In App Purchases and Other Abominations

Some marketing genius came up with this thing for games called “in app purchases” — You give the game away for free but let people buy more of the tokens they need to continue playing the game for some piddly price like $1.99 or $2.99.   Loose all your lives?  Buy five more for just $2.99.  Need more bombs or fizzies?  Buy 10 more for $9.99.  You get the idea.  Insidious and not a little sleazy, if you ask me.   Of course, you can get more lives for free if you wait a set limit of time — like five more lives if you wait 24 hours.  I’ve got about six games of this ilk downloaded to the Fire 10-inch tablet.  When I’m in that mood, I play one until I use up all the lives on that game, then go on to the next one.  I can play for quite a while doing that and I get the additional satisfaction of beating their racket.

I’m teetering on the brink of starting the first of Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander books.  I’ve read all her “Lord John” books, and I really liked them, but I just don’t know whether I want to get into that whole Stürm und Drang of a soap opera that is the main story line.  I got the first book (“Outlander“) as a free download for Kindle at some point and I’ve bought the second book in the series (“Dragonfly in Amber“).  They’re hefty books — door-stop class. Lord John doesn’t even make an appearance until Dragonfly in Amber and he’s only 16 at the time.  Sheesh.  Maybe after the first of the year.

— Speaking of “in app purchases,” Amazon Kindle frequently takes an older/longer/completed series of books whose sales are starting to run out of gas and offers the first book in the series for free as a limited time offer — which is how I got the first Outlander book as well as several others.  The idea is, of course, that if you like the first book, you’ll spring for more books in the series.  That’s “Amazon” spelled “o-c-t-o-p-u-s.”

Pet peeve number umpty-eleven:  Books written in first person.  Just not into it.  Not sorry.

Here’s your helpful homemaking hint for the day:  How to serve toast (for three or more people).  Cut the piece of toast on the diagonal, from the left upper corner to the right lower corner.  Then close up the two pieces like they were a book cover and stand them up on a plate.

Do the same for each slice. This way there’s room for you to insert a finger to pick up the piece of toast without touching the piece next to it.  (Of course, you’d want to use a bigger plate.)  This would also be a great way to serve Texas Toast if you garlic-buttered each slice, then cut them and put them together like this on a sheet of foil, which you wrapped them up in, then put the foil package in the oven to melt the butter.   You, too, can be the hostess with the mostest.

Nuts.  Now I’m hungry.

n.b.  In case you haven't sussed what I'm doing, I have long made a habit in this blog of linking words to their definitions when I think the usage is idiosyncratic to a particular place (Texas), region (South), or country, or is one of those off-the-wall idiomatic expressions English is prone to; this for those countries who speak a different brand of English, or for whom English is not their first language.

Author: WOL

My burrow, "La Maison du Hibou Sous Terre" is located on the flatlands of West Texas where I live with my computer, my books, and a lot of yarn waiting to become something.

2 thoughts on “In App Purchases and Other Abominations”

  1. Shoot. Now that I’ve read all that about the toast (especially the garlic butter Texas toast) I’m hungry, too. I’m not actually hungry, I just want some. Not happening tonight. The best part of your post is that I now understand in-app purchases. I actually have done one of those, but not for a game. Mine was to upgrade my radar site to “pro.” That doesn’t mean that I’m a pro, it means that I get to see real-time lightning strikes, and tilt the radar in different ways. I also get to watch real pros post screen-shots from it, which isn’t a bad way to learn what the thing can do.


  2. As I don’t generally play games (though I do have a well used Patience aka Solitaire app on my phone for sleepless nights), I know nothing about the cost of games apps. However, I do have a compalint about the pricing of other apps, such as text editors. Many authors have followed the pernicious trend of the likes of Microsoft and Adobe in not selling their products outright but demanding a yearly or monthly fee. Supposedly, this pays for maintenance and ongoing development but it bars many of us from ever choosing those apps, or even from trying them to see whether they would suit us.

    If you are interested in words, then I recommend that you take a look at this site: . It also has a blog posting answers to readers’ queries (just add the word “blog” to the end of the URL). It is American but, I’m glad to say, not too noticeably so, and it deals with the British English aspects of the words it discusses. I emailed them about a topic (comments are disabled, unfortunately) and received a reply pretty quickly. I have added the blog’s URL to the blogroll of my new blog for the delectation of my readers.

    P.S. For various reasons, I have not been very active online, socially speaking, in recent months. However, I have followed, without commenting, your various stories of health upsets. I hope that you have recovered from these and are restored to something like good health and that you will remain so.


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