The Bad & The Ugly Pt 3: The Gacha Market

The gacha arcade community is one of the strongest communities in Second Life. From gacha resale markets, gacha arcade events, gacha bloggers and facebook groups dedicated to the market. However, in recent and past days, there have been very strong opinions regarding the community from both gacha players, non players, and gacha sellers.

What is gacha? Gacha has been around for decades, originating from Japan’s “Gashapon”, a kind of plastic eggshell toy that originated in Japan. They can also be compared to gum ball machines, crane claw machines, and any gambling game of chance where one pays a fixed price in order to obtain an uncommon prize. Second Life’s gacha market has expanded from clothing & accessories, furniture, hair, trinkets, toys and more where people spend thousands in order to obtain rare items.

Some of the most popularly mentioned brands with gacha machines are brands such as Blueberry, Jian, Astralia, Truth, Dead Dollz, and many more.

Gacha resale markets exist for those to resell repeat prizes, or full sets in order to gain profit. Someone at a gacha market may resell their common items, uncommons, full ensembles and rares to others at a larger (or lower) price, which helps the buyer expand their collections. However, there are some gacha sellers that are not happy about gacha resale and have voiced their opinions about it.

There are some gacha sellers who strictly advise against their gacha items being resold, and some sellers are going to the length of making their gacha items no transfer in permissions, avoiding the resale of their products. This has caused an uproar in the gacha community, who spend their hard earned lindens on the sellers gachas in order to obtain their rares.

We conducted a study at GTS News on opinions regarding gachas and some of the concerns regarding the community. We found that 32% of our respondents were frequent players, 37% were casual players, and 27% of our respondents use to play gacha, but do not anymore. Why could this be?

Our study on price, we conducted that the most a seller has sold a single gacha item straight from the machine can be as expensive as between $500L to $1000L, while other companies set a fixed price as little as $25L to $100L. We also conducted that the most voiced reason that people are steered away from gachas is the price and the unfairness of winning an uncommon prize. 35% of our respondents also thought the idea of gacha was a scam, and the same amount of respondents said that it’s a scam depending on the products being sold. Only 32% said they did not think it was a scam.

Our study conducted that 82% of gacha players believe it is unfair for gacha sellers to place their products no transfer permissions, while less than 17% either had no opinion or thought it was fair. However, 90% said that gacha sellers should allow their gacha products to be resold. The most voiced reason why this case is unfair was conducted that the lindens spent to obtain every product was too much, and that it would not be fair to disallow trading and selling. Another reason being that rares are too difficult to obtain. We spoke with an anonymous avatar who has gacha arcades at her location, and was driven to set her gacha items to no transfer, avoiding the resale of her gacha items, which dramatically reduced her gacha sales. We will call this gacha seller “Cassy”.

Reporter: What reason was it that you made your gacha items no transfer?

Cassy: I think it is unfair to us sellers that we spend so much time, money and effort on our products, all for someone to turn around and sell your product for a bigger price. On top of that, we are not even entitled to a cut [of the price], which should be against terms of service.

Reporter: Has this decision increased or decreased your gacha sales?

Cassy: I think those who really enjoy my products keep coming back to play. Not every gacha player gets gacha items for the sole purpose of reselling. However, my sales drop, but that has given me the idea of reducing costs, which should be fair.

Reporter: Why do you believe people resell their gachas?

Cassy: I think it might be because it’s a market. It’s like any other business. It’s in demand, people will invest into gachas knowing they can make more money on it, so they do it.

Cassy is one out of few gacha sellers who have resorted to changing the permissions on the gacha items, however, some other sellers have thought about it, or have at least made complaints about their gacha items being resold, but without formally changing the transfer permissions.

We spoke with a former gacha player Jenna Adder to get her opinions, who use to play gachas a lot, but no longer has any interest in them.

Reporter: For what reasons did you quit playing gacha arcades?

Jenna: I played a couple, although it can be a fun, I was always a bit suspicious of the number of times I had to play to get the one I wanted. The last draw for me came after I spent way too much to get a complete ensemble in the color I wanted. I got lots of items that I didn’t want. Gave almost all of them away and walked away broke and disappointed.

When speaking with Jenna about resale markets, or reselling gachas, she told us unlike other gacha players, she did not have experience with them.

We also asked Jenna what she thought about gacha sellers like Cassy and what she thought of gacha sellers who prevent people from reselling their gachas.

Jenna: Personally, I think by limiting your gacha items to no transfer, you are limiting sales and those people who are suckered into multiple tries will think again about buying items they cannot transfer. Having the ability to transfer the items you don’t want is a good incentive to keep trying for the things you do want.

Reporter: Some gacha sellers we’ve spoken to believe that it is not fair to have their gachas resold because of the time, effort, money and creativity put into their products. What do you think of this statement?

Jenna: I have no opinion really. It’s their choice, but as I mentioned previously, if I still played gachas I would not go after the ones with those types of options.

We asked Jenna what it would take for her to play gacha arcades again.

“Gacha’s are like putting money into a gumball machine with the goal to get the only red gumball out of 100. You’ll spend $20 before you get that gumball and you’ll never eat the other colors. You give them away or you trash them. At the end of the day, it’s a waste of money. I’d rather pay full price for the full set or the color I really want. We have all bought things we don’t need at one point, but who in their right mind will buy something they don’t want?”

At the end of the day, gacha is one of the richest markets within Second Life where thousands of people flock to events in order to dump thousands of lindens into these machines for a chance at their luck. Gacha resale markets are a secondary thriving market contrary to this movement, and with gacha sellers backing down, it’s only a matter of time before we see these yard sales disappear.

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