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Reader Comments (44)

Posted: May 5th 2009 7:12PM (Unverified) said

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I don't currently play... but when I did, I probably wouldn't have known it was an exploit. I just would've joined a group and gone through the instance like everybody else.

It'd be hard to determine who joined them as a pickup, and who was actually in on the exploit...

Posted: May 5th 2009 7:42PM MrGutts said

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LOL you sound like some of the guild folks in the wow guild were the guy used his gift from the GM to 1 shot everything for over two weeks...
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Posted: May 6th 2009 6:45AM (Unverified) said

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I played a bit in the free weekend and gained about 10 levels doing AE, fairly quickly, now that I look back at it I feel retarded not thinking it was an exploit.
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Posted: May 5th 2009 7:25PM zkey14 said

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Yeah, that's pretty ridiculous. The humongous XP gains from certain mobs were a mistake on the developers' part--putting the players at fault and punishing them will only cost them subscription numbers. It's perplexing how these people operate sometimes.

Posted: May 6th 2009 2:53AM J Brad Hicks said

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"Exploiters are subscribers, why would any company turn down their money?" Ah, yes, one of the identifying cries of the exploiter. I'll tell you why: not banning the exploiters was about to cost them my subscription fee, and a lot of other people's. Sorry, you lose: you are out-voted by the far greater number who'd rather quit the game than share it with you.
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Posted: May 6th 2009 5:20AM starka1 said

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Yeah, I'd like to see that source you are quoting where tons of subscribers were going to leave Brad. It's just like that huge majority of people that threatened to leave over ED that never materialized. Great example of hyperbole. When I said I had problems finding a team on low population servers, people said don't just use broadcast, join an SG or join a global channel. It worked. Same thing applies here as I was watching PinnBadges and Triumph Watch 2.0. Hardly anyone asking for an AE team and most asking for TF teams. Unlike you I still realize that is hardly evidence of the majority but it begs the question has anyone put forth the same effort I was told to do when running into teaming issues. Did you try other sources? Do you belong to an SG? If so, you are telling me they ALL fell prey to the siren call of AE farms?

Don't let the door hit you on the way out. Just as much as cheaters, I hate self-righteous bastards who think they know better than anyone else and decide to burn the village before they understand what they are facing. Let me guess, you have Aspergers.
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Posted: May 5th 2009 7:32PM (Unverified) said

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Why not put some counter on the number of times a player uses the Mission Architect for such missions? And that it can be reset to full at a certain interval? Just a thought.

Posted: May 5th 2009 7:49PM Wraibot said

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zkey14 called it right, subscription canceled. It's just a battle between the CoX devs and the PvP/Farming community. Since there's no worth while endgame content other than PvP... which you need to level up for... gee i wonder what the problem is.

Then they say, we knew there was gonna be an exploit, but decided not to say we knew it was gonna happen and that there would be consequences fore the people who used the exploit, even though people didn't know it was a real exploit.

Real classy Paragon Studios, now everyone hates Posi and Castle... yay.

Posted: May 5th 2009 7:58PM Keen and Graev said

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How could they not have expected this as a possible outcome?

Posted: May 5th 2009 8:46PM (Unverified) said

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QFT. Seriously.

The first thought that went through my mind when I saw the description of the Mission Architect was "You just KNOW people will attempt exploit this for personal gain in the form of farming Experience, Influence and drops. I wonder how they will be preventing that?"
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Posted: May 5th 2009 10:28PM (Unverified) said

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Yep, first thing that popped into my mind as well.

The first thing you consider when introducing any feature is what is the worst way some douchebag can abuse it? Got it covered? Ok, now think of 3 more. Done? NOW you can start implementing the feature.

Though I really would like to see them pull a Darkfall and just perma ban guys exploiting this. The teary-eyed 'but I didn't know...' crap is not a defense. We're all adults, we know what we're doing. Don't exploit the damned game and you don't get banned. Simple.
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Posted: May 5th 2009 8:00PM (Unverified) said

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Ok... personally I think that this was a needed move on the dev's part... the entire game was devolving into "LFG MEOW FARM". And honestly, I think that its very telling that everyone is blaming the devs for all of this... "You should have been holding my hand!" C'mon, when you can gain the first 10 levels in 15 minutes? Right... that's not an abuse. People were leveling characters to 50 in THREE HOURS! Clearly something had to be done... perhaps the only criticism I have of how it was handled was that they might have taken too long to get to this point. The abusive nature of this has been pretty apparent for several weeks. Unless you are brand new to the game, I -really- have a hard time believing you didn't know that these arcs were designed to exploit the leveling process. Take some responsibility for your actions people! Perhaps it wasn't handled ideally, but please, don't try to lump this all at NCSoft's feet...

