Hello fellow readers,
today we will start a new series, that will evolve solely around RMT (Real Money Trade) in Eve Online. I believe for all of us its very interesting topic, that if being under rug swept like till now, could potentially destroy the game experience for many of us. Well bring you interview with the main RMT guy in eve and well have some nice exposures on accounts and characters who bought isk.
The summer of 10 an expose on RMT
my name is Manfred Sideous and I had been wanting to learn more about the RMT underworld. While in charge of -A- I had heard things and seen things and been told many things. However I never understood how all the pieces fit together. How the process works how the fear of being banned isn’t a deterrence. I will forewarn people alot of what I will write here is speculation. However the speculation is based off of conversations and alot of digging around. First before I go into the summer of 10 and how events that happened in Eve were based off RMT let me first show you RMT the hows & whys.
Most of us have all encountered our share of macro’s in Eve. They are so common now that regular players have started using them for passive income. CCP has only made trivial attempts at curbing RMT or dealing with bots. Unholy Rage CCP’s much publicized campaign www.eveonline.com/devblog.asp?a=blog&bid=687 was supposed to be the curbstomping of RMT’rs. But was it? The most simple answer is NO they didn’t even scratch the surface.
There are programs players can purchase that will happily shoot NPC’s for you all day long. Examples of such are: www.reboot.gr. As advertised this program will earn the user up to 40 million ISK per hour. All you need is a ship a quiet system and the ISK rolls in.
As you all know players can purchase 60 day game time cards for cash from CCP or other merchants such as Shattered Crystal www.shatteredcrystal.com/code.php/eve_online. As you can see they cost about $35.00 USD. Players can also sell purchased GTC’s on Eve Online forums for 600-800 million isk. www.eveonline.com/ingameboard.asp?a=topic&threadID=1424015
That comes out to roughly $1.00 USD per 20mil ISK. The other option for players looking to get there monies worth is to buy via RMT sites like this one for example: www.playerassist.com/eve/ . As you can see you can purchase 1 billion isk @ $ 31.00 USD which comes out to about 32 mil ISK per $1.00 USD. A substantial increase of over 20-40% versus using the CCP approved method of purchasing ISK.
So a average botter can make $ 2.00 USD per hour. Nothing exciting to most people as that isn’t enough money to be worth the effort unless $2.00 USD were worth the equivalent of $60.00 Rubles in your country. What are rubles worth and what will they buy? www.sv-agency.udm.ru/sv/prices.htm . Not bad for letting your computer play the game for you for a single hour you just bought a pack of smokes or a loaf of bread. What if it played for you for 12 hours a day everyday all month. 21,600 Rubles. Thats about 700 bucks a month in USD. The average russian family lives off a income of 600-700 USD or 19K to 21K Rubles.
So how does the average botter sell his ISK. You would think it would be complicated and shady looking from the outside. The truth though is its a completely pain free and easy process. Sites such as: www.mogs.com/players/ simply allow players to create a sellers account. Once a account is created players deposit ISK by various means which is tracked and verified by API. The player then receives his money via paypal or other medium.
Deposit by Various Means?
There are several ways to funnel ISK around Eve. My personal favorite is the contract system. Using characters to spy on other alliances over the years has taught me how to move isk on and off of spy toons without leaving a trace. All over Eve there are contracts made for exorbitant amounts for virtually nothing. A item exchange for a noobship for a billion ISK. A market order for a module or ship greatly overmarked. To the naked eye and too CCP these simply look like a scam and a good portion are good ole ~honest~ scammers. However though moving isk in these manners provides a veil of protection for seller and buyer. If ever asked the buyer is a scammer and of course the seller is the poor sap that was scammed.
So what happens to the ISK once sites purchase it?
After being funneled into collector toons ( noob toons that are destroyed after a period of time). It is then funneled again into a holding corporation wallet via contract system or other means. These corporations generally have 1 person in the corp most times the “CEO”. The CEO never personally engages in any isk transfers of any type. When a buyer places a order for isk a Feeder toon is created. The Feeder toon applies to the holding corp and the CEO approves the app giving the toon roles to the corp wallet. The Feeder withdraws the buyers order amount and then a trade is made. Immediately roles are jerked and after 24 hours the Feeder is kicked and then subsequently destroyed. If CCP ever ask guess what ” The Holding corp was robbed and the offender was kicked immediately”. Whoa-la there is your RMT system in a nutshell.
