Space Drama

EVE[EVE Online] A recent email from CCP offered me a free 7 day come back offer. Figuring it was a good way to train a skill for free (skills train in real time even if your account is closed), I popped in to see what was new. I found myself staring straight into the drama of space.

It appeared that my former corporation in EVE, Ars Caelestis, had been disbanded by the CEO. In fact, the claims were such that he stole lots of ISK on his way to the full and final destruction of the corp. The CEO, Achilles Thorongmor, did not go quietly into the night as I expected. I thought some of you might find it interesting to see some of the things that go on in EVE Online and I leave it to you to decide what is right and what is wrong.

First up was the post in the EVE Online official forums exclaiming that Ars Caelestis was dead:

Early this morning, Ars Caelestis was hit by a corp thief of the worst kind. The person who was a part of community and served us as an excellent leader has taken leave of his senses and not only stripped all members of their roles but has also taken possession of all the corporate ISK and assets. Additioally he has seized over seven billion ISK that was being donated for a T2 BPO purchasing program. This person was not one whom we thought would ever be a problem, a kind and honest person who was always looking out for his corporation. As you can guess, this was the CEO of the corporation.

I will not go into details of what happened. Needless to say, he disagreed with the rest of his corp, and decided to cash in all his chips and leave the corp with nothing. As such, Achilles Thorongmor, Garion Thorongmor, and Bon Mot are now considered corp thieves.

The Ars Caelestis community will go on. We are already forming a new corp, and from the ashes of the old we will rise again to higher and loftier goals. I warn the rest of EVE, do not buy these characters as they will always be KOS to those of us who will never forget how he treated those loyal to him.

This was followed by several posts of support for the former members of Ars Caelestis and condemnation of Achilles. The former members reformed as a new corporation called “Ars ex Discordia” with the tag being “ARSED”. I found that rather humorous.

Achilles Thorongmor, not to be outdone, posted this counter assault:

Hello pilots,

I’ve decided to reveal some things that may seem shocking to a lot of you. As you all know, I recently took my leave from Ars Caelestis. As you also know, I’m being labeled a corp thief and traitor. After a week or so of thinking, I’ve decided to reveal the true nature of Ars Caelestis and its members.

In the beginning, there was a corp. It was called Ars Tribunus. It was started by a member of the online computer site, Ars Technica. The corp was formed exclusively for members of the Ars Technica community, which are referred to as Arsians. Ars Tribunus was to be an entry level corp with no ill intent towards anyone. Its members were able to mine, rat, and just hang out in general. Shortly after this corps birth, the CEO went AWOL. The corp was in turmoil. As a “senior member” and leader in Ars Tribunus, I was voted in as CEO of the new Ars corp, Ars Caelestis. So the corp was formed and quickly filled with likeminded Arsians. There was a twist though.

Shortly after forming, several things happened. First, the Guiding Hand Social Club incident of lore took place. Second, the realization of the membership that we were WAY behind the power curve and that all the high sp players, T2 BPO’s, and ISK were already in major corps and alliances. And third, the membership of the corp was vastly formed by people working in the IT community. ArsC also contained a large amount of people working in the Psychology field, which proved to be very useful. We also took note of the Something Awful crew, known to most of you as the Goons. They weren’t exactly playing the game “right”, and were considered cheaters of sorts. That interested us. So, we made a decision. ArsC would become a different sort of corp. We would become a destroyer of alliances, but not with guns and ships. We would take down alliances from the inside. There was a problem though. We’d have to help other alliances out to kill the alliance we wanted dead. So our backup was to always infiltrate the alliance we were helping also. That may come to a shock to those we’ve helped.

So we created a list of things that we should strive for and use to kill whatever alliance we were in. It goes something like this:

1. Only join alliances that were heavy users of forums. Get at least one members into an admin capacity asap. Once there, give members access to leadership and restricted section of the forum. Once inside, members were to obtain as much vital information as possible
2. Get members into admin roles on whatever voice server said alliance used. Admit members of opposing alliances into the voice server under non-threatening names. Once there, the enemy would have a distinct advantage in any battle.
3. Place alts in every corp in the alliance to further funnel Intel.
4. Place alts in leadership positions in the alliance and in the individual corps. If possible, attempt to funnel money and assets away from the corps. Use fake logs and screens to blame other players in said corps, further causing a rift between members.
5. Seed discontent where possible. This was done mainly by raising issues and causing internal strife, while attempting to make it look like we were the victims.
6. Make contacts in enemy alliances with alts and funnel all Intel to their leadership. Sit back and watch as every battle is lost and the alliance falls apart.
7. Rinse and repeat.

