The Coffee break. 8 October 2014.
Steam recently switched their USD pricing over to Canadian dollar pricing for those of us living in Canada. This change occurred (what I believe to be) sometime late last week as when the log-in occurred, the news section popped up with the message that all items for customers in Canada are now priced in CAD. This change is rather not all too consequential as the Canadian dollar and the United States dollar have been near or at par for quite some time now. That said, it is probably the fact that I have gotten used to paying for games in USD that I say this – the truth is I appreciate the prices being listed in Canadian dollars as it helps me better gauge how much the game really costs on my end.
Until recently, I believe the only distributor that sold in Canadian dollars online was EA Origin. While GoG probably paid the difference out of their own pocket to ensure that I, the customer, got the best service available, it was EA Origin that surprised me the most as the games I bought on there (Battlefield 4, Mass Effect 3, etc) were all priced in Canadian dollars – much to my surprise as when I went to tally up the total for my bills to be paid at the end of the month the prices were exactly the same as what I saw on screen.
Localization – especially in currency – is important so that the customers know the true cost of how much they need to dish out in order to acquire a product. Take Forge World for example (the sub-company of Games Workshop), their products are all priced in pounds sterling. Now if I was to – say – ask for a box of Iron Hands Immortals from the Horus Heresy section, the total cost of the product would not be “37.00 CAD” because it is priced in pounds sterling (the price of it is 37.00 pounds). The true cost of the box set is (according to the exchange rate of the 8th of October 2014) $66.50 CAD. Sixty-six dollars Canadian, now that is a huge jump from the initial estimate – though pounds sterling is worth more than the US dollar so this is to be expected.
See how currency exchange rates can dramatically alter prices for certain products? This is probably why it is nice to see Steam games listed in CAD on my end; there is no room for confusion, and no room for misinterpretation. Now onto some news: The Old Republic is offering a new expansion set to be released some time in December. The “Shadow of Revan” expansion will feature new endgame content, as well as a bonus feature for those of us still in the lower levels.
Should you choose to pre-order the expansion right now, then you will be able to get a x12 experience boost for all class story missions until December 1st: good news for those of us that have rolled 11 – 12 (maximum character slots for subscribers) characters of which only a few are up to, or near, level 40. Now some people of course are not too happy with this – they themselves want to experience the game as it was meant to be experienced. Yet for someone such as I who threw down some seventy-seven dollars for the 180 day-subscription but failed to level my main characters to maximum level, this is a welcome bonus indeed. The expansion definitely will not require a new graphics card for example – or any sort of hardware upgrade for that matter – and as such the risk is minimized. Further reducing the risk is the fact that the asking price is set to twenty dollars USD – a heck of a lot cheaper than some expansion packs out there on the market.
Now those of you who read my debrief will no doubt be aware that I recently ended my subscription to take a break. Well it looks like I might have to do that 60 day non-reoccurring subscription – this chance to finish off the campaign story arcs might just be the thing that I need as I am rather sick of side quests and flashpoints at this stage. Getting through the story missions might help a lot, and as such I may have to invest that fifty or so dollars for the experience. Oh Old Republic, I just gave you some money for the cartel coins needed to unlock a few sections for my character. That said, at least the expansion is twenty dollars, unlike Blizzard entertainment who charge 60.00 per expansion (at release anyways), plus offer no options to play your character once your subscription has ended. TOR, you just got another happy customer (oh my wallet, it hurts).
Alright folks this concludes the Coffee Break for the 8th of October 2014. Keep playing out there, and I shall see you next time.