Earlier in the year, Gaming Bus reported that Diablo III will be using real-world money transactions for the auction house, but despite the controversy Blizzard has stood by that decision. Battle.net has officially revealed that Blizzard intends to handle those online transactions by using PayPal.
The PayPal service currently works with 190 countries and multiple currencies. There is currently no option to use PayPal to order current Blizzard products on the Battle.net website with a North American account. The only support that Blizzard currently gives PayPal is the online subscription service for World of Warcraft.
The official statement reads:
We’re pleased to announce that in most regions, PayPal will be our payment-service partner for the Diablo III auction house, allowing players who trade with real-world currency the ability to cash out the spoils of their battle-torn adventures via a PayPal account.
PayPal will also soon be added in several regions as a payment option on Battle.net, providing another convenient and secure payment method for digital purchases of Blizzard products and services.
We’ll share region-related specifics, as well as further details on everything mentioned above, in the near future.
Analysis: This is a good idea to use a company that already handles putting money in and out of your account. There are a few things that I take away from this though: One, notice the statement said “most regions.” This makes me wonder what regions will be locked out and if Blizzard plans to offer other solutions to those players. Second, Blizzard had better not remember my PayPal info. The call for privacy is great here, and we know that servers are not impenetrable and even the most robust security measures can fail. Third, they said, “Stay tuned!” Stay tuned for what, exactly? My head is in a whirlwind thinking about what it could be about. Is there going to be a fee with each transaction? Will there be a fee when only certain amounts are reached? Honestly, these scenarios worry the hell out of me, but I’m worried Blizzard and PayPal are working out deals I can’t think of. Paypal is a company who survives on fees, so are the players of Diablo III going to pay these prices?
The business answer is yes, and the gamers’ answer is I sure hope not. I’m not being a conspiracy theorist here; I’m raising legitimate concerns as a gamer. Companies seem to think all gamer resources are infinite, and that assumption couldn’t be further from the truth. We may pay for DLC for a game even if it does seem silly like horse armor, but we don’t do that for every single game we buy because we have other responsibilities that come first.
I honestly feel like something’s not being told to us by either company with wording like that. I do hope that I’m wrong, but with how they’ve treated the community with persistent online requirements for even single player—and how they require our own personal cash for the auction house—can you blame me for being concerned and in the worst possible ways?
Diablo III was a game that I was looking forward to, but it’s looking more and more unattractive to me with each new announcement they make. This isn’t the worst of them, but it certainly isn’t helping their chances of my picking it up with so many questions left unanswered.