MBirchmeier

"Sometimes, there appears to be financial incentive for the game makers to be good — but not terrific — at stopping cheating. Consider this: Cheaters who get banned from games often immediately sign back up under a different user name, paying money for a new account in hopes of trying again. If cheating protections were significantly stronger, fewer perpetrators would continue to buy accounts."

This is quite possibly the most thought provoking statement in the article on gaming. I'd wager however that it's probablly wrong.

In at least the example of World of Warcraft, which the article sites, the cost of the game is $20. I'd imagine by the time you factor in the costs of packaging, distirbution, and materials, and the labor required to stop cheaters, I can't imagine there being *much* profit in lax enforcement as a business model.

I'm interrested to hear other views however.

Matt

Game cheating: It depends, really. I used to spend a lot of time playing a game called Diablo II, which was free to play online. Fairly regularly, someone would figure out how to cheat, and sell incredibly rare items (and some incredibly powerful ones they'd created themselves) and sell the results on eBay. These became so widespread that the company was forced to make the game harder, thus making it very difficult to play competitively without purchasing these items from eBay. Some people I know stopped playing because of this. Because it was a free game, they didn't lose money (and in fact may have saved some because of reduced costs), but were it a subscription service, they certainly would lose money. Also, the marginal cost on software is very small, so each additional unit sold generates a lot of profit.

As for the iPhone lawsuit: this may be the dumbest thing I have ever heard. I'm not sure whether her point is that Apple should not have acted in a way that she didn't "expect," or that cutting prices (ordinarily good for consumers) should be made illegal. I think everyone agrees it was bad PR on Apple's part, but calling it illegal smacks of idiocy.

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MBirchmeier

"Sometimes, there appears to be financial incentive for the game makers to be good - but not terrific - at stopping cheating. Consider this: Cheaters who get banned from games often immediately sign back up under a different user name, paying money for a new account in hopes of trying again. If cheating protections were significantly stronger, fewer perpetrators would continue to buy accounts."

This is quite possibly the most thought provoking statement in the article on gaming. I'd wager however that it's probablly wrong.

In at least the example of World of Warcraft, which the article sites, the cost of the game is $20. I'd imagine by the time you factor in the costs of packaging, distirbution, and materials, and the labor required to stop cheaters, I can't imagine there being *much* profit in lax enforcement as a business model.

I'm interrested to hear other views however.

Matt

Game cheating: It depends, really. I used to spend a lot of time playing a game called Diablo II, which was free to play online. Fairly regularly, someone would figure out how to cheat, and sell incredibly rare items (and some incredibly powerful ones they'd created themselves) and sell the results on eBay. These became so widespread that the company was forced to make the game harder, thus making it very difficult to play competitively without purchasing these items from eBay. Some people I know stopped playing because of this. Because it was a free game, they didn't lose money (and in fact may have saved some because of reduced costs), but were it a subscription service, they certainly would lose money. Also, the marginal cost on software is very small, so each additional unit sold generates a lot of profit.

As for the iPhone lawsuit: this may be the dumbest thing I have ever heard. I'm not sure whether her point is that Apple should not have acted in a way that she didn't "expect," or that cutting prices (ordinarily good for consumers) should be made illegal. I think everyone agrees it was bad PR on Apple's part, but calling it illegal smacks of idiocy.

Read more...