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EVE Online Players Rage, Protest Over Microtransactions

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the vote-with-your-wallet dept.

Businesses 315

Several readers have written with news of a controversy that's been slowly building in space-based MMO EVE Online. "It all began with the Incarna update, which added an item shop to the long-running sci-fi sandbox. Players began to voice their concerns over the bizarrely high prices of items in the shop, with one particular item reaching an insane $68 US. Before this hullabaloo had the chance to so much as come to a simmer, an internal newsletter from CCP was leaked to the internet. The document outlined the introduction of microtransactions into EVE and mentioned that at some point, ships, ammunition, and so forth may be available for purchase with real-world currency. This naturally sent players into even more of a frenzy." Reader Ogre332 points out additional coverage, but notes that many publications are missing the punchline: "Players are angry that CCP has blatantly lied about their intentions and have responded to these customers concerns by basically telling us they know what we want better than we do. The purported e-mail from CCP CEO Hilmar Pétursson was like gas on a fire, and a response to some concerns in the form of a dev blog was not well received at all. Players are protesting, and many claim to be canceling their accounts left and right."

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You mean companies want to make profits? (4, Insightful)

assemblerex (1275164) | more than 2 years ago | (#36570926)

Companies always want to milk the cow. Has it ever been any different in the history of man?

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (5, Insightful)

interval1066 (668936) | more than 2 years ago | (#36570968)

Well, like anything else it takes cash to run an enterprise. Games are no exception. Although $68 virtual items are a joke. Hardly what I would call a micro transaction.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (1)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571312)

Cash they're already getting through the fact that players pay a monthly subscription already.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (1)

Nationless (2123580) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571444)

Do you know what it's for?

It's for a monocle. That your character wears. In a space Sim.

Call me crazy, but who cares? People who want to support the game can buy them and people who don't want to can ignore the whole thing. It's not like it gives them any stat boosts or advantages other than looking snazzy in their character portraits. Something which I can only imagine matters very little when trying to keep your hull integrity intact and/or mining resources.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (5, Insightful)

wulfbyte (722147) | more than 2 years ago | (#36570982)

There is a difference between milking the cow with sensible management and long term milk production and butchering the cow for a quick feast and assuming there will always be another cow.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571050)

Nothing in WoW that affects your actual in-game experience (how powerful you are) is available for real world money.

And those guys seems to be doin' ok.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571340)

I'm sure there's a WoW black market where gold and/or items are farmed and sold for RL currency.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (1)

Sniper98G (1078397) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571112)

Companies always want to milk the cow. Has it ever been any different in the history of man?

True, and companies have the right and motivation to try and make money anyway they can. However, when you are providing a service and you do not listen to the input of those people who subscribe to your service you will end up "drying the cow up" as the people who have been giving you their money suddenly stop.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (2)

Elbart (1233584) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571128)

In EvE, they players are part of the economy, making stuff and selling it. CCP wants to compete with the own subscribers over the "revenue" and, by selling gameplay-related items, rendering most ingame-efforts of the dedicated players worthless.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (0)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571424)

In EVE the players ARE the economy.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571238)

And consumers always want something of value for free without ads. Both sides are greedy, but one side is more sustainable than the other...

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571324)

It's one thing to milk the cow.

It's another to slaughter the goose that lays the golden eggs.

Re:You mean companies want to make profits? (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571402)

and fools chasing away their loyal customers will lose money instead

Who cares? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36570930)

It's a stupid, boring-ass game anyways.

Journalism (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36570940)

Rage? They are raging? Would you say this is "epic" rage over some sort of "fail"? Perhaps there are some "lols" involved in said epic fail rage?

Re:Journalism (1, Insightful)

AdamHaun (43173) | more than 2 years ago | (#36570994)

Er... rage is a legitimate verb.

Re:Journalism (2)

bsharp8256 (1372285) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571160)

OP confirmed for over 38 years old.

Re:Journalism (1)

headLITE (171240) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571358)

If you put it in numbers, about a year ago or so CCP announced that they'd probably not spend a lot of time for the following 18 months. Around one hundred cancelled subscriptions were counted on the official forums. The number of subs EVE actually lost at that time, according to mmodata: 40.000.

This time the forum count is above 2000.

Re:Journalism (1)

twidarkling (1537077) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571462)

Jesus. If even half as many cancel this time, that's likely to be a huge fucking blow to the game. About the only one that can stand to lose 20k subscribers at a shot is WoW, and since the uproar is higher than last time, 20k would be conservative. I've never played EVE, but I'd hate to see it go. It proves that a game can be different from WoW and still work. Well, had worked.

Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36570944)

Im not sure why they are trying to be sneaky about it, but if thats what they think will be best for the bottom line, it will be coming.

Re:Hmmm (1)

Hieronymous Cowherd (11195) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571368)

They're being sneaky about it because of the expectation of this very reaction.

