Bans, Boxers, 3rd party programs, and EQ

Discussion in 'The Veterans' Lounge' started by Cheyana, Apr 4, 2022.

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  1. Cheyana Journeyman

    I appreciate everyone taking the time to weigh in on this issue. Clearly we're going to have to agree to disagree, unfortunately there are those (as referenced in the above quote) who can't "let it go." The irony is that the MMO world is comprised to a large extent of people who were, in varying terms relevant to whatever age group one is in, geeks, nerds, freaks, dweebs, dorks and others, people who were chronically bullied throughout their lives. Yet if you go to any game public chat, or gaming forum, these same people are some of the biggest bullies I've ever encountered.

    Just sayin'...

    And as I've said repeatedly, much as some wish to deny it, boxers are what keeps EQ alive and automation is what makes boxing possible. If you're honest with yourselves and take a clear eyed look around PoK or the guild lobby, or your own guilds and start doing the math you'll see what so many here have been trying to tell you. There are a lot of box accounts out there who provide a very significant revenue stream to EQ to pay operations costs, devs, R&D, PR, etc to keep the game going.

    For every boxer who leaves EQ has to recruit anywhere from 3 (a smaller box crew) to 24 or more (the mega boxers) accounts to back fill. I've worked in retail management long enough in my lifetime to say with some certainty, that those kinds of numbers are significant. Experience in the field tells us that for every dissatisfied customer who makes themselves know there are 24 who won't say anything, and just quietly leave. Moreover, for every dissatisfied customer who leaves, the negative word of mouth anti-advertising impacts anywhere from 8-20 people (including potential AND existing customers).

    Using a 6 box crew (which is low) as an average boxer, for every boxer who says they're leaving 144 other accounts are quietly cancelled. Expanded world wide that adds up to real money.
  2. Cheyana Journeyman

    I love the /snip /snip There's nothing like removing context of a message to make a point.

    For those who object to the anti-boxing crowd being labeled toxic, tell me, how distortion of a message, and condescending back handed insults is not, in fact, toxic?
  3. Szilent Augur

    It's an interesting juxtaposition, specifically because it doesn't apply here. A "dissatisfied customer" as you euphamize , saying to the larger gaming community "Gamecompany banned me for cheating" doesn't lead gamers to think that's a bad game company. Quite the opposite, such a "negative review" describes a publisher that cares about the health of their game and the integrity of game play. If potential…infestations of those interested in abusing lax enforcement are dissuaded from trying EverQuest by such reviews? That's not the same as losing potential customers in the vein of fellow players for you & I.
    Raccoo and Vumad like this.
  4. Prepared Lorekeeper

    WHOA! Where the >>>>> did you get this disinformation from? AUTOMATION has NOTHING to do with boxing! Automation is what bots use!

    Please do searches online to find relevant information regarding multiboxing. If you believe that automation is involved with multiboxing then you are severely disinformed.
  5. Zilkress Journeyman

    except they havent done anything to treat the root cause of the symptom that is botting. that is not carring for the health and well being.
    Cheyana likes this.
  6. Khat_Nip Meow

    Because I wanted to put the emphasis on one particular and distinct thing you said rather than quote a wall of text. By doing that I wasn't taking anything out of context.
    You said, "Were they "cheating"? Yes, but they weren't breaking the game or hurting anyone in any way."
    I had quoted, "Were they "cheating"? Yes"
    The entire context was based around whether they were cheating or not; your attempt to justify why or downplay it is irrelevant.
    Raccoo likes this.
  7. Vumad Cape Wearer

    I can get on board with you on many points, but there is no reason for anyone to have 24 accounts. No one is "mega-boxing" 24 toons in any legitimate fashion. There is a small step from boxing to having a bot do what a merc can do. There is a giant leap from that to having 24 characters running fully automated with basically no user input. There can't be any user input at that point. Grouping people who 3 or 6 box, with or without help, with people who are running 24 accounts, is the real issue of toxicity towards boxers or botters. I hope someday DPG adds some level of 1st party bot assistance to boxing, but DPG will never care about losing 24 accounts from 1 person because there is nothing about having 24 accounts that falls within the spirit of this game.

    And that's the thing about this...

    "Experience in the field tells us that for every dissatisfied customer who makes themselves know there are 24 who won't say anything, and just quietly leave. Moreover, for every dissatisfied customer who leaves, the negative word of mouth anti-advertising impacts anywhere from 8-20 people (including potential AND existing customers)."

