Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Massive Bank Fraud In EVE Online

Soulskill posted about 5 years ago | from the virtual-madoff dept.

The Almighty Buck 138

djconrad was one of several readers to point out the latest major scandal in EVE Online, the space MMO notable for its large, player-driven economy and the entertaining stories it often generates. A player named Ricdic, chairman of a large in-game bank, decided to embezzle roughly 200 billion ISK (the game's currency). Ricdic exchanged the ISK for about $5,000 to pay off real-life debts. Massively has an in-depth write-up about how the theft affects the game and its players. Since the scandal became public, there's been a run on the virtual bank, and its executives are doing what they can to reassure people that it will continue to exist. Ricdic was banned, not for the embezzlement, but for trading 200 billion ISK for real currency, which is forbidden by EVE's EULA.

cancel ×

138 comments

Slow news day? (3, Insightful)

zergl (841491) | about 5 years ago | (#28577309)

It happened early June already [scrapheap-challenge.com] , though it apparently took quite a while for it to propagate to the mainstream news.

Re:Slow news day? (1, Interesting)

Panzor (1372841) | about 5 years ago | (#28577325)

Then why didn't you submit it then?

Re:Slow news day? (5, Insightful)

zergl (841491) | about 5 years ago | (#28577365)

Because for EVE veterans a scam hardly qualifies as "news". ;)

Re:Slow news day? (4, Insightful)

blankinthefill (665181) | about 5 years ago | (#28577327)

Either way, I don't know why this is surprising except for one fact: That it didn't happen much, much sooner. That's what happens when there's no real world consequences for your behavior (or you think you can avoid them).

Re:Slow news day? (4, Interesting)

zergl (841491) | about 5 years ago | (#28577751)

Either way, I don't know why this is surprising except for one fact: That it didn't happen much, much sooner. That's what happens when there's no real world consequences for your behavior (or you think you can avoid them).

That's not surprising. It happened before and it will happen again.
EVE has a very rich history of large scale scams, reaching from investment scams like this one to long-planned infiltrations of alliances like the infamous heist [klaki.net] by GHSC (who incidentally ripped assets to the tune of 200ish billion ISK off one of the major alliances again just recently [eveonline.com] ).

The only "surprising" and novel bit about this story is that he apparently/supposedly didn't do it for the e-fame or e-gain, but for RMTing the scammed ISK because of real life troubles, which was the reason for his subsequent banning.

Re:Slow news day? (0)

mpe (36238) | about 5 years ago | (#28579093)

The only "surprising" and novel bit about this story is that he apparently/supposedly didn't do it for the e-fame or e-gain, but for RMTing the scammed ISK because of real life troubles, which was the reason for his subsequent banning.

The basic problem is that he was able to convert the in game currency into a real world currency. Maybe they need to find out exactly how he did this.

Re:Slow news day? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28579749)

" I'll give you $5000 for 200 billion ISK "

Re:Slow news day? (4, Interesting)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 5 years ago | (#28577779)

I don't know why this is surprising except for one fact: That it didn't happen much, much sooner.

Because people are inherently honest. Dishonesty is an abnormality. Even in this case, it took $5,000 in immediate real life needs for this person to cause harm in a video game to a fictional economy, and the only punishment is that a few ones and zeroes got flipped around so they didn't like a few other ones and zeroes anymore. It's this very fact that pisses game theorists off to no end -- agents in the system continue to act completely irrationally (ie, to trust) when the rules clearly indicate every advantage for the "cheater" and next to no consequences.

Trust is inherently illogical and irrational and yet it works. Society is built on networks of trust -- most of our institutions and infrastructure that allow life to go on the way it does right now depends on the vast majority of people playing by the rules. Rules which, for the most part, are arbitrary. There are very few rules that are "naturally derived" -- For example, not murdering people is a naturally derived rule because we can't exactly make going extinct legal. O.o Traffic laws are, for the most part, arbitrary -- red means stop, green means go, drive on the left (or right), etc. But we'd never be able to use the shared public resource (the highway) without them.

Human beings are social creatures. In order to survive, we have to trust one another. Every social organizational structure is derived from this basic concept -- it simply varies in how we trust, to what degree, and to whom.

Re:Slow news day? (4, Insightful)

jollyreaper (513215) | about 5 years ago | (#28577957)

Trust is inherently illogical and irrational and yet it works. Society is built on networks of trust -- most of our institutions and infrastructure that allow life to go on the way it does right now depends on the vast majority of people playing by the rules. Rules which, for the most part, are arbitrary. There are very few rules that are "naturally derived" -- For example, not murdering people is a naturally derived rule because we can't exactly make going extinct legal. O.o Traffic laws are, for the most part, arbitrary -- red means stop, green means go, drive on the left (or right), etc. But we'd never be able to use the shared public resource (the highway) without them.

Human beings are social creatures. In order to survive, we have to trust one another. Every social organizational structure is derived from this basic concept -- it simply varies in how we trust, to what degree, and to whom.

If you think about it from an evolutionary point of view, trust is an excellent adaptation for a social species. Being trusting is the sort of thing that might not work so well for a given individual but works out for the species in the long run. It's like cuteness. What's the evolutionary purpose of finding creatures with infantile features and proportions cute? Easy: it's so we don't murder our young. If those little darlings didn't worm their way into our hearts at first sight, it's for damn sure they wouldn't make it through the third night of random crying, feeding, and diaper changes.

