If you were ever wondering how exactly Riot intended to make bank on VALORANT, here’s your answer: skins that cost over $130.
Riot Games announced the first cosmetic for their free-to-play shooter overnight, unveiling the first set of dragon-inspired weapons. It’s called Elderflame, and the guns, quite literally, look like you’re holding a young, moody dragon.
It’s a little reminiscent of Symmetra’s dragon skin from Overwatch, although the weapons here are a little more interactive. There’s a knife, a replacement for the Vandal, what looks like a dragon version of the Judge shotgun, a replacement for the Operator, and a new Frenzy (the fully automatic machine pistol).
It’s the first Ultra Edition skin in the game and, as you’d expect, the pricing is astronomical. Skin prices in VALORANT were already pretty high, but the Elderflame is reaching into almost absurd levels. Joe Lee, the revenue lead for VALORANT, posted Thursday morning that the price point for the four Elderflame skins — meaning one of the skins would comes free, presumably the knife as per the existing skin packs — would be 9900 Valorant Points (VP).
Price tiers reminder: https://t.co/MgWQFSc78c
So the bundle is 2475 x 4 = 9900 VP
— Joe Lee (@SWAGGERNAU7) July 8, 2020
In Australian dollars, the whole skin line will cost you at least $138. That’s because you can only buy up to 9750 VP at a time, meaning you have to pay $129.99 for 9750 VP, and then another $7.99 for the rest of the points you need.
It’s not the most people, Australians or otherwise, have paid for virtual skins. But a lot of that price has been inflated by the machinations of the secondary Steam market — developers haven’t traditionally charged such insane amounts for cosmetic items, certainly not in Western games.
If you just wanted to buy the skins individually, the price would be about $39 — because you’d have to buy 2175 VP points at $30.99, then 525 VP points at $7.99.
And it’s only five skins: there’s no skins for the other popular weapons like the Phantom assault rifle, Ghost or Sheriff pistols, or the hilariously annoying light-machine guns.
The bundle will be live in the VALORANT store from July 10, possibly July 11 Australian time due to timezones differences.
Please do not spend $130-plus dollars on virtual items. Especially in the middle of a global recession. The game’s plenty of fun with the regular skins.