Greedy Goblin

Friday, August 26, 2011

Expensive mounts and pets are moronic

Surprisingly, a previous moron of the day who spent all his 35K gold on a vanity mount, got support from readers. Of course their main point is "people have different goals" and "this is fun for him and we all play for fun".

No, I'm not going to argue that this is pure nihilism: "we can't say anything about anything as anything can be fun for anyone". I'm going to prove that he is a moron even if his goal is "fun" and "fun" is a legitimate goal.

The first point we need it is "activities can be fun, not items". You can only have fun doing something. Let's accept that any activity can be fun for someone, but only activities can be fun. This point can be easily proved: when you are sleeping, eating, or doing something that separates from the item, you are not having fun because of the item, despite the item is right there where you left it. If the item would be some source of fun, it would always produce the fun.

Of course items can be tools to have fun. For example you can't have fun in a computer game without a computer. So the "fun item" is something that is needed for some fun activity.

Let's explore then, what kind of activity can be fun with a WoW mount or pet? Since minipets don't do anything, you can only watch them. So you can claim that "it's fun watching a minipet or mount". However watching it doesn't need you to own it. You can watch someone elses pet, or watch it on youtube or watch its countless pictures around the internet. So even if watching a pet or mount is fun, owning it has very little utility: you can easily access one to watch.

However this utility is balanced against getting it. An average player makes about 500G/hour doing dailies and selling vendortrash. So buying a 10G pet/mount is probably smart if watching it is fun, as you spend only 1 minute to get the gold and in return, you can save 10-30 seconds every time you want to enjoy the pet, as it is instantly there, you don't have to Alt-tab or seek one in the city. However buying a 35000 gold pet is surely moronic. It takes 70 hours to get the gold, the utility of owning the pet will not repay this time even if you summon it 100k times.

I'd like to emphasize that as the pet does nothing at all, it cannot have any utility in any other activities than watching it. Mounts have another utility: they can carry you. However any mount can do that, and you already have one. So the extra utility of the "cool" mount is only visual, so we are back at the previous point.

Maybe the "fun" activity is showing off. The owner is impressing peers. The fact that all these mounts are carrying passengers support this idea. No, this time I don't say the obvious that impressing peers is stupid. This is moronic because you are not impressing peers. PvP-ers are impressed by ratings, raiders by bosskills, casuals by nothing (as everything is "just a game lol"). So you spend lot of gold for something that won't happen.

Maybe the fun is imagining that you are impressing peers. However imagination does not need items. You can just sit in your bed, close your eyes and imagine the people cheering you. Stupid, but hey! The point is that wasting 70 hours of grinding to imagine that is quite moronic.

  • Watching it doesn't need ownership
  • You won't impress peers
  • Imagination doesn't need it
  • It's vanity so can't do anything else


Polynices said...

I think you forgot the collector types who just want to see their total number of pets or mounts get bigger. The pet or mount doesn't have to do anything at all except exist so their number can be bigger.

Soge said...

For some people the act of grinding something (Items, gold, whatever) is fun on itself. It is a mindless, repetitive activity that you can do, and work toward some goal.

It is like saying that raiding is stupid, since you can just go online and watch Ragnaros dying, thus saving you time.

For that kind of player, the mount on itself is not "fun", and the fun actually stops once you have the mount - or is severely crippled. That also explains why new mounts and time sinks are always needed - since they only make sense up to the point you achieve them.

Cigaras said...

There is a thing called collecting, some people collect stamps, some people collect empty bottels of beer, some collect door knobs or whatever it is collectible, some people collect virtual game stuff. And it's the same, there is no fun value in having stamps, the only enjoyment is knowing that you have something that others don't have, thats all, and in my humble opinion it's better than just wandering around Ogrimar or sitting on a couch watching tv commercials. I would agree that there are better stuff to collect than virtual pets, however real life stuff cost real money, wow goods are more afordable especialy if you know how to use auction house.

P.S. sorry for my bad English.

fauxgt4 said...


While I atreentherenare a lot of people who collect for social reasons, there are some who collect just for the fun of it. Back in high school I had a game called pokemon. You "collect" little animals in a virtual world.

I probably played the game for 50+ hours after I had "beaten" it, just having fun collecting more. I never had a cool gameboy with the link up cables to trade/ show off my "collection". I certainly wasn't going to brag to anyone (even a idiotic highschooler like myself realized how retarded I would look running around with a gameboy showing my friends my "collection".)

No one ever knew about it. They didn't really enhance the gameplay since I had beaten the story line. I just liked collecting them.

So, I don't think it's fair to completely discount collecting for it's own sake as an activity, even if don't understand it. However, I do agree that quite a lot of socials use this excuse as justification for having large collections they can show off. Clearly wow is much more popular of a game than the pokemon one I used to play.

Lyxi said...

Indeed. You just glossed over the whole 'Achiever' archetype of Bartle's Gamer Psychology test.

I have a chopper. I think I used it...once until getting bored of it. Despite this, I'd still buy it. Mainly because I have the money, without even trying, and secondly because it gives 10 Achievement points. Who cares that they don't do anything, I just want them.

It is irrational, sure. But 'fun' is an irrational concept to begin with. Rationalizations break down in front of this.

Besides. I'm not hurting anyone by having a chopper. I provided work for an engineer. I'm not even hurting myself since I never farmed, yet I had enough gold to buy a chopper and consumables, and gems, and BoEs and enchants. (In fact, this expansion I spent 3 times as much gold on BoEs and enchants, as compared to the entire lifetime of pets and mounts combined.)

Rohan said...

Anna earns 35k gold. Presumably Anna has fun earning that 35k gold. Anna is not an M&S.

Betty earns 35k gold. Presumably Betty has fun earning that 35k gold. Betty spends the 35k gold on a vanity mount. Yet Betty is an M&S?

I just don't see how you can claim Anna is not M&S, yet Betty is.

Working towards a goal is a worthwhile activity. However, you have to set the goal so that you can know when you achieve it, mark it done, and move onto the next goal.

Anonymous said...

I don't have Vial of the Sands but some people in my guild do. One guy who's played since Vanilla takes me raiding at times, showing me weird places in the world. Sure I could just fly on my own mount, but for some reason it's more fun this way.

