Here's a fascinating interview with Andy Schneider, co-founder of Live Gamer, a firm that provides marketplaces for online game companies so that their players can engage in "real-money trades" -- sales of virtual items that are acquired through playing the game. This is presented as an alternative to "gold-farming," in which people in the developing world earn their living by amassing in-game wealth which is then sold on to impatient rich-world players who don't want to put in the hours necessary to gaining the wealth through their own play. The argument goes like this: legitimate marketplaces for "real" player-to-player exchanges will put "fake" players like gold farmers out of business. I'm skeptical: for one thing, the distinction between "real" players and "fake" players seems pretty arbitrary.
...[W]e spent a lot of time trying to understand the motivation of game players. Why do they engage in RMT? What are the hot-button issues? Does it break the fourth wall or the magic circle? Does it create an unfair advantage for players who are buying items that are giving them a performance advantage?
Real Money, Fake Property: Live Gamer's Andy Schneider on Bringing Item Sales in from the Cold
We looked at what these motivations are, and certainly there are players who want to get a performance advantage. But, there are also overwhelmingly more players who play MMOs and engage in RMT for social reasons.
The social reasons might be one of they want to play with friends who are leveling up faster than they are and they want to keep up, they want to play the game again from a different character class or race perspective, or they want to customize their experience - so they want to go ahead and buy the items that make them feel better about their character.
There's also the players who want to explore everything the game developer or designer has created, and they can't possibly do it because they don't have enough time.
In the end, all of these people engage in RMT because they don't have enough time, but they might have more disposable income. And that's the predominant reason why people that we see are engaging in RMT, and we certainly see all the arguments against RMT.
If you’re a woman on the Internet, harassment comes with the territory. There have been jerky dudes since time immemorial, after all. But with the advent of America’s militarized cops, sociopathic misogynists have a new, deadly force-multiplier in their war on women.
Leo spent 1,000 hours making these 17kg robotic cosplay wings, modeled on Kayle from League of Legends.
Sgt Crispy writes, “XKCD creator Randall Munroe, has made a spiffy little hoverboard game. Looks to be small, however, when you realize that boundaries are made to be broken, A massive world opens up to be explored.”
Don’t get handcuffed by Apple’s standard 3-foot Lightning cord (that you’ve most likely already lost), treat yourself to 10 feet of luxurious charging convenience. The Colossal is certified by Apple for its high-end quality, and designed to support full use of your phone while you power up. You can also get it in a 2-pack […]
Today and tomorrow only we are offering an additional 15% off the entire Boing Boing store (some exclusions may apply). Simply use coupon code: BLACKFRIDAY at checkout! Below are a few of our favorites from the store: First Generation Lytro 16GB Camera: The First Consumer Camera to Capture the Entire Light FieldAdobe Training Videos: Lifetime Subscription: 6,000+ Adobe […]
Today only in the Boing Boing Store we are offering an extra 15% off of the below VPN deals just use coupon code: VPN15 at checkout. proXPN VPN: Premium Lifetime Subscription Surf the web with ultimate peace of mind – both at home and on the road – over proXPN’s fully-encrypted, lightning-fast servers. Your lifetime premium subscription […]