Gambling Laws Could Halt Diablo 3's South Korean Release

Logan Westbrook

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Feb 21, 2008
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Gambling Laws Could Halt Diablo 3's South Korean Release

Random loot drops means Diablo 3's [http://www.amazon.com/Diablo-III-Pc/dp/B00178630A/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1317641796&sr=8-1] real money auction house is a game of chance, says South Korean critics.

As controversial as Blizzard's plan to include a real money auction house in Diablo 3 has been in the West, in South Korea it may be even worse. There are questions over whether or not the cash auction house breaks South Korean gambling regulations; questions serious enough that the game could be refused classification in the country.

The reasoning goes like this: As the loot drops in Diablo 3 are random, being able to sell them for real money is essentially a form of gambling. Naturally, Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime has denied these claims, saying that while the two were superficially similar, Diablo 3's real money auction house lacked one of the key parts of gambling: risk. "[In Diablo 3] you're not risking anything," he said. "You're just investing your time. It is an important distinction."

Despite Morhaime's protests, according to a report presented to the South Korean National Assembly, Diablo 3 breaks Article 1 of the Gaming Industry Promotion Law. There is a precedent for equating cash auction houses to gambling: Emperor Online, a game made by the South Korean developer IMI, was denied classification for having a similar feature. Sources say that Blizzard employees in South Korea were aware that the auction house would be a hard sell with the rating board, but had to proceed anyway.

If the game is refused classification, it will be quite the blow for Blizzard. The simple solution would seem to be to release the game with that particular feature disabled, but as it generates revenue for Blizzard - the studio takes a percentage of each transaction - losing a potentially lucrative market like South Korea is going to hurt.

Diablo 3 comes out for PC in early 2012.

Source: Voodoo Exteme [http://ve3d.ign.com/articles/news/62381/South Korea-Considers-Diablo-III-Auction-House-Tantamount-To-Gambling] and Korea Times [http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/biz/2011/09/123_95415.html]



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Baresark

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I have to say, I'm not South Korean, but I wouldn't mind seeing this feature removed either. Stuff like this is annoying. I hate the game balance being ruined by being able to buy significantly better items with real money. This is going to ruin the competitive MP because no one is going to want to play against anyone else who may have just bought better items, making it that much easier for them to win.

On the other hand, I agree with Blizzard that there is no risk and therefore shouldn't be considered gambling. But, as a few people around here are familiar with, South Korea did open the first ever clinic to treat video game addiction. I'm not surprised they would take this stance at all.
 

PingoBlack

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Aug 6, 2011
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Erm ... Escapist?

Did you actual go and research Emperor Online?

That game includes a fully fledged Casino, not only an item auction house. So ... Did you research weather they lost classification due to actual game of chance?

Having an actual online casino built into game might be slightly different than Diablo 3. Of course, you just posted this in a way that implies exactly opposite.
 

Thyunda

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On one side, it's good to have that feature removed. I've always hated microtransactions. I paid for a roleplaying game, I don't want to be using my real life to fund it. Subscription models, I'm fine with. Essentially I'm paying for a persistent world to chill in. It's almost rent. Paying real money for the best items is offensive at best, only justifiable if the rest of the game is free to play. I assume Diablo 3 will be a full-priced retail release, and so has no excuse for relying on a microtransaction model to generate any extra revenue.

On the other...the South Korean classification board has no reason to classify this as gambling. Gambling requires an intrinsic amount of risk, and you don't have to pay anything to get something back, so if you hit some dungeon and come out of it with nothing, you haven't lost anything except some of your precious time, and unfortunately, time is not covered by gambling laws.

So, essentially, the feature should never have been present in the first place, but since it has already been implemented, South Korea should really just accept it like the rest of us. My only question...who are these 'critics' determined to refuse a game classification? Something doesn't sit right there.
 

Torrasque

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Baresark said:
I have to say, I'm not South Korean, but I wouldn't mind seeing this feature removed either. Stuff like this is annoying. I hate the game balance being ruined by being able to buy significantly better items with real money. This is going to ruin the competitive MP because no one is going to want to play against anyone else who may have just bought better items, making it that much easier for them to win.

On the other hand, I agree with Blizzard that there is no risk and therefore shouldn't be considered gambling. But, as a few people around here are familiar with, South Korea did open the first ever clinic to treat video game addiction. I'm not surprised they would take this stance at all.
I personally really enjoy playing with/against people who buy pixels, so when I beat them with my inferior gear, I can push it into their faces :D
Just like when I play MW2 against the tryhards who paid for max prestige, spend 40 hours a week practicing and refining their skills, who know every grenade throw, every sniping spot, and are generally more prepared than I am... and I still kick their asses.

The real-money auction house seems stupid to me, but I won't be using it based on principle, so I don't really care that much.
The only part of this article that I care about is the fact that the poor Koreans may not be able to play D3.

LAWL! Maybe I'll be able to play a Blizzard game without seeing someone who puts 100 hours into it every week, someone who is so disgustingly good at it because it is all they do, and actually be able to feel good about how I am doing in said Blizzard game :D
Fucking Koreans and their ruining every goddamn Blizz game I play >=/
 

Levethian

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Not sure that's truly gambling. You could equally ban walking in case you found some change on the street.

If you paid each time you walked for the chance to find some change, then it would be gambling.

+General thumbs-up for the cash auction-house feature.
The Lunatic said:
I really would not mind seeing the removal of this feature.
Only for it to be added by dubious & numerous 3rd parties. Meh.
 

Logan Westbrook

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Feb 21, 2008
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Levethian said:
The Lunatic said:
I really would not mind seeing the removal of this feature.
Only for it to be added by dubious & numerous 3rd parties. Meh.
Some of us feel that joining the gold farmers and taking a cut of their profit is not the best way to beat them.
 

PingoBlack

Searching for common sense ...
Aug 6, 2011
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The Lunatic said:
I really would not mind seeing the removal of this feature.
Yeah, article here and in Korean times is written for exactly people who hold this opinion. :) But it's not even a question.

They could perhaps remove the AH feature in Korea only tho, that's as far as the Korean Ratings Board reach goes. Nothing about this story affects EU or US.
 

ASnogarD

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There is a risk , unless I missed something here but I understood there was a fee to post your item onto the AH and I would assume if you are posting to the real money AH you would spend real money to post said items ?
You would be risking the fee in hope that the sale is a success, if not you lose your money.

The system is more devious because it also charges you 3 times, to set up a sale, if the sale is successfull and when you try cash in your money...plus the 3rd party system that deal with transfering your in game cash to your real life account takes a cut.

Blizzard are hoping to start a money making machine here... and by the look of things, things are going all thier way ( except in S.Korea ). It would seem that merely making games is just not the way things work anymore, need other revenue streams to expliot an IP for its full profit potential and provide for shareholders.
 

Rack

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Time is money, risking time to for a chance to get money absolutely is gambling.
 

Eric the Orange

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Satsuki666 said:
Levethian said:
The Lunatic said:
I really would not mind seeing the removal of this feature.
Only for it to be added by dubious & numerous 3rd parties. Meh.
Some of us feel that joining the gold farmers and taking a cut of their profit is not the best way to beat them.
I like to think of it as more of a gold farmer tax. You don't have to use it but I'm happy knowing that Blizzard is making money off of them.
 

Ghengis John

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Levethian said:
Not sure that's truly gambling. You could equally ban walking in case you found some change on the street.

If you paid each time you walked for the chance to find some change, then it would be gambling.
Not even the same thing by a long shot. You're downing a boss who you know will drop something. The value of that something is a random chance but you are engaged in an active, profit seeking activity. Where as in the act of walking any and and all benefits not pertaining to your health are purely incidental. It's like pulling the lever on a slot machine. Their objection makes a ton of sense actually.
 

CardinalPiggles

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Rack said:
Time is money, risking time to for a chance to get money absolutely is gambling.
You won't be 'risking' your time. You will be using it. What have you got to lose besides your otherwise free time by playing the game.

And that's likes saying doing a job in real life is gambling.
 

Logan Westbrook

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Feb 21, 2008
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Eric the Orange said:
I like to think of it as more of a gold farmer tax. You don't have to use it but I'm happy knowing that Blizzard is making money off of them.
I dont actually have a problem with it I just dont like how they went about doing it. I imagine if I get Diablo 3 I will end up selling stuff on it. I just dont like how they introduced it as a counter to gold farmers instead of them just wanting a piece of the pie like it actually is.

Ghengis John said:
Not even the same thing by a long shot. You're downing a boss who you know will drop something. The value of that something is a random chance but you are engaged in an active, profit seeking activity. Where as in the act of walking any and and all benefits not pertaining to your health are purely incidental. It's like pulling the lever on a slot machine. Their objection makes a ton of sense actually.
I think if anything is going to kill this for Blizzard its going to be the fact that you can buy gold for actual cash and then use the gamble feature at a vendor. It is literally the exact same and buying chips and tossing them in a slot machine.
 

Ghengis John

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CardinalPiggles said:
[And that's likes saying doing a job in real life is gambling.
I'm sure the problem they have with it, besides encouraging an activity at PC Bangs that they already have a problem with, is the random element. And if I were to nitpick I'd say most people's salaries are not determined by a random number generator. Even if it may feel that way at times.
 

LTK_70

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...losing a potentially lucrative market like South Korea is going to hurt.
Seriously? This is Blizzard we're talking about here. I hardly think losing the income from the in-game auction house from one country is going to make a difference for their bank accounts.
 

