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Its not too often you see a thoughtful article on micro-transactions; many are screeds posted in anger over being nickle-and-dimed to freely progress, or simply to optimize the grinding experience.

I think if you take the article to a logical conclusion, although it wasn't explicitly stated, it re-enforces the notion that a player should pay something to experience the fullness of the game, and receive something worth experiencing in return. One of the troubles with simply selling progress acceleration, either directly or though up-level items, is that it devalues the game itself by setting the general expectation that games should be cheap or free to players who are simply willing to grind away. Already this notion is becoming common enough that its not uncommon to see low-scoring "revenge reviews" on games which lock content away from non-paying customers, and on the flip-side, too much design focus on creating and retaining so-called 'whales'.

Thanks for some worthwhile insights. Even if they might seem obvious after reading, the best insights usually do.

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Very interesting and well written article! Thank you!

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Thanks for some worthwhile insights. Even if they might seem obvious after reading, the best insights usually do.

Agreed. Very insightful sir.

Since I started taking a more serious crack at indie-game development, I've started analyzing the games I play more. The Hearthstone "unwrapping of your reward" is something I noticed as well. They could have just instantly showed your rewards. Instead, there's a huge show of exciting visuals and a build up of anticipation. I'd say a large amount of time went into designing that whole experience.

- Eck

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