Friday, January 2, 2015

CCP's War On Illicit RMT - End Of Year Rush

While many people are waiting on the results of CCP's enforcement of input broadcasting, input multiplexing, and the general enforcement of Section 6A3 of the EVE Online EULA, I'm more interested in the price of illicit ISK.  Following CCP Falcon's post about input broadcasting, I started monitoring the Player Auctions website again to see if anything unusual would occur.

The first was a sharp rise in the purchase of ISK following the publication of the security dev blog on 19 December.  In the dev blog, CCP Grimmi announced a change in the punishment for those who purchase ISK outside of the PLEX system.  The penalties increased to a 7-day suspension of all accounts for a first offense and a permanent ban of all accounts for a second offense.  I'm not sure that the following day's sales volume of 109 billion ISK sold the next day was a direct result of the dev blog, but the possibility exists.  I don't have figures from December 2013 to do a proper comparison, but 58% of the ISK sales I was able to track occurred in the final 13 days of the month.

Of course, another reason so much illicit ISK was sold in the final two weeks of the year was due to someone holding a fire sale.  A new seller created an account Christmas night and started selling ISK at 40-45% of the going market price.  From 26-28 December, the individual managed to sell 185 billion ISK.  The dip in the graph on those three days shows the effect the one seller had on the market.  The same seller then delisted until 31 December, when the account sold another 21 billion ISK.

A funny thing happened.  The seller appeared on the site by noon EVE time but by 8pm when I looked again, the seller had disappeared.  Either the seller ran out of ISK, or CCP tracked down the seller's assets in-game.  Currently, I don't have enough information to say one way or the other.  But distributing that much ISK that quickly may have made the seller very noticeable.

What does January have in store?  I'm not sure, although with the new policies hopefully players will turn to purchasing PLEX from a reputable source instead of going to shady ISK sellers.  But only time will tell.  Then again, perhaps if a lot of players start receiving bans, that will get the message out about not patronizing the ISK sellers.

1 comment:

  1. I wonder how many people were actually stupid enough to think "I need to buy/sell a lot of RMT ISK now, before the stricter penalties go into effect" and created a noticeable blip.

    They probably fail to understand that the old penalties (and the new ones) are only an in-house policy which CCP isn't actually required by any law to follow. They judge each EULA infraction on a case-by-case basis - if they feel that you knew what you were doing and were deliberately trying to get around the EULA (ex. I get one, or two, free "avoid permaban" card(s) - I might as well use them), they can choose to permaban you on a first offense. I know a few (ex)players to whom this happened.

    My advice to all of those players who bought or sold enough "last minute" illegal ISK to put them on CCP's radar is turn themselves in and forfeit the ISK. CCP is much more forgiving of people who come forward and admit wrongdoing, before they actually get caught (CCP can also choose to be more lenient than their policy states).