Free video games that can be very costly

Don't Waste Your Money

If you have kids between ages 4 and 14, it probably seems like they always want a new video game.

Many times they’ll say, “but mom, it’s free!”

But a caution: That free game can end up very costly.

The days of just driving Mario Kart or playing Nintendo Wii are gone.

Today’s kids want live online games like Fortnite, and costs add up fast. 

Reuters calls Fortnite “free to play but expensive to love.”  That’s because of in-app purchases called microtransactions.

A new “skin” on your player: $10. A Battle Pass: another $10.

Soon, it’s hundreds of dollars billed to mom or dad’s credit card.

So, from the “doesn’t that stink” file, how gaming can cost a family thousands.

That gaming console: $400.

PlayStation Plus or Xbox Live: $50 a year.

Paid games like Madden football: $60 each.           

Now add microtransactions, and some families are paying $2,000 dollars a year.

Doesn’t that stink?

Forbes Magazine suggests getting the kids to cut back on their in-game purchases or requiring them to earn them.

Or try Microsoft’s Xbox Games Pass, with dozens of games for 10 dollars a month and no extra fees.

Bottom line: Do some research before you link a credit card or Pay Pal account to any free game, so you don’t waste your money.

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For more consumer news and money saving advice, go to www.dontwasteyourmoney.com.

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