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February 14th, 2013, 07:18
First off, let's not conflate the RMAH with the GAH. Obviously Blizzard makes nothing off the GAH. Since the silly claim I'm debunking is that Blizzard made a conscious decision to bork the itemization system in order to make more money, let's try to keep that in mind.

Second, the proof is in even the most conservative of estimates. The numbers simply don't pencil out. Even if Blizzard assumed lower sales than could be reasonably expected and higher participation in the RMAH than could be reasonably expected, the idea they would threaten sales by screwing with the item system in the hopes they could make it up in RMAH fees is so outside the realm of possibilities as to be laughable. I went through an estimation exercise on this in another thread a while ago. I'm not going to do it again here, but grossly overestimating RMAH revenue still left it somewhere on the order of magnitude of one hundredth to one thousandth of what could be reasonably expected from retail sales. Hardly the kind of Cost/Benefit ratio we could expect the secret-Bobby-screw-them-with-RMAH-fees cabal to green light unless they were insane.

Next up: legendary drop rate. They have increased it since launch. Multiple times and in multiple ways. We've already covered this ground. Multiple times. Add to that the fact that tons of legendaries and sets are available in the GMAH at prices even a normal player like me (I haven't even made it to Inferno on a single char) can afford, and another hole sinks the Good Ship Conspiracy.

Finally, saying they wouldn't turn down the extra RMAH revenue is far, far different then saying they made it a key design element to the point they architected the item system around it. Let’s not change the argument or make false analogies.
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