Welcome to the 1,215th edition of Loading...

Loading... is the premier daily MMORPG news, coverage, and
commentary newsletter, only from Ten Ton Hammer.

Have you ever thought something was going to be cheap and in the end
it cost you a bundle? Microtransactions can be like that. Sure, the
game is Free 2 Play, but does that really mean it's going to be free?
Today we take a look at the lure of microtransactions and see what can
possibly make F2P cost more than your average subscription in
Loading... Free 2 Pay.

The Pulse

You vote with what you view at Ten Ton Hammer, and the
result is the Ten Ton Pulse ( href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/thepulse/" target="_blank">What
is The Pulse?).

Here are today's top 5 Pulse results:

  1. target="_blank">World of Warcraft
  2. Star
    Trek Online
    (UP 9)
  3. Dungeons and
    Dragons Online
    (DOWN 1)
  4. EverQuest 2
  5. Age
    of Conan

Biggest movers this month:

  1. Torchlight
    (UP 20 to #14)
  2. Dragon
    Age: Origins
    (UP 6 to #11)
  3. Star
    Trek Online
    (UP 6 to #10)
Recent Releases

Loading... Daily

I was in Las Vegas for 19 days last month and this month I'm eating
Ramen Noodles. I don't dislike Ramen Noodles, but I haven't had to
resort to them as my primary sustenance since college. You see, I
figured if I didn't gamble much and went to cheap buffets, it would be
a cheap trip. I was wrong.

Not unlike my trip, I was also wrong about thinking
F2P/microtransaction games would be cheaper than a subscription model.
I couldn't possibly spend more than 15 dollars a month on in-game
cosmetics, potions, and other fun things, could I? Well, I'm here to
tell you that I certainly can, and have, and I may have to go back to
subscription model games just to save money.

Now I'm sure it's possible to play these games on a budget, but I'm
an impulse buyer. I like cool shiny things and the trap, at least for
me, is that they're so cheap. Three dollars for a top hat for my
character? That's nothing! I'll buy that and a tuxedo. The problem
comes in when the novelty wears off and I open the marketplace again an
hour later to find something else that would be fun to play around with.

Free Realms
cost me about $45 for the week that I played it. Aside from the fact
that there's something disturbing about a 32-year-old bachelor playing
with virtual puppies, the marketplace just had too many cool things
that I really wanted for my toon. I had to stop playing it because I
simply couldn't keep up with the cost. Most people with an ounce of
self-control may be able to make the venture a little less expensive
than my run, but I will say that if I had children that were anything
like me, I sure wouldn't want them playing it lest I had to take out a
second mortgage to cover the cost of particle effects for my kids'
giant spatulas.

I don't even want to tell you how much I spent on EverQuest's
Legends of Norrath card game. I got hooked the first deck I bought when
I got a loot card that gave my EQ2 assassin red glowing eyes. Since
then I've spent literally hundreds of dollars on packs of cards trying
to get other new cool loot cards. To this day I still haven't played a
single match of the actual Legends of Norrath game. But I have
thousands of cards if I ever do want to play.

I've been playing DDO
lately and I've really enjoyed it. But it, too, can get expensive. The
marketplace has lots of cool stuff to keep your character decked out.
The biggest cost so far has been the gold ticket hirelings. If you buy
the gold ticket version from the DDO store you can summon more than one
hireling at a time. So I always have a full group, whether or not my
friends are online. They're not crazily expensive at my level yet but
the costs are starting to add up.

I will fully admit that I'm probably more of an easy target as a
consumer when it comes to microtransactions than most. But I can't
imagine that I'm alone in my guilty pleasures. Even if only one out of
every ten players are like me games like Free Realms would be making
far more money on their models than triple A subscription games. Of
course no publishers are willing to share their profit reports with the
public, so we don't really have an accurate idea yet if these games are
indeed more profitable than other models. But if we take a look at how
many games are now looking into going this route, or adding in some
form of microtransaction markets, we can say with utmost certainty that
there is some money in it. I've said it before - it wouldn't surprise
me at all if we saw more games go to F2P/microtransactions in the very
near future and start turning away from the old $15/month model. It
just seems like smart business to me.

Despite the fact that it's cost me more than I bargained for, I will
continue playing these games and buying their shop items. It's fun. I
enjoy it. I will probably have to start setting myself a budget but I
won't be quitting any time soon. Tell me I'm not alone. Confess your
reckless spending href="http://forums.tentonhammer.com/showthread.php?t=48001">in the

Shayalyn's Epic Thread of
the Day

From our href="http://forums.tentonhammer.com/forumdisplay.php?f=547">SWTOR:
News & Announcements Forum

style="font-weight: normal;">Final classes revealed

I get a drumroll, please? The last of the classes for Star Wars: The
Old Republic have been revealed and they are.... Well, I'm not going to
tell you. The better to tease you with, my dear. You'll simply have to
check out href="http://forums.tentonhammer.com/showthread.php?t=47975">this
created by AngryBeaver, Ten Ton Hammer's resident SWTOR fanatic. Head
on over, and then tell us what you think of the SWTOR classes, and
which one you're most eager to play.


