A recent change to how World of Warcraft players can purchase game time has rubbed some Champions of Azeroth the wrong way, and has others wondering if WoW should still require a subscription at all.
Ever since 2004, World of Warcraft has been transporting players to Azeroth and beyond, but now players are wondering why the game still requires a paid subscription more than 15 years after release – and why Blizzard is making it harder to play without one.
At this point in WoW, most players are used to waiting up to a year or more for new content after updates, and expect to shell out $40 for each new expansion along with their monthly subscription fees. This led Reddit user ‘Last_Judicator’ to wonder how Blizzard has any reason to still charge monthly fees for playing the game in the year 2021.
“We’re literally sitting without content for sometimes over a year, and the one time we’re getting a big content drop, it’s another paid 40 bucks expansion,” they posted on the official WoW subreddit. “What exactly is it what we’re paying monthly for at this point? I mean it’s definitely not the privilege of not having an item shop anymore like we once told ourselves when talking about f2p.”
Based on the amount of upvotes this simple query received — more than 8000 at the time of writing — it’s plain to see plenty of players aren’t happy to still be shilling out $15 every month. As one user pointed out the reason Blizzard hasn’t made the game free-to-play is probably very simple: People are and will still pay the subscription.
That doesn’t explain why the publisher removed the option to buy game time in their store with so-called “Blizzard bucks” (money loaded into the online store) though.
The option to buy playtime in the store basically meant players could still gain access to the servers and their toons, without having to put their credit card info on file with Blizzard and having them automatically charge you each month.
Players could play for as long or as short as they wanted to, and it was a popular option just after expansions for those who didn’t want to go all-in on a subscription and didn’t care about the minor bonuses (like the item shop) associated with it.
However, based on the current firestorm of controversy that Blizzard is experiencing, subscription and payment issues might not be the biggest thing WoW players have to worry about at the moment.