Now, this was much more time consuming than we first thought. Our alts would have to appear as normal players in the alliance corps, so we had to have them logged in, even AFK, almost 23/7. We also ran into problems with the new player tracking tools in Revelations. Being able to see where a player last logged in or out caused us problems. Before we could have the alts spread all over Eve, but with player tracking we had to keep them in a place that would seem normal to said corps leadership.

Now, another major operating procedure was to use propaganda to appear innocent. We did this in multiple ways. First, we condemned piracy. Second, we condemned the GHSC. We had a strict non-smack policy in place as well. Tessa Vaako, my COO, was the main person in charge of propaganda and misdirection. His skill at staying “neutral” and coming off as the good guy were extremely useful. At one point people actually started joking about us being “The Killer of Alliances”. You can imagine my surprise when I saw that, but we were able to spin it into a joke and I think it actually helped take eyes off of us.

It goes on and on, but you get the point. So basically he is trying to make the former members of Ars Caelestis look tainted and thus perhaps add insult to injury. As a former member of this corporation, I saw nothing to cause me to believe anything he wrote here. It all seemed like a desperate attempt to make a name for himself in the game world. In general, it appeared that the readers of the EVE forums did not believe him either and this prompted another post by Achilles:

Awesome Stuff!!! To see a group of people get so worked up over a game, lol. First, I’d like to thank the new Arsed guys for showing your true nature. You get ripped off and exposed in a video game full of imaginary spaceships, and you immediately resort to threats and personal attacks. You’re doing research on me in real life, matrices reborn? And you’re posting about my mental status, based on a video game. Oh, and my wife is getting brought into this? Amazing!!! Wow, you gonna track me down and beat me up for taking your imaginary money and ruining your imaginary lives? lol. Pathetic. This shows exactly what the Arsed guys are. Video game addicted, metagaming, crazy mofos. You are losing touch with reality as you apparently can’t keep this ingame. I thank you for proving my point.

On the subject of proof. What would you guys like? If I post logs, they will be called fake. Screenshots? Well duh, those were photoshopped of course. This is a game. There is no proof I can give that will make anyone believe me more or less. Kugutsumen proved that. Believe my story or not, I could care less. Just trying to be helpful. Wink

So, I got tired of a game and, like some have stated, took my toys and went home. Now I’m a crazy, pathetic loser in RL? I’ve actually received threats from these Arsed guys. Got logs for that, but of course they’re fakeWink. Wow. Again I’m amazed at the lunacy I’m seeing from people who play this game. Ok, well you are all guilty of property damage and murder, since you destroy imaginary ships and kill imaginary guys in little round eggs. Laughing BTW, all you pirates out there are going to jail you damn thieves. You all have no morales in RL because of your imaginary video game actions. GHSC guys, you should all be taken out and shot obviously, because you are terrible people because of what you did in Eve. Laughing

Guys, this is a game. It will eventually go offline and nothing you ever did will mean anything whatsoever. I ran an imaginary corp, got sick of the people in it and our actions in this fantasy world, and I stole some imaginary money and spaceships. There, I have confessed. Take that to your local police station and see if you can get the warrant issued. Everyone here needs to step back and take a breath. It’s a game!!!

