The main reason why everything is so expensive in GTA Online is due to powercreep.
Video games evolve over time. This statement is especially true for online games that receive constant updates. The GTA Online of 2021 is entirely different from how the game was back in 2013. It's practically a night and day difference, and it's worth noting that powercreep swings both ways.
Powercreep is essentially a term in a video game where new content tends to outclass old content in some regard. In today's topic of discussion, it refers to how most items have gotten more expensive in GTA Online over the years. Hence, everything seems expensive to a newer player.
Why is everything so expensive in GTA Online? Powercreep explained
Different GTA Online players have differing opinions on what constitutes "expensive." To a new player, everything seems out of reach. They might do a few Contact Missions and earn a few thousand dollars. However, they'll see that most properties and vehicles cost well over a million dollars.
In that sense, everything seems unobtainable due to how expensive it is. Fortunately, everything only seems costly at first glance. While the general prices of items have gone up, so too have the rewards.
Expensive items in GTA Online
It's worth noting that GTA Online players don't have to buy everything in the game. While several dozen vehicles cost millions of dollars, players aren't required to buy all of them. Instead, choosing to save money will help make some players perceive everything as unnecessarily expensive.
Of course, items didn't always cost millions of dollars back then. When GTA Online first launched, several vehicles were priced at around $100,000. The Mule Custom, the most recent car in GTA Online that costs less than $100,000, came out in the After Hours update.
That's not even getting to clothing. In the modern version of GTA Online, some clothing can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Naturally, that wasn't the case when GTA Online first came out.
More moneymakers than ever
Items didn't become expensive for no reason. If prices remained roughly the same since the game came out, then players could buy everything effortlessly with modern missions. Just as everything has become more expensive, so too has the player's ability to pay for it.
It's easy to compare the Cayo Perico Heist to the initial batch of heists. The former can be done solo (meaning that it isn't limited to playing with random players). It also gives a far higher payout compared to those old heists.
Naturally, this means that Rockstar Games has introduced more ways for players to spend all of this money. New players may feel ripped off, but GTA Online is nearly eight years old. What might seem expensive to a beginner is pocket change to a veteran.
Items will continue to be expensive over time
It's improbable for new items to become cheaper over time. Instead, GTA Online will continue to introduce expensive items as the moneymakers are already available. If the new objects become too costly, then Rockstar Games will likely introduce a new way to profit.