I, like many other people, locked myself into the Blizzard annual pass for the year of WoW with a free Diablo III download, Tyrael’s Charger mount, and the Beta Key to Mist of Pandaria that was thrown in to sweeten the deal. One night I was curious and wondered, “With all the free stuff I’m getting how much am I truly spending for the WoW service?” So I booted up my handy dandy calculator program on my laptop to find the answer.
So say for the sake for this math problem you paid the most expensive way you can, 15$ month per month for the year, bringing the highest possible cost for the annual pass to $180. With our price ceiling for the math problem, now we can start subtracting the value of the free merchandise.
First the Tryael’s Charger, or as I have called it: Sparkle Pony on Steroids. He was released to all the players when patch 4.3 went live and was given to every characters you ever created through a letter in your mailbox. Tryael’s Charger could be comparable to the other Blizzard Store mounts, so we could assume that he would cost 25$ (if he would ever be sold separately from the promotion). So that mount can be deducted that from the 180$, leaving us with 155$.
Players who signed up for the pass also receives a free download of the Diablo III day the game is available to the public. Even though Blizzard has not released a price for this game, we can assume from the Starcraft II price that it will be about sixty dollars, bring the cost from 155$ to 95$.
But that’s not all folks, for the annual pass also gives the players who signs up a free Beta key to the next expansion. (This is how I am able to cover the expansion’s build up on this blog) This one is more difficult, since there is no ‘official’ price on a beta key. So lets say the price it between 20-40$ on the black market and spilt the difference at 30$.
*The image that comes to mind when I think of Mist of Pandaria Beta Key
After subtracting the value of all the free items and services that you receive with the annual pass the difference of the price is 65$. To put that in context, the 6 month pass for WoW is 72$. That means that there are some players who are playing a year of World of Warcraft for less than half the of the value of someone who did not sign up the annual pass. So if you meet a person who disagrees with the idea of locking yourself in with one of Blizzard’s games at the price of 180$, you can direct them to this blog post and show them the math that would make the biggest penny pincher be proud of you .