Here We Go Again: 600bn ISK Stolen In EVE Heist

EVE Online screenshot

Gather round, spacelings: it’s time for another EVE Online story that simultaneously leaves us wishing we played the game and comforted that we don’t.

(If you already play EVE I’m not looking to exclude you… I’m just fairly confident you’ll already be aware of this torrid tale.)

Evenews24.com ran a story earlier this week that a former member of the Vanguard Frontiers (VAF) corporation was the victim of a theft to the tune of around 600 billion ISK. When that sum is priced against the going rate for PLEX – an in-game item that represents 30 days of game time – it works out at about $13,000.

A player under the name Non Erata joined Vanguard Frontiers soon after beginning to play EVE, eager to improve his position and wealth within the game. Unfortunately for VAF, Non Erata had also recently read a Cracked.com article titled Top Seven Dick Moves in Online Gaming, which inspired him to plan his own corporate heist.

To that end he spent six months slowly gaining the trust and friendship of senior figures within VAF, leading and training teams of rookies and later setting up a new area of wormhole operations within the corporation. On the back of the latter he secured a position as a corporate director. This left him in a prime position to execute his plan, using the Non Erata character and five other alts to asset strip the corporation while its leadership was offline.

Evenews24 interviewed the current CEO of Vanguard Frontiers, ladygrey, and an ex-CEO, Tessa Yor. Both seemed understandably disappointed and betrayed by Non Erata’s actions, and called for consequences within the game for players like Non Erata. They stressed that not only had he stolen corporate assets, he had stolen assets from a large number of players, and that while the corporation would soldier on a lot of players had been hit hard. It seems unlikely that consequences for heists of this nature will be introduced to EVE, or significant safeguards against them, as the freedom to both co-operate as groups and betray as individuals is a large part of EVE’s enduring appeal. Still, one never knows.

600 billion ISK or $13,000 isn’t the biggest theft in EVE history. All the way back in 2005 the Guiding Hand Social Club executed an assassination and looted around $16,500 in ISK and original blueprints, and when the Mittani and Goonfleet presided over the destruction of Band of Brothers in 2009 a defector reportedly transferred trillions to the Goons. There was also a Ponzi scheme in which a few players walked away with over a trillion ISK collected from other players. But still, $600bn ISK, $13,000 – that’s an awful lot. Not to mention the feeling of betrayal, which you can’t put a price on.

For the full story, warts and all, hit up Evenews24.com. They’ll use all the right acronyms and everything. I tried to get into EVE a couple of times, but now I prefer to just read stories like this about it.

91 Comments

  1. toshiro says:

    Are we talking real dollars here? He stole 1300 real dollars worth of goods?

    • In Zod We Trust says:

      No, of course not. He stole $13,000 worth of goods.

      However, it’s always interesting to see these amounts, while they seem like a lot, could probably have been earned in a real job. I’m guessing players putting in these huge amounts of time and effort to a corp are putting in hours similar to a full-time job. I’d love to know from current players what sort of time commitment this deception would take. Maybe the linked article would have some details but I’m afraid of going down the EVE rabbit hole.

      And I’m reasonably sure this kind of deception is covered in the EULA in that all in game assets are at risk of in game actions. It might seem like a lot of money (and it is to individuals and groups alike) but for a lot of players it’s the risk of losing (or winning) these amounts that make it worthwhile. Still, I know I could ill afford any kind of loss like that.

      • VileThings says:

        What you have to keep in mind is that you can’t actually get 13k dollars for that amount of ingame money. You can put real money into the game but you can’t get real money out of it. The $ to ISK conversion is done by looking at PLEX. People can buy PLEX for real money, then put it up for sale on the ingame market for ingame currency. So effectively what the dollar number is telling you is how much you would have to buy in terms of PLEX to potentially get that amount of ingame currency (prices tend to fluctuate). However it’s very, very unlikely that even a small fraction of the stolen goods were paid for with ISK obtained by selling PLEX.

        • KDR_11k says:

          For people wondering: PLEX = Playtime Extension, i.e. paying for your game subscription with ingame money.

