I had this thought last night when trying out Sims Free Play on my phone. Everything takes forever to complete. While most of these pay to speed up games take about one to two minutes to do a task early in the game, just long enough to figure out what else you can do, Sims takes 10-120 minutes. So you set one task, close the game and come back to it later. It’s rather boring. But the game is fun when you’re playing it. Which is all designed to get you to pay for premium currency to make the game play faster. Frustrated with this I figured that since I hadn’t ever played the Sims games on computer, and it had to be faster, I’d see how much Sims 3 was since it’s old now.
For a game that came out almost six years ago it costs $20 on Steam. That’s hugely expensive for a game that old. So I figured it must be a complete game with the expansions. Nope. It’s another $20 for each of 18 expansions and $40 for the newest expansion. That makes it over $400 for the complete collection. And the newest expansion is over a year old. To put that into perspective Skyrim and it’s three expansions are about the same age range (2-4 years old) and the total is $40, or $10 per game. Does EA really think that the ability to change the seasons in a game is worth twice as much as an expansion for Skyrim? All of this lead me to realize that the creators of The Sims look at me as a wallet they can just keep going back to.
And then Lego came out with their own Skylanders clone. This seemed like an awesome idea. I love Lego and the Lego games. Then I saw the pricing: $99.99 Starter Pack, $29.99 Level Packs, $24.99 Team Packs, and $14.99 Fun Packs. So you’ll need the starter pack, probably one team pack and one fun pack. That runs you $140 or the price of 2.3 AAA games. But the level expansions are only $30. You actually have to buy four level packs before you catch up to the standard AAA price per game ($60). At that point you’ve spent $260 or almost enough to buy this. And somehow I think the physical set will have more staying power.
Dear game makers: I am not a wallet.