Consumers Put At Ease Regarding Currency System in MLB 14: The Show

Posted February 14th, 2014 at 1:45 pm


Following NBA 2K14, which featured a damaging new implementation of “Virtual Currency”, consumers awareness to in-game economies and how they can dramatically alter enjoyment of games has been heightened. 2K14 is not the only recent culprit of taking things too far with Forza 5 being just another example – though Turn 10 at least tried to address the backlash by making changes while 2K chose to ignore it.

As written about in early January, what this has created is a situation where publishers need to get out in front of things and detail how their currency systems work otherwise consumers will naturally assume the worst. There is a healthy distrust towards these companies right now in this regard and bad timing struck SCEA who rolled out promotion for a new “Universal Currency” system in a pre-order bonus during the height of controversy. 

While SCEA allowed those concerns to linger they have now commented on what the Universal Currency system will mean in MLB 14: The Show and that’s all anyone was asking for.

We’re simplifying add-on purchases from seasons past, rolling everything into a Universal Currency we’re calling Stubs. We want to be very clear with this, however, since it’s a frequent question and concern among the community: not one cent needs to be spent on Stubs for users to enjoy a full experience in any of our modes.

What’s more, Stubs are earned through general gameplay (just like XP) and tied to your Universal Profile. Most importantly, the rate at which Stubs are earned is intentionally generous. We are not designing the system to pressure players into spending money. It will be the same system it’s been in years prior, just all rolled together with a new name.

Of course 2K Sports would have, and probably still would attempt to, claim the same for how they implemented VC in 2K14. However there is no reason to doubt SCEA here. While having a universal system could still influence the way people play the game to an extent, no one will mind if what they claim in the statement turns out to be true. Clearly the message is intended to assure consumers that they aren’t walking into another 2K14 situation.

The widespread concern over micro/macrotransactions and related design decisions was never just SCEA’s problem but an industry one. All publishers will face questions going forward on whether consumers should be worried over how much of the game they’re actually getting and whether they can play it the way they want without having to shell out even more money.

  • gramm

    Good to hear. I know Im not buying another NBA 2K unless we know they have fixed VC. I wouldnt have bought The Show either if it was like 2K14.

  • nyr2k2

    thank god. microtransactions, particularly in full-priced games, are just the worst.

  • BustyBuffet

    You know, if you download the MyNBA2k app, you can easily get over 1,000 VC a day. Most of the time I get closer to 1,500.

  • It seems no matter how well the situation is explained, you just don’t get it, and refuse to consider how it affects other people. You only play one single mode and the complaints weren’t about how it affects people in your situation. It significantly altered the way others (in MyGM, or those who play MyCareer and MyGM or MyTeam) could play.

    • Keith.

      Nonsense. The game’s selling like gangbusters. If it was really “significantly altering the way others play,” the way you claim, sales would suffer. Instead, it’s the best-selling NBA 2k ever. And it’s showing no signs whatsoever of slowing down anytime soon.

      • That’s not really true…but believe what you want.

        • Keith.

          You read EA’s mind:

          “EA’s Hilleman Suggests Battlefield 4 Launch Woes Overblown”

          This was posted at last week — let me know if you need a link.

          • Skopin

            So your view of 2k’s issues is the same as Hilleman’s view of Battlefield;s issues.

    • Smsixx

      The problem with NBA 2k is not the virtual currency. The biggest issue is not being able to play your franchise/ my player when servers are down. If 2k had this problem corrected no one would give two shits about the VC….I sure as hell don’t…especially since (as stated) downloading the app or playing a full game nets you more VC then you can even handle…I have 10,200 untouched right now. 2k needs to just make sure that next year you can play your damn my career without having to rely on an internet connection.

  • Tim Bliss

    Great news, I had faith in the SCEA guys to begin with, but this just backs up the faith I had in them.