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Gold Farmer Documentary Preview 167

Posted by Zonk
from the weird-world dept.
There's a preview up on YouTube of an upcoming documentary on Chinese Gold Farmers. Terra Nova links to the video in a discussion on the hypermobility of labour in the 21st century. From the discussion: "In watching the video, I am most struck by the intertwined empowerment/disempowerment that is occurring simultaneously for these Chinese workers. Their lives in these virtual worlds are brighter, but yet their interactions with American players (and associated slurs) are a constant reminder of their inferior socio-economic status. The disembodied hypermobility granted by these virtual worlds is, to a certain extent, dispelled when they are labeled as 'Chinese gold farmers'. For them, it is a double-edged sword."
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Gold Farmer Documentary Preview

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  • Empowerment? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Southpaw018 (793465) *
    These people are doing something that disrupts the economy in online games and, in most cases, is wholesale against the rules. They have to buy account after account because they continually get banned. Their presence is detrimental to the game in numerous ways - from their inability to communicate with other players to the spam mail and tactics they use to 'sell' their virtual goods.

    How is this empowering? Sounds more like selfish to me. Stop playing my game! You're breaking the rules and making it worse
    • Re:Empowerment? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by 91degrees (207121)
      You're breaking the rules and making it worse for everyone!

      No. They're making it better for people who find making money boring but are willing to pay for the more rewarding experience of having a rich character.
      • you wouldn't need to play as much to get a rich character if they wern't inflating the market. It's especialy bad when the people who actually play a lot are still relativly poor
        • you wouldn't need to play as much to get a rich character if they wern't inflating the market.

          Nonsense.
    • Please backup your claim that what they're doing is "wholesale against the rules". Please also backup the claim that they "continually get banned".

      I'd be willing to bet that (unfortunately) I've played this game more hours than you, and across my multiple characters on several servers, I've only been contact in-game less than 5 times with direct offers from gold sellers. Meanwhile I've been begged for gold by English-speaking players dozens of times.

      Most of the farmers quietly kill the same creatures in a
      • Selling game-gold for cash is against the TOS for the majority of MMORPGs out there, including WoW. This is why it is against the rules, and why accounts that have been found to be selling gold for cash get banned.
        • There is nothing in the terms of service that says that earned gold cannot be sold to other players. If you believe otherwise, please quote the relavent section of ToS.

          Now, accounts that sell gold that was earned from hacks or exploits, yes those can be (and do get) banned. That is why Blizzard warned on the forums that if you buy gold from a source that stole it (by gaining access to another's account) or earned it from expliots, then that gold will be removed from your account (or the items purchased wi
          • Quoted directly from the ToS:

            8. Selling of Items.

            Remember, at the outset of these Terms of Use, where we discussed how you were "licensed" the right to use World of Warcraft, and that your license was "limited"? Well, here is one of the more important areas where these license limitations come into effect. Note that Blizzard Entertainment either owns, or has exclusively licensed, all of the content which appears in World of Warcraft. Therefore, no one has the right to "sell" Blizzard Entertainment's content
            • Excuse me for being anal, but this does not specifically include gold. It states that players may not make property claims (because Blizzard owns everything), but gold sellers are not claiming property ownership. They are selling access to gold.

              The proof is in the enforcement though (or lack thereof). If Blizzard had a real issue with the sale of earned gold, it would already have made eBay cease to allow the sale of gold. Lastly, Blizzard has made additional official statements about this topic where t
              • So from the lack of specific inclusion of the word "gold" or "money" in the ToS, and from the total lack of enforcement of a perceived ban on the practice of gold sales, I take that to mean that there is no such policy.

                Wrong. It's obvious that you've bought gold, and that you support the marketing of in game property. That's fine, you can admit it. Lots of people do or else it wouldn't be so successful. But picking nits in the TOS in an attempt to rationalize to yourself that what you're doing is not ag
            • Quoted directly from the ToS: ... Accordingly, you may not sell items for "real" money or exchange items outside of World of Warcraft.....

              Even if we assume that text is legally valid (which I doubt), its not outside the world of warcraft, Its *inside* world of warcraft - from one player to another.
              Now if a player want money for his time, there is nothing blizzard or any other company can do to prevent or even outlaw that (unless they can buy laws in the world)
      • Also don't forget, that some of these sites BUY gold from players.
    • Oh well I guess ill go tell them to stop being selfish and quit making enough money to live so you can continue to play your game with the ample amounts of cash you earn...