John Funk

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Dec 20, 2005
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Baresark said:
I have to say, I'm not South Korean, but I wouldn't mind seeing this feature removed either. Stuff like this is annoying. I hate the game balance being ruined by being able to buy significantly better items with real money. This is going to ruin the competitive MP because no one is going to want to play against anyone else who may have just bought better items, making it that much easier for them to win.

On the other hand, I agree with Blizzard that there is no risk and therefore shouldn't be considered gambling. But, as a few people around here are familiar with, South Korea did open the first ever clinic to treat video game addiction. I'm not surprised they would take this stance at all.
It happened all the time in Diablo 2, too. It just wasn't official.

Nothing has changed other than Blizzard actually making money off of it and it being less shady.
 

Rack

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John Funk said:
It happened all the time in Diablo 2, too. It just wasn't official.

Nothing has changed other than Blizzard actually making money off of it and it being less shady.
That's the same reasoning behind legalising Cannabis. And Ecstacy. And murder. Nothing's changed except rather than treading into murky waters it's accessible right from the game interface. Same thing happening only massively more prevalent.
 

Logan Westbrook

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If the loot drops are random, Wouldn't be your time your gambling and not your money? Unless you actually pay someone to actually collect loot instead of paying them for the loot itself, how could this be considered gambling?

And as long they avoid price inflation, I don't really have a problem with official auction houses. But I mean it's not like you can't go out and loot the item for yourself if you can't afford to pay for it.
 

4173

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I don't get it. Unless you're a fairly serious PvP'er, what difference does the AH make? They aren't making exclusive items for it, are they? Why should I care if Joey from Houston bought himself a shiny new hat?
 

Levethian

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Eric the Orange said:
Satsuki666 said:
Levethian said:
The Lunatic said:
I really would not mind seeing the removal of this feature.
Only for it to be added by dubious & numerous 3rd parties. Meh.
Some of us feel that joining the gold farmers and taking a cut of their profit is not the best way to beat them.
I like to think of it as more of a gold farmer tax. You don't have to use it but I'm happy knowing that Blizzard is making money off of them.
Agreed.
Plus, I see no real reason why people with busy lives shouldn't be able to pay to enjoy the best items in the game. We don't all have 100's of hours to spend grinding.
 

knhirt

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Rack said:
That's the same reasoning behind legalising Cannabis. And Ecstacy. And murder. Nothing's changed except rather than treading into murky waters it's accessible right from the game interface. Same thing happening only massively more prevalent.
Wait wait wait

Murder?
How do you go from videogames and recreational drugs to murder?
Also, who's arguing the merits of murder?
 

TheDooD

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Let me get this right... Out of all the F2P (pay to win to me) MMO's South Korea created and the rampant Starcraft 1 pro circuit gambling there.(The main reason MLG Starcraft 2 is so popular) They have gambling laws and Diablo 3's real money auction house is a problem. I'm seriously confused atm.



4173 said:
I don't get it. Unless you're a fairly serious PvP'er, what difference does the AH make? They aren't making exclusive items for it, are they?
To me the only reason an auction house in needed and or used. It's that they make the drop rate for items so bad and or the difficulty curve is so sharp. That weaker / inexperenced players overall might feel a need to use it.
 

Rack

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Well no-one is, I'm just demonstrating how specious that reasoning is. If you genuinely held "It happens anyway" as a good reason to allow something the only laws you'd have would be the ones that make no sense.
 

paketep

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Good. Perhaps that'll force them to release a version without that BS.
 

Eric the Orange

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Rack said:
John Funk said:
It happened all the time in Diablo 2, too. It just wasn't official.

Nothing has changed other than Blizzard actually making money off of it and it being less shady.
That's the same reasoning behind legalising Cannabis. And Ecstacy. And murder. Nothing's changed except rather than treading into murky waters it's accessible right from the game interface. Same thing happening only massively more prevalent.
Wait, wait murder? I can agree with the legalizing drugs comparison, but murder is a whole different thing. The argument behind legalizing drugs is that they are a victimless crime, and by legalization they could be better controlled and have safety guidelines put in place. So yes that is very similar to this. But murder, I don't even see where you draw the comparison. I've never heard of anyone arguing for the legalization of murder, and I don't even know what kind of argument there would be for it.
 

Logan Westbrook

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Wait, what?

How exactly does this auction house work? Is it a place where you can put up your own items for sale? The ones that you got legitimately in the first place?

Some people are saying that the only way to get good gear would be to actually buy it, and I'm incredibly confused. Would this mean that Blizzard is supplying all of the items? This also raises the question of whether or not they are exclusive to the auction house. Would there be a way to obtain such items naturally?

OT: Anyways, this is hardly a form of gambling.
 

Atmos Duality

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John Funk said:
It happened all the time in Diablo 2, too. It just wasn't official.

Nothing has changed other than Blizzard actually making money off of it and it being less shady.
Same drugs; different dealers.

Yeah, the new dealer might be subject to closer scrutiny, but attaching real-world value to in-game items did nothing but wreck the in-game economy; turning it into a "I buy power" game.
If you thought hacks, bots and dupes were bad before, it became much WORSE when these items started getting real-world value attached to them.

So really, it doesn't really matter who is pushing the goods.

While grind remains the primary motivator for continued play (which it was in Diablo 2), this illicit "gold-farming" market will always exist as a counterpoint to an unwanted gameplay mechanic, and it WILL be ruthlessly exploited.
 

DTWolfwood

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but as it generates revenue for Blizzard - the studio takes a percentage of each transaction - losing a potentially lucrative market like South Korea is going to hurt.
They've never done this before, how can it hurt them if they don't even have a baseline? Potential gain will not be realized, but there is no loss involved. you can't lose what you haven't gained.

I can potentially win a million dollars on the slot machine, but until i play it, it doesn't hurt me not having won the money.

Better the make guarantee money off the sales of the game and remove a feature a small percentage of ppl will use versus not being able to sell the game at all. It a no brainer!
 

ASnogarD

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Levethian said:
Quoted out of context I see no real reason why people with busy lives shouldn't be able to pay to enjoy the best items in the game. We don't all have 100's of hours to spend grinding.
This little comment made me realise there is something really sad going on here...

It basically says we should be allowed to buy items since our busy schedules dont allow us to grind for it, let me point out we are talking about a game... a form of entertainment that heavily features finding treasures and equipment as a reward mechanic, where is the fun if you could just buy the best stuff and show off your character to friends ?
Its like a buying a model, the fun is putting it together and the reward is showing off the result.
This system will be like being able to buy the model fully assembled, then showing it off... waste of money if you ask me.

People, games are suppose to be fun... its suppose to be fun looting and aquiring the items in game, suppose to be fun exploring the world... words like grind, dont imply fun.
If players aint prepared to go fetch the items themselves, what are they planning to do with the top end items when they buy them ? There isnt even a SW/Ogri to stand near the AH and show off... join random players open games and show off how you didnt aquire the skills to go with the gear ?

... oh, and once again: There is a PRICE to sell items in the AH, you pay a FEE in real cash just to put up the item. There is also another fee if you do sell the item, and finally theres the double charge if you try cash in ( one from Bliz and the other from Paypal/3rd party that deals with the transfer ).
 

Frostbite3789

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ASnogarD said:
Levethian said:
Quoted out of context I see no real reason why people with busy lives shouldn't be able to pay to enjoy the best items in the game. We don't all have 100's of hours to spend grinding.
This little comment made me realise there is something really sad going on here...

It basically says we should be allowed to buy items since our busy schedules dont allow us to grind for it, let me point out we are talking about a game... a form of entertainment that heavily features finding treasures and equipment as a reward mechanic, where is the fun if you could just buy the best stuff and show off your character to friends ?
Its like a buying a model, the fun is putting it together and the reward is showing off the result.
This system will be like being able to buy the model fully assembled, then showing it off... waste of money if you ask me.

People, games are suppose to be fun... its suppose to be fun looting and aquiring the items in game, suppose to be fun exploring the world... words like grind, dont imply fun.
If players aint prepared to go fetch the items themselves, what are they planning to do with the top end items when they buy them ? There isnt even a SW/Ogri to stand near the AH and show off... join random players open games and show off how you didnt aquire the skills to go with the gear ?

... oh, and once again: There is a PRICE to sell items in the AH, you pay a FEE in real cash just to put up the item. There is also another fee if you do sell the item, and finally theres the double charge if you try cash in ( one from Bliz and the other from Paypal/3rd party that deals with the transfer ).
Games...fun? Wh-what madness is this?!

This man is dangerous!
 

OMGIllithan

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Atmos Duality said:
John Funk said:
It happened all the time in Diablo 2, too. It just wasn't official.

Nothing has changed other than Blizzard actually making money off of it and it being less shady.
Same drugs; different dealers.

Yeah, the new dealer might be subject to closer scrutiny, but attaching real-world value to in-game items did nothing but wreck the in-game economy; turning it into a "I buy power" game.
If you thought hacks, bots and dupes were bad before, it became much WORSE when these items started getting real-world value attached to them.

So really, it doesn't really matter who is pushing the goods.

While grind remains the primary motivator for continued play (which it was in Diablo 2), this illicit "gold-farming" market will always exist as a counterpoint to an unwanted gameplay mechanic, and it WILL be ruthlessly exploited.
The economy will be fine. Like Mr. Funk said, the real money market existed in D2 but people were still able to trade in game without touching the market if they didn't want (I know I did). The majority of people likely aren't going to use this feature and will be looking to trade the same way you want to.

