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Microtransactions: Final Thoughts

The purchasable minipets continue to cause a storm across the blogosphere. I’ve already mentioned them here and here, but rather than offer another analysis on the Pandaren Monk as I did with Lil’ K.T. I’m just going to offer one finally post on it and then I’m leaving these two alone.

I don’t care what fears people have about Blizzard offering other things in the future (they can go ahead and put T5695 gear up for sale for all I care), as far as I’m concerned that is in no way a valid argument for anything.

The only argument I have found that is valid to any degree is not so much an argument as it is a failure to understand: How can you justify spending $20 on two pets?

To even things out a bit, let’s forget about the $5 donation to the MaWF and just look at it as a flat $20 price tag here with no further bells and whistles.

Cost Analysis
Actual Cost: One Pet
Most people are looking at this: $10 = 1 pet

What most of them are failing to see is that it actually works out to this: $10 = 50 pets

Which means the actual cost is: $0.20 = 1 pet

The reason for this is because each of these pets is a BoA item that is mailed to every character you have and every character you make in the future. Each account is able to have 50 total characters across all servers, and every one of them gets this pet for the same fee. Now, not everyone is so much an altoholic as my wife and I (both of us have had to delete toons for having reached the 50 toon limit), so not everyone is going to be able to see it that way. But, some people are as bad as I am, or even worse, and they actually get an even better deal than twenty cents a pop.

For the sake of consistency though, we’ll go with a maximum of 50 toons.

Actual Cost: Both Pets
Alright, lets open it up a bit and throw that second pet in there.

Most people see this: $20 = 2 pets

What they miss: $20 = 100 pets

Actual Cost: $0.20 = 1 pet

Now, the math here obviously comes out to the exact same thing because the cost is the same in both cases. We double the cost, but we also double the quantity purchased.

Perspective
To put that into perspective a bit, let us change what we’re purchasing to nails instead of vanity pets. As with any example, it’s not going to be perfect and any trolls can come by and chew on my nails if they want. Yes, nails are real world items that can serve a purpose and be functional, but that’s not the point. Read with the intent to understand, not with the intent to respond.

Example: We’re going to say that you just bought a beautiful Asian painting. The details of the painting aren’t important, but if you’re really interested I’ll tell you that it depicts a monk. You need to hang it on your wall, but you don’t have any nails. So you go to the store to buy a nail and find out that they don’t sell nails individually, they only come in two varieties and they only come in boxes of 50. Either nail would work, but the picture will hang a bit differently with one than it will with the other, and both ways appeal to you.

You aren’t sure which nail is going to suit you the best, but you know that you could probably find uses for either type. You also know that you only need a single nail, but having several might come in handy later on down the road. If you could buy a single nail for $0.20 then you would prefer to do that, but sadly the store doesn’t allow such purchases. So you have to decide whether you want one type of nail, or both types of nails, and you have to deal with the fact that you may very well be buying more nails than you’ll ever use.

My decision was to buy both types of nails and see which style of hanging appealed to me more, knowing that I could change between both styles of hanging whenever I wanted to by switching out one type of nail for the other.

Conclusion
The point of me breaking this down for you isn’t to try to convince you to change your mind on whether or not to buy them, the point is to open your mind a bit to help you see a clearer picture of what you’re actually buying. In essence, you aren’t just going to a store to buy yourself a nail, you’re going to a store and buying a box of nails. Whether or not you decide to use them all is up to you. You may only need a single nail to hang up that nice picture on your wall, but you’re buying a whole box that’s available for you to use if you have a want or need to do so.

How you justify the cost is dependent on how you chose to look at it. Did you spend $20 on a single nail, or did you spend $20 on a box that has 100 nails in it? The answer is up to you; it’s all in how you choose to look at it.

I didn’t spend $20 to buy my wife 2 pets, I spent $20 to buy my wife 100 pets, and she’s enjoying every one.

 
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Posted by on November 16, 2009 in World of Warcraft

 

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Vanity Pet Analysis: Lil’ K.T.

After buying both of the new vanity pets for my wife that I mentioned yesterday, we took a look at them both to decide what we thought about them. Initially I was almost certain that K.T. was the one for me as I’ve always been a fan of liches and necromantics and such, and pandas aren’t really my thing.

So pulled out the panda first expecting him to the weaker of the two. As it turned out, he was actually pretty cool. Every minute or so he pulls out some wicked Kung Fu moves to show you and he makes cool little martial arts noises and such. We were actually surprisingly pleased with him and that just made us even more ready to see what good old K.T. had to show us.