And yes, I could easily sell my characters and start all over again. Not a single person would know. For that matter, anyone in Eve could do that. Why? Because it’s all fantasy. I’ve already sold all of them except Achilles. I have enough isk to buy 3 or so 50mil SP+ characters if I wanted. I could reappear in any corp in the game. That’s the nature of Eve. Matter of fact, I had an alt in STK-S that I stupidly got caught with, due in part to the metagaming of Arsed. They are actually tracking my IP addresses. They used IP info from the Arsclan board, stuff from the Mercenary Coalition board, and provided said info to the STK leadership which resulted in the removal of my alt. I’m pretty sure that’s know as metagaming. And if Arsed or STK-S would like to give some real evidence against my claim of metagaming, please give it. There is no way you could have tracked down that alt unless you used out of game means. Thanks for proving me right. What now? Easy. Buy more characters and mask my IP better in the future.Twisted Evil

So yes, I’m a crazy, terrible, murdering, property damaging, stealing, lying, cheating, bad man in RL because of my actions.YARRRR!! Honestly, the only people I’ve seen that need mental help are the Arsed guys making threats of violence and personal attacks based on a video game. So please keep up the personal attacks Arsed guys, it does nothing but give undeniable proof of what you are.

To you all, please get help. This is a game. Don’t like my post? I don’t care. The replies in this thread have proved me right, so I win. Now, onward with the flaming and the deflective posts!!!

So there you have it. Not sure what happened to Achilles to send him off the deep end and betray his friends, but this proves once again – you can’t trust ANYONE in EVE Online.

– Ethic

Published by

Ethic

I own this little MMO gaming blog but I hardly ever write on it any more. I’m more of a bloglord or something. Thankfully I have several minions to keep things rolling along.

40 thoughts on “Space Drama”

  1. Never understood why one person has the power to disband/rob an org/guild/clan whatever.

    Devs should put limits on how much any one person can take out of a bank, anything over that takes a certain numbers of officers clicking a simple “I approve this” button.

    Eh thats not just aimed at Eve, it’s always struck me as odd in any game.

  2. Wow. Makes me kind of glad I ended up a BoB renter whilst going through my six month ArsTech forums prereq.

    It’s true about trust, though. I went nuts the week before Revelations came out and sold upwards of 800M isk of bookmarks at slightly discounted prices to folk who didn’t read forums/devblogs.

  3. Seems to be a huge amount of Paranoia Tools in Eve Corps nowadays, almost none of which are effective against Social Engineering, and anyway, if The CEO decides to leg it with the Precious Things, there really is nothing you can do about it.

    I do think he’s somewhat naieve in being surprised at the reaction to it all though.

    “It’s just a computer game guys! The stuff I stole isn’t real! Chill!”,

    “Oh, yes, sorry! Bravo, sir, well played, you crafty scallywag, you!”

  4. Amen brother.

    That game has become more about social drama than any in-game challenges. People fighting in space is maybe only 50% of the game now. The real game in Eve is the meta-game. Got the same mail. /delete

  5. Achilles was always a bit of a hothead, but I never would have guessed him to be a thief. I think what happened is that something put him over the edge, perhaps he argued with some of the other people in Ars C about an issue and he blew up. Later, I think he felt ashamed and tried to deflect all the anger directed at him by claiming the whole corp was a bunch of lowlife scumbags. All his claims of threats against him and his wife? Didn’t see any personally, but I know that in several past scams people have been known to make threats against the thieves. Wouldn’t shock me.

    I fully expected him to take his ISK and buy a high skill point player and move on, nobody the wiser. Really stunned to see any response from him at all.

    I did manage to meet up with an old friend so it was not all a waste of time. /wave alaph.

  6. And this is why I don’t play in a primarily PvP game. It almost always attracts these kinds of personalities. I’m not saying that’s all they attract, but the asshole content is almost always higher.

  7. “you can’t trust ANYONE in EVE Online”

    You can trust me to stand with my friends…
    You can trust me to shoot anyone I can…
    You can trust me to seek out anyone hiding in a system I claim as home….
    And you can trust me to put the loot I gather to good use…

    Beyond that, yeah, not much else to trust in

  8. ““It’s just a computer game guys! The stuff I stole isn’t real! Chill!”,
    “Oh, yes, sorry! Bravo, sir, well played, you crafty scallywag, you!””

    Funny thing is, that’s *exactly* what I’ve been thinking every time I’ve read about one of these scams, especially the ones that were performed entirely in-game. The difference between me and those who complain about Eve’s lack of player rules is that when I’m playing Eve, I’m *assuming my character*.

    I know that the Eve universe favours scammers, pirates and scum. CCP makes that clear in their lore. Thus, when my character gets screwed by another character, I think exactly that – “Bravo, sir, well played, you crafty scallywag, you!”. Every time my character takes a loss, I smack myself for my stupidity and learn another valuable lesson.

