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Blizzard Introduces Buying in-Game WoW Items

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 63 comments
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World of Warcraft now supports microtransactions by providing two pets to purchase and use.

It had to happen eventually: Blizzard implemented the microtransaction scheme into its crazy-popular MMORPG, World of Warcraft. This means that players can purchase in-game goods via Blizzard's online store using real-world cash. But in order to use the pet, players will need to merge their WoW account with a Battle.net account.

Generally, microtransactions are used in free MMORPGs, offering basic gaming without a subscription fee but offering premium items for a cash price. However, today Blizzard introduced two items WoW subscribers can now purchase: the Pandaren Monk and Lil' K.T., a miniature litch. Both items will cost $10 each, however Blizzard is donating $5 of each monk sold to the Make-a-Wish Foundation until December 31, 2009 at 11:59 PDT.

According to the forum post, the Pandaren Monk is a martial arts expert "who's here to help celebrate the upcoming fifth anniversary of World of Warcraft." As for the miniature lich, this pet supposedly resembles the legendary lord of Naxxramas, Kei'Thuzad. "Lil’ K.T. has a diabolical laugh and wields true power at his bony fingertips, randomly wreaking icy havoc on critters who dare to cross his path," the description reads.

Currently the pets are located in the Collectibles - Pet Store section.

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  • 13 Hide
    insaneclowngod , November 4, 2009 10:17 PM
    I can see the next update to this being "Gear For Those Who Don't Want To Raid, Stop Wasting Time Playing BUY GEAR NOW!"
    I think this is fine as long as the items that can be purchased remain inconsequential to actual game play.
Other Comments
  • 13 Hide
    insaneclowngod , November 4, 2009 10:17 PM
    I can see the next update to this being "Gear For Those Who Don't Want To Raid, Stop Wasting Time Playing BUY GEAR NOW!"
    I think this is fine as long as the items that can be purchased remain inconsequential to actual game play.
  • 5 Hide
    Glorian , November 4, 2009 10:17 PM
    Kinda scared me a bit, cause buying in game item would severely imbalance the game in something like WoW, but its useless things that have no bearing on player outcome, so it shouldn't be a problem.
  • 1 Hide
    hennnry , November 4, 2009 10:34 PM
    So now let's see how those gold farm haters can justify the morality of companies doing this...
  • 2 Hide
    precariousgray , November 4, 2009 10:40 PM
    Blizzard: HEY, GUYS, NOW YOU CAN BY USELESS PIXELS DIRECTLY FROM US! KEEP IN MIND THOUGH, YOU'LL STILL BE BANNED FOR BUYING THINGS FOR REAL CURRENCY FROM OTHER PLAYERS!
  • 8 Hide
    skit75 , November 4, 2009 11:19 PM
    GlorianKinda scared me a bit, cause buying in game item would severely imbalance the game in something like WoW, but its useless things that have no bearing on player outcome, so it shouldn't be a problem.

    This is the beginning of the end actually. Ask the folks still playing SWG how well the "harmless" microtransaction gear from the TCG went over. It started off with seemingly useless crap such as the items mentioned above and has evolved into a downward spiral of "lets see how much more money we can milk from this game before it's toast" I'm sure from a business perspective, it is a good money maker for an aging title but it has left a bad taste in my mouth as a player. I just lose all interest in a game when this happens. These gimicks take time away from real developement of the game, especially in its later years. I flat out refuse to even try games like Cabal and Hero specifically because of the that business model. If this is the future of gaming.../puke I guess I won't be a gamer anymore.

    P.S. I've never played WoW but was a 66-month veteran over at SWG.
  • -2 Hide
    nforce4max , November 4, 2009 11:37 PM
    Those prices are just to high to justify in mu opinion. Don't they realize that most common folk aka us gamers have to cut back due to every thing else going up while maintaining upgrades. The prices at the local super market and the bills are criminal.
  • 0 Hide
    Onyx2291 , November 4, 2009 11:55 PM
    Oh well, just cosmetic useless stuff. People will buy them, I won't. Same as people getting pets when they buy the collector's edition of the game.
  • -5 Hide
    redgarl , November 5, 2009 12:07 AM
    Phhhh... in what this is different from China gold farming industry...?

    Stupid game, you need to be a moron to lose your time playing WoW... like the guy who missed the birth of his child for the sake of playing WoW.

    MMORPG are a cancer. In a single player experience you got a story, an experience... in a MMO you got gameplay only. Gameplay could be fun at some point, but it become an habit really that can affect your everyday life faster than you think. I think it can even be worst than drugs.

    I was addicted to Counter-Strike for almost 2 years. I learned my lesson and never picked another online game... until Street Fighter 4 which I stopped playing after a 4 months frenzy.
  • 1 Hide
    rodney_ws , November 5, 2009 12:11 AM
    All the more reason I'm excited about The Witcher 2.
  • 0 Hide
    redgarl , November 5, 2009 12:15 AM
    rodney_wsAll the more reason I'm excited about The Witcher 2.


    My most anticipated title since Zelda Oricana of Time... it's been a while since a game really built a hype this big in my life.

    The first game is easily the best PC RPG since Fallout 2.
  • -4 Hide
    rodney_ws , November 5, 2009 12:16 AM
    I own the first game... have it installed and properly patched, but can't play it until ATI fixes my 5850 drivers :/ 
  • 0 Hide
    JonathanDeane , November 5, 2009 12:30 AM
    My one and only question... Doesn't Blizzard already make enough money? I think they make something like 200 Million gross a month from that game.... (Thats the like a block buster movie every month) I understand its not with out its over head so its not all profits but damn lol

    Of course people if they object will not buy this so it hurts no one in the end.

    In a way the only people who might get mad about something like this is people waiting for Diablo 3 or StarCraft 2. I am sure that those are completely different teams and in the end the profits from stuff like this may make those games better.
  • -1 Hide
    seboj , November 5, 2009 12:42 AM
    And so it begins.
  • 1 Hide
    kvn00 , November 5, 2009 1:01 AM
    WoW is the perfect game for these kinds of money schemes. WoW has become a Sims Online: Renaissance Faire expansion pack. I can imagine the many WoW male players buying a pet for their online girlfriends. What Blizz has created is heretical to most gamers, but hey, they're milking it all the way down to gamers' Hell.

    But release Diablo 3 already and you'll be forgiven for your sins, my son!
  • 2 Hide
    gr33nf00t , November 5, 2009 1:09 AM
    Yo, Dawg! We heard you like to pay money to play a video game, so we put a purchase in your purchase, so you can pay while you pay!

    Seriously, this is maybe a tad on the ridiculous side. That, or WoW is just going to make the slide to a free to play MMO so Blizzard can replace it with another pay to play MMO.
  • 0 Hide
    cekasone , November 5, 2009 1:40 AM
    "Both items will cost $10 each, however Blizzard is donating $5 of each monk sold to the Make-a-Wish Foundation until December 31, 2009 at 11:59 PDT."

    Come 2010, Blizzard is going to pocket every cent and not give a damn about the make a wish foundation.
  • 0 Hide
    Maxor127 , November 5, 2009 2:07 AM
    So you pay $15 a month for a game and extra for items?
  • -5 Hide
    Dave_69 , November 5, 2009 2:13 AM
    But does it support Crysis?
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