Numbered prints. Limited product runs. Promo cards. First editions. Misprints. Ticket stubs from a concert. A t-shirt from a convention you went to back in 2008.
If it’s hard to get, it’s more desirable; exclusivity adds value. If you personally had something to do with the creation of the item (say, completing a challenge or yes, merely SHOWING UP for an event), even more so. Note that value != monetary value. Emotional value is just as legitimate, if not more.
In MMOs, and many, MANY other video games, exclusive items are one way that companies reward veteran players. Collectors editions and pre-orders come with exclusive swag. Conventions give out promo codes. Limited annual events have items that can only be gotten at that time. Region-locked cosmetics exist. Google “pre order collector’s edition game” and tell me how many games offer them. Why is that? Because a lot of people like this stuff, and the assumption that it is somehow wrong or toxic to enjoy them is incredibly gross.
It is normal and ok to enjoy exclusive items or even–god forbid–feel a little special because you have them
It is normal to want to preserve an experience you had under the expectation that it was a one-time deal. No one is oppressing or gatekeeping you from World of Warcraft because you can’t get 1-3% of the hundreds of thousands of items available to collect in the game. It’s okay for people who have been doing a thing longer to have more rewards than you. It’s okay for them to enjoy those rewards.
These posts attempting to name and shame people for wanting to keep their mage tower appearances special are so entitled and toxic. I can’t fathom going into a nearly 17 year old game and honestly expecting to be able to collect every item. Here are some ridiculous points that have been slung around lately:
People who want exclusive items literally only derive joy from the suffering of others
New players are not going to join WoW because a miniscule % of items (they they don’t know exist) are no longer available
The happiness of players of who enjoy having exclusive items is wrong and secondary to the happiness of players who feel they should be able to have every item
The content wasn’t hard (because I said so), so you don’t deserve to place value the rewards you “earned” (but I aggressively demand access to those same rewards)
The only way to enjoy the game is the way I say is OK (and anyone who says otherwise is a morally bankrupt, gatekeeping jerk)
If every item in the game isn’t available to every player, the game will suffer catastrophically somehow I guess
You don’t have the moral high ground for not caring about exclusive items. No one is trying to make you care. But you are not superior to people who do care. Your gaming experience is not more valuable than theirs. You are not a better person because you want mage tower appearances to come back.
Please chill. You will survive if the people who enjoy collecting exclusives are given a pittance of items to keep to themselves.
TLDR; You don’t have to care about exclusive items, but you don’t get to decide how everyone else has to feel about them. No one is being harmed. Let people have fun.