Three sides to every coin

August 8, 2011
Three sides to every coin

About this comic

If any of you have heard me on either The Instance or The Final Score, you know I think this new auction house is a great way for Blizzard to head off the black market at the pass, and own this part of their game, without the underworld doing it for them. I like it! Still fun to make fun of in comic form though. :)

35 Responses to Three sides to every coin

  1. Light says:

    Love the comic. Not a big deal, but it should be “hard-to-find drops”.

  2. Karlotius says:

    This is the same principle as Holland does with weed being allowed to be sold in coffee houses. It kills the black market and all the problems the come from it outright.
    Fantastic idea.

    • Dutch JaFO says:

      LOL … for real.
      Weed is illegal for all intents and purposes.
      What we do is “gedogen” which is a verb you can not and should not translate as “allow” even though that is the endresult.

      In essence this is how some MMO’s “allow” the sale of virtual items for money. They merely allow it because it takes too much time and effort to catch the criminals responsible.

  3. I learnt a new word today xD MERF!

  4. Joel says:

    Question: I realize that Diablo is not an MMO, but on the FrogPants network this week the idea of real money auction houses in an MMO has bled over from this discussion. I have yet to catch up on The Instance, but in an MMO doesn’t this sort of thing run the risk of catering to those who can/are willing to pay real world money for items over those who can’t/choose not to? Would this not give more wealthy players an unfair advantage?

    • Moongoat says:

      Well, but that already happens in every other MMO too, only then its done by a bunch or 3rd parties. Now its just regulated by blizzard…

    • Borkoman says:

      You have to realize that those wealthier players will be providing money to potentially less-than wealthy players. They in turn can either purchase more goods, or stash the money IRL. It’s not like Blizzard is going to pocket all the money.

    • Dutch JaFO says:

      This is not any different than :
      – buying a faster pc …
      – getting better internet
      – a bigger monitor or multiple monitors ..

      More money to burn != better skilled

  5. MXC says:

    Anybody with half a brain should realize that the #1 rule when it comes to dealing with real world money is to NEVER SELL POWER. That is exactly what Blizzard is doing, and it sickens me. It’s truly sad to see how easy it is to find people who will take any amount of X up their rear if it means that they will get their game.

    • Explain/…I don’t get the “never sell power” thing.

      • Dramble says:

        I believe MXC is referring to people being able to become more powerful than other players by purchasing the best equipment.
        There are a few flaws with this reasoning, primarily in Hardcore mode, where players will be fighting to be the best, Blizzard has stated that players will be unable to use this system.
        Also, it is impossible for a player to simply buy the game and then become the strongest by only paying money. Players will need to level up to even use the high level items and skill will have a much larger impact on the gameplay than equipment. (This is based on my experience playing at Blizzcon ’08 & ’10, so perhaps items will have a larger impact than I have experienced.)
        Lastly, this would have happened without Blizzard’s involvement so Blizzard overseeing things will only make it better. Blizzard isn’t the one selling players better items, they are selling them to each other and Blizzard is requiring a small fee to keep the system up and regulate the quality of items.
        Gaming is trending in this direction and it’s better to spend energy improving on the systems and making it more fair for the community than to say this idea can never ever work.

      • Tekrelm says:

        Take another look at this screenshot and pay attention to the categories on the left. http://www.gamespot.com/pc/rpg/diablo3/images/0/1/?tag=thumbs_below%3Bthumb%3B1

        I feel the need to point out that, yes, you can indeed buy the game and become the strongest right away. People everywhere seem to be overlooking the fact that Blizzard is letting people sell their CHARACTERS, too. Not just items. If you were so inclined, you could buy a level 99 Wizard with full purples right off the bat. There’d be nothing left to do in the game, of course, but that’s the problem with this auction house in the first place; generally, it just lets people cheat themselves out of playing the game, and people with deep pockets in real life will always be ahead.

        “What’s wrong with that?” you may ask. Well, yeah. Aside from it being bothersome to see others lord their expendable income over you and then lose interest in the game shortly afterward, not a ton. Unless you’re talking PvP, where it’s just plain unfair.

        You can reiterate that this isn’t Blizzard selling characters and items from an infinite warehouse, and that each of these things are indeed earned from an actual player, but we all know “player” is gonna be a loose term here when we start to see all the businesses at work farming up stock on hundreds of accounts 24/7. Which, as a side note, will make it really hard for actual players to make a worthwhile amount of money in exchange for rare items when the competition is that entrenched and makes its money on volume.

    • 1. Diablo’s not an MMO, so the affect on other people’s experience is very minimal. The worst you can think of would be PvP, but seriously, screw PvP. If you go into that, you know what you’re possibly getting into.

      2. Players are selling things on the AH. Not Blizzard. Players were doing that anyway, and in some cases getting scammed badly for it. It makes sense for Blizzard to institute this to protect their playerbase.

