Bioware Anthem Microtransactions Cause Early Controversy
While many gamers may consider “microtransaction” to be a dirty word, the reality of the situation is that microtransactions are here to stay, as they are useful in funding new developments and post-launch content. However, some games are unnecessarily aggressive with the revenue-raising tactic, so players may be glad to hear ‘s executive producer Mark Darrah discuss the issue.
An image of ANTHEM microtransaction store has surfaced on Reddit, prompting more than a few raised eyebrows. At first glance the pricing seems extortionate, with various cosmetic items going for around $20 a pop. Shards are the game’s premium currency, and based on what we know, 100 shards is roughly $1. The picture shows Javelin paint jobs for 2000 shards each.
However, BioWare’s Chris Schmidt was on hand to shed some light on the situation, stating that “these [prices] don’t represent final, stamped for all of eternity pricing. We are iterating on our economy design and balance almost daily, so you’re seeing a snapshot of one iteration. This is why we tend to not discuss things like pricing, because it’s one of those iterative things that’s sure to change frequently right up until the day you play the game.” In other words, the pricing on show in the screenshot isn’t final.
It is also important to remember that BioWare has previously stated that every single item in the store can be purchased using in-game coins. This means that even if they are pricey, you theoretically don’t have to spend any actual money on any of them. Of course how long it takes to grind to get enough coins for them remains to be seen. So while this may seem like extortion at first, it’s important to remember that the game isn’t even out yet and that everything is subject to change.
Anthem’s open demo is due this Friday, so make sure you check that out if you want some hands-on experience with BioWare’s new epic shooter.