        • Abndn says:

          You can still sell the PLEX to other people for real money, or sell them for in-game currency and sell that to players. It’s not allowed by CCP and it obviously carries some risk with it, but it’s not like RMT trading that breaks a game’s terms of service is a new phenomenon.

        • tormeh says:

          Of course you can get real money out of it. Sell the ISK to a guy for cash in real life, gold farming style.

          • jezcentral says:

            As far as the EULA is concerned, you didn’t own it in the first place, and those who “stole” it don’t own it now, therefore no theft has taken place.

          • jezcentral says:

            Bah! Reply fail.

      • Crabtipus says:

        Yeah I feel like $13,000 for 6 months of work is not quite a fantastic payout, especially since if he want to sell that he’d probably make considerably less than the face value of the PLEX.

        • gwathdring says:

          You can’t make 13,000 actual dollars off it, though, as best I’m aware.

      • ATwig says:

        Current player here, here’s a rough breakdown for ISK per Hour for different things.

        Average PvE activity in 0.0 (Player Owned/Conquerable) space will net you 100Mil ISK/Hour

        Efficient mission running in High Security space can net you in the 150 to 200 Mil ISK/Hour range

        Incursions (Group PvE, 40+ People) Can net you above 200 Mil ISK/Hour

        Running sites (solo) in Wormholes can net you up to 400 Mil ISK/Hour (Lots of skill/knowledge of EvE required to do this “safely”).

        On the other hand those that play the in-game market or do large amounts of manufacturing can crank out Billions of ISK in a day for little-to-no effort (when compared to PvE activities). I do a moderate amount of station trading (Buy and sell in the same station, no hauling anything anywhere) and can crank out a billion a week for roughly 20 minutes a day (total, on that character) because I’ve been playing for so long and have a large amount of capital to invest. I do not make enough to pay for my game time using only ISK because I run multiple accounts but it could be done if I put more time into trading.

        Feel free to shoot me a message if you have any more questions about EvE! (I love this horrible game…)

  2. Lukasz says:

    I wonder whether those thefts don’t have real life consequences if one wanted to prosecute the theft.

    Just because it is virtual currency does not make the theft any less real as the amount stolen had dollar value

    • GameCat says:

      I’m pretty sure there’s a line about it in EULA that says that whatever happens in EVE, stays in EVE.
      It’s not like EVE is just ONLY a virtual currency like bitcoin. It’s more like very complex poker game with rule that you can steal tokens from the table.

      • CMaster says:

        I can’t think of any jurisdiction where something like a EULA (which isn’t really even a proper contract) would override liability in that way, never mind criminal law.

        However, EVE is safe because the conversion to real money is only one way. Money spent on PLEX is spent. There’s no (offical) way of turning ISK back into USD, Icelandic Kroner or even bitcoin. So nothing in EVE is actually an asset. It’s just a score in the game.

        • GameCat says:

          Of course EULA can’t override country laws, but in EVE buying in-game currency isn’t really much different than buying premium currency in F2P games, with one difference that other players can stole it using legit game mechanics and some supervillain crime scheme.
          But hey, no risk, no fun.

        • Akbar says:

          It’s not so much the EULA as the idea of consent. For the same reason that when you’re in a boxing ring you can’t sue for assault (unless of course they act outside the rules of the game), when you play a game whose mechanics allow others to take your money you can’t sue for theft (unless of course they act outside the rules of the game)

    • Mr Coot says:

      I think the best you could probably do, is make your corp directors sign real life contracts in their real names and affirming that their ingame aliases belong to them and that they are responsible for all operations conducted ingame under their aliases, then get them for breach of contract.

      Just guessing. I spose that is the avenue I would try if I were attempting to safeguard virtual wealth in a game. The law probably needs to catch up with virtual currencies to deal with real criminal money laundering scenarios and also to deal with all the F2P companies that flout gaming laws in respect of being required to publish odds for any game of chance (they get around the legislation because they are not selling you the gamble boxes for real money, but an intermediate currency).

    • Stevostin says:

      If that were true all poker players would be in jail. The law don’t acknowledge game’s debt, abusive win etc. Actually it’s interesting to know that until mid XIXth financial speculation was considered the same as game gambling everywhere. It took decades of intense lobbying all through Europe so that we can switch to that unique new paradigm in the whole course of mankind, where speculative banking is banked by the court and the police.

