Crossing the Line

I’m gonna just jump right into the meat of this post. Blizzard has recently announced the new “Guardian Cub” pet that will be available at the pet store. You can read about it here. It will also be the first in-game “trade-able” pet, meaning you can purchase it and trade it in-game with anyone. You can even sell it on the AH.

As I was reading the blue post it seemed kind of like a nice idea until I came to this question:

Q: Could I put the Guardian Cub up on the auction house to try to make some gold if I wanted to?

While our goal is to offer players alternative ways to add a Pet Store pet to their collection, we’re ok with it if some players choose to use the Guardian Cub as a safe and secure way to try to acquire a little extra in-game gold without turning to third-party gold-selling services. However, please keep in mind that there’s never any guarantee that someone will purchase what you put up for sale in the auction house, or how much they’ll pay for it. Also, it’s important to note that we take a firm stance against buying gold from outside sources because in most cases, the gold these companies offer has been stolen from compromised accounts. (You can read more about our stance here.) While some players might be able to acquire some extra gold by putting the Guardian Cub in the auction house, that’s preferable to players contributing to the gold-selling “black market” and account theft.

I’m shocked. I’m flabbergasted. The ability to “trade” this pet for in-game gold is no different from what 3rd party gold spammers do. It’s INDIRECTLY selling gold. Blizzard might not be handing you gold directly for money, but they are providing ways to make gold with real-life cash which is something that has ALWAYS been frowned upon. Blizzard is no longer any different than the gold spammers who troll in Trade Chat.

I’m starting a boycott with this pet. I’m not gonna buy it. I’m not gonna feed the machine. If Blizzard makes a good buck off this pet, what’s next? Mounts? Tokens? Boss Kills? We need to stop this train before it turns into a wreck.

Advertisements

16 thoughts on “Crossing the Line

  1. Between this and the mechanics of Diablo 3, I think Blizzard realized it cant beat the gold spammers, so they joined them. I dont mind because it’s a first step towards being able to sell gold ourselves. Would be nice to get real money for virtual gold.

    • I just don’t think it’s something I can cope with. I earned my gold in-game. I worked for it. I farmed for it. I played the AH for it. Buying gold with $$ just feels dirty. Not to mention it decreases the value of gold in-game. It’s gonna cause inflation for server economies. Things will go up in price.

      • This doesn’t change that, people who want to buy gold are already doing it. What you don’t like is already happening in your game and in your economy.

  2. The problem with gold selling is not the actual gold selling but the activities that go along with this activity (farming in quest areas, account hacking, spamming in trade chat, etc.) Yes this is the first step for blizzard providing gold selling services but gold selling via the developer (which has been implemented with great success in many other MMOs) has none of these negative externalities and actually works very well to combat them. Less support calls caused by all those 3rd party gold selling issues and your blizzard dev team actually getting the money from gold selling (which means more money put back into making content for the game) all these benefits are on the horizon for blizzard’s baby step into this arena.

    If you hate the gold spammers you should be supporting this action

    • Gold spammers will never go away. Ever. They are here to stay and I can accept that. I don’t think Blizzard selling trade-able items will keep them from hacking accounts. They always will.

      This change will cause an inflation for in-game gold. Prices will go up. Gold will be more accessible for players. It will become “easier” to make. It won’t be good for server economies.

      • Actually that’s not what has been seen in other MMOs that have implemented this developer provided gold purchasing. People choose to no longer do business with 3rd party gold sellers because a legitimate means is available to them and profits plummet and they’re driven out of the game.

        Gold spammers/sellers are there only because of one reason, there’s a demand for their services and they’re able to make profit because of it. People will always want to exchange cash for in game grinding time, and there’s nothing illegitimate about that. Person A might have plenty of free time to grind dailies, farm mats, etc. while person B only has a smaller window of time to play the game but they want to enjoy those same aspects of the game that having the gold to spend provides. That’s what you will never stop, but what you can stop is that money going to 3rd party sellers and all the negative externalities that causes and instead directing that money to the developer and all the positive externalities that will cause.

