I mentioned previously that I was a little short on spending money. You see, I was doing a little money upkeeping, budget work, etc. You know, all that stuff you have to do when someone starts using your apparently stolen card numbers for nefarious purposes. (On the bright side, there are lots of safety nets for that sort of thing, and in this case I can safely say that this was not my fault!)
Anyway, that along with the summer sales has led me to doing something I hadn’t done in a while, which is seeing how much I spend on games this year. Years ago it was a pretty set amount – I’d ask for whatever new games I wanted as Christmas or birthday gifts, and just paid out 1 or 2 subs a month for a year. Back in those days when F2P was not an option. And I never really got a discount because I could only bounce around month to month and there was always some shiny new game to check out, all of which required a sub. Throw in some scratch money for the occasional clearance game, and it was a pretty easy number to conjure with.
So I was both shocked and also relieved when I totaled my “fun” spending for this year and encountered about the same number.
On the one hand, shocked because the only real sub I am running these days is for Xbox Live and its a bit cheaper than your plain old run-of-the-mill MMO sub. Not to mention we are only halfway through the year! And that there is some money not counted there because of gift cards that offset.
On the other hand, our life and job situation is better, and there are some one-time purchases in there (I had to break down and buy a bigger hard drive for Xbox because of my daughter’s purchase and obsession with Minecraft, for example). And since that money is not only games but also includes books I’ve bought for pleasure and my soccer league fees, I guess its not too bad (though fantasy football season approached with alarming speed). Part of me is convinced that is a far cheaper hobby total than what some of my peers are involved with. Like, say, owning a boat – which involves gas and maintenance and such. Then again, as my wife is quick to point out, at least in that hobby the rest of the family gets to enjoy the spent money in some way (time on the lake), whereas my hobby is cheaper but in not way contributes back to the family.
It would be easy to turn this into a tale of how F2P can rake in more money than sub games, but that’s not the case really. On the one hand, as I mentioned, that’s a mixed bag of hobbies up there, and the spending on F2P games actually accounts for very little of the overall total (about a quarter of it actually). So it would be easier to say that in the last couple of years, with the advent of F2P, it has not only allowed me to jump into several different games, but its also allowed me to spread my hobby money around into other areas. I appear to be slightly less obsessed with games in general and MMO’s in particular. On the other hand, after looking at the totals, I understand why my wife has threatened to ban me from Kickstarter.
So what about you? Are you spending the same as you did back in the days of subs only? More? Less?
And, most importantly, please tell me that some of you are spending about the same as me. Otherwise I’m going to lose a discussion with my wife…