My brother sent me this link about the economics in MMORPGs. The article brought up several cool ideas we can use to interpret these online games under an economic or sociological lens, my favorite being exchange rates.
People pay real money for game money all the time and I wondered what the exchange rate was for World of Warcraft. According to Ebay, one dollar gets you about ten gold. That same dollar could be exchanged for 111.28 yen, 0.819 Euros and .564 Pounds. I’m not yet sure what that means because we don’t know what the PPP is for gold; and coming up with a virtual basket of goods would be problematic as WoW characters don’t need to eat, pay for shelter or do other activities real people need to. If only Ironforge had a McDonald’s.
But because you need to pay for so little as a Warcraft character, and because you can get so much money for just a dollar, I’m betting it’s far cheaper to vacation in Azeroth than in Europe.
No wonder it’s so popular.