I don't have a big post on CCP's War On Bots™ today. Sometimes patience is a good thing in watching the world of botting and illicit RMT. With Team Security's crackdown now entering its eighth month, most of the tears have dried up from the botting forums but I'm finding some interesting open source information that I need to develop. Until then I have a few thoughts on what is currently happening in the run-up to Retribution.
One thought is that the campaign to make botting socially unacceptable that CCP Stillman announced at Eve Vegas isn't coming too soon. Over the weekend I read on the Eve Pilot forums a thread in which a new botter had been caught for the first time but thought he could just alter his behavior and keep botting. The bot dev and long time users tried to warn the new botter that he needed to take additional measures to protect himself. I don't think the botter really believed the advice he received. I believe we are seeing a new wave of botters who have no fear of Team Security.
Another item I'm noticing is that the price of illicit ISK is coming down. Since I'm not an expert in the illicit ISK selling sites I am using the sites listed on MMOBUX. Over the past two weeks the median price has fallen 1.8% from $22.41 per 1 billion isk down to $22.00. Why? I don't know. I do know that the number of sites listed has declined from 34-36 when I looked at illicit ISK prices back in May down to 29 sites this morning. In fact, two sites were unlisted overnight with one site, IGEVE, displaying a page stating that the website is down last night. Are the two things related? One thing I do know from following Chribba's new website Eve Live that spambots are advertising in Jita local even cheaper rates than those found on MMOBUX.
My final thought extends past the Eve Gate and into the outside world. Is Team Security's effectiveness ultimately dependent on how other companies police botting and RMT? If new waves of players come into Eve from other games who believe that botting is acceptable will we ever be rid of our automated friends? Is John Smedley and SOE going to blow the implementation of Kronos and forget that the original idea of PLEX was to battle the illicit RMT trade? And is ArenaNet going to get its bot problem under control? Well, for now I just need to read Blagpuss' blog to know how the global war on bots is progressing on the Tyria front.