Math, Science, and Common Sense for Black Friday

I know…I know…you are going to come up with a million reasons to justify spending donuts and cash on Black Friday.  It’s just the way people have been trained these days in the United States, and yes…it is creeping into Europe as well.

But, I will say this once NOT let your impulses get the best of you.  At best, this is gambling. At worst, it is a complete money grab by EA. (Sorry John)

Let’s take a look at the two primary “dopamine tools” that EA employs here.

Most of what follows has to do with those who are considering dropping REAL CASH for Black Friday.  Let’s put this into perspective really quickly… we’re talking about $49.99 here. What could you get in the REAL world with $50.  During the sales this weekend…a TON of stuff (like 5 pairs of jeans at Old Navy).

So…let’s break down why you think you WANT to drop $50…and why you should take a pause.

1. Instant gratification…driven by a boost of dopamine to the brain…which helps create addiction.  No surprises here. The entire online gaming industry is built on this, and phone addiction is as common as the excuses we use to explain it. But…take a look back over the past year, and ask yourself one questions.  Once you have done the grinding to get something (perhaps the huge number of donuts needed to get everything offered), do you get anything out of it?  Do you even remember the last 10 items you bought for TSTO…without looking?

Nope. You buy it. You move on. And except for having to clear the task from a character, the “satisfaction zone” for a character is getting shorter and shorter.  So…before you think you need EVERYTHING… think again. You don’t.

1b. – At best, this sucks in the gamblers that think they are getting a deal by winning…even if it takes hundreds of donuts to get something that will likely show up later in a Vault offering. Hundreds…for a bauble.  Even for donut farmers…you have to place a value on your TIME.

2.  Read the above reality check, and then…add to this that you are being asked to drop at LEAST $50 to get a donut factory that makes 6 donuts a day.  Even if you are placing value on the donuts in real terms…they are worth between .16 each (if you buy a dozen) and .04 each (if you buy a boatload).  Which means you will have to do “hard time” of as much as 208 days, before you recoup your expenditure!   SERIOUSLY???  THIS IS A GOOD DEAL???

I am not going to call out those who will work hard to justify this ridiculous expense.  You cannot be helped.

But, I will point out that EA is making every Black Friday more punitive than than the last…and that is is a rip-off of epic proportions.

More so…  It is ALWAYS a huge “Regret-Fest” when the Christmas update hits…and we hear tons and tons of players whining that they “wish they had saved their money for this event, instead of blowing it on useless stuff on Black Friday.

Now…if you are a DONUT FARMER…much of what I have written is moot. You are playing with “House Money” and all you have squandered is the time spent to grind the donuts.  And yes…I confess to being elated when I got Kamp Krusty for 20 donuts on my first spin….and Herb Powell on my 2nd.  But, then I walked away!  I didn’t want anything else.  Vegas hates me. That’s why. I spend what I can afford…have my fun…and leave…especially if I am winning. 

Here’s the thing… if you passed on items during the events…there was likely a reason.  After years and years of playing, I have LOADS of items that I have not bought…and never will. They show up every Black Friday…and I ignore them.

Show some common sense… rEAlly!

Most of this isn’t worth your time…and certainly not your money!

OH……and a LOT of you are asking (once again) where to find info on donut farming.  Do a SEARCH in the Search box on this site…
Or Follow this link…



As I predicted, people are stumbling over themselves to justify the $50 expenditure.

For the record…. you need to understand that this is a marketing test by EA. They are testing the waters to see how far we will go, before we push back.

I Don’t Mind Giving Money to EA!!   What I do mind…is that for the same kind of “lame-ish” items…they have gone from $10, to $20 to $50…in very short order.

If you continue to support this method…they will ultimately keep jacking it up to $100 or more. Mark my words… I’ve been in marketing my entire adult life, and they are “pushing to find the point of pricing resistance.” 

If you want to be part of the problem…go ahead. Don’t resist.  For me…I vote NO!  Not worth it…at all. 208 days minimum to recoup the cost…that’s just silly.

186 responses to “Math, Science, and Common Sense for Black Friday

  1. I see your point, but just for the math thing: Based on the offer of 2400 sprinkles for 100$, 50$ are worth 1200 sprinkles. You get 900 sprinkles for it, leaving just 300 to be earned to “recoup the cost” . You additionally get 23 tokens, worth 12 sprinkles each, making it another 276 sprinkles. So at the end there are just 24 sprinkles missing, which you will get in only 4 days from the factory. And just 6 more sprinkles on top any following day, just for free. Not nearly as bad as the 208 days you are stating.

    If, instead and like suggested, you spend money in small portions (which will make each sprinkle worth 0.166), the 1176 sprinkles you get above, will be worth 212.666$. So in fact you save 162.666$!

    Just another step ahead, using tokens on the golden box, makes each token worth at least 170 sprinkles, which makes 4810 virtual sprinkles (or in fact virtual virtual sprinkles). That are 801.666$ based on the price for a dozen. So you save even more, you save the unbelievable amount of 751.666$!!

    Done with math, you may agree with me, that you can calculate many things, if you just use the numbers. So I wouldn’t base my argument on just that.

