Aug 282012

Beacon of Loot
A Shining Beacon of Loot

I was only off the game about a week. Really. Several days in Indy, then a couple of days starting a new job and launching a new site.

Eight days? Nine tops?

I log back in only to find that chests have been transformed into glistening beacons of loot, so bright that they darken all around them by contrast.


Meanwhile, the forums are lit up too, aflame with (more) charges of “Pay To Win” as Turbine brings the ability to buy your way out of raid timers into the DDO Store.

Other changes too, after all there was an entire update. But these two stand out and draw immediate attention. Perhaps a quick scan of the Update 15 release notes is in order.

Ah, yes, here’s the new loot look:

Getting sweet sweet loot from treasure chests is a noteworthy event, so there are now visuals/audio to suit the occasion.

Nothing about the raid timer bypass, but then DDO Store changes aren’t always referenced in release notes.

Does the ability to run raids as fast as you want – for real money – add up to “Pay to Win”? There is only opinion here, no consortium has published commonly-agreed guidelines that we can apply as criteria.

But my opinion is Yes, this is a Pay to Win item. It does not drop in chests and can only be purchased with Turbine Points (something we were promised would not happen, by the way, although that train left the station years ago), and specifically allows behavior that has in the past been considered exploitive and bannable.

Finally, the nature of the advantage has to be examined. There are lots of items in the DDO Store that people claim are Pay To Win but are not. +2 tomes are not Pay To Win for several reasons, including the fact that they don’t give you a new capability, they only make you (slightly) better at things you can already do.

Tiny Shiny
Tiny, shiny!

On the other hand, Raid Timer Bypass lets you buy your way out of the grind in a manner that cannot be accomplished any other way. Want a nice greensteel item? How about ToD rings? Whatever, just input your credit card number and in an evening you can have whatever raid item you want.

Supply and Demand theory indicates that difficulty in attaining raid loot is a big part of why it is so highly sought. Increasing the supply will reduce the demand.

But I am heading off into discussion territory that should probably be in a post all it’s own. This one is about change.

The New Loot Look: Thumbs up!
Raid Timer Bypass: Thumbs down!

Effervescent loot
Shining like the mid-day sun
Get in my backpack!

Raid Timer Bypass
Trade Turbine Points for raid loot
An evil portent?

The more things change, the more I feel like leveling Mawry. See you in the game.

🙂 😀 🙂

  3 Responses to “Take Your Eye Off The Game For A Second And Whoosh! Change”

Comments (3)
  1. Yes +2 tomes are pay to win! Example: eat a +2 INT tome and now you can build for Combat Expertise, or a DEX tome for better TWF! Whatever.

  2. One (weak) counter-argument against ANY charges of Pay-to-Win is that for every every 100 favour your characters get you earn 25 Turbine points. So technically you can get anything in the Store by grinding favour.

    But more importantly with the Raid bypass system anyone using a bypass still has to spend the SAME total amount of time doing the raids to have the SAME chance of getting what they wanted. As an altoholic this doesn’t matter to me, although it is an advantage for someone with only a couple of characters I guess.

    So all in all, while I don’t particularly like this change from a gameplay perspective it isn’t too much pay-to-win as convenience for me. The only real Pay-to-Win in the store right now I think are +2 Fate Tomes since they don’t drop in game, unlike +1s AND give you a large advantage in many cases without having to work for it.

  3. Skipping raid timers is something I have said should be in the store for so long I feel that I should get a cut of the profits.

    My thoughts and (after talking to Glin and Jerry about it) Turbine’s are about the same, Sure you might have a few people that will buy a stack of timer skippers and run a raid to death in a few nights. (I might stock up on them for the next pick your discount sale) But the largest portion of the sales will come from people like you and I who happed to be on timer for a given raid when our guild or different channels happen to form one up and there is a role you want to fill or an alt you wish to play.

    Example: Say I run shroud Monday because some people in channel talk me into it. And I run on say Java because he is close to a 20th and I have plans to TR him soon. Tuesday my guild decides to short man the raid with just guildies but we don’t currently have the healer role filled. Hence I shell out a few points to bring Java along. Win for me, win for the guild, win for Turbine.

    Now if they start selling another pull at the chest that works on raid chests then I would agree that is pay to win.

What do you think?

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