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Elder Scrolls IV: Nickel and Dimed

Ken Weeks

We always knew that  "micro-transactions" via Xbox Live Marketplace were part of Microsoft's master strategy for squeezing every last penny out of the gaming public. Now that Elder Scrolls IV horse armor is on sale for the low, low price of 200 marketplace points ($2.50), it's hard not to feel like we're being nickel and dimed into economic oblivion.

Isn't this really just a back door way to further jack up the cost of games by charging us for stuff that should have been on the disc anyway? On one hand, it seems sort of flinty to complain about  a nice add-on for the price of a Big Gulp, but then you can dig into the couch for change only so many times before you come up with nothing but stale Cheetohs.

Admittedly, Oblivion is a great gameplay value compared to other $60 games, and the ability to pimp your equine ride is pretty cool (though it would be nice if it came with a side quest or something). Is Bethesda's first micro-transaction micro enough for you, or am I Tamriel's biggest cheapskate?

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