    On the other hand, I don’t mind giving money to EA, too – I play each day for a long time. But I didn’t give money so far, as those 12 sprinkles you get for a small amount of money didn’t seem worth for me. This one looks much better. So instead of spending 2$ for 25 times, I may spend 50$ just at once now. And if they place another offer over 100$ next year, I’m just free to decide if I take it or not. No compulsion to walk on that street just because I did one step on it. It’s a game, nothing more.

    And when talking about gambling: Don’t you think, that farming has it’s own, special impact on the sprinkle-inflation?

  2. Quick question, apologies if this has been answered but I can’t find it. I want to use my free token to open the gold box, but my game is also offering me 12 donuts for that gold token. If I purchase these 12 donuts, will I get a further token as part of the Black Friday questline? Will I essentially get 12 donuts for free if I do this?

    • No, you only get a token if you purchase donuts with real world money, US dollars, Canadian loonies and toonies, British pounds, etc.

    • First use your tokens on the gold mystery box. Then whatever is left over, the game gives the option to trade for donuts so you can get things from other boxes. Trading the token for donuts will not give further tokens. The questline is EA’s way of nudging you to spend money on donuts. The game did give one free token to kick off Black Friday. The only other way to get tokens is to purchase donuts. Purchasing donuts comes with bonus tokens and counts towards the questline which also gives tokens. So EA is essentially offering some bonus donuts in exchange for money.

  3. The fact that it makes Patric righteously indignant is all I need “to justify this ridiculous expense.”

    900 donuts you don’t have to grind. Plus 33 tokens x 12 donuts = 396 bonus donuts. Plus the factory makes 2000+ donuts per year.

    I didn’t spend 300 donuts on “Dante Calabresi Sr and Jr” originally, so I had 300 donuts to spend on 6 items from their mystery box.

    “I Don’t Mind Giving Money to EA!!” lol

  4. Hi everyone,
    I am really angry with EA because I have payed for donuts and I have not receive them, does anyone know how to solve it??
    Thanks in advance

  5. I agree with all your arguments… and I caved…

    For the things I really wanted, they were in the gold box as well and I started late enough that the other boxes just had really lousy odds (Other than the creature box, I think the best odds I had were 1 in 12 for any specific item)… so I caved, and with the tokens finally have Sherri and Terri and a couple of others I’ve been waffling about for a while… sold 9 of the tokens for donuts, bought the whale from the vault and now my multiplier is finally above 900% and I have 900+ donuts going into the Chrismahanakwanzaka/Holidy update… not interested enough in anything left in any of the other boxes to be tempted further.

    I know I’m feeding into EAs plan, and I hate myself for it, but numerically it just worked out better this time and, like I said, I haven’t paid them probably since last Christmas, so… hopefully I’ll sleep well tonight even though I’m helping out our corporate overlords 🤪

    • *in a kodos and kang voice*

      Hail hail corporate overlords of the Electronic Arts. Tell us how much money you want today. We live to serve. Hail hail.

  6. I just do $20 around my birthday every year and that’s it. However, I like the token deal and used the tokens to get some of the things in the gold mystery box I was saving up for anyway! Haven’t spent all the donuts yet, and that’s ok with me.

  7. Thank you. I was trying to justify the purchase, I play the game all the time and I’m down with supporting companies who’s products I use.

    But it’s too much and I know it. And after I decided not to, I got an eairly Black Friday notification for an actual product I really wanted in a limited edition fun color and it was on sale for $49. So no matter how much I like the look of the factory and that I tend towards being a compleationist, I’m not doing it.

    Thanks for being the voice of reason, I needed it and I’ll be much happier in the long run with what I bought instead of pixels. 🙂

  8. Tank you. From the bottom of my heart thank you. I really needed to read this right now, because I was just hearing the devil on my shoulder whispering about giving myself an early Christmas present.

  9. Hypothetical question. Starting right now Nov 21 2018
    If every single person (or say 60-70%) of players started hardcore Donut Farming. Like the current small percentage. Everybody pulling in hundreds of donuts monthly via KEM and Bloodmobiles

    How long would would this EA keep this game running.? 2020 tops?

  10. Quick question..if I purchase the store of donuts ($50) can I use the tokens that come with the purchase to buy the 12 donuts for tokens over and over? Or is it a onetime buy for 1 token/12 donuts or can I buy 5 (5 tokens/60 donuts total?

  11. Lost my sense and spent all my Donuts, 1300 sprinkles spent and it was fun, now to blow my 90million on rat trucks lol

  12. 150 days and the Lard Lad Factory paid itself

  13. David Billington

    I had about 7500 sprinkles at the start of the day and have probably burned through nearly 1000. I’ve picked up a fair few things I fancied and got a fair few things I didn’t. Could be a few more purchases to be had but I do make 36 donuts each time I put my 96 KEMs on. I did get Kamp Krusty and the Cool Brown House plus loads of skins. I have cleared out a lot of bonus % earners from the sea that made my game look scruffy but I’m sure I will try and rearrange some of it looking pretty. As for spending real cash – I did that for a while years ago having ploughed in at least £200 so I won’t be getting the Lard Lad Factory which I really wanted not for the donuts but for the building.

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