Of course, it's always possible to push the boundaries of society to the point where people stop trusting. We're in danger of this very thing right now. I mean shit, there's a lot of trust involved in working for two weeks with the understanding that there will be a paycheck on payday! I've seen smaller companies so fucked up that the boss has to pay on a weekly, sometimes daily schedule because people don't trust him. We're seeing that in the economy at large as the expectations of the common citizen have become more and more cynical through time. Republicans exist to fuck the poor to death. Democrats exist to pretend to be an alternative to getting fucked to death and while they're taking no direct part in the rape, they're standing in the corner stroking their puds while the Republicans go to town.

Once that social contract is broken, all the scotch tape in the world won't put it back together again.

Re:Slow news day? (3, Insightful)

plasmidmap (1435389) | about 5 years ago | (#28579787)

If you think about it from an evolutionary point of view, trust is an excellent adaptation for a social species. Being trusting is the sort of thing that might not work so well for a given individual but works out for the species in the long run.

Except evolution acts on individuals, not species. In order for trust to evolve, individuals must gain benefit from it.

It's like cuteness. What's the evolutionary purpose of finding creatures with infantile features and proportions cute? Easy: it's so we don't murder our young. If those little darlings didn't worm their way into our hearts at first sight, it's for damn sure they wouldn't make it through the third night of random crying, feeding, and diaper changes.

It's so we don't eat our own children, which would remove our genes from the population.

Re:Slow news day? (2, Interesting)

bogjobber (880402) | about 5 years ago | (#28578773)

Because people are inherently honest. Dishonesty is an abnormality.

That's true to a certain extent, but I would add a large caveat. People are honest when they know obeying the social norms will be rewarded, and there is a real chance of being caught or punished for their dishonesty. Most people don't steal, but if a situation like the article describes occurred in meatspace, people would be stealing like crazy.

The trust can't co-exist without strict societal rules that reward cooperation and discourage selfishness. That's why in game theory problems like the prisoner's dilemma [wikipedia.org] , people will try to help themselves at the detriment to their partner, even though the optimal solution is to cooperate.

Re:Slow news day? (1)

Stargoat (658863) | about 5 years ago | (#28579011)

That's funny. I took the exact opposite view in this situation.

I was thinking that a group of people were to choose silence, they would be more likely to pass their genes on. Evolution in a social species favors trust.

Re:Slow news day? (1)

bogjobber (880402) | about 5 years ago | (#28579885)

But being selfish sometimes makes you more likely to pass on your genes as well. So while we are social creatures, that doesn't mean people aren't looking for an opportunity for personal gratification at the expense of others. We all intuitively know this. I mean you've seen people, right? It's not like assholes don't have kids.

Trust is still Important (3, Interesting)

PleaseFearMe (1549865) | about 5 years ago | (#28579507)

In real life, a reputation follows a person. No one will invest in Madoff anymore. In the game, a reputation follows the username. If the game does not allow username changes, then being dishonest would adversely affect the cheater's game play, which means cheating/punishment is _a part of_ the game. People probably were no longer willing to play with Ridic anymore. In games like Counter-Strike, if a person does not cover you in one round, then you remember the name, and no longer trust him to cover you in the next round. It may not seem to be as big of a deal in Counter-Strike because almost everything resets in the next round, but nothing resets in Eve and people lost hard-earned money. So in summary, in Ridic's case, the cheater lost even if he did not get banned, because no one would be willing to play with him again.

Re:Slow news day? (1)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | about 5 years ago | (#28580371)

That theory doesn't hold water in other games that have smaller subscription fees (such as RS).

RS (as an example to the extreme), has an economy that is almost built off currency and prices generated or affected by Pump-And-Dump clans, mage-boxing, account stealing, trust trading, player luring, and public price manipulation.

The biggest reason for this, in my opinion, is that while EVE has a subscription fee of 15$/month, RS can be played for free or have additions for 5$/month. With pre-trade restriction prices of 10-12$/mill, losing an account simply doesn't matter in comparison to the gain of being dishonest and stealing from other players.

As with many things, the more a person has invested in something, the more they'll try to keep it.

You misrepresent game theory (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28580649)

It's this very fact that pisses game theorists off to no end -- agents in the system continue to act completely irrationally (ie, to trust) when the rules clearly indicate every advantage for the "cheater" and next to no consequences.

I work using game theory to model international relations. This is not at all a problem for game theory; in fact, game theory tends to presuppose that trust is the default choice and treachery is the abnormality. Your hypothesis of some inherent human altruism as being more explicative of human behavior than game theory is bunk.

Your problem is that you only understand game theory in its most basic form: a single round game with four possible outcomes. In this configuration, it is true that it is best to cheat, but this does not model anything in the real world and game theorists don't use it; this is just the introductory version that we give to students who are unlikely to ever actually use it.

