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Vessel of Hatred survey leak pay to win concerns unfounded?

The recent survey leak has got the community concerned about Pay to Win but should we really be worried about it?


vessel of hatred pay to win

It’s been a hot topic for a couple of days so let’s address it and see if we should really be concerned about that leaked expansion survey and pay to win.

Here’s some background. A survey had apparently gone to an unknown group of people and was under strict NDA. The survey was then leaked and picked up by people on Reddit, the Blizzard forums, and youtuber Bellular News who posted a video on its contents.

What the survey was trying to assess was the pricing models for the Vessel of Hatred expansion which is about a year away from release. Prices for the expansion ranged from $49.99 to $99.99. Now, as we know from the recent Diablo 4 release, there were numerous editions, one which also included a few days extra early access. Can we expect this in VoH? Almost certainly.

Pay to Win?

Survey
Survey

This brings us to the next most contentious point about the survey. In the pricing bands, one of the options includes “Early Access to a Functional Item” and “Additional Stash Space”.

Now, before we all scream PAY TO WIN, let’s really take a look at what the survey is probably proposing. As already stated, there will be “Early Access to the Game”. This to me suggests that any additional functional items, uniques, or legendaries would be made available in that timeframe which would not really make it Pay to Win as has been suggested.

The only argument against it is that you would have to farm for the new additions but Blizzard would probably make it a pretty easy item to farm if they are giving it away. We also have no idea what they are or what they would do. A ring? A helm? A pair of pants? It’s all just guesswork if this did become part of the plan.

The other main point that has caused an uproar is the additional stash tabs included in the different price bands. Blizzard has stated that for technical reasons there’s not an option for additional stash tabs right now. However, it’s pretty safe to say that if they plan on offering extra stash tabs they have 12 months to fix those technical reasons and implement the option. Therefore by the time VoH comes out, you’ll either get them as part of the expansion pricing tiers or they will be available in the shop or even for some ridiculous amount of gold or other material/currency.

While I don’t necessarily agree for paying extra cash for stash tabs on a fully priced game, I think by the time the survey results have been compiled, we’ll see something more palatable to the community when they are introduced. Let’s not get worked up about it now when we still have 12 months to go.

What Price?

Diablo 3 and Reaper of Souls Content at Blizzcon 2013
Reaper was worth it

As far as I can remember, the Reaper of Souls expansion sold for $39.99 originally. I also want to mention another expansion that came recently that was probably one of the best things I have played this year, Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty which was $29.99. It was just brilliant with a great story, and although the new zone was not that large, you were fully engaged. Both these examples were good value for money.

So let’s look at what VoH will offer. A new zone, new class, and a new questline at the bare minimum. Asking around the $40 mark is not unreasonable in today’s market. Any other tiers above that are going to offer cosmetics, early access, and a load of platinum to spend in the overpriced in-game store, and perhaps some useable item.

The whole Pay to win drama feels like a complete overreaction to something that has not been announced, if you can even call it pay to win with a few days early access with some new unique or legendary items. Remember, this is a game and nobody wins anything. I wish we did, I could retire now.

Blizzard has learned a lot since the launch of Diablo 4, and upsetting the community will be the last thing they want to do. Also, remember Activision Blizzard is now not a thing, Microsoft are now in charge and I would hope as the mighty overseers they would be keen to keep the player base onside.

The whole pay to win debate is a storm in a teacup in my opinion. We’ve seen the same old arguments over and over in the past two decades. If there is something to worry about, the community will certainly let them know about it at the time but I seriously doubt they would make that mistake.



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