Also, the more "farmers" there are then the better prices are for everyone. The only people who are losing in this transaction are the people who thought they could make a semblance of an income from farming virtual items from a video game.

As another point unrelated to your post, who cares if people get a "competitive" advantage? Diablo is a cooperative game with a not serious and not balanced pvp component. If you join a game with someone who bought their way to victory than great! They'll be helping make your group's adventure that much easier to manage. Epeen has no place in Diablo and is a plague if you invest too much of yourself into it IMO.
 

kebab4you

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I call bull! How is investing time not a risk,say you grind for 20 hours to find a rare item to sell and assume you also don't find any rare item that´s 20 hours you gambled on searching for this item.
CardinalPiggles said:
Rack said:
Time is money, risking time to for a chance to get money absolutely is gambling.
You won't be 'risking' your time. You will be using it. What have you got to lose besides your otherwise free time by playing the game.

And that's likes saying doing a job in real life is gambling.
A job in real life always got a set amount of money you get from it at the end of the day, this do not.
 

OMGIllithan

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ASnogarD said:
Levethian said:
Quoted out of context I see no real reason why people with busy lives shouldn't be able to pay to enjoy the best items in the game. We don't all have 100's of hours to spend grinding.
This little comment made me realise there is something really sad going on here...

It basically says we should be allowed to buy items since our busy schedules dont allow us to grind for it, let me point out we are talking about a game... a form of entertainment that heavily features finding treasures and equipment as a reward mechanic, where is the fun if you could just buy the best stuff and show off your character to friends ?
Its like a buying a model, the fun is putting it together and the reward is showing off the result.
This system will be like being able to buy the model fully assembled, then showing it off... waste of money if you ask me.

People, games are suppose to be fun... its suppose to be fun looting and aquiring the items in game, suppose to be fun exploring the world... words like grind, dont imply fun.
If players aint prepared to go fetch the items themselves, what are they planning to do with the top end items when they buy them ? There isnt even a SW/Ogri to stand near the AH and show off... join random players open games and show off how you didnt aquire the skills to go with the gear ?

... oh, and once again: There is a PRICE to sell items in the AH, you pay a FEE in real cash just to put up the item. There is also another fee if you do sell the item, and finally theres the double charge if you try cash in ( one from Bliz and the other from Paypal/3rd party that deals with the transfer ).
How someone else has fun shouldn't affect how you have fun. Sure in an idealistic video game world the best of the best in our games should rise to the top and be praised because their epeen is the size of the empire state building! Honestly though, none of that matters. An idealistic/nostalgic view of video games is in my opinion something that the community of gamers has to grow out of. The only question you should be asking yourself when playing a game is "Am I having fun?" If the answer to that question is yes than you're already a winner and what anyone else thinks or says doesn't matter.
 

Shamanic Rhythm

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PingoBlack said:
Erm ... Escapist?

Did you actual go and research Emperor Online?

That game includes a fully fledged Casino, not only an item auction house. So ... Did you research weather they lost classification due to actual game of chance?

Having an actual online casino built into game might be slightly different than Diablo 3. Of course, you just posted this in a way that implies exactly opposite.
Yes Escapist, how dare you simply report succinctly on the most relevant aspects of this story. Why did you not mention and research a game you probably would never had heard of? Your failure to mention it and its tangential relevance it shows you are clearly attempting to discredit Diablo III before it has even come out.
 

Levethian

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ASnogarD said:
Levethian said:
Quoted out of context I see no real reason why people with busy lives shouldn't be able to pay to enjoy the best items in the game. We don't all have 100's of hours to spend grinding.
This little comment made me realise there is something really sad going on here...

It basically says we should be allowed to buy items since our busy schedules dont allow us to grind for it, let me point out we are talking about a game... a form of entertainment that heavily features finding treasures and equipment as a reward mechanic, where is the fun if you could just buy the best stuff and show off your character to friends ?
Its like a buying a model, the fun is putting it together and the reward is showing off the result.
This system will be like being able to buy the model fully assembled, then showing it off... waste of money if you ask me.

People, games are suppose to be fun... its suppose to be fun looting and aquiring the items in game, suppose to be fun exploring the world... words like grind, dont imply fun.
If players aint prepared to go fetch the items themselves, what are they planning to do with the top end items when they buy them ? There isnt even a SW/Ogri to stand near the AH and show off... join random players open games and show off how you didnt aquire the skills to go with the gear ?

... oh, and once again: There is a PRICE to sell items in the AH, you pay a FEE in real cash just to put up the item. There is also another fee if you do sell the item, and finally theres the double charge if you try cash in ( one from Bliz and the other from Paypal/3rd party that deals with the transfer ).
I agree with you - I certainly won't be buying items.

As fun as the gameplay will be, there's always an aspect of grinding. It's natural for games that employ random loot-drops. I see no inherent evil in being able to buy an item instead of finding it.

I think the listing fee will stop it becoming swarmed with awful items - Essential to encourage discretion when selling.
 

Logan Westbrook

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Feb 21, 2008
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The Lunatic said:
I really would not mind seeing the removal of this feature.
if Blizzard removed it, other people would just make a third party auction house like what has happened so many times before in other games.

Hell, even recently I've seen a few people spending a generous sum of cash on end-game gear in World of Warcraft.

The sites? ran by the same people who sell gold and leveling services.


At least this way the money goes to the developer instead of a small company who's sole intention it seems is ruining a games economy.



OT: I don't see how it can be considered gambling in the first place.

its not like you pay X and randomly get an item. You see what is up for sale, then you make a conscious decision on whether you want that particular item or not.

if you do buy it, congratulations, you just spent money on a virtual item.

if not, congratulations, you might have enough money to buy groceries or pay bills.
 

Xanthious

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Gee it sure would be horrible to have a version of D3 floating around out there without the plague that is the real money auction house. I mean just imagine if something like that found it's way to the seedy underbelly of the internet like torrent sites and such. Yeah that would just be terrible.

Kalezian said:
if Blizzard removed it, other people would just make a third party auction house like what has happened so many times before in other games.

Hell, even recently I've seen a few people spending a generous sum of cash on end-game gear in World of Warcraft.

The sites? ran by the same people who sell gold and leveling services.


At least this way the money goes to the developer instead of a small company who's sole intention it seems is ruining a games economy.
So you are saying it's ok for Blizzard to just shit all over the in game economy out of the gate as long as they are getting paid for it? Because you pretty much admit introducing real money transactions is harmful to the game's economy.

The thing is the real money transactions killed the D2 economy. It won't matter who is the entity running them they are still have no place in the game. Blizzard has shown rather than take the high road and find an actual solution to combat them they would rather take the spineless way out and admit defeat to the gold farmers as so long as it means they get a piece of the action in the process.

You actually think that this is going to hurt the people running the real money sites? Not a chance. If anything they will be more prosperous than ever now that there is absolutely zero stigma placed on real money transactions. Blizzard has more or less gave them a big thumbs up to move their businesses right into the game just so long as they give Blizzard a cut of their earnings.

Real money transactions are going to be king in D3. Gold will be so massively inflated that you will have no choice but to use real money if you want to participate in the in game economy. This is even to say that there is going to be anything worth buying with gold at all. Likely nobody is going to choose to sell high level items for over inflated gold when they could get actual money.

Bottom line is this, just because Blizzard is the one shitting on the in game economy and not third party sites doesn't make it right. It just means Blizz has admitted they are impotent to police their own games and have chosen to make a quick buck off of it.
 

Grospoliner

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Baresark said:
I have to say, I'm not South Korean, but I wouldn't mind seeing this feature removed either. Stuff like this is annoying. I hate the game balance being ruined by being able to buy significantly better items with real money. This is going to ruin the competitive MP because no one is going to want to play against anyone else who may have just bought better items, making it that much easier for them to win.

On the other hand, I agree with Blizzard that there is no risk and therefore shouldn't be considered gambling. But, as a few people around here are familiar with, South Korea did open the first ever clinic to treat video game addiction. I'm not surprised they would take this stance at all.
That happens regardless of the ability to buy or sell items as a game feature because players do it in-game anyway.
 

TitsMcGee1804

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Better to lose the transaction cut than lose both the transaction cut AND the game sales...cant get a transaction fee if no transactions are taking place! I say remove the feature if they are not letting them implement it and classify the game. But blizzard will not, because they will see the game as not being 100% done, therefore they would rather not release it

Its a nice sentiment, but i would imagine 95% of korean gamers wouldnt give a monkeys if the AH was in or out, swallow your pride and release the game without it!

OT: All the people saying that people buying gear will imbalance the game need to see the bigger picture, most ppl who would use the money AH would probably use the 3rd parties anyway if there wasnt an AH, so in essence at least we are getting a properly moderated and safe one.

I realise there are better ways to overcome the 3rd party black market, but this system has the most benefit-ee's, and the only ones losing out are the shady item farmers

edit: benefit-ees terrible english...benefactors? winners! :D
 

Xanthious

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TitsMcGee1804 said:
OT: All the people saying that people buying gear will imbalance the game need to see the bigger picture, most ppl who would use the money AH would probably use the 3rd parties anyway if there wasnt an AH, so in essence at least we are getting a properly moderated and safe one.