    • Yglorba says:

      Contrary to what articles sometimes imply, ISK has no cash value. It can’t be converted to real-world dollars in any reliable way (if you did manage to sell it via some outside channel, you wouldn’t get nearly as much as is listed, nor would you likely be able to move this much of it.)

      So there’s no legal issues involved, no more than when someone steals your resources in Catan.

      • Lanfranc says:

        So theft only applies to things that have a cash value? I’m not sure I agree with that. Even if they’re not directly marketable, ISK are still a form of (intangible) property. It all depends on jurisdiction, of course, but at least in English law I’m pretty sure ISK would be covered under theft.

        • P.Funk says:

          You must be fucking kidding me. Its game currency. The only reason people put cash labels on it is for sensationalism and because you can buy those things in game with money on a fixed rate.

          Even so, its an in game resource, its not real goods. Its part of the game. If we follow your logic then we can sue other MMO players who loot your corpse when they kill you or the developers for taking items away from you that you acquired as a result of money investment into the game.

          To try and even frame this as having real life litigious merit is hilarious. Eve is supposed to be a game of cheating and stealing and ganking. Isn’t there something in common law that suggests you can’t sue someone over something thats implicitly part of the bargain?

          • Abndn says:

            I agree with the general sentiment of what you’re saying, but these goods shouldn’t be presented as monopoly money. It’s relatively easy to turn PLEX and ISK into real life money on the ‘black market’.

          • P.Funk says:

            I didn’t realize that trading on a ‘black market’ was considered a legal form of commerce and so protected by law. :P

          • Lanfranc says:

            Relax, won’t you? I’m not saying it has any actual “litigous merit”, I’m just thinking of it as an interesting theoretical question.

            Anyway, since ISK is a resource that people put a lot of effort into acquiring, and since it can obviously be both bought and sold (just a moment’s googling found someone willing to pay $6 for a billion), I don’t see why it wouldn’t be considered a form of property. And theft, again in English law, is just “dishonestly appropriat[ing] property belonging to another with the intention of permanently depriving the other of it”.

          • Abndn says:

            P.Funk, I am not interested in involving law. I was reacting to your description of EVE goods:

            “The only reason people put cash labels on it is for sensationalism and because you can buy those things in game with money on a fixed rate. Even so, its an in game resource, its not real goods. Its part of the game.”

            This isn’t exactly an honest portrayal considering how easy it is to convert these goods into real currency. It’s clearly not just sensationalism when you can convert the “game resource” into cash within minutes.

          • nyxi says:

            You must be new. Back in 2006, Runescape gold was up to $20/1mill. I know a guy with $86,000 in his PayPal from flipping gold. To say ISK has no real world value is naive.

        • Abndn says:

          Next up: Blizzard sued over dead Hardcore (permadeath) character.

    • Batolemaeus says:

      I can’t see someone succeeding to even get heard when suing over Monopoly money.

    • KDR_11k says:

      It’s within the game rules though, if this was prosecuted they’d have to shut EVE down since war, piracy, etc would be illegal yet they are integral parts of the game design.

      • Press X to Gary Busey says:

        War, piracy etc. I understand since they are within the game mechanics but there is probably a line somewhere out there to cross around social engineering and conning other players.
        Would it also be within the rules to phish logins for corporate leaders or perhaps spreading some trojans? As long as it’s roleplaying perhaps? :P

        • Rindan says:

          Phishing and trojans are clearly covered under normal laws and are illegal, regardless of your reasons for doing it. There really is no gray line here. If someone rips you off in a videogame, your only recourse are the owners of the video game. This is like asking if you can call the police if someone cheats at monopoly and steals an extra 500 so he can buy boardwalk. The answer is no, you will be laughed out of court.

          More importantly, you categorically own nothing in Eve. You don’t own your ship, ISK, or anything else. CCP owns all of those things, and someone “stealing” them from you doesn’t result in theft from CCP. When you are ripped off in Eve, you start and end with the same thing; a subscription to play the game. That is the only thing that CCP is selling, and even that comes with the stipulation that they can kick you out at any time.

