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Unpaid accounts should not be able to own certain items

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Sarphus, Aug 5, 2008.

  1. Sarphus

    Sarphus Guest

    I was thinking a little bit about how to reduce duper's ability to operate at no cost and get away with murder.

    As I understand it, a lot of dupers use credit card fraud and trial accounts to do their dirty deeds. My solution? Make it so an account can only own certain items if it has been paid for legitimately. In other words, until EA has received a payment that cleared on an account, the account can not have certain items.

    The items on the list would basically be anything a duper would want to dupe.
    Ornies, Inquis, runic tools over a certain level, etc.

    Accounts in "unpaid status" would have the following qualities:
    * can not pick up items on the ban list (like they're locked down)
    * can not trade for items on the ban list
    * if account already owns items on the ban list, they are placed in invisible temporary storage until the account is in paid status
    * can not operate a vendor
    * can not carry more than a certain amount of gold. If gold owned is already in excess of that value, it is placed in temporary storage until the account enters paid status. Offloading gold does not gain the account access to the gold in temporary storage. Only a cleared payment to EA does.

    Is this a working solution to the abuse we're dealing with?

    Do you see flaws in this plan?

    Can you think of other ways to restrict dupers?

    Please give descriptive feedback. We certainly need to come up with a good solution to the problem, cause banning buyers is certainly upsetting people.

    One possible benefit of this strategy is that it forces the dupers to somehow link their financial information to the accounts they are using to abuse the game. I think this will make it harder for them to hide when EA comes looking for who's making all the trouble.
  2. Redxpanda

    Redxpanda Lore Keeper
    Stratics Veteran

    Dec 6, 2007
    Likes Received:
    The whole point of trial accounts is so a new player can try out the game risk free but people are taking advantage of it in a big way. I always believed trial accounts should be very limited:

    No Trading
    No House Ownership
    No Event Participating

    Trial accounts should be able to work skills in a limited area and get a general feel for the game. I can't even begin to understand why they haven't done something about this yet. Perhaps they like to make it look like they have more subscribers.
  3. Radun

    Radun Guest

    it wouldn't stop people from starting dummy accounts.. all this would do is give a poor first impression of the game to genuine newcomers, and force exploiters to pay for their throw-away accounts while they cheat using them.
  4. Sarphus

    Sarphus Guest

    Well no trading doesn't prevent them from drop-transfering items. That's why I thought putting a restriction on the items that are most commonly duped would make it a lot harder to run a duping operation in UO and get away with it.

    If an item can be accessed by an unpaid account, the item can also be duped without risk of punishment.

    I agree with your general thoughts about restrictions on trial accounts as well.

    I just thought of a possible work around and a solution for it. Players intending to dupe could enter billing info, log on, and clear billing info. For this reason, billing info should be cashed but not displayed on the billing info form until it has been changed. This allows people to still sell accounts without dupers being able to detatch their billing info from the account they're about to dupe with.
  5. Sarphus

    Sarphus Guest

    It's not intended to stop people from using dummy accounts to dupe. It's intended to tie people's billing record to the actions they perform in game. It's intended to make dupers trackable.
  6. Basara

    Basara UO Forum Moderator
    Moderator Professional Wiki Moderator Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend Campaign Supporter

    Jul 16, 2003
    Likes Received:
    When an account is inactive, what can co-owners and friends do to containers they have access to for that account's house? If they can access (add/remove items), perhaps making those containers static (no access by anyone) until account is paid-active (or return to Brit week), or the house drops. After all, if a house is sitting with no billing info, is it being checked for violations?
  7. Radun

    Radun Guest

    ya, but it still fails to do that.
  8. Wenchkin

    Wenchkin Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Alumni

    May 16, 2008
    Likes Received:
    I think the best solution is restricting all trial accounts to New Haven. By all means give them a newbie BOD system with different rewards and a proper dungeon etc. But no ability to trade with vets or leave the island until they pay their sub. Place a limit on the resources they can own too.

    After 15 days, the 30 day trial account holder can opt to leave New Haven, but they must pay their sub in advance to do so. They'd still get their remaining free days, but that payment would be required on leaving Haven.

    One option to allow newbies to try out house ownership, would be to include either a tutorial house, where a newbie could find out about customised housing and how to manage a house. Or, allow rental of a room in the inn etc, where a player could have a tiny temporary residence while they lived on New Haven. They wouldn't be able to leave the island without emptying their inn and "handing back the keys". Rooms would be available to rent on the main lands too - one per account with say 50 slots of storage with limited weight per slot. Something like that. If only just to give some purpose to Inns which aren't really used as much nowadays.