I knew from reading the description when I bought them that K.T. would occasionally attack critters, so we took a character into Stormwind and stood there amidst the squirrels waiting for him to show us what he’s got. We waited, and waited, and…waited…and then logged out. The little sucker decided to use his freezing skills on us or something because he didn’t do a blasted thing! We were both rather disappointed in the little lich, but we liked the panda enough that we just stuck with him instead.

When I mentioned on twitter today that we had not been impressed with him other people chimed in saying that KT had worked just fine for them and that they had a blast killing critters with him. I was pretty stumped at that point, wondering if perhaps ours had been bugged or something. So when lunch time rolled around I went ahead and logged into my wife’s account since she was out of town with her mom for the day. I rolled a new human toon and ran to Goldshire to pick up the pets from the mailbox, knowing that there were chickens, cows, dear, fawn, and rabbits in abundance in the area. You can find chickens right there near the mailbox, so that was my first target. I

I pulled out K.T. and stood there waiting. I waited for a couple of minutes, knowing that the Pandaren Monk would have done something in that time period and got disgruntled. I moved on to another location assuming that perhaps he just didn’t like killing things in towns. I found a cow and rabbit together and parked myself there while I tabbed out to check Twitter for any other replies. I found that some people had triggered him in cities, so I was stumped again. Then I heard a nice, wicked laugh so I tabbed back over to WoW just in time to see a rabbit get frozen and about half a second later the ice busted and the rabbit was dead, prompting another wicked laugh from Lil’ K.T.

From there I went to other animals trying to get it to trigger and hoping to get screen shots of it as well. The animations were happening pretty fast and I was in the middle of rotating camera angles and suck to try to get good shots as the critters moved around, so the shots I did manage to get weren’t all that great. But, I did manage to snag a few for you. Before I had to go back to work I managed to get two chickens, a rabbit, and a cow all killed with Lil’ KT. The cow was the best seeing the massive ice block show up around it before it died. But, I didn’t catch the screen shot on that one before he was dead.

Here is the letter that you get when you pull K.T. out of the mailbox:
kt

Here’s a a shot of the first little chicken that met his frosty death, just as KT froze him:
freeze

And here’s one of the dead corpse after the freeze effect ended:
dead

You don’t see any debuff or anything show up on the critter, you just see it get hit with a frost spell, frozen solid, and then falling over dead when the freeze effect breaks. But the casting animation and the wicked sounds from K.T. make it a fun experience.

All in all, the time between his freezes was somewhat disappointing as I had to wait several minutes even between multiple critters that were right next to one another. But, the info on the pet does mention that it is random, so maybe the numbers were just against me today or something. If he is capable of doing it more often or while you’re running near a critter or something then he might be cooler than he seemed. In the long run I was still pleased with the little guy, but somewhat disappointed as well. I wish he’d be a little more aggressive in his critter killing. ;)

 
6 Comments

Posted by on November 5, 2009 in World of Warcraft

 

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New BoA Chests: Stats and Costs

Alright, there is a lot of buzz going on right now about BoA Chest pieces coming out in 3.2. As such, I went and did a little research to find the information for you.

I see no reason to waste time with further chatter, so on with the details!

Does Bonus Exp From BoA Chests Stack With BoA Shoulders?
Yes.

It has been confirmed that the 10% experience bonuses offered by the new BoA Chests do stack with the BoA Shoulders.

There you have it, +20% experience when wearing these two pieces together. If you use the Recruit A Friend bonus, then you get 320% experience total. If you do not use RAF, but you do have Rested Experience saved up, then you get +120% experience.

But no, RAF and Rested do not stack themselves, so as of 3.2 you can either do 320% bonus exp with RAF plus both Heirloom pieces, or 120% if you have both pieces and are rested but are not using RAF.

[Update: Apparently the cost plan fell through or something got changed. The cost of all BoA Chests is currently 40 Emblems of Heroism. No information released yet on whether this was an error, intentional, plans to be changed, etc.]

