• The Crestiad

Micro-transactions and DLCs are ruining video games

Natasha Hague 

Managing Editor 

I remember the days when I would walk into GameStop with my dad on my birthday, pick out one game to take home and then play it. That was the process for buying a video game.

The industry has taken a turn for the worst by implementing micro transactions and downloadable content (DLC) into video games. 

A form of micro-transaction is when a player has the option to buy in-game currency to purchase things in a virtual setting. An example of this would be Fortnite skins. A player will purchase V-Bucks with real money and then buy skins in game with the V-Bucks. The transaction is roughly one U.S. dollar for 100 V-Bucks. Skin prices range anywhere from 800 to 3,000 V-Bucks.

“Microtransactions continue to be a worse problem” said Gameranx in the YouTube video titled, 10 worst Microtransactions of 2019. 

Many games are increasing the use of microtransactions within the game. Some games are using microtransactions as a way to speed up game play. Instead of the player going through the game, leveling up for hours and receiving rewards like a strong weapon, they can simply buy the things they would eventually get.

“Everything in the e-store you can get from playing the game,” Ashraf Ismail, Assassin’s Creed Origins game director, told Eurogamer regarding the video game Assassin’s Creed Origins. “It’s just an accelerated way of playing the game.”

Assassin's Creed was released in 2017. In 2020, many games have opted for cosmetic microtransactions rather than game microtransactions. Instead they are using DLCs as a way to earn more money from game purchases. 

A DLC is content released for a game that increases gameplay or story line. For example, the Sims has a large amount of DLC content. Sure, the base game is playable without them, but some games add significant changes to gameplay. DLC Expansion Packs in the Sims adds new worlds, new interactions and new lifestyles. These are major elements of the game that are only accessible through purchase. 

DLCs like “Get Famous” and “Get Together” are not clothes and cosmetic changes; they are full mechanical changes to the game. They add different types of gameplay like leveling up celebrities and creating social clubs. It is frustrating to live in a world where I can no longer go to a store and buy a full game. I have to also buy packs every few months when the developers add new functions to the games. The industry is ruining games by releasing half made games that need to be paid for multiple times to get the whole experience. 

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