When Konami’s Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain released, it came bundled with a weird feature that felt out of place for the traditionally single player series. The Forward Operating Base (FOB) mechanic allows for a kind of PVP gameplay between the mercenary groups of one player and another. Considering your base can be invaded even while offline, and also considering that any resources or personnel lost are lost from single player, the FOB system has been annoying and befuddling since day one. But now, with no apparent sense of irony, Konami has unveiled a new and insidious microtransaction option that lends some insight into why the FOB system was included in MGSV to begin with.
You can now purchase FOB “insurance”, which is hilarious. Last time I checked, the way insurance works is that your provider ends up coughing up money in the event of an accident. In Konami’s case, they don’t ever return your investment. Rather, you just get to keep your men and resources in the event of losing. Your opponent gets personnel and resources equivalent to what was taken, all from an automated system that KONAMI can let run and watch the money come pouring in without ever lifting so much as a finger.
This is perhaps the worst example of a microtransaction ever, at least in terms of full price $60 triple A games. This kind of chicanery might fly in a mobile-based F2P game, but in a MGS title? It’s lunacy, pure and simple. It can’t even be called a ‘pay to win’ model! It’s more of a ‘pay to not lose’ system…which doubles as a nice way to describe extortion, not so coincidentally.