When Play Money Becomes Real

Even in a virtual society, the rich people still use money to get an advantage, and get 'higher' than through normal 'work.' Is this wrong or simply the nature of the beast? Looks like capitalism at work, the hardcore game players get money, a company profits as a middle-man, the rich people avoid hours of play to get to the exciting higher levels. The only 'offended' people are the little people, I guess, who 'have' to slog their way through all of the lwoer levels first. Makes it that much more precious when they get to the higher levels themselves. Isn't there a term for the people who buy their way higher?

I heard that Marvel was interested in setting up an Everquest-type of game system online. Did anything ever come of that? I can imagine somebody buying Thor's virtual hammer on Ebay...