Now I know I made some generalizations mentioning Russians. Most russian players are people just like most of us playing a MMO for fun. There are other groups with large RMT sections most notably Serbians. Now RMT isn’t limited to botting , however botting is a easy way for a individual to get into RMT. Other common methods are plexing market manipulation etc etc leading up to the grand daddy of them all Space Empires.
Everyone has heard these rumors for years now. Accusations and rumors have flown all over with claims that XXXX alliance or YYYYY alliance is a RMT alliance. These are partially false and partially true. Usually the case is most of the players in alliances are legit and have nothing to do with RMT. Usually the case is its a select few at the top collecting tax or income or controlling markets that are the RMT’rs. Its amazing the lengths they go to to hide there activities.
Most notable and most exposed was Sir Lordex. The aluminum Tycoons son. He was part of Red Overlord but before you pass judgement most people in Red Overlord never understood what was happening or even aware. Lordex went so far as to employ the sevices of Nync. Employee “whatcha talkin bout willis”? In order to have a quiet and secure empire in which to farm from Red Overlord had to appear “Scary”. Nync’s sole purpose was to accomplish this image. He was paid a salary to gallivant around Eve “Nyncing” people and being a meanass scary Russian. This he did with brilliance only one problem though. Loose lips sinks ships and as you all know the GIA broke the story of Lordex’s operation. Lordex was pretty sloppy along the way and apparently had made mistakes and CCP caught him and banned him. Only that doesn’t stop someone with a successful business. So they caught him and banned him each time he tried to setup shop until the rich kid finally had his fill and left eve in disgust.
Poor Nync now without a paycheck what to do he pondered. Then as a desperate act he tried to stage a Coup in ROL and grab the alliance wallet and control over the alliance. Unfortunately he was stopped and stripped of roles and removed. That as you can remember was early summer late spring of 2010. So Nync liking his ” Money for nothing and Rubles for free” decided to move over to White Noise with Psychooo another russian guy who in the past is rumored to have done some nefarious things IRL. Together they would build a new empire. Other things were happening though in Eve. Old grievances were settled and Red Alliance put themselves back together. Suddenly Nync Uax and Mactep were all on good speaking terms again.
First though White Noise needed a stable area in which to build there empire. Turns out Uax and Mactep didn’t like having Atlas next door because they were always a threat to muck up the drone empires which are as profitable as regular empires but harder to run and maintain. Things like pesky wars really can gum up the works and slow production.
So a offer was made to Atlas I actually hosted the meeting. Nync and Psychoo asked Bobby Atlas to give up Insmother and Wicked Creek. For this there would be no war and White Noise would become a ally. The deal breaker however was that Red Alliance got a region. Now there is nothing more in Eve Bobby Atlas hates other than Red Alliance. Bobby went apeshit crazy on teamspeak and started screaming ” Fuck them motherfuckers Im not giving them shit . Ill quit my job and live off welfare and goverment cheese and stomp there ass in the ground im not giving them shit”. At this point my jaw was on the ground knowing that Bobby had just signed us up for a war with A newly united RMT coalition. Fuck me ” welp bobby I gave you my word -A- and Atlas will stick together” I said. The next day I made a CAOD announcement with a Youtube video link to rightsaidfred ” your my mate”.
Interview with Bobby Atlas can be found on our site – www.evenews24.com/2010/12/02/the-enigmatic-mystique-of-bobby-atlas/
Things were going well in the defense of Atlas space until the Legion was hired tipping the balance. Fast forward a few months and the new empire is created. The RMT coalition is strong and fighting off the NC as best as possible with the Legion still employed.
Disclaimer* There are lots of details I still don’t have and most likely nobody will ever have unless someday one of the big players decides to write a memoir of there time in eve. The idea of this thread/article had been swimming around in my head for a long time. It was finally just watching the lengths the people would go to protect/hide there empire and just how naive most people are about it. Ultimately my brain just needed to spit this out and it makes for pretty good conversation even though I fully admit that a good portion of it is based off of bits and pieces ive collected with some speculation and deductive reasoning thrown in to reach conclusions.