    • horsemedic says:

      I can’t vouch for her arguments, but this lawyer/author thinks you could make a court case against some MMO thieves. It would be a fascinating trial.

      link to books.google.com

    • Veles says:

      No because nothing in the game is actually owed legally by any player

    • Akbar says:

      I think it makes it absolutely less real, not so much in that it was a virtual currency but that it was all part of a game they were willingly playing. Imagine if in an mmo that had two-way money conversion (second life style), they had a (literal) thief class that relied on sneaking in the shadows and stealthily taking people’s stuff, including in-game currency. Would everyone playing this class be criminal liable to serious jail time?

      • Press X to Gary Busey says:

        Asia is at least a decade ahead of the west regarding MMO crime. Arresting a guy for cyber-mugging. =^.^= link to newscientist.com I’m sure there are more cases (probably a bunch from South Korea) if you google for more than my 30 seconds.
        The Dutch has arrested a couple of kids for MMO cyber-criming too (in RuneScape and Habbo Hotel).

        • airmikee says:

          The difference between EVE and those cases is that it isn’t against the rules in EVE to steal, whereas NCSoft and Lineage II do not allow bots to play the game for a player, and in the Dutch case it was an actual physical assault and threats with a knife until the victim turned over the virtual items in game.

          Any competent judge, anywhere, is going to reject the premise of the theft of items inside EVE as a crime, because it’s not against the rules of the game and there’s no illegal acts taking place outside the game.

    • Press X to Gary Busey says:

      Someone can have fun to test it in their local variety of legal system. Stealing RuneScape items is considered the same as theving a pair of clogs by the dutch supreme court at least (2012).

      • Premium User Badge

        lurkalisk says:

        This is not true. Said “teens” “…attacked another youth and forced him at knifepoint to relinquish his possessions in RuneScape.”

        It’s widely understood that they were tried for theft because they were kids. If they’d been a little more honest, the kids would have been hit with assault with a deadly weapon (I don’t know the nomenclature in The Netherlands), which would have been far worse for them. As it is, they only got 144 hours of community service.

        So in short, no. The Dutch supreme court decided armed assault is illegal, but muddled things a bit.

    • alw says:

      In that case, the next person I find cheating at Monopoly had better watch out, I can tell you..

  3. Zanchito says:

    I love this game. Don’t have the time to play it, but it consiustently generates cool fiction and interactions.

  4. Chaoslord AJ says:

    Love those occasional stories. Too bad I can’t muster time or intellectual ressources playing. Sounds like “dwarf-fortress”-complictated with lot of time commtiment and hostile multiplayer with the world’s best con-artists. :)

    On a side note there probably won’t be rl or admin. consequences because it’s part of the game. They could send some in-game police or investigators or hitman or whatever there is, good for the economy.

  5. Zafman says:

    So basically exactly what they show in their trailer happened.

    link to eveonline.com

    Nothing wrong with it, it’s all part of the game. Freedom… is never having to say you’re sorry.

    • Premium User Badge

      Risingson says:

      Ultraliberalism as the escapist world. Yay.

      • Gap Gen says:

        At least EVE is a pretend libertarian utopia turned sack of rats floating down a sewer, unlike the ones being seriously mooted (or having existed, like the Silk Road or pretty much any organised crime).

      • KDR_11k says:

        Meanwhile we play war games to relax…

      • Yglorba says:

        I read that as ‘utilitarianism as the escapist world’ and pictured… something very different.

  6. Premium User Badge

    Phasma Felis says:

    Yeah, see, I play video games to avoid having to interact with people like this.

    • P.Funk says:

      I find it curious that people wear that sentiment so commonly as a badge of honour.

      • Premium User Badge

        Phasma Felis says:

        And I find it weird that people do the same with the opposite sentiment, so I guess we’re even, huh?

        But no, it’s more like a badge of bewilderment. I mean, I’m not gonna be that guy who says that games I don’t like are WRONG and should be BANNED. If it makes you happy and it’s not hurting the stuff I like, feel free to juggle geese or whatever. I’m just confused. Zafman linked that EVE Causality trailer earlier, which basically says “In EVE, people will probably shit on you, but then YOU get to concoct elaborate plans to shit on THEM!” And I don’t get how that’s a positive. I don’t want to shit on (real) people or get shat upon.

