Would you pay $60 to boost a character to level 90?

Blizzard has explained its decision to sell World of Warcraft level 90 character boosts for $60.

Those who buy the Warlords of Draenor expansion get a single level to 90 boost at no extra cost, but Blizzard will sell the boost from the World of Warcraft store so players can instantly level more characters.

Last week WOW Insider spotted the level 90 boost on the store and took a picture before it was removed from Blizzard.

Speaking to Eurogamer, World of Warcraft lead encounter designer Ion Hazzikostas said Blizzard decided to sell the boost separately because it didn't want players to have to buy two copies of the expansion in order to boost more than one character.

"We realised as soon as we came out with Warlords of Draenor boost to 90, we knew that there was going to be demand for more than 1," he said.

"It's tremendously awkward to tell someone that you should buy two copies of the expansion just to get a second 90. That's odd. So we knew at that point we were going to have to offer it as a separate service."

But why go for $60, a price point that came in higher than many were expecting? Because Blizzard didn't want to "devalue the accomplishment of levelling".

"In terms of the pricing, honestly a big part of that is not wanting to devalue the accomplishment of levelling," Hazzikostas said.

"If our goal here was to sell as many boosts as possible, we could halve the price or more than that - make it $10 or something. And then hardly anyone would ever level a character again.

"But levelling is something that takes dozens if not over 100 hours in many cases and people have put serious time and effort into that, and we don't want to diminish that."

He added: "I am not an economist, I'm not the one setting the dollar value myself, but it's not the profit maximising price. That was not our aim here."

Some players have expressed concern that the new boost will eradicate levelling from the massively multiplayer online role-playing game, creating, in effect, an environment in which players pay for progression.

Hazzikostas denied this assertion.

"The intent here isn't to create a world where no-one levels," he said.

"It's just to allow people who want to purchase additional level 90s, maybe they want a second or third alt and they don't have time to level it themselves because they have a family or etc - it's to allow them to do that."

Blizzard is yet to announce the cost of the character boost in Europe.

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Wesley Yin-Poole

Wesley Yin-Poole

Deputy Editor

Wesley is Eurogamer's deputy editor. He likes news, interviews, and more news. He also likes Street Fighter more than anyone can get him to shut up about it.

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