Borderlands 3’s Status with Microtransactions Clarified by 2K Games
Borderlands 3 will indeed contain microtransactions, but only related to cosmetic apparel.
There has been a lot of commotion this week dealing with Borderlands 3 and in-game purchases, otherwise known as microtransactions. Despite confirming at the Borderlands 3 gameplay reveal event earlier in the week that the game would allow players to spend money on cosmetic items, Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford ended up fighting back against the notion of this qualifying as “microtransactions” in a bizarre string of tweets directed towards publication Game Informer.
Because of this, the actual nature of microtransactions in Borderlands 3 has become a bit unclear and altogether just somewhat confusing due to how much Pitchford has claimed they aren’t present. Luckily, the game’s publisher, 2K Games, has now given its own statement on the matter that and in the process has hopefully cleared all of this up.
In a statement given to Game Informer, a representative from 2K Games said the following:
“Players will have the option to purchase certain cosmetic items like character, vehicle, and weapon skins, but none of these purchases would be considered pay-to-win or impacting on the gameplay, like weapons or actual gear.”
So there you have it. Yes, microtransactions will be present in Borderlands 3 whether Pitchford wants to agree with that sentiment or not. Is that a bad thing that he should be trying to distance himself from? In my opinion, no.
Microtransactions have never inherently been an overwhelmingly evil thing included in video games, unless they somehow end up impacting the gameplay experience. The reason Star Wars Battlefront II proved to be such a breaking point for microtransactions in games was because the way they were originally planned to be implemented would have directly affected the multiplayer experience. Here in Borderlands 3, having the option to buy some new skins for your character, guns, or vehicles affects nothing other than your own enjoyment. More power to you if you decide to spend your hard-earned money to get some cosmetics for yourself.
Of course, these microtransactions could still prove to be problematic with their implementation in a multitude of ways that we still aren’t aware of. The prices for skins could end up being outrageous or Borderlands 3 could shove purchasable items in your face left and right throughout the experience. There’s still more we’ll have to learn about these microtransactions in Borderlands 3, but at a baseline level, there shouldn’t be much concern to have yet.
Borderlands 3 is set to launch this fall on September 13 for PS4, Xbox One, and PC on the Epic Games Store.