In a couple months I'll get the legendary and I fully intend to spend all day sitting in SW a as a blue dragon. Hardly impressive at that point, but do I care? Hell yes I want to show off my awesome lady dragon, and don't even massively care if other people are impressed or not.

And btw, casuals sure are impressed by mounts. There was a time when I thought _anyone_ with a mount (any mount) must be really awesome!

Mick said...

You are essentially saying that displaying vanity in general is being moronic, which in real life would mean that the industries of art, makeup, jewelry, a large portion of the clothes market, expensive cars, etc, are all moronic. I have a sneaking suspicion that to you do in fact think they are moronic. Is this the case?

Anonymous said...

@Polynices: You just proved his point.

What good is any number to anyone? There's no point in having a gazillion pets, you can only have one out at a time, and why would you have one out? I don't get people that collect stamps either, but even I will recognize the upside down plane one when I run into it (and sell it at a profit)
Same goes for money in your bank account, if you don't use it to make yourself feel good, there's no point in having it.

Anonymous said...

I think some of the mount/pet collectors just reflect how it is in real life, where there are also collectors. Stamp collectors, watch collectors, pen collectors, bottle cap collectors, rusty nails collectors etc. etc. Many collectable items have a huge RL money value. Perhaps this mindset ("some items are worth collecting and having") rubs off into the game. Blizzard is surely trying to cater to collectors in the game, with all their rare pets and mounts.

Besides, if a player is good at getting gold and is sitting on 300k easily, what else should he do with it? Is it any more fun to see a big number in the lower right corner of your bags than to be able to change into a dragon and fly?

madscorpion said...

I think you missed a deep-seated human drive there. In the words of the great Hannibal Lector, "He covets. We covet what we see every day". I'm sure we could both do a long post about the real human instincts & evolutionary theory behind that assumption but hey, it's still there.

Seeing it on youtube or beside someone else isnt as gratifying as owning one yourself. It may be stupid but the drive is there and it's much more deep-seated than a superficial need to impress anyone

Anonymous said...

Except "It's vanity so can't do anything else" isn't true in this case. This is a mount not a pet. In particular, IIRC. it is the only two-person flying mount that does not take RL$. I have two accounts. and over a million gold and may get a VotS just to be able to run lowbies - dual box or guilds - around.

Anonymous said...

I agree with most of what you post, but you're pigeonholing all collectors here.

I'm a hardcore collector of almost everything in game. I have 165+ pets and 155+ mounts, and countless vanity items. I also have almost 13,000 achievement points. I have a LARGE amount of gold (about 275k right now) with which I fund my in-game interests (raiding, pursuit of mounts/pets, vanity items, and achievement points).

Why shouldn't I spend my money (which I have fun making) on things which I have fun playing with and the challenge of acquiring?

I like having a big collection. I like summoning the mounts, looking at my character on the mounts, summoning the pets, watchimg my character interact with pets, and playing with vanity and RP items (though I'm not a roleplayer) because I genuinely enjoy it. I can easily afford to do so, but you conisder my interest "moronic". Why?

I'm a completionist and I like farming to complete my collection, as well as farming achievements to acquire as many points as possible (currently just under 13k points). You also see this as moronic.

Isn't this just how I choose to play the game vs how you do?

Anonymous said...

What if the mount offered a utility that in turn gave you fun?

For example being able to fly around with your newbie girlfriend on your back to give her a tour of Azeroth.

Or perhaps you extract fun from offering lowbies a ride and then dropping them into the sea.

Jack le maniac said...

Oooh I was waiting for this post so bad, thought it'd never come.

It's moronic from the point of view of a Goblin, who maximize utility... I personally find it a waste of money, as I have better things to buy, but you know what, it's their money, they can waste it however they want. If they want it, if it makes them happy, who cares.

I waste my money however I want. Now wasting your money is moronic if you can't afford to waste it, but if you have so much or that it doesn't matter (like in this case, it's a game, you can generate more quickly) who cares.

I mean, happiness is just hormones doing their thing. It doesn't have to be logically justified. Enjoyement is enjoyment, and if there's no consequences (there are NONE in this case, and usually none in casual collection(except collateral damage, see lower)) there's no problem.

People enjoy OWNING things. They enjoy that it's theirs. There is a basis of psychology behind it, and a quick google search gave me a good link (I searched "why people enjoy owing things" without the " " and the 2nd and 3rd result are interesting: and . Now don't lose sight. The question is: WHY DO PEOPLE ENJOY OWNING THINGS?

Not whether consumerism is dumb or not (it is). We're interested in the psychological process behind the pleasure gotten from owning things, and why the constant pursuit of owning things is moronic.

Then again, it'd still be in the views of a Goblin. I mean, they earned their cash, they can spend it however they want.

It's their problem, not yours if they're starving on the street because of their irresponsability. People need to assume their choices.

So whether consumerism and owning thing is ape subroutine, the effects of these subroutines are irrelevant and only affect the concerned individual. Therefore, since it doesn't affect society as a whole negatively, I don't see why people can't buy whatever they want with their money.

Sure, it may be counter productive for a Goblin to buy certain things the socials buy... and I do agree some costy stuff is unnecessary and only luxury... but this is an example of live and let live.

Plus if they don't raid and just collect vanity stuff, they don't need money. Now, it's troublesome if they get into heroics, but that is another matter entirely, and the kick is justified. Coming in Heroics when they can't handle it is definitly moronic.

But farming vanity items in a game? No.

Plus, Collectors, what Polynices said, 1st comment. They just enjoy partaking in every part of the game, and collecting as much stuff as possible on a single character. I liked to do that when I played WoW, to get a character as complete as possible. I still didn't buy the 16k mammoth or the Dalaran gryphons/bears. Waste of my money.

But because I see no purpose, gain no enjoyment, doesn't mean people won't.

Oh yeah, and I agree with you that alot of stuff is unecessary crap. I disagree when you say people are morons for buying them. They can spend their cash however they want.

I still don't see how buying a 35k mount in game makes someone moronic. Translate it in real life maybe, where you drag yourself to bankruptcy but not in a game.

Bancinja said...

There are expensive mounts who offer some utility. or - multipassanger ground mounts; - repair and vendor within 1.5 s, can serve as multipassanger mount as well; - multipassanger flying mount.

Anonymous said...