Show Me The Goods!
Without further delay, here are the new Heirloom Chest pieces:

NAME TYPE VENDOR LOC COST NAMESAKE
Tattered Dreadmist Robe Cloth Icecrown 60 cs* Dreadmist Robe
STATS: +16 Stamina, +16 Intellect, +21 Spirit, +25 Spell Power
Preened Ironfeather Breastplate Spell Leather Icecrown 60 cs* Ironfeather Breastplate
STATS: +16 Stamina, +16 Intellect, +21 Spirit, +25 Spell Power
Stained Shadowcraft Tunic Leather Icecrown 60 cs* Shadowcraft Tunic
STATS: +32 Stamina, +21 Hit Rating, +43 Attack Power
Mystical Vest of Elements Spell Mail Icecrown 60 cs* Vest of Elements
STATS: +16 Stamina, +16 Intellect, 10 MP5, +25 Spell Power
Champion’s Deathdealer Breastplate Mail Icecrown 60 cs* Deathdealer Breastplate
STATS: +21 Agility, +21 Stamina, +14 Intellect, +43 Attack Power
Polished Breastplate of Valor Plate Icecrown 60 cs* Breastplate of Valor
STATS: +24 Strength, +24 Stamina, +21 Critical Strike Rating




cs*: Champion’s Seal



All of the new chest pieces will be found in Icecrown, and all of them will cost 60 Champion’s Seals. The link above will give you information on the seals themselves. [Update: People on the PTR say the cost is currently 40 rather than 60, and that the cost is in existing emblems rather than Champion Seals. Right now who knows what's right? I will keep this updated as more information is presented to me.]

All of these chest pieces have Equip: Experience gained from killing monsters and completing quests increased by 10%. (Just thought I would throw that in there before the question was asked.)

Item Level Calculations
You can follow this link to find a calculator to help you find the stats at various levels. I do not know how accurate it is, but this is the best I could find.

The site gives you two drop down boxes and two buttons to click. The first drop down and its associated button will look at whatever item you have selected and tell you what type of item it is at various levels. For instance, if there is a Leather Chest that becomes Mail at level 40, then it will tell you at which levels those changes are made.

The second drop down and it’s associated button will look for all heirloom items for whatever level you selected from the drop down list.

The one issue I have with the site is that it will not let you look for a single item of a single level to get all of the stats from just that item. You either see only what type of armor it is and at which levels it changes its type, or you will see every heirloom item in the game for the level that you picked. It’s not a bad site, and it does work fairly well, it just has not been optimized at this time.

Sources
All of the information you see here was gathered from either WoWWiki or WoWHead.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on July 27, 2009 in Patch Notes

 

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Patch 3.2: New BoA Chests

[Update 07/28/2009: For more detailed information, please look at the new post on this subject: New BoA Chests: Stats and Costs. And to save many of you some time, YES they stack.]

In my daily checks around the various WoW blogs that I visit, I stumbled onto an article that mentioned yet another change coming soon in Patch 3.2 – BoA Chests.

The new BoA Chests are going to offer a +10% Experience bonus just like the BoA Shoulders already do. The big kicker with this though, is that these two pieces of gear are going to stack. So you now have an opportunity to get +20% experience from your equipment alone. Of course you still have the option of Recruit A Friend for +300% experience, or the ever-useful +100% bonus you get from being rested. Note: As Brajana pointed out in the comments below, Rested and RAF bonuses do not stack, so +320% will be the highest bonus you can obtain.

So far we don’t have any real detail on what the chest pieces are going to offer other than the bonus experience, but I would imagine they will provide similar benefits to the other heirloom items that already exist. From what I was able to find there has been no mention of prices for them either. I would assume that you will have the same options you do now with X Stonekeeper Shards and X Emblems to purchase them, but we have no details at this time.

Where Psynister Stands
I absolutely love this idea!

I have been putting off leveling my paladin because I am having so much fun with my other characters right now, notably Belgawrath (Orc Shaman 35). But, I might go ahead and get back to leveling Lexington and getting him up to 80 so that I can work on getting some of the heirloom gear for my characters. It will mean I have to leave my fun lower level toons alone for a while, but it will also mean getting to spend more time focusing on my leveling toons later on down the road.

While I love leveling up my characters, that doesn’t mean I don’t mind speeding up the process. The faster one character levels, the sooner I can move on to another one.

Where Others Stand
I know when the shoulders were introduced I heard several people pouring out the QQ that the Recruit A Friend benefit had been cheapened by them, so I’m sure there will be plenty of that to go around again.

On the flip side of that though, there are enough people who hate the process of leveling alts that they will probably rejoice at this idea almost as much as I do. With both BoA experience boosters and Rested status, you’ll be able to run around with +120% experience gained while you do it. If you happen to participate in RAF already, then you’re looking at 420% 320% experience. [Edit: no +100% rested when using RAF.] If that’s the case, then you might as well roll a new toon and just consider yourself level 60 because you will be there in no time at all.

Original Source
Zarhym blue.mmo-champion.com

 
3 Comments

Posted by on June 17, 2009 in Patch Notes

 

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