Game Shops and Immersion

I spend a lot of my time looking for new MMOs to play, but I refuse to touch anything with an in-game shop that offers in-game items for real money. It has nothing to do with the fact that I don’t want to spend money (I don’t, but that’s a separate issue), it’s that the shop breaks the immersion by offering something that can only be obtained by  leaving the game and stocking up on gems or whatever insidious fake currency they have running in order to increase purchases. You could make an argument that having a gem system, where you spend a certain amount of real dollars in order to obtain in-game currency shouldn’t break immersion, but they still represent a disconnect that I cannot get around.

guild-wars-2-store

The shops in Guild Wars 2 is a perfect example of this problem. Not only do the gem price tags represent a break in the game’s immersion, but seeing the items, which are flashier and more intricate than standards, shatters it as well. Too many times ive been minding my own business and then I see someone with a fish for a weapon or a hat that would break most necks.  If games need revenue for content they should just be up front and ask for a subscription in order to keep the game immersive.

One thought on “Game Shops and Immersion

  1. good article!

    In game shops always feel like a cheap attempt at getting more money from the player. I was playing a bit of SWTOR last month, and if you’re not already a subscriber the game tries = to get you to pay for something every time you turn your head. It gets old really fast.

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