I did it for achievement only. By the start of Cataclysm I owned 115+ mounts and pets without buying any TCG or Blizzard shop pets/mounts. I did miss the roll on Mimiron's head and we never came back to repeat the kill, I didn't have a chance to get ZA mount in TBC and I also never seen ZG mounts drop, even though I managed to start soloing the place as a clothie.

Did I want to impress anyone? Nope. I was really bored, so I tried to get my 10K achievemnt points and have some "work" done for the next expansion. I was 50% done with "The insane" as well. But then I got completely bored, so I just quit.

By the time I've stopped playing I had 70K+ gold and various stuff worth ~10K in my personal guild bank. I'm not sure if my existence proves anything, but I believe that one can be a successful businessman and spend money on vanity stuff such as Ferrari.

Grim said...

The fun activity is getting the mount. Not the grinding part, just getting it. Right clicking it and watching it get added to other mounts. Then clicking on it and watching the progress bar as it gets mounted. That does infinite fun units per second.

Also the achievement popping up. That does like five times infinite fun units.

No you can't watch it on youtube, that's a different activity which is not fun at all.


Now stop trying to prove that wanting something is moronic. Morons are distinguished by how they go about trying to get what they want in horribly inefficient ways. Often they then claim that they are just "having fun" and don't actually want anything.

Don't confuse the "I'm just wiping in this dungeon for fun, because its just a game" moron with a guy who claims "I wanted this mount. I bought it. Here it is, because I wanted it." One of them is clearly lying (perhaps to himself), the other might not be sure why he wanted something, but he bloody well got it.

Marinus said...

I think you are missing one crucial point (or infact doing this deliberate)

The visual aspect of your character adds to the fun, I find it more fun to play a good looking game then the same game with really outdated graphics.
Thats why we have a thriving video card industry....
Sometimes looks get in the way, and you compromise (to low framerate), but I think most of the players, actually try to get the maximum visual enjoyement out of the game.

Why do people rather play a frost mage then a fire mage, even if the abilities would be 100% the same. Use a crossbow or a gun, with exacly the same stats.

If you agree that the looks of you avatar add to the fun during the playsession, mounts/pets/vanity items all add to the fun.

Watching is not controlling/playing, I know some people like to watch other play PC games, but i'm not one of those.

So controlling the nice visual looking avater gives me fun...
and riding a harley, with a dwarf hunter, with a big nasty gun strapped to its back is neat....
all the while being chased by a small bomb pet....

is more fun then, sitting on a flying carpet, with a flowery-crossbow being chased by a parrot...
although I can imagine that being fun for other people...;)

Pheredhel said...

Essentially, what Gevlon says is: "if it has no utility, paying for it is moronic"... What again is the utility of playing WoW ? or any Game at all? oh right... fun and recreation...

So by any definition anything that provides fun to someone in wow has a utility. Now, how can obtaining such a Dragon be fun?
Well, it's not about the dragon itself, it is about the process of getting it. He got a reward for what he did. How he did get the money is another story, but he wants that dragon as his reward. As it is a game, rewards are arbitrary anyway.

An example: why wipe on bosses over and over again? According to your logic, the only reward they give is the loot, wich is in itself completely useless as the only utility it provides is making other bosses easier/feasible. An the only advantage of that is that you can get more/better gear...
Yes I'd say with that point of view raiding is really the most moronic thing to do: you raid to get gear to get gear to... and it has no other utility than perpetually getting gear...
On the other hand, the dragon is a "one shot" and he can now try to do other things.

The only way the "dragon guy" might be moronic is the way he got that money/the mats... And no "he could have gotten more first" is not an argument, cause as you said yourself "you earn enough money rl, you could get more but you don't want to/need to" ... in that case, this would be moronic aswell.

Clockw0rk said...

To use a comment from the thread that started this "What if he likes licking windows?". What if he does? If Stephen Hawking or Steve Jobs confessed that they love licking windows it would not change the fact that they are extremely productive and intelligent people, they just have a strange quirk.

A lot of assumptions are being made about this particular player. Was he missing enchants/gems? Maybe he has several alts and is entirely self sufficient just from his regular play thus has no real need to use the AH or gold for anything.

So I went and Armory'ed him, and assuming this is the correct individual:

He is missing some enchants and gems and his only activity appears to be a 2v2 team (he has only the first step of the "PuG" achievement so I will assume he does not do randoms often, in fact he's only completed 3 heroics and his Arena rating is very low) by the general M&S description I get from Gevlon he would qualify and some of that 35-37k should be spent rounding out his gear (and will avoid going into discussion about what is/isn't an M&S and so on).

Weighing ONLY the act of "An individual spending all of their gold at a given time to get a mount," hardly constitutes an M&S in a game where having 0 gold is not necessarily a detriment...nothing thus stops a person from going out and getting more gold through a variety of means.

"Activities can be fun, not items" I challenge this assumption with the following;

"You can only have fun doing something.." Yes in a sense, but say someone has a signed baseball that they never play with or intend to sell (and wouldn't even if they should, the baseball as an investment is not relevant to this) but possessing it makes them feel good when they think about it, about perhaps the day they got it signed or merely the fact that it is unique or semi-unique. Yes, technically “thinking about” an item is “doing something” but it is doing something as a direct result of possessing a specific item; for an individual what items constitute “that” is completely up in the air. The analogy could be made of how much more fun it is to drive an expensive, powerful car as compared to a stock, economy model. Except in this case the expensive car is the Drake and the Gryphon or whatever mount he had in its place is the economy model and to him flying around on that drake and being able to carry a person or simply fantasize that he is a dragon is that “fun” aspect and in his eyes it is worth the 35k or however much in game-gold.

"..when you are sleeping, eating, or doing something that separates from the item, you are not having fun because of the item, despite the item is right there where you left it." This is the same for activities; the activity in itself might be fun, but any time I am not performing it then it is not producing fun. However when one interacts with the item or performs the activity they can have fun.

"If the item would be some source of fun, it would always produce the fun." Once more the same could be said of activities; an activity might always be a source of fun when it is performed (though I would argue that with many games the 'fun' fades over time) but when it is not being performed....the computer is still there, the baseball bat is still there, the field is still there and one could be doing activities they find fun and yet at that moment when they are not being performed they are not generating any "fun" (writing this line also brings to mind that all activities require some tool to be performed, even if that tool is empty space or free time, but I won't go there).