What is more realistic is to suppose games of many rounds between the same players. In this case, players will not cheat because they know that if they do that, their partner will also cheat in the next round and it costs more in the long run. This conception works out pretty well in empirical testing: experiments show that students playing multi-round versions of the prisoner's dilemma for cash rewards will not cheat until the last round, when they tend to cheat. If they play a single round, whether they cheat seems to vary depending on the environment that the experiment is conducted in. If they don't know how many rounds they will play, they almost never cheat.

As part of my master's thesis, I ran that last situation: in over 400 rounds of the game between 80 participants, I had exactly one cheater, which was perfectly in line with what the theory predicted.

Today, game theorists mostly work on how cycles of trust work. For example, as I mentioned above, if one player cheats once, then his partner will cheat the next round. Both players will move into the mindset of minimizing damage and cheat consistently. To break out of this, you need to introduce communication and small stake games to rebuild the trust cycle.

The problem with game theory is not some inherent human tendency to honesty as you claim, but that it supposes that the players have perfect knowledge, which people don't in the real world. Ambiguity leads to less risk taking, which leads people to avoid cheating, even in single round situations. Another shortcoming is that it is very difficult to build games that are complex enough to model the real world, but again, this has nothing to do with your hypothesis.

Re:Slow news day? (2, Interesting)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#28578417)

The problem is, there IS actually no real consequence. What is the consequence? The account was banned. That is a consequence ... how? Sure, the average gamer would probably be a little shocked, a few years of his life down the drain, but someone whose goal is to con? He doesn't play anyway.

It's also not a safeguard against never doing it again. He could just hire someone to make an account for him.

Re:Slow news day? (3, Insightful)

KDR_11k (778916) | about 5 years ago | (#28578681)

It's a game about betraying, conning, etc. Only the RMT part was an issue at all, Eve is all about ripping others off ingame.

Re:Slow news day? (1, Funny)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#28578879)

Yes, we already established that it's a simulation of real life economy.

Re:Slow news day? (1)

mpe (36238) | about 5 years ago | (#28579107)

It's a game about betraying, conning, etc. Only the RMT part was an issue at all, Eve is all about ripping others off ingame.

But they don't appear interested in having real world laws used against the guy.

Re:Slow news day? (1)

slackbheep (1420367) | about 5 years ago | (#28579863)

Mostly because nuking from orbit is an option, as well as the only way to be sure.

Re:Slow news day? (3, Insightful)

Exception Duck (1524809) | about 5 years ago | (#28578971)

Should it be illegal to scam people in the game ? As I understand it - this is part of the game, scamming people....
Then he broke the EULA - and they kicked him out of the game... Any real world consequences are not justifiable in my opinion.

What I don't really get is - why the buyer isn't kicked out as well... surely 200 billion ISK in EVE can't be that hard to trace... or do they have money laundering services there ? How on earth would they work in a log-all virtual world.

Re:Slow news day? (1)

NightRain (144349) | about 5 years ago | (#28578985)

If they traced the purchaser then he would have been banned as well. But given that it was likely some anonymous alt for an isk seller, it's not exactly news that it got banned

Re:Slow news day? (1)

Exception Duck (1524809) | about 5 years ago | (#28579307)

How hard is it to ban the purchaser ?

At some point the "money" must exchange "hands".

How can you be anonymous(to the operators) inside EVE ?

Re:Slow news day? (4, Interesting)

St.Creed (853824) | about 5 years ago | (#28580497)

CCP warns consistently that they track all ISK transfers and once they come down on an ISK-seller, all the money he ever traded is not only gone, but replaced by the same figure with a "minus" in front of it. If you bought a lot of cash it could mean you'd be bankrupt on that character.

I'm not sure how often CCP exactly does that kind of thing, but in this case they have a pretty good incentive to come down hard on the sellers and buyers.

Re:Slow news day? (1)

Grail (18233) | about 5 years ago | (#28577329)

If it gets more people interested in the game who cares that Slashdot is a month behind the curve?

Re:Slow news day? (1)

zergl (841491) | about 5 years ago | (#28577473)

If it gets more people interested in the game who cares that Slashdot is a month behind the curve?

Nobody. I just felt like pointing it out.

Re:Slow news day? (4, Insightful)

iocat (572367) | about 5 years ago | (#28577841)

Eve is by far both my favorite MMO and my favorite game I don't play. Anytime the world is getting boring, you can count on some major scandal or event in Eve to pep things up.

Re:Slow news day? (2, Insightful)

plasmacutter (901737) | about 5 years ago | (#28577379)

madoff has been sentenced and the trial is over..

people have gotten used to the spectacle of embezzlement and ponzi schemes, so we have to find another one.

Re:Slow news day? (2, Interesting)

Seumas (6865) | about 5 years ago | (#28578345)

I'm not really sure why this is newsworthy again. There is a massive bank scam or other fraud or corporate infiltration every couple months in EVE-Online going back a number of years, now. It's a part of the game and happens regularly. Space is a cold and hard place.

Re:Slow news day? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28580653)

In World of Warcraft, these people are called Chinese Gold Farmers.

5000$? Pocket change.

Hilarious.

Maybe these companies will wake up some day (0, Troll)

Cernst77 (816740) | about 5 years ago | (#28577311)

...and allow some kind of regulated Real Money Trade inside their games.

