Cassandra (sesquipedality) wrote,
Cassandra
sesquipedality

It's a good job you don't have to understand something to be able to exploit it

Those of you who are gamers will probably be aware that Bioware have released a game called Dragon Age, which is a hack and slash fest very much in the tradition of Baldur's Gate (which will mean a great deal to some, and nothing to others). I wasn't going to pick it up, but the reviews were so positive, I couldn't not. It is about as fantastic as the reviews make out, although if you're not a fan of tactical RPGs, it should definitely be avoided.

All the non-gamers have probably now TL;DRed, which is a shame, as I'm actually posting to talk about modern economics, and why it's borked. Now this is an example from a computer game, but to be honest I've done similar things with all sorts of stuff from PC speakers to espresso machines, and I don't get it.

Cost of Dragon Age online via Steam: £30
Cost of Dragon Age special online edition, with a bit of extra content including a moderately useful shared stash: £40

Cost of DVD Dragon age from a UK seller on ebay dispatched to arrive on release day: £22
Cost of extra content via online purchase: £4.70ish

So, I have paid 27 quid for something I could have bought for 40 on Steam through a delivery system that's supposedly cheaper than physical media. Pedants among you will be aware that I'm down a couple of extra magic items by doing it this way, but essential I've got the special edition for less than the price of the standard edition, and got to play just as soon as everyone else.

It seems sad to me that modern economics penalises people who don't do basic investigation. I'd also be really gutted if I'd bought the special edition, then found out the content is available for less than the difference in price between editions. But not only is it harsh, it's also incomprehensible to me. How do the economics of this work, exactly?

(I don't understand why I didn't get the ring you're supposed to get for pre-ordering, but them's the breaks - to be fair I only pre-ordered two days before release, but it's still technically a pre-order, right.)

(BTW, Dragon Age players - be sure to download the character creator, roll yourself a quick character then upload it. This will net you a moderately nifty attribute increasing ring that's well worth having.)
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