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Celestial Steed

Starry Eyed for my new Steed

So massive QQ goes here, all I’m seeing all over the front pages of MMO-Champion is a bunch of snivelling kids crying that there’s a mount going to be sold for real money, and that it’s going to “ruin the game QQ”. Guess what, Blizzard is a business, guess what businesses try to do: make a profit. I’d rather they sold a mount or a pet or something else vanity that doesn’t matter in the slightest than selling some Sword of Over Nine Thousand Lies with stats equal to that of Frostmourne on crack that will actually, seriously break the game.

It’s a mount, it’ll never serve a better purpose in a raid or group that any other mount won’t. It doesn’t buff your stats or your skills or make you any different other than to say “look, my mount is slightly different to yours”. Oh and QQ because you spent six months farming Baron Rivendare’s corpsehorse and now these people can get an item just as rare for free. Again, so what? You still have Baron Rivendare’s horse, all my shiny Celestial Steed tells people is that I have more money than sense and I waste it on vanity things.

People claiming that it’s a “slippery slope” need to step back a bit and realise where this game has been going for well over a year. Blizzard are changing their focus from the hardcore gamers to the wider market of casual players who might not have all the free time in the world due to holding down jobs and families and who knows what else. You will not find a business out there that will skip on such a huge opportunity (several million players and subscriptions) just to keep the old market happy. Games change, times change, markets change, Blizzard needs to find a way to keep the game fresh and profitable, and if that means appealing to ‘casuals’ then yes, and if that means selling vanity items then yes, because I guarantee, every single person who has QQed about the Celestial Steed would have QQed far more if they’d got this message:

“World of Warcraft is no longer profitable, so we’re ceasing service. lolsorry.”

Right, so they’re already turning over billions of dollars, of course they are. But they’re also employing thousands of people to manage 12 million Battle.net accounts across thousands of servers using lots of big shiny stats that I don’t understand (source), and that is going to cost quite a bit. Blizzard also needs to develop and keep track of several other franchises, Diablo, Starcraft, Warcraft, MMO-X, anything else they have in the works. A business of that size is going to want to squeeze every penny out of its products, if it didn’t it’d be a terrible business.

Just be grateful that they’re squeezing the casuals for vanity items instead of selling them items that a hardcorer might spends months grinding for.

And yes. I’ll be buying the Steed. Just because I can.

Casual.

Just to edit in, the Steed is £17.00. I want it.

Just to edit in, again. I GOT IT. Sexy.

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  1. April 16, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    Loved the post, almost as if I wrote it myself. I agree with your PoV completely.

  2. April 17, 2010 at 10:23 pm

    First of all, I love your blog name and secondly, I agree people are free to spend their money in any way they choose. Whilst I am currently celestial steed free, I have bought one or two mini-pets from the Blizzard site but my only fear is that Blizzard (like any sensible company) will start to make more and more of cool non essential stuff only available through the store.

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