Today's topic we look at the cost of WoW . The answer is actually very easy to determine. Some of you may have seen my comment over at WoW Insider that deals with this topic in regards to the Warlords of Draenor expansion cost, it will be a lot of the same but I will discuss some other things here as well.
An annual sub if you pay monthly is $180 and on expansion years if you buy regular editions you end up spending $220 (for previous expansions) and $230 for WoD. I will not be using either Digital Deluxe or Collectors Edition, because those are value added versions and not necessary to play the game. After the break I will figure out the per hour value of entertainment that $180 or $230 actually is.
First I will start with my average play time, on average now that I am not in college I play 2 days a week for 3-5 (will use 4 as an average) over 48 weeks (holiday weeks and birthday weeks subtracted).
Non expansion year - - $180 / 384 hours = $0.46
Expansion year - - $240 / 384 hours = $0.60
Now I will take a step further lets include the overhead allocation of your internet and electrical cost. To figure out electrical you need to know how many watts your PC uses per hour for this to be accurate I am going to use a flat killowatt because I am running an unconventional setup. My PG&E rate is $0.13230 per kWh so for my 8 hours a week I play WoW it cost me $1.06.
Next you need to find your internet cost per hour, I use Comcast which charges me $66.95 a month, a week my family spend about 14 hours watching Netflix, 5 hours doing work online and emails, 5 hours playing Xbox, and then my 8 hours playing WoW. That totals to 32 out 168 hours, the remaining hours will have their cost distributed to everything.
$66.95 / 730 = $0.10 an hour
Approximately 592 hours unused a month = $59.20
$59.20 / 138 = $0.43 per hour for unuesed allocation
So for every hour of WoW it costs .53
So lets total that up WoW per hour $0.60, electricity per hour $1.06, and $0.53 for internet, which comes out to $218 an hour.
That seems like a great value over movies (2 hrs) which just for me (not including wife & kid) is $13.50/2 = $6.75, which doesn't include snacks, drinks, or the gas it takes to get to the movies.
The value of the $2.18 no doubt diminishes if you are bored with the game or have nothing left to do with what you find enjoyable in the game, but that doesn't change the cost of the game actually fairly reasonable compared to other games. Lets take the current popular game South Park Stick of Truth which through one play through is $3 an hour, and from what I have heard has low replay-ability.
If you find any errors in my math please feel free to let me know an I will make the necessary corrections.
*When rounding I always round up, because when billed for things you don't get things for free so some of these may be inflated for me even.
**Also please note these were using what I am paying for an older Comcast plan and the PG&E rate for my area.