Is Torchlight Infinite pay-to-win?

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The discussion of pay-to-win in games is a topic that is a very controversial one, but one that comes up when a new game comes out that has microtransactions. One game that has been hit hard with this discussion is Torchlight Infinite. But is Torchlight Infinite pay-to-win?

Torchlight Infinite is a mobile and PC action RPG by Chinese developer XD that came out in late 2022. Most mobile games have a tendency to have pay-to-win elements to them, some far more egregious than others. But due to the genre of Torchlight Infinite, and it's release positioning in the year, this discussion is prevalent. We'll detail everything that can be bought in Torchlight Infinite and whether or not it constitutes as pay-to-win

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While you're here, why not check out some of our other Torchlight Infinite guides, such as our guide to Torchlight Infinite season 2, as well as one of our build guides such as for Youga, Spacetime Witness.

Is Torchlight Infinite pay-to-win?

When we talk about pay-to-win, what exactly are we talking about. The definition can vary depending on who you talk to. One definition is that if a player can pay money to gain power in any possibly way, including time skips, direct power purchase, or premium gacha spins for power gains, then it's pay-to-win.

Another definition is that if there's a way to pay for an insurmountable advantage over someone who doesn't pay, then that is pay-to-win. Another is if there are walls in the game that prohibit progression that are locked behind an insanely power number or time, but incentivize you to pay to take down that wall, then that could be considered pay-to-win as well.

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Regardless your definition, the question is regularly asked about Torchlight Infinite. It's a similar genre of game and came out very closely after another mobile action RPG that was widely considered to be egregious with it's pay-to-win elements. But is Torchlight Infinite truly pay-to-win?

What can you buy in Torchlight Infinite?

There's a handful of things that you can pay for in Torchlight Infinite. Primarily, you're going to be purchasing gems, or Primocryst as the premium currency. There are also direct purchase items as well. Many of the items that you'll be spending premium currency on are cosmetic in nature. Though, you also can spend Primocryst on quality of life features such as additional auction house tabs to sell more items. Primocryst cannot be used to purchase gear from the acution house.

Where the true "pay-to-win" element comes in is spending Primocryst to roll for Pact Spirits. Pact Spirits are your in game pets, and each one provides a minor power benefit to the player, and that power is capped. That being said, these Pact Spirits are not locked behind the premium currency. This translates to roughly to a 5-10% of a players overall power.

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There is a free currency, Jagged Primocryst, which also can be used to roll for Pact Spirits. The free currency is very generously given out through just playing the game, so acquiring Pact Spirits is widely accessible. With the small amount of power gained from Pact Spirits, players who spend money to get them don't have any meaningful advantage over free to play players. Additionally, Pact Spirits carry over from season to season so things will even out.

The other thing that you can spend money on is to unlock new Hero Traits the season that they come out. These are essentially new ways to play the characters in the game. These hero traits become obtainable for an in game currency, Hero Emblems, at a later date so it's eventually free to get these as well.

Based on what's here, you could consider Torchlight Infinite pay-to-win in the loosest sense of the term. The developers have done a very good job at making anything that can be purchased with real money in balance with the free to play route as much as possible.

As such, it's been generally advised by many of the community's most prominent members to not spend money on Pact Spirits, as the free to play options is significantly more sustainable. They do recommend buying the battle pass and potentially additional auction house tabs if you intend on selling a lot of items.

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Regardless of where you stand, we recommend giving the game a try for yourself and coming to your own conclusions through your own experience with the game. The game is incredibly fun, and so give it a shot!