The level 90 boost debate started after the latest patch 5.4.7 went online and accidentally the feature’s UI appeared briefly. The pricing displayed was $60.
This glitch in the system might be a placeholder, and not the correct pricing. So you shouldn’t worry too much until we see the feature coming online in a few days from now. Remember that one time with the Warlords of Draenor/Karazhan theorycrafting? It was an experiment a developer had within the Karazhan dungeon, not really a new Karazhan dungeon nor phased event as some people thought.
For the sake of discussion, what if the pricing for level 90 boosting was true? Certainly, $60 seems a huge price tag. In comparison, the store mount is $25. Other services include:
Faction Change: $30
Name Change: $10
Character Transfer: $25
Race Change: $25
Appearance Change: $15
During the Activision Blizzard Q4 2013 conference call, Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime said:
”We think that this is a great feature that will make it easier for friends to play together in World of Warcraft. It’s also attractive for veteran players, who have already experienced the level and process multiple times and want to quickly raise a new character to deal with end-content.” (read the transcript).
At $60, for a newcomer – considering all the costs associated with getting the game, it might be too high.
For example, the World of Warcraft Digital Download costs $19.99 which includes World of Warcraft, Burning Crusade, Wrath of the Lich King and Cataclysm.
Mists of Pandaria costs $39.99 and the Warlords of Draenor likely $39.99 too. That’s $100 + the uncertain $60 price tag for level 90 boost — total: $160 … ouch. But wait — did you miss the Mists of Pandaria page change? It is now only $19.99. There is also the question mark — will the World of Warcraft Digital Download include Mists of Pandaria? There is simply too many blanks we don’t know yet. We don’t have a release date either. Many new service features and price changes might happen but we simply don’t know of it yet. Maybe the Blizzard marketing team hasn’t even planned it yet.
For friends coming for the first time, it would make sense if they get one level 90 boost free. Most likely this is it. For veterans who prefer to play an alt in Warlords of Draenor and wish to skip the level 1-90 experience, any cost the level 90 boost feature gets might be fair play. It is a commodity.
Overall, the level 90 boost is a good idea. Why play level 1 to 90 for the fifth+ time when you are a veteran and know it all? Wouldn’t you better spend that time exploring Warlords of Draenor and growing your character than spend 20 days or more leveling an alt?
If Blizzard pumps out expansions on a yearly basis, and we still get content patches, there is a good pace there. You might also wish to use the level 90 boost in the eventuality that the next expansion after Warlords of Draenor introduced a new race. Play the level 1-10 starting zone for the lore value, then boost it to 90.
I hate that everyone (Blizz and fans) tries to drown the problem behind a fake debate around the pricing.
The real problem is: Why is there, more and more, e-shop elements that have been introduced to video games to support a free 2 play model in the first place, into a subscription based game.
Forget about the balance of what a boost means to the game, forget about tricks people could come up with if the price was lower than $60, or higher, because this is exactly what Blizz wants people to talk about.
The real issue, that should be debated is: Do we want Blizzard to keep focusing on services that gives them money or content that keeps people subbed?
For them it’s an easy decision. They crunch numbers, and they come up with that selling this $60 service gives them more money than not selling it, even if players lose interest or respect in the long run.