EVE and the microTransaction phenom

Free Realms has caused a great deal of buzz lately with its microTransaction MMO experiment. The extent of which has yet to be fully seen, but with another major MMO, Dungeon’s & Dragons Online, switching to this new revenue model, it looks like we’ll be seeing alot more of it in the future.

There have been several other blogs proposing what other MMOs we know and love today would look like with this new MT model, if you could purchase various aspects of the games; from gear to content to pets, the list goes on and on. I can’t say I’m sold on the concept for more mainstream games, but clearly it seems to be working.

Being that EVE is such a different game (in some respects) than most of the ‘traditional’ MMOs, what are some of the aspects that could benefit from a MT model? It seems clear that the items you should be able to buy would only affect your interaction with the virtual world and not impact other players, but that line seems like a very hard one to define. Do you think allowing something like the purchase of fully learned skills should be allowed? Considering one of the biggest complaints against EVE is the fact that it is impossible for new players to catch up with those that have been training for years. This might be a way to close that gap, while making CCP some new revenue.

Perhaps the microTransactions could extend to things like wormhole space exploration. Corporations could purchase an entrance to W-space that only they could use. A entrance would remain private based upon a re-occurring fee; a player housing of sorts. This could allow for things like setting up your own system privately, then opening it up to outsiders later after you’re happy with your defenses. Or for smaller corps this would allow for their own corner of 0.0 space without fear of being wiped off the face of space by the gargantuan corps and alliances. Perhaps CCP could introduce a new server with microTransactions in place, might be an interesting experiment.

These types of transactions have a huge impact on the player ecosystem aspects, from economy to PvP encounters, etc.. Thus I don’t think CCP would allow them, but it would add an interesting twist to the game. Interesting to think about nonetheless.

I’ll close with my first poll, here goes nothing…

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~ by Facepalm on June 29, 2009.

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