Trying to distill "fun" into some sort of logical equation is eventually going to fail as human emotion rarely follows logic and there is little uniformity...what pleases one person might be redundant to another.

Gevlon said...

@Jack: the hormones of X gives him fun when having sex with children. So it's OK, right? If someones hormones give enough fun for having a useless pixel dragon, to spend 70 hours of his real life doing repetitive tasks, he probably need expert help and not support from you.

Anonymous said...

You are wrong in my opinion in the aspect that casuals are not impressed by anything. I'd say the opposite. They are impressed by anything. It's "cool" to be "pwn" in arenas or kill many bosses. Or have a pretty recoloured gryphon etc. The difference w "cba lol" and "wooow cool!" is the mislabeled respect. People they like are cool for their so called cool stuff but people they don't like (like you, me, the RL who turns them down) are no lifers, no fun bla bla etc.


Ephemeron said...

This is moronic because you are not impressing peers. PvP-ers are impressed by ratings, raiders by bosskills, casuals by nothing (as everything is "just a game lol").

I'd say that it's actually the other way around.

PvP-ers and raiders are way too obsessed with their own egos and status jockeying to be impressed by accomplishments of others (since "it's NOT just a game, it's SERIOUS BUSINESS ARRRGH"). Look at any world/region first or Arena statistics thread at MMO-Champion or official forums and you'll see that the vast majority of comments are full of venomous insults and attempts to denigrate the achievements of those on the top. A high PvP rating is a mark of "MMR-exploting win-trading FotM faceroller"; a hardmode endboss kill merely indicates a "no-life virginal basement dweller who obviously gets paid to play". Admitting genuine respect is rare, as it implies your inferiority and leads to loss of face.

Casuals, on other hand, can afford to be easily impressed ("Oh my G-d, that guy just turned into a DRAGON! That's SO awesome! I wish I could turn into a dragon, too!").

Pheredhel said...

Let's analyze the Raiding point with the last four points in the Post:

Watching it doesn't need ownership
Same here for bosskills/gear

Imagination doesn't need it
As Imagination doesn't need anything, this is true for everything... so a rather useless observation.

It's vanity so can't do anything else
The only thing gear can to is to get other gear, so it is perpetual and costs more time than just obtaining the "vanity dragon". So it's utility can be considered negative.
On the other hand: it's one of the few multi-passenger flying mounts... so it may have some utility.

You won't impress peers
This one may actually be true. but then, I guess you can impress peers with the dragon. It's not that common, you can take people with you, ...
By Raiding, you won't impress many people anymore. Wotlk destroyed that, as well as the fact, that everyone can have at least 3/5 of the tiersets. The only exception ingame is Fandrals "firecat staff".
But even then: you need to inspect someone to see if he did heroic mode.

In conclusion: The dragon has the same utility as raiding.

PS: you can do that for pretty much every single activity/item/enchant/whatever in wow... as such, the blogpost contains no valid argument why obtaining a drake is moronic.

Pheredhel said...

The only reason why " the hormones of X gives him fun when having sex with children. So it's OK, right?" is not ok, is, cause it harms the child.
With a few exceptions all all criminal laws work the way of "it does reduce the fun for someone else".

So, your comparison doesn't hold.

Based on your logic, it should be illegal to spend money on Art, Movies,Books... and the like unless they provide education or some other form of utitlity besides beeing fun.

Right now you try to push your ideas of "fun" and utility on everyone and label whoever does not agree a moron.

Small hint: that did never work out through history, maybe learn from...

Azuriel said...

@Jack: the hormones of X gives him fun when having sex with children. So it's OK, right? If someones hormones give enough fun for having a useless pixel dragon, to spend 70 hours of his real life doing repetitive tasks, he probably need expert help and not support from you.

We can arbitrarily say having sex with children is bad, because we believe it disrupts the society we wish to live in. Nevermind how it was perfectly fine 400 years ago and was generally the only way the species survived when life expectancy was < 30 years.

As for the other, a huge majority of humanity spends at least 40 hours of their real lives a week doing repetitive tasks (e.g. jobs). Most of us don't like what we do, but we do it anyway. If this guy enjoys doing repetitive tasks and we don't, but both of us do it anyway, who is the real moron in this scenario? The guy who enjoys it, or the one that doesn't?

P.S. Why create the guild, do raiding content when you could Youtube/imagine a successful experiment in your mind?

P.P.S. "It's the journey, not the destination," "arbitrary goals are the only reason why the endgame exists," and so on and so forth.

Anonymous said...

for me camping a mount is like meditation. a stepback from active gameplay in general and when i loot the desired mount i loose interrest in playing for some time..... there for its good for my real life not wasting to much time for progression and boring honour point or whatever grind.

after 6 years this game feels like a heavy stone on my back and while i camp i do other stuff like reading and spending time with myx gameplay needs my full attention ingame.

SO for me its like moving away from a shitty game which fills me with joy.

after 6 years i saw all ups and downs in this game including beeing maintank in a servrfirstkill guild and raiding as dd top100 eu.

got more gold then i could spent so having wow in the background reading the internets chatting with guild mates while just doing nothing but waiting for a mount gives me a massive ammount off fun.

This games is just to old to invest more energys...cant wait for gw2 to finnaly move on gamewise*

Dàchéng said...

Gevlon stated:

"If someones hormones give enough fun for having a useless pixel dragon, to spend 70 hours of his real life doing repetitive tasks, he probably need expert help and not support from you. "

Surely that applies to every activity in a computer game? If someone's hormones give enough fun for killing a useless pixel "boss" to spend any number of hours of real life pressing buttons like a rat in a lab, he probably need expert help. Or do you think that the fun you have in raiding is any different?

Anonymous said...

as for the collecting part....billionairs like to collect expensive art and shitloads of old rare cars.... they could spend their money better... from the view of a person that nearly never come even close to that amount of money.

But why they buy then all that useless stuff? Because they can.

Anonymous said...

"Fun" is an arbitrary concept that's specific to an individual.

I'm sure many non-gamers would argue Gevlon is M&S for spending anytime in a game regardless of what he's doing. For example, he could be playing the AH game for real money on E-Bay or the stock markets.