Re:Maybe these companies will wake up some day (1)

Zoshnell (573838) | about 5 years ago | (#28577343)

How... how does that even bring anything to the story at all? Not that its a non-story for anyone not invested/interested in EVE. They don't want people selling in game currency for real world money. Thats how they want to do things. Your comment, at best, is throwaway.

I bid you good morrow sir.

Re:Maybe these companies will wake up some day (0, Troll)

Cernst77 (816740) | about 5 years ago | (#28577375)

I thought this was a good place to voice my stance on RMT in games, which, yes, is a minority view.

Re:Maybe these companies will wake up some day (1)

zergl (841491) | about 5 years ago | (#28577359)

CCP already has something like that in place in EVE Online.

You can buy a GTC (Game Time Code) and directly sell it to other players for ISK (ingame money) through a secured official system on the website or convert it into a in-game tradeable item called Pilot License EXtension (PLEX) [eveonline.com] .

Re:Maybe these companies will wake up some day (1)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | about 5 years ago | (#28577487)

I thought EVE already allowed you to convert ISK into USD through them at a fixed exchange rate...

Re:Maybe these companies will wake up some day (1)

zergl (841491) | about 5 years ago | (#28577553)

I thought EVE already allowed you to convert ISK into USD through them at a fixed exchange rate...

Nope. Second Life does that, AFAIK.

Re:Maybe these companies will wake up some day (1)

julesh (229690) | about 5 years ago | (#28578687)

CCP already has something like that in place in EVE Online.

You can buy a GTC (Game Time Code) and directly sell it to other players for ISK (ingame money)

Yes, but there's no official mechanism for converting your ISK back to real money. For that, you'd basically have to sell it externally, presumably to an ISK trader.

Re:Maybe these companies will wake up some day (5, Funny)

longacre (1090157) | about 5 years ago | (#28577587)

There are already games that let you do that. They're called NYSE, NASDAQ and FOREX.

Re:Maybe these companies will wake up some day (4, Funny)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#28578469)

Yeah, but their graphics sure sucks and blows at the same time. At best you get some vector graphics... pfff, get with the times, morons!

'sides, last time I went for PvP I got pummeled by GMs and locked outta the server. Effing carebears.

Just you wait... (1)

SchizoStatic (1413201) | about 5 years ago | (#28577313)

He probably has a job lined up now as a normal bank exec or a job in government.

Re:Just you wait... (5, Funny)

gringofrijolero (1489395) | about 5 years ago | (#28577355)

Both. He works for Goldman Sachs...

Ricdic was banned... (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | about 5 years ago | (#28577323)

Oh yeah! That'll work. And just how many accounts you think the guy has that's doing the very same thing right now? His new name? Likdik... Life - Art... which is more real?

Re:Ricdic was banned... (1)

andersa (687550) | about 5 years ago | (#28578145)

Well, you have to fill out your personal details, like your real name and where you live to get an account, so presumably they can find all accounts and ban them that way. Also, from what the guy stated, he doesn't want to play anymore. Remember that he exchanged the in game currency for real life currency, which is the whole problem. Otherwise the scam is perfectly within the rules of the game and had it only been for that, he could have continued to play the game.

Re:Ricdic was banned... (2, Insightful)

jonbryce (703250) | about 5 years ago | (#28579033)

And of course, people always tell the truth on web registration forms

Re:Ricdic was banned... (1)

andersa (687550) | about 5 years ago | (#28580233)

There is a difference between making a bogus account on some random forum or website, and registering for something you pay for usually with a credit card.

Interesting and Boring at the Same Time (5, Interesting)

whisper_jeff (680366) | about 5 years ago | (#28577335)

EVE continues to be an interesting study in politics and intrigue but I will forever fail to understand its appeal as an MMO. I've tried playing it - it totally does not appeal to me in any way, what-so-ever. It was about as dreadfully boring as a game could possibly be without being nothing at all. In my opinion. But, its political backstabbings and manipulations of its systems sure as hell generate some interesting stories... Intensely interesting and dreadfully boring at the same time.

Re:Interesting and Boring at the Same Time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28577649)

Eve is quite a boring game in the sense that there's is almost zero push for players to head in any particular direction. If you're looking for storyline or a focused set of goals, Eve will never impress - there's no rush to level 60 here. Eve is all about the goals that you, the player sets.

Re:Interesting and Boring at the Same Time (4, Funny)

QuantumG (50515) | about 5 years ago | (#28577807)

I achieved my goal of not playing it anymore. I didn't achieve my goal of figuring out why I wanted to play it in the first place.

Re:Interesting and Boring at the Same Time (1)

bertoelcon (1557907) | about 5 years ago | (#28577833)

Isn't the idea of a game to escape reality, not have it mimic so flawlessly the errors that exist in reality so heavily?

Re:Interesting and Boring at the Same Time (3, Interesting)

discord5 (798235) | about 5 years ago | (#28578827)

Isn't the idea of a game to escape reality, not have it mimic so flawlessly the errors that exist in reality so heavily?