      'These people are doing something that disrupts the economy in online games'

      Evidence?

      The one study that ive seen in to how gold farming affects the economy in an online game actually showed it improved it. All these refrences to it destroying the ecomony appear to be based on nothing more than rumour and 'Well it just has to.'

      Dont get me
      • I've probably read the study you mentioned and I agree that the selling of gold probably doesn't have the extreme infaltionary effect that some people claim it does. The fact that they are under pressure to sell items quickly could create a downwards trend in prices.

        This is great for buyers but not so good for those doing the selling. Gold farmers can obtain items far more cheaply than the average player can. They are being paid to spend long days just playing the game. Since their increased volume drives d
    • by vertinox (846076) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @01:45PM (#14917324)
      How is this empowering? Sounds more like selfish to me. Stop playing my game!

      If you live in China or some other nation where $.25 per hour for a job is a dream come true, this is very empowering. Its either this or work a slave wage job in an unsafe factory or mine. That or turn to crime...

      Sure it ruins our games, but we are talking about people who don't have it good as us that have more money than we know what to do with so we spend it on "virtual" items.

      These people aren't doing this for fun... They are doing it to feed their families or eek a living. (well maybe not all of them)

      I don't blame them because they found a way to exploit a living.

      I blame the game companies for making a game that is so tedious to play and level that people are willing to pay others to do it for them.
      • I blame the game companies for making a game that is so tedious to play and level that people are willing to pay others to do it for them. You're placing the blame on the wrong people. The blame is with the Me generation who want everything right now. Instead of working and EARNING things from their effort, they'd rather spend cash to get instant gratification. If you want to play that type of game, go buy a single player game with built in godmode.
        • by vertinox (846076) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @02:24PM (#14917747)
          You're placing the blame on the wrong people. The blame is with the Me generation who want everything right now. Instead of working and EARNING things from their effort, they'd rather spend cash to get instant gratification. If you want to play that type of game, go buy a single player game with built in godmode.

          Truth be told, I don't play MMOGs anymore, but I can tell you that it results from the following two reason (which are related to gold farming).

          1. I'm tired of killing things over and over again to level.
          2. I'm not willing to spend money on paying other people to do this for me.

          I've been playing MUDs since Legend of the Red Dragon and I'm sick... so sick and tired of the same old formula. Kill 1,000 rats and get to level 10. Kill 10,000 Goblins and get to level 20. Kill 30,000 orcs and get to level 30.

          After Muds, UO, EQ, Shadowbane, and WoW I am just sick and tired of killing things with not a simple damn end game or something like direct player interaction.

          Truth be told, Ultima Online was the funnest MMOG I have ever played until they care beared and tried to copy EQ down to every last detail. I want to play a game for at the most 3 months and have my characters stats to what I want to be. The rest of the game should be a sandbox and player interaction (housing, crafting, player vs player, factions and basically player made content).

          If I want to kill things over and over again to get a higher level so I can get a more powerful sword so I can kill more powerful things so I can level to get a more powerful sword yet again... You are right, I can play Diablo 2 or Baldur's Gate... Or maybe Fallout 2 which has more story and enjoyment than most of thes MMOGs today.

          Ralph Koster is right... We need to shift focus away from mass genocide of rats and orcs and make the games more than just leveling. We need virtual worlds. Not single player hack and slash games with a chat interface with other players.

          The games are broken and until they find a better system of advanment, neither the MMOG companies nor the gold farmers will see any of my money.
          • Ralph Koster is right... We need to shift focus away from mass genocide of rats and orcs and make the games more than just leveling. We need virtual worlds. Not single player hack and slash games with a chat interface with other players.

            Um, they have that. It's called the Sims Online.

            http://www.ea.com/official/thesims/thesimsonline/ u s/nai/index.jsp [ea.com]

            Personally, I like killing stuff while chatting.

          • by Anonymous Coward
            So what's the alternative? You can go entirely skill-based (as in a system based entirely on the gamer's ability to manipulate controls and the system). However, that markedly decreases player "attachment" to his or her avatars and can encourage shallow play. Pure skill means that everyone's avatar is equal; the gaming experience needs to be competitive enough or deep enough that skill and understanding of the game are primary and sufficient motivators to continue playing. You could go half-way, requiri
          • Sounds like you should be playing Planetside. =)
      • According to this news item [people.com.cn] from the PRC, the hourly wage for urban workers in 2000 was more like $0.42/hour.