So there we have it, using his own defintion then according to the majority of the worlds population (gamers representing a minority of the 7bill proplr on the planet) Gevlon is M&S.

Anonymous said...

"If someones hormones give enough fun for having a useless pixel dragon, to spend 70 hours of his real life doing repetitive tasks, he probably need expert help and not support from you."

Gevlon, no matter how hard you try, you will never be able to rationalize fun. What somebody feels is fun is completely subjective. I don't find playing sports to be particularly enjoyable, but many other people certainly do, just like those sports players probably find our video game playing tedious and uninteresting.

You mention tedious tasks, my mother loves to knit and sew, which is a pretty repetitive activity if you ask me, but she loves it, not out of some compulsion to grind out her next scarf to show off to all her friends, but because its relaxing and she can give them as gifts to people.

You can't use utility as a fair measure of fun because fun inherently does not require utility, it requires novelty. A utilitarian act can be fun, but the opposite is not necessary.

Anonymous said...

(The act of) getting the mount or other vanity item can be rewarding. The feeling of having almost perfect collection is good. Working hard to get closer to perfect one also feels good. Very much so for collector types, even if they are not even going to use the mount, or if the method of acquisition is just handing out some gold. You are assuming they get their satisfaction from looking at the mount.

I do agree that if your goal is to impress peers, you are a moron because you are too stupid to realise that that's not going to happen. If you have other goals than just collecting mounts, I agree it is stupid to spend all your gold buying an expensive mount if you end up completely broke.

However, I most definitely don't agree that mount collectors or other perfectionist type players are morons. They get their satisfaction from getting closer to "perfect collection". In my eyes the mentality is the same as getting satisfaction from playing well if your goal is to "play perfect".

In addition, it is possible to have enough gold for buying the mounts (and other vanity items) without working any extra. I like to play WoW and I get a lot of gold for just playing the way I otherwise would (I haven't set up any proper industries, although maximising my gold/h is a priority for me): I have spent some 400k gold on vanity items already, but I still have enough gold to put best possible enchants on blue items and buy all BoE items I want (even for alts). Since I don't actually work to get gold for mounts and I have no other uses for the gold (it doesn't have much value for me), I think buying the mounts would be a good idea even if I got my satisfaction from looking at them (I don't, I actually use flight form and generic ground mounts).

chewy said...

You could save money and watch the raid videos on YouTube. You don't have to go there and play. You could argue that by going there you're doing something but the fact is that your activity of killing the boss is the same activity of someone grinding for a mount. In your case, the loot is a piece of gear. In his, it's the mount.

And, by the way, mounts are in game and cannot be compared to pedophilia.

Chowderman said...

The only moronic thing is the fact you need to devote a post to it. It's their time, it's their gold, it's your profit of their being a moron if you are the one crafting these types of items from them.

Beyond that, who the hell cares. If you have crap to sell and 1 million pieces of crap, just recruit yourself 1 million morons, idiots and jackasses to buy your crap...and there you go Millionaire.

If you are going to use tools to get rich, don't complain when the tools are getting the job done.

Now to point out the fact one spends 35k gold on a vanity item. Well, I have multiple toons, covering all professions, I make everything I need. WoW bank doesn't accrue interest so that just means it is sitting there, being useless. Sure I can buy and sell in the AH, but I already do that the products I make from my professions. So...I still only have 35k gold, hell I'll buy the mount. My Volcanic Deck will sell within the week and I will have gold again....

Spending your gold doesnt make one a moron, I think letting it sit in a non-interest bearing 'account' is, may as well use it.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I can't believe how many people have missed the mark on why buying a 35k mount is moronic but I guess it isn't entirely surprising when you ignore previous posts by Gevlon and think of each post within itself.

I recall a while ago Gevlon started looking at how much gold players across a server would have (now this was during WotLK). Most players did not have over 2,000 gold. Players with great swaths of disposable income are rare.

It's not the people that can quickly and easily earn gold that are morons for buying such things. They can easily afford it and in fact are the people targeted by Blizzard to purchase these items.

WoW may be a game but it draws a pretty good correlation with real life. There are objects that are reasonably available only to people who have the skills to easily make money. A Ferrari 458 Italia is going to fetch $150,000 USD at the low end. Who do you see driving them? The wealthy. You don't see some guy who works for $10/hr owning one of these.

Yes, many of the costs of real life aren't apparent in WoW, but there are other costs out there which provide a greater benefit to such a player than a mount. BoE epics, gems, enchantments, and other item mods just to start that list. And the person grinding 500g/hr to get that 35k mount is probably neglecting each and every one of those things.

Gwhorn said...

What about the RP side of it ? I like to see my main character like a hero in a story, who discover things, get better, earn a new sword, travel the world with X or X mount for a while etc. So I can seek rare mounts for this reason. the RP-looking. But I doubt the morons are thinking that way...

Michael said...

Hi Gevlon!

Why do you care about making gold, or acting in such a manner that you get more gold? Your gold doesn't contribute materially to your happiness. You can't turn it into groceries or pay rent with it. Sure, some people might look at how much gold you have and applaud, but who cares about popular acclaim? The difference that gold has on your raid performance is tiny compared to the difference becoming more skilled will have. Sure, some guilds do raid loot using gold, but most of them don't. You could join a guild that doesn't and not having gold wouldn't at all affect how well geared you could become, or what content you can see.

It seems like your gold is almost entirely useless. So why bother spending time thinking about it?

Explain to me why adding a number to my mount total is worth less than adding a number to my gold total.

Anonymous said...

Let's explore then, what kind of activity can be fun with a WoW mount or pet? Since minipets don't do anything, you can only watch them. So you can claim that "it's fun watching a minipet or mount".

A friend recently started this game. His second mount purchase on level 40 gnome was the Chopper (he farmed the AH for it. He even limited himself to selling self crafted engineering items to support his characters story (I myself would not go that far). He got this mount in the first two days he started playing though.

The Standing Dragon said...

All my life, I've wanted a motorcycle. It's not an expensive thing - it's just something that I irrationally (as I've never ridden one) fell in love with as a younger man, and something that I will one day own, learn to use, and enjoy.

