2017/09/10

Playing with and against Microtransactions

The cover of the edited volume.
The edited volume The Evolution and Social Impact of Video Game Economics has been recently published by Lexington Books (an imprint of Rowman & Littlefield). It features my chapter about acceptance and rejection of video game microtransactions in full-priced mainstream video games. I take a closer look at the implementation of additional monetization models in five video games: Mass Effect 3, Dead Space 3, Dragon Age: Inquisition, Mortal Kombat X, and Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain. Beside a formal analysis of the types of microtransactions including their pricing and overlaps with downloadable content (DLC), I explore the online discussions about the reception of microtransactions. I identify several discourses that feature arguments such as general unaccepability, diversification, cosmetics, single-player traditionalism, cooperation, and transparency. I also focus on declarative behavior of players regarding microtransactions, including various forms of political consumerism and cheating.

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