What does WoW save you?

I know some folks will say a subscription game is expensive, and $15 US is not cheap, and certainly not free. A full time worker or an absolute game-addict can justify the cost a bit more, and its all relative.

[inc rant warning]

If the idea of handing over money every week for something that is entirely virtual bother you, don’t get car/house/boat/life insurance. Or if you’re interested in good free gaming with a community you can always try NeverWinter Nights, as many v1 and v2 servers are out there with dedicated (fanatical) players.

The resources needed to play wow is more than just the subscription, its also the internet connection, and the time commitment to get real value. Without at least a 256k connection, wow is pretty choppy. I know that as my connection throttles back to 64k if I use over my monthly quota, and I really notice the difference. Also without at least 4 hours a week I’d say you’ll be struggling to get any sense of achievement and progress. But then thats only 16 hour a month, and most people probably spend at least that much time watching crappy TV, or waiting at bus stops.

And some would say that its just too expensive. But there is also the money saved by playing the same game regularly (which is what I’m ranting about). As I consider WoW a hobby, I’ll compare it to other hobbies.

The following is my justification for my Warcraft’s subscription, as A vs B:

A: Warcraft + Internet subscription = $55 per month, for 25 hours, which I’ll say is about 55c per hour.

B: My hobbie might otherwise be:

  • Movie + snacks = $18 for 3 hour outing = $6 per hour.
  • Reading a Novel = $20 for 30 hours = 60c per hour.
  • Free to air TV = Free, but consider the quality and the ads.
  • Pay TV = $35 to $55 per month, and slightly better quality, worse ads.
  • DVD from rental shop = $6.50 for 2 hours, high quality, better ads = $3.25 per hour.
  • Follow a sport/team/group = many $100s in memberships, gear, and petrol per year.

The outcome is that WoW is a good way to spend time, and makes reasonable sense ecconomically too. And I’ve ignored the aspect interactivity or interaction with other humans, as I didn’t think a rough comparison would make any sense or have a wide enough spread if these had to be broken down with additional value judgements about why another person plays. Maybe another post might do that.


3 thoughts on “What does WoW save you?

  1. And I’ve ignored the aspect interactivity or interaction with other humans

    This is exactly the point I was going to make in response to you, actually 🙂

    If I weren’t playing WoW, all the while chatting with my friends, hearing about their kids, jobs, etc, I’d be sitting on my butt watching awful reality tv 🙂

    Great article.

  2. I think your WoW calculation should be $1.20/hour.

    And I completely agree that it makes general economic sense, as many of us won’t spend all of our internet on WoW, and so the internet price dedicated to WoW is even less than calculated. I’ve tried to explain this to RL friends but they still think I’m silly! =P

  3. Glad it makes sense, and although its a little like preaching to the converted, it does hint that the best hobbies are also economical.

    In all wow’ing away the hours is at least as productive as spending it watching TV. All we technically do is change some numbers in a database, but TV does not even do that.

    My 2nd choice of hobbie would have been reading novels, which is also a good thing in terms of development and money.

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