There's no point in it. It can't take me to work any "better" than my existing car - in fact, riding it to work is more dangerous than driving my existing vehicle. It gets better gas mileage, sure, but 10MPG more is insufficient to justify owning something dangerous that has problems in the rain. It even incurs additional costs: insurance, maintenance, likely some kind of payment (though I'm trying to avoid interest) - anyway, you get the idea. It's a supremely impractical decision. Yet, I'm going to buy one one day. Why? Because I want to.

Gev, you have a bad habit of making three assumptions that absolutely shoot every one of this sort of argument in the foot. Specifically:

1) Raiding is a worthwhile activity, somehow having value.
2) People who cannot or will not raid (or the PvP equivalent) are somehow 'defective'.
3) People who concentrate on anything other than performance are foolish.

I absolutely agree with you that people who willfully decide to go raiding (or even do heroics) without bothering to concentrate on the best level of performance they can attain are, in fact, Morons and Slackers of the definition you describe. You don't seem to be vicious to newbies or the inexperienced - just the willfully ignorant. Good! Willful ignorance is stupid. This stance is also "social", not "goblinish." After all, if you're participating in an activity involving others that requires a certain level of performance, you are violating a social contract in not living up to that performance level when you could.

Get it? You're annoyed with people who blow off heroics for the same reason people are annoyed with idiots who run red lights. There's a violation of a social contract that impinges on the enjoyment (and/or safety!) of everyone else.

However, just like me with my motorcycle, this guy and his mount don't affect you in any way, shape, form, or function. You pronounce judgement because he doesn't fit your social value set.

If he is a raider, then given his current state of gear, he's a moron for going for the dragon ... as he'd be leaving the rest of his raid to carry him, violating the social contract. In this sense, you're dead on. However, this guy isn't a raider, and judging him as though he were is a failure in logic.

The mere act of buying a mount doesn't make him a moron, anymore than me buying a motorcyle makes me a moron. It just is what it is - something he did for his own reasons.

What I find amazing about the whole thing is that, for a fellow who claims to be 'asocial', you're just as social as anyone else. You just build your society a different way.. but you still look at the "other" (that is, people who don't share the same values you do) as destructive, even when they're not. Like the Objectivists or the Scientologists, you've taken this idea of performance and raiding as the "one true way", and anyone who plays for any other reason is now a moron.

"Us" vs. "Them" is the classic social divide - building up "us" at the expense of "them" is how we justify any number of idiocies. Good on you for being social enough to continue the tradition.

zahorijs said...

The person, who you described, probably is a moron. But that doesn't mean, that everyone, who buys this mount, is a moron, even tho imho more then half probably are stupid.

So, your statement is hurtful for those of us, who, even tho being able to get 5k/hour and perfom good enough to kill some HC encounters, are still socials. And hurtful it is, because you yourself are a peer for some of us.

You frequently try to prove, that social way is a way of mistakes and failures. But, at the same time, because of being asocial you are not able to emulate what being social really means in the sense of non-material things like emotions and feelings. And maybe this social structure of our society is what makes us(socials) tick and in your perfect world of asociality we won't see the reason to exist at all. But that is philosophical question and imho nobody is able to have definetlive proove of right or wrong on this matter.

So please, be more gentle ir your approximations or prove, that you have the right to approximate at the level at which you did.a moron. But that doesn't mean, that everyone, who buys this mount, is a moron, even tho imho more then half probably are stupid.

So, your statement is hurtful for those of us, who, even tho being able to get 5k/hour and perfom good enough to kill some HC encounters, are still socials. And hurtful it is, because you yourself are a peer for some of us.

You frequently try to prove, that social way is a way of mistakes and failures. But, at the same time, because of being asocial you are not able to emulate what being social really means in the sense of non-material things like emotions and feelings. And maybe this social structure of our society is what makes us(socials) tick and in your perfect world of asociality we won't see the reason to exist at all. But that is philosophical question and imho nobody is able to have definetlive proove of right or wrong on this matter.

So please, be more gentle ir your approximations or prove, that you have the right to approximate at the level at which you did.

Anonymous said...

But somebody who buys a really expensive pet does have their own set of peers: people who like really expensive pets. Those people might be impressed.

SirFWALGMan said...

So at some point you would actually agree that buying a mount is a good idea.. say if I made 5k an hour and it only took me 7 hours to get a pet or mount...

What is the point of being a rich goblin if all you do is sit on your gold? If I have a million gold and buy a 35k pet what does it matter? The 35k is nothing to me and the million would be hard to spend.

I personally like buying pets and mounts. I spent 40k on the Vial of Sands. I enjoy the achievements and also summoning a new mount/pet by clicking a button instead of riding the same griffon all the time. I normally would not spend 35k on a pet or mount.. especially if it was all the money I had ever earned in Warcraft.. but that is just me. Different people like different things.

Anonymous said...

"Yes, many of the costs of real life aren't apparent in WoW, but there are other costs out there which provide a greater benefit to such a player than a mount. BoE epics, gems, enchantments, and other item mods just to start that list. And the person grinding 500g/hr to get that 35k mount is probably neglecting each and every one of those things. "

Not always some players like myself have all hat covered by alts so I dont have to spen money on enchants or gems I have a really good friend that gives me all the glyphs I need plus I have pots/flask covered on another alt.

So even if I just do dailies on 4 85 toons I have way more gold coming in that going out so mounts/pet for a decent price might get looked at or I'll just go farm them myself if I think the price is to high

Anonymous said...

So is it like its okay for Bill Gates to own a Ferarri but not Joe the Plumber?

Jon said...

I'll have to agree with the commenter who said what's the point of having so much gold if you're just going to be looking at a number. I have over 300,000 gold and haven't bought VotS yet, but am considering it. Simply because I have nothing better to do with my gold than look at a six digit number. Is giving a friend a ride on a dragon any less meaningful than staring at a six digit number in the corner of my screen? Gelvon, you are usually right on par, but this time you seem to have missed the mark.

Anonymous said...

@ mick those industries are moronic though. they rely heavily on marketing to sell otherwise people aren't interested. Note though that the people doing the selling aren't the morons the ones who pay especially at high prices are the morons.

Also I believe this is one of those times where gevlon seems to think wow is more like real life then it is. In real life spending spending all your savings at once is incredibly stupid, and thus his argument is spending all your money in wow at once is just as stupid as you can just look up mounts or whatever.

