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Reader Comments (29)

Posted: Oct 1st 2009 6:11PM (Unverified) said

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Such a simple fix, I wish other games would adopt this policy. Most friends are using Ventrilo to communicate anyways.

Posted: Oct 1st 2009 6:16PM TheJackman said

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Real smart move like ban this guys is a pain like they may just spam/hack someones account! The best way to really get rid of most of that gold spammers I do IP checks on them and block all IP of country's that have no business play on the US servers.... Also IPs that do not ID them self need be block!

Posted: Oct 1st 2009 8:09PM (Unverified) said

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Smart hackers can bypass IP blocking via proxies so this just hurts legimate players from other countries. Not all gold sellers are that technically savvy but, if they were being blocked, real world money can *buy* the expertise.
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 6:24PM (Unverified) said

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Nice of them to do the bare minimum possible. Unfortunately, the spambots are already over level 5 and flooding all the chat channels, so this change will have absolutely no effect on the amount or annoyance of the advertisers. Hopefully just the first step in getting rid of them though.

Posted: Oct 1st 2009 6:28PM RogueJedi86 said

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Maybe Aion should do what that one MMO did a few months back. Let players buy an item they can use on other players that forces the target to input a CAPTCHA sequence. If they don't enter the CAPTCHA in a certain amount of time, they're kicked out of the game for 30 minutes. Then all you gotta do is get a few players who're annoyed by bots to go stand around the place where the bots start, and start using the items to filter out the bots from the real players. Hard to spam when you're locked out of the game for 30 minutes.

Posted: Oct 1st 2009 7:59PM (Unverified) said

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That would be an awesome exploit for use during PvP. Imagine a fortress defense: All of the attackers select a defender they can see and hit them with this device then, while they are trying to figure out the puzzle, hit them hard while an annoying, possibly modal, window blocks their view/controls.

To make it work in Aion the device could only be used against character of the *same* faction since you can just kill bots of an enemy faction.
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 8:07PM RogueJedi86 said

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Well making it not work on hostile players seemed obvious. The worlds of Light and Dark are separated out so neither side can visit the other's newbie area anyways, right?
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 10:26PM Ivasen said

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What game was this in?
It was little "bombs" they could buy right?

Anyway, you are not able to AutoHuntingReport the opposite Race/Faction in Aion.
So I don't think that will be an issue.
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 11:02PM wjowski said

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Sounds like an awesome griefing tool. Wait 'til someone's in combat then stick a goddamn window in his face.
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 11:42PM Dblade said

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Y's online and Mabinogi both use these. In Mabinogi it's useless because it cant stop the spammers, who just stay in town and spam the say channel, where the bombs wont work.

The best thing to do is very simple. Advertise jobs paying roughly $10 per hour to go and manually ban each gold spammer. Any form of automation can and will be defeated, so the best thing is to use human intelligence to repeatedly ban each whispering main account over and over till the RMT get sick of it and leave.
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 6:34PM (Unverified) said

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I've finally put some time into Aion, and the gold-seller spam is insane. I don't think I've ever played a game that had more, and Aion's only been out for a few days.

I personally think their GMs need to react more quickly to these spammers... I saw the same guy spamming after 3 hours of playing.

Posted: Oct 1st 2009 7:12PM aurickle said

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Just so you know, when you log into the game you can type /anon to make yourself invisible to searches for that session. This immediately shuts the spammers up. You do have to redo this every time you log back in, but it sure makes life nicer!

Posted: Oct 1st 2009 8:09PM (Unverified) said

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I do this immediately when I log in and it works! Sometimes they are incredibly fast and get me anyway -- once.

I wonder if they can also scan the chat channels collecting the names of anyone who transmits. This would find you even if you are /anon. Scary.

Aion needs to support a /report "spammer" + /block option when you click on the name of the person that just sent you a /whisper or in a chat channel. Blocking requires you enter the name *exactly* or it does not work which is why most spammers have really long unintelligible names. Somehow they figured out how to embed mutliple capital letters in their names too which makes discriminating between a lowercase "L" and uppercase "I" impossible.
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 10:33PM Ivasen said

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I believe they do go down into a Name record, much like telemarketing does.

Another thing is if you pay attention to what they type, sometimes it will be the same bot with different website names but with the exact same comment.

Most of them are keylogging sites, I've almost never encountered a legit goldselling site through spam. (I use to collect website names and web page intents for a misc. game company.)
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 7:32PM Vitamin Dei said

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Y'know, I've taken an Elyos Chanter to 16 so far (Lumiel) and haven't gotten a single spam message from gold/kinah sellers. Not one. How weird is that?

Posted: Oct 2nd 2009 2:42AM Dranaerys said

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You must be one of the lucky few then, I get one about every 5-10 mins.
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 8:19PM wjowski said

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Simple solution. Add an 'Only accept whispers from friends/guildmates' option.

Posted: Oct 1st 2009 10:59PM (Unverified) said

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Yes it is a simple solution. And like all simple solutions with this problem, it won't work. Sure, it can stop you from getting whispers, but at the expense of missing ones from random people you might want a whisper from, like someone about to go after a quest mob you're both looking at. And this can be done already in game by using /anon or just taking whisper messages off your main chat window.

This also doesn't address the bigger problems of the constant chat channel spam. With so many companies advertising their 'services' and phishing attempts the chat channels (at least on Lumiel and Zikel) are a non-stop scroll of garbage, to the point where you need to turn off all channels if you want any peace. And that doesn't take into account the actual bots themselves killing mobs and farming nodes, taking them from legitimate players.

I'm sure they are hitting Aion so hard because it's new, popular in Korean, has a big pre-order crowd in the US/EU and is pathetically undefended against them right now. So they're hoping to get as much business as they can. It is flat out though the worst I have ever seen in any game, and it certainly makes playing Aion unpleasant right now, to the point where I almost don't want to log in anymore. I am now wishing I hadn't bought the game right away and instead waited a few months. Hopefully by then they will have got a handle on the situation... if they have any players left that aren't bots.
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Posted: Oct 1st 2009 8:32PM (Unverified) said

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It seems bizarre that in this day and age, a company would find themselves post launch thinking, "oh, gold spammers, damn, I guess we better think about what we can do to deal with that." Seriously, did they not expect this?

Posted: Oct 2nd 2009 11:12AM Cendres said

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No they knew, the community told them over and over my guess is it's a lack of direct control from NCwest who had to go through Korea first. OR it's a presence of naivete...

What I do know is NCWest promised us stable and reliable service unlike what they had with L2 and I really want them to deliver but so far this is not the best impression.... :/
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