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Gold Sink Mounts: How do you feel about them?

Do you buy “Gold Sink” mounts?

What is a Gold Sink Mount?

The first obvious gold sink mount was the Bloodfang Cocoon – sold by The Mad Merchant (rare spawn NPC) in Legion Dalaran – for an absolutely ridiculous 2 000 000g. Yes that’s 2 million gold.

For a ground mount that offered nothing more than bragging rights.

But some would say that the Grand Expedition Yak started the trend back in Mists of Pandaria – although its ability to transmog was only added later – when reforging was removed (prior to offering a transmog option – you could reforge at one of its vendors).

At 120 000g it’s what I would call a “reasonable” amount – for a mount that offers you a unique function. It was considered quite expensive back in MoP, but not unreasonable, given its unique ability.

gold sink mounts

Battle for Azeroth seems to have taken the idea of Gold Sink Mounts and applied it to nearly every mount available…

The Mighty Caravan Brutosaur  – commonly referred to as the ‘longboi’ mount – gave players pause, when it appeared – at a whopping 5 000 000g

The cost made it out of reach of the average player  – but seemed to cater to the market of ‘gold makers’ or at least players who spend a significant amount of time playing the auction house.

The Brutosaur has the added bonus of being a mobile auction house mount.

Suddenly the eye-watering high price seemed justified and I can honestly say that this is the sole reason that I’m currently saving gold to be able to afford it!

 

gold sink mounts

How much is too much?

Basic faction rep-gated mounts for 8.2 are sitting behind a whopping 90 000g – and one of them is sitting at an eye-watering 500k.  What.the.fork?

Right now, it feels as though Blizzard has decided that many new mounts should all become gold sinks and the way it APPEARS is to be an attempt to drive the sale of WoW Tokens, makes me disappointed and saddens me greatly.

My guess is that some of Blizzard’s success metrics revolve around: (grossly oversimplified)

  • Player time spent in-game 
  • Profitability per player-hour in-game
  • Overall profitability of add-on sales + subs = future development budget

While I understand that those metrics have to exist because World of Warcraft is a business, it never *felt* like a business before.

It felt like legitimate entertainment, that I was willing to pay for, the same way that I would pay for Sky TV etc

Player Experience vs Business Model

So while the business model might not have changed, the player experience of the model most definitely has. Is this the influence of the mobile gaming industry? The rapid increase of in-game transactions (even though I’m specifically only referring to WoW- Token sales here) has definitely co-incided with the acquisition of King (the makers of Candy Crush).

I’m not anti-big business and I’m mature enough to understand that this doesn’t have to be a fight between evil corporates and hapless consumers – but what bothers me, is that this approach is lessening my personal enjoyment of the game.

What is the solution?

I don’t believe that forum raging or targeted tweeting is the solution here – the only lucid solution is to “vote with your feet” i.e. if you were in a shop and you didn’t like what was in it – you take your feet out the door.

I’m not willing to do that, since I still derive a lot of enjoyment from the game – and frankly, as an introverted person, it’s 80% of my social life (not just WoW, but my wider online gaming community).

I want Blizzard to fix this, but I am just not sure how they can.

Do you buy the gold sink mounts because you want to collect all the mounts?

On a personal note, my only way forward is to improve my ability to make gold in the game.  I’m not averse to the sale of WoW Tokens, but I find it a lot more satisfying to generate the gold myself.

I’ll talk more about how I’m doing that, in my next post.

About The Author

Artenesse

Artenesse specialises in digital graphic design, and has been a creative professional since 2006. Blogging since 2004 and gaming since before the internet was actually a thing.

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