  9. Beldon

    Beldon Guest

    Hmm, I would do it just for that. Why give them a free ride while they destroy the game?
  10. Der Rock

    Der Rock Guest

    and dont forget:

    trial accounts should not be alouwd to leave haven, and after the 14 days trial, only player who remove the "young" status should be alowed to leave haven.
    the last 25k point event was a farce.
    the cleaning items are worthless now.
    after all these mistakes during events, the DEV´s didnt learn
  11. RoycroftLS

    RoycroftLS Guest

    While I agree that it's a good idea, it assumes that a duper can't profit more than a month's worth of subscription fees on a single account. Or if they are using a stolen credit card number or some other nonsense, it will still clear and they can easily get their dirty deeds done in the day or so before the fraud is realized.

    If you combined a legitimately paid account with a 15 or 30 day timer before a character can get such high-level privileges, then it would seem more likely to succeed. And it's not without precedent, since previous holiday gifts have required a minimum character age to obtain.
  12. Sam the Scribe

    Sam the Scribe Visitor

    Mar 10, 2007
    Likes Received:
    The last event was fun. Finally an event where you don't have to have an uber char to participate and get some rewards. As for the cleaning items being "worthless"... The resale value of an item shouldn't be the first consideration on participating in an event. This is a game. It's all pixels and basically... ALL of the items are worthless.

    What would you do if you had a trial version of UO and found you couldn't go anywhere or do anything? Would you even bother getting a paid account after playing a "crippleware" trial version?

    Safe Travels, Sam
  13. Lady_Mina

    Lady_Mina Guest

    those trail account should be seriously restricted.

    Like back in my days...i was stuck in Haven till i reached a certain skill...and then i was allowed to leave.

    First of all...EA should ring the alarm as soon as a 15 day trail account owns an object that costs MILLIONS..

    They're too busy banning traders and buyers...that they forget that all the duping happens on trail accounts.
  14. Trial accounts and [young] players should be limited to New Haven period. Everything they need to raise their skills is there. They shouldn't be allowed to leave the island until they have 250 skill points in at least 5 skills, that way anyone that created a new character would have to spend time working at least 5 skills up to 50 from the 40 that can be purchased. Any player that has an existing account with characters with any skill over 40, or time on the account more than 60 days, should be limited to the immediate moongate area so if someone wanted to drop things off for new players they could go through the moongate, drop the items on the other side, then leave again. No trades should be allowed to any character on a trial account or with [young] status.

    I'm sure there's a few holes in there, but I think you get the gist of it.
  15. BartofCats

    BartofCats Guest

    while i do agree with you Conner... i would also have to agree that there should be a much and far better tutorial on new haven for all the young players.

    This would include:
    -the missing tutorial for banking and bank checks
    -a little help guide for the young player tickets (with correction in the description on how to use it)
    -a proper system of ALL skill npc's to help out and assist with the skills include the missing ones now such as taming etc.

    -young players should not be able to relenquish thier young status either.
    -young status should last on all new chars. for 40 hours and 15 days only on the new accounts. *note same rule applies for the 450 skill points now they loose young status but not on all chars on the account just that one.
    -only when young status is lost, THEN would the rest of the game be open to them IE moongate/trades etc.
    -BoDs-unavable till young status wears off not even an option on the NPC
    -a new player only dungeon should still be under new haven for the youngins to go skill and train in. Nothing fancy, perhaps some mongbats and greater mongbats
    -young players not able to be guilded.

    Most of this stuff that i have mentioned has come from my experience in the past 2 months of "training" a youngin in our guild. Most of what i have just posted is what has been asked by him of us.

    Yes its a hard stance on the players but it almost seems like it should have been that way from day one.
  16. Strawberry

    Strawberry Guest

    If the current ban on young players going to dungeons is extended to any area in which a Melissa-type quest monster spawns, that should be sufficient as far as area restrictions. We don't need to confine them to Haven.

    If someone wants to go to the trouble of gm'ing tailoring/smithing on a new character every 14 days, why shouldn't they have the BODs from it?

    The account age restriction has already been implemented; anyone who owns a house has paid for their account, even if they're still young.

