The Recent Blizzard Entertainment’s Revoke Of Third-party Purchases Demonstrates Why We Need Decentralization And Proof Of Authenticity
Many people are discussing the news story that, for a change, does not bash Blizzard Entertainment, but still focuses on a very bad thing that happened to Diablo III players. It seems that the game just cannot catch a break. Many users and critics are bashing the title for its predatory monetization and pay-to-win mechanics that remove the need for any in-game activities for people who can just pay their way to the top.
Whether you like this model or not, many noticed that it costs upwards of $100 thousand to gear up a single character which is way too much for many gamers. However, life finds a way as Zerg says (a fictional race of intergalactic hivemind species from another Blizzard’s title StarCraft). Many third-party resellers started listing very cheap orbs and other in-game stuff. How can one buy a massively overpriced cosmetic item that goes for up to $1000 in the game for less than $10? Fraud, of course.
Third-party resellers are using stolen credit cards, and gift cards, and use price discrepancies between different regions to make in-game items cheaper for end-users. Of course, using illegitimate, unlawful methods to obtain items is not something that any company wants to happen or continue. To ensure that the message is clear, Blizzard started revoking such items from players and leaving them with a notional debt with some people seeing over minus $35 thousand to their names.
Players with negative balances cannot do any in-game activities. Many decided to move on from the game. It is their choice. The issues of gamers who decided to spend hundreds of dollars on their items are not our concern, but the inability of users to identify authentic items in the sea of fraudulent offerings is what we are concerned with.
Blockchain has solutions like NFTs. Yes, non-fungible tokens seem to be less exciting than white papers told us, but other instruments can allow users to easily identify authentic items on the market and track their origins. The recent blunter by Blizzard shows us that we need this in the gaming industry.