Despite Ubisoft Massive's previous statement that microtransactions wouldn't be making an appearance in Tom Clancy's The Division, the third-person shooter/RPG hybrid set in a post-calamity New York now has a premium shop where you can buy items for a currency bought with real money.
Before you prepare the torches and pitchforks; these premium items are entirely cosmetic. These items are bought with a special currency called Premium Credits which you can buy from the PlayStation Store, the Xbox Game Store and via Steam and Uplay with real money.
Premium Credit DLC packs come in 5 flavors:
- $4.99 for 500 Premium Credits
- $9.99 for 1050 Premium Credits
- $19.99 for 52400 Premium Credits
- $34.99 for 4600 Premium Credits
- $49.99 for 7200 Premium Credits
We are providing more ways that players can express themselves and customize the look of their character. Weapon skins and outfits have been incredibly successful in the community to allow players to find the authentic look they desire, and we wanted to push this aspect even further.These items are on a weekly rotation and refresh every week after scheduled maintenance. To see what's in stock, you have to seek out the Premium Vendor in your Base of Operations. To make it easier to distinguish between regular customization items and bought customization items, a new tab has been added to the inventory containing all your purchases.
Because of Ubisoft Massive's previous stance against microtransactions The Division, a lot of people understandably expressed their annoyance on the The Divisions subreddit. Microtransactions in AAA games have been a sore point for many gamers and their inclusion at a later point post-release doesn't sit well with many players.
As for their own justification, Ubisoft has this to say:
While we want to offer more opportunities for you to customize your characters, we also need to find a way to do so sustainably without impacting the resources available for the main game. Monetizing them will allow us to keep creating more vanity option independently without any impact on the rest of the game production.Tom Clancy's The Division needs and uses a constant internet connection to make use of its MMO-like infrastructure. This essentially makes this game a "live" game, with content updating and changing as you go out to explore the world with other players. Because of this, the game needs to be continuously maintained which costs money and manpower, something they can't recoup via a subscription model like some of the full-fledged MMO's do because they simply don't give players that option. Selling cosmetic microtransactions ensure that The Division is an ongoing project, which means that it'll generate more revenue they can use to acquire the resources they need to continue developing the game over its lifespan.
The other side of the argument also has a few points. Some players are scared of Ubisoft getting too greedy, at which point they might offer items and gear you need in order to play this game effectively. Some players can see a scenario where Ubisoft tunes the in-game economy in such a way that purchasing these items with real money seems like the better option. Both of these hypothetical scenarios we've seen practices like these in other games, generally referred to as "pay 2 win". This is not a good thing if you want players to compete on even ground without the need to shell out extra money.
Ubisoft has stated that none of the items on offer will alter the gameplay in any way, offering them purely as optional cosmetics you can use to customize the look of your character.
Tom Clancy's The Division recently got its third expansion in the form of the Last Stand DLC, which added new parts to the Dark Zone as well as a deathmatch-with-a-twist competitive PvPvE game mode.
What do you think of the newly implemented Premium DLC shop? Do you think it's a harmless addition or do you see it as a foreboding sign of things to come for The Division?