    I guess it depends on if you play an MMO to live a character, or if you play to experience constant growth and get new shinys. To me, the socially hostile environment in Eve is a greater challenge – and thus allows for higher quality, more nuanced gameplay – than Abrahadabra the Instanced Lord of Doom.

  9. I say go into a game with your eyes wide open… if you think you are safe, but the truth is you are not… who do you blame? The Devs… or you? If the game screams at you -up front- that nowhere is safe…… why would you assume anywhere is?

    Bit of irony here, as I tend to be carebear-ish in my gaming… but EvE… I dunno, there is a cosmic justice feeling I cant put my finger on, that just makes this game correct to me…

  10. If only there actually was any semblance of justice in EVE. Criminals are not held responsible for their actions. As a last resort, they give all their money and items to another one of their characters and you’ll never see the old criminal again.

  11. Though I find such distasteful, scams and thievery are part of the game. The problem is that thanks to alts and character sales its a risk free enterprise, its no wonder not a week goes by without an account of some hiest being pulled being posting on the Eve forums. Steal whatever you can get your hands on and just transfer it to an alt character and it becomes untraceable, then just launder your player reputation by legally selling off your original character for in game currency and purchasing a new far superior one with your ill gotten gains.

    Eve would be a far better game without alts and character sales. At the very least there needs to be a check upon the rampant scams and thefts, a means to trace transactions and movements of goods.

    Eve needs detectives, forensic accountants. Where is my space Marlowe?

  12. sorry to hear about your corp Ethic, but a always tAMI has a home for you….and we never ask for money from our members.

    There are good honest corps in EvE but with any media scandal makes for better headlines.

    Cheers

  13. CCP willingly let’s people get away with this which is what irritates me. It is not hard to track money in a game. If player A goes from X amount to, 20 times that amount and everybody who was in his corp goes wtf he stole that, maybe..just MAYBE CCP could oh I dunno track it down and return it to the corp.

    It’s the only way to “police” anything. As has been pointed out by so many in this discussion there is no accountability for any one in what they do. The various jackasses get to walk away scott free and xfer their money and items they stole to a new toon or whatever (which can also be tracked, it’s how Blizzard tracks people who hack accounts and xfer the gold/items to a new toon)/

    This is one of the things that has kept me from embracing Eve (that and I know nobody else who plays it personally). I don’t LIKE the feeling of being by myself in a group of people I SHOULD be able to trust.

  14. I’ve nothing against against the gameplay of theft itself, but I do think you have to prepared for the infamy that goes with it. Seems asking a little much to expect a golfclap for ripping people off in an especially flambouyant manner – human nature and all.

    I’m back in there myself now and have found a fairly decent small corp to be a part of, and superficially, they seem relaxed, likeable and casual folks, but even so, I’m still keeping anything of value to me, in my own private hangars. If you assume anything given to The Corp is already lost, then you can only be pleasantly surprised.

    Not a state of affairs I’m too happy with of course, but then EVE does make up for it in a number of other different ways.

  15. “Not a state of affairs I’m too happy with of course, but then EVE does make up for it in a number of other different ways.”

    Exactly. If, as Rand ‘al Thor says,

    “MAYBE CCP could oh I dunno track it down and return it to the corp”

    then the facet of gameplay that consist of infiltrating and corrupting enemy corporations or being an evil scumbag CEO that uses his employees is effectively ruined, as the Gods of EvE proclaims with a booming voice “Thou Shalt Not Be Mean To Thy Neighbour!”

    It’d be immersion breaking and patronizing, and would only increase the fun level for people who wishes EvE to be something it is clearly not. I say this with the utmost respect, because I realize that people have different play styles – please, if you wish for the EvE universe to be nice to you, leave the game. It will never be the game you want it to be. ATITD is a good alternative, if you like a sandbox game with collaborative elements and the ability to place near-complete trust in your online group members. Claiming EvE provides an environment that’s too hostile and paranoid is like playing a horror game and claiming it’s too scary.

  16. I don’t think too many people are trying to change EVE. Instead, they are explaining why they don’t like it and therefore don’t play it.