        Since income in general in China has been trending upwards since 2000, let's assume a modest 10% annual increase in income. Not too hard to imagine - the article showed a 13.1% increase from 1999 to 2000, and the Chinese economy has certainly been booming. If that assumption is correct, then your average urban worker in China is now earning around $0.75/hour. Pretty darn miserable, by western stan

      • If you live in China or some other nation where $.25 per hour for a job is a dream come true, this is very empowering. Its either this or work a slave wage job in an unsafe factory or mine. That or turn to crime...

        In a way, they did resort to crime. They're breaking the laws of a virtual world to secure real-world cash. If EULAs and service agreements had any weight in courts, you could say that gold farmers were breaking real-world law as well.
      • If you live in China or some other nation where $.25 per hour for a job is a dream come true, this is very empowering.

        Yeah, I'm sure there is some peasant in Columbia who would be very "empowered" by becoming a rich drug lord too. That doesn't make it right or good.

        "Empowering" yourself by exploiting others isn't a noble act, even if you're poor.

        -Eric

    • Stop playing my game! You're breaking the rules and making it worse for everyone!
      ACs are modded -6. I don't read you, I don't mod you, I don't see you. Don't like it? Don't be a coward.



      Hey, its one of the rules here you don't have to register. So breaking the rules on slashdot!
  • Fascinating (Score:5, Interesting)

    by blunte (183182) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @01:25PM (#14917119)
    Looking forward to a complete documentary.

    Just like with "normal" players, there's a great variety in the behaviors. Some gold farms are friendly, even fun (and some are quite skilled in PvP), but some seem ignorant robots that do the same things non stop and repeat the same phrases in horribly broken English.

    I've grouped with a few farmers before - even communicated to some degree with them (google for english to pinyin dictionary), but there are some universal behaviors they have. First and foremost, they will roll NEED on any item that drops, regardless of whether they can or would use it. As far as I can tell, they don't understand the difference between NEED and Greed.

    In some respects they've done less damage than some of the other entrepreneurs - the ones who troll the auction house all day buying up every single item and repricing them higher. There's some guy on Eredar alliance side named Plate (and Platejr) who literally buys every single item within a range of levels and then reprices it roughly 4x higher than what it would normally sell at. That guy is far more despicable than people who churn away at Tyr's Hand all day.
    • If people weren't able to get tons of gold with no effort, all his rebuying would be for naught. The items would expire, unsold, and he'd simply lose money, eventually running out of captial to keep trying this. However players that buy gold don't see it as worth much, after all they can simply buy more, and thus are willing to spend inflated prices.
      • I do wonder about this. I actually think most of the people who buy the overpriced junk are actually alternate characters of players who already have established (reasonably wealthy) 60s. They start a new character, and they can afford to pay 1g for a level 20 robe.

        Seriously I doubt that he makes much money doing this disservice, but I could be wrong. Much of the stuff I see overpriced are items that really no smart player would wear anyway.

        You're right though, people who buy gold are more able to overpa
    • "First and foremost, they will roll NEED on any item that drops, regardless of whether they can or would use it. As far as I can tell, they don't understand the difference between NEED and Greed."

      Um....what part of "they sell loot to get gold to sell for cash" don't you understand? They roll NEED so they can increase their revenue...its not a question of Need vs Greed...its a question of "how can I get more crap to sell".

    • People get all upset with the chinese farmers as if they are 'stealing' something or doing something dishonorable or dispicable. But get some perspective. Most slashdot readers work a half-hour to pay for a month. I bet most farmers work all day for a couple bucks.

      The relative disparity in wealth is the cause of gold-farming, played out through market forces. But what's really ironic is that their farming makes you richer. How did you afford that 100-stack of water you bought for the instance run? Bec
      • Re:Fascinating (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        The majority of gold farmers make heavy use of bot programs, exploits, hacks, griefing (such as mob training), ninja looting, and other things that are considered by legit players as bad form and cheating. They are also explicitly breaking the terms of service of most games for some of these things, as well as the act of selling gold/items for RL cash. So yes, they are cheating.

        How did you afford that 100-stack of water you bought for the instance run?

        The mage made it for free. Or maybe the fact that I c
    • That 'Plate' scheme you describe doesn't sound like it can work.

