "prove" that by introducing one premium service - of any kind - that Blizzard has caused a slippery slope, find evidence that the slippery slope has occurred, and that it will continue in perpetuity.*Tinfoil Hat On*1 - Blizzard introduces Realm Transfers (or was it faction transfers that came first? I can't remember), augmenting profits.2 - Now that Blizzard has successfully introduced one premium service, its future sales targets are similarly increased. In order to meet those targets it has to introduce additional premium services.3 - Faction Transfer introduced, also successful, so future sales targets are made both more firm based on existing sales data of the prior services and higher based on the expectation that Blizzard will find additional services to charge.4 - Non-Combat Pets go on sale, wildly successful. Shareholders cheer. Gross sales targets continue to rise. Bobby Kotick takes a swim in his Money Bin.5 - ...I think I can stop here.*Tinfoil Hat Off*By introducing one premium service Blizzard is obligated to grow its sales going forward, and to do so is somewhat limited. It cannot charge higher subscription fees, already being the most expensive online MMO, and it can only release expansions as development permits. Premium services for vanity items and in-game conveniences make the most sense.This most recent service, therefore, is not a "slippery slope" in itself, but further evidence of the pressure on Blizzard to meet sales goals. If the report of a decrease in subscribers are accurate, SW:TOR on the horizon, and RIFT showing it has some fighting spirit, that pressure is only increased to draw greater profits from the remaining customer base.-----I'm not sure this "proves" anything, because there are a lot of underlying assumptions here, but I do think the slippery slope discussion has compelling arguments, and reasonable conversation can be had with a little effort.I'm curious to hear your thoughts, Artificial, if you're still around.
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