We've heard some pretty fan-friendly GTA V Online details the past few weeks, but the latest GTA V Online details might be less than welcome news for gamers who balk at the pay-to-play philosophy. According to a report from Eurogamer, the price list for GTA V Online microtransactions has been discovered in the code of Rockstar's website and it paints a picture of an online scene where money talks.
The leaked GTA V Online details reveal the price list for in-game cash cards. It's exactly what it sounds like. Pay real world money for in-game cash and get a leg up on the competition. Here's the breakdown of the cash cards spotted in the GTA V Online details leak:
$100,000 Red Shark Cash Card £1.99
$200,000 Tiger Shark Cash Card £3.49
$500,000 Bull Shark Cash Card £6.99
$1,250,000 Great White Shark Cash Card £13.49
The prices in the GTA V Online details leak come from the U.K., but the U.S. conversions are $3.19, $5.60, $11.21 and $21.64. The existence of the cash cards was revealed two days ago on Reddit, but at the time no pricing information was discovered. However, the Reddit leak did discover within the code of the game a sales pitch for the cash cards:
Cash is king in this town. Solve your money problems and help get what you want across Los Santos and Blaine County with the purchase of cash packs for Grand Theft Auto Online. All purchased cash is automatically deposited into your character's bank account. Spend wisely, cash therapy is fleeting.
The GTA V Online details leak on Reddit also uncovered an image of the upcoming cash cards:
There is a small chance that this system won't go into place in GTA V Online because it has yet to be confirmed by Rockstar. But the reaction online from fans is obvious: this blows. GTA V Online was looking pretty awesome. Last month, we reported on an interview with Rockstar exec Lezlie Benzies who boasted that GTA V Online would have nearly 700 missions for players and their friends.
"I think there are about 700 missions at this time. We hope you have a 500 always available, and are renewed continuously. You can also go to the Rockstar Social Club and get off more missions. So you can connect and download any player missions to populate your world online, both from friends and from other users," Benzies said.
There is also a ton of GTA V Online details coming in next month's Game Informer. CVG posted a list of some of the features revealed in the article and they also sound promising. You get to create your own character, including his/her backstory. There is a balanced player system that lets gamers pick who they play with and who they can avoid. The missions involve multiple steps just like the heists in the main game, with each team member being assigned different roles in the caper.
Oh, and other players can rob you and take your money.
This GTA V Online detail, I think, could potentially cause a lot of grief for players. The purchased money is automatically deposited, which is good, but the robberies in general could cause massive headaches. And don't think players are beyond trolling the sh-t out of each other and just camping outside banks to wait for players heading in to make deposits.
Rockstar has a pretty solid reputation among fans for not doing microtransactions or week three DLC and other low-ball moves other games companies do in order to maximize profits *cough* EA! *cough* so this move is understandably causing some head scratching. But I'm going to reserve my judgment until I get my butt online.
Here's why: GTA V Online has the potential to be a huge, incredibly fun online world the likes of which we haven't seen. Yes, games like Payday 2 bring the heist concept to multiplayer action formats and, yes, games like Monaco let players co-operate to pull off super fun heists online. But the GTA V Online world promises to be bigger than anything we've seen for this type of play and if Rockstar is diligent about constantly adding missions and content I can look past their efforts to create a constant revenue stream.
To be perfectly honest, I'm likely gonna buy some money as soon as I can. If only because I feel so cash-strapped in GTA V that I don't want to be a pauper in GTA V Online, too. And the money will go farther in GTA V Online than in the main game. Eurogamer reports that a $1 million car in GTA V will only cost about $150,000 in GTA V Online. The same goes for those ludicrously priced properties. There are no multi-million dollar listings in GTA V Online. According to Eurogamer the most expensive piece of real estate costs about $400,000. So if you decide to buy some in-game money you'll get a whole lot more out of it, which feels fair. At least Rockstar isn't going the opposite route and making the in-game currency you actually pay for worth less by making items MORE expensive.
How will fans react to the concept of buying in-game currency? It's tough to tell. The initial reaction online is obviously "WTF?" but the attitude could change once we get our hands on GTA V Online. So far, Rockstar has delivered a tremendous value with GTA V by giving players hours and hours of content in an era where AAA titles aren't afraid to put out a 10-hour campaign.
Let's hope that buying in-game currency doesn't ruin the game for everyone. I honestly don't think it will, Rockstar has shown their too smart and care too much about their product to tank a potentially groundbreaking online mode by letting people pay-to-play their way to the top. I think it'll serve as a nice headstart for eager fans with a little extra cash, but in the end we'll get an Online mode that is as perfectly balanced (and addictive) as the main game itself.