Re:Hmmm (0)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571502)

I think the whole thing is funny. After all no one is being forced into buying this crap, and all of this crap can be bought with ISK (the in-game currency) - in fact, ISK is the default currency, since to get the items you need AUR which is obtained via PLEX, which is obtained either with real money or in game ISK.

The argument about CCP later moving to an "I win" item set that will be available only to those with deep pockets is ludicrous because THIS ALREADY HAPPENS. People with a lot of money are already able to buy toons (characters) that have been trained by someone else, ISK galore to make all the ships they need, etc. The net change is zero. Rich people will always screw over poor people inside the game or out. However CCP is still permitting a path to those items for those of us who already have the skills and know-how to obtain all the ISK we will need.

So either play the game, or pay the game, or get out of the way.

wow (0)

CTU (1844100) | more than 2 years ago | (#36570952)

ether they are forced to close up shop because to many players jump ship, or they will make a killing selling nothing. Ether way EVE online will change drastically unless they remove this micro-transaction system.

Selling game changing items vs Selling bragging. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36570960)

The monacle being 68$ doesn't matter to me. What matters to me is talk about selling ships, items, and/or faction standings for real life money. Those are game changing items, and should be earned as part of the game.

Re:Selling game changing items vs Selling bragging (3, Insightful)

Gutboy (587531) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571036)

Come on, once they started selling PLEX, you've been able to trade real life money for ships, items, etc. This will just make the relationship more obvious.

Re:Selling game changing items vs Selling bragging (1)

Hieronymous Cowherd (11195) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571362)

Cash->PLEX->isk->items feeds the economy twice.

Cash->PLEX->AUR->items feeds nothing but CCP.

Re:Selling game changing items vs Selling bragging (1)

SlowMovingTarget (550823) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571384)

...you've been able to trade real life money for ships, items, ...

But you've been able to trade it for things other players made. Other players made those ships and items (or ran the missions or complexes to get the items). In effect, you were buying game time for someone else in exchange for their in-game efforts.

Even when you did buy these things from other players, they didn't make it an "I win by credit card" situation. I say this as someone who has bought Plex and sold them for ISK.

Re:Selling game changing items vs Selling bragging (3, Interesting)

Lazareth (1756336) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571408)

There is an enormous difference, for many reasons.

The EVE economy is based on items being built by the players, for the players, using materials gathered by the players. PLEX is a sort of trade commodity, it is like diamonds - people want them because they are desirable, not because they are useful (in game at least). It has no effect on gameplay and is basically just a trade good on the market. Trading a PLEX has no other immediate ingame effect other than redistributing ISK among players, which is completely balanced in cost by the players themselves.

"Gold Spaceships" and AUR is completely different from this mechanic. Ships are seeded and directly tied to real money. Sure, you can buy a PLEX with ISK, but that is superficial - you are, in effect, just having somebody else pay real money for your spaceship. Sure you can fund a CNR (a special battleship) using ISK gained from a PLEX, but it is completely optional for that PLEX to be involved - with Gold Spaceships it would become MANDATORY to involve a PLEX. Also, since the ship is seeded, no tangible effort has been made to build or acquire the ship by anybody - not through missioning, grinding, building, whatever - the ship entirely come into being depending on real money.

Basically the entire EVE economy, which is the pride and I daresay center of the soul of EVE, can become entirely unhinged by AUR and Gold Stuff, since it is impossible for an industrial body in EVE to compete with people simply swiping their credit card for special premium superstuff.

More issues can be touched upon. Think for example the Alliance Tournament (a yearly competition with spaceships), what happens to the game if a team wins because they brought Gold Spaceships? Should all invest real money to be able to compete then?

P2W and microtransactions are reasonable depending on the gaming model. EVE is simply not built for it.

Re:Selling game changing items vs Selling bragging (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571460)

Except PLEX trade is a win for everyone, still requiring the actual 'crafting' of the ship/item, and rewarding the industrialist. The feared MTs are an utter loss for the industrialist, basically flushing the economy (foundation of the game) down the toilet.

Re:Selling game changing items vs Selling bragging (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571516)

Yeah, because ships and faction/officer items are not being sold for real money right now.

They're probably right (4, Insightful)

artor3 (1344997) | more than 2 years ago | (#36570962)

Players are angry that CCP has blatantly lied about their intentions and have responded to these customers concerns by basically telling us they know what we want better than we do.

Players aren't a hivemind. Odds are the company that makes the game has a pretty good idea what the community as a whole wants, while a vocal minority is convinced that everyone else feels as they do.

Re:They're probably right (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571014)

Normally I'd agree with you but remember EVE isn't like many MMO's; there's only one 'server' and everyone who plays EVE plays in the same 'shard' that everyone else plays, except for a few thousand in China.

You'd be surprised how likeminded they are.

