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Spyra

Aeria: Product Manager
Spyra
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PostedOct 08, 2012 9:44 pm

A Letter from Spyra

Want to take this opportunity to clear up some concerns players are having...
Over the past few days, there has been some confusion in game in regards to some recent actions taken by our team. We've noticed players with a lot of questions about what the GMs look for when it comes to moving in-game gold and buying/selling in-game items before action is taken against an account. I would like to take a moment to go over some important matters and hope this will resolve any concerns you may have.

I would like to bring to light a fact, probably known by most players: The playerbase on Eden Eternal collectively moves millions of gold around every day, and thousands of gold and item transactions are done by players all the time. With this said, it is impossible for the GM team to monitor every single transaction! This is where we need to be creative in where to start, and we always use Real Money Transactions as a starting point.

I would like to make it very clear that the GMs do not blindly ban every single character that comes into contact with suspicious accounts. Unfortunately, I cannot share the procedures used by the team when they investigate accounts, but what I can tell everyone is that we review all accounts and activities separately. When searching for suspicious activities, we will thoroughly check several different pieces of information in our logs before taking any action. With that said, please allow me to address a few myths that have been going around.

Myth: “You can get banned for sending any amount of gold.”
That’s silly! There are single players that move more than 50k Gold from their main character to a mule account or to their friends every day. Why would we ban players for this?

Myth: “You will get banned for buying items sold by Gold Sellers on the Auction House.”
We will not ban or question players for buying and selling stuff using the Auction House. When making a purchase on the Auction House, one does not know who they are buying the item from, and this we already know.

EE’s GMs have been actively fighting Gold Sellers every day, and if you think you’ve been wrongfully banned, please send us a ticket and we’ll individually review your account and reply to you. For your convenience, here is the link to submit a support ticket.

I have had players that have asked me why buying gold is bad for Eden Eternal. Since we’re on this topic, please allow me to share with you some of the negative effects buying gold from Gold Sellers have on not only Eden Eternal, but on almost all MMOs.

So why is this bad? The guy buying the gold is not hurting anyone but himself by risking a ban for breaking TOS, right? Well, as we have seen, he is hurting everyone in the game who does not buy gold by reducing their gold buying power. You must now pay 80 gold for an Eden Crystal instead of the 60 gold it might have been. The symbol’s value is the same, but the gold it takes to buy it has been reduced in value. The gold buyer is stealing from everyone else in the game. He is not stealing their gold, but he is stealing their gold value.

While the in-game economy is an important part of the picture, there is the side of the gold selling/buying “business” where actual gold, not just value, is stolen from other players. Did you know that most Gold Sellers get their gold from compromised accounts? Accounts that belong to comrades that you adventured with, had their accounts stolen with items and gold removed. Some of us can relate and even heard of this from our friends in-game. Buying gold will only encourage the Gold Sellers to continue doing this.

I get so many players asking me why we can’t just offer gold on our Web Mall in exchange for AP. The main issue with buying in game gold with out game resources, like money, is that it causes inflation in game. This means that the money in game becomes more plentiful, and thus is worth less. Every gold piece can buy fewer and fewer items in game as inflation increases. This will make the game less enjoyable in the long run, and also make it impossible for new players to enjoy the game without feeling like they must spend AP to do so. Keep in mind that this isn’t the same as buying items and selling them in-game for gold. Since there are only a “semi-“fixed number of gold in-game, over inflating an item does not causes inflation on the gold, but just drop the prices on the items. However, this can be another discussion altogether.

Please note: this topic will remain unlocked for now and we would like it to remain that way. Any comments off-topic or disruptive to discussion of this topic will be removed. If you have any questions or feedback on a ban related to this topic, please send them here.
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Extra0rdinary

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PostedOct 08, 2012 11:49 pm
Thank you for finally shining light on this situation for those who have not heard the news, Spyra.

This topic is also very helpful for those who frequent the SB and someone comes in and asks about the recent bans related to this. With a quick link to this thread will sum up any answers they may have.

So thank you for taking the time for this Spyra. <3

LoveLovey

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PostedOct 08, 2012 11:54 pm
Thank you for taking the time to explain this. Unfortunately, some people only see the cheap price and not think about where that item came from. If you've ever had a friend or knew someone that was hacked, there's a chance that the cheap items/gold you purchased were stolen from them. And if not, you're supporting the very people that steal from players like them every day. It's a vicious cycle.


[ Aquamarine - Tranquillus - Deity ]

Respect existence or expect resistance.

Mocarze

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PostedOct 09, 2012 12:47 am
First of all, thank you, this was necessary!

Second of all, though, I'd like to give some feedback. This thread does not address a major concern from a majority of the player base, which is the decision-making that has occurred by the GM team.

Banning an almost incredulous amount of players, regardless of reason and justification, was of course going to yield a strong reaction from the player base. Unless the extreme action that had taken place was exceptionally necessary at that exact point, how come the bans occurred on a Saturday, when the team knew they would not have much free time to answer tickets?

What resulted from this was a scared, annoyed, frustrated, and confused playerbase. Players had been notified they were banned for breaking the ToS, and they felt unjustifiably banned. Gamesages were responsible for holding the entirety of the community together under unusual circumstances that they had not been prepared for, nor were suitably equipped with the resources to do so. It placed an intense strain on the gamesage team, and throughout it caused issues and rifts between not only the players and the gamesages, but between the Gamesages and GMs, and even the Gamesages themselves.