    And really, the immersion breaking part for me is when someone steals all your stuff and transfers it to the new character they purchased. Give me a way to track them down and hunt them and it’ll make more sense.

    There is hardly any penalty for being a bad guy here. And that’s EVE. Thus, I quit playing and see no reason to return. It’s not a game I have fun playing any more.

    If more bad guys kept playing as the bad guy, like Istvaan, I’d be thrilled.

  17. “And really, the immersion breaking part for me is when someone steals all your stuff and transfers it to the new character they purchased. Give me a way to track them down and hunt them and it’ll make more sense.”

    I agree, but CCP shouldn’t be using out-of-game powers to do it for you. As it turns out, giving your character the ability to track down another character to dole out Wild West style mob justice is a bit of a nightmare in terms of possible ways such a system could be used for griefing in and of itself. The new Contract system seems very promising as it allows for a game mechanic to track possible breaches of arbitrary contracts, and perhaps all major currency transfers could go through a mandatory, CCP-run escrow service to ensure out-of-character foul play is minimized.

    But as stated, hard nut to crack, and to me the possibilities for good gameplay by allowing it outweighs the potential drawbacks.

  18. Agree, there really is no good way to track someone down and I don’t think it makes sense to have CCP using their database to do so. That basically says that a current valid form of game play is no longer valid. I like that EVE has bad guys. I don’t like how easy it is for them to get away with it. I’d love to be able to exact some revenge on the scumbags.

    This game just encourages cowardly behavior like that which Achilles performed. He knew that the worst thing that could happen to him is that he’d be forced to abandon his current character and purchase an even higher level character with his ill-gotten goods and play on with nobody being able to get back at him.

    Makes me wonder how many high level characters are actually the new main of some former scumbag.

  19. It is obvious that this was more than a game to Achilles. I never had an issue with him while I played. I liked him personally, but I quit long before this occurred. It is just a matter of time before something like this happens to any corporation in EVE online. Unlike a game like WoW where you can easily pick up the pieces and go elsewhere to get your +1 foozles, in EVE this sort of thing literally destroys months and even years of progress for a player.

    Achilles knew this. He also knew that by doing this he just further cemented his name in EVE’s history. You can’t tell me it wasn’t on his mind. Achilles either became bored with the game or frustrated that ArsC was not achieving “his” goals. He chose to go out by taking as many people with him as possible. That is clear and present addiction. If he had been satisfied with his time spent he would of left graciously. He didn’t. He is addicted. He is probably already playing again.

    And as a side note. The reason you can’t trust anyone in EVE is because CCP refuses to draw a line between acceptable and unacceptable behavior in and out of game. Everything goes and CCP rarely gets involved unless it deals directly with an exploit.

    On top of this there is such POOR control over corporations in EVE that it truly made me nervous to give up my first load of rat loot. Even after my trust was fully give to ArsC I would often keep valuable (to me) items in my own control. I never threw anything into the corp hangers specifically to avoid getting screwed. I would give it up if needed to a member, but it was never free for the taking.

    A final story. Achilles gave me full control of the corp BPO’s one day simply so I could manufacture some ammo. I normally did not have any rights to the BPOs. When I realized that every single BPO was there for my taking I thought about taking them and running. I didn’t though, because the game DIDN’T MEAN THAT MUCH TO ME. If I had been helplessly addicted to the game I would have bolted with the BPOs in tow.

    Achilles has to realize he made this decision. He is rationalizing it by blaming others for being addicted. Denial is the first stage. People rarely act differently online than in real life. The persona you find online is OFTEN TIMES the persona you find in real life. Unfortunately, the freedom of the Internet magnifies that persona times ten. For Achilles to say this doesn’t reflect on his real life is a joke. I am ashamed to even think that he belongs to the same real life military that I do.

  20. “and CCP rarely gets involved unless it deals directly with an exploit.”

    Or ot help their friends/corp… :P

    Sorry couldn’t resist

    @Lachek

    As Ethic said I was giving my reason why I myself can’t get in to the game. The tracking suggestion I posted I know would somewhat break the immersion, but it is the only possible solution I can see (well actually I placed a suggestion that could help prevent this in my first post at the top) that could exact SOME sort of justice after the fact.