    As for the rest, there is another option. They could just fix the dupe bug(s).
  17. Confining them to New Haven keeps the abusers from utilizing the system for scripting/duping purposes, and also keeps them from abusing event game mechanics.

    How do you think the BRSK & Runic Hammer's came about in such quantities? They used trial accounts with .1 Tailoring/Smithing to collect Bods once an hour with multiple accounts on every shard, and did so with a script.

    That only solved one scripter issue. It doesn't do anything for any of the other scripting problems.

    They can fix one, then with the next publish, have another pop up. The problem with writing coding for games is that you have a large group of humans all contributing parts of the end result, with every one of those humans subject to human error. That's a lot of loopholes that could possibly pop up. Even the best QA can have things slip through, as they're human as well, and subject to the same human error.
  18. Strawberry

    Strawberry Guest

    Some of us like the flexibility of being able to easily get a skill up to 50 in Haven. I think it should be possible to get all skills to 50 in Haven. It brings a nice mix of veteran players to the town on occasion to train our own new characters. I recently made another lumberjack and was happy to be able to get her to 50 tinkering quickly and to help two newbies figure out their newbie tickets (which are apparently really screwed up now. They couldn't use a trade window for it. I had to lead them to a quiet area of town and ask one to drop her ticket on the ground for the other to click on).
  19. Strawberry

    Strawberry Guest

    If older accounts can still drop stuff off, they can still dupe stuff. If gold can be made in Haven, gold-collecting can be scripted. I heard a good suggestion somewhere that every few hours a picture-matching question (easy to answer by a person, impossible for a script) should pop up and any character that can't answer it is automatically logged out as away from computer.

    Characters with .1 get cruddy bods, nothing that leads to runics. I don't know what BRSK means.

    Then fix that one too. Maybe hire back those QA testers they fired several years ago.
  20. Fink

    Fink Guest

    Barbed Runic Sewing Kit
  21. Do you really think a scripter is going to bother with a temp character that can only get 40gp per kill? It's not even worth their time to run the script. If trial accounts are limited strictly to New Haven, and unable to collect Bods period, then one of the biggest scripter/duper tools is removed completely. Add [young] characters to that list of characters that can't leave New Haven, and a tool for exploiters is removed too.

    The suggestion of the pop up question sounds like a very bad idea. I'd hate to be in the middle of a fight with oh say...a Para Balron, and have some damn gump pop up that ends up getting me killed.

    Any Bod can lead to a runic when filled and turned in by a Legendary crafter.

    BRSK= Barbed Runic Sewing Kit

    They still have QA, and it doesn't matter who they bring back. Human error will always be present in computer code because it's written by humans. It will also get through QA because they're human also.
  22. Strawberry

    Strawberry Guest

    I was thinking of the escort quests. Anyway, if youngs are kept out of dungeons (and the definition of dungeons should be expanded to obvious dungeon-like areas), that would take care of the problem without confining them to Haven. This whole thread arose because youngs could kill Melissa, which should have been a dungeon area. What other spots are youngs exploiting? Those should be made dungeons too.

    The gump could wait until the character isn't taking heavy damage.

    My legendary crafter always gets what the http://www.towerofroses.de/bodt-aos.htm predicts.

    I'm glad that you agree with me about that. So you must also agree that EA should have held off on tearing down houses until banned players had a chance to defend themselves, in case EA had made a human error and banned some innocent people. Please come to http://vboards.stratics.com/showthread.php?t=94155 and explain about EA's possible errors there too, because posters there believe EA is infallible.
  23. Magincia was a prime example of an area being exploited by [young] characters. People would kill an event item dropping creature, then before they could kill everything else around to have time to loot, the [young] players would walk through the middle of everything in safety and take the item. They were also looting the gold from everything that was killed with no risk to themselves. They easily made millions from doing nothing.

    That would still be a pain in the butt when you're playing the game.

    A bod runner with .1 in Tailoring or Smithing can collect a junk Bod every 60 minutes. This can then in turn be filled by a Legendary crafter and turned in to receive a "good" bod, which when done in bulk, leads to runics.
  24. Strawberry

    Strawberry Guest

    Youngs weren't allowed on Magincia after the first few days. Monsters that drop event items are or should be in dungeon areas. If the problem is that there's a lot of spawn to kill before looting a particular monster and it's hard to get back to its corpse before it goes public, wouldn't stealthers and random other players be the real issue? If that's the case, you can always push for longer corpse sectioning. As for gold, I've noticed people leaving piles of gold around because they'd rather keep items than an equivalent weight of gold.