When it comes down to it however, the feeling - the rage if you will isn't because of CCP wanted to make Money; hell if CCP asked most people would probably agree to pay extra subs; the thing is the betrayal, the reversal of a lot of promises and the complete lack of respect afforded to the player by the company.

Re:They're probably right (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571024)

It's hard to believe those who want the option to pay more money for in-game advantages are the majority.

It also does not correspond to the discussions on the forums. Very, very few players are OK with pay-to-win in Eve. I haven't even heard of a single players who WANTS this, only players who will tolerate it. You'd think if players wanted pay-to-win, they'd be saying so in the forums in order to oppose the players who are trying to make it not happen.

Re:They're probably right (1)

Hieronymous Cowherd (11195) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571382)

Well, there have been a couple of trolls saying so, but they're pretty obvious trolls. Even then, 5 people can't sustain a business model.

Re:They're probably right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571028)

This so called "community" is what has ruined gaming as a whole, readily slapping down cash for things that used to be given away for free or, in some cases, paying for things twice.

Re:They're probably right (1)

The Dawn Of Time (2115350) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571344)

Yeah, you have the right to be entertained for free! Fight for it by whining anonymously on the Internet, that'll show 'em!

Re:They're probably right (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571422)

Well, this isn't about paying for playing. This is about paying for in-game items with real money. That is, the money you put in affects your in-game success. That makes the game unfair.

Re:They're probably right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571048)

That would be true 90% of the time, but EVE players are not morons and if they say something is hurting the game...well...then it is

Re:They're probably right (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571094)

eve players are a hive. anyways, eve's gameplay environment gets pretty shattered if you can just buy a fleet if you had a nice bailout fund from your company.

Re:They're probably right (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571354)

eve players are a hive. anyways, eve's gameplay environment gets pretty shattered if you can just buy a fleet if you had a nice bailout fund from your company.

New bulletin: This has been true ever since they started selling PLEX. If what you say is also true, then the gameplay environment has been shattered for a long time now. If, on the other hand, the game is playable today, then you're obviously wrong.

Re:They're probably right (1)

Hieronymous Cowherd (11195) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571430)

How PLEX works with the economy has also been explained repeatedly.
I can do so again if you really don't understand, and are not being intentionally obtuse to try to make your point.

Assuming that you really do know about how PLEX work, now contrast that with a system where items are sold for Aurum with no interaction with the player-run economy.

Re:They're probably right (1)

luther349 (645380) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571144)

yea not in this game with a small but highly drivin communty.if people start quiting in mass the games done for. adding a item shop it eve was just fuking retarted. i for one will not be coming back to the game now.this is the same game that laughed out the isk for money sellers in favor of there own system that extanged gamestime.

Re:They're probably right (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571176)

It's not that simple in the EVE universe. There are a couple of camps in the EVE player base. Mainly, they fall into 1) Just want to play the damn game and don't give a fuck about the larger issues. These people only yell when something they use daily changes. 2) Want to play the game, meta game, uber-meta game and think it all really really matters. 3) Want to play the game as 2, but don't have the time, so they want to pay cash to replace months of grinding.

2 and 3 do not get along well at all. They make up the majority of the games players.

The reason this matters at all, and what makes EVE unique is that there are no shards. The entire games economy, and the entire fictional universe (it's very big) are on ONE server. So when players replace months of "work" in game with $$ instead, it whacks the economy in game really hard. Which disrupts alliances, which disrupts the local economy, which disrupts the individual corps, which means that support and security break down and pretty soon entire regions of space are changing hands, which whacks the economy even harder. All because Corp B's CEO was able to replace a lost Titan instantly with his bonus check from work. (fictionalized)

Another issue is the elite problem. I'm not sure CCP/EVE has ever come out and said it, but one of their biggest problems is how to balance the day 1 players against the guys that joined last week. Given the mechanics of the game, it's not possible, at all. But they have so far managed to make it competitive, to a degree. In that newbies can become specialized very quickly, and can match an older player (in that specialization) within a few months.

But without micro-transactions, that newbie can't afford to fly with or against the older players. My day 1 character can make more money being logged off and idle, than any newbie could make playing 8 hours a day. In fact, my day 1 character(s) (oh you bet I have more than one) are all currently idle, because I'm taking a break from eve right now (see why?) and guess what? They are still making millions of isk per hour, EACH.

I personally fall into the 1) player type. So I don't care if they bring in micro-transactions... just so long as they don't break the fucking economy in the process.

Re:They're probably right (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571392)

Group 2 drives the whole story around the EvE universe, though. They "shape" the universe. Unlike other MMOs that are pretty much entirely driven by what the company making it wants, EvE and it's "politics" are largely at the hands of the players. And while the alliances that crash shards with the sheer amount of ships they bring into the battle probably do not represent the majority of players, they are the ones that make the game interesting. More, they are what many new players aspire to, and want to climb to.