I realise there are better ways to overcome the 3rd party black market, but this system has the most benefit-ee's, and the only ones losing out are the shady item farmers
No no no! Before there were certain risks and stigmas associated with buying real money gear. It might have been duped or you could have actions taken against your account and so on. It was something that was frowned upon and bad for the game. Now it's an actual part of the game and now there is no stigma or risk involved and you can bet real money transactions will be king if you want to participate in the D3 economy. The end result is going to be gold being next to worthless and the real money economy will be the only viable choice

People can say they won't buy things for real money but when it's the only avenue available they will be left with little choice. Of course even if they aren't buying doesn't mean they will pass up the opportunity to make a quick 10 bucks or more if they find a high end item. This will lead to people being presented with two options if they want gear. Farm it or buy it with real money. High end gear will not be available for gold. You can count on that.

Having Blizzard pulling the strings all of a sudden doesn't magically make it stop being detrimental to the game. It just means Blizzard sold out to the gold farmers because they are either too lazy too greedy or too impotent (likely all three) to police their own game. It will now though be even more harmful to the games economy because now there is no risk or stigma involved and will be rampant.

Now as to the gold farmers, they won't be losing out on a damn thing. They will just move their businesses from their websites to inside the game. They will still have warehouses full of Chinese poor farming away day and night and now they will have better exposure than ever and are already set up to prosper the most of anyone but Blizzard. Where as before people had to go look for their sites now they will already be inside the game and you likely won't be able to tell if you are buying an item from a college student or gold farmer.

Bottom line is that real money transactions killed the economy in D2 and it will be just as harmful to D3. Just becaues Blizz is making their cut off of it doesn't change that at their core real money transactions are poison, and have no place, in video games.
 

Farther than stars

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To be honest it sounds like gambling in the same way that investing in any market is gambling. If South Korea allows for private investment, then it should also allow for its cyber form.
 

Fappy

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Satsuki666 said:
Levethian said:
The Lunatic said:
I really would not mind seeing the removal of this feature.
Only for it to be added by dubious & numerous 3rd parties. Meh.
Some of us feel that joining the gold farmers and taking a cut of their profit is not the best way to beat them.
Agreed. Blizzard took the easy way out.
 

Logan Westbrook

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Kalezian said:
its not like you pay X and randomly get an item. You see what is up for sale, then you make a conscious decision on whether you want that particular item or not.
Except for you know that part where you can buy gold for actual cash and then use that gambling feature to buy a randomly generated item in hopes that it is something good.
 

LJJ1991

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I don't think I'm going to mind the feature. I'm going to love Diablo 3, but I'm not gonna spend any extra money on it. I can't really classify it as a traditional "microtransaction" system because the player can make money, too. Now, I'm concerned about how Blizzard is going to allow use of the money made from the auction house. If I'm not able to take it and bank it, I'm going to have a problem with it. If all I can use it on are other items and WoW subscriptions, it seems pretty pointless.

As for the "gambling" issue, I can't say I agree with South Korea. It isn't gambling because the player isn't putting any money down, on the table. They're just killing things.

Rack said:
Time is money, risking time to for a chance to get money absolutely is gambling.
As for this comment, if you're playing Diablo 3, you're playing a video game. A video game is there for enjoyment (unless you're a game reviewer). If you really believe what you say, then you would never waste your time playing a video game, you'd be doing something that makes you money. That doesn't mean some people won't play Diablo 3 for the sole reason of making money, but they're morons.
 

Atmos Duality

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OMGIllithan said:
The economy will be fine. Like Mr. Funk said, the real money market existed in D2 but people were still able to trade in game without touching the market if they didn't want (I know I did). The majority of people likely aren't going to use this feature and will be looking to trade the same way you want to.
Maybe it will, maybe it won't.
I don't care either way. I won't be playing Diablo 3.

Also, the more "farmers" there are then the better prices are for everyone. The only people who are losing in this transaction are the people who thought they could make a semblance of an income from farming virtual items from a video game.
Sigh. The "point" is always ignored or misplaced...
I'll just say this: It seems nonsensical to me to play a game whose primarily selling point is the grind. I cannot find any rational appeal in it beyond skinner and addiction models.
I say this, because the "market" wouldn't exist if there wasn't so much grind.

As another point unrelated to your post, who cares if people get a "competitive" advantage? Diablo is a cooperative game with a not serious and not balanced pvp component.
Then you've had the incredible luck to not have to deal with griefers and hackers in Diablo 2.
I always found it to be an incredible irony that I wanted to block or ban most of the players I encountered online because the vast majority of the ones I encountered were spambots, griefers, or assholes.
And I played Diablo 2 online for some unhealthy amount of time despite that...well, I don't have the patience for that bullshit anymore.

(Before someone says it: Yeah, you *could* password-protect your game, but now you're just playing Single Player online, which DEFEATS THE PURPOSE OF PLAYING MULTIPLAYER IN THE FIRST PLACE.)

If you join a game with someone who bought their way to victory than great! They'll be helping make your group's adventure that much easier to manage.
I hate feeling useless when I play games. I hate being nothing but an exp leech.
I hate jogging uselessly behind the party doing nothing because my damage output is less than half of the guy with the duped broken-ass Runeword. And I especially hate it when they join my party, and then ***** at ME for "slowing them down".

And I've been in that position many times in Diablo 2 precisely because people DID buy power when I did not.
 

Ashoten

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Semantics!!!!!!!!

There is money involved and there is random chance involved. It's gambling. Because the potential payout changes based on what random item is generated. Which means you can calculate the amount of money you stand to make on the auction for a certain item against the time it will take for that item to come up. That's gambling. Blizzard will adjust the chance for popular items dropping as to keep the auctions flowing. This all sounds like gambling to me.
 

Rack

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Eric the Orange said:
Rack said:
John Funk said:
It happened all the time in Diablo 2, too. It just wasn't official.

Nothing has changed other than Blizzard actually making money off of it and it being less shady.
That's the same reasoning behind legalising Cannabis. And Ecstacy. And murder. Nothing's changed except rather than treading into murky waters it's accessible right from the game interface. Same thing happening only massively more prevalent.
Wait, wait murder? I can agree with the legalizing drugs comparison, but murder is a whole different thing. The argument behind legalizing drugs is that they are a victimless crime, and by legalization they could be better controlled and have safety guidelines put in place. So yes that is very similar to this. But murder, I don't even see where you draw the comparison. I've never heard of anyone arguing for the legalization of murder, and I don't even know what kind of argument there would be for it.
Yeah, Murder. The only point being made is that it happens so you may as well make money off it. That can apply to almost anything. That it's "victimless" is not even referenced, if it were then it would be a different point entirely. But if you want to bundle that in then counterfeiting money is a good comparison. It happens so why not allow it? If you want to lower the stakes then why not allow players to just take momey from the bank whenever they want in Monopoly?

However you slice it "It happens anyway" simply is not a reason because it applies to virtually anything you would want to restrict.

Rack said:
Time is money, risking time to for a chance to get money absolutely is gambling.
As for this comment, if you're playing Diablo 3, you're playing a video game. A video game is there for enjoyment (unless you're a game reviewer). If you really believe what you say, then you would never waste your time playing a video game, you'd be doing something that makes you money. That doesn't mean some people won't play Diablo 3 for the sole reason of making money, but they're morons.[/quote]

True but morons is the demographic gambling legislation is there to protect. In all seriousness though these virtual slot machines are already compelling enough even before you add in the potential to win real money, there are at least hundreds of thousands of people who play WoW long past the point it has any entertainment value, the same is sure to be true of Diablo 3.
 

Eric the Orange

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Rack said:
Yeah, Murder. The only point being made is that it happens so you may as well make money off it. That can apply to almost anything. That it's "victimless" is not even referenced, if it were then it would be a different point entirely. But if you want to bundle that in then counterfeiting money is a good comparison. It happens so why not allow it? If you want to lower the stakes then why not allow players to just take momey from the bank whenever they want in Monopoly?

However you slice it "It happens anyway" simply is not a reason because it applies to virtually anything you would want to restrict.
I wouldn't really call counterfeiting "victimless". The two outcomes I see from that is either the fake money can't be used again, and thus it comes down to simply stealing (in which the victim is the seller). Or the counterfeits are so good they go unnoticed, which would cause inflation, which would lower the value of everyone money, and thus make them the victims.

I just don't see the inherent problem in selling virtual things for real world money. As long as both the buyer and seller are fully aware of what they are doing then what is the harm?
 

weirdee

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By this definition, the very act of killing any mob in a variety of games is gambling, and we should ban all mmos.
 

Xanthious

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Eric the Orange said:
I just don't see the inherent problem in selling virtual things for real world money. As long as both the buyer and seller are fully aware of what they are doing then what is the harm?
Well maybe the Diablo 3 players can tell you when they try to buy items with gold and realize that even a mediocre item costs thousands upon thousands of gold because the real money transactions have devalued gold in the game to such an extent it may as well be useless because anything worth buying will be sold for real money and anything for sale with gold is a very small step above junk.

Introducing a free and clear real money means of buying items is going to shoe horn everyone into real money transactions whether they like it or not if they want to be part of the D3 economy. Despite Blizz's claims there will not be a viable gold economy. If one should happen to pop up the prices will be so inflated that you could never hope to use it without buying gold and then your back at using real money.

The only thing gold will be able to be used for is for buying from NPCs. The in game player driven economy will revolve, in one fashion or another, around real money transactions.
 

Atmos Duality

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LJJ1991 said:
As for the "gambling" issue, I can't say I agree with South Korea. It isn't gambling because the player isn't putting any money down, on the table. They're just killing things.