      • wraithgr says:

        Actually it’s your curiosity that is weird… People don’t like the idea of others disobeyig explicit or implicit rules for unfair advantage. Game time is leisure time, so why would someone unwilling to spend their leisure time with the potential of having their progression wiped out be weird? Inb4 “but progression is meaningless without the potential for permadeath”–why would you think it’s ok to force people into your playstyle?
        It would be very interesting to see a study of income/education vs. propensity/aversion to ganking or whatever you want to call it. I wouldn’t be surprised if it turned out propensity for ganking was inversely proportional to rl income…

        • Abndn says:

          Indeed. Why would anyone wish to spend their leisure time differently from me?

          • wraithgr says:

            Hey, spend your time however you like, as long as it doesn’t involve me spending time in a way I don’t enjoy. If that is part of game mechanics I will either change my playstyle so it doesn’t happen anymore (solo vs. Open play in E: D is an ok-but-not-good example of this) or I will just move on to the next game that doesn’t force me to interact with assholes. If you think that’s weird, so be it–the fact that you hold that opinion makes me not care about what opinion you hold.

    • FCA says:

      I agree completely. It takes a special kind of person to read a top 10 dick moves article, and then treat it like a manual.

    • airmikee says:

      Exactly the same here. I don’t need to look far in real life to find thieves and liars, one of the reasons I play video games is to avoid the pondscum of humanities DNA pool. As much as EVE interests me, the playerbase ruins any chance I have of playing the game again.

  7. Blackcompany says:

    And this is why I left EVE. Its one thing to get screwed over by bad decisions in game. You didn’t realize you were flying into a well organized trap. You didn’t plan on the enemy having a Titan in their fleet. You went with too many cap drainers and not enough guns on your new load out test. Poor strategy or tactics leading to defeat, I can deal with, as its literally part of the game.

    This, on the other hand…this is absolutely NOT part of the game.

    Its not part of the game because there is literally nothing you can do to prevent it. At some level, somewhere, a single person in a Corp has to be responsible to assets. There is literally no way to avoid this and still have a Corp. And when that person defects, and decides to steal assets or Isk before leaving, well…there isn’t any mechanism in place to try and stop them.

    CCP needs to make a couple of changes here. First: Transfer of Corp assets needs multiple sign-offs. No one player should be allowed to transfer Isk belonging to a Corp to somewhere else. Multiple players need to sign off on these transactions, and the Corp needs to be allowed to designate who the signees will be for transfers because most Corps take the time to trace Alts and such.

    Second: EVE needs an in-game grievance system for this sort of behavior. Not talking about the ability to take out a bounty on this person. That is…not enough. EVE needs a mechanism by which it is recognized that this person stole from a Corp through betrayal and robbery, making them a different sort of criminal. This designator needs to come with punishments such as months of banning from High Sec, the inability to join another Corp for several months and the inability to access the market for a week or so.

    I’m all for Sandbox game play. But what happens in the Sandbox needs to stay in the Sandbox. And in EVE, players can be screwed over and lose everything not through their own in game decisions, good or bad, but because someone from Goon sat down with your Corp’s asset manager over lunch in real life and talked them into betraying you at 3am when you all log off. And that in all fairness really needs to stop.

    • Abndn says:

      It is part of the game. “Its not part of the game because there is literally nothing you can do to prevent it.” is not a good argument. Might as well say Royal Flush isn’t part of playing Poker because there was nothing you could do to prevent your opponent from drawing it. I also don’t buy the premise that there is truly nothing that can be done to prevent it, but whatever. You basically just have a really narrow definition of what is “part of the game”, and you present your close-minded, biased opinion as gospel.

      • P.Funk says:

        Yes there is something you can do to prevent getting your money taken by a royal flush, its called not betting and getting out of the hand, hence why Poker is a game not primarily of luck and chance but of choice. There was no hand to fold to many of those who suffer from this since they never had cards to play.

        What he argues has merit. What corporation would have a weakness of all its assets being so vulnerable? Nuclear submarines need two people with keys to unlock safes for god’s sake. Whats so unreasonable about corporations being able to set up rules like one person can’t just empty the savings account?

