Gaming Budgets and Spending Money

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.


*rough estimate.


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…


Help me bloggers…you’re my only hope!

Last Day To Back HEX!

So we are down to the wire, 30 days later.


Hex: Shards of Fate, the very first TCG/MMO crossover has less than a day remaining.   Most of the higher specialty tiers are picked over at this point, what with the campaign shooting for a final stretch goal of 2.5 million dollars.  Fans were upset that the final goal, which is to put on a HexCon in Las Vegas in the next year, with free invites to a special day of activities for King ($120) level backers and above.    But Crypto has been adamant that their primary goal is getting the game into our hands as quickly as possible, and to that end, have refused to do anything that would delay a release.


In fact, several times since my last post Crypto has stuck to their guns, saying no to fans for clear and well reasoned…well…reasons.   And at other times, where there was no harm/no foul situations, Crypto was more than happy to add in fans desires.   To give two examples:  they have refused to add any more numbers to the limited tiers, despite the possibility of getting even more money, because that would not be fair to those who signed into those limited slots and devalue their investment.   And in the latter category, when fans asked if the double card bonus that was unlocked as one of the stretch rewards could apply to *all* the Kickstarter exclusive cards and not just the PvE ones, Crypto said:  sure, why not?


And despite my bluster about sticking to a Warrior Tier ($35), as I’ve watched Crypto navigate this morass and handle their success with aplomb, humor, and heads-screwed-on-straight, I’ve come to admire them.   And maybe even trust them.


So one night, when a $250 Pro Player Tier opened up…I snagged it.   I didn’t even think twice.   Even now, as the timer counts down, I may chicken out and move back down, but no further down than King Tier.   I’ve tried to figure out why I was initially comfortable with dropping $250 on the game, because that is far outside my comfort zone.


And I think the only angle I can come up with is that that’s about the cost of a game + lifetime sub in the MMO world.    Which is basically what that tier is, with free weekly booster drafts included (3 boosters a week for free basically.  For life).  I mean, I spent $150 on Star Wars, followed later by another, what, $70 or so for a six month sub…but that wasn’t all at the same time.   And it was close enough to my birthday that I could convince my wife to let me do that in exchange for no presents.  This one….man.


Anyway, stay or go, I’m still pretty invested in the game at this point.   Beyond Crypto, the two live feeds put me over the top.   The game looks fun, clean, and incredible.   The MMO elements are exciting and the dungeons interesting.


My only real curiosity at this point, is not about the stretch goals, but about how much I will, when the timer dings, have spent on this Kickstarter…

Top Five Things in EVE I Still Need to Learn

5) Probes – I have no idea how to even begin to probe.  I guess I need to buy a launcher and a ship and try it out.  But in truth, I’m not even sure I know what I’m looking for.  Somehow though, it involves the Archeology skill, and that’s awesome.

4) Reasearch and Invention – I know there are agents for it, but as to how they work and who can use them…

3) Low Sec Ratting – last time I tried this, I was assured my Vexor was plenty tough enough.  I warped out a few minutes later short a few drones and with red hashes all the way into my structure.  Clearly I’m missing something here.

2) What Roid Goes Where – I found out this weekend that one can mine Nocxium in hi sec after all.  Go figure.

1) And the #1 thing I still need to learn in EVE  – How To Make Money.  How is that people with characters a month older than mine have, withoyt PLEXing, managed to make hundres of millions of ISK, when I still have yet to break the 40 million mark?  Heck, I’m not even close to 40 anymore after building the Prophecy and some related purchases…

Maybe I need to take a break and give that 2 week Conan return a whirl.