RMAH and Cheating in Diablo 3: Bans Soon

With recent reports and interviews regarding different methods of duping and the bot market, Blizzard has formally addressed concerns and have released an official statement on the subject. The promise is that bans will be out… “soon(tm).”

Blizzard Entertainment has always taken cheating in any form in Blizzard games very seriously, and that’s no different for Diablo® III. If a Diablo III player is found to be cheating or using hacks, bots, or modifications in any form, then as outlined in the Diablo III end user license agreement, that player can be permanently banned from the game. This means that the player will be permanently unable to log in to Battle.net® to play Diablo III with his or her account.

Playing Diablo III legitimately means playing with an unaltered game client. Doing otherwise violates our policies for Battle.net and Diablo III, and it goes against the spirit of fair play that all of our games are based on. We strongly recommend that you avoid using any hacks, cheats, bots, or exploits. Suspensions and bans of players that have used or start using cheats and hacks will begin in the near future.

With the RMAH approaching within the next 24 (48?) hours (according to the in-game message), it is certainly in Blizzard’s interest to ensure that the economy is not plagued by inflation/stagflation that is caused by the rampant botting and exploitative play we’ve been witnessing. Many have voiced their opinions that it will be an inevitability. The economy rests on a balance of gold sinks, gold generation, and the average accumulation of items that are worth buying. Bots effectively undermine the nice charts DiabloWikiWyatt Cheng has in his office, and the repercussions could resonate through the future of game.

What are your thoughts on the current state of the economy? Do you have faith in Blizzard’s ability to negate the negative affects of the farmers? Since botters claim to be using an “undetectable” method, it makes me wonder how thorough this first sweep will be. If we look at Blizzard’s most recent titles/expansion, the future of the economy seems rather grim.

UPDATE: I’ve been getting comments saying people didn’t know that the RMAH was coming in the next day or so. According to the in-game message, the date has been set for the 12th for some time. This, along with the recent RMAH message posted early today on the official boards, it would certainly lead us to believe it will be this week (if not tomorrow).

Full RMAH post below the fold.

Region Auction Houses and Global Play

As we’ve stated before, players will only have access to the real-money auction house while playing in their home game region (The Americas, Europe, or Asia), and characters created outside of your home region will not be able to buy, sell, or use items from any real-money auction house. Your home game region, along with which real-money auction houses you have access to, are determined by the country of residence registered to your Battle.net account. By default, Battle.net will automatically determine the most appropriate real-money auction house for you, but players in some regions may be able to access auction houses for additional currencies in their region via the in-game Options menu.

If you intend to use either Battle.net Balance or PayPal to buy and sell items on the Diablo® III real-money auction house, there are a few important security measures you’ll need to have in place in order to access certain auction house features. We highly recommend that you set up your Battle.net Balance or PayPal account ahead of time, so you’ll be ready to use the real-money auction house once it’s live.

  • Battle.net Balance: Players who wish to use Battle.net Balance to buy and sell items will need to attach a physical Battle.net Authenticator or Battle.net Mobile Authenticator app (free for iPhone, iPod touch, and Android) to their Battle.net account. Specifically, an Authenticator is required in order to charge up your Battle.net Balance through Battle.net account management or to select Battle.net Balance as the destination for your auction proceeds.
  • PayPal: Players who wish to use PayPal (only available in certain regions/currencies) to buy items or receive the proceeds of their auctions will need to sign up for our Battle.net SMS Protect service. With Battle.net SMS Protect, you’ll occasionally receive a text message on your mobile phone when making PayPal-related transactions; this message contains a code that you must then enter to proceed with your transaction.

Even if you don’t plan on using the real-money auction house, we still encourage everyone to consider adding these extra layers of protection on their Battle.net account.

Note: Please keep in mind that players will be able to purchase items on the real-money auction house with other forms of payment, including major credit cards, that do not require the use of an Authenticator or Battle.net SMS Protect. Additional payment options are listed here. If you wish to sell items, however, and receive the proceeds of those sales, you will need to use either Battle.net Balance or PayPal.

In preparation for the launch of the real-money auction house, we wanted to take a moment to remind players of some important information regarding how the auction house will work and what to expect when using it once it’s available in your region.

  • Account Security and Using the Real-Money Auction House
  • Region Auction Houses and Global Play
  • Item Delivery and “Processing” Purchases
  • Commodities on the Real-Money Auction House

To learn more about the auction house system (including how to select your currency), check out the comprehensive Auction House Guide and Auction House FAQ.

Commodities on the Real-Money Auction House

As we prepare to launch the real-money auction house, we want to make sure that commodity trading (recently re-enabled in the gold auction house) remains quick, stable, and reliable. To that end, it’s possible that the real-money auction house will launch with equipment trading only (i.e. weapons, armor, and other such gear) and commodities would come online at a later date. The team is hard at work getting commodities ready for trading in the real-world auction house, and in the event it doesn’t launch with the real-money auction house, our goal is to activate this feature as soon as is feasible.

