【HEX】 Zero Tolerance. Protecting the ecosystem

Today’s daily update is by the president of Cryptozoic, Cory Jones.  As he had promised on the recent podcast, he talks about the security plan of the HEX.

What’s security?

Security in this context is not referring to log in process but rather securing the ecosystem of the game.

Any game that wants to combine community and collectables is only going to be as good as its ability to protect the integrity of those collectables and insure the core systems of the game are not exploited.

What happens when the security is violated?

You will get 5000 points damage (j/k).  At first this may be a bit counter intuitive, but let’s take a look at scenario.

When I imagine bots churning through our PVE experience to farm drops and flood
our auction house, my blood boils (we have powerful analytics in place to stop
bots, so this really isn’t a threat). But the idea of someone taking advantage
of this labor of love and the people that support it is totally unacceptable.

So what’s wrong with the above case?  HEX appears to have its core value as TCG i.e. play, but also the PvE part of the game is MMO/RPG driven i.e. collecting equipments/cards are at its core.  If you know you can just buy any equipment any time for perhaps relatively low cost, you may even not want to exploit the PvE world.  What happens next?  The less people plays PvE part, the less emphasis Cryptozoic places on it and eventually even the ones who was enjoying actual quest of PvE get harm.  Less frequent update, and even perhaps lose motivation to quest because the legendary equipment he got is not so legendary anymore since it is selling for 20 cents on auction house.

Cory Jones actually mentioned Diablo 3 on recent Podcast about this issue.  Though the direct impact may be less on HEX even such case happens, it will still ruin MMO/RPG part of the HEX, which is what makes HEX unique of a kind.

Another scenario would be someone abuses VIP system and tries to sell massive amount of booster packs in significantly lower price i.e. create 10,000 accounts and sell 10,000 packs every week for merely $1.10.

I love the cheaper price but if this is not global i.e. central decision made by Cryptozoic, it simply makes anyone whose not taking the discount advantage suffer.  All cards values will be lower as cards will be easier to get.  So perhaps no single card may worth $2 in a game, which means every packs you buy at retail may be a loss in price/value.

Don’t get me wrong, I actually hate Magic’s price point.  Paying $20-$50 for single card seems wrong in sense its making the game really pay to win situation.  Because not everyone can afford a playset of the card.  But at the same time when every card values become markedly low price i.e. almost negligble e.g. let’s say 10 cents.  Then you might as well pay 40 cents and get complete playset and probably as a collector don’t feel any satisfaction to the collection as anyone can have it.  And these cards will unlikely to go up in price ever.

So there is always a balance.  This is going a little side track, but personal sweet spot for completion of a entire playset for each set should be around $200-$300.  This is like buying a video game every month (new set is released every 4 months).  Considering the amount of time I can get out of this game, i think its more than fair value.

Source: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/cze/hex-mmo-trading-card-game/posts

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