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The Craziest Things Video Games Have Tried To Charge Real Money For

Updated August 5, 2019 1.1k votes 192 voters 7.9k views12 items

List RulesVote up the in-game purchases that are the biggest ripoffs.

The video game industry is constantly in flux. Gone are the days when someone could buy a title and get instant access to all its content. Instead, publishers and developers are moving towards packaging games as a service, as opposed to a full-fledged title. This means new releases contain options to buy additional items in the form of downloadable content or in-app purchases. While the extra choice might seem like a good idea, some creators have taken advantage of the model, and expect players to pay large amounts of money for poorly executed DLC.

The most maligned titles include expensive in-game purchases that provide very little actual content in exchange for the cash users have to hand over. These entries have additional material only royals would be able to justify buying, while the majority of gamers have to suffer hardship in the face of pay-to-win strategies.

  • Monocle In 'Eve Online'
    Photo: CCP Games

    When a brand-new update launched for EVE Online in 2011, one of the changes included a series of purely cosmetic items for player's avatars. While most of these were the standard types of accessory one would expect to find in a role-playing game, one stood out for the absurdity of the price. The monocle cost three to four times more than any other clothing item from the store. Although it could be traded for with in-game currency, buying it with real cash would set players back $70.

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  • Extra Lives In 'Sonic Lost World'
    Photo: Sega

    Pre-order bonuses often cause outrage with players who feel they lose out on extra content by either waiting until after release to buy a game, or for purchasing it from a different retailer. In the case of Sonic Lost World, Sega offered those who paid for a pre-order the chance to gain 25 extra lives.

    These were described as a way for less experienced players to get a little extra help, but understandably it garnered criticism from longtime Sonic fans. Many felt the game was unfairly challenging, and speculated Sega wanted to encourage people to make sure they paid full price for the title as soon as it launched.

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    New Trains In 'Train Simulator 2018'

    Simulator games have become a big business on PC, with online stores like Steam providing users a taste of what it would be like to hold down certain professions. One of the most popular examples is the Train Simulator franchise. The game sees yearly updates that come free to all users, but there is also an extensive range of DLC.

    The vast majority of this content includes new track locations and additional locomotives. They vary in price from a few dollars to almost the price of the full game. However, if a person wanted to buy every single add-on, it would cost more than $3,000, which could easily be spent on creating an impressive model train collection at home.

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  • World of Warcraft received a unique mount in 2018 in the form of the Reigns of the Mighty Caravan Brutosaur. What made it so special was that it acted as a mobile auction house as well as a mount. Oh, and it cost a tremendous amount of gold to buy. Although it could be bought entirely with in-game currency, it was still fantastically expensive. The five million gold translates to almost $500 of hard cash, something very few players likely have on hand, or can justify spending.

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