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10-11-2011 @ 11:29AM
FIRST: Sorry Peebers, I hope I'll be the last to piggy-back your post :-/SECOND: Regardless of whether I agree or not with what Blizzard has done since its launch, it's undeniable that World of Warcraft has remained so successful for so many years because Blizzard is willing to eat their own words and adapt to the market as it continuously evolves.The MMO business is unlike any other in the gaming industry in that if you launch a game and leave it unchanged (save for extra levels/dungeons/whatever) you will quickly fall by the wayside as others add new innovations.THIRD: Mention was made to RIFT giving free Realm Transfers. Many of Blizzard's paid services are for the game's benefit moreso than for extra revenue. Blizzard cares about the immersion of WoW and each server's community. Realm transfers cost $25 USD not because it's hard for Blizzard to do it nor because they are greedy. They cost so much because if not for the charge a good number of people would jump around servers all willy-nilly whether it be because your guild on one server is stuck on say Ragnaros one week so you go to your friend's server to down Rag then go back or to buy something cheap on one auction house and go back to your home server and sell it high. MMO economies are hard enough to properly maintain without the latter example.Specifically as to this pet, whether we agree or disagree it can at least be said they have a reason for doing it. When World of Warcraft launched the MMO genre was still in infancy, as was gold selling. Years have been spent combating gold/item selling. If you can think of it, it has probably been tried. Then a few Free-2-Play games said "hey, why don't we just ALLOW people to buy gold?" But they did it via usable in-game items. MMO game items are alcohol, and gold sellers are the mob in the 1930s. How did we stop the mob? We made their businesses legal. When an MMO expects gold to be bought they can control it, when they can control it economies improve.Diablo III is pioneering this new outlook and me thinks that's how all online games are going to end up being. Whether right or wrong, this is what works and I don't blame Blizzard for all they do, if they hadn't implemented all these things WoW would have fallen from top dog a long time ago.
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