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Reader Comments (24)

Posted: Aug 4th 2011 7:10PM Faction 3 said

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I'll be the first to admit to purchasing Virtual Goods. No major shopping spree, just a couple bucks. Not those stupid-ass sparkle horses that WoW has either.

Posted: Aug 4th 2011 7:23PM SocksForYou said

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@Faction 3 I thought the idea of paid WoW mounts was obnoxious at first but it's like $25 for a vanity mount that you can access on any new or existing character, forever.

$25 I think buys you a pair of socks in Eve. Socks that can be destroyed.

In any event, I don't buy cash shop items in subscription games.

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Posted: Aug 4th 2011 8:11PM Raikulxox said

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@SocksForYou Items you buy from the NEX can't be destroyed in EVE. They were originally planned that way, but CCP went back on the idea (or so it was that way anywas. No idea if they changed since I last read up on it).
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Posted: Aug 4th 2011 7:31PM Nenene said

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"VGMarket's data show console games with online play accounting for 51 percent of the purchases"

I am Jack's complete lack of surprise.

Posted: Aug 4th 2011 7:41PM JoeH42 said

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Sounds like they made a rather half-assed effort at this poll. 1,000 subjects isn't really that much. Seems more like they just wanted to put form a minimal effort so they could have something to write/talk about regardless of it's accuracy.

Posted: Aug 4th 2011 7:58PM EndDream said

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@JoeH42 actually 1000 is more than statistically significant.
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Posted: Aug 5th 2011 1:51AM rhorle said

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@EndDream

While 1,000 might be a fine number. It says 1,000 drawn from a VGmarkets database. So what info did they use to pull just those 1,000? How good is there database?

It sounds much more likely that their database and "pulling" criteria favors consoles. 1,000 also isn't that statistically significant when you think about the larger numbers of transactions that take place. A 1.000 of 10,000 might tell you something. A 1,000 of 100 million might not tell you what you think it does.
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Posted: Aug 4th 2011 7:50PM HereticalPenguin said

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Video games in general = purely virtual, intangible goods. Thus I see nothing wrong with a little cash shop spending if you're already willing to buy video games in the first place.

I've never bought more than a couple small items from cash shops (a few bucks max), but yes, I also admit to being a virtual goods purchaser :P

Posted: Aug 4th 2011 9:19PM Utakata said

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One in three that do purchase virtual goods as opposed two in three that don't....

...it's all about the way you spin it. Just saying.

Posted: Aug 5th 2011 1:15AM Space Cobra said

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@Utakata

Meh, 1 in 3 is just like 3 out of 9. Or one-third. Or 33.33...% out of 100%.

One-thirds a pretty big number some other stats:

1 in 3 mobile phones in the US are smartphones

1 in 3 American kids are considered overweight by the American Heart Association.

1 in 3 Americans don't know who Glenn Beck is (and LUCKY them!) :D

It's still a pretty significant number, even if the smaller.
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Posted: Aug 5th 2011 12:45PM Utakata said

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@Space Cobra

I am looking at the cup 2 thirds empty. :)
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Posted: Aug 4th 2011 9:25PM Ehra said

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I've bought plenty of cosmetic items in my time playing LOTRO and Guild Wars (heck, I just recently bought the Winds of Change costumes for both myself and my girlfriend).

And I agree with HereticalPenguin about the funny distinction people make between paying for virtual clothes and paying for access to a virtual world. Penny-Arcade did a great podcast/comic on that very topic :)

Posted: Aug 4th 2011 9:28PM DeadlyAccurate said

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Bought a permanent mount in Runes of Magic and spent $5 in the Wizard 101 cash shop. The former doesn't have a subscription at all, and the latter offers a $5 sub for the first month, so I figured I'd spend another $5, the equivalent of a month's subscription. I've also bought cards for Legends of Norrath.

Posted: Aug 4th 2011 10:49PM (Unverified) said

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People buying gold from anyone with the name of Frjhiutsdfg, cdskjtghiu, uiowefhuiawfg, deserves to have their account hacked and their poodle victimized by the neighbors pit bull!