        I once watched a documentary on the development of the Boeing 777 and at the point when United Airlines was paying for an order of jets it was a fascinating scene to watch. You had the board of people making calls with United, you had them on the phone to a bank with a rep there, you had the Boeing people standing by to transfer ownership via another person on the phone to the FAA, and all this stuff happened on the phone one step after another with things contingent entirely on certain people signing certain documents and those being checked over then taken to be filed by lawyers and so forth.

        Its totally reasonable to expect that in Eve for them to give corporations the right to want safeguards as simple as requiring more than one person signing off on things. Thats one of the most basic forms of security.

        • Abndn says:

          He never argued what you’re saying he argued, and you are basically agreeing with me in a roundabout manner while attempting to argue against me. I think you’re confused.

          • P.Funk says:

            Having reread things I don’t find any issues.

          • Premium User Badge

            Phasma Felis says:

            No, P.Funk pretty much got it right.

          • Abndn says:

            I was arguing that games can have variables that are outside of your control, because Poker has variables outside of your control and is a game. You then tried to argue against me by telling me that Poker, despite having some uncontrollable variables, can be controlled in some sense, at least in the long run. You missed my point completely and argued with a fiction.

          • P.Funk says:

            As someone who knows poker I took exception with your description of it and perhaps you completely failed to make your point because you made a poor use of the poker metaphor.

            The argument that a game has things out of your control, ergo this is part of the game to me seems disingenuous. Most of what defines a game’s character is what it allows the player to control. The above mentioned security measures are one of the things that are obviously necessary to preserve the integrity of the game. Most of what drives the concerns of regulators and banks is the notion of confidence in the economy. How can you have confidence in an economy if stealing trillions is easily accomplished so long as you simply bide your time and possess no particular capacity for guile or subterfuge beyond doing your job and not telling them your plan?

          • Abndn says:

            It’s actually really simple, and there’s no need to continuously bring up the need for security measures that I never commented on.

            Poker is a game. There are elements of Poker that are completely outside of your control. Therefore, elements that are completely outside of your control can be part of a game. You can argue that it’s not essential to the game, and that it’s not gameplay, but no matter how you spin it, it can be part of one. Unless you want to claim that Poker isn’t a game, or that you somehow choose which cards you get.

            The OP said: “Its not part of the game because there is literally nothing you can do to prevent it.”

            There is literally nothing you can do to prevent someone from drawing a Royal Flush, even if you can work around that draw and take some degree of control of the overall game. Yet that draw is part of the game.

            Not sure how many times I need to repeat this before it sinks in, it’s really easy to understand if you don’t misunderstand deliberately to ‘win the argument’.

        • RedNick says:

          “its called not betting”

          So pretty much the same as in Eve then?

    • MattMk1 says:

      I was thinking along similar lines… though I think this just another, specific example of a bigger problem (or perhaps feature, depending on whether you’re a sociopath or not) that EVE and games like it have – the risk/reward structure is overwhelmingly skewed in favor of violating the social contract.

      The only reason people are able to get away with these “clever” heists is because the game doesn’t give players the tools to implement the trivially simple safeguards that would make them impossible, and because the tools it gives you for punishing this kind of behavior are utterly inadequate.

    • rexx.sabotage says:

      There is trust and breach of that trust. The only real risk or gamble is trusting another player. The betrayer has nothing to lose and everything to gain while the person extending that trust only stands to lose from it. This is entirely anti-cooperative, the antithesis of cooperation. Where working together is the worst thing you can do.

      EVE is a great example of that archaic design paradigm that inadvertently funnels players into finding the easiest, most efficient and often least fun method to play a game. I honestly don’t know how it has lingered on this long, new players bounce of it like rubber and then it’s toxic player-base is constantly corroding itself with antics like this. CCP has curated EVE into a hornets nest, a game where one person can easily degrade the experience of many others and without any repercussion.

      EVE is effectively a spaceship flavored disappointment simulator.

      • Kala says:

        Granted, I played many years ago when it was a smaller community and a lot has changed since then ; so you’ll have to take what I’m saying for the EVE of yesteryear, rather than the EVE of today…

        But EVE had the nicest community I’ve ever encountered in an MMO.

