74,000 WoW Classic accounts just got the banhammer for botting and other cheats

    
16
Very mature.

This’ll shock you, but not everyone playing WoW Classic is doing it for the thrill of an arguably more hardcore experience: Some people are just cheaters. And Blizzard is banning them left and right.

Specifically, Blizzard’s post on the WoW Classic forums last night says it’s banned 74,000 WoW accounts it “found to be in violation of [its] End-User License Agreement 28” – most of them for “using gameplay automation tools, typically to farm resources or kill enemies much more efficiently than legitimate players can.” In other words, botters.

“Like you, we play World of Warcraft. We understand what it’s like to spot a player in-game who appears to be botting. We always want to eliminate the botting player, if it can be proved that they are indeed cheating. And that raises a big difficulty in addressing this issue – we have to prove to ourselves that the accused player is not a person who’s actually controlling a character with their hands on a keyboard. We use powerful systems to determine if the suspected player is using an identifiable cheat, and our heuristics (which we do not outline publicly) are constantly improving and evolving. But when we examine a suspect and these measurements aren’t out of line, we have to manually gather evidence against the accused player, which can be very time consuming and complex. It’s worthwhile though, because we never want to take action against a legitimate player.”

Ultimately, Blizzard seems to be pinning the blame for these kinds of activities on RMT, though of course those services exist only because players buy from them, and people buy from them for many reasons often rooted in the game’s design itself, so it’s a bit more complicated that it seems on the surface. “Real money trading drives third parties to put an enormous amount of effort into circumventing our detection systems,” the studio says. “As much as this is a very high priority for us, it is the only priority for profit-driven botting organizations. The bans we issue are simply a cost of doing business for them.”

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Denice J. Cook

So you mean all the “bots bots bots” threads and “bots bots bots now with more bots” threads lighting the Classic General Forums on fire for several months now have finally been noticed?

The funniest part was when, several days ago, a mod posted about how surprising it was that Classic servers had queues and lag, and how hard it was for Blizzard to figure out why!

Many forum posters wondered if Blizzard had been taking payola from all those blatantly obvious gold farmers and gold spammers to look the other way. People have posted that WoW’s servers in China just had WoW tokens put in, which drove all their organized crime groups here to the US servers instead.

Pepperzine
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Pepperzine

people buy from them for many reasons often rooted in the game’s design itself

This assertion appears unreasonable because it implies there is a viable alternative in design. It’s extremely challenging to design an mmorpg that doesn’t have currency exchange which is the only way to eliminate this, and removing currency exchange limits the social interactions of players which is the exact reason most people play online games.

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Tanek

“people buy from {RMT}for many reasons often rooted in the game’s design itself”

While true, I’m not sure this is as valid an argument when it comes to WoW Classic. Anyone jumping in on those servers should know better than most what they are in for.

Some of the mechanics were changed over time for good reasons. But you chose to go back to them with Classic.

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Armsman

Banned for Botting and Gold Selling/Farming…??

(I thought Blizzard was ON BOARD with giving everyone the “Classic WoW” experience… ;) )

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Does not check email

Only 74000?

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jealouspirate

The gold selling situation is even worse than “real” vanilla due to the very large servers, more limited resources relative to population (ore, herbs, etc), and a playerbase that has had 15 years to optimize gold farming. All this resulted in everything in Classic being absurdly expensive, hence increased demand for RMT.

The most effective thing Blizzard has ever done to combat bots and illegal gold selling is the WoW Token, but the perpetually outraged Classic community would be even more outraged than usual if Blizzard added it to Classic.

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Sleepy

How big is a full server pop in WoW? That seems like an awful lot of accounts.

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Loopy

Conservative estimates put the server population anywhere from 6-10k per server.

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Denice J. Cook

The largest ones have over 10,000 active players each. https://ironforge.pro/servers/?locale=US&realm=PvP-PvE

Blizzard has added layering to a number of servers to try and address this issue, after enabling free transfers for months and having almost no one leave the affected servers. They also occasionally lock servers so new players can’t roll on them, but of course friends and families of the affected players squawk about that.

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Alberto

Thank God..finally

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Greaterdivinity

I’m…actually kinda sad. I hope my bot friends I exploited for tons of free skinning aren’t gone. I enjoyed tagging mobs and letting them kill them for me or just profiting off of all the free leather from their kills.

(this is good though!)

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Dug From The Earth

“we want a game that you cant just speed through, one where you have to take the time to do things and really work to acquire anything”

* sets up automated bot program to gather/fish/grind mobs