On Tuesday, 15th January, the German consortium DEAL and Wiley announced the signing of a new contract. This was immediately hailed as groundbreaking and transformative. Indeed, this is the first deal of its kind, aiming to foster the large-scale adoption of open access in journal publishing. Yet, details of the contract reveal that the transformative nature of this new big deal may come at a high cost: for the forthcoming period of three years, the scenario will be gradual hybrid instead of revolutionary gold open access. This may result in a costly pay to publish development. Updated article.