Is Jagex’s price increase a long-time strategy or a coincidence?
Jagex announced an upcoming increase in their prices on April 14th, 2022. The changes are scheduled for May 4th. This could affect the entire economy of OSRS as the price per bond is also affected by this change. Ideally, if players pay more for a bond, they would obtain more OSRS gold when selling it to other players. But will this happen? Or is it something that will push more players to buy OSRS gold
Economy Basics: How Does Pricing Work?
The economy is dictated by supply and demand. If the supply decreases and the demand stays the same or increases, the price will increase. If fewer bonds are bought from Jagex, but the same number of players or more want to buy them from the Grand Exchange with OSRS gold to pay for their membership, then the price per bond will increase. However, the market has an excellent way of adjusting itself since if the OSRS GP price per bond reaches high enough, more players will be tempted to obtain OSRS gold through bonds rather than buy OSRS gold from the black market. This will virtually result in more supply, which means a price decrease. This is why the economy can fluctuate before reaching a stable point.
Jagex’s Price Increase: A Long-Time Strategy or A Happy Coincidences?
Other factors influence the OSRS market, such as gold sinks or how much gap is produced/ GP is taken out of the game. Gold sinks are where GP gets naturally taken out of the game, and Jagex has given us quite a few in the past year. Just think of the GE taxes or the nifty features to unlock more bank slots. Taking OSRS gold out of the game has a clear purpose: to make what’s left of it more valuable. Is it a coincidence that Jagex announced a price increase after ensuring that we will sink our GP first? An unnatural way of removing gold from the game is by banning players. Another factor to consider is how much GP enters the game illegally through bot farms and whether it stays in-game or not. It’s hard to know the exact amount, but some speculate it’s a lot. In their article about the upcoming security update, Jagex did state, without going into specifics, that the new OSRS account system will have improved anti-botting features. Can this be another coincidence? Or has Jagex been plotting something behind our backs?
Jagex’s Reasons for Changing the Prices
Jagex mainly blames inflation, development costs, and currency fluctuation for their price increase. All of the three factors that Jagex has mentioned are real. According to research by Statista, the inflation rates for all of the last four years have been over three percent per year, having as a reference the previous year. And if you take a look at Jagex’s website, you’ll find that they are trying to expand the OSRS team by hiring new people.
The Underlying Truth About Jagex’s Message
One theory about Jagex’s real reasons for changing their OSRS prices involves looking at the bigger picture. A picture in which Jagex has a long-time strategy to deal with other game issues while
ensuring that their profit stays the same or grows without infuriating their loyal players. Their rate supports this, and their choice of making the 12-month membership the cheapest per month also sends a clear message about Jagex’s future intentions. In the end, it comes down to increasing profitability, whatever face that may have. We should consider if Jagex is planning a mass ban of the bot farms after they deliver their security update.
How is the Security Updated Related to the Price Update?
The security update is intended to tackle the bot farms and, therefore, the amount of OSRS gold produced daily. This means that GP will become scarce with fewer bots or, ideally, no bots and all the gold sinks. This can take two directions: either you will think twice before spending it on bonds and pay Jagex for membership instead, or you’ll look into alternatives for buying membership, such as spending less per month by getting the 12-month premier club membership but paying more upfront, or buying gold on the black market. But less OSRS gold in-game means lower supply, which means an increased price for gold, even on the black market.
We should also consider the difference a player would pay to obtain the OSRS gold from bonds or the black market. If the difference is too big, then the likelihood that you will choose to buy OSRS gold directly from other players is also considerable. Consider how much you would spend buying a membership directly from Jagex instead of buying GP and trading it for bonds. Even though Jagex seems to be pretty passive when disincentivizing this, their positive reinforcement of the desired behavior they want from players speaks volumes. Jagex’s response is to incentivize the players who buy 12 months of membership. This is the strong point of Jagex’s 2022 price update. Having an all-year-round discounted membership is the best Jagex could have done for its players in terms of pricing, and it also manages to touch on other problematic aspects of the game.