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Pok√©mon UNITE’s new costumes cost over $60AUD each

Free-to-start games and MOBAs in particular are no stranger to aggressive monetisation, but this really takes the cake.

A new event has just started in Pok√©mon UNITE, featuring Halloween-themed game modes and plenty of spooky quests to complete. As usual with these kinds of events in live service games, there’s also a bunch of cosmetics included with the update. Some of these are reasonably priced, and can even be bought with currencies earned in-game. Two, however, are attracting attention for all the wrong reasons.

Two sets of “Holowear”, which is what the game calls costumes for your Pok√©mon, cost 2499 Aeos Gems each, a currency that can only be purchased with real money (although there are ways to earn very small amounts of it in-game). And how much does that come out to in real money? A staggering $60 AUD. That’s right, not $6 or $16, sixty whole dollarydoos. For a single piece of cosmetic clothing that can only be used on one Pok√©mon, and which has absolutely no bearing on gameplay whatsoever. The worst of it is that one of these costumes, Costume Party Lucario, is only available for a limited time, becoming unavailable for purchase once the Halloween event is over.

Look, far be it from us to tell you how to spend your money ‚ÄĒ I’ve spent more money on way dumber things in the past ‚ÄĒ but good grief, please at least consider if this is even remotely worth it before you break out the credit card and splash that cash. This kind of aggressive, overt monetisation tends to prey on players, particularly those that have mental illnesses and those with a predisposition to developing addiction, and offering it only for a limited time invokes a FOMO that only serves to worsen the problem. Buying these Holowear costumes is telling TiMi Studio (the game’s developer) and The Pok√©mon Company that these kinds of monetisation practices are okay and acceptable, and frankly, they’re almost certainly not.

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About The Author
Oliver Brandt
Deputy Editor, sometimes-reviewer, and Oxford comma advocate. If something's published on Vooks, there's a good chance I looked over it first. I spend way too much on games and use way too many em dashes.
1 Comments
  • Silly G
    October 20, 2021 at 8:07 pm

    ‚ÄúAlmost certainly?‚ÄĚ

    Hell no. This kind of nonsense is completely unacceptable. $6 is obscene as it is and I can’t think of a word to describe the sheer perversity of a $60 asking price.

    To put the price into perspective, I’m pretty sure HeartGold/SoulSilver cost me only $50 each back in the day, and they were/are widely regarded as among the best games in the series, and that’s with a physical cartridge and a nifty little pedometer/virtual pet doodad. It seems that too many have forgotten what good value and reasonable spending looks like these days.

    Along with gambling and chance-based purchases with real-world currency, games containing such content should be slapped with a blanket R18+ classification, and perhaps then publishers will think twice before acting like desperate bottom-feeders, because merely criticising these sorts of predatory business practices is insufficient when inadequate legislation allows this to slip under the cracks in games aimed at children. After falling prey to the abomination that is Pok√©mon Shuffle (to the sum of about 900 hours), never again will I touch a ‚Äúfree to play‚ÄĚ game.

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