    • skorpeyon says:

      While I fully agree with your sentiment, I actually disagree with your solution. I think ONE of your two solutions should be implemented, and your second one is a bit too harsh in just one aspect. If you have someone labelled in-game as a traitor, you don’t ALSO need to disallow them from being able to join corporations. If a corporation is then stupid enough to let them in and allow them any kind of real responsibility, then that’s their own fault.

      Personally, I think the first solution would be much better, however I don’t actually PLAY EVE so I could be wrong. Multiple sign-offs and verification checks would make certain that the proper individuals are to be notified and then must confirm that the movement of funds is acceptable. This is similar to how things would work in a true corporation. The downside, however, is having to wait for a specific person or persons to be online and available in order to move funds, which may need to happen in a timely manner. I’d like to see a way to set a pool of people, as large as you wish, along with a certain number of verifications needed, in order to move certain quantities of money. That way you could say that a few thousand can be moved by one person, but a million needs a second authorization, and a billion or more needs five. Also the ability to name a specific person that MUST sign off on certain quantities of money, like the CEO. This is simply examples, but I think it would be relatively secure and make this sort of thing impossible.

      This is what I feel the CEO is referring to by “in-game” solutions to the problem. Not simply a mod saying “oh, no, no, no, you can’t just STEAL like that! Give it back”, but rather a way for the corporation to protect themselves from it happening in the first place. The real problem, the way I see it, is that things like this happening make people go “oh, this game sounds cool” and are actually a boon to the game and its devs. That makes it somewhat counter-productive to work against these thefts since it gets them ridiculous headlines and exposure.

      • alw says:

        I actually don’t think they should be stopped. Eve has always been a meta-oriented game, that’s a big part of it’s attraction. It’s the main reason I got into it years ago (although I’ve since quit).

        Having said that, I think there’s one big design flaw. There is no way to match a character with a player, which means that there are no real consequences for stuff like this. If you want to pull off a big heist, you use alts. Once it’s done, that alt will likely never be used again. Hell, even if you get found out, that character is easily deleted. Without consequences to the player, the decision to commit a “bad” act is meaningless.

        I have no idea if this can be fixed, but I suspect not, as it’s just too easy to create new characters.

  8. Heliocentric says:

    Hehe, pretend money is only meaningful when you can share or steal it. That flow is what stops it being meaningless.

  9. helmickdarian says:

    $89 an hour! Seriously I don’t know why more people haven’t tried this, I work two shifts, 2 hours in the day and 2 in the evening…And i get surly a chek of $1260……0 whats awesome is Im working from home so I get more time with my kids.
    Here is what i did
    ✒✒✒✒✒✒ http://www.jobsaudit.com

  10. cylentstorm says:

    *yawn*

  11. Voqar says:

    Who cares what happens in a game not worth playing for a variety of reasons, but including the fact that players can buy game currency for cash to cheat and it’s facilitated by the host company?

    As with GW2, WildStar, Trion’s MMO’s, and now soon to be WoW, these companies market paying for your sub with in-game cash as a way to cover the fact that players buy game time tokens with cash (for more than the normal cost of a sub/perk/whatever so the host profits more) and sells those for in-game currency, effectively buying in game currency for cash, as the backbone of these systems.

    Games that have built-in cheating aren’t worth playing and it’s not much of a surprise that such a game has criminals playing it or that the host company, who obviously only care about profit, wouldn’t do anything about the behavior of the cheaters that play the game. If you’re going to let players buy game currency to cheat their way thru why would you ever care about any types of rules or integrity?

    • Distec says:

      Virtually nobody playing Eve has issues with PLEX purchases as an option.

      Go ahead and drop some money on their mult-PLEX packages and see how far a couple billion in ISK gets you. Not very.

    • airmikee says:

      Guild Wars 2 has a subscription? Or is there another ‘GW2’ mmo?

  12. April March says:

    Wait, did he actually join the game solely because of the Cracked article, or was that just an embellishment? Because if he actually did it, I’m going to shout at Neal Stephenson again.

    • airmikee says:

      According to the source article, he joined the game to PvP and caught the attention of the corporation later.