Posted: May 5th 2009 9:53PM Gaugamela said

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I agree with you. Although they were shortsighted by not seeing this coming people KNEW that they were exploiting the system. I would pull a Darkfall on the people who abused the system (which means permaban with no appeals).
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Posted: May 5th 2009 10:12PM (Unverified) said

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I dont know exactly how this is used to 'exploit', but if theyre just making xp friendly instances for leveling that shouldnt be bannable.

Posted: May 5th 2009 11:01PM (Unverified) said

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When you make a mission using the highest XP/lowest threat mobs available (Rikti comm officers), populate the mission with as many groups of them as possible, surrounding objects that buff the players (captive forcefield npcs) and objects that explode when you shoot them (for more hitpoints than the mobs have), you know you're deliberately expoiting the game.

And when you take an 8-man team, leave 5 people outside the door so you have a mission populated for 8 but XP divided amongst 3, and you debuff the mobs while hitting the explosives and AoEing the stragglers such that you're earning an average of a level every 5 to 15 minutes up to level 50, you are probably also deliberately in on the exploit.

These are the people in question. Not folks who happened to make high reward missions in their arcs, or people who have tagged along on high reward missions. These were farming exploits, cut and dry. I mean, read the thread linked to in the article. It only existed for three weeks, there's already slang terms for all of the stuff going on.
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Posted: May 5th 2009 11:47PM Dblade said

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To be honest though, basic playtesting should have realized most of those and fixed them before general release. If you can make exploding objects for more than an exp-giving mob's HP, exploits are a given.

I'm starting to think MMO's should really be beefing up their playtesting so they can save themselves all this hassle and customer ill will. There's unexpected bugs, but errors in design like this shouldn't reach the finished product.


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Posted: May 5th 2009 11:00PM cray said

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I'm not so sure Paragon Studios could afford to permanently ban the abusers in question. I personally wouldn't mind it as the MMO industry needs to stand united against cheaters.

Posted: May 6th 2009 1:19AM Anatidae said

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One of the first questions is - why care? Seriously, it is CoX. Most of the fun of this game is creating a character. I joined in on random AE teams and some seemed to be farms, other trying out actual attempts at stories. My newbie character I created just to play with AE shot up to level 30 pretty quick (took only a few days).

you know what... then I created another, and another and another. Suddenly this game seemed fun again! I could actually create a hero/villian and level them up into the mid-late 30s in days instead of months. Way more fun. They don't have the same cool enhancements that someone carefully collecting salvage for weeks and weeks would have, but if CoX isn't a game for alt-oholoics, I don't know what is.

That said, some AE missions that I joined in on were stupid easy XP. Too boring. I would prefer that the devs put in better logic to lower the rewards on such missions rather than banning players for building what they deem as the best XP farm.

Come on. It is a game, the point is to level and kill things. Don't you think players are going to create the best possible way to level and kill things if given the tools? Even when NOT given the tools, they still find the best way to kill and level... anyone say Bank Farm?

Posted: May 6th 2009 3:07AM Valkenr said

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It was funny that it took them 2 months to do this, and made the major change the day after all the people had re-subbed after the free activation week. This was known well before the reactivation, I made a trial before the free week and heard nothing other than "join my farm" and they did nothing about it. Maybe a $$ spike before the fall when champions is released? but then why would they get rid of it?

~Falc

Posted: May 6th 2009 5:13AM johnnic1235 said

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Falconer - you make an excellent point on the timing.

Infamous Brad - You state, "It's swing the ban-hammer with enthusiasm, or roll back i14 altogether, or kiss their game goodbye as it acquires a reputation as a cheat-haven over-run by exploits and hacks." But these are not the only choices. Why not simply patch the exploits and prevent the worst of this behavior? Why not adjust merit rewards to make regular teaming more on par in terms of rewards - in other words, re-incentivize regular teaming? A ban hammer under these circumstances is not warranted. This was a poor design choice, and a fixable one,

Oh, and once again, Paragon Studios' closed beta testing fails to reveal potential problems. They need to reinstitute open beta.
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