    The Wild West anything goes attitude is all well and good but even in the Wild West there was a way to get back at the lawbreakers if the outcry was enough.

  21. “A final story. Achilles gave me full control of the corp BPO’s one day simply so I could manufacture some ammo. I normally did not have any rights to the BPOs. When I realized that every single BPO was there for my taking I thought about taking them and running. I didn’t though, because the game DIDN’T MEAN THAT MUCH TO ME. If I had been helplessly addicted to the game I would have bolted with the BPOs in tow.”

    I have been placed in the same situation before, and made the same choice, but the temptation was there – yet, I don’t think (at least for me) it had anything to do with addiction to the game. I did not think “hey, I could screw my friends and make some mulah” – I thought “Hey, would my character take this stuff and run if given a chance? Could my character potentially start a new life somewhere else? Would that life be better for him? Would the reward be worth the risk?”

    In the end, I decided my character was happy where he was in his career and there was no reason for him to risk ticking off a faction for the purpose of greatly increasing his personal wealth (he’d probably just have blown it on Crystal Egg and Exotic Dancers anyway). If I had made the opposite choice, I wouldn’t have felt personally horrible – I was playing the game, and would certainly have kept my character around for my old corp to target practice on.

    An interesting parallel in my real-life is Magic the Gathering (the collectible card game) which I used to play back in the mists of time. I stopped playing, even though I liked its gameplay, because my circle of friends started backstabbing each other, purposely making very unbalanced trades by supplying wrong information, and actually in some cases resorting to stealing cards from each other. There is no “character” to hide behind in this case, and the rulebook does not state that card stealing is a facet of the game – that was pure and simple crookery. That behaviour, I’d say, is analogous to the “screw your corpmates, buy new character, transfer money, nuke old character” issue being discussed here – in-game, in-character backstabbing is a different beast entirely.

  22. “The Wild West anything goes attitude is all well and good but even in the Wild West there was a way to get back at the lawbreakers if the outcry was enough.”

    As I mentioned, Wild West mob justice – I’d like to see that too. The problem is that EvE has a rather complex system for tracking a character’s “legality” in the eyes of the NPC police, which is the same system that allows for sections of the universe being tagged as relatively safe space for n00bz, carebears, crafters and daytraders (and macro miners, but that’s a different issue). If a group of people had the ability to arbitrarily modify someone’s Security Status, thus tagging that person for safe killing and bounties, based on the breach of an unspoken agreement, then that system would be immediately abused to banish powerful characters that operate within the confines of the law from safe space. Thus, a system for allowing a group to deliver mob justice unto another character without repercussion would break other facets of the game, facets that protect players from being exploited and griefed in the first place.

    It’s tricky, and still wouldn’t protect from money transfers to characters on other accounts.

  23. ” If a group of people had the ability to arbitrarily modify someone’s Security Status, thus tagging that person for safe killing and bounties, based on the breach of an unspoken agreement, then that system would be immediately abused to banish powerful characters that operate within the confines of the law from safe space. Thus, a system for allowing a group to deliver mob justice unto another character without repercussion would break other facets of the game, facets that protect players from being exploited and griefed in the first place.”

    Which is why I didn’t suggest the player base be the ones to meet out justice. The only way it can come about is if CCP where to take a direct hand in it.

    The only other way I can think of is to prevent it from happening in the first place with a restriction of some sort on what a single player can take out/away from a corp/org/clan without some type of “voting system by the officers”. It could STILL happen if all the ones with the “I approve this” power decided ot be jerks but it cuts down on the likelihood.

  24. I think the majority is in agreement that CCP needs to put far better Corp controls into place. I won’t even begin to suggest ideas as I have little experience in leading a corp. I would start with a system that prevents the “one person controls all” aspect to prevent deliberate traitors from taking down an entire corp.

    The sad part of all of this is that EVE begins and ends with it’s Corporations. The game SUCKS if you ask me for everyday non-organized gameplay. The game is driven and is successful because of the Corporations. CCP better start preventing situations like this from occurring or people will just keep on quitting. What’s sad is that stories like this actually attract players like Achilles back to the game again for one more scam :( Everytime CCP let’s it fly it gets worse for Joe Blow Pilot.