Rack said:
Time is money, risking time to for a chance to get money absolutely is gambling.
As for this comment, if you're playing Diablo 3, you're playing a video game. A video game is there for enjoyment (unless you're a game reviewer). If you really believe what you say, then you would never waste your time playing a video game, you'd be doing something that makes you money. That doesn't mean some people won't play Diablo 3 for the sole reason of making money, but they're morons.
His comment is more true than you think: every item that gets sold on the Auction House?
They wouldn't have value if not for the average time commitment required to get them; so from this, we establish that TIME is the primary metric of value; and the payout of that value, can be in in-game gold, or real world currency (and for the sake of the argument, we'll just focus on the latter).

We also know that the item drops are:
1) Random
2) Very rare (factor for the time metric)
3) NOT GUARANTEED

And it very much becomes comparable to gambling, which might I remind you, is considered first and foremost a form of ENTERTAINMENT; a "game of chance". Therefore, the point about the player doing something else "because it's a game, not gambling" is nonsensical.

So instead of directly betting money, player bets time to potentially WIN MONEY.
However, because the payoff's value is DIRECTLY PROPORTIONAL TO TIME AND CARRIES REAL-CURRENCY VALUE, then in this instance, we can equate time to money. If this were not true, then rarer items wouldn't carry a higher price coefficient (because there would be a more common/economical substitute good).

If Diablo 3 isn't an overt form of gambling, then it certainly pushes the boundaries for the classification.
 

Rack

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Eric the Orange said:
I wouldn't really call counterfeiting "victimless". The two outcomes I see from that is either the fake money can't be used again, and thus it comes down to simply stealing (in which the victim is the seller). Or the counterfeits are so good they go unnoticed, which would cause inflation, which would lower the value of everyone money, and thus make them the victims.

I just don't see the inherent problem in selling virtual things for real world money. As long as both the buyer and seller are fully aware of what they are doing then what is the harm?
Inflation. Hmm, that rings a bell somehow...
 

Eric the Orange

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Apr 29, 2008
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Xanthious said:
I think you mean Diablo 2, but that's besides the point.

True enough I can see that happening if the real money AH is widely embraced. Most people would rather get real money than in game money probably. I personally have no plan on using either AH so I guess my opinion does not count for much. But I still don't see the harm. Worst case scenario everyone uses the real money AH, and then uses the money from it to buy other things on it. So it's like a taxed virtual item trading system. Though I wouldn't be surprised if the backlash over the real money AH makes it used less and thus the normal AH more viable. I guess I can see a victim in the person who does not want to participate in the real money AH, but still want's the virtual items, but does not want to spend the time to farm them.
 

metal mustache

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what do you mean it will hurt blizzard? Aren't they going to make enough bloody money already? Its like saying that only getting $60 for my used legos would hurt me.
 

SonofSeth

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Xanthious said:
No no no! Before there were certain risks and stigmas associated with buying real money gear. It might have been duped or you could have actions taken against your account and so on. It was something that was frowned upon and bad for the game. Now it's an actual part of the game and now there is no stigma or risk involved and you can bet real money transactions will be king if you want to participate in the D3 economy. The end result is going to be gold being next to worthless and the real money economy will be the only viable choice

People can say they won't buy things for real money but when it's the only avenue available they will be left with little choice. Of course even if they aren't buying doesn't mean they will pass up the opportunity to make a quick 10 bucks or more if they find a high end item. This will lead to people being presented with two options if they want gear. Farm it or buy it with real money. High end gear will not be available for gold. You can count on that.

Having Blizzard pulling the strings all of a sudden doesn't magically make it stop being detrimental to the game. It just means Blizzard sold out to the gold farmers because they are either too lazy too greedy or too impotent (likely all three) to police their own game. It will now though be even more harmful to the games economy because now there is no risk or stigma involved and will be rampant.

Now as to the gold farmers, they won't be losing out on a damn thing. They will just move their businesses from their websites to inside the game. They will still have warehouses full of Chinese poor farming away day and night and now they will have better exposure than ever and are already set up to prosper the most of anyone but Blizzard. Where as before people had to go look for their sites now they will already be inside the game and you likely won't be able to tell if you are buying an item from a college student or gold farmer.

Bottom line is that real money transactions killed the economy in D2 and it will be just as harmful to D3. Just becaues Blizz is making their cut off of it doesn't change that at their core real money transactions are poison, and have no place, in video games.
We can't know if this will work or not, we have no point of comparison to make such a claim. You base your whole argument on your experience with D2, but this isn't completely same as D2. D3 has better money sinks, crafting is random and costs gold, gold will not be produced indefinitely, it will be syfened out of the economy by additional game mechanics that weren't in place in D2.

It probably will be wonky at the beginning until the market sets the values of gold and items, and even if there is still problems, Blizzard can tweak values of gold sinks to be more in line with what the market demands.

Maybe I'm wrong, and maybe this kind of system has been tried before and failed, but I don't know about it.
You just have to remember this isn't just an item shop, or just a gold selling operation, it's a full functional ebay inside the game, and only way to be sure in how it will play out is to wait and see. I doubt even Blizzard can predict with any certainty how exactly this will play out when the gaming masses put it to the test.


Have your opinions and declare them as loud as you want, it would just be appreciated if you thought about it for a second, rather than just copy pasting your existing biases.
 

Aeshi

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Bullshit.

Under that retarded logic maybe selling a car should be illegal because there's a "chance" that the manufacturing plants will shut down due to a software error or something.

And to all the prats who are going "WELL IT IS GAMBLING HURRDURR COOL TO BASH":

a) Even if the feature was removed people would still be selling items for real money anyway, something you might have known if you had actually played Diablo II for any amount of time on multiplayer.

b) How is "getting an item by buying it" really all that worse/"skilless" than "getting an item by virtue of being the lucky 1/1000 it drops for?"
 

OMGIllithan

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Atmos Duality said:
OMGIllithan said:
The economy will be fine. Like Mr. Funk said, the real money market existed in D2 but people were still able to trade in game without touching the market if they didn't want (I know I did). The majority of people likely aren't going to use this feature and will be looking to trade the same way you want to.
Maybe it will, maybe it won't.
I don't care either way. I won't be playing Diablo 3.
Suit yourself, I'm still playing and its going to be fun.

Atmos Duality said:
Also, the more "farmers" there are then the better prices are for everyone. The only people who are losing in this transaction are the people who thought they could make a semblance of an income from farming virtual items from a video game.
Sigh. The "point" is always ignored or misplaced...
I'll just say this: It seems nonsensical to me to play a game whose primarily selling point is the grind. I cannot find any rational appeal in it beyond skinner and addiction models.
I say this, because the "market" wouldn't exist if there wasn't so much grind.
Diablo 2 also boiled down to a grind in the end. Does that mean it wasn't fun before then? Absolutely not. Unfortunately the only way to give a game more self sustaining content after the life of the game should have met its end is to add grindy type features. Games aren't meant to be played forever. Quitting after putting 100+ hours into a game because its a grind in the end game doesn't make the game bad.

Atmos Duality said:
As another point unrelated to your post, who cares if people get a "competitive" advantage? Diablo is a cooperative game with a not serious and not balanced pvp component.
Then you've had the incredible luck to not have to deal with griefers and hackers in Diablo 2.
I always found it to be an incredible irony that I wanted to block or ban most of the players I encountered online because the vast majority of the ones I encountered were spambots, griefers, or assholes.
And I played Diablo 2 online for some unhealthy amount of time despite that...well, I don't have the patience for that bullshit anymore.

(Before someone says it: Yeah, you *could* password-protect your game, but now you're just playing Single Player online, which DEFEATS THE PURPOSE OF PLAYING MULTIPLAYER IN THE FIRST PLACE.)
In my opinion, if someone is an asshole, they're an asshole no matter how decked out they are. Unfortunately, the internet tends to do that to some people. However, based on how well Blizzard manages their online communities, I have faith that there will be some cool people to meet and play with out there. Either way, that point isn't really Blizzard's fault.

Atmos Duality said:
If you join a game with someone who bought their way to victory than great! They'll be helping make your group's adventure that much easier to manage.
I hate feeling useless when I play games. I hate being nothing but an exp leech.
I hate jogging uselessly behind the party doing nothing because my damage output is less than half of the guy with the duped broken-ass Runeword. And I especially hate it when they join my party, and then ***** at ME for "slowing them down".

And I've been in that position many times in Diablo 2 precisely because people DID buy power when I did not.
Its too early to say since so few people have seen the game so far, but I have a feeling that D3 is going to be a little better balanced in the end game than D2. Again, some people are assholes and it sucks. Its not Blizzard or the person's gear's fault. Though, I tend to have a positive outlook on things (its much more fun that way!).
 

Siyano_v1legacy

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I'm afraid for Quebecker, our law prevent some price winning to be won outside of our little province, I wonder how is that dealed about
 

4173

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Huh, I think I just got it. It's a problem if you actually play the game. For me, the story was done primarily by myself or with people I knew.

Multi-player with random people was mostly Cow or Baal, or maybe rescuing Hell Anya. In none of those situations do I mind if my teammate bought his items.
 

