These are games which have currency and items/upgrades to buy, but rather than than shop around town, you order items off a single unified menu in your interface, and it seemingly teleports to your inventory or is magically installed on your ship. Or it is
delivered, but almost immediately by some ridiculously specific and foresighted supply chain, such as being airdropped into the middle of a war zone. If you're carrying physical currency like Cheap Gold Coins
, they are somehow transmitted to the appropriate parties.
It's as though your character has constant access to a web site or mail order retailer that caters just to his needs. The Call Knows Where You Live
, and guarantees delivery in thirty seconds or less! Operators Are Standing By
Another variant is having computer shopping terminals along your journey, which begs the question of why the Evil Overlord
is allowing you to access MoreDakka
.com while you escape his prison.
Other games play this halfway, requiring you to find or shop around for equipment, but allowing you to purchase upgrades on the spot. No blacksmithing/gunsmithing/spaceship-maintenance skills or tools required.
Related to Easy Logistics
. Compare An Economy Is You
, where you do have to actually go shopping, but the entire economy is apparently built around your character; and Intrepid Merchant
, who will turn up in the middle of a Dungeon Crawl
with what you need at LOW, LOW PRICES!
Named for the Home Shopping Network
, a telemarketing company (in)famous for inciting the urge to order a wine glass set, a full line of beauty products and a new computer faster than you can pronounce "buyer's remorse."
As a rule of thumb, cases where it is clearly the player
making the purchase (such as buying ability upgrades after your character has died or using real money in an Allegedly Free Game
) don't count, since these already violate the Fourth Wall
- Counter-Strike awards money for kills and completing objectives. You can buy weapons and upgrades from a menu before each match, or mid-match if you run to the purchasing area.
- Dissidia: Final Fantasy puts the shop in the character customization menu. No in-universe explanation is ever given for this.
Shoot 'em Up
- The save game stations in Final Fantasy XIII are scattered throughout the levels and also serve as shopping stations that provide instant access to a variety of Cocoon shops. The thing is, however, that these stations continue to serve the party even after the heroes are declared public enemies number one by Cocoon authorities and a bunch of them is found on Gran Pulse, where no other piece of Cocoon technology is more recent than the War of Transgression.
- In Valkyrie Profile, you can buy items directly from your menu. Justified in that they're really divinely created items that are being sent directly to you from Asgard.
- Mass Effect 2 and 3 have a variation, allowing you to access the weapon selection screen if you find a new gun while on a mission and wish to equip it. What happens to your old guns if you swap them out and how you can switch in an entirely different gun from either one is left unexplained (though the first game justifies Random Drops with Shepard's omni-tool's microfactory, so a similar explanation is likely).
- In Infinity Blade, you can buy new weapons and armor on the inventory screen with the gold you find lying around. Don't mind that enemy with the drawn weapon in front of you. He'll wait.
- Rails of War, a browser-based flash game, is a justified example. You buy from a menu, but new cars for your war train don't simply appear: they're airdropped by a cargo helicopter that you have to maneuver into position.
Non-Video Game Examples
- In FTL: Faster Than Light, you have to scrounge new weapons and equipment for your ship, but upgrades to your systems can be purchased any time.
- This was managed in Danny Phantom. Tucker says that to defeat Technus, he needs the newest upgrade of a Portals XL operating system, but it's the middle of the night and he doesn't know if he can get it. Luckily, Sam is sufficiently rich that she could order it and get it delivered to them immediately after-hours. Tucker is amazed at this.
- In the What A Cartoon! short Yoink! of the Yukon, Yoink, in a last-ditch effort to make peace between the forrest creatures and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police for swiping their furs, dials the Home Shopping Channel, and shortly thereafter, each of the animals are now adorned in brand new tuxedos, to which Yoink lampshades by remarking, "Now you know what's the best I can do on such short notice, eh?"
- In the Courage the Cowardly Dog episode, "The Forbidden Hat of Gold", Muriel and Eustace are about to be sacrificed by a tribe of monks for their (well, mostly Eustace's) vanity; Courage then dials an unknown number on his cellphone, and is immediately met with a delivery from a Fed Ex Expy of high quality fur coats, that quickly brings out the vanity in each of the monks, causing them to meet their own demise in the end.
- Wile E Coyote seems to have something close to this, he can apparently place an order for any death trap he needs from Acme Products and have it delivered a few minutes later in the middle of the desert. It's not clear how payment is arranged.