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Blizzard lets you transmogrify your cash

It has been recently announced that Blizzard intends to release an in-game store for their genre-conquering MMO World of Warcraft. With this, they have given details on some vanity items which are purely cosmetic. 'Transmogrifiable' helmets to be exact. These items will be sold for real money and will allow the purchasing player the ability to change the look of their currently equipped helmet into the look of the item they've bought on the store.

Feedback from this announcement has been varied. People are in uproar about it and others are eager to get their wallets out and throw down some cash in exchange for their shiney new "hey look at me" helmet.

On the one hand Blizzard have been doing this for a long time now. They have been offering pets and mounts at their store all of which have proven popular.

On the other hand, people are seeing this as the beginning of the end. It's only a matter of time before armour sets and weapons with stats go on sale for real world currency.

In my own personal opinion I think that people are already paying a subscription fee to play the game. If I'm paying a subscription fee to play an MMO, I am under the impression that the money goes towards gaining access to their servers (which are clearly an expensive piece of the game's upkeep), maintenance to the game through bug fixes or server upkeep and regular content releases in the form of patches. Now you can ask yourself how the employees working on new content for the game are paid. How are they funded and where does the money come from? Logically you might think the answer is at least partly from subscription fees. So if the subscription fees are indeed paying for new content, why must people pay more money on top of that fee should they desire the content which is on Blizzard's in-game store?

Seeing as the store items for the game have already proven popular, will this mean you'll see many "lowbies" around Azeroth with their level 12 uncommon quality helm looking like it belongs on a level 90 and looks absolutely rediculous with the rest of their gear? I'm quite sure it will.

Will the subscription numbers finally take a major plummet for the first time in the game's almost nine year history? It's possible.

Get Mass Effect 3 for less than twenty quid

You need an Origin account.

Clear your browser's cookies.

Get yourself a proxy server based in India. You'll need the IP address and the port.

If you're using Firefox, click Tools, then Options. Now click on Advanced at the top, then the Network tab, then click the Settings button.

Click on Manual Proxy Configuration and enter the address and port.

Click OK. Click OK.

Now, click this link:

http://store.origin.com/store/eaemea/en_GB/home/ThemeID.850300/ccRef.en_IN

You should see prices in Rupees. It costs 1500 RP for Mass Effect 3. Click on it, add it to your cart.

You'll need either a Visa or Mastercard to pay. Enter your details, pay for it etc.

You're done.

I did this for Battlefield 3 back before it came out and I got it for something like £18.50

Piracy is not just a PC issue

I've been seeing countless times lately that Xbox360 games are being released to pirate sites much sooner than PC games are. If you couple this with the point made by several console-only players in that a PC to play the latest games will cost you about $5000 and require frequent upgrading, there must be more people pirating the Xbox version of the game than the PC version.

Ok so I know what you're thinking. It's easier to get a PC game downloaded and playing than it is an Xbox360 game due to the console's copy protection. Bear in mind that these days PC games are also sporting more sofisticated (although not crack-proof) copy protection and it often takes piracy groups weeks just to crack the game protection and announce they've done it. Does the first point made outweigh the above mentioned points on PC cost, leak dates and also crack dates?

Another arguement is that most people have a PC, but not an Xbox360, however how many people have a PC they play the latest games on compared to people with an Xbox360?

Is PC piracy really so far ahead of Xbox360 piracy? I'm not so sure.

Fallout 3 Mothership Zeta

Just finished playing through the latest Fallout 3 downloadable content by Bethesda. It's great, but the level design is a little linear. It involves lots of cooridors. It is however still a good addition to the game and has a unique setting. Some nice new weapons thrown in there too of course.

Here's my video playthrough:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NbWydzmPFUs