That, or the fact that you can be a bastard as much as you like. I no longer play Eve, but it was great fun camping at a gate waiting for a good mark to blackmail. Oh, I could tell you stories of people that came after me with a bigger ship, and how I'd blackmail them again, or how they would bring more friends than I could bring and I'd have to run and wait until they got bored with chasing me around the nearby systems.I could tell you about how I once infiltrated a small corp with an alt and cleaned out their hangars, and the smile on my face as I sold some of it back to them without them realizing. Oh, I escaped reality alright. I got to be that very person you should never trust, and I've had so many insults thrown at me that it still makes me smile whenever I fondly reminisce those days;

That was the fun in Eve for me. Some like to build large empires to wage war and play politics, others like to spend their time gambling on the markets, and some just like the idea of wearing an eyepatch shouting "ARRRRRRRR".

Eve is one of the few games where I often reconsider playing it again, but it just wouldn't be the same without the gang of friends I used to annoy people with. That, and the considerable amount of time it would take away from other hobbies I've picked up since.

Re:Interesting and Boring at the Same Time (3, Interesting)

jollyreaper (513215) | about 5 years ago | (#28577911)

EVE continues to be an interesting study in politics and intrigue but I will forever fail to understand its appeal as an MMO. I've tried playing it - it totally does not appeal to me in any way, what-so-ever. It was about as dreadfully boring as a game could possibly be without being nothing at all. In my opinion. But, its political backstabbings and manipulations of its systems sure as hell generate some interesting stories... Intensely interesting and dreadfully boring at the same time.

Perversely enough, those are exactly the play mechanics they wanted to emulate.

MMORPG's are weird beasts. On one hand, it doesn't feel like an RPG because nobody is in character, nobody is playing according to the setting's fluff. It all feels like a bunch of game geeks dorking around on a video game. But on the other hand, these seemingly average, real-life people can be anything but. I'm not just talking about the mild-mannered high school mathlete who becomes a griefing dickhead when he gets online, I'm talking about the people who work out the elaborate con jobs. There was one massive screw-job that took over a year to plan and execute. You don't really know anyone.

I played EVE briefly and am firmly in the carebear camp. If a game is any bit more complicated and involved than an FPS deathmatch, I'd prefer to be playing as a team rather than in competition.

The time it takes to put into a game like this, to get anywhere, to pull off these virtual coups, it's mental illness in a can. We're talking obsessive behavior, unhealthy commitments of time not seen outside of stalker/murderer ex's and the terminally ambitious.

Re:Interesting and Boring at the Same Time (2, Interesting)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#28578443)

"Metagaming" is thicker in EvE than in any other game out there, mostly because your chance to impact the playing experience of other players has never been higher. EvE is a social-economic experiment of sorts, a lot of the experience you have depends on the interaction with other players.

Of course, if you're not into that, there are few MMOs out there that could be any more boring.

Re:Interesting and Boring at the Same Time (3, Funny)

DrXym (126579) | about 5 years ago | (#28578489)

This learning curve [wordpress.com] may explain why EVE is so intimidating / boring.

Anyway, once you get into it its actually a great game. Perhaps you have to have liked playing Elite back in the day to appreciate it. It's a massively online version Elite. Aside from all fighting you also get the politicking, scams, crimes and so forth that make the game world hugely dynamic.

Well duh, you got it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28578495)

Most MMO's are boring, after all, you can play any game for so long. SWG is not fondly remembered for its battles or storyline, but for the sandbox that allowed some of us to create an alternate world were we could play... well star wars.

EVE does it even better. People don't play it to fly a starship, they play it for the economy model. It is amazing and allows you to pull of stuff that would take a lifetime in the realworld and sometimes gets you killed.

You can look at the D&D rulebook and see nothing but stats and rules for manipulating numbers, an accountants manual perhaps, OR you can see it as the spreadsheet gateway to a fantasy world of your own making. Of course, you could do it without the D&D rulebook, but for most of us, it helps to have a tool (the game) to build the fantasy around.

Re:Interesting and Boring at the Same Time (1)

Dr. Impossible (1580675) | about 5 years ago | (#28578715)

Every time I read a story about EVE, all I can think of is why the hell anyone would want to play it, let alone pay a monthly fee to do so. It does a better job of simulating the boredom and dreadfulness of real life than Sims does, and it also sounds like it was practically designed for griefing. What a shitload of fuck.

Good advert for Eve... (5, Interesting)

Manip (656104) | about 5 years ago | (#28577349)

You might think I'm being sarcastic but really. Each time I read one of these stories about an Eve problem I only want to play the game more. I've played other MMOs and having full banking institutions, investments, and companies exist is within its self very rare.

I mean all games have some kind of monetary system and by extension a way to trade money for goods. But very few are able to recreate the real world so closely.

Take for example World of Warcraft, you have gold, and you can trade. But you'd never have real businesses exist because the game just doesn't work that way, let alone banks.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28577457)

The reason eve fails is BECAUSE it replicates the real world too well. When you "play" Eve, one gets the distinct feeling that one is actually not playing a game but doing work. The feeling of the drudgery of work.

Maybe CCP will learn from the financial crisis that a utopian hypercapitalist world is not only a fantasy world, it's not all that fun.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (2, Funny)

tibman (623933) | about 5 years ago | (#28577517)

Aye, i get tired of boarding trade vessels and ransoming the crew's lives for cash to pay off my debts. I do enough of that in the real world!

