That's just splitting hairs. They made the statement that you would not have to pay for game altering items to easy fears of people being forced to pay to experience the full game. Yet at start up the situation was just that. That you were buying these items outside the C-store does matter much. And led me to believe those were going to be the type of things we'd see in the store from time to time.
And to say gimmicks are not related to the store and don't matter means you wouldn't have a problem if they started giving the Excelsior refit away with new subscriptions. Or worse new items with larger effects you can't even get in the store for new subs.
...so your entire argument here, is that since it seemed dishonest to you from the start, nobody should be complaining?
And, actually, they were always very careful to talk about the accessibility of potential C-store items and not other promotions.