Also, a good deal of EvE's popularity stems from losses being nontrivial. Dying in pretty much any MMO out there means jack. Death in EvE, even if it's "only" your ship that is gone, is a setback that you first have to recover from. The stakes are quite a bit higher than in most MMOs out there (provided you take the game "serious", as many Group 2 players do). If this is trivialized because you can easily just buy another Titan with a few bucks, a lot of Group 2 players will lose interest in the game.

Also, you may rest assured that this will have some impact in the economy of the game. The current economy is a careful balance of supply and demand, from raw ores up to ships. Tinkering with any of those will have some impact, good or bad is to be decided.

Re:They're probably right (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571204)

6 Months ago CCP said they had no intentions of Micro Transactions AT ALL.

In 6 months they have gone from no MT's, to poorly planed MT's with idea's to screw people out money to improve gameplay that they took away in the last few months. Wouldn't you be a little upset?

Re:They're probably right (1)

BeanBagKing (1151733) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571292)

Players that are upset about something are usually vocal, however, a minority doesn't usually make front page of slashdot, get on PC gamer, etc, no matter how vocal.

Re:They're probably right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571350)

Management completely isolated themselves from the community 3 years ago in order to persue this path without distractions.

Re:They're probably right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571406)

You're so wrong.

Re:They're probably right (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571438)

More to the point, if the forum goers are right, and most players of the game are exactly like them, then the solution is obvious: don't buy any of the items. If you don't buy them, CCP gains nothing, and they'll eventually stop offering them. Free market.

Re:They're probably right (1)

Fractal Dice (696349) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571526)

The avalanche has started. It is too late for the pebbles to vote.

Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (0, Troll)

djlowe (41723) | more than 2 years ago | (#36570996)

This is not "Not News for Nerds" nor "Stuff That Matters", and here's why:

The people that play Eve Online do so after agreeing to its Terms of Service.

Link: EVE Online TERMS OF SERVICE [eveonline.com] . One of its sections states:

CCP MAY FIND IT NECESSARY ON OCCASION TO MAKE CHANGES TO OR RESET CERTAIN PARAMETERS OF THE PERSISTENT GAME WORLD MECHANICS, INTERFACE OR FEATURES OF EVE ONLINE IN ORDER TO MAINTAIN GAME BALANCE AND ENHANCE PLAYABILITY OR PERFORMANCE FOR ITS SUBSCRIBERS. THESE CHANGES MAY AFFECT OR CAUSE SETBACKS FOR THE CHARACTERS YOU’VE CREATED.

The next paragraph states:

"THESE RULES MAY BE REVISED AT ANY TIME. IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO REVIEW THEM OCCASIONALLY TO ENSURE THAT YOU ARE IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE RULES, POLICIES AND AGREEMENTS DESIGNATED BY CCP."

So, I say "Fuck 'em - even if they were too lazy to read the TOS, they are still bound by it."

They are free to gripe, bitch, etc., but in the end, they have no recourse.

It's a game, they paid to play under the terms offered. If they don't like the changes, they are free to quit. If they think that they're "owed" anything, they're delusional: They gained whatever they did, BEFORE the changes... so, they've already benefited from the money they spent.

Sorry, but I've no sympathy: I've played the original EverQuest for over 11 years now, and have occasionally been pissed off as SOE has attempted to make it more "WoW-like"... but, I CHOSE to continue to play. If I were sufficiently angered, I'd quit, but it wouldn't make me think that all of time and money spent previously was wasted, nor would I think that I was somehow entitled to protest and have such recognized simply because of the money I knowlingly spent and the time I willingly consumed.

I suppose that this is one of the ways that I'm different from the "Entitled Generations" that came after me... I actually *read* the TOS', etc., read it when it's updated, and then decide whether or not I wish to be bound by its terms.

That, of course, is contrary to many of the people here on Slashdot these days, who think that such are merely suggestions, or can be ignored 'cause they didn't read them or disagree with them.

Regards,

dj

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (2)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571070)

How is CCP killing their game with their own little NGE not "news for nerds"?

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571076)

I'm glad you are so much better than the rest of the "entitled generation." I appreciate you for not being arrogant at all.

For a real world example of how blizzard made nearly everyone except new players unhappy with wow, look at the first expansion when people (new players) were griping about how hard it was to get to level 60 and have upper tier weapons. They release a package upgrade that allows you to level to 70, faster than it took to go to level 60. Plus, it made the top tier weapons at level 60 useless to new basic weapons you would get at 70. People had to work hours and hours to get some of those weapons and they put out an update where you can just buy them, or get them easily.

Same thing happened with gunbound.

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571232)

"People had to work hours and hours to get some of those weapons and they put out an update where you can just buy them, or get them easily."

Work? Why would you pay somebody else for something that was work, not fun?

If it IS fun, then being able to pay to get the same result doesn't negate the fun you had in the first place.

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (1)

Fulminata (999320) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571436)

That's kind of a bad example given that WoW's subscription numbers continued to steadily rise after the release of Burning Crusade. If "nearly everyone" was upset with the changes made back then, it certainly wasn't affecting Blizzard's bottom line.

