The Lord of the Rings Online is apparently adding a level boosting option that will allow players to spend Turbine Cash to jump to level 50.
In an MMORPG, your level is arguably everything. That character you spent hours customizing visually? They're merely a vessel for your character's stats, skills and level. The process of gaining levels, in turn, is arguably at the very center of the MMORPG experience. If shooters need bullets, RPGs arguably need levels to delineate both a character's progress and power. If you trivialize the leveling process, you run the risk of ruining what makes your game a game.
All this being said, some apparently verified rumors have revealed that Turbine, the developer behind The Lord of the Rings Online, will be instituting a level boosting mechanic that will allow players to spend Turbine Points to raise their level up to 50. Turbine Points are, of course, the game's real-money currency. The addition of the feature is one that, according to a Turbine representative has "been requested repeatedly since going free-to-play." Turbine, in turn, is "currently testing" a version of it.
On the one hand, we can see why some players might want to jump levels more quickly, especially with the Helm's Deep expansion due out shortly and set to add in more high level content. That said, there's just about the whole thing that rubs us the wrong way. We just can't help but wonder what the point of leveling up is if you can just pay your way to a higher level.