Awesome Quotes from the
Epic Thread

"There getting close to beta I can
feel it in my bones. The Imperial pigs must die, die I say, DIE!

- OneEyeRed


Have you spotted an Epic Thread on our forums? href="http://forums.tentonhammer.com/showthread.php?t=32559">Tell

6 new Ten Ton Hammer MMOG
features today! 92 in November! 3,064

New Exclusives Today at Ten Ton

  • style="font-weight: bold;">Torchlight (PC) Review

    Released earlier this month, Torchlight is an action RPG dungeon
    crawler with a style and mythology all its own. This single player game
    will serve as a springboard for the Torchlight MMORPG due in 2012, but
    how well does Torchlight stand on its own? Does Torchlight deliver on
    loot, levels, and fun? To find out, join Ten Ton Hammer for a review of
  • style="font-weight: bold;">Aion Gladiator Class Skill List

    Becoming an expert of your chosen Aion class takes not only
    in-game time but also a little bit of research. Part of being the best
    Gladiator you can be is knowing what skills you have in your arsenal
    and knowing exactly what they do. Our skill list will provide you with
    that information and give you the tools to plan ahead in skill
    purchases. This skill list has now been updated to include all skills
    up to level 50.
  • style="font-weight: bold;">Champions Online : Healer Build Guide

    Creating a build for Champions Online can be difficult with
    the insane number of choices a player has. Fortunately for you, your
    friends at
    Ten Ton Hammer are here to provide a quick guide for a healer (or
    support if you’re fancy!) build to help you bring blessed relief to
    your allies
    and vengeance upon thy foes!
  • href="http://tentonhammer.com/rom/guides/classes/dual_class_intro"> style="font-weight: bold;">Runes of Magic - The Scout:
    Beginners Guide

    Join ZeroMerc as he explores the very begining of the Dual Class
    options in Runes of Magic.This guide will point you in the
    direction of where to start.
  • style="font-weight: bold;">WoW Editorial - Most Needed Classes
    in Raids

    Everyone understands that while any class can fit into a raid, there
    are certain classes that end up being more prevalent since they are in
    more demand. This has a lot to do with what buffs they bring, what
    damage or healing they bring, and what synergy they bring to the raid.
    It also has a lot to do with what roles they can fill. Find out which
    classes Byron "Messiah" Mudry brings to his raids and why in this
    week's editorial Most Needed Classes in Raids.
  • style="font-weight: bold;">WoW Guide to the Vault of Archavon

    The Vault of Archavon is a raid dungeon found in Wintergrasp Keep in
    the World of Warcraft.  VOA, as it is commonly referred to, is a
    relatively simple raid and one that many players get to experience
    since it is very simple to group for and complete.  It contains
    three bosses and very few trash creatures that need to be dealt with
    and can be completed quickly.  If you haven’t beat the raid yet,
    maybe it’s time for you to learn all the strategies and defeat it
    before the next expansion comes out!

Today's Hottest Content

  1. Odus Comes to EverQuest
    - A Sentinel's Fate Expansion Q&A with Alan Crosby
  2. Interfacing with
    Star Trek Online - A UI Discussion with Cryptic
  3. Left 4
    Dead 2
    PC Review
  4. style="font-weight: bold;">Torchlight (PC) Review
  5. href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/wow/guides/seasonal/pilgrims-pride">World
    of Warcraft
    - Pilgrim's Pride Guide
  6. style="font-weight: bold;">Lord of the Rings Online: Siege of Mirkwood
    Beta Impressions
  7. EVE

    Sins of the Solar Spymaster #32 - The Most Dangerous Agent
  8. Star
    Trek Online
    Bridge Trailer and Space Combat Part 1 Video
  9. Down to Earth or
    Another Planet - a Star Trek Online Ground Combat
    Q&A with Dan Stahl
  10. style="font-weight: bold;">Global Agenda Medic Class Q&A
    with Exec. Producer Todd Harris

Thanks as always for visiting the Ten Ton Hammer

- Benjamin J. de la Durantaye and the Ten Ton Hammer team

To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our Dungeons & Dragons Online: Eberron Unlimited Game Page.

Last Updated: Mar 13, 2016