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (0)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571080)

Careful you dont fall off that high horse of yours... Whne we invest hours and hours and hours into a game, and help SUSTAIN IT, there is a reasonable expectation that we should have at least 'some' say in the way an ongoing game is developed. The fact that people are so upset shows the level of emotional commitment either way. You are right and people can vote with their wallet, but your assertation of take it or leave it ignores a whole host of other perspectives.

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571104)

Legal agreements of this kind mean something inside and only inside a court of law, and they can be void even there. That you think the TOS are even relevant here is baffling - this is not a legal dispute. These players were lied to and that makes them angry. More fundamentally they had a trust in CCP that was based on that lie, a trust saying that CCP would make choices for Eve that would make it a good place for players to be. That trust has been betrayed, and betrayal generally makes people angry. You don't have to agree with these players, but if you can't understand their feelings, even just in a logical way, then there is something wrong with you and I suggest you see a psychologist - no really, I'm not joking, if you aren't just trolling you are not well.

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (1)

Riceballsan (816702) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571118)

Every MMO has overly broad TOS that entitles the GMs to do what they want, it dosn't exempt it from falling into gaming news when they chose to abuse it. For instance pretty much every subscription based MMO usually say something along the lines of "these are the rules, if you break them you will be banned and if you are banned we will not refund any subscription fees you have paid up till now (IE if you paid 6 months ahead, tough luck). Also we reserve the right to ban you for reasons not listed in the TOS, in the case of WoW their clause is listed as "(iii) Anything that Blizzard considers contrary to the "essence" of the Game.". So more or less just about every MMO has a TOS clause that allows them to say, oh you paid 6 months in advance, thanks for the money, umm I don't like your shirt, you can't play. The fact that they have these rules isn't news, but were they to actually use the rights they gave themselves in the EULA, it would be newsworthy.

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571372)

This is not "Not News for Nerds" nor "Stuff That Matters"...

If this were true, no one would have bothered to click the link on the main page to read the article, much less post comments on it. The more comments posted here, the more proof you have that it's news that matters to /. readers. BTW, you've just upvoted this topic to /.'s editors by contributing to the discussion. Expect more such articles in the future...

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571412)

Yes. So?

There's something similar in the contract with my ISP. Should I be not angry if they change the terms to my disadvantage? And consider canceling the contract?

Just because someone agreed to a license contract doesn't mean that you can screw him over. Unless, of course, that's part of the license agreement. They have no recourse. No. Except of course terminating the contract, which is, if you reread the original posting, pretty much what they plan to do.

So what again was your point?

Re:Not News for Nerds nor Stuff That Matters (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571420)

: I've played the original EverQuest for over 11 years now

so you are kind of like a battered wife when it comes to taking abuse from game companies

Water is wet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36570998)

You could make a headline every day of the week just by filling in the blank. "Eve Online players rage, protest over ______."

It's as if this is a rare thing.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571012)

..It's not a rare thing. Companies do this to their players all the time. On one hand you have the dev's listening and then on the other the sales team do whatever makes money. This is not unusual.

Everquest/EQ2 did it, they enabled purchasing items that directly effected the game. The dev's had promised they would never allow RMT (real money trading) in that game, it was implemented, people whined, the same people are still playing. People are fickle, they want the game to head in a particular direction and they'll be active enough in voicing their opinion, but at the end of the day if things don't go the way they plan they will still pay to play the game.

This is what happens when the company is ran by marketing people instead of the people that are actually in touch with the playerbase. Remembering of course that game forums do not represent the entire playerbase, or even a small part of the playerbase. The vocal should not be the only people listened to. The best way to get through to everyone is to make a simple yes/no poll on the server login screen and not let people pass go until they pick an option. This causes the knock on problem of people that have multiple accounts, but surely this can be easily solved by filtering results to 1 per IP.

As someone else said, companies want to make profits? Shock! Life will go on, people won't close their accounts in protest. They know it's futile and they've invested far too much at this point to just walk away because suddenly there's microtransactions available. The predictable excuse that the dev's will use is "if you dislike microtransactions just don't pay for anything, avoid the game shop".

Re:It's as if this is a rare thing.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571270)

Same thing with Netflix changing their interface. Sick and tired of hearing vote with your dollars when there isn't a choice of where to vote.

They Should Make an OSS Play-Alike! (2)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571038)

It wouldn't be hard. Just take the spreadsheet from Openoffice and you're already halfway there! Build some cheesy flash graphics on top of it and chances are it'll come out looking better than Eve does!

Re:They Should Make an OSS Play-Alike! (1)

cratermoon (765155) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571258)

Seriously. EvE Online is just Trade Wars [wikipedia.org] with pretty graphics, and I quote,

The players seek to gain control of resources: usually fuel, ore, food, and technology, and travel through sectors of the galaxy trading them for money or undervalued resources. Players use their wealth to upgrade their spaceship with better weapons and defenses, and fight for control of planets and starbases.

