" Once a game is clearly massive, like Hearthstone or LOL it's worth paying to differentiate yourself from every random player because a lot of people will be audience for your flashy cosmetic outfit."
- Stabs, commenting on my post
Stabs' comment assumes that displaying cosmetics to other players is a primary motivator for purchasing cosmetic items in a cash store. I'm sure some people care about this sort of thing, but I guess for me it is a matter of how you define audience.
I own Cyclops' 90's costume, after deciding to pre-order his founder's pack at the very last minute pre-launch. If there had been even a small discount available for displaying the mediocre default costume to the audience of complete strangers who see me passing by in Stark Tower, I would have taken it. The audience that I cared about in making a purchase to snag this costume is precisely one person large - myself. Playing existing characters from the Marvel universe is a key selling point of this game, and I strongly associate this particular character with the costume he wore during the era when I was actually reading the comics and watching the cartoons. I see my character on the screen far often than any stranger I run into in-game will, and it is worth having my character look the way I want him to look for my personal benefit.
Marvel Heroes is not an open world MMORPG, and thinking back I can remember just one time when I ever had anything in an MMO that actually drew significant attention/comment from other players. I had a horse for my gnome in World of Warcraft back in 2006, before riding skill or easy spill-over rep gain, and I did occasionally get compliments for having pulled it off. That said, I'd argue there are two key differences - first, earning the horse was an in-game achievement (which took a lot of time back in the day) rather than just a small cash fee, and second, WoW servers in that era had much more of a community feel of days gone past when someone might actually remember the gnome on the horse. For better or worse, those days aren't around anymore.
Today, if I do but a cosmetic item, it's going to be primarily for my own enjoyment. How do you all feel? Would you pay extra for the sole purpose of showing off to other players?
|A rare sight back in the day (because it was hard to get a horse), and even rarer today (poor Marcus).|