  25. I guess there’s a difference between playing (or roleplaying, if you want) a thief or a scumbag and *being* a thief and a scumbag.

    I wonder if you had walked up to Achilles six months or a year ago and said “Hey, why don’t you give me all your T2 BPOs? Hmm? It’s only pixels, anyway. It’s only a game!”, if he would have parted with them oh so merrily. He decided to be an idiot and did what he did, from what I hear from friends in the former ArsC, more than likely because he wasn’t getting his way with a lot of things, and he’s the kind of person that seems to almost pathologically *need* to have his way all the time.

    I’ve always laughed to myself at the “It’s only a game!” comment and crowd. Yes, it’s only a game when you get tired of it, or when you don’t want to own up for messing things up or letting people down. Before that, it was as much of a serious thing for you as it was for everyone else. Spare me the histrionics of trying to appear casual-gamery and unattached. Everyone knows what’s up.

    I’ve never been personally attracted to EVE, primarily for its predominantly PVP gameplay. Right or wrong as I might be, my experience tells me that kind of gameplay always attracts the most unsavory elements. Of course there are exceptions, but that’s been my experience. Other than that, and as this latest gaffe from Achilles illustrates, I’d never play a game that allows for one person to kick the game board for a lot of other players, ruin the good times of others and remain just like that, without as much as a temp-ban.

    One shouldn’t be surprised if the game that allows so much freedom to play and operate as a theif and a scumbag, curiously, ends up being played by a lot of thieves and scumbags.

    CCP’s (non)stance on issues like this one and others only underscores for me the fact that I shouldn’t touch EVE with a ten foot pole.

  26. A successful businessman once told me that to succeed in business, a man has to be willing to abandon his friends, and in some cases, his family. Seems to me that to be successful in EVE, the same principles must be embraced. I have heard lots of people say that they had chances to rob the corp and didn’t out of guilt, loyalty, or the fact that to them, theft equates to addiction, and my guess is that none of those people will ever become an EVE CEO. On the contrary, it is probably only a matter of time before these good samaritans fall victim to the greed and ambitions of another and quit playing.

    Is it sad that you have to have a rob or get robbed attitude in EVE? Maybe. But as many have pointed out, one of the best parts of EVE is probably the risk associated with success. Having never played-but read quite a bit about- EVE, I know that should I ever pick up that game, I would inevitably turn into one of the “crooks” that you all are flaming; not because I am a crook in real life, but because that is what it takes to attain true success in a game like EVE.

  27. @Lachek’s RP reasoning for his non theft (which I agree could be a viable reasoning).

    My question about that is if you HAD stolen those items would you have stayed on the same account with the same pilot and accepted the consequences of your actions?

    If you would that makes you different from just about every one of these people who have run a scam on someone. They stole those items or money then they cut and ran to a new account or character.

    That is the difference between role playing a thief and liar, and actually BEING a thief and a liar.

    @Wolfgangdoom

    It’s not really the theft that bothers me but that the people who do the stealing then just fade away and escape any kind of retribution/justice/vengeance due to a flaw in CCP’s vision/design.

  28. Rand, you have a valid point there. Personally, had I “stolen” millions of ISK, I would keep the same name and take what came as it may. I’m sure there are other corps out there who would be willing to provide me with some sort of protection even if I had to pay for it.

    I’m not sure how much a new ship runs, but something tells me that bankrupting a large corp would provide more than enough money and materials to create a fleet of ships for personal use. It’s all about high points in video games, and I can’t think of anything more exciting than taking the money, running, and then living to tell the tale; even if my new corp is nothing more than an association of virtual “scumbags” just like myself. For a character to change their name after the fact to me defeats the purpose of a hostile takeover. Any good pirate would want their name out there for the masses to loathe and admire.

  29. @ Rand ‘al Thor & wolfgangdoom

    Absolutely. I don’t understand, to use WoW terminology, the reasoning for wanting to suddenly appear out of the blue with a level 60 wielding the Glowing Mace of Retribution. If I’m playing to impress people (I’m not) then I’d want to impress by having had a history in the game of working hard and making good moves.