    DPG knows how many people those mega boxers costs. Their net impact is surely less than their net contribution. This is the botter fallacy. They over estimate their value. Their contributions do not offset the accounts lost due to their presence.
  8. Primadonna Knights of Infinity, FV

    I love all of the posts you've put out so far. They have articulated a lot of the feelings that other folks have been trying to get across, but may have not had the skill to express their thoughts as well as you have. So thank you for your time in putting that together!

    I'm an officer in a larger guild, on one of the larger servers, and I have to agree with you about the quality and nature of the boxers/botters I've seen over the last 3 years of running the guild. We've had to deal with some individuals (usually in the early 20's crowd) who were abusing the system and training folks or harassing others, but that's been by and large a small subset and about standard for any game with social interaction. The majority of our botting crowd have always been around to help others make groups when there weren't a lot of folks on or there weren't enough of an essential class to make the group work (priests, slowers, tanks, etc).

    With the latest rounds of suspensions over the course of 3 months, most of those botting crews have gone away and with it, there's a lot less folks on to group and raid with on a weekly basis. And it's not because of the suspensions, but because of the low morale created by DPG who struck at the heart of the community. We still fill out our raids and have a bench of folks even, but it just doesn't feel the same to everyone anymore. There's a big fear that the game is going under because of the loss of revenue, and so there's little incentive to keep playing when it might all go away in the next year.

    Personally, I've done what I can to try and keep everything positive and rally the folks, but in all honestly, I don't feel supported by the owners of the game. I say that specifically because I believe the Devs love it and are pushing for improvements, but their managers and the higher level executives making strategic decisions regarding the game are on a path of self destruction and are either unaware of the number of botters or only looking at these forums with the loudest voices. Heck, even the new community council isn't going to listen to the enthusiast botter community. But management and everyone else will know whether managements strategy is effective by the start of Q1 2023 when those yearly subscriptions expire and there aren't as many new expac purchases.

    For better or worse, EQ is essentially an idle game at best now at days with a few hours each week for raids and grouping of missions. Changing the terms of service in regards to what they consider cheating is the only way forward, and even then, it might be too late considering how badly this whole suspension wave was handled. There are just too many folks that have been burned too many times, and there are plenty of other games with satisfying content to continue to fight what seems like a losing battle here. Trying to cater to the "Purists" is a losing strategy since those types of folks have 38 different visions of what a pure EQ looks like and it will never be enough as they will always need something to cry and hate about.

    But I thank you again for trying to put together something that might reach the ears of DPG management and I hope they take it into account for what it's worth. Heck, maybe you can get a gig as a new community manager! ;)
  9. Primadonna Knights of Infinity, FV

    You're making a lot of assumptions, like the rest of us, about how many boxers are out there and their impact on the game. It just seems silly that they would risk losing ANY revenue at this point considering that they don't have a clear path to increasing it yet.
    Bardy McFly and Imforfreedom like this.
  10. HowDidIEndUpBackHere Elder

    While I do understand the low morale by losing a chunk of your perceived community (the guild's roster), those numbers were inflated to an extent.

    The fear that the game is going under due to revenue is something us, the players, shouldn't worry about. The company, and the investors, have people who are paid money to do financial assessments with data that we, the players, do not have.

    Also, your guild should be thrilled that they can fill a raid and still bench people.
  11. Creative Sparks Quiet One

    Lawyers felt the need to "go deeper into detail" and removed it to start from scratch.
  12. Creative Sparks Quiet One

    whelp the things is I wouldn't have known about those boxers (only 2 are friends) IF i hadnt said LFG in the zone to hope for a group. so there are alot of good people who box so not all boxers gonna turn people down.
    Imforfreedom likes this.
  13. Cicelee Augur

    I wonder if DBG employees read threads like these and just chuckle out loud...

    You cheated. You got caught. End of story.

    This is about as black and white as can be. Once you start to introduce gray, you get people who want to push the gray into darker and lighter, see what they can and cannot get away with.

    There is no gray. Black and white. You cheat, you risk getting suspended or banned. Period.
    Raccoo, Lubianx, Sancus and 2 others like this.
  14. Prepared Lorekeeper

    People cannot box with automation and those that do will be suspended and/or banned. It's never been allowed with Everquest and no major MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game) has ever allowed automation.

