Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Broken Mirror - Now Available For Bottle Caps : EverQuest

I was just logging in to EverQuest this morning, planning on letting my Magician soak up some MGBs in the background while I worked on a blog post, when I spotted the above. On click-through the detail is precise.

As Wilhelm has chronicled over the years, SOE's poor decision-making over what to offer for funny money at times came close to giving away the farm but  selling expansions for SC/DBC seems to straddle the common-sense fence.

Expansions are a big earning opportunity for any MMO company so allowing customers to claim them by cashing in credit seems like a bad idea. On the other hand, there are supposedly some difficult accounting issues wrapped up in all that unspent Daybreak Cash - and there's got to be a lot of it out there. I have over 30,000DBC accrued across various accounts, for example. Almost enough to buy ten copies of The Broken Mirror (Standard Edition of course).

I doubt I'll be be taking DBG up on their generous offer all the same.

With my highest character still trudging towards 92, more than a dozen levels shy of the cap, there's not much appeal right now in seven zones where I wouldn't even dare to set foot. If they scaled, the way the Raids in TBM scale, now that would be a major selling point, but they don't. And the single quality of life sweetener, a "keyring" to store Illusions, is something I might pay 500DBC for at most.

I am curious as to what the target market for this change might be. It's obviously not meant for potterers like myself. It was only yesterday that I took my first, nervous steps into The Underfoot, EQ's sixteenth expansion, released in 2009.

Welcome to The Underfoot
Although I have already visited a couple of later expansions, House of Thule and Veil of Alaris, that was no more than a quick shuffle round the opening zone of HoT and a shopping trip to the safe city in VoA. There are three expansions between those and The Broken Mirror that I have never even looked at - Rein of Fear, Call of the Forsaken and The Darkened Sea.

Who, I wonder, has characters capable of progressing through the max-level content of last November's expansion and yet hasn't yet bothered to buy it? That sounds like a very specific demographic - people with a lot of time to play, plenty of friends to group with, but insufficient disposable income to come up with a spare $30 over six  months.

Under the prevailing plan, each new expansion lifts the velvet rope on the expansion two boxes back, so The Broken Mirror won't join the F2P offer until the release of the 2017 expansion - assuming there is one. At current rate of play I would expect to begin to get interested in TBM somewhere around 2021.

I think I'll be keeping my DBC in my wallet for this one. All the same, it's nice to have the option and I suppose I'll have to spend it sometime, on something...

Addendum: This just in from EQ2 Wire. I do thoroughly recommend Terrors of Thalumbra for anyone with an interest in playing EQ2 at the top end. I thought the solo content was worth the admission price and it will be even more so for some old Station/Daybreak Cash you might have lying around.

Here's hoping this is in preparation for an announcement of details of this year's expansions for both games.

Second Addendum: Now they're all at it! FFXIV? You're up next. Anyone would think there was a WoW expansion about to appear or something...

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