Monday, October 31, 2011

Are You Not Entertained?

I went ahead and signed on for the Annual Plan this weekend. It was pretty simple. Reminded me a lot of signing that stupid two-year agreement with my cell phone carrier. You still pay however you want (per 6 months for me), you're just "obligated" to continue paying until the end of the contract period.

The concept has never really bit me in the arena of cellular devices, and I don't really expect it to in WoW.  Even with SW:TOR, Skyrim, and AC: Revelations (to name the three games I'm most interested in this holiday season), I will still likely being logging into WoW a couple times a week for raiding and PvP stuffs.  I'll also probably run the occasional holiday boss. 

Really, if you figure I play WoW 2-3 hours a week at worst (which isn't very much), it's about equivalent to going on a cinematic adventure (see a movie).  Those cost what, $10-$12 now?  That's about what WoW runs me per month, so I'd still say it's an entertainment deal.  Incidentally, books run me about the same as WoW.  I'll consume the latest George R.R. Martin novel in about a month.  Game of Dragons (I call them all Game of x, because I find it humorous to do so) cost me $15 in ebook form.

My value judgement is always going to be firmly based in "hours of entertainment per dollar."  Gaming has generally been a great investment.  Books as well.  Movies... well, we usually wait for HBO to pick them up and the sub there is worth it too.  I would only contemplate leaving WoW of the hE/$ falls below my persoanl threshold.  And I'm still well above it, even during my most casual periods.  Throw in a content patch, expansion, or fun even... that time goes up.

Speaking of Martin's Game of Games Series (Song of Fire and Ice), you fans out there may be interested to hear about our Halloween costumes.  Fuu and I went as the Lannister twins.  She even got a blond wig (my hair was Jaime-like enough as-is... though I did grow it out for the month).  Pretty hilarious if you ask me.

We'll probably scare the parents more than the kids...


  1. Well said. I re-subbed this weekend under the annual plan. I think this go-round, I'm going to try to play the classes I've long avoided.

    I also may start a F2P account for my daughter and possibly let her role a 'real' toon under my live account once she's more familiar with the UI. It will give us another way to spend time together. She loves to walk my bank-alts around Stormwind and take the train to Ironforge. I'm sort of excited to watch her 'leave the nest' so to speak! =D

  2. Awesome. I think what it all comes down to is a personal decision of "am I getting my money's worth." For some, that answer may be no, and that's okay. When you break it down, I don't think the asking price is exorbitant for what you get.

  3. I think its a mistake to compare to other entertainment costs. I mean you can get 1st row seats to a Rolling Stones concert for $500 and then use the $250/hr as a comparrison. It's apples to oranges.

    You need to compare to other gaming costs to be fair. Skyrim for example will have 60 hour main quest 300+ hour total or $1/hr main and around 20 cents for total time. Or compare to other MMO's. But to pick and choose to entertainment is very misleading. What about concerts in the park that cost $5 for 2 to 4 hours?

    But the REAL answer is if YOU as the consumer feels you are getting a fair deal then you are. Simple as that.

  4. Well, that's probably why you won't find me in the front row at any Stones concerts. The few times I will do concerts, I buy lawn seats. I just can't justify spending that much money for only a few hours of entertainment. Personally, I very much compare apples to oranges in this matter, which may be a mistake but it's served me well.

    On the flip side, when I do convince myself to spend entertainment money on something other than gaming, it is usually coupled with an intent to support the artist/author. It's not all simple personal enjoyment. Sometimes I'll shell out just because I like them and want them to succeed. In the case of concerts, it's more often that feeling that overrides my cheapness.

    Also, you'd have to compare levels of entertainment as well. It's not a yes/no question, but rather a slider scale. The entertainment I might get out of a kickin' lawn concert would probably be higher than a couple more hours in front of the computer screen. So yeah, it's not as simple as I laid out above, but I do think the comparison to books or movies is pretty close in general. (Though opening night movies are more like concerts probably, in that the atmospheres is a big reason to go and can enhance the entertainment value).

    That being said, Skyrim is totally a better deal, you're right. :-)

  5. DUDE! I love your costumes!

    Definitely made me smile :)

  6. lol Fuu's idea. I love my white cloak. I wish cloaks were still in fashion.

  7. A non WoW friend couldn't believe I spend $15 month to play a video game. I pointed out that I spend more on pizza and more on beer in a month and that he does too. He spends more on cigarettes in a week. At about 15 hours a week and 4 weeks to a month it comes to about 25 cents an hour to play WoW. It is about the cheapest entertainment going for me.

    Don't get me started on how much I spend on scotch. That tab blows WoW out of the water. =)

  8. Word. We got away from cheap beer after college, so like... that tab sucks. Depending on the night, it takes me longer to down a holiday boss than finish a beer :-).