Square Enix has removed the pay-to-win microtransactions from Marvel’s Avengers. That’s got to be cause for celebration, right?
No, it’s not, for two reasons. Firstly, commercial, full-price games shouldn’t feature pay-to-win mechanics, full stop. Secondly, Square Enix only added the “Hero’s Catalysts” and “Fragment Extractors” to Marvel’s Avengers last month, breaking a promise that “…we won’t have random lootboxes or pay-to-win scenarios.”
“We did not see them as pay-to-win since they don’t offer power directly,” reads Square Enix’s statement, which confirms both have now been yanked. That’s the weakest non-excuse I’ve heard in quite some time and it doesn’t stand up to even momentary consideration.
“We hope this can be the first step in rebuilding your confidence in us as a team,” the statement also reads. But it beggars belief that someone at Square Enix saw that as a genuine loophole, one that the company wouldn’t be pilloried over.
We have decided that by the end of today we will remove Hero’s Catalysts and Fragment Extractors for purchase. pic.twitter.com/8am9nSstP2
— Marvel's Avengers (@PlayAvengers) November 2, 2021
Understandably, the gaming community wasn’t happy, the YouTube based elements in particular, and while their ire is sometimes woefully misdirected, in this case they were right on the money. So, while Marvel’s Avengers still has cosmetic microtransactions, the pay-to-win features are gone. We got a real kick out of playing Marvel’s Avengers (you can read our review here) but this whole suspect situation hasn’t done Square Enix any favours.