    Broadcasting keys (also known as key replication or key mirroring) is allowed on Standard servers. See this post for clarification that has not changed since posted:

    Actually it doesn't say anything about standard servers, so I'm not sure if broadcasting is allowed on any Time Locked Progression servers or not.
    Raccoo likes this.
  15. Sythrak20 Elder

    That's fine and all but on Rizlona they deliberately enabled third party programs to be used at the beginning of the server. In fact, they were originally disabled and then enabled at the request of the players. So there was no misconception that they were unofficially allowing it. Do I think they were allowing automating/warping etc? No, but they were allowing the programs to be used within reason with things like assisting/broadcasting.

    I think in particular what we want on Rizlona is to just tell us straight up they made a mistake and will ban at their leisure so we can stop playing with a cloud over our heads wondering when they'll indiscriminately target us like they did this week.
    Bardy McFly and Cheyana like this.
  16. Cheyana Journeyman

    I've noticed that the people subscribing to the demonization, generalizations, name calling, and misinformation school of thought tend to focus on belittling anyone wanting to engage in reasoned discussion about how to address the issue of game viability and ethical use of automation and labeling them as "cheaters" or "pro-cheaters." This penchant for demonization of those who don't agree and their desire to attach loaded, derogatory appellations to those folks makes me wonder if their near religious ecstasy and zeal for the retro-purism of 1999 is premised more on nostalgia rather than any genuine desire to do what is right for the long term viability of the game.

    We're not talking about SEQ and the more pernicious programs of the past. While current programs can be abused, they can also be used in benign ways that don't break the game and don't go beyond acceptable game mechanics. I have yet to see anyone posting here say that the things complained about like AFK farming or interfering with other players is in any way acceptable.

    I've also noticed that there are only a small handful of people who are really weighing in with the "cheater" attitude with a religious fervor. They post A LOT, and try to drown out, or outright silence, other voices, but a lot of people here and in game realize that compromise is needed. Lines need to be drawn regarding real cheating and those people who engage in game breaking hacks, AFK farming, and other toxic behaviors should be suspended or banned. But automation that enhances the game without going over those lines needs to be considered on merit rather than a knee jerk one size fits all, black or white standard.

    Finally, for the person who suggested that boxers don't pay for all their accounts, that is inaccurate. All accounts are paid for either through direct subs or Kronos, either way EQ gets revenue for every account.

    And with that I'm out. I have spoken out for my friends who are boxers and who use automation responsibly to enhance the game for themselves and others. The suspensions of those folks without regard to actual actions and in light of past EQ staff indicating that such use is ok, is an injustice and just bad business.

    I appreciate the people who have constructively added to this conversation either pro or con and thank them for their input. Those who can present a rational, well-articulated case supporting their position and disagree without being disagreeable provide a valuable service in encouraging discussion and provoking necessary thought on the issues.

    I also thank those people who have offered comments directly supportive of my efforts.

    However, I would rather spend my time playing the game than arguing with toxic forum trolls who enjoy the name calling and bullying of any who don't agree with them and seek to silence dissent through any means possible. Nothing is served by that.

    Peace to all.
    Bardy McFly likes this.
  17. Benito EQ player since 2001.

    Condemns ad hominem then proceeds to use ad hominem (albeit in a passive-aggressive tone).

    If someone's actions violates the rules officially stated here then don't do it:

    What Constitutes as Cheating?
    Raccoo likes this.
  18. Cheyana Journeyman

    I just wanted to make you more comfortable by responding in kind. I tried being nice, but sometimes nice just doesn't get through to some folks.
    Bardy McFly likes this.
  19. Xyroff-cazic. Director of Sarcasm

    You were sort of making some decent points, but this is where you really lost my confidence. There's plenty of very capable boxers not using automation to cheat. If a player can't box without cheating, they should play less boxes. Boxing an entire automated group is not a requirement to play the game successfully.
  20. Prepared Lorekeeper

    I respectfully disagree. All forms of automation should not be allowed regardless of whether some feel a player is nice or not. It's been this way since day 1 and shouldn't change.

    Would you please provide a source for where past EQ staff indicated automation is ok? I've not ever heard of any gaming company staff in 23 years of playing MMORPGs (massively multiplayer online role playing games) ever state that automation was ok.
    Raccoo likes this.
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