  13. Rindan says:

    I really wish I liked Eve. If someone could just tear the combat in Eve out of the game and replace all the flying around bits with Elite Dangerous ship combat and flying, I would have a game that I love, instead of two games that I want to love but really can’t. Elite Dangerous is an awesome flight model on top of an utterly worthless “game”, and Eve is a great game held together by one of the most boring depictions of space combat in the history of mankind.

    All of that said, it does seem goofy that at this point Eve has not put in better corporation controls. It seems like a no-brainer that you should be able to limit withdrawal per day amounts for particular people without an arbitrary number of signoffs. Real life corporations do this. Just because you are in charge of assets doesn’t mean you can strip the corporation. You might be able to embezzle some money, but certainly not a large fraction of it without at least a little effort.

  14. zdeveloper10 says:

    A critical detail many seem to miss or go ” I know bt it still is unfair”is that this is actually a game mechanic. It would be like in Insisting a game should refund premium ammo because you missed a shot,or demand that it be illegal to use a strategy that’s not widely known. Obviously,that would be silly.
    while you could technically sell the virtual items for real money,when you buy the in game items you’re essential transiting your real money into fake money. If virtual cash and items were managed by real governments, it would have implications far beyond your fantasies of getting your money back if something happens. Note that I am talking strictly describing the transfer and loss of money in the game only. I’m not talking about if you received money in real life and we’re supposedly going to give them in game items but dont- that is different and is fraud. (I hope I described clearly how the two realms can seem similar but are not he same)

    • P.Funk says:

      People miss the point that the game offers no reasonable or plausible means to delegate tasking in an organization while providing any measure of security.

      Do you really think that one man could drain a corporate bank account? Do you really think that something as simple as “Player X is only permitted to transfer funds up to X value, beyond which the transaction is flagged, held, and the CEO/COO/whomever is informed and may then provide remote approval to continue said transaction” isn’t a reasonable mechanic?

      Do you really think that a game that offers players a means to gank someone that has literally no counter move or protection against it is in any way a logical or intelligent gameplay mechanic?

      • gwathdring says:

        Yeah …

        … imagine if in TF2, the Spy disguising as you suspended you into a waiting room. The spy could fire weapons at “enemies” (dealing no damage but making appropriate animations) and move exactly like you. Sure it’s “part of the game” that this can happen since it’ … well that’s just a matter of definition. But it’s a really shitty mechanic that makes people feel shitty so that one person can have immense and, to some people, gratifying power over other players.

        That’s a poor and really rather unsettling game design philosophy. And the developers of EVE back it up with utterly laughable platitudes and/or outright “for the lulz” carelessness.

        • airmikee says:

          Considering one of the devs got caught playing favorites with corporations, giving out blueprints like candy, and management refused to fire said unethical cheat, it doesn’t surprise me that they lack the moral fortitude to protect the majority of their playerbase from thieves and liars.

          So very few games get capital ship combat right, it’s a shame that one of them is ruined by the developers and a few players greed and laziness.

          • Kala says:

            You’re conflating two different issues.

            The idea that people could be thieves and murderers if they so wished is part the idea of a sandbox game and was implemented since day 1. (And takes it’s cues from an older game; Ultima Online, where you could also be a murderer and a thief). Basically, it’s part of the central ethos of the game to allow these things.

            The T20 scandal had little to do with the game being a sandbox and everything to do with one employee doing something unconscionable and very bad mismanagement of that situation by CCP.

      • Hahaha says:

        Not been keeping up with real life cyber crime huh p.funk

      • Kala says:

        …My information might be outdated here, but I thought you *could* designate security roles re: who gets access to the corp assets? That is a measure of security, isn’t it?
        The rest comes down to how much you choose to trust someone with those assets.

  15. FullMetalMonkey says:

    A friend of mine did the exact same thing a few years back to a medium sized feeder Corp. He worked his way up the ranks on a second account and when he had enough privilages, invited myself and several others to head to their POS in Orcas and stole quite a lot of their goods, fuel, ice etc and transfered all of the ISK into his other toons account.

  16. Hahaha says:

    Eve need to disallow alts so people who decide to do this have to live with their actions for the rest of the time they play, have fun being shunned and hunted every time you login to play.