Carboncrown

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I'd like to remind people about a few things since this always comes up and people say it like Blizz betrayed them or committed a cardinal sin or something. It's fine if you wanted a more PvP oriented (or grimdark) game but...
Baresark said:
I have to say, I'm not South Korean, but I wouldn't mind seeing this feature removed either. Stuff like this is annoying. I hate the game balance being ruined by being able to buy significantly better items with real money. This is going to ruin the competitive MP because no one is going to want to play against anyone else who may have just bought better items, making it that much easier for them to win.

*snip*
From day 1. Blizz made it clear that they dont care about PvP or making D3 an e-sport.
It's 1) A PvE game 2) A trading game. Both experiences(granted, IMO) are only enhanced by adding the optional real-money AH.

Plus, there's always hardcore, which obviously has no real-money AH.
ASnogarD said:
*snippety*
Its like a buying a model, the fun is putting it together and the reward is showing off the result.
This system will be like being able to buy the model fully assembled, then showing it off... waste of money if you ask me.


*snap*

... oh, and once again: There is a PRICE to sell items in the AH, you pay a FEE in real cash just to put up the item. There is also another fee if you do sell the item, and finally theres the double charge if you try cash in ( one from Bliz and the other from Paypal/3rd party that deals with the transfer ).
You'll only benefit from people throwing their money at the developer, whether or not it ruins their experience.

And more importantly, all those fees are of no loss to you, if you only use the monthly free chance to put your items up for sale.

EDIT: fix'd misquote, sorry about that.
 

Atmos Duality

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Aeshi said:
Bullshit.
And to all the prats who are going "WELL IT IS GAMBLING HURRDURR COOL TO BASH":
Question: Are you still a "prat" if you used logic and evidence instead of a mass-ad-hominem to support your claim?

Because a certain man's gotta know.
 

Aeshi

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And what "logic and evidence" would that be? I haven't seen anything mildly resembling either.
 

jyork89

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I don't see what the issue behind this is. I mean people make the conscious choice to spend their money. While others can get the same thing by investing time. So whats the problem? I mean DLC on the other hand is people have to pay for an advantage which is not available unless you pay. In this case the advantage is available either way and the question is whether you want to spend time or money on obtaining it. Compared to DLC this is far more fair and justifiable.
 

Atmos Duality

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Aeshi said:
And what "logic and evidence" would that be? I haven't seen anything mildly resembling either.
There are several arguments here you're calling out, but aren't actually refuting.

I'm just saying, it's better to point out the flaws in their specific arguments rather than just making a poor analogy and then insulting everyone who doesn't share the same opinion as you.
 

LJJ1991

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May 6, 2011
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Atmos Duality said:
LJJ1991 said:
As for the "gambling" issue, I can't say I agree with South Korea. It isn't gambling because the player isn't putting any money down, on the table. They're just killing things.

Rack said:
Time is money, risking time to for a chance to get money absolutely is gambling.
As for this comment, if you're playing Diablo 3, you're playing a video game. A video game is there for enjoyment (unless you're a game reviewer). If you really believe what you say, then you would never waste your time playing a video game, you'd be doing something that makes you money. That doesn't mean some people won't play Diablo 3 for the sole reason of making money, but they're morons.
His comment is more true than you think: every item that gets sold on the Auction House?
They wouldn't have value if not for the average time commitment required to get them; so from this, we establish that TIME is the primary metric of value; and the payout of that value, can be in in-game gold, or real world currency (and for the sake of the argument, we'll just focus on the latter).

We also know that the item drops are:
1) Random
2) Very rare (factor for the time metric)
3) NOT GUARANTEED

And it very much becomes comparable to gambling, which might I remind you, is considered first and foremost a form of ENTERTAINMENT; a "game of chance". Therefore, the point about the player doing something else "because it's a game, not gambling" is nonsensical.

So instead of directly betting money, player bets time to potentially WIN MONEY.
However, because the payoff's value is DIRECTLY PROPORTIONAL TO TIME AND CARRIES REAL-CURRENCY VALUE, then in this instance, we can equate time to money. If this were not true, then rarer items wouldn't carry a higher price coefficient (because there would be a more common/economical substitute good).

If Diablo 3 isn't an overt form of gambling, then it certainly pushes the boundaries for the classification.
By that logic, any game with an auction house would be considered gambling. The only difference between Diablo 3 and any other game is that Diablo 3 uses real life currency. There is a similar thing for EVE online, except it's a player made corporation that runs it as opposed to the actual company.

http://cogdev.net/blink/

In this, you put down in game cash and bid on an item. If you lose the bid, you lose the money. There is a RISK involved, but time is not a risk. Even though that uses in game cash, it's closer to gambling than Diablo 3's auction house. One could argue that time is a risk only if whatever they're using their time for is the only form of income they have. And, as I stated, anyone who uses Diablo 3 as their only type of income, is a moron...
 

Throwitawaynow

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Aug 29, 2010
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kebab4you said:
A job in real life always got a set amount of money you get from it at the end of the day, this do not.
No, it really doesn't. Most sales people work on commission which means how much they are paid is dependent on how many sales they made. People who fish for a living are dependent on how many fish they catch. Lots of jobs have bonuses that are not a set amount of money.
 

Atmos Duality

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LJJ1991 said:
By that logic, any game with an auction house would be considered gambling.
Legally speaking, yes. If the items have real-world money values. It very well could.
The Asian online gaming market has its own sub-culture of social games; many of which utilize gambling under the pretense of grind (I recall a game where you found locked chests, but could only purchase keys with real money. If you unlocked the most chests of anyone on the server at the end of the day, you got a prize. Sickeningly effective psychology.)

To go off on a brief tangent here:
In its purest form; money is the closest thing we have as a social placeholder for time.
The amount of man-hours you put in to get that money vs the amount of man-hours in goods and services you could potentially get out of it.

The only difference between Diablo 3 and any other game is that Diablo 3 uses real life currency. There is a similar thing for EVE online, except it's a player made corporation that runs it as opposed to the actual company.

http://cogdev.net/blink/

In this, you put down in game cash and bid on an item. If you lose the bid, you lose the money. There is a RISK involved, but time is not a risk. Even though that uses in game cash, it's closer to gambling than Diablo 3's auction house.
Yes, I'd say it is. And as fascinating as EVE Online is, this in no way detracts from my argument for Diablo 3.

One could argue that time is a risk only if whatever they're using their time for is the only form of income they have.
By that logic, only professional gamblers can lose money in casinos...but that's beside the point.

There are two points of controversy:
1) The player isn't putting down real money on a bet when they grind; they directly bid time (which, we equated to money)
2) The payout is in real money, and the metric of value for that item is time. Whether this qualifies as money spent on a service (the player providing the item as the result of grind) or gambling is iffy here, because it skirts the lines of both.

But the problem I have, is that the main metric of value for any given item is directly derived from the statistical averaged time (and the immediate demand for that item) it would take to acquire* that item normally, and that the drop is explicitly RANDOM no matter what you do (so it ALWAYS boils down to a game of chance).

These sorts of grind-games resemble gambling on principle for that very reason, except that instead of bidding cash, you bid time.

(*and even then it might be statistically impossible to acquire without trading/buying; I tried for years to get a Tiamat's Rebuke in Diablo 2 for my collection, and never had one drop legitimately. Most long-time Diablo 2 players have NEVER seen a native Zod rune drop. I never saw a single SoJ legitimately drop for me from 1.10 onward; a good 5 years)

And, as I stated, anyone who uses Diablo 3 as their only type of income, is a moron...
As much as I agree with that statement, I also know there are gold farmers and botters that have made a fortune. It's a sad world we live in, really.
 

Setch Dreskar

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Mar 28, 2011
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Baresark said:
I have to say, I'm not South Korean, but I wouldn't mind seeing this feature removed either. Stuff like this is annoying. I hate the game balance being ruined by being able to buy significantly better items with real money. This is going to ruin the competitive MP because no one is going to want to play against anyone else who may have just bought better items, making it that much easier for them to win.

On the other hand, I agree with Blizzard that there is no risk and therefore shouldn't be considered gambling. But, as a few people around here are familiar with, South Korea did open the first ever clinic to treat video game addiction. I'm not surprised they would take this stance at all.
It was noticed in one of the iterations for Blizzard's real-money auction house you have to pay blizzard money to first list it (which is non-refundable) Blizzard takes out a fee for the win, and then takes out another fee to transfer it to cash if you should wish. Personally I haven't paid attention much to Diablo 3, but a good video to check out is Total Biscuit's Mailbox: August 1st, 2011 where he goes into more detail.

Which qualifies as a risk, since you risk losing money rather then gaining it because of the initial fee you must pay.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GBrESZJlNvQ&feature=sh_e_se&list=SL [Dunno if video linking is shunned on or not]
 

Yokai

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Gee, Blizzard, maybe this is another sign that the thousands of people complaining about the ridiculous features in D3 might actually be right after all!

Yes, I'm still bitter.
 

kebab4you

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Rationalization said:
kebab4you said:
A job in real life always got a set amount of money you get from it at the end of the day, this do not.
No, it really doesn't. Most sales people work on commission which means how much they are paid is dependent on how many sales they made. People who fish for a living are dependent on how many fish they catch. Lots of jobs have bonuses that are not a set amount of money.
Okey you got me there however I would like to point out the brief moment I worked as a salesman I still had a set amount of money that I got in each month, if I sold I got more in.
 

theultimateend

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Baresark said:
I have to say, I'm not South Korean, but I wouldn't mind seeing this feature removed either. Stuff like this is annoying. I hate the game balance being ruined by being able to buy significantly better items with real money. This is going to ruin the competitive MP because no one is going to want to play against anyone else who may have just bought better items, making it that much easier for them to win.