      3. If you don’t like it, don’t effing use it and don’t play with people who do. Not hard.

      4. Everyone seems to be terrified this is going to spill over into WoW or whatever the heck Titan ends up being. Seriously people, I really doubt it’s going to come to that. You’re losing your minds over something that is really not as bad as you’re making it out to be.

      • MXC says:

        The people who used real money for ingame items in WoW knew the risks, and they did it anyway due to their own impatience. They brought it upon themselves.. What Blizzard is doing is encouraging that now instead of frowning on it like they did only a year or so ago.

  6. Borkoman says:

    It’s not selling power. It’s spreading the wealth.

    • MXC says:

      By encouraging others to sell power for them. With a fee to use the service, a fee to post your item, a fee to acknowledge that someone bought you’re item, and a final fee to put the money on your Paypal account.

  7. Dramble says:

    What you can’t quite make out are those are thousand dollar bills wrapped in platinum bands.

    • Pradeep says:

      Hi Lubos! Looks like we got about 20-24 inches of snow here in Arlington(next to Cambridge) It has drfetid from the wind, so is different heights in different spots. Looks like same class as 2005 storm – thx for those photos, nice to have a perspective. So much endless hype about storms now – the governor declared a statewide travel ban still in effect. That hasn’t happened since 1978 I question the need for it. Sane people don’t drive in blizzards unless they have an emergency. More nanny state stuff. Snow looks pretty now, a lot of shoveling ahead later today. : )

  8. Torticoli says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever read anyone arguing over the Internet in such a civilized and polite manner as the two guys in the comic : p

    Regarding the actual issue, I’d strongly recommend listening to TotalBiscuit’s comment, here : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GBrESZJlNvQ He explains pretty well, in my opinion, why this is a bad idea. He gives a bunch of reasons, at least, there are more. Anyone who’s intrigued by this system should listen to this, I think, as well as other comments, before making up their own mind.

    (Scott, I hope there’s no problem posting a link to a TB video here ; he’s not covering any content that could compete with yours anymore)

  9. KharneUK says:

    Blizzard explained the reasoning with the phrase “You can do it anyway – so this is just making it more controlled”. However this only applies to those that WOULD use the black markets to buy better characters/equipment.

    Players like me (and I would hope also MOST players) would never even consider buying an item on eBay or some other black market method – and this puts the possibility within my reach.

    Now part of the experience will be lessened for me – I could spend 4 hours fighting my way down to the Fearless Frog wearing Pants boss – and slay him earning that big 2 Handed Axe of Derp and feeling immense pride equipping it on my barbarian – but if I peek at the real money AH and spot the same item there for 59p it would seem pointless – and I would either spend the cash to get the item and miss out on that awesome feeling, or work my way towards it – and get a similar (but lessened) feeling of success knowing I could have clicked twice and had it 3 hours earlier.

    Also why would you post anything valuable/desirable on the gold auction house? If theres a chance of making real money – you would simply place it on the real money auction house – creating an in-game-gold AH full of only the junk and a real life AH with all the decent equipment.

    Saying that it would not change the average players experience negatively seems very ignorant to me when I think about it…

  10. Orotav says:

    How bout this. If you don’t like it, don’t use it. You can play the game by yourself and not do anything via the ah. Does it change the experience for you if you pretend its not there? No probably not. If this were in an mmo where people would be affected by farmers just hanging out 24/7 I could see this being a problem but since its not I can’t see why you just can’t ignore it.

    • Tukan says:

      You really make it seem so easy with your psrteneation but I find this matter to be really something that I think I would never understand. It seems too complicated and extremely broad for me. I am looking forward for your next post, I’ll try to get the hang of it!

  11. Donnerberg says:

    The last frame should say “More!”

    But I could be missing an inside pun with merf…

  12. Chuck says:

    Why are people buying items for a single player game?

    Is the tack-on PVP mode really going to be worth anything?

    • Donnerberg says:

      Well, Diablo 2 was a pretty mindblowing LAN game at the time. Like the Serious Sam of dungeon crawlers. If D3 manages to do the same thing on the Internet, then sure, people will shit money on Blizzard (again).

    • Dutch JaFO says:

      Diablo 3 has no real single-player mode at all as everything is ‘connected’ or ‘social’.
      So it’s not a “tacked-on PVP mode” but more likely a “tacked-on single player campaign”.

  13. Peter1x9 says:

    I just hope Diablo 3 doesn’t turn into the bad joke that Diablo 2 became. Diablo 2 ended up so full of botters and spammers that I just uninstalled it and threw my copy in the trash. To top it all off, Diablo 2 wasn’t even a co-op game to begin with. The drop system was so bad that it ended up being a game of fight/argue/use automation to get the drop before your “teammate” does. Fortunately Diablo 3 will have a better drop system…but I’m going still going to wait at least a few months after the release to get it, just so I’m sure that it doesn’t turn into another item seller’s and botter’s paradise.

  14. Lustpanzer says:

    MXC…. my friend. There are people who enjoy “playing” the auction house. You happen to know at least two. Being able to buy and sell “power” has not affected you adversely and should not deter you from engaging with people who have.

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