Daily Archives: May 22, 2013

Diablo III – Now Featuring Hyperinflation

At launch the problem was  Error 37 and other related “always online” issues.

Then it was how the gold auction house was killing the game, something I first brought up in May of last year but which Blizzard, in the form of  Jay Wilson, was still professing amazement about 10 months later.  And then there was the recent auction house burp, which shut it down for several days.

Now, even as Blizzard is patting itself on the back on the one year anniversary of the game, there is an article out there with the title,  A Virtual Weimar: Hyperinflation in a Video Game World, which discusses the impact of the the Diablo III real money auction house on the game over the last year.

Diablo II Shop

And they thought this was bad…

Being compared as a parallel to Weimar German and the great inflation… that is never a good thing.  I think even Greece has only been held up against the Weimar Republic to show that the situation in Greece isn’t as bad as it could be.

And it all seems to fall back to something Edward Castronova said, a while back:

Being an elf doesn’t make you turn off the rational economic calculator part of your brain.

And when real money is part of the mix…

So what else can go wrong, aside from Blizzard having no backup plan and no content expansion ready in the foreseeable future?

Hat tip to Edward Catronova for spotting the story.

CCP Celebrates 10 Years of EVE Online by Reminding Us to Train Long Skills on Patch Day

Whoops, the new launcher than came out today had… issues.

Which I think makes it an official EVE Online feature!

It even got Winterblink to make a Warp Drive Active comic about it.

CCP took their old launcher, which just used to show some news and ads along with checking to see if you game was up to date, and downloading updates if you needed them, and moved the whole login/authentication process into it.

New EVE Launcher

New EVE Launcher

So when it had problems, people couldn’t log in.

And if you could log in, and you had multiple accounts, you might have noticed that using the tab to get to the password field changed which account you selected.  I also saw a message from somebody saying that the new launcher ate their UI settings.  And that it was made from asbestos.

I was able to get in myself, though I came along later.  And others who had problems found that you could still launch from the ExeFile.exe.

All in all, no big deal.  We’ll get a fix soon.  Just another day in Iceland.  It isn’t like they went after the boot.ini file again!

We are never going to let that one go.

But it is a change, and there is one thing I will miss.

I will miss the big splash screen that came up every time you launched the game.  I always felt that was part of the game.

Retribution - The Last Splash Screen

Retribution – The Last Splash Screen

I will also miss the little ads that CCP would pop up on the splash screen, ads that informed us about sales on PLEX, EON subscriptions, new features, DUST 514 beta, Burn Jita, the Alliance tournament, Skyward Sphere, and a bunch of other such things.  Even the old launcher was so announced.  And, of course, they made fun of Diablo III launch issues.

CCP pokes fun at Blizzard

CCP pokes fun at Blizzard

Last year I captured as many as I could and put them together in one picture.  The old launcher ad is in there.

Click to enlarge... 3MB file

Click to enlarge… 3MB file

I have been capturing them again this year, with an eye to creating another such picture.  However, now we appear to be at an end of such ads.  So I suppose I should get to work on putting that together.