Amid community-wide concern about Guild Wars 2′s in-game microtransaction system, ArenaNet has announced a change to the purchasable content delivery model that will “make sure those who have money don’t have an edge up on other players,” according to ArenaNet President Mike O’Brien.
“We’ve been hearing a lot of concerns from our player community with regards to those who wish to spend real-world money being given unique advantages to progress faster through the game,” said O’Brien. “So we are changing the way that those players can pay for items in the in-game cash shop. Now, they can pay only in blood.”
All physical versions of the game will come with do-it-yourself blood drawing kits for those who wish to convert their own plasma to in-game currency. Payment models for the “blood shop” have not yet been released, though it has been speculated that a pint of blood will be worth about 1,600 gems.
What players will do with the harvested blood is not yet known. All requests for information sent to Guild Wars 2 publisher NCSoft went unreturned on GuildWarsInsider deadline.
An ArenaNet employee who declined to be named due to his inability to speak publicly, and only spoke anonymously after a sizable blood donation from one of our newest writers, said that those who harvest blood will be given point-by-point sets of instructions on how to collect the blood in ZipLock bags and legally transport it to ArenaNet’s headquarters for “consumption.” The employee noted that blood can’t be transported by U.S. Mail or most, if not all, package couriers.
“We’re confident that this will balance concerns about players using real-world money to buy experience and item-finding boosts in our blood shop,” said O’Brien. “And if it doesn’t, then we don’t know what we can do to make these people happy.”
“But we’re pretty damn famished after five years of development,” continued O’Brien. “Poor Martin [Kerstein, ArenaNet's community lead] has so many holes in his body from the last time he walked into the play-testing area, that he was hospitalized for a week. Now we wait for his plushy, succulent self to return.”
Digital editions of the game are expected to include a PDF document highlighting how players can safely draw blood using simple tools that can be purchased at big box stores like Wal-Mart and Target.