Re:They Should Make an OSS Play-Alike! (1)

alva_edison (630431) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571386)

Yes, but does the Level 4 Citadel allow you to warp the planet in order to do massive amounts of trading without using turns, all for the price of some fuel?

Re:They Should Make an OSS Play-Alike! (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571396)

Seriously. EvE Online is just Trade Wars [wikipedia.org] with pretty graphics, and I quote, ...

Yes, there are similarities. However, there are many, many more similarities between you and a cow than you quoted as between Trade Wars and EVE Online. Therefore, by the (faulty) logic you're using, you're just a cow with a keyboard.

casual vs hard core (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571056)

Is a game that rewards consumers who generate real world disposable wealth from real world jobs worse then a game that rewards its customers who generate virtual wealth in the game?

This seems to be just another case of the "hard core" weeping for special status.

"these customers concerns by basically telling us they know what we want better than we do." The fact is this is true, the CCP do know what is better for its consumers. The "hard core" vocal minority do not speak for the plurality of the gamers. CCP know the "hard core" is full of shit because at the end of the day gamers speak their voice by buying what CCP is selling.

Re:casual vs hard core (1)

Riceballsan (816702) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571188)

In general from what I have seen, quite a few quit games because of models that make what they do in game seem insignificant. In general all forms of MMORPGs are more or less the feeling that what you do is making your character stronger, and you get the constant feel of power rising. In general when you do all that work, play the game and work your character up for several months, then you find out that new players just tossed in $200 and instantly rose above your level, you lose that thrill, on top of that the new players, once the characters that they have surpassed quit, they lose the thrill themselves, there's no point working in game when they already bought everything they need, and thus have nothing to work towards. Basically some models like that turn a multi-year game into 1 month blast through type game. The effect goes double for PVP games, generally in games with PVP, the new wealthy players buy the expensive CS items to stomp all over the players who don't have them, but then get bored once the non cash players get fed up and quit.

$68 is nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571062)

One of the first MMO companies to introduce pay-for-perks, Iron Realms Entertainment, has items for hundreds of dollars in their MUDs.

You can already do this! (1)

zero0ne (1309517) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571068)

It is called PLEX.

I can go spend real $$ on PLEX on CCPs website. I then get a item in game that is called PLEX.

I can take said PLEX and sell it on the eve online market for ISK.

I can then take ISK and buy SHIPS, AMMO, etc.

** Nothing significant has changed **

Re:You can already do this! (1)

ridley4 (1535661) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571148)

You've actually played EVE, right?

It's entirely different from how it works in direct RMT, because there is a market for PLEX, between individual players/characters/whatever. The PLEX is bought and then sold on the in-game. There is no currency created, just an exchange of goods.

That means it follows the following flow: REAL MONEY -> PLEX -> Naturally gained ISK->in-game goods produced by players

The big thing about the whole Aurum debacle and the (ig)Nobel Exchange is that all goods are poofed in from nothing. That fancy monocle that I could actually pay a bill with? It came from nothing, and the money came from nothing. The awesome ammo that's horribly OP, so as to promote Pay-to-Win? Nobody produced it. From nothing.

The Aurum/Nobel Exchange economy thus follows this flow: REAL MONEY-> MAGIC -> MAGIC -> MAGIC -> MONOCLES

Now, how is that similar, again?

Re:You can already do this! (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571414)

Now, how is that similar, again?

I can spend real money to acquire in-game items. Handwave all you like, this is the truth.

Re:You can already do this! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571150)

Yeah? And then whoever you sold the PLEX to gets to use it for game time, and you can only buy the ships and ammo that were already made in-game by other players. That's pretty different from the store model of other games, where real money buys instant stuff, especially when it's stuff you can't get any other way.

No (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571180)

PLEX is just an alternative way to obtain game currency. Incarna stuff can only be obtained with RL money. The inevitable future will be new items, ships, etc. that can only be obtained via RL money. CCP is setting a precedent here. Something significant has changed.

No..... Re:No (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571282)

ISK > PLEX > Aurum

Where is RL money required?

Re:You can already do this! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571294)

Except it haschanged, that ammo and those ships all had to be crafted by someone. The minerals used to craft it had to be refined by someone. The ore refined to make those minerals had to be mined by someone. The problem people have is that by introducing the ability to buy items directly from ccp the entire chain of production is made obsolete and hence the entire economic system breaks down, ie. the thing that makes eve interesting in the first place. Supply and demand go out the window once you can just magic items you require into existance using your credit card.
And once one corporation is buying everything they need, so is everyone else because otherwise you'll fall behind. Same with if performance enhancing drugs were legal, everyone would HAVE to use them because everyone else is.

