The term Pay2Win is a red rag for most gamers and an absolute no-go in games. Diablo Immortal is currently proving this very emphatically. However, such types of monetization have been on the market since the first Free2Play games and have repeatedly shown that they work – at least from the point of view of the respective finance departments. Therefore, for many, many years, there has been a fear that with every new Free2Play, Pay2Win will also be introduced.
Everyone defines Pay2Win a little bit differently. Sometimes it is laid out more generously and sometimes petty – depending on the genre. But it is clear that if you can “buy” a clear, playful advantage in a PvP game, then the limit to Pay2Win has clearly been crossed. Many years ago, Blizzard saw the same thing as not being allowed to exist in large multiplayer titles.
When Blizzard made fun of Pay2Win…
The occasion was the changeover from StarCraft 2 to a new Free2Play model. At that time, the first fears about Pay2Win haunted the community. Because in some other RTS it was not exactly unusual at the time that you had to pay for access to new units with hard real money. Blizzard not only took these fears seriously and built a very fair Free2Play model, but also made fun of the competition.
But just watch the following video for yourself:
If you watch the video today and have Diablo Immortal’s payment model in mind, you don’t know whether to laugh or cry. There are just 4.5 years between the video and the Immortal release. A long time for the gaming industry, but actually not that long ago. Maybe the video should be played again to the current managers at Diablo Immortal … in a continuous loop … 24 hours a day … could possibly help to remember what Blizzard once did.