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1)

zergl (841491) | about 5 years ago | (#28577613)

Aye, i get tired of boarding trade vessels and ransoming the crew's lives for cash to pay off my debts. I do enough of that in the real world!

Am I the only one that had to think about Somalian pirates peacefully mining in High Sec after reading this post? :)

Re:Good advert for Eve... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28577695)

Well maybe if we gave them mining rights somewhere so they could make an honest living, then they wouldn't be trying to board vessels to ransom passengers/crew? :D

Re:Good advert for Eve... (2, Interesting)

cratermoon (765155) | about 5 years ago | (#28578005)

Oddly enough enough, there's a corp in Eve known as the Somali Coastguard Authority.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | about 5 years ago | (#28577523)

The real problem is that we live in a society that makes "work" so miserable. It should be something we want to do.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (2, Interesting)

hedwards (940851) | about 5 years ago | (#28577541)

And where exactly do you find people that want to be janitors and coal miners? It's a rather Utopian view to suggest that it's something that everybody can have.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | about 5 years ago | (#28577631)

Those, and other tedious work can be fully automated, or at the very least break it up into much shorter shifts. so the creative work would be designing the machines to do it. Believe it or not, it takes a lot of effort to make a job as miserable as possible, and the reasons for it are very easy to see. It serves to distract people's attention away from from those who actually make the work so odious. And another thing, am I being told that because utopia is "impossible" to achieve, I should just shut up and do what I am told? My response is NSFW.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28577825)

The system of monetary exchange already provides fully and completely for the automation of tedious tasks. For example, putting wheels on cars, putting beans in bags, creating pencils from wood. The world has a pool of labour and a stream of output, and the sum of the latter equals the standard of living (although not equally distributed). Monetary exchange imperfectly but quite regularly pushes towards the maximisation of output given the available labour by reallocating whatever labour is available to where it gives the most output. If you change the nature of the input (labour) or set constraints on it you change the nature of the output.

In this specific case, the technology simply isn't there in most cases (robotic janitors? Welcome to 2100. Here's what current state of the art robots looks like: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ASoCJTYgYB0

Even if the labour that goes into janitors is reallocated into robot designers, robot constructors, factory workers at robot factorys, salespeople, accountants, people to program site specifics, robot maintenance etc, you're likely to have a substantially lower output, which in practice means a lot more dirty buildings.

Shorter shifts? So e.g. someone who's a janitor only needs to actually work 3 hours a day to earn 80% of someone who spent ten years of study loans to get a PhD? It's an interesting concept, but would in addition take a massive increase in labour supply to make the amount of dirty buildings not increase when people work less.

Obstacles:

Q: But tedious work dulls the mind. Surely if tedious work was eliminated for a short while, their burst of creativity would rapidly increase the state of technology until robots were fully as productive as humans?
A: Uh. Well. Yeah, one could go to Bangladesh and retrain 30% of the populace to be robot designers. Or you could. Good luck.

Q: This really pisses me off in an NSFW way
A: Which is why you explain away reality by creating the fantasized "sabotagers", those who stand in the path of enlightened progress and whose only joy in life is to obstruct and create odious pain for others which in some not fully clear but still obvious-to-the-world way leads to profit for them.

I'm sorry for the sarcasm, but if someone starts talking about a global conspiracy of shadow communists they would be physically harassed in many places as well.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1)

timmarhy (659436) | about 5 years ago | (#28578167)

bullshit. the fact is there is always going to shitty jobs that someone has to do. hell i have a pretty good job and it has shitty parts about it, it's called life.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1)

Khyber (864651) | about 5 years ago | (#28578911)

"Believe it or not, it takes a lot of effort to make a job as miserable as possible,"

We know someone that's never had the experience of being management. ;)

Re:Good advert for Eve... (4, Insightful)

zergl (841491) | about 5 years ago | (#28577545)

The reason eve fails is BECAUSE it replicates the real world too well. When you "play" Eve, one gets the distinct feeling that one is actually not playing a game but doing work. The feeling of the drudgery of work.

Maybe CCP will learn from the financial crisis that a utopian hypercapitalist world is not only a fantasy world, it's not all that fun.

I have to disagree on that one. EVE is what you make out of it. You can do tedious and boring stuff like run an industrial enterprise (aka Spreadsheets Online), mine asteroids (mindnumbingly boring), do PVE (which is admittedly terrible in EVE) combat or you can go the PVP route (be it as a pirate, mercenary, grunt in one of the major power blocks or declaring war on carebear corps for "protection money") and blow up other people's pixels leading to tasty bitter tears for your drinking pleasure (complete loss of whatever you're flying when you get blown up can lead to amusing smack talk).

Or you could do something completely different and do the social engineering and scamming (completely accepted by the TOS as long as you stay within game mechanics) that keeps EVE in the mainstream news.

It's a sandbox, there should be something in it for you to have fun with as long as you can befriend the general gameplay, setting and the UI (which is constantly improving) surrounding it.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1)

KermodeBear (738243) | about 5 years ago | (#28577705)

Eve is, for the most part, a giant sandbox. If you like the idea of a space based MMO, but you find Eve to be all work and no play, then quite honestly you're doing it wrong.