On the other hand, I agree with Blizzard that there is no risk and therefore shouldn't be considered gambling. But, as a few people around here are familiar with, South Korea did open the first ever clinic to treat video game addiction. I'm not surprised they would take this stance at all.
Me too! Someone force blizzard to remove it so that it'll go back to just being on Ebay and every other non-regulated website on the internet!

This-will-fix-everything.
 

Azmael Silverlance

Pirate Warlord!
Oct 20, 2009
756
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While South Korea is a huge gaming market with great players its not that huge and its that lucrative. Its just one small country in a very very big world with much bigger countries still.

So its not that big of a blow to remove the feature. They fixed some blood stuff before for germany`s SC2 i think. Wouldnt be hard to remove their action house.
 

PingoBlack

Searching for common sense ...
Aug 6, 2011
322
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0
Shamanic Rhythm said:
Yes Escapist, how dare you simply report succinctly on the most relevant aspects of this story. Why did you not mention and research a game you probably would never had heard of? Your failure to mention it and its tangential relevance it shows you are clearly attempting to discredit Diablo III before it has even come out.
Research is important in journalism.

What I was saying is that Escapist failed to research badly written article in Korean Times, they decided to just copy/paste a copy/paste.

I spent 5 minutes to learn the other game in subject, Emperor Online, has actual in game gambling casino together with an AH.

I just expect much more research from Escapist. Gaming journalism is bad as it is, main stream media like Korean Times is even worse on subject of this kind of news. But if you do not want high standards, your call.
 

Logan Westbrook

Transform, Roll Out, Etc
Feb 21, 2008
17,672
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0
Well I only read page one and think most people posting on here don't really understand the AH to begin with.

I may be wrong but, I doubt the AH will be cash money only. I would assume YOU (Being the one wanting to sell the item) would decide whether to try to post the item for either In-Game Money, or for cold hard electronic cash. Obviously something set in the AH at a stupid price wouldn't sell, so basically it will be run off of rarity rather than it being everything in the game sold on a platter for the masses who can pay.

So that just means that insanely cool drop that you ninja'd would be worth maybe $5 bucks on the market since maybe you cannot use it for your class. Which in turn would bump off 5 bucks from what you payed for the game, AND some desperate player got something they really wanted at the same time. Blizzard makes a little cut to keep paying for the servers, and everyone is happy.

When I read about so may people just flipping out about something that I honestly doubt will even come into play for anyone that isn't end game/ just plain crazy about D3, my brain starts to throb from the insane misunderstanding of what the true intentions are. Businesses need to keep doing business, and this one actually wants you to turn your enjoyment into a little pocket cash for you and them... Capitalism people.

Yet look, if you want to keep wasting away hours being ignorant to how much money it costs to create and run something of this scale (Aside from the understanding of how much money has been made in the past or future, look at Nintendo now. When it's good it is good, and likewise with the bad.) in order to keep a company (and its employees jobs) secure, safe and growing, I have nothing to say that will change your mind. And that is that.

I don't believe preconceived notions of something that primarily seems to only threaten those scared of Buy-to-Win content hold any water. Remember this is Diablo... Most gear has level limits to begin with. And I think Blizzard has enough understanding on how to satisfy its many many players. It's not like this was a title mocked up within a year by people with no experience with online offerings. Chances being, if there is a in game store, it will only offer nominal non gameplay areas (skins and the like). And that is just a part of PC gaming these days. Deal with it

I for one, AM in favor of the AH as I described it above. This is the understanding I have after reading the info I have been given. Also I believe possibly receiving something of monetary value from the hard work I put into a title, is an added bonus to my enjoyment of a title, not a burden.

You could always (Would you) kindly(?) choose not to play if such a system triggers the Ayn Rand in your psyche. Well unless Blizzard turns the world into.... ITEM FARMERS! (Bum bum BUUUUUUMMMMM)

I just feel at the end of the day, this is just a game. Something to enjoy, not build a life from playing. If you spend a fair amount of time on any title, or say watch a movie, chances are you will never see a return. So to bring up the point of time being the risk, you must have a time machine to give back all the hours you wasted doing anything you enjoy. Under that understanding, life itself is a gamble. And life is unfair for not paying us money for each minute we spend gambling each breathe. Some of you act as if businesses pay you to use them each time. Or that maybe my cable box prints money for each minute it wastes trying to entertain me, I guess maybe I just haven't found the we-pay-for-your-time compartment that you all have found. I must be senile...

Surely this system won't work like a charm off the bat, kind of like anything in the world. Yet without anyone attempting to change the perspective, things would never change to begin with.
 

rapidoud

New member
Feb 1, 2008
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Hope it gets trashed.

Seriously, they're charging a sub and used common f2p mechanics? Blizzard surely hates its consumers. I might as well go play World of Tanks where I can pay to win.
 

John Funk

U.N. Owen Was Him?
Dec 20, 2005
20,364
0
0
Rack said:
John Funk said:
It happened all the time in Diablo 2, too. It just wasn't official.

Nothing has changed other than Blizzard actually making money off of it and it being less shady.
That's the same reasoning behind legalising Cannabis. And Ecstacy. And murder. Nothing's changed except rather than treading into murky waters it's accessible right from the game interface. Same thing happening only massively more prevalent.
And I think two of those three should be legalized as they don't hurt anyone but the person using them. The third is actively infringing on the rights of others.

Prohibition does not work in a game or in real life.
 

John Funk

U.N. Owen Was Him?
Dec 20, 2005
20,364
0
0
rapidoud said:
Hope it gets trashed.

Seriously, they're charging a sub and used common f2p mechanics? Blizzard surely hates its consumers. I might as well go play World of Tanks where I can pay to win.
Where did you read that they're charging a sub? Because you're wrong.
 

Baresark

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People have worried way too many times about what I said at the beginning of this story. I don't like games where you can buy power. Has it existed in previous Diablo games? Yes. Does that make it ok? No.

John Funk pointed out in a few posts up that prohibition doesn't work. That is true. I agree with what he said in his statement as well. People have pointed out that it's only PvE. Which is not true. There is a strong PvP element to the game and this will break the balance of that portion. So now you're saying, "WEll Baresark, you should probably not worry about that part of the game". Which is true, I would never bother with PvP on a Blizzard game. It's all equipment based, and since there isn't going to be different ways to build or play your character really (just like in WoW), it is all quite pointless.

Also, the auction house is just money grubbing on Blizzards part. You pay 3 fees to sell an item. One is a fee just to list the item that you do not get back if you do not sell it. It would be fine if that one cost in game currency, but to have it cost real money is ridiculous. Also, you can buy gold on the auction. It's funny, how many accounts go banned over this in WoW. It ruins the in game economy because it's based off of fiat money (gold that anyone can just sell more stuff or kill things to get, in endless supply) that cannot be stable.

A friend of mine debated with me on the merits of the auction. It was interesting. He ended up having to lie to me about what would and would not be available on the auction house as a way to win. He used tactics like, "if a rare item is appearing for too large an amount of money, they'll just change the drop frequency or sell some on their own on the auction house to bring the price down", both of which are completely untrue. The first would change the status of an item as a certain level of rarity and ruin the game balance even more if everyone could get it, and the second is something they outright stated they would not be doing.

There, that is my argument. I may still play the game, but you would never see me on PvP, maybe not even cooperative. And you better believe that I would play with a crack that allows me to play offline if I can find one.
 

Logan Westbrook

Transform, Roll Out, Etc
Feb 21, 2008
17,672
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0
Logan Westbrook said:
....There are questions over whether or not the cash auction house breaks South Korean gambling regulations....

....according to a report presented to the South Korean National Assembly, Diablo 3 breaks Article 1 of the Gaming Industry Promotion Law....
Sooo... some guys have speculated this might break the rule, but the South Korean National Assembly havent actually said a thing? This doesnt mean a thing atm then. People speculate all the time, and believe me: blizz wont remove this feature. Im pretty sure the money they will earn on this Real Money AH will over time FAR exceed the moneterial gains from copies sold in South Korea. Maybe they will do like they did in China with WoW: release a modified version of the game years later that satisfied the government.

Off Topic: My view on the Real Money AH:
Lets think for a few moments about this. It means others than you with more money to spare will get gear without luck. In short, theyre paying money to favor their odds. A bad model for a competetive multiplayer game. HEY, wait a minute, D3 isnt a competetive game! Its a team based game against AI! Yes, it does have PvP, but that was added by popular demand. Blizz have stated it will only be for fun, totally unbalanced and no loot rewards. So we have a non-competetive team game where you and your teamates can buy upgrades for real money if you get annoyed by luck based drops.

So all in all, it means you get better teamates (or crappy teamates become decent because of their gear). "Oh lawd, how I hate having good teamates in a multiplayer game!" :D
It also brings a new oppurtunity for players like me: Bosses can drop pizzas. They drop a bow my barbarian dont need, I put it on the real money AH for 5$, BAM! Frozen pizza for me. Best game idea ever.

"But I hate playing with people that are better than me!" you say? Dont fret! Youre not forced to play with anyone! This aint a realm like WoW, where you have to deal with the same people over and over. You can choose who to play with at all times.

Man, I should apply for blizz marketing :D

L10nH3ArT said:
Snippety snip
Took the words right out of my mouth :D
 

Rack

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Jan 18, 2008
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John Funk said:
Rack said:
John Funk said:
It happened all the time in Diablo 2, too. It just wasn't official.

