What's with Black Desert Online's cash shop? ($32 for one costume??)

Are the prices in Black Desert Online's cash shop reasonable? I explore that in this article.

Many MMOs that don't have subscriptions, such as Black Desert Online, have cash shops. If this is a good thing or not is a debate that people have had for years, but generally it is expected. You see them in a lot of F2P(Free to Play) games, but even some B2P (Buy to Play) MMOs have cash shops, too.

The issue many people have with the Black Desert Online cash shop is that there are very expensive items and some of those items are not what you would expect of a game you have to buy to play. Most of the time you will see just cosmetic or minor convenience items in a game that uses this payment model.

Cash Shop Etiquette

It is generally expected in any game that doesn't have a subscription, to have a cash shop. These cash shops can quickly turn games into P2W (Pay to Win), where players only need to spend money to succeed and get the best stuff. This is something you see in F2P games a lot.

You must buy Black Desert Online to play it. This should mean that the cash shop shouldn't bee too expensive and offer nothing that could give the slightest advantage by spending real money.

However, that is not entirely the case in BDO.

Expensive Items and Pay to Win?

One thing to note is that $1=100 Pearls, the cash shop currency. This means that most full costumes cost $32. Seems a little pricey for just one costume in a game you have to pay for. It is cosmetic, though, so no problem, right?

Well, let me tell you about the Camouflage Costumes. These costumes hide your name from other players. This is purely advantageous in a sandbox MMO like this where pvp, especially world pvp, is a huge focus. For $32, you can hide your name and ambush players much easier.

There is also a boat, an entire boat, that you can buy from the cash shop. What makes this worse is that according to the details, you can sell this on the marketplace for a lot of money. This is completely a P2W tactic, and hopefully will be changed by launch.

People have also complained about the dyes. Although you can pick certain base colors, the actual dyes you get are always random. You can also only dye 1 things at a time, so this can add up quick.

There are also items you can buy with Loyalty points, points you get just from logging in every day, but the above items are not available for purchase with those points.

What do you think about the cash shop in Black Desert Online? Is it too much, or do the prices and items offered seem reasonable?

Published Feb. 22nd 2016
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