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It Sure Looks Like Pokémon Unite's Microtransactions are Pay to Win

Poorna Shankar Posted:
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It looks like Pokemon Unite’s microtransactions may actually be pay to win as stat boosting items obtained with premium currency.

If you’re not too familiar with Pokemon Unite, it’s TiMi Studio game (owned by Tencent) where it has a Pokemon flavor on the MOBA genre. As noted by TechRaptor, it looks like several players in the Pokemon Unite community have noted the pay to win nature of the mictrotransaction mechanism.

The currency is part of the concern noted by the community. There are three different currencies available in Pokemon Unite. The first is Aeos Coins which you can earn in-game from various activities and events. You can earn up to 2100 per week through battles.

The second currency is Aeos Tickets which can be earned through certain in-game events. The third currency is Aeos Gems which is the premium currency in Pokemon Unite. You can only earn Aeos Gems by shelling out real money.

The pay to win alarms come in with stat boosting items. You can buy these items through the Aeos Emporium using Aeos Coins and Aeos Tickets. However, if you don’t have enough of either currency, you can acquire these items by spending the premium Aeos Gems currency. In other words, you’re paying real money to acquire stat boosting items via Aeos Gems.

Reddit is, understandably, awash with “buyer beware” posts and comments. For example, this thread attempts to inform others in the community about the monetization schemes by frustratingly slow progress to force you into real-money purchases,

“The main issue here is that after the welcome campaign is done, the unlock process is glacial. You will spend months unlocking 1-2 characters at a time, as the feed of currency is very low, and even further, the feed of hard currency is non-existant. I have played 15 games so far and received 0 gems for any part of the experience, and enough soft currency to buy one character.”

It concludes,

Regarding pay to win you can buy tickets with gems which are then spent on the stat boost items. This is called a 3 step currency and is designed to stop people being able to work out the cost of items easily. Its another tactic and a very common one. Its why gems come in bundles that are never equal to the gem cost of anything in-game. Its to deter people from working out value. Essentially it allows the seller to generate their own economy and manipulate it freely.”

Image credit TechRaptor


Poorna Shankar

A highly opinionated avid PC gamer, Poorna blindly panics with his friends in various multiplayer games, much to the detriment of his team. Constantly questioning industry practices and a passion for technological progress drive his love for the video game industry. He pulls no punches and tells it like he sees it. He runs a podcast, Gaming The Industry, with fellow writer, Joseph Bradford, discussing industry practices and their effects on consumers.