However whether he is a moron depends on several factors. How long it took him to save up, could he have used the money to make more money, is he a collector, will he make use of the mounts passenger seat, does he raid. he could easily just be some one who wanted the mount because he liked the look of it, he wanted it so he bought it.

Gevlon You seem to take a minimalist approach to wow, thinking one character is enough hence he why the alt rule keeps changing, doesn't buy vanity items,etc. Do you also take a minimalist approach to real life too?

Jack le Maniac said...

@ Gevlon "It's fine in your logic if it makes someone happy to have sex with kids" You forgot an important part of what I said:

"Enjoyement is enjoyment, and if there's no consequences (there are NONE in this case, and usually none in casual collection(except collateral damage, see lower)) there's no problem."

No, it's not fine, it's pedophilia. That is a mental illness where they need help, a deviation of their brain, not normal moronic stuff.

Mental Illnesses does not make one moronic. It's not even a moronic goal. It's a SOCIALLY UNACCEPTABLE GOAL. Socially Unacceptable =/= Moronic.

The Goblin's View of Thinking is a bunch of methods and tactics to be as efficient as possible in order to reach your goals. It teaches you to maximum gain while minimizing loss.

Moronic Behaviours are behaviours that prevent you from reaching these goals. Slackers are those who want the goals without the work needed to get there. M&S are the blend of the two.

These are great methods for a great work life, that has taught me much in work ethic, and also taught me to focus on my work.

But goals vary.

"If someones hormones give enough fun for having a useless pixel dragon, to spend 70 hours of his real life doing repetitive tasks, he probably need expert help and not support from you."

You assume without proof he spent 70 hours farming. And even if he did spend his time farming... Is there really moronic ways to spend your leasure time? If you spend all of your time, doing nothing, that makes you a slacker.

But you know, how someone spends his time in a game... does it really makes you a moron? Collecting is a meta-game, anyway.

Why would it be moronic to buy something you want?
People with only high school or less wants cars, they grind at McDonalds, do extra hours, get a 2nd job and get their car. Nothing wrong with it. They earned it. He earned his dragon. Sure, he could use another mount, like the gryphon. The McDonalds guy could take the bus. But it's not what they want.

Like I said a couple days ago, I can't speak for anyone else, but it doesn't seem to me there's any reason we're getting dumped into the world. But once you're there, you better give it everything you've got. If the goal is to be happy, I don't see why it makes someone moronic to want something, work as much as he needs to work, be it 300 or 70 hours, and get it.

I did my fair shair of grind when I played WoW. I enjoyed doing it. I grinded the Shatari Skyguard, I grinded Netherwing. I got to see some lore, I got to play the game, I had fun. Sure, the results were trivial, but back then my goal was to make a character as complete as possible, who saw and got everything the game has to offer.

I enjoyed playing the game and grinded in an efficient manner.
It affected no one else, and I fully assume what I did.

That is all that matters. How people spend their time is none of your business. When people are slackers (who want stuff, say publicly they deserve it without work) or are morons (bang their head against the wall, using methods proven counter-productive) then there, call them on it.

csdx said...

@Anonymous 14:03
"Yes, many of the costs of real life aren't apparent in WoW, but there are other costs out there which provide a greater benefit to such a player than a mount. BoE epics, gems, enchantments, and other item mods just to start that list..."

This assumes that he's looking to get utility for (current tier) raiding.

Now in real life this is a legitimate concern because you can misspend money that otherwise would need to be used for your basic necessities. But in WoW, there is no cost for such, your toon doesn't need a house, or to eat or poop. So all gold you get is disposable income, meaning it can be spent on whatever gives you the most happiness by whatever arbitrary standards you have.

csdx said...

So is it like its okay for Bill Gates to own a Ferarri but not Joe the Plumber?

What's OK to do (in a moral sense) doesn't really matter, but what's smart to do in each case is based on the idea of marginal utility.

If we assume that Joe has many wants to make himself happy (a big house, a fast car, booze, whatever). Then he should distribute his wealth to make himself as happy as possible. Now part of this calculation is usually that more expensive things have diminishing returns. So just having a car (even a crappy one) gives the most utility, then less and less for expensive cars. Now given that Joe has more wants than just cars, it makes more sense to distribute his wealth among more categories. So even if he could afford a Ferrari, he's better off getting a less fancy sports car, and then using the rest of the money to buy a house or throw parties. Bill on the other hand has enough money to buy the car and spend lavishly on all other categories as well.

So unless Joe is some crazy Ferari fanatic that's his only goal in life, then he's better not getting it. But in WoW it's much easier to be such a fanatic, you could just want to collect minipets, or be obsessed with killing the bosses and getting the epics.

Anonymous said...

You seem to miss something rather obvious here, so let me explain it.

Sometimes people do things for themselves because they simply want to.

I recently got the 100 mounts and 100 pets achievements.

I'm a married man with a good life. I raid and do dailies. I maintain at least 100k gold on my main. I didn't impress anyone with my achievement, i did it as a personal goal and that's it. It doesn't mark me as a moron, nor clueless, it just shows that i did something I want. Now, I may be a moron in YOUR eyes, but the fact is all that does is reduce YOU to the judgemental masses who like to judge people on dps, ilevel, on - shit - ANYTHING AT ALL.

Don't be so quick to judge. Not everyone has the same aims.

Lothildin said...

Its not moronic. Its just delusional.
People THINK that other people is impressed by having a vanity pet that cost 35k.

And, yes, people really think that.

Or else, no one would pay real money for a Vanity Mount that is nothing else than a poorly done repagination of a lame Alliance Hippogriph.

Deepcut said...

I can make 20-30k per day. How is spending 35k on something I want moronic (just playing the devils advocate, I'm not a pet/mount collector)?

Steel said...

So Gevlon, we must force the people to not be M&S, don't we? ( You need to stop trying to engineer/envision/judge the world in your image. True freedom lies in concepts like "I disagree with what you have to say, but I will defend your right to say it", and "freedom is doing what you want, as long as you are not leeching my raid..."

Whether posession / activity or whatever is fun or moronic is irrelevant. It's also incorrect to say that (I at least) gave "support" to your 35k moron. I am totally neutral towards him, and don't pass judgement (and couldn't care less). I'm saying you should not be passing judgements in this case.

