I tried to raise this question in another thread but perhaps it deserves a place of its own.
This is addressed to those who object to the idea of what they call "pay 2 win."
People will always pay for things they want, if there is a way to do so.
It seems obvious that the only way to prevent people from "paying 2 win" would be to make trading impossible, e.g. make every item in Diablo 3 "bind on pickup." Otherwise, as long as items can be traded, people will find a way to pay for them, whether through Blizzard's agency or through a 3rd party.
So, for those who object to Blizzard's acceptance of this, would you in fact prefer a game where trading is not possible at all? Do you think Diablo 3 would be a better game, and Blizzard a better and more honorable company, if all items were bound instantly and permanently on pickup, and players were forced to complete the game with only the items that they themselves find?
Not a rhetorical question, I am inviting debate. People object to "pay 2 win" and the only alternative is this, a game with no trading whatsoever. So, I want to know if anyone would truly prefer that.
1. Farm Item X
2. Go to the RMAH and use your free listings to list Item X
3. Item X sells and you put the money in blizzards ewallet
4. You now have money to spend on the RMAH
In that scenario, you spend $0 to buy something from the RMAH. I don't see how it's pay to win, when you have the option of not spending any money at all and STILL being able to use the RMAH for buying.
What you describe is not pay to win, but pay to win is an idea people believe exists. Pay to win is opening your wallet to blizzard so that you get the items someone lists. People feel strongly that this takes away from the competition of the game, because others simply buy their way to the top.
Now I support the RMAH and don't think pay 2 win is a good concept. D3 is not a competitive game, it is a cooperative game, so the only benefit to be gained from buying items is either an advantage in arenas or an advantage in farming. If someone decides to spend money for great gear so they can farm and put stuff on the RMAH, then they are simply making an investment that may or may not pay off. They are also probably going to have less fun if they trivialize the game with their wallets than someone who doesn't, so there's no need to be upset with this choice they have. Be smart and don't buy items, play the game for fun, and if you want, try to make a little money on items that you don't need. That sounds like a good deal to me.
Pay to win in the usually means, "Pay the developer for some item that you can only get if you pay real money for it" (and said item provides an in-game advantage. Vanity items don't).
Check out World of Tanks for an example of this. You can buy ammo in that game that is way better than the stuff you can get without paying. There is no other way to aquire that super ammo and it provides a massive advantage (does damage with any given tank equivilant to a tank that's a couple of tiers better).
I actually liked playing the World of Tanks beta but I stopped as soon as it went to a release version due to the pay to win system.
Diablo 3 you can get anything just by playing the game.