Posted: Aug 5th 2011 12:38AM Khalus said

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I'll admit to buying gold in WoW and selling my account several times. It was times when I had decided to return from square-one, and everyone knows that even the most basic of items on the AH are so damned overpriced. The average player can't afford any of it, cause the gold is just not available in such quantities that early on. And I'm talking like level 5-10 green items are going for several to 20+ gold a piece.

So yeah I've bought gold to purchase the largest bags possible and some better starting gear to get going a little faster. Later on though, once you get into WotLK and beyond, gold is so abundant there is no need.

Posted: Aug 5th 2011 7:38PM Bladerunner83 said

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@Khalus

" And I'm talking like level 5-10 green items are going for several to 20+ gold a piece. "

You stole Blizzard's product and sold it for your personal gain, then you try to justify your actions by saying the game's economy is messed up. You are the reason this happens. If people earned their own gold in game, then the economy would be balanced; Your still going to have people that post outrageous prices, but the entire market will not inflate, (+20 gold for a level 5 item). Straight forward way to state it, " You are a thief, a real life loot ninja." Sell things that belong to you; You're not entitled to their goods.
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Posted: Aug 5th 2011 5:22AM dudes said

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Second Life's oxygen is the virtual goods and the markets. It keeps the Linden Dollar as a real world economy, especially when selling L$ for real world money's.

Posted: Aug 5th 2011 6:14AM Seffrid said

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While it used to be the case that most F2P gamers didn't buy anything in the cash shops, I don't believe this is the case today and this survey supports that belief.

Developers have learnt how to strike a better balance (from their point of view) between fluff items that only a few will pay large sums for and useful items that most will pay something for, while avoiding the pitfall of requiring some essential items to be bought for the game to be playable as that would deter a lot of people from playing.

As a result I suspect the proportion of F2P gamers who are spending at least as much as a monthly subscription or even more on supposedly free to play games is very much higher than it was when developers were first "testing the water" with the F2P business model. The fact that they're all jumping on the F2P bandwagon can only be because they're now raising a lot more money through F2P than they would through P2P, often because the games are too shallow, cloned, or bugged for players to want to commit to a monthly subscription.

For most players there is no longer such a concept as "free to play", and rightly so. No-one is entitled to a free ride in life, developers have to fund a game somehow and it's right that all those who play it should pay for it. It's now all down to how you pay, and some prefer to cover everything in a single monthly payment, some prefer to pay separately for each individual thing within a game, and some are happy to do both!

What is clearly apparent is that regardless of how they do it, more gamers than hitherto are now prepared to pay one way or the other and that can only be a good thing for the viability of the industry.

Posted: Aug 5th 2011 7:52AM HiroProtagonist7 said

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VGMarket.com looks like some sort of shady late 90s website done by the owner's nephew. If you look at the iterations of the site via archive.org's wayback machine, the one thing the sites have in common is a praise quote from "Scott E" who was supposedly an executive VP at EA. Search results turned up nothing for a Scott E and EA except for a UI developer named Scott E Huber that worked for EA's studio in the same town VGMarket is from.

They sell marketing data starting at $5000. Give me a break, no EA executive would look twice at that site. It may be where they go if they want a little study with specific results, but VGMarket is by no means a player.

The study was commissioned by Playspan - "Monetization as a service" I wonder what type of data results they wanted to see?

Posted: Aug 5th 2011 1:26PM Deadalon said

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1 in 3 does not mean all and every day. Thats what will happen after BLizzard launches Diablo3 - no matter if the game supports it or not. Officially it has been legalised when a big gaming developer does this to 1 of their game. And it increases it in every single game out there to the point of no return.

3rd party websites will thrive for the next few years. You can not take a stand against it in 1 game but allow it in another - on the same Battlenet account. Thats a joke and shows double standards and just horrible ethic and moral values.

Nothing positive about Diablo 3 real life AH. Find ways to minimise the chance of virtual world trading. Bind everything to account (can still switch between own characters or trade within a group when items drop). Then follow the account trading with simple IP adress checks and ban all accounts if owner cant verify hes the orginal owner. Thats the only way doing this.

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