      • What you need to do is disassociate the two activities from each other and understand what their current place in the game is.

        People buying gold: This is currently happening and is not negatively impacting you

        3rd parties selling gold: This is currently happening and is negatively impacting you.

        What blizzard is getting into (and they’re very late to the party with, this is nothing new) is getting rid of the 2nd issue and replacing it with something that will benefit you. Not only are they combating something that is currently a major drag on their bottom line (customer service issues caused by gold sellers) and thus making the game cost you more and / or not allowing more money to go into making more content. But they’re replacing it with something that actually will improve their bottom line, its a 2x improvement for the game.

  3. I think this is actually going to be a good thing. It is going to further drive down the prices of purchased gold so eventually the gold sellers will deem it no longer profitable to continue their operations. What is it now, $3/1k? This will tank the gold seller’s market. That should actually help stabilize the server since there won’t be services working around the clock to just pump more cash into the system. I don’t think that it will even drive down values of things any more than normal. If people are buying these from other players, all it is doing is moving money around within the existing economy, not adding to it. It is when you start dumping new money into a system that economies get ruined (e.g. Federal Reserve).

    However, I disagree with WWE’s suggestion about the proceeds going toward “content for the game” unless they were referring to another game. I doubt WoW is going to be getting any additional project funding or an increased budget anytime soon.

    • “However, I disagree with WWE’s suggestion about the proceeds going toward “content for the game” unless they were referring to another game. I doubt WoW is going to be getting any additional project funding or an increased budget anytime soon.”

      All economy is global, anything that affect’s blizzard’s bottom line negatively will end up being reflected in either higher customer costs or lower product value (content). Anything that improves blizzard’s bottom line will reflect in the inverse to keep and stay competitive in the market.

      Its the same thing as “targeted” taxes or regulations, the costs always end up with the customer.

      • “All economy is global, anything that affect’s blizzard’s bottom line negatively will end up being reflected in either higher customer costs or lower product value (content). Anything that improves blizzard’s bottom line will reflect in the inverse to keep and stay competitive in the market.”

        Fair enough, though I still don’t believe that the World of Warcraft franchise itself will see an increased budget for production. New revenue streams will put money into new development (Titan?) and hopefully dividends. I personally feel that the only way WoW will be impacted is when the company finally feels that it it no longer worth keeping active.

  4. The bigger issue for me is the fact pets are no longer Bind on Account. I suspect this will now be the same for all Blizzard purchases, including mounts. I can even see them extending this to a single pet with any Collector’s Edition Expansion set.

    Needless to say, I’m not spending that amount of money to gear my alts.

    • “The bigger issue for me is the fact pets are no longer Bind on Account. I suspect this will now be the same for all Blizzard purchases, including mounts. I can even see them extending this to a single pet with any Collector’s Edition Expansion set.”

      Now THAT is something that didn’t even cross my mind, and I think a lot of folk overlooked that tidbit. I doubt that would apply to the CE pets, but yea, I could see this affecting all purchasable vanity pets down the line.

  5. Pingback: A Guardian Cub For Your Real Money and Your Fake Gold | Apple Cider Mage

  6. The trading card pets are the same way. You can buy a trading card and try to sell the mount/pet for money in-game (even post it on the AH).

    These pets, however, are something common (rather than something rare like the TCG pets/mounts), and so I expect them to not sell very well on the AH after the first week or so (if anyone resorts to buying them on the AH instead of with RL money in the first place).

  7. Another thing to note is Blizzard isn’t ADDING gold to the game – all gold is in the hands of the players. There won’t be inflation because there is no extra gold. The person buying the pet on the AH will have to farm for their own gold, which then changes hands to the person selling the cub.

  8. There’s a post recently made by Blizzard discussing their logic behind this move, and its specifically as a tool against gold sellers; an experiment in the fight, to see how it goes. What’s interesting about the post is that they said that most of the gold sold by gold sellers is now from account hacking and no longer from farming.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s