No, the real reason EVE fails is because (1)

Travoltus (110240) | about 5 years ago | (#28578549)

One or two of the very few married EVE Online players in the world spent $100 of their household's real life cash to buy a freighter in-game only to have it stolen from them and then some other real life bill didn't get paid and then they faced their wives' wrath and as Porky Pig once said... badebadebadethatsallfolks!

Re:Good advert for Eve... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28578267)

Take for example World of Warcraft, you have gold, and you can trade. But you'd never have real businesses exist because the game just doesn't work that way, let alone banks.

Which is fine because you'd have to be a complete moron to trust another player with your money which is essentially what this bank in EVE is.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1)

takev (214836) | about 5 years ago | (#28578869)

The same can be said for meatspace banks.

You will need to calculate the risk that your money will be stolen and how often it will be stolen and how much, then calculate the interest you will receive back. Then you see which one is bigger.

Re:Good advert for Eve... (1)

Dr. Impossible (1580675) | about 5 years ago | (#28578735)

I mean all games have some kind of monetary system and by extension a way to trade money for goods. But very few are able to recreate the real world so closely.

That's because no sane person wants to recreate their daily existence in a video game. Video games are (meant to be) escapism and entertainment.

Summer's EVE ? Only for DOUCHEBAGS!! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28577353)

Yo! Douchebag! Yeah you! Douchebag!

In my head: (2, Interesting)

Alzheimers (467217) | about 5 years ago | (#28577373)

Kneejerk response #1: This jerk is why we're all going to have to pay income taxes on our MMO loot someday.

Kneejerk response #2: Finally! The solution to the health care crisis...Gold Sellers!

Kneejerk response #3: You're only jealous you didn't think of it first.

-----------------

My Final Conclusion: I just hope his kid is getting better.

Happy Birthday USA - you are one old fart (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28577493)

Once you hit 200 it's downhill from there.

A Bit of a Puzzle (3, Insightful)

hardburn (141468) | about 5 years ago | (#28577605)

I'd like to take a minute to address concerns over EBANK's solvency, that is, it's ability to pay out withdraws. As I mentioned before, EBANK moved a large portion of it's assets into cash and we've been merrily burning through it today as people have drawn their money out in concern. We also haven't had deposits coming in - so the money is only flowing in one direction....out.

That's ok.

We still have enough cash to handle withdraws and as of the time I write this; withdraws have been actioned. I would also like to point out a few other things; we have had many persons asking when they can deposit money again, as a show of support and to provide EBANK with an infusion of cash. On top of this, we have had private loans offered to us totaling 100 billion and if we really have to....we still have the ability to issue a Bond or if really required, we may finally launch an IPO.

Why am I pointing this out? I want to provide assurances to our customers that your money is safe with EBANK. We are solvent and continue to build liquidity even in this challenging environment. Even if we have a solvency issue, we have many options at hand to address that should it arise.

Again, thank you to those who have expressed support.

I don't play Eve anymore (purely out of regard for personal time management), but I've read many statements like the above of business dealings in the game (not necessarily about scams, just straight business). What I'm always struck by is that if you're capable of finagling all these things in the game, what's stopping you from doing it in real life?

When this thought first struck me, I was making plans to run an in game POS as a business, and had produced a full business plan and profit analysis spreadsheet. Which is exactly what you'd expect to need at the start of a real business.

Supply and demand, buy low/sell high, and negotiations are all key skills in running a business in the game, but no more or less than they are in real life. Real life has a lot more government regulation (CCP takes a largely hands-off policy as long as you're not trading ISK for real money), but as long as you can navigate that, you'll have the skills you need for a real business, too.

Re:A Bit of a Puzzle (2, Insightful)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 5 years ago | (#28577629)

People in real life are a little less likely to just hand over their money to joe blow. Which is why banks are chartered and insured by the government.

As far as opening regular businesses, absolutely.

Re:A Bit of a Puzzle (2, Insightful)

GryMor (88799) | about 5 years ago | (#28578033)

EVE moves faster than real life, being a game, getting a basic income is easy through a variety of means (mining, piracy, manufacturing, bounties and, in this case trade). Proper management of capital can trivially have returns of 10% a month with almost no work or 100% in a few days on the market with a lot of work.

This is coupled with high risk, but it's in game risk. Even wiped back to 0 you can recover back to 'normal player' levels radiatively quickly. If you took the kind of risks that are normal in game in real life, you would lose people their life's savings.

Obvious.... (3, Funny)

raehl (609729) | about 5 years ago | (#28578099)

What I'm always struck by is that if you're capable of finagling all these things in the game, what's stopping you from doing it in real life?

Body odor.

Re:A Bit of a Puzzle (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 years ago | (#28578355)

Hey man, don't leave us with your story ending there.......let us know, did you start a successful business?

Re:A Bit of a Puzzle (1)

hardburn (141468) | about 5 years ago | (#28579509)

I was, and still am, a consultant, which is technically a sole proprietorship. Leaving the game helped me spend more time on that.

Within the game itself, the POS plan didn't take off. Common moon resources (which are mined by POSes) had their market flooded by alliances who setup POSes for territory purposes rather than profit, and the less common resources were already snatched up.

Re:A Bit of a Puzzle (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 years ago | (#28578449)

I'll also add, this is why I don't play video games much any more........real life is so much of an adventure that games seem less exciting in comparison. They are fun, but compared to what I can REALLY do.....

