FarmVille: The Cupid Corn Farm Cash crop and the issue of value

Cupid Corn
Yesterday, Zynga dropped a bomb on the FarmVille community with the Cupid Corn. The issue? It marks the first time in the game's short history that a crop has been released for Farm Cash and has not been attached to a charity. And what's worse is that it does nothing special to deserve that 10 Farm Cash required for a week-long planting permit. Sure, some players could probably master the Cupid Corn in that time, but many FarmVille forum posters have called Zynga out on it.

Money ManForum poster Pletoo recently started a forum thread titled "What WOULD motivate you to spend FC on crop?" While the question is a loaded one, implying that charging Farm Cash for a normal crop isn't fair, he raises a point not only for FarmVille but all games. Shouldn't in-game items or content that cost real money offer something more valuable than standard features or items?

Several contributors in the forum thread agree with Pletoo's cleverly rhetorical question. Some players suggest including a permanent crop that changed with the seasons while others recommend that Cupid Corn be eligible for Co-Op Jobs. However, players like MsChicklet admit that the only motivation they need is "the fact that I've gotten every mastery sign thus far and don't want to miss out on one." Not to say MsChicklet is wrong by any means--there's little reason to judge what people find worthwhile to spend money on--but It's this logic that will make Zynga lots of the green stuff with this move.

This debate isn't new, but many gamers hardcore and social alike (including myself) agree that there is a golden rule to charging money for in-game content: It must at least provide value beyond the game's basic functions and content. Of course, the word "value" is loaded with subjectivity. However, I imagine many will agree that charging for something that does nothing more nor looks vastly different from its free counterparts (in this case Candy Corn) is a far leap from, say, the Unwither Ring. Regardless, if Cupid Corn does well enough in the Market from now through Feb. 23, it wouldn't be surprising to see a far pricier FarmVille.

[Image Credit: Paste]

Did you purchase Cupid Corn yet from the Market and, more importantly, are you satisfied with that purchase? What are your thoughts on Zynga charging real money for one of the game's basic functions? Speak up in the comments. Add Comment.
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