The day foretold (repeatedly) in the Prophecy has finally arrived. Diablo III's real money auction house is here and - connection requirements aside - completely optional, so you can peruse its user-supplied wares right this second if you're a resident of the giant bald eagle and failing business reservation that is my country of origin. Europe and other territories, meanwhile, will gain access in "the near future," as Blizzard's trying not to send any server farms into geosynchronous orbit this time around.
Oh, and if you're in the correct region, you'll still need an Authenticator - though, fair warning, I still have my reservations about that allegedly hacker-proof solution.
Admittedly, waging war against evil incarnate does seem like a slightly roundabout way of getting the shiny pair of shoes that's been haunting your dreams, so perhaps - for some of you - there's something to this whole real money auction house thing. Will it be worth the time-consuming, connection-killing price of admission? The jury's still out.
But, if you've got all your information locked up tight and have a solid grasp on how the whole thing works (there are, for instance, multiple 15 percent transaction fees involved), feel free to stroll down the RMAH's near-infinite aisles. Apparently, a few particularly bold souls are already listing items at a minimum of $200. Something (I'd like to think it's my faith in humanity) tells me that trend won't last.
Who knows, though? This is new territory for Blizzard, and I imagine we'll have a far better idea of where it's headed in a few weeks. It's a bit exciting, if I'm being honest. So then, who's planning to trade their hard-earned cash for Blizzard Bucks, and - more importantly - why?