Wednesday, April 11, 2012

CCP's War On Bots: A Matter Of Scale

In his dev blog last week, CCP Sreegs stated he expected to seize 100 billion isk a day from botting accounts.  But how much money is that really?  Using the average sales price in The Forge in March 2012, it converts to 205 PLEX.  Over a month, that is 6,150 PLEX, or over $107,000.  That sounds like a lot, but is it in the context of Eve Online?  Here are some other figures that puts CCP Sreegs expectations into perspective.  The amounts have been converted to the PLEX value at the time of the event in order to account for inflation.
So how much money does CCP Sreegs think he will remove from the New Eden economy?  To keep up with CCP Sreegs, the Goons would need to scam the price of 8 carriers every day.  People would need to lose 3 PLEX-laden Kestrels in Jita every day.  On a grander scale, CCP Sreegs thinks he will seize assets equaling the combined values of the EBank & Titans4U scandals and the Phaser Inc ponzi scam every month.

How about at the macro-economic scale?  CCP Sreegs' operation would become the fourth largest isk sink in the game following skillbooks, blueprints and fees/taxes.  If he is right about the effectiveness of his team they will remove the equivalent of 34% of all isk made by players running incursions.  If everything stays the same the seizure of botters assets will reduce the growth of New Eden's money supply by 11%.

But everything is not staying the same.  As both Jester and Kirith Kodachi have noted, CCP plans to not only remove alloy drops from rogue drones but are removing meta 0 drops as well.  With this shift of obtaining minerals to miners, CCP Sreegs will face pressure as the incentive to run mining bots grows.  I wonder if this possibility is factored into CCP Sreegs' calculations on how many assets he expects to seize.


1 - Average price of PLEX in The Forge, December 2011 (441,690,419 isk).  Eve Market UI, The Forge region.

2 - June 2009 price of PLEX (300 million isk).  Quarterly Economic Newsletter, Q4 2010, p 46.

3 - Calculated using the $16,500 value of the losses suffered by Ubiqua Seraph.  PLEX did not exist in 2005.

4 - Average price of PLEX in The Forge, March 2012 (486,879,049 isk).  Eve Market UI, The Forge region.

5a - State of the Economy presentation, Fanfest 2012. (32:45 minute mark)

5b - State of the Economy presentation, Fanfest 2012. (27 minute mark)

6 - Eve Market UI, The Forge region.


  1. I think Sreegs will simply see mining bots as creating a target-rich environment. Although for some people reduction in mineral production makes Eve worse there are just as many others who will be excited and interested by the opportunities.

    And of course fighting botters and RMTers just encourages people to buy plex from CCP instead so their revenue per player goes up even if a few players quit.

    The business case for fighting botters is rock solid and Sreegs won't feel pressure to go soft on them from his management. If people simply buy plex to counter the value he removes that's an extra $107,000 per month for CCP.

  2. @Stabs - You're right about the business case being rock solid. In fact, I would not be surprised if Sony is putting pressure on to control the botting. The pressure on CCP Sreegs is to at the least contain the botters to current levels if not reduce it severely.