Sunday, November 17, 2013

WoW Analysis: Lesser Charms of Excessive Fortune

When Mists of Pandaria came out, one of the innovations Blizzard implemented was the concept of bonus loot by using bonus roll tokens. Initially, to acquire such tokens, players had to do a lot of dailies in order to earn Lesser Charms of Good Fortune, which could then be traded in weekly for some bonus roll tokens. However, acquiring these were a chore (on top of taking up lots of inventory space since it wasn't considered a currency until later), which resulted in numerous implementations that awarded Lesser Charms from activities such as Pet Battling and actively farming most higher level mobs (particularly rare spawns) so players had alternative methods to get Lesser Charms than doing dailies.

With 5.4 and the Timeless Isle's addition, Lesser Charms can also be acquired from various weekly chests on the island. In addition, since a lot of the Timeless Isle's activity involves killing mobs, especially rare spawns, on top of old changes such as one that reduced the weekly consumption of Lesser Charms from 90 to 50, things like this happen:
If only I could do something about these Lesser Charms...
As you can see, players are now being flooded with Lesser Charms of Good Fortune as a result of casually doing activities such as killing rares on the Timeless Isle. I have enough to last me for about a year and a half of weekly quests, which means it's unlikely I'll end up using them up since I doubt this currency will be relevant in the following expansion: Warlords of Draenor. While this isn't an issue that breaks the game or anything, it would be nice to find some additional uses for Lesser Charms. For instance, here are a couple of suggestions:
  • Allow them to be traded in for goods of some sort at a large ratio so that actively farming Lesser Charms isn't the easiest way to acquire said goods but it allows players to dump excess currency like with Justice Points, Honor Points, Valor Points, and Conquest Points.
    • Mists of Pandaria trade goods would be a good candidate but at the moment it is pretty easy to acquire an excess of such goods through all sorts of various methods (far more than any expansion to date, for sure).
  • Make the currency effectively account-bound by adding an item that can be purchased with Lesser Charms that is Bind to Account that can be used to create Lesser Charms. The trade-in ratio need not even be 1-1 but it can even be a higher ratio (like 250 Lesser Charms for an item that creates 50 Lesser Charms).
    • As you can see from the picture above, I have a ton of charms on my main but very few on my alts. I don't particularly have time to devote to the Timeless Isle for all my characters and because of Bind to Account tokens, I really don't need to.
  • Add vanity purchases or semi-vanity purchases for Lesser Charms. Much like Timeless Coins and other currencies that reach excess pretty easily, having vanity purchases, preferably repeatable consumable ones, allows players to have an option for getting rid of excess Lesser Charms. For instance, one-time costume changes, pets, battle-stones, (expensive) permanent costume changes, and other fun things similar to items like this or this.
    • It would be preferred the items are consumable, as there are so many permanent vanity items as it is and until there is a separate inventory for such items, inventory clutter is going to become more and more of an issue.
Also, I should probably mention that resolving the issue by doing something like increasing the amount of Lesser Charms needed for the weekly bonus roll tokens would cause an issue. This is because the increased requirement makes it even more time-consuming for players with alts to get their weekly tokens and barely comes to close dumping the excess amount of Lesser Charms that are around right now.

Aside from that, this isn't exactly a big deal. I just kind of wish players could do something with their excess Lesser Charms. What I'm at least hoping for is that if a similar currency system is used in Warlords of Draenor, that the aforementioned issues don't exist.

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