Anonymous said...

Trying to define fun is impossible. It varies for each and everyone of us.

Pedophilia is another matter entirely, with consequences to another human.

So is Wasting your money in real life.

But this is a game: Gold is a renewable, disposable resource. You can waste it and do some more instantly.

There is nothing dumb in buying whatever you want in a game.

Is he a moron for reaching his goal like this? You say his goal is the amusement he will get to use it... Nah. His goal is to own one, and whatever he does with it after doesn't matter. How is wanting to own something making you a moron? Wanting a Ferrarri makes you a moron? Wanting to have a raid progression guild (like the Pug) makes you a moron too, it's time wasted to prove a point to people who don't care.


Trying to define fun is just impossible, and a task impossible for you. People can argue your way of doing things isn't fun, people can find raids not fun... He might not have objective utility in his mount. But who cares. It just is fun. It just is. No more explanation

SO yeah

Brent said...

Just because someone does something you dont agree with doesnt make them a moron. Your premise is based on the fact that you dont see the point in it. They obviously do as they made the purchase. It really doesnt matter what you think as they are happy about the purchase. You are trying to rationalize it and cant. I dont see an issue but you think they must be a moron as you dont see rational behind it.

Ever fall in love.....not always logic in play there. Not everything in life is logical.

You also assume they earned the gold themselves. Maybe, just maybe....someone gave them the gold. I have bought 3 vial of the sands for prices ranging from 26k-42. I have given two of them away. Yes 26k is correct.....dont know why the person sold it for that price but who cares. Gold is easy to make in this game. I have no need for gold but I still enjoy playing the ah. I am well over 2million gold. There is absolutely no use in this amount of gold other than the fact that I collect it. I see no issue with someone spending all there gold. It doesnt take much to make your gold back.

You seem to prefer to focus on the negative. It may help you personally to look on the positive side of life. You may see a different view of why people do things. It is just too easy to pick everyone apart. You may have your own faults as well.....

Brett said...

People don't value things the same. This is good, beacuse without it we'd have no economy. If everyone valued things the same, nobody would trade good X for good Y or service Z, because one party would always see themselves as losing out. But since people value things differently, instead a transaction can be made because both parties see themselves as coming out ahead.

Likewise, you value your pixels of gold, but not the difference between watching a youtube of the mount versus flying the mount. Subject of today's post has the opposite value. Thus you are able to conduct a transaction, his pixel gold for being able to make his own youtube video of flying around that you can later watch.

Hey someone has to value the experience enough to get the item. After all then there wouldn't be anyone to make a youtube video of it, so you'd be forced to buy it for yourself.

Anonymous said...

You, me, and this guy are all going to quit playing WoW eventually. It's not going to run forever.

This guy spent gold on his own enjoyment. Isn't that what we're all playing for here? Enjoyment? A Ferrari can also take you to the grocery store for milk and bread if that's what you want it to do, but people don't pay all the money for that purpose, even though that's the kind of thing a car typically does.

If you're going to spout off economic theory at length, you need to realize why people continue to work after they've made enough wages to survive: because they can indulge in excessive expenses to seek satisfaction. Almost nobody really needs a Ferrari.

Anonymous said...

Isn't it somewhat moronic to even be bothered by this, to think about it, to make blog posts about it?

If some other player pays 35k for a mount in WoW, how does that effect your game time or anything else for that matter?

Also: the people that want to impress other players, are impressing other players that want to impress other players with their mounts, gear or pets. If you know what I mean?
It goes in a circle.

Eaten by a Grue said...

All you guys arguing with gevlon are missing an aspect of his point. He did not assert that the subject is a moron because he is buying the dragon form mount. He asserts the subject is a moron because he is spending his last gold to do so, to the point of not even being able to pay someone to create the mount.

It is sort of like buying a porsche but having no money left for gas.

Anyway, I do not exactly agree with gevlon on this because this is all play money, and there are no real expenses in WoW that would make you say, lose your character to hunger, so I do not think the guy is being a moron.

But you guys ought to at least address the correct point. I do not think Gevlon would call a person a moron for buying the mount and having 10k left over.

tweell said...

I have one. It's great advertising, I've made quite a bit on these mounts. For a while, I was getting a sale every time I sat in dragon form in SW. Cha-ching!

Dàchéng said...

Eaten by a grue, just look at the title of the post.

Anonymous said...

@ eaten by a grue

Your point has been addressed many times before, maybe read the comments thoroughly. Like you said, it's play money. A renewable resource, easily farmable, that when sitting around, is useless. It's meant to be spent on whatever you want. Some want gems / raiding stuff and some want mounts/pets.

Unlike real life money, you can spend it all with no consequences.
It doesn't make him a moron to do so in game.

If he did that IRL it would, but you see, this is irrelevant to the matter at hand.

Anonymous said...

maybe the ACT of collecting or gaining the pet/mount is fun.

The item is a byproduct of the fun. Just as bosskills are the byproduct of the fun of raiding. etc etc

Anonymous said...

@ eaten by a grue...

Gevlon's previous post attacked the guy for spending all his money on the mount.

This one argued that, "The point is that wasting 70 hours of grinding to imagine that is quite moronic."

In other words, Gevlon's now saying that it's not just bad that he spent his last gold on it; it's bad that he bought it at all.

Anonymous said...

There are single player games with similar 'vanity' items. Even in these games, where there is no peer group, some players spend a great deal of time accumulating such items. Gevlon's post lacks an explanatory mechanism for such players.

Dzonatan said...

I think you went over your head with this one Gevlon. Everything can be denied on start simply by one of the collectors saying:

"my fun activity is collecting and admiring my mounts/pets/tabards and finding fellow like-minded people who do they same. We create an akward but niche society of our own. We do not want any trouble to call each other morons so lets stay aside from each other ways".

And that's it. No thesis, no formulas, no higher logic needed for this.

Yes... this may sound wierd for some people, especially those who would prefer to spend money on something else. Going back to the example of that guy who wanted to buy that vial of sands. If he would moan that he wanted more then you would have a point Gevlon... but not that buying a "moronic" mount is stupid but simply for tunnel vision without perspective and bad choice of his/her/that.

I think you should stick to pragmatic competetive things Gevlon, where there is a goal and non specified means and you show why your means are effective and best way to achieve it.