Re:You can already do this! (1)

abhorevil (960865) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571318)

You're missing what is going on. Currently, PLEX is converted into in-game currency which is then used to by player assets. The new model will side-step the player-run economy which is the cornerstone of what makes Eve Online so special and fun for so many of their gamers.

True (1)

MAXOMENOS (9802) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571510)

I could understand the screaming if it wasn't one old monopoly alliance screaming about possible new T2 BPOs.

As it is, it's just EVE selling overpriced skirts. Big deal.

Anger, fear, aggression... the dark side are they. (0)

Guppy (12314) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571088)

Nerd Rage! Nerd Rage! Aaaaaah!

I'm confused... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571194)

I don't play EVE, so correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't this whole notion of paying real money for in-game stuff already exist? If I recall, you can buy items that extend your gametime, and those items can in turn be sold to other players. Which means you can turn your IRL money into in-game money. All that seems to be changing is that a level of indirection is being removed; instead of paying for gametime, selling the gametime, and then using that money to buy things you'd just buy stuff directly. Which leads me to this question: why is this causing an uproar in the community? It seems like nothing's really changing.

Rant, Rave and blah blah blah blah.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571218)

The fact of the matter is that you can get the items for ISK. That means that you can get the items for NOTHING from yourself other than time. There's no difference between buying these and buying other expensive items from NPCs in game.

Try blueprints for example. The avatar blueprint costs 67.5 billion (with a B) isk. That's about $169 and it goes directly to an NPC. Where's the outrage for that? Is that not high enough? How about a player to player trade of a revenent blueprint copy (a one time use item) for 70b?

Then if you want to research (upgrade) your blueprint it costs a further 12 billion or so isk. Oh, and years of waiting on top of the financial cost.

I think this update shows more the cluelessness of the certain loud mouthed players concerning the state of their game (which they won't be truly quitting from as much as they threaten) rather than the cluelessness of the designers. It's been proven time and again that eve players will spend seemingly obscene amounts of cash on items, and a $68 vanity item is nothing, especially if you can get it for free.

Meritocracy (5, Insightful)

copponex (13876) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571234)

The only thing online games offer over real life is the opportunity to be someone you are not. WoW is successful because people can be rich and famous without actually being rich or famous. Once you allow people with more money to have cooler items in-game, you are destroying the reason people play it.

That doesn't mean it won't be profitable, but I think it will certainly turn many people off.

Re:Meritocracy (1)

osu-neko (2604) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571454)

The only thing online games offer over real life is the opportunity to be someone you are not. WoW is successful because people can be rich and famous without actually being rich or famous. Once you allow people with more money to have cooler items in-game, you are destroying the reason people play it.

This is obviously, blatantly false. Most people enjoy these games regardless of whether they become rich or famous. Indeed, people have been playing games like this for the opportunity to kill monsters, do quests, overcome challenges, just plain toss fireballs around because it's cool, and all sorts of other reasons for years, often in games where there are no significant opportunity for accumulating riches or fame. To assert any one thing as the "only thing" is utter stupidity...

LOTRO (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571248)

Doesn't Lord of the Rings Online already have such a system? It became big and kind of died a little, but is still going strong. How is this different than EVE? People still play LOTRO. It seems that game though it is less built in gear than say WOW where it is everything. Is Eve more WOW like or did most people really leave LOTRO when it went free with pay for items?

Re:LOTRO (1)

Beelzebud (1361137) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571266)

Eve has a monthly fee. LOTRO does not.

Re:LOTRO (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571426)

Neither LOTRO or WOW have anything to do with EVE.

The problem here is that EVE's economy is all but entirely player controlled. With the current game time card system (PLEX), you can buy PLEX for real-life money, and then sell it for in-game money. However, in that case - no additional in-game assets are created. In-game money is transferred between players; but that money already existed. Nothing is created; nothing is destroyed.

However, the problem with this microtransaction thing is that it WILL create assets (ships, etc.) out of nothing. This stands to devastate the player-run economy. Furthermore, EVE is a hardcore PVP game - the entire point of the game is to round up your buddies, jump in your internetspaceships, and make other players cry delicious tears.

This new system will allow people to recoup PVP losses merely by spending more on a game of internet spaceships than they are on retirement. True - to some extent, that happens now, with PLEX - but with PLEX, it's all in-game. Your buyer already generated that money in game. If you buy a new ship, a player had already built it and transported it to wherever they're selling it. Logistics were carried out. Et cetera.

With this? Slap down $50 and you've got a shiny new ship, whenever, wherever. It's terrible, and CCP is terrible for considering it.

Can't play both sides of the field (1)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571298)

Playing two sides of the field = nono.

You either make players pay every month - which means they expect balance.
Or you give players the ability to '1-up' their opponent by paying their way through it.

Doing both is silly, it just means that players will pay to win, and the others won't want to pay their monthly fee and enjoy the game less than the guy who bought his way in.