      You're saying that he buys X at an auction for 5g and then reauctions it for 20g. Why didn't the people who buy it for 20g outbid him in the first auction?? Why can he get people to pay 4 times as much at an auction than others can??
      • by Jurrasic (940901)
        It takes time and patience to make that scheme work. Eventually, when he holds all the items in question in that level range and none are availible, his price becomes the 'going' price. People coming into the market to sell will sell at or near his price, (or be bought up by plate) and new buyers are forced to pay the 'going' rate as that's what it is. You have to speculate for a long time and prepare to lose some gold before you start earning it back in bucketloads, but it does work. A guildie of mine di
  • by kidcharles (908072) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @01:30PM (#14917189)
    [Ironforge - Trade Channel] xengzi: u buy [Double-Edged Sword] 600g?
  • by falcon5768 (629591) <Falcon5768@comcasTEAt.net minus caffeine> on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @01:34PM (#14917218) Journal
    but yet their interactions with American players (and associated slurs) are a constant reminder of their inferior socio-economic status.
    Or maybe its a constant reminder of how their tactics and what they do ruins a game people pay VERY good money to play.

    I just dont get this need to feel sympithetic to people who play for free, make money (even if it is dirt) to do it, and ruin something I pay to play myself. Some sellers are nice guys, I have helped out one group in FFXI more than once simply cause they help others, and share their loot if you work with them. BUT I cant stand the majority who disrupt the game killing players, stealing mobs, price fixing items, and break the game rules get caught get kicked then manage to get back in as someone else.

    They are criminals, there is no sorta catagory. If a homeless man steals your money, they go to jail. Someone breaks into your computer system, they go to jail. Why is it someone is alowed to steal your money (which is what they are doing when they restrict you from doing something you paid for unfairly), and its ok cause its a game?

    • Why is it someone is alowed to steal your money (which is what they are doing when they restrict you from doing something you paid for unfairly), and its ok cause its a game?

      Huh-wha?! Correcting the spelling and grammar mistakes, I still can't parse that into anything meaningful. I'm going to assume you meant "paid for fairly" and not "paid for unfairly" because that makes more sense. So, presumably, you meant:

      Why is it that someone is allowed to steal your money (which is what they are doing when

      • Suggesting that stealing actual money is on the same par as selling gold in games is - well - ludicrous.

        Are you paying 12-15 dollars a month to play a game?

        Don't you think being unable to progress in a game not because the game is hard, but because a outside entity has decided to make it so that you cant progress in the game without either working way harder than you should or paying them money is not extortion in a way?

        We are not simply talking about cheating and taking two off your stroke, we are ta

        • by _xeno_ (155264) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @03:06PM (#14918113) Homepage Journal
          Are you paying 12-15 dollars a month to play a game?

          Actually, yes, I think it's $14/month for my two characters in FFXI. By the way, FFXI is a lot more fun when you don't take it so seriously.

          Don't you think being unable to progress in a game not because the game is hard, but because a outside entity has decided to make it so that you cant progress in the game without either working way harder than you should or paying them money is not extortion in a way?

          Who made the game like that? Did the gilsellers? Nope. Did Square-Enix? Yep. I remember years ago people were complaining to GMs about players monopolizing spawn points, and Square-Enix's response was "that's fair play." Take it up with Square-Enix, not the players playing within their rules.

          While it might be a new type of crime, whats going on IS a crime, but the same courts who would rule that extortion is illegal in real life, when it comes to the internet gets all fuzy since it is real money converted to fake money converted to real money again.

          I disagree that it's extortion. Poor game design, maybe, but not extortion. It's a game! You don't have to play it. You can just quit, like I've done twice and my brother does weekly. (It's becoming a bit of a joke. "That's it! I'm never playing FFXI ever again!" Fast forward to the next day. "So, whatcha doin'?" "Um, hunting pirates in FFXI." "I thought you quit FFXI?" "Yeah, well, shut up.")

          Back when it was released in the US, FFXI was set up such that it made gilsellers able to monopolize content. Square-Enix has slowly been changing the game to try and make up for this flaw in their game. But it's Square-Enix's job to police their game and not the courts. If the player's get fed up with the game world, they can just quit! No one is making you play FFXI. You're free to play any other MMORPG. Maybe World of WarCraft is more your speed. Maybe you'd rather play EverQuest II or Guild Wars. If you're that upset with the way Square-Enix is handling gilsellers in Final Fantasy XI, stop playing!

