Nintendo confirmed a rumored Animal Crossing and Lego collaboration in an October 5 teaser trailer, and later announced the collab’s March 2024 release date in a trailer with more details on what it will entail.
What You Should Know About Mario Strikers’ Big Free Update
In August, multiple reliable Lego leakers, including news site Falconbricks, suggested that Nintendo would work with the toy building company on five Animal Crossing sets ranging from $15 (170 pieces) to $75 (535 pieces), and despite the minifig-packed trailers, we still don’t know the validity of these claims.
The October 5 trailer shows a number of Animal Crossing villagers—including grinning cat Rosie and blushing rabbit Bunnie—and series mainstay characters—like public transportation king Kapp’n, entrepreneurial raccoon Tom Nook, and helpful Shih Tzu Isabelle—as claw-handed Legos. They stand in a plastic tree forest and jump around, thrilled at the present suspended by a blue balloon (in Animal Crossing, blue balloons indicate a crafting item), which passes through the clouds and reveals AC’s and Lego’s logos side by side.
Nintendo’s October 10 trailer elaborated on things, displaying set pieces to match your aforementioned AC neighbors. It looks like you’ll be able to create Nook’s Cranny, Kapp’n’s speedboat, and more immersive town elements, including a wedge of hilly grass ridged with Money Rocks you can peel off with a Lego shovel.
Based on these teasers, it looks like AC’s collaboration will include at least the eight minifigs shown in both trailers, a number of village locations (a camp site, a small home, a party set, etc.), and environmental elements, like green apple, orange, and cherry trees and a short waterfall. For more decor, Bunnie holds a leafy flower in her hand, and there are pale yellow and pink flowers, which look like they could represent AC’s hyacinths or roses, poking out of the ground, too.
Read More: Looks Like Lego Animal Crossing Sets Are Coming
Nintendo and Lego have been working together since 2020. From this marriage, you can currently buy a massive Lego Bowser set for $270 (Lego), a content-looking green Lego Toad in a $6 blind box (Lego), or a $270 Lego CRT TV (Lego) playing an NES copy of Super Mario Bros. But this just-announced AC collaboration is the first ever Animal Crossing set, and it’s the first brave enough to stop invoking mustachioed plumbers.
Overwatch 2’s collaboration with K-pop group Le Sserafim is out now, and it brings a limited-time game mode, cosmetics for specific heroes, and an animated music video featuring characters attending the group’s concert. But now that the skins, emotes, and other cosmetics are out, fans are feeling split on how much the whole collaboration costs. Let’s break it down and get into why the prices are both contentious and, somehow, a relief for Overwatch 2 players.
Overwatch 2’s New Story Missions: Worth The Money?
What’s the cheapest way to buy the Overwatch 2 X Le Sserafim cosmetics?
The event brings new skins, emotes, victory poses, and name cards to five of the game’s heroes. Tracer, Sombra, Kiriko, Brigitte, and D.Va all have individual bundles that cost 2500 premium coins ($25). Kiriko, who continues to prove Blizzard’s favorite these days, also gets a weapon charm, but her bundle itself doesn’t cost more than the others.
Buying each on their own would cost you $125, but all of them are bundled together for 6800 coins ($68), which is about half the à la carte price. There’s also a limited-time discount on buying 7500 coins, which would normally cost about $75, but are on sale for $50 at the moment. This means you can buy everything sold during the collaboration for $50 if you press the right buttons.
Read more: The Overwatch 2 Girlies Serve In K-Pop Group Le Sserafim Music Video
If you haven’t spent a single coin you’ve earned through weekly challenges, you might be able to afford one of these bundles without opening your wallet, but because Overwatch 2 is free-to-play and built around the grind, in all likelihood you’re going to have to shell out some cash.
This event is an outlier compared to some previous bundles in the Overwatch 2 in one notable way: You can buy individual pieces through the Heroes menu, rather than having to splash out for the larger packages and acquire extra junk along with the item you actually want. If I felt so compelled, I could buy Sombra’s skin without having to pay the extra cash that would get me everything else. The skin alone will still run you 1900 coins ($19, which is basically $20 because you can’t buy coins in exact increments), but if you want to be more precise with your spending, that is an option.
Overwatch 2 fans are split on the costs
But while fans on places like Reddit are expressing relief that this isn’t a $100 bundle, others are pointing out that even if it breaks through the usual restrictions of Overwatch 2’s store, $50 is still a lot of fucking money to change your character’s clothes and make them dance.
“Hey guys, five cosmetics are ONLY as much as a full sized video game entirely,” said Redditor Browsersinsidestory.
Spending money on microtransactions (or anything, really) is inevitably about how you, personally, view the value of your own money compared to the thing you’re buying. Trying to ascribe some kind of universal standard as to how much something “should” cost will inevitably lead to online anger and ridicule, and there’s already plenty of name-calling going around over the Overwatch 2 X Le Sserafim collab. But for some, the math checks out compared to other live service games.
“I have issues with the pricing, don’t get me wrong, but this, alongside the coin bundle bonus, actually seems fine,” Reddit user funnyghostman wrote. “If you tried to get five collab sets in Fortnite (and I’m using the Dragon Ball collab as an example) it’d cost you 12.2k (which means you’ll have to get the highest-price bundle, bonuses included). Since the norm in modern live-service monetization discussions is comparing it to Fortnite, I’d say this is actually pretty decent.”
Some folks might break down the cost as reasonable because paying $50 for all five heroes’ cosmetics makes each bundle $10 a pop, but just because that’s the breakdown it doesn’t change that you can’t pay just $10 for a single bundle, so that pricing exists only for people willing and able to pay $50.
It also entirely hinges on how much value people put behind cosmetics in a game they can play repeatedly for free.
“To each their own.” Reddit user mundozeo wrote. “I realize some people have so much money they just don’t care where they throw it at. I’m just very practical with what I get out of mine. I’d rather buy a game or a month of [Game Pass] that I can play and enjoy than a skin.”
Is Overwatch 2 doing better, or are we just used to overpaying?
Normally I find conversations around the cost of video games and microtransactions insufferable because they typically devolve into people talking down to others about how they spend and value their own money in the capitalist hellscape we live in. No one, not me, not you, not anyone else, can determine how much anything should be “worth” to anyone else. But it does stand out to me that Overwatch 2’s still very high cosmetic prices are receiving some warm reactions largely in comparison to the level of exploitation we’ve come to expect from both it and its live-service contemporaries.
As onlookers have been quick to point out (not always kindly), Overwatch 2’s costly cosmetics are a bed of its own making, and even if the game has workarounds to acquire certain items more cheaply, this shit still costs a lot of money and Overwatch 2’s premium currency is not easy to unlock just through playing. As long as these events only stick around for limited times, players who aren’t willing to open their wallets are going to miss out on something.