Saturday, September 27, 2008

Exactly how big is the Gold Spammer problem?

The Greenskin just made a fascinating observation: In separate reports, Mythic has claimed that Warhammer has had 500,000 accounts created and that 4000 accounts have been banned for gold seller spamming. As he points out, that's a little rounding error away from 1% of all registered accounts taking part of gold seller spamming within the first week of the game's retail launch.

I've only received one spamvertisement so far, which is nothing compared to LOTRO after they implemented their free trials, but that also means that Mythic hasn't caught them all yet. Also, this game doesn't HAVE free trials yet, which means that, unless these spammers have already started compromising accounts and credit cards via keyloggers, they actually BOUGHT $50 retail boxes. That only makes sense if their market is large enough that they expected to break even on paying $200,000 for accounts in the first place. Again, that's just the money they've spent on the accounts that have been caught and banned so far, meaning that the farmers must actually be spending even more than that if they're still at it despite the bans. That's staggering.

Scott Jennings claims that you cannot stop gold farming via prohibition. It would certainly help if you weren't scrounging for currency at level 2. Still, if demand is great enough to justify $200K in initial investment, expecting to recoup that money and turn a profit, this issue is way larger than I ever considered.


Snafzg said...

I finally started getting spammed on Ostermark this weekend. Booerns! :P

I actually earned the title, "The Snob" by /ignoring 5 people!

Dracon said...

I have been spammed countless times. Of course, I have been playing every day. I dutifully report them, and they disappear, then more come back. I can't believe they are paying for all those accounts.