Re:A Bit of a Puzzle (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28578545)

Meh, wake me up when real life is in effing outer space.

Re:A Bit of a Puzzle (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 years ago | (#28579013)

Man, I'll tell you what, Eve online isn't in outerspace, it's here on earth. Not only that, it's displayed to you on a monitor that you can hold in your hands, limited color, and doesn't even fill up your entire frame of vision. A good portion of the fun is in your imagination, and what you do with it.

And yet, the same is true for real life, except real life is infinitely more varied and interesting. As for the graphics, go out and look at a mud puddle sometime, blowing in the wind. You will see more color variation in that puddle than you ever will on a monitor (if you don't believe me, the easiest way to test this is open up a color pallet and try to get fluorescent orange. There are a lot of colors that just wont display on a monitor). Not only that, if you're doing something worthwhile, the emotional highs are so much more intense and satisfying than in a video game.

I'm saying this as someone who likes and plays video games, they are fun, but for excitement and interest they just don't compare to real life. Of course the rules of life are a lot harder to get used to, and some people don't quite make it and end up homeless or dead. Painful.

They need an EDIC. (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about 5 years ago | (#28577655)

EVE Deposit Insurance Corporation. Banks pay a small premium to EDIC, in turn it insures everybody's deposits.

Of course, to keep it from going broke immediately, there would have to be some kind of in-game sanctions against cheaters and embezzlers! Does EVE have a "jail"???

Re:They need an EDIC. (1)

MagusSlurpy (592575) | about 5 years ago | (#28577953)

I think that's what the banning represents. The offenders are not allowed to interact with the EVE society anymore.

Re:They need an EDIC. (1)

Rakshasa Taisab (244699) | about 5 years ago | (#28578163)

No it isn't. Up until the point where the guy decided to sell the ISK to ISK sellers for real money, it was all perfectly ok. Worse thefts and scams have happened, and it's all sanctioned by CCP.

Re:They need an EDIC. (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#28578457)

How so?

"WTB, one account"

Re:They need an EDIC. (1)

MagusSlurpy (592575) | about 5 years ago | (#28578793)

How so?

"WTB, one account"

That would be the same response a virtual jail sentence would get, though.

Madoff strikes again! (1)

ar1550 (544991) | about 5 years ago | (#28577659)

Wow, I didn't realize that federal inmates were allowed to play Eve!

Already happened in Second Life (1)

Animats (122034) | about 5 years ago | (#28577699)

Remember the big flap with Second Life banks when Ginko Financial failed? [wired.com] They had a real bank run in Second Life, with avatars crowding branches demanding their money.

Linden Labs then banned all "banks" in Second Life unless operated by a regulated real-world financial institution. A few real banks established a presence in Second Life, but most (maybe all) have given it up by now.

The problem with banks in a virtual world is that what banks really do is sell loans. It's hard to collect from an avatar. So a loan business is tough to make work. A deposit and transfer business is quite workable, but it's expensive to run well. Among other things, it has all the fraud-prevention problems and costs of, say, PayPal.

Re:Already happened in Second Life (1)

Wingman 5 (551897) | about 5 years ago | (#28577771)

It's hard to collect from an avatar.

See that's the best part of eve, you can collect from the avatar.

That sure is a nice Battleship you have there, it would be a shame if something where to "happen" to it.

Re:Already happened in Second Life (1)

Bwerf (106435) | about 5 years ago | (#28578105)

That can easily be worked around by borrowing the money on a new account or one from a friend that is stopping to play. Or even a different char on on your own account.

Re:Already happened in Second Life (2, Insightful)

GryMor (88799) | about 5 years ago | (#28578071)

Loans are EBANK's bread and butter. The loans are mostly collateralized (there are in game mechanisms for locking resources so they can still be used by a third party but can't be moved) or guaranteed by a trusted party (effectively using their reputation as collateral).

Added to the compartmentalized capital management they have, and no one person can kill the bank, take 200bn? Sure, but that isn't death, just a really big chunk of profit...

Trying to scare people into renewing their account (1)

An anonymous Frank (559486) | about 5 years ago | (#28577839)

This is rather very old news, and the "run" is also over already; my ISKs are sitting safely at the bank, and earning too! Heck, people were even making deposits to help out while others were reacting.

What I thought was interesting, was the talk of how perhaps the bank needs to increase returns to reflect the greater resulting/perceived risk.

Seems like someone finally... (1)

SpeZek (970136) | about 5 years ago | (#28578319)

figured out how to win the ever elusive mmo endgame

Banning is a reward (4, Funny)

Organic Brain Damage (863655) | about 5 years ago | (#28579385)

Banning Ricdic for making $5,000 in real money from the game will probably result in him making more real money, from real work, in the real world. He might even meet a real girl and have a real relationship and real children. Hardly seems like much of a punishment, if you ask me. If the developers of EVE wanted to punish Ricdic, they'd have given him two more accounts....for free.

Not sure who the bigger fool is ... (1)

stwrtpj (518864) | about 5 years ago | (#28580399)

Not sure who the bigger fool is, the guy that embezzled all the in-game money or the schmuck that paid $5000 of real money for it.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...