What’s a Soapbox?

Warning: My personal opinion is below. Also, I’m not meaning this to be crazy ranty, so I’ll try to keep myself under control ^.^

So, I woke up this morning, started making my coffee, started looking at Twitter, and then I started seeing news that the Alliance Chopper from the PR stunt Azeroth Choppers, which the Horde won, would be available for sale. For 100,000 gold. Okay, so that’s a thing.

Yes I’m calling it a PR stunt, because that’s what I believe it was. Nothing against Blizzard, but it was certainly a move out of left field. There are already motorcycles in-game, and as someone who’s main is an Engineer and can make them, this kind of made me tilt my head to the side as I looked at my computer screen. It did allow them to branch out into a different market, I guess? Kind of cool to include greasemonkeys in with all of us other crazies.

The horde won the contest, hooray, even though I was seeing a lot of sentiment from both sides that nobody really loved either design, but hey, it is neat that they managed to craft bikes in the style and theme of both factions, while still trying to keep it badass and manly (I guess)! /flex

When I saw the news (some of it whining, a lot of it whining) this morning on Twitter, it made me curious. Was it the price that people were upset about? For me that’s the initial reaction, OMG WHY SO EXPENSIVE BLIZZ ?!?!?!! Then once I rein myself back, yes 100k is a LOT of fake money, but it’s still fake money. There are enough people playing the Auction House that they can afford to buy it. There are enough rare mount collectors that they can afford to buy it. There’s always gold sinks (never literally, although that’s a funny idea) in every expansion, and I guess this is another one for this one? I’ve never been one to have a lot of gold, I think right now is the most I’ve had, ever, and I have a grand total of like 50k.

Here’s the thing that I am mainly questioning though. Yes the horde won the contest, no I’m not saying the alliance should never ever get their chopper, but what is this accomplishing? One more mount for someone to display in their stable in their garrison? Bragging rights? Jealousy or scorn from their fellow players, or guildies? I see people galumphing around on the mammoth, or breezing around on a mount they bought off the Black Market, and I think that’s neat. Good for them, having that much money to throw around, to collect what they want. But 100k? That’s a little steep guys and gals. What makes it worth that much? Can you have a friend ride along with you, like the engineer mount? Is it worth it to you epeen, to your pride, to have that mount worth that much money sitting in your mount tab with all your other mounts? We can only ride one at once, and sure with the no-flight-rule in Warlords (which I firmly support) there will be more opportunity for us to ride our poor abandoned ground mounts, but seriously? Is it necessary to be 100,000 gold? Can I ride it into battle? Are their vendors on it? Or is it just a reminder of a PR boost?

No I’m not saying the alliance shouldn’t get this mount, I think that for all the effort poured into that show, both factions should be able to get their mounts. I don’t think putting that high of a price tag on it is beneficial however. Maybe I’m alone in my reasoning, I know I am seeing a lot of ‘wow that’s expensive’ instead of questioning why the price has to be so high. Maybe we shouldn’t question it. Blizzard always does what they want, for the most part. They listen to community feedback, sure, but they’re still trying to run a business.

I will always love this game, I think it will take a lot for me to finally set it aside and move on to another, but I have invested a lot of time and energy into this pixellated world and have started to with it’s community, and I don’t like the feeling that Blizzard is getting desperate in these waning hours of Mists before Warlords. There seems to be a lot of HEY LOOK HEY IT’S SOMETHING NEW AND COOL AND SHINY AND LOOK HEY. Some things however, leave a semi sour taste in my mouth, and make me question the why and how of the decision making process. Although, I do have to say they are getting the bare minimum of what they want out of this announcement.

People are talking about it 😉

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5 thoughts on “What’s a Soapbox?

  1. I haven’t decided how I feel about the Alliance chopper price tag. I think it’s another gold sink, but people will buy it anyway, those that can afford it. Collectors, achievement hounds, faction fans, etc. I want the mount achievement and will probably eventually buy it, but it’s not high on my purchase list. I’ve got about 25k gold scattered across my toons, so it’ll be a long time before I gather enough gold on one toon to buy it.

    And there might be another shiney that I want more by then. xD

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  2. Honestly I think it’s a great idea to use competitions to spark interest and reward the victors but still give the losers a chance to get a reward after some work.
    Just imagine another competition where blizz asks us to vote on a horde-themed pet vs alliance-themed pet instead of a bike!
    Alliance lost the competition, so if they want their bike they SHOULD spend a fair amount of fake currency to get it. I do think though that a few zero’s could be removed. The bike should be sold similar to the other gold-sink mounts, somewhere around 10k.

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  3. Honestly, I didn’t really care about the whole thing. I only watched the first episode before I got bored, and I only voted (Alliance, of course) so that my characters would get a free mount. Both bikes seemed uninspired to me, but truthfully I don’t know or care much about motorcycles.
    When the horde won, I was mildly disappointed (as in, ‘Darn, oh well. I do have a few horde characters that can use it), but again didn’t care. Like many, I expected the alliance bike to become available in some way. And then it was, for 100k gold.
    I guess I’m so apathetic to the whole thing that the price tag didn’t even bother me. I don’t have a super ton amount of gold, so the bike is far out of my price range, but even if it were only 50k I don’t think I’d buy it then either. I didn’t care about the whole thing, so owning the mount means very little to me.
    This being said, I did and still do find this promotion event kind of strange too. Motorcycles? I mean they are cool I guess. I feel like there were so many other outlets for PR (I would LOVE to see a Warcraft themed real life house) and that picking motorcycles was an odd choice.

    TL:DR: I’m completely apathetic to the whole thing, the bike design, the winner, and the alliance bike price tag. But you are right, Blizzard has created quite a stir with this one!

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