Regional FlagWoW, Blizzard and IntegritySource
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#1 - 2014/04/09 07:06:00 AM
From us wow forum

1 Year ago Blizzard said...

04/08/2013 06:30 PMPosted by Vrakthris
Technically speaking, if we wanted gold selling or even power leveling to be permitted we could offer it ourselves. After all, we control the virtual currency and we have control over the characters.

We do not because we value the integrity of the game and therefore there are certain activities that we prohibited because we feel it is damaging to the game and game environment.

The sale/purchase of gold inflates the market to where nothing is really worth anything. So a low level green item could go for 20k, because the 20k is not worth much.

As for Power leveling (meaning someone plays the character for you), there are many in-game and promotion related options available to help you level, to get a friend into the game, but much of it still needs to be done by you.

People play games, especially MMO's for different reasons: story progression, PvP, 'end game' raiding, social interaction, but there is very little value in any accomplishment if it was simply handed to you.

The simple fact is these practices go against everything we stand for as gamers and frankly that is what it comes down to.[url=""] Blizzard Entertainment is a company[/url] of gamers who create games for folks like us. Gamers.

I created a thread about this several weeks ago which mysteriously disappeared despite it being a very civil thread. Let me start by saying I have been a very long time fan of Blizzard so please don't accuse me of mindlessly hating on them. If anything I found it very difficult to overcome my brand loyalty to them. For a long time they have pushed nothing but quality games, for me it started with Wacraft II, then Starcraft, Diablo II, Warcraft 3 and the early days of WoW. Yet now I can't help but realize that Blizzard is no longer primarily interested in providing a great gaming experience.

MMOs are supposed to be about building virtual worlds, separate from our own, where the players are the developer's most valuable resource. No time spent playing it was "wasted", it was all time spent progressing your character(s). Whether you got the loot or not, it didn't really matter because you were out there in the game world interacting with other players, doing things in it, having fun.

Now, leveling, a core mechanic of MMOs, is seen as nothing more than a tedious hurdle by the majority of the player-base. Instead of putting the resources into figuring out a way to make leveling more fun they simply slapped a price tag on skipping it. When you buy a 90, you are literally paying to skip game content. Ask yourself: What does that say about the state of your game when people are willing to pay the full retail price of a game just to bypass it?

Players are too concerned with the reward and not the journey. To them the time spent getting said reward is not fun, its just a timesink. The problem with this perspective is that when you break it down... acquiring just about anything in WoW comes down to how much time you put into it. Maybe not everyone can be a 2700+ Gladiator or a Heroic Raider, but just about everything else is guaranteed given time.

With that being the case, the question then becomes: where do you draw the line? If you are in the mindset to defend the selling of boosted 90 then you must also accept that it would be perfectly okay for Blizzard to sell:

•Gold•Reputation•Professions•Honor Gear•Conquest Gear (After a certain number of weeks)•LFR Gear•All (as in every single one) pets•Most (non-progression) mounts
At that point you have to ask yourself whether what you're playing is really a game or not. How does paying for mounts, pets or levels make for a fun game? Wouldn't you rather be playing instead?

A couple weeks ago when I initially quoted the Blue post above I was thinking I would still keep playing. Making new characters and leveling them has always been one of my favorite parts of WoW. I currently have 13 max level characters and 24 in the 60 to 89 range. Not only was questing, doing dungeons or leveling through battlegrounds enjoyable but there was value in spending that time progressing those characters.

The turning point for me was when I was leveling tailoring on one of my lower level priests the other day. Said priest is on a server I don't usually play on so I didn't have a whole lot of gold, I was spending a lot of time looking over the patterns and trying to find the most efficient way to level it with my limited resources. That's when the thought hit me: if I just pay $60 I don't have to care about coming up with the gold/effort to level this tradeskill and I would get boosted the 30 extra levels to 90 as well, it would be THAT easy.

But then I felt sort of confused and maybe even ashamed. If me or anyone else can just pay to skip all that work, what value is there in actually doing it in-game? It took me awhile (I'm not very bright) but I came to the full realization that my investment in my characters was meaningless. Feeling dejected I canceled my subscription and my WoD pre-order.

I don't expect to change anyone's opinion, especially Blizzard's, but I felt that before leaving I needed to speak my mind. Know that I fully understand that Blizzard is a business, there is profit to be found in micro-transactions. Yet, from my perspective they are sacrificing the long term reputation they have built and the integrity of their games for short term gain.

With that I say, farewell to Azeroth, Blizzard and modern gaming as a whole.

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#20 - 2014/04/09 07:25:00 PM
There are existing threads on this topic. If you’d like to add anything further, please continue the discussion in one of those.