    As for BODs, remember, they have to get the leather or metal to fill that junk bod before turning it in. That's a lot of trouble to go to just to get some extra bods. It sounds to me like those afterschool specials, where cheating took just as much time as doing it the right way. If they want to put that much time and effort into it, let them.
  25. Tjalle

    Tjalle Grand Inquisitor
    Professional Stratics Veteran Campaign Supporter Gilfane

    May 12, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Make it so that trial accounts only can log in on Test Center. There they can try anything without messing up the game...
  26. azmodanb

    azmodanb Grand Poobah
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Jun 3, 2004
    Likes Received:
    I like the idea personally,

    Make trail accounts limited, why not alot of other games do just that.

    In WoW your new account is not able to trade for example. (not that UO is wow) and also I think only able to only train to a specific level.

    Just an example of how some other games are doing it.

    New players would pretty much not notice anything, most new players would only get half way trained up, and not care about there artis anyway, most new players unless helped by a friend that is established would still be working on getting loot from dragons to make there first suit. If they had a friend in game trying to give them high end artis as a gift, he would be able to tell him here, you can have this once you pay for your account.

    Paying for the account with a valid CC (unless stolen) .. would make it possible for EA to tell who this person is... and ban the CC or IP of that person if they were caught duping.

    I think personally it's a great idea. It would not hurt the new player in the slightest, and most players of any game understand a trail account is just that... "trial" ....

    and of course if the new player had to play with those items he could not in the normal game there is always test center that a trail account would have full access too.
  27. They're scripters. They have script miners out getting the ores while their script Bod runners get the Bods. Then they have a script set up to fill the Bods. They don't actually spend any of their own time doing anything.
  28. Eslake

    Eslake Guest

    I suggested something similar before, but people didn't like the idea for some reason.

    Set up a Small partial shard for trial accounts.
    To keep operating costs at a minimum, it would only host the Trammel facet (no Fel, Tokuno, Malas, or Ilshenar).

    Once the account was paid, the user could chose to "Transfer" to a production shard (or stay I guess).

    The transfer is only the name - apearance - and skills. (and maybe a shirt and pants for modesty) No items pets or coins go with them.

    That way a new user could fully experience the game's basics, build skills, and eventually take what they learned (skills/attributes gained) with them to a real shard.
    But trial accounts could not be used for storing duped goods, scripting resources, duping, or holding houses without paying.
  29. Strawberry

    Strawberry Guest

    I don't fully agree with that idea, but a nice aspect of it is that we might get a Trammel Ocllo :love:

    Still, the Haven quests can be useful for older players who want to get 50 in a skill on a new character or to change an old character without as much tedious lower-level training. Haven quests should be available for every skill, even if the [youngs] themselves are gone.
  30. Sarphus

    Sarphus Guest

    Actually, this thread arose as a possible way to make it harder for cheaters to hide, so "innocents" don't get banned.

    Ultimately, I'd like to see dupers get banned before they get to tempt too many players with their ridiculous pricing and dangled carrots.
  31. Strawberry

    Strawberry Guest

    True :blushing:

    All very good ideas, except the invisible storage which might be buggy. How much gold would you allow a young to collect? I'd set it at the price of a 7x7 plot. An exception might be to allow a young to loot a kill if s/he'd done 100% of the damage, even if it put him/her over the limit. Also, to still sell to an npc tailor, carpenter, cook, or smith.
  32. Sarphus

    Sarphus Guest

    Well if they are just disallowed from making checks or make checks over a certain threshold I think it would solve gold-related problems.
  33. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
    Professional Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend Campaign Supporter

    Mar 3, 2006
    Likes Received:
    I'll repost here what I posted in a related thread.

    There is a whole list of things you should not be able to do on a trial account. Coloured, or special leather bods should be one of them. Basically the only thing you should be able to do with a trial account is wander around Trammel (including Trammel T2A), Malas, Tokuno and Ilshenar, and visit the Trammel anti-virtue dungeons.

    You should not be able to enter a peerless instance, or any of the peerless areas, participate in special event content such as the past event, enter Felucca or Heartwood, place a house (not sure if you can do this on a trial account or not - I'm assuming no), or hand in any coloured bod of any sort. You should not be able to wear or use any artifact item. This would still leave tons of content that trial accounts would be able to access, and would destroy 99% of the trial account abuses.