          But please, don't involve the real-world legal system in a problem caused by poor game design.

  • It amazes me that these people will actually whine about being treated differently than other players, when their actions do nothing to help the greater good of the game. In FFXI, the'yre called gilfarmers, and I've never once heard anybody attack them racially. Nationally, sometimes, since the common opinion is that they're probably from china. Their existance in game makes everybody else's in-game life more difficult and time-consuming, since they camp NMs all day and inflate prices on high-level gear.
  • by Animats (122034) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @01:48PM (#14917357) Homepage
    Manual gold farming is inefficient. We need to build better bots to compete with offshore low-wage countries.
  • Farming and selling the goods for real life money is "illegal" in most games (read: Against the terms of use). Selling, and in some games buying, in game content or services in exchange for real life goods, services or money can result in suspension or ban.

    So I doubt many hardcore gamers who kinda "live" inside their games will have a lot of sympathy for them. They're breaking the rules, the "law" of the game. Now, would society have sympathy for outlaws in the real world?

    Unless the laws are unjust and thus
  • Paying for someone to transfer you gold accumulated by him is no different than, let's say, paying someone to sit at your home computer using your own char to farm for items and gold while you work.

    Granted, WoW's EULA forbids your from both purchasing gold from a 3rd party and allowing someone else to play your account, even your brother (the account is considered exclusive and non-transferable). Also, it's obvious that any online "gold" is Blizzard's possession, not the player's possesion. But other than t
    • The prices tend to get inflated, though, because when the farmers put the items up for sale they're not putting it up for common-sense prices. They're putting up the items for inflated prices so they get more gold that they can sell. In turn people buy that gold so they can afford the items the farmers put up for sale in the first place. It's a vicious cycle, but the opposite way that you explain it.
    • Granted, WoW's EULA forbids your from both purchasing gold from a 3rd party and allowing someone else to play your account, even your brother (the account is considered exclusive and non-transferable).

      What if the account is owned by a Limited Liability Partnership formed by you and your brother?
  • by Kelz (611260) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @03:05PM (#14918109)
    "Don't loot that! There are starving people in China!"
  • ...but I'll say it again. You wanna stop goldfarming? Don't make it boring and tedious to get gold, or don't make massive amounts of gold helpful. How can this be done? Make better skills equal better gear, and get rid of non-player bound world drops. Get rid of massive goldsink things, such as 900g epic mounts. Get rid of gold entirely by having an economy based on bartering and exchanging crafted goods. People will always pay others to do things that they don't want to spend time to do themselves.
  • makes gold farming a waste of time, IMHO.
  • by jasen666 (88727) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @05:52PM (#14919491)
    My heart bleeds for them having to endure being called such harsh names and berated in a game all day long.
    What, they don't like being called "Chinese gold farmers"?
    Well, lets see...
    Chinese? Check.
    Farming? Check.
    For gold? Check.
    I guess an appropriate retort to me would be for them to call me "American game player" in the most derogatory typing style they can.
    Waa?
    • My heart bleeds for them having to endure being called such harsh names and berated in a game all day long.

      Why am I reminded of telemarketers whinging about being treated as if they were disease-ridden, oxygen-wasting boils on the ass of humanity? (Answer: They are.)

      Gold Farmers can join Spammers and Telemarketers: cocksuckers who ruin a good thing for other people so they can make an easy buck.
  • If you need an example of why you can justify blocking Chinese Farming - you need only look to the game that all but endorses it - Lineage II.

    You can get banned for reporting farmers or disrupting any activities they do (with them able to do whatever), with the rare mass ban to cycle the low revenue farmers out, coincidentally with a predicted rise in gold cost. Items, crafting, and quests all are engineered to be accomplished in only one way, botted farming. It is either risk being banned or being illequip
  • by blindauer (472409) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @08:57PM (#14920908) Homepage
    It turns out, not all Chinese WoW players are gold farmers. Maybe they're the exception rather than the rule, I don't know the numbers, but allow me to share an experience I had just a few days ago.

    I'm killing gorillas in Un'goro crater, grinding my hunter up to level 54. I've been doing this for about 30 minutes now, and I find myself in front of U'cha, a gorilla boss who lives in this cave. There's a quest to kill him, and I've done it probably a dozen times on various other characters. Right now, on this character, I don't have the quest, and no real reason to kill U'cha. Except for the fact that I love killin'. So I am gonna kill him.

