Star Trek Online player is banned following lifetime subscription refund bungle

    
59
Star Trek Online player is banned following lifetime subscription refund bungle

File this one under “no good deed goes unpunished”: A 10-year veteran of Star Trek Online who picked up a lifetime sub to the game recently ended up with a banned account thanks to technical and customer support difficulties.

Norwegian Redditor MattPoly detailed the situation on the game’s subreddit, explaining the circumstances that led to his account’s banning after having some issues with a perk related to the lifetime sub. According to the story, MattPoly had asked support about one of the lifetime subscriber benefits of additional shared bank slots, which were for unknown reasons not probably applied. Initally, support told him he’d already gotten all of his benefits and there was nothing more that could be done. The player then replied with another ticket complete with screenshots to corroborate his story, which was met with the same response. He then submitted a third ticket asking to either have the issue fixed or have his lifetime sub refund, which earned the reply that “attempts on [his] part to get [his] money back would have serious repercussion to [his] account.”

Following the advice of a US-based lawyer, MattPoly sent Cryptic a formal letter of complaint, asking for a refund or to be contacted about the situation within seven days or face legal action. This was met with the following response, which was both shared in a copied post and in an image of the reply:

After further review, we’ve granted a refund to your account. However the account will be banned. The funds should be visible in 5-7 business days. Feel free to contact us again if you have further questions.

Thank you for playing.

Regards,
GM DragonAsh, Senior Game Master

One reply to the matter suggested that MattPoly may had already maxed out his shared bank slots, but the OP explained that he was not maxed out despite having used Silver to get 10 slots around 2012-2013. The vast majority of players urged him to reach out to Ambassador Kael, which he says he has already done, though like many such loyal MMO players mistreated by customer support he appears to be beaten down by the event.

“At this point my account matters less and less due to the thought of having such a bad and unpredictable support system in place. This would always be in the back of my mind. Even starting a brand new one free account could be preferable. Ironically enough I’m sure if I had bought lifetime for a new account, all the rewards would be there without issue. The other side of this is the love for Trek, regardless of developers, publishers etc. That stings.”

We don’t often cover these sorts of account actions, as we’re well aware that in most cases, we’re getting only one side of a story and that studios can rarely comment to defend themselves. However, in this case, the situation is well-documented, and while it might be understandable that a studio would be tempted or obliged to ban any account that suggested legal restitution whether just or not, it’s still one hell of a bad look for the game and its customer support. We’re fans of Star Trek Online around here, so we’re very much hoping that PWE and Cryptic will rethink this one.

source: Reddit

No posts to display

59
LEAVE A COMMENT

Please Login to comment
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most liked
Subscribe to:
Reader
Franklin Adams

Sounds like Craptic. I haven’t played or given them a fucking red cent since they got rid of the foundry because they couldn’t find a way to nickle and dime people over it, while blaming technical issues that they never specified.

Funny thing is I was going to buy a lifetime sub, finally, then they announced the foundry shutdown the day I was gonna buy it. The money went somewhere else instead.

I’m not at all surprised they banned this guy, they probably figured he’d just go away. It’s probably not a good idea to try that on someone who obviously already has legal counsel but they’re pretty fucking inept.

Reader
Jeremy Zharkov

Like a lot of subscriber games that went F2P, you got some benefits if you used to be a subscriber.

That’s the case here. If you were a subscriber, you got various slots and you got to keep them if you stopped subscribing.

The lifetime sub slots aren’t in addition to this. They are these. So if you subbed before and then got a lifetime sub, you didn’t get more of them, because you already had the benefits

Clark Niklas
Reader
Clark Niklas

I have seen this suggestion getting thrown around. Yet no one has been able to link to any such statement from STO. Where is this information?

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Darthbawl

I get a little bit tempted anytime they put the lifetime sub on sale. Never actually bite though. This story is one of the reasons.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
NecroFox4

I’ve been tempted in the past, too. This story has turned me off from ever considering it again. And, in fact, it has really turned me off from ever spending another penny on STO altogether.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
NecroFox4

This one is rather disturbing to me.

PWE/Cryptic lists something for sale for a large sum of money.

You buy it, it doesn’t include what it listed, so you contact support.

Support tells you to kick rocks, they can’t be bothered.

You ask for your money back, and suddenly YOU’RE the one in the wrong, and get banned?

What in the hell is going on over at PWE/Cryptic that they think this makes any logical sense whatsoever?

Reader
dreamer

The lack of true consumer protections when it comes to stuff like this (and gaming in general) is the primary problem.

Reader
Bruno Brito

Honestly? Someone below said something i’m more inclined to believe:

They lack the expertise to simply revert accounts back to non-lifetime, so they ban them as a abrasive solution. Not far-fetched, considering that Cryptic’s development is a dumpsterfire.

Reader
James Crow

not that i agree with PWE but nowdays we all know when a player take a legal action or even cancel something they bought it mean the player going to get refund but also account ban.

Reader
Caley Kastigen

Its not a good look to be honest yet I also think Cryptic and PWE do not care about their actual image they just make money with their lootboxes and trundle along.

Sigh heres wishing for a Star Trek MMO from a good company (are there any? lol)

Reader
Knecht_Rootrecht

Star Trek Online is a very old game build on the foundation of an ever older one. It had lots and lots of spaghetti code and it wouldn’t surprise me if customer support was unable to solve the issue. Removing a lifetime sub might not even be possible under the circumstances so every time they do a refund, they also ban the account.

Speaking from someone with experience in customer support, contacting your lawyer escalates an issue quickly. In the company I worked at, every time a customer threatened legal actions or had his lawyer write a response, it was out of our hands. The entire matter had to be forwarded to the legal department and for them customer satisfaction was not a metric. They were more concerned with what they can get away with, legally speaking.

Reader
Zuldar

Not the kind of publicity they need when they’re about to launch a new game.

Reader
SmiteDoctor

Sure glad I had the insight to never waste any money on this SCUM BAG company.

Reader
RAsplez 98

Doesn’t surprise me. My account was previously wrongly banned for “scamming” people into purchasing my fleet. Essentially it was a “you give me half” and then “half after” the provisional promotion was complete. Unfortunately, this person was removed anomalously whether by some kind of bug or their own hand, but I had been offline for around a week.

I log on to find they had contacted me about the issue, in which time I sent a reply claiming to uphold the deal or provide a full refund, and apologised. However this person had already reported my account to cryptic, and I was unable to provide a refund to the affected player. My account was banned after a few days.

I proceeded to contact them via email and a ticket, but the reply was extremely short and no investigation was taken into the matter. They stood by the report and nothing could change their resolve.

I put the game down for about 2 years, angry at the progress and many many hours and days of my life I had lost to futility. Not to mention money. The thought that my account and all its characters; all its currency, items, and progress; is still out there, haunts me. All locked behind a simple line of text, telling me my account is banned. I did however eventually make another account, which I use to this day on a F2P basis. I contacted them many years later to reactivate the account, hoping the report had been forgotten and the issue could be resolved with a fresh pair of eyes. Alas, my efforts proved to still be in vain, as they stood by the same excuse they had given me years prior. And still; no investigation was taken.

It was essentially; merely; one person’s word against mine. The idleness, laziness, and idiocracy prevalent in their support staff is absolutely disgusting for lack of a better and more appropriate word.