Doing it with just micropayments works, because if the players get tired of the heavy-users that's fine, they're not paying anything.

its not just about micro transacrions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571308)

some of us are protesting the fact we have been forced to upgrade our computers again as we can no longer use all our accounts at one time woithout crashing as ccp has made all cpus overheat and if you play 8 accounts cpus can no longer handlke the stress and are crashing annd im also sick bug ridden sofware

Micro-transactions (3, Insightful)

Emetophobe (878584) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571314)

I think companies are taking advantage of the fact that some people have a tendency to hoard and collect trinkets/items. Micro-transactions are just a way for these companies to cash in on human behaviour. I think it's unethical.

I have one friend for example that only plays Team Fortress 2 on idle servers. He barely even plays the game, he just idles 24/7 to collect more and more items. I ask him why he even bothers to idle since he doesnt actually play the game, and he can't come up with an answer. He constantly tells me how much he hates the game and all the changes Valve has made by constantly adding more and more items, yet he continues to idle and collect more items. Is that even sane? That sounds like an addiction.

These companies know exactly what they're doing, and they're making insane profits, so they'll continue to do it.

This sums-up the real problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571378)

CCP needs monies.

http://static.images.memegenerator.net/Instances400/8/8232/8429805.jpg

Not surprised (1, Insightful)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571398)

EVE is the most cut-throatedly capitalist MMO I've come across. The philosophy of most games is focused around fair play, balance, and looking out for the little guy, but EVE has always been about "may the richest man win" and "money equals power".

At first, this philosophy was just confined to the game world, but I've found that game designers build their personal values into their games. Nobody should be surprised that EVE's developers turn out to be just as mercenary in real life as they expect their players to be in game.

Re:Not surprised (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571472)

You don't have to be surprised by something to make it wrong. As a sandbox, the closed system economy was one of the most important features of the game, and a big part of why the 200,000 fans continue to play EVE. CCP is either incredibly foolish, or incredibly greedy, to think this kind of change will benefit them on anything but a very short term. In fact, with another big mmo on the way, it is very likely that they don't care so much if eve suffers - they need to fund their next project.

Reeks of Desperation on CCP's part (1)

random coward (527722) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571442)

The real issue is that this reeks of depseration for money on CCP's(the developer) part, as well as stupidity on how to get that money.

The expansion is bug ridden. They literally showed the players the door if you don't want the new features.

Protesting (1)

munky99999 (781012) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571450)

Basically there's a long list of problems. Everyone understood that the latest changes and expansion were pretty damn crap and there was bugs which came with an expansion like any expansion for any game. Everyone was grumbly/sad but didnt care. The main new addition to the game however was these vanity items like clothes and hats which they sell for $$. The players were concerned but didnt care too much.

Then an internal document leaked which showed they wanted to sell non-vanity things, which basically breaks the game. Nobody really knew for sure if the "internal document" was real or not. After a day or so of anger a mod let loose a vague comment which basically confirmed it as real by calling it a "newsletter" which caused a real shitstorm but they just continued to ignore the situation.

Finally they make an apology but basically say nothing and while they mention issues... they dont address the biggest issue at all. Which made the players that much more angry. Then they have a senior person write a dev blog quickly because the amount of rage and he basically said nothing at all... if not added fuel to the fire.

Rage goes on and then someone leaks CEO internal letter which basically says, ignore the customers. Customers rage more and they demand to know if they want to sell non-vanity items. Which they confirm so Mass unsubscribing and protests. Afterall you still have a month of gameplay at least after unsubscribing so there's protesting.

Aren't these Vanity items anyway? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#36571482)

What everyone seems to forget, is these are "Vanity" items which aren't supposed to effect the balance of the game in any way. Also the purported selling of ammo would, if we are to believe the "balance maintaining" intentions, are also Vanity items. Such as special rockets that make multicolored blast effects or some such.
The real issue that has pissed off the majority of hard core players (including me) is the new release is such a resource hog that it is impossible to run multiple clients on the same PC. I was able to run 3 clients at once before Incarna, now I can barely run 2, and my system is no slouch. I can only hope that the Client gets more streamlined as the release is completed. I have a certain degree of faith that the technical issues will be resolved by CCP in the future.

In short, I see nothing that would make me cancel my accounts. At least not yet.

Hah, EVE players... like their non-RMT illusions (1)

Lazy Jones (8403) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571494)

EVE has been plagued by rampant RMT for many years, it's full of botters and rich fools investing thousands of dollars in ingame items. It's not a big surprise that CCP wanted to make it more official, but apparently this was too much for the players who wanted their illusion of fair play on equal terms (hah!).

Needless to say, the threat to cancel one's account as a sign of disapproval for CCP's ideas has been a running gag for years as well ...

so uhm.... (4, Funny)

BulletMagnet (600525) | more than 2 years ago | (#36571506)

CCP is moving to become Zynga? Are they going to rename the game to EVEville or EVEwars too?

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