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The Day of the 1Bil Plex…

November 20, 2014

November 20th, a date remembered for numerous events in history. The Nazi war crime trials began in Nuremberg, Microsoft released Windows 1.0, and on this day in twenty hundred and fourteen PLEX prices hit the one billion ISK mark within EvE Online.

While the previous three months saw some consistency in prices, the last thirty days began a frightening escalation in prices leading to today’s current jaw dropping prices. It will be interesting to see how the player market will respond. It may only be a 100-150 mil increase from the previous month, but every marketing major can explain the public purchasing implications adding a digit has. It’s the same reason why products will stay at $99.99 or $9.99 as long as possible before jumping to that next digit. It’s a mental wall to the customers buying the product and can have devastating effects on sales.

So let’s take a look what you could of bought with that one billion ISK that you now have to spend on game time;
2.7 Rattlesnakes
1.6 Machariels
2.6 months of pos fuel for a Minmatar control tower
526,315 rounds of XL antimatter
90% of a Nidhoggur
Nearly 50% of a dreadnaught

On the one hand this could be viewed as bad news for CCP. “That’s insane” you say “CCP wants PLEX prices high so people will buy accounts!” Not necessarily.

Most people who buy PLEX off the market for ISK are not the type to just say “damn, guess I’m going to have to pay real money now” infact these people tend to just unsub accounts they don’t need when they can’t afford to use plex to keep it running, or consolidate wanted characters onto less accounts. Supercapital pilots in particular have also been known to have a PLEX in reserve during down times and only to re-subscribe when necessary. People who also use plex to activate the training queue of an alt character on the same account as a main will now also think twice due to the rising costs of doing so.

On the other hand, to people who purchase PLEX as an ISK income to then go on to purchase in game items it is a god send, they now have to buy less with their hard earned real life money to enjoy their internet spaceship game. Either way one side of the market generally does not switch to the other. With current PLEX prices a player wanting a regular carrier would need a mere two PLEX to purchase not only the hull but also a decent fit. Going back only two years, the same ship and fit would have needed more than four times the amount of PLEX for the same outcome. The end result is that the people purchasing the PLEX need less for what they wish accomplish and therefor buy less from CCP to put on the market.

A good thing coming out of the PLEX price situation is that it has nearly killed the RMT problem CCP has been fighting for years. Why bother buying from a sketchy 3rd party when you can buy a good amount of ISK the legal way? Regardless how this unfolds for CCP there does not seem to be any sign of the PLEX market stabilizing anytime soon.