    To put it even simpler, I wouldn’t want my name to just appear on the ladder of high-scoring chess masters, I would want people to know that I beat a number of people listed on there, be able to recount especially good maneuvers I’d made, to know my play style and be surprised when I divert from it.

    The insta-60s with equipment lists full of nothing but purples and oranges really have only two possible motivations – instant access to high-level content, or as compensation for something. Since EvE provides for instant access to high-level content immediately if you join the right corp – you could even run high-level “dungeons” successfully as a young character if you had a group of more powerful friends with you – that isn’t an appeal at all.

    This leaves the fellas that need to compensate for something else in their lives. I don’t think that’s the vast majority of EvE players by any means, but it *is* probably the vast majority of the griefing population in EvE. I do not think that it is necessary to grief to have a successful run in EvE at all, but I do think that – as always – a bad apple can rot the whole barrel.

    I maintain that for CCP to intervene directly into this type of abuse would be against the premise of EvE, but I do believe that they should utilize their Contract system to its fullest extent and provide suitable penalties for characters that break contracts with other players or player groups. It would also be interesting to implement an optional “shareholder” driven corporation model, where the CEO and his officers wouldn’t necessarily have direct control of the corporate wallet and resources without prior shareholder approval. Finally, they really should do something to ensure that large currency and resource transfers are monitored to prevent *out-of-character* abuse.

  30. “It would also be interesting to implement an optional “shareholder” driven corporation model, where the CEO and his officers wouldn’t necessarily have direct control of the corporate wallet and resources without prior shareholder approval. ”

    That’s sort of the concept I had in mind with the “vote” thing

    “Finally, they really should do something to ensure that large currency and resource transfers are monitored to prevent *out-of-character* abuse.”

    Ok fine they track it but then what to do with it? I said as much in a previous post and thats where the “don’t want to break immersion” argument came from. So CCP tracks these huge money transfers, and it’s linked back to them screwing over their corp, what would you have them do then?

    Not knocking the idea just want to see it fleshed out more, because me personally I can’t see a way to do anything with that information without breaking the immersion in some way.

  31. Oh and I do have an argument against the “immersion” faction. These scammers have already broken the immersion by using mechanics that are not in the game world itself. So CCP using non game world mechanics to bring them to justice in my eyes hurts it no more than they(the scammers/thieves) already have.

  32. @ Rand:
    Tracking large money transfers and character total asset value (which would be a very straightforward database query, by the way, so not rocket science) would IMHO be a good idea both to monitor possible abuses along the lines we’re discussing or breach-of-EULA RMT situations, and also as an indicator to get an idea of the flux of the economic game state.
    As far as what should be done, if the type of intra-character or intra-account asset transfers we’re discussing here is against the EULA, then CCP can interfere. As you said, immersion has at this point already been broken and there is nothing further immersion breaking about nuking the offending account and destroying the contested assets. The EULA would definitely have been broken if, as suggested here, the new account was pre-leveled and sold on eBay.
    Aside from EULA breaches, there have been examples of CCP breaking down and changing the game state when under pressure from a sufficiently large group of slighted players. I’m not sure how often these sorts of scams occur, but it seems to be infrequently enough that they can be dealt with on a case-by-case basis.
    I am absolutely against CCP setting up any kind of “system” for dealing with these sorts of issues, as those “systems” would undoubtedly be themselves exploited, though in other ways.

    Having said that, my friends idea over on Nicodemus’ post is now my new official suggestion for how to handle the issue. :)

  33. Unfortunately voting mechanisms wouldn’t work. People are stupid and will just play “follow the leader” anyways for fear of getting owned. If you don’t vote a certain way you probably will get bullied. Voting systems just wouldn’t work.

  34. If player A (the leader) decided to take everything out at once, I would hope players B, C ,D , E ,and F (the officers) would go hey wait a minute, and click no. Now if they were stupid enough to let it pass no sympathy for them.

    Oh and i’m not talking for minor transactions should this be there but for major deals. If a person’s Corp/clan/guild is worth a damn the officers will all know what the hell is going on. Now if your group is run by a bunch of idiots/jerks that’s your own issue for being there and you should never put your personal stuff in with them :P

  35. I find it odd that the same people who were GHSC fanboys are whining about corp theft in this instance, but thats just me.

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