Nothing has changed other than Blizzard actually making money off of it and it being less shady.
That's the same reasoning behind legalising Cannabis. And Ecstacy. And murder. Nothing's changed except rather than treading into murky waters it's accessible right from the game interface. Same thing happening only massively more prevalent.
And I think two of those three should be legalized as they don't hurt anyone but the person using them. The third is actively infringing on the rights of others.

Prohibition does not work in a game or in real life.
That?s a separate argument and one I touched on before. The issue is one of inflation with massively more high powered items and gold to go around and concentrating them on a certain group you create a two-tier system. Those who buy items will be significantly more powerful than those who don?t. This is what happens already to some degree but by making it legal and convenient you exacerbate the problem tremendously. The victims in this case are those who don?t enjoy having their effect on the game wholly marginalised.
 

Cid Silverwing

Paladin of The Light
Jul 27, 2008
3,134
0
0
Money, dear boy.

This trope is being played so straight that it shames even the most masculine heterosexuals of the world.
 

OMGIllithan

New member
Mar 28, 2009
51
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0
L10nH3ArT said:
Well I only read page one and think most people posting on here don't really understand the AH to begin with.

I may be wrong but, I doubt the AH will be cash money only. I would assume YOU (Being the one wanting to sell the item) would decide whether to try to post the item for either In-Game Money, or for cold hard electronic cash. Obviously something set in the AH at a stupid price wouldn't sell, so basically it will be run off of rarity rather than it being everything in the game sold on a platter for the masses who can pay.

So that just means that insanely cool drop that you ninja'd would be worth maybe $5 bucks on the market since maybe you cannot use it for your class. Which in turn would bump off 5 bucks from what you payed for the game, AND some desperate player got something they really wanted at the same time. Blizzard makes a little cut to keep paying for the servers, and everyone is happy.

When I read about so may people just flipping out about something that I honestly doubt will even come into play for anyone that isn't end game/ just plain crazy about D3, my brain starts to throb from the insane misunderstanding of what the true intentions are. Businesses need to keep doing business, and this one actually wants you to turn your enjoyment into a little pocket cash for you and them... Capitalism people.

Yet look, if you want to keep wasting away hours being ignorant to how much money it costs to create and run something of this scale (Aside from the understanding of how much money has been made in the past or future, look at Nintendo now. When it's good it is good, and likewise with the bad.) in order to keep a company (and its employees jobs) secure, safe and growing, I have nothing to say that will change your mind. And that is that.

I don't believe preconceived notions of something that primarily seems to only threaten those scared of Buy-to-Win content hold any water. Remember this is Diablo... Most gear has level limits to begin with. And I think Blizzard has enough understanding on how to satisfy its many many players. It's not like this was a title mocked up within a year by people with no experience with online offerings. Chances being, if there is a in game store, it will only offer nominal non gameplay areas (skins and the like). And that is just a part of PC gaming these days. Deal with it

I for one, AM in favor of the AH as I described it above. This is the understanding I have after reading the info I have been given. Also I believe possibly receiving something of monetary value from the hard work I put into a title, is an added bonus to my enjoyment of a title, not a burden.

You could always (Would you) kindly(?) choose not to play if such a system triggers the Ayn Rand in your psyche. Well unless Blizzard turns the world into.... ITEM FARMERS! (Bum bum BUUUUUUMMMMM)

I just feel at the end of the day, this is just a game. Something to enjoy, not build a life from playing. If you spend a fair amount of time on any title, or say watch a movie, chances are you will never see a return. So to bring up the point of time being the risk, you must have a time machine to give back all the hours you wasted doing anything you enjoy. Under that understanding, life itself is a gamble. And life is unfair for not paying us money for each minute we spend gambling each breathe. Some of you act as if businesses pay you to use them each time. Or that maybe my cable box prints money for each minute it wastes trying to entertain me, I guess maybe I just haven't found the we-pay-for-your-time compartment that you all have found. I must be senile...

Surely this system won't work like a charm off the bat, kind of like anything in the world. Yet without anyone attempting to change the perspective, things would never change to begin with.
Finally, someone else with a sensible view of things! It drives me crazy how it is such a common opinion that Blizzard is "money grubbing" and "greedy" simply because they made a decision that will net them more profit. Not to mention the lack of trust even though everything that has come out since Starcraft 1 has been stellar and has support better than arguably any other company on the planet. And FUN! Everyone always forgets about the FUN aspect of things because they're too busy rambling about the logistics of things.

This should be stickied in the front page of any forum thread dedicated to whining about the RMAH IMO.
 

OMGIllithan

New member
Mar 28, 2009
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Haakong said:
It also brings a new oppurtunity for players like me: Bosses can drop pizzas. They drop a bow my barbarian dont need, I put it on the real money AH for 5$, BAM! Frozen pizza for me. Best game idea ever.
This is the most hilarious view of the RMAH I have read so far. Hats off to you sir!
 

Necromancer1991

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Apr 9, 2010
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Can someone please explain how it's gambling, the only time chance even comes into the picture is the original act of any piece of loot dropping, once that occurs it's a concrete object incapable of change! I mean really Korea, that just seems to be a stupid thing to get hung up on.
 

Setch Dreskar

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Mar 28, 2011
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Necromancer1991 said:
Can someone please explain how it's gambling, the only time chance even comes into the picture is the original act of any piece of loot dropping, once that occurs it's a concrete object incapable of change! I mean really Korea, that just seems to be a stupid thing to get hung up on.
It involves the risk, because of Blizzard taking out the fees for using the auction house, the main fee in question is the real money listing price, which is non-refundable if you happen to lose to someone else in the auction house, then if you win Blizzard takes out another fee to get them more money, and if you want to cash out they take a third fee.

If people can be undercut for a single copper or bronze coin in other MMO's you can bet they will be very very stingy with REAL money, so the gamble comes in from the fees Blizzard takes out regardless. And since the drops are random and luck based it can fall under the jurisdiction of gambling.

If the listing fee wasn't there I can't see of any way it would involve risk. But with it there you risk losing your initial investment.
 

OMGIllithan

New member
Mar 28, 2009
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Necromancer1991 said:
Can someone please explain how it's gambling, the only time chance even comes into the picture is the original act of any piece of loot dropping, once that occurs it's a concrete object incapable of change! I mean really Korea, that just seems to be a stupid thing to get hung up on.
It isn't. If anyone tells you it is they're playing off of their own biases and fears without actually understanding the definition of the word.
 

Logan Westbrook

Transform, Roll Out, Etc
Feb 21, 2008
17,672
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Random loot is a form of gambling. Whether or not you're going to get undercut once your luck finds its way to the auction house also has to with gambling. Those are facts of the matter. I ain't saying gambling is immoral and should be banned or anything like that, but frankly, I only want Blizzard to suffer at this point, so fuck ideals.
 

Skeleon

New member
Nov 2, 2007
5,410
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Wow, I didn't even hear about that real money auction house. Boo, Blizzard, boo!
 

Eduard Blackbeard

New member
Nov 21, 2010
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I guess we should all be used to ignorant @$^@#'s posting their opinions by now. But we are not.

1) First of all the balance issue. If you have ever played any MMO and enjoyed it shut it about balance.
The auction house model is the same in any of the hundreds of MMO's to come out. Using real cash
won't change that. Not all gear will be BOE. If you choose to buy it with gold or cash doesn't matter.

2) Second the Gambling issue. If you do indeed pay real money to set up your auction then there is a risk involved and I can see it being classified as gambling. If you don't risk your real world money it is not gambling.

3) Third yes this is the best way to cut out third party gold spammers and the likes. There's no other way without the classic methods that simply aren't that effective.

4) Yes Blizzard is making a cut. They are a business and their goal is to make more money. It's a tiny cut but a cut non-the-less. And of course the third party gets a cut for their services. If you don't like Blizzard making 0.05cents off of whatever money you do make, DONT FREAKING USE THE AUCTION HOUSE.
If someone else decides they are okay with making $5.00 off an item and letting Blizzard take a small fee how is that your business?

I hope it doesn't get banned in South Korea. I'm sure a huge percent of the population of South Korea are also opposed to this. South Korean's are the hardest core gamers on the globe. They want this game just as much as anyone else.
 

pillinjer

New member
Feb 12, 2010
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According to the OED gambling is either:

play games of chance for money;
take risky action in the hope of a desired result

Which is an auction house whatever game you play.The difference is that usually you play with fake money (like on a free-to-play poker table). Yes its gambling but no there is not any real cost. (Yes ok Gold farmers subvert this but they are not part of the offical game).

Now Blizzard are releasing a game that costs real money to "play" the Auction House, and South Korea have said this breaks the gambling rules. So to all those who argue this isnt gambling...well yes it is, but such a mild form that I would have understood if South Korea had said it isnt gambling. And like Gambling, the House always wins.
 

Logan Westbrook

Transform, Roll Out, Etc
Feb 21, 2008
17,672
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This has been from day one a transparent cash grab by Blizzard, who has had a lot of Activision and Bobby K. rub off on them. In fact they are positively sticky with bobby k.

Anyway I've skipped SCII and I'm skipping D3. Screw 'em, I'll be playing Torchlight 2!
 

karloss01

New member
Jul 5, 2009
991
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can't wait to read all the stories about 10 year old kids charging up $5000 on a single wargear item on mommy's/daddy's credit card. because this is what the auction house is gonna do.