Charging players for changing genders in-game wasn’t “sending the right message”
Blizzard Entertainment has confirmed that when World Of Warcraft’s ‘Shadowlands’ expansion arrives later this year, it’ll drop its gender-change fees.
In an interview with Eurogamer, executive producer John Hight spoke about the gender-changing mechanic, and promised that players will be able to change their gender in-game along with their appearance at the barber shop.
The current iteration of the game charges players USD$15 every time they want to change genders. The ‘Shadowlands’ update will make this mechanic free.
“A long time ago, we had the ability for players to go in – it was actually a paid service – and change their character. Much of that is now in the barber shop in the game,” Hight said.
“And as we were adding things up in ‘Shadowlands’, we realised, ‘Gosh the only way you can change your gender in World Of Warcraft is to go through this paid service.’ And we felt like that’s not the right message,” he continued.
Hight went on to explain that this isn’t an easy fix that can be rolled out in the next couple of weeks. Instead, it has to be embedded into the system, and will only rolled out with the ‘Shadowlands’ expansion.
“Unfortunately we can’t fix that right now but it is our intent with ‘Shadowlands’ to take that out of being a paid service thing and [put it] in the barber shop,” he said. “But that’s not something we can easily hotfix – unfortunately we can’t do that right now. It is something that we’re going to have in Shadowlands itself.”
It is currently unclear if this feature will be added for all players when the update arrives, including those who don’t buy the expansion.
A firm release date for ‘World Of Warcraft: Shadowlands’ has not been announced, but it is expected to arrive by the year’s end. World Of Warcraft is currently available on PC.