I understand the sentiment 100%! I play Star Trek Online, and it's got it's C-store for those microtransactions. If there's a system to learn how to
manipulate/play in your favor, you just have to learn how.
For energy credits, which are in-game cash for the exchange & NPC vendors, you can increase your cap to a billion from 10 mil. That, however, costs
real cash to do. I did do this, but there's a work around to using cash that I'll explain shortly. It cost me the equivalent of $5 worth of "zen"
(PWE's currency in-game)
Tier 6 (max level/end game) ships cost $30
in the c-store, T5's are $20-$25. If you want to upgrade your T5 to a T6 instead of just buying a
T6, it's $7. Per T5 ship you own.
If you're in a fleet (guild) and want a ship that is restricted to fleets, that's $5 per fleet ship module. I think those ships cost you 4 modules
($20 to get)
Character outfits run the equivalent of $5.50. Increasing your duty officer slots by 25 personnel runs $2.25. A specialty Bridge Officer (liberated
Borgs, Aenar, Ferasan, Caitian) run you $6. A playable Fed Klingon, a Trill, Ferasan, Caitian, Reman all run $6 also.
If you want a Shared Account bank, that's $10. It unlocks a bank type that allows all characters on your account to put unbound or account-bound stuff
in there. It's actually really handy & more efficient than the in-game mail system, and I did get this (but not with real cash)
Then you have the worst money suck of all. Lockbox keys. These boxes are random drops in game, that are only useable if you buy a single key for
$1.25, or a 10-pack for $11.25. This is really their cash cow for microtransactions, because everyone has done it with real cash at least once, even
There's a ton more, but those are the most commonly used/bought things.
I've bought 3 T6 $30 ships, a couple of T5 ships, T5 to T6 upgrades, several Bridge Officers, several playable species, TONS of outfits, a lot of
lockbox keys, the shared account bank slot, etc. I've only spent about $20 real bucks on one ship, the Odyssey cruiser years ago when it debuted.
Everything else, I've used dilithium
for. I think I've bought about $150 worth of in-game stuff with dilithium alone. This is another in-game
currency, usually used for fleet projects & a store for dilithium-buy items. What we savvy players do is watch the Zen exchange like hawks, you can
trade in a certain amount of dilithium for a single Zen. This adds up, sometimes very quickly. Right now, the Zen costs about 160 dilithium, which
means I could get around $3 worth of Zen today if I traded it in on one character. However, I'm a saver, I squirrel it away for months sometimes, and
get a huge trade-in. One time, I had almost $100 in there, just from saving & exchanging dilithium for Zen, which is essentially real cash if you buy
it with real cash. Dilithium is a work-around to not using any cash at all. It takes time for a new player to figure this out, because you also have
to figure out how to rake in that dilithium. Duty officer assignments, queue rewards, zone rewards, it's plenty possible but takes time & patience.
Plus, they give you a hurdle to overcome. You're allowed as much dilithium as you can acquire in unrefined form at any given time (you can only have
10 million unrefined all together if you save that much) You can only refine 8,000 per day, however. So this can take all year for someone to
stockpile enough to go on a full-fledged C-store spree with, but again, it's totally doable with patience.
And don't get me started on the Lobi store. That's a reward currency found in lockboxes. If you want something out of that store, you need Lobi, and
the only way to get it is in lockboxes, which means you buy keys one way or the other (players can also sell them on the exchange, as they're not
bound, thus rates average around 2 million EC per key) I've got quite the stockpile from buying keys off the exchange & the occasional dil-for-zen buy
from the C-store. Now all I need for one of those rare Lobi store bridge officers or coveted store ships is a good sale. I'm a little like a Ferengi
in that regard, I don't use that store unless they run a sale, because Lobi are hard to get a large quantity of.
Again, if there's a system to beat, figure out how. It can save you a ton of real money
edit on 1/23/2015 by Nyiah because: (no reason