“Free-to-play” used to mean just that, but now it seems that it's becoming “Remortgage-to-play”. First, DarkOrbit releases a $1,000 item and sells 2,000 of them. Now EA's Need for Speed World sells a $100 car, according to GameSpot .
The pricey car in question is a Koenigsegg CCX “Elite” Edition. It heads up Need for Speed World's “Premium Elite” collection, which is targeted exclusively at people with more money than sense. The car is reduced to "just" $75 at the moment, but even for that price you could pick up Race On ($19) and GRID ($15) on Steam - both of which feature the Koenigsegg CCX - and still have $41 left over to buy a cheapo steering wheel.
On the whole the free-to-play model does seem to be working, but these costly items make it look like developers and publishers are taking advantage of an audience willing to pay exorbitant amounts for fairly rudimentary power-ups. A report in the Daily Mail is sure to follow shortly.