    Just as I place my hunter's mark on U'cha's soon-to-be-departed ass, I get a group invite from a player named "Xiojuang", or some such Chinese sounding name. Now, I normally decline unsolicited group invites without a second thought. If you don't have the courtesy to ask me if I want to join you, I don't want to help you, it's just common courtesy to ask first. Also, the very Chinese sounding name reminds me of a gold farmer. Between trade channel spamming and spawn point camping, I generally hate gold farmers. I'm reasonably sure this guy is a gold farmer who needs my help (he's a warrior, several levels below me, and there's no way he's gonna take down this big ape on his own). But at this point I'm bored, so with a grin on my face, I accept the group invite to see what he wants.

    We stand there in silence for minute, he and I. Then he says, "i am chinese friend". Fuck, I knew it, gold farmer. I respond, "umm... ok". More silence. Still standing just out of combat range of U'cha, my Chinese friend finally says, "i need kill him you help me plz". Well, you know, I was gonna kill him anyway. What's the harm in helpin this guy out? None, really, and I am bored, so I respond, "ok". "go go go", he says. Damn, he's impatient, as I'd have guessed. Fine, I'll kill. I send my pet after U'cha and, after giving him a few seconds to establish aggro, I open fire. Within 20 seconds U'cha is lifeless on the ground, and Xio is looting his corpse, picking up the quest item he needed.

    Are ya happy, ya goddamn chinese gold farmer? See, this is where things change. Nearly as random as his unsolicited group invite, he opens a trade window with me, and without a word, places a pair of pants into it. They're mail pants, with +agility on them, pretty nice gear for a hunter of my level. It so happens that my gear is better, but I'm not going to turn them down, so I accept them, and, wondering why he did this, I message him with a simple "?". He responds, "i give you". Hmm, that's not what I expected at all.

    Now, U'cha may be eating the floor, but my Chinese friend and I are still in the back of this cave, with at least a dozen gorillas between us and daylight. We're both going the same direction, so I figure, why not fight our way out of here together? In the battles which ensued during the course of our exit from the cave, several "green" (uncommon) items are dropped by various gorillas we kill. When grouped with strangers in WoW, it's generally accepted that any green or higher items are simply greed rolled by all members of the party, and the high roller gets the item. You can generally expect farmers to always roll "need", in order to get the items, whether or not they actually need them. They're going to put them up for sale in the Auction House. But this guy didn't roll, neither need, nor greed, he PASSED on both items. The first time, I messaged him, "hey, don't you want that? just roll greed...". He responded, "no you have". Whoa.

    Finally we get to the exit of the cave. He messages me, "i go now". And then, "good bye friend". Then he mounts his horse and rides off.

    Now, this guy was either NOT a gold farmer, or maybe just a really crappy one. Giving me items? Passing the roll on items? No, farmers would NOT do that, certainly not good ones. I think this was just a regular Chinese guy playing WoW, just lik
  • obCorey ref (Score:3, Informative)

    by ian_mackereth (889101) on Tuesday March 14, 2006 @09:58PM (#14921195) Journal
    What? No link to Cory Doctorow's excellent take on this situation in his story "Anda's Game" yet?

    http://craphound.com/000187.html [craphound.com]

    The full text and a podcast version are there.

  • Man I am so out of touch "with the kids". I cannot imagine anything less entertaining than playing an online game where paying someone to accumulate items for me makes sense.

    In my day, role playing was all about the journey. Mind you, then there was no such thing as "online" so like I say, I'm soooo out of touch.
  • In the interactions I've had with some gold farmers (note the lack of the word 'Chinese' there) they have all basically been rude. As a mage, I've had several approach me and demand 20 stacks of water and food. Something like 'food20 water20 NOW!!!' When that happens I usually sit and watch for a while, just to see if they're a farmer, and they're usually pretty easy to spot. Some randomly invite me into a group and in the couple times I accepted (due to expecting a group invite from a guildmate around the
  • More power to them. It is a complete MYTH that farmers cause inflation. Talk to any graduate economics student and let them run the numbers (I had my work's accounts crush numbers because they found the idea of virtual economies fascinating.) and they came back with a simple summary for us non-economics majors (my bg is in theology and history).

    Ready?

    "Because there is no real scaricity in a vitual economy the laws of supply and demand and basic inflation do not function as they do in the real world."

    There a

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