I am sure everyone appreciates their case being reevaluated personally. Despite this, the community as a whole suffered a big hit from the actions taken, and the lack of communication they had with the GM team. Removing a sizeable chunk of players from a similar demographic changed gameplay enormously, and in all honesty, most of the players that were never touched by a ban, players like myself, feared for our game, our community, our guilds, and our friends. We were scared the game was dying, and we knew of no one that had received contact from any GM.


This message is great, but it has come too late. Opinions on Aeria as a company have changed, and completely legitimate players have quit the game. To lessen the strain on all parts of the community, quicker and better steps must be taken, if only to ensure future progress.

Awildrooster

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PostedOct 09, 2012 1:26 am
Since my last post was deleted ill ask something else instead, hopefully this wont be deleted also. Are you guys going to take steps in the future to make sure something like this doesnt happen again? Also it would be nice if you sent some of the Logs to the people in question who got banned showing the activity you guys clam where they got their illegal gold.

LoveLovey

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PostedOct 09, 2012 2:32 am   Last edited by LoveLovey on Oct 09, 2012 3:11 am. Edited 1 time in total
Question withdrawn.

Spyra

Aeria: Product Manager
Spyra
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PostedOct 09, 2012 3:01 am   Last edited by Spyra on Oct 09, 2012 4:53 am. Edited 1 time in total
Mocarze wrote:
Despite this, the community as a whole suffered a big hit from the actions taken, and the lack of communication they had with the GM team. Removing a sizeable chunk of players from a similar demographic changed gameplay enormously, and in all honesty, most of the players that were never touched by a ban, players like myself, feared for our game, our community, our guilds, and our friends.  


Mocarze, these are valid concerns and we all agree that a lack in communication between all parties are never healthy. However, I think the issue here is not the lack of communications but unfortunately, a lack in GM present last weekend when the water started to boil. I still stand by our procedures when it comes to investigating individual account, but I do agree that we'll need to show a strong present at the right time when needed.

I agree with you that our GS did take a lot of heat over the weekend, more than usual, and it always sadden me to see such negative disposition from players toward them. I want to use this opportunity to say that there are really no words to justify my gratitude I have to all of them. We'll take action so that our GS will not have to provide support alone.



Awildrooster wrote:
Are you guys going to take steps in the future to make sure something like this doesnt happen again? Also it would be nice if you sent some of the Logs to the people in question who got banned showing the activity you guys clam where they got their illegal gold.  


Awildrooster, we are always continuing to improve our internal workflow so that we can provide the best quality of service to all our players all the time. If you are referring to your account with, "to make sure something like this doesn't happen again", then please send in a ticket so we can update you on the status of your account and help you answer any questions you may have surrounding your account. While we cannot share actual logs data to players, we'll still do our best to provide you with as much details as possible regarding any suspicious activities. Again, every situation is different and our team does look at all cases on an individual bases. Please send in a ticket here.


LoveLovey wrote:
Question withdrawn.  


Answer withdrawn. (Sorry, can't help it)

rinsha

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PostedOct 09, 2012 3:51 am
this isnt the first time something like this has happened on an aeria game and i doubt it will be the last
at least share some info on how u make sure ur banning the right people or give some evidence for ur reasoning otherwise it may seem ur essentially going "lets look like we are doing something by banning this person and that one"

while im sure most are thankful for this message i doubt it does much to reassure many of the frustrated people who have no clue whats happening or why they got banned

thankies for leaving this open to discussion and i hope to see more info soon

LoveLovey

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PostedOct 09, 2012 4:13 am
rinsha wrote:
this isnt the first time something like this has happened on an aeria game and i doubt it will be the last
at least share some info on how u make sure ur banning the right people or give some evidence for ur reasoning otherwise it may seem ur essentially going "lets look like we are doing something by banning this person and that one"

while im sure most are thankful for this message i doubt it does much to reassure many of the frustrated people who have no clue whats happening or why they got banned

thankies for leaving this open to discussion and i hope to see more info soon  
What would they accomplish by banning innocent people for the sole purpose of making it seem like they "are doing something"? That would be detrimental to the game and would only make things harder for them.

Naturally Aeria can't disclose too much information on their methods. If they do, what stops the gold sellers from adapting to this new found information in an attempt to dodge Aeria? There's only so much information they can share.
As for evidence, I believe Spyra already stated that those who had accounts banned were more than able to send in a ticket and the GMs would do their best to explain.


[ Aquamarine - Tranquillus - Deity ]

Respect existence or expect resistance.

Spyra

Aeria: Product Manager
Spyra
Joined
09 Apr 2008
Posts
217
Location
Bay Area - CA - United States
PostedOct 09, 2012 4:18 am
rinsha wrote:
this isnt the first time something like this has happened on an aeria game and i doubt it will be the last  


You're right, this is not the first time we banned players for buying gold, nor will it be the last time. All matters such as these are individually reviewed and resolved between the players and the support staff. Please do not make accusation like "lets look like we are doing something by banning this person" without evidence.
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