Follow TV Tropes


Playing With / Bribing Your Way to Victory

Go To

Basic Trope: Game advantages are gained by paying real world money.

  • Straight: For $10 you can enchant your own sword with +1 Uberness!
  • Exaggerated: For a monthly subscription fee of $100 you'll get a full set of legendary weapons all enchanted with +11 Uberness throughout the subscription period for personal use. You also get your own SNK Boss character, Dragon God thrown in for a one-time cost of $1000!
  • Advertisement:
  • Downplayed: For a small $1 donation, any optional minigame becomes 10% easier.
  • Justified:
    • It's an MMO of some kind, and those kind of games are quite costly to develop and maintain. Without the extra revenue, the game wouldn't ever be profitable, nor feasible at some point.
    • The game is going through a balance change and are running a donation drive. In order to help balance out the players who had previously spent their time on a build rendered useless, they're giving away enough items for normal players to reset, and the extra "power" is being spent to allow players to create a build in the new system they can use.
  • Inverted:
    • Hard mode is unlocked for a mere $10!
    • The game's makers offer money to a player if they don't beat it so quickly.
    • In-game currency, or points/accomplishments, can be turned into real money!
    • The gear available for purchase is significantly worse than any of the gear you can get by normal gameplay.
  • Advertisement:
  • Subverted: That +1 Uberness enchant... it actually just makes your sword look cool.
  • Double Subverted: Bosses offer to just give up, granting automatic wins, since your sword looks so cool.
  • Parodied: The +1 Infinity Sword can be bought for a mere $1 trillion dollars, like a twisted real life version of the Teaser Equipment!
  • Zig Zagged: The game says "free to play", but all the characters talk about weapons with extra Uberness, which needs to be paid for. It turns out extra Uberness comes bundled with other upgrades you can get in game, but the best upgrades cost real money. In the end, the game can be played by people and enjoyed for free, but paying would make things nicer.
  • Averted:
    • The game is open source and non-networked. Charging for easy victories is silly, since anyone can just modify the game.
    • For $10 you can redecorate your character with various alternate outfits and accessories. However, the paid goods are purely cosmetic, so while players who shell out money have nicer-looking gear, they still have to work for equipment that matters just like everyone else.
  • Advertisement:
  • Enforced: Mega-Corp sees how well the game is doing and wants to make more money off of its players...
  • Lampshaded: Description of Sword of Uber: "Made from materials out of this world".
  • Invoked: It's Serious Business. That card of Uberness is just what your card-deck needs to win.
  • Exploited: Special promotion: Every $1 your friend spends on this gets you $0.20 for yourself!
  • Defied: The game makers don't want to upset the balance and squarely make power entirely free, while using other means to get money.
  • Discussed: The description of a game advantage that doesn't cost real money: "As good as stuff that costs real money, maybe even better!"
  • Conversed:
    • Players on forum constantly asks if anyone will sell them a Sword of Uberness.
    • This sparks a flame war on how the player is trying to cheat.
  • Implied: Though the stats are never stated, the way the NPCs talk and how two different players have different encounters does mean that they affect the game in more ways than just their stats, which are otherwise equal to regular items.
  • Deconstructed:
    • The game just barely hangs on. It has good ideas for an MMO but because paying players have a significant advantage over the non-payers, it has a hard time getting new fans after the beta release. The Uberslayer 3000, for 400 gamepoints that are paid for in real life, is 10 times stronger than Dragon's Breath, the strongest free weapon.
    • A custom server for an online multiplayer FPS decides to sell a premium rank. People who buy this get, among other things, unlimited ammo, +50 HP on hit, 200 grenades, no falling damage, build infinite indestructable turrets, can read the other team's chat, etc. One premium player could therefore easily pwn everyone on the entire server at once. This ruins the game for most people, mostly because it ruins the game, by both unbalancing the game for non-premium players, and by ruining the gameplay as it was intended to be. Bonus points if a server like that is the only one with that map you like.
  • Reconstructed:
    • After some major thought, the game gets significantly rebalanced, the paid items stay the same, but free weapons get an upgrade. So Uberslayer 3000 still deals the highest rate of damage, but free weapons offer more effects during battles, and Dragon's Breath now has stronger base damage and a high chance to deal burn, stun, and other weakening debuffs to the enemy.
    • People get a one-day premium trial when they first join and premium is only $1. Also, premiums can't play with free players.
  • Plotted A Good Waste:
    • As it turns out, the sword of Uberness is, in fact, made from the Big Bads power, and by using it you continue to help him power up, to the point where it gets harder to fight him without using even more of his power. It does indeed make the final boss fight against him harder to the point where you need the sword of Uberness to deal decent damage.
    • The IRL-Money items are some form of advertising space, allowing you to literally beat your opponents over the head with ads. Their power is Hand Waved as them basically being sword and armor-shaped holes in the fabric of reality. People who buy too much of this sort of item start to look like race car drivers, what with all the sponsor's logos plastered to them.
  • Played For Laughs:
  • Played For Drama:
    • Newsflash: Kid spends $1,000 of parent's money on his own virtual Castle of Uberness.
    • Characters with ads out the arse eventually get re-classified as Humanoid Abominations.

Why stay with the low level players at the Playing With page when you can get the Main Page upgrade pack for only 10 dollars? Buy now!