World of Warcraft players were excited when Blizzard first introduced the Trading Post feature at the start of this year. This mechanic was supposed to give players access to dozens of previously unobtainable or exclusive cosmetics at no extra charge. All that players had to do was simply play the game, and they would earn a slew of cosmetics every month. It seemed like a step in the right direction for World of Warcraft, but that sentiment has quickly changed since.
Earlier this month, Blizzard released a brand-new World of Warcraft cash shop cosmetic. Cash shop cosmetics are nothing new for the MMO, but this one came with a caveat. Players can add this set to their collection for $8, or they can wait until the set gets added to the Trading Post sometime before the end of the year. This new set has made some players feel like the Trading Post is simply another avenue for microtransactions and has now left them with a tough choice going forward.
WoW’s New Trading Post is Dancing With Microtransactions
After getting datamined as a Trading Post item, World of Warcraft‘s new Guardian Pack has officially been revealed as a cash shop cosmetic. For $8, players can obtain a three-piece transmog set heavily inspired by Medivh. While it is not the most lavish set ever released, it does include a couple pieces that will surely be a hit for transmog collectors. Anyone who wants to claim it can head over to the shop right now and buy it, or they can wait until it crops up on the Trading Post.
World of Warcraft‘s Guardian Pack is set to leave the cash shop on May 31, and it will be unobtainable for many months afterward. It will be added to the Trading Post between September 1 and December 31 for an undisclosed amount of Trader’s Tender. Datamining suggests that the Trading Post version will come in three separate parts rather than as a set and may cost the player around 975 Tender to obtain it all. That is only 25 less than the total monthly Tender players can earn, thus putting players in a bit of a tough spot.
Anyone who wants to get this transmog set has two choices; they can either buy it now for real-world money or wait until it eventually releases on the Trading Post. Once it does, they will have to spend almost all their monthly tender to acquire it. At the same time, there could be loads of other exciting World of Warcraft Trading Post cosmetics that they would rather have, but it may also be their last chance to buy this set. There does not seem to be an easy answer here, and this may be a sign of things to come.
Some players were worried that Blizzard would start letting players purchase more Tender with real-world money when the Trading Post was first announced. It currently does not seem like the studio wants to offer a new microtransaction currency, but this new cash shop pack is pretty much just that in all but name. While Blizzard may not be outright selling the Trading Post’s Tender, it is selling a cosmetic that will eventually cost Tender, and anyone who purchases it now will save the Tender they were originally going to spend on it. This makes the feature feel like nothing more than another income stream, but it could have been so much more than that.
The Trading Post is still a very exciting addition to World of Warcraft, and the cosmetics have been excellent so far. However, this new cash shop pack sets a bad precedent for the future of the feature and may alter the entire appeal of it. Only Blizzard knows what it has planned for the Trading Post, and hopefully those plans do not include more microtransactions.
World of Warcraft is available now on PC.
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