Item Delivery and “Processing” Purchases

Occasionally, players may have to wait for a period of time before an item they purchased in the real-money auction house arrives in their “Completed” tab. While we expect the majority of real-money auction house purchases to be delivered to buyers immediately, in some circumstances, we will need to hold items for delivery while we conduct a review of the transaction. Held items will show as “Processing” until the review is complete.

Related to this article
  • DiArmory Reveals…. Dupes?
  • The Great Gold Fiasco: Hoax
  • Asian Diablo 3 Realm: Massive Rollback to Remove Dupes

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    55 thoughts on “RMAH and Cheating in Diablo 3: Bans Soon

    1. Blizzard’s full of shit. I’d like to believe they have an “undetectable method” but let’s be honest–it’s warden, and the offsets are known. They’ve shown a distinct lack of ability to stop botting in all of their recent games, but suddenly, in D3, they can do it?

      They can’t foresee such obvious exploitation as canceling an option by turning back your system time. I had a good lulz, overall.

        • Yes, my thoughs as well. Also, so far every time I think things are about to start getting better, Blizzard has another /facepalm moment.

          Take the recent lag spike HC deaths, article on botting/famers, and now actual rollbacks due to duping.

      • Yup. And RMAH will be yet another testament for them. I’m still enjoying the game, but with as much time as they had, you’d think some of the blatant stuff would have been fixed during or even before Beta.

      • LOL I predicted this upcoming BAN HAMMER just a few hours ago on another post.

        You see what these cheating players …. don’t know (or didn’t realise) is that EVERYTHING in the game is not only tracked but Blizard has the KEY to the CASH out IN HANDS…

        Just check on the extensive procedures to cash out through PayPAl and you’ll understand that the cheaters with huge amount of gold will not be able to … cash out at all.

        Of course Blizzard is helped by PayPal too as they have experience with scams. it can take up to 21 days on PayPal to control the transactions and Blizzard already said they take 3 days out for each procedure…

        Look who’s laughing now 🙂

        My bet is that Blizzard will simply freeze the multi billion gold accounts when they try to cash out.

        As long as you don’t pass the GATE Keeper at the cash out procedure, your Gold is actually worthless. AND guess who has the key IN HAND … 🙂

        • I think you’re right in essentials. I’m curious to see how it goes down. Even IF they try to cash out, that’s not even the problem. Most of the botters are working on third party sites and have no need to worry about RMAH fine print.

        • This was a lot of babbling with just as much assumption.
          I don’t care or think it’s relevant who the “gatekeeper” is because this isn’t ghost busters.
          Warden is your “gatekeeper” and if it doesn’t detect what Blizzard claims it detects? Well guess what? They have no “key”.

          You can’t ban or freeze an account you aren’t aware is botting or cheating.

          • Read : check the procedure to cash out in the RMAH.

            It will be impossible to check out to real money without an investigation by Blizzard if huge amounts are concerned.

            All of the transactions AND activity in acquiring gold and gear CAN and WILL be traced in an automated way… on their servers.

            Hence they have all the data on their servers. Anyone checking out with say >5000 dollars a week will be back traced (as they said above). And if these data show suspicious quantities: the account will be locked and the game key deleted. Bye bye loot/gold.

            As simple as that.

      • The post doesn’t say that Blizzard said they have an undetectable method, it says the botters believe THEY have an undetectable method of farming gold. Blizzard wants people to know they have or will security in place, or at least they want people to think so as to deter activity that violates the ToS or EULA.

        As for their ability to stop botting, etc., maybe they have a way to prevent or stop it now? I doubt it, much like you do. There are a few things these companies should be doing.

        1. Hire hackers to actively try and break the game PRIOR to launch and offer a sum of money to anyone who provides a new instance of such. I’m sure there are legit players out there who have the knowledge and skillset to do so.

        2. Keep track of what players are doing and start investigating and banning AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, not wait until the problem gets out of hand, say, “bans are coming soon.” The longer you wait, the more damage will be done. How hard is it to find:
        A. Accounts that are actively playing 20+ hours a day, 7 days a week.
        B. Accounts that have characters named “asdfasdf” and such.
        C. Accounts with exceptionally large amounts of gold that are doing nothing with it.
        D. Accounts whose gold total regularly drop in increments by the million by trading.
        E. Accounts with extremely high Gold Find / Magic Find that run the exact same route over and over, never straying from their pattern.

        3. Hire people to actively search out botters, cheaters, etc. as a job. I can’t tell you how many bots I saw in FFXI Online even just last year simply by playing the game as per usual.

        4. This one is easy. HIRE MORE PEOPLE. Of all the gaming companies in all of the world, Blizzard should have more people than ANY other. Why? Simply because of their userbase. Their games tend to attract more players, people, and press than most others. So why does it always feel like they are understaffed?

        Will this catch some people who are legitiment? It’s possible, but there are ways to verify that people are legitimate even if they meet these criteria (although A. is probably the easiest sign) and then confirm with those players (email, in-game, etc.) that they are in fact legitimate / human BEFORE dropping the ban hammer on them. And besides, should you happen to somehow STILL have a legitimate player on the list, you know that as soon as they are banned, they will rage about it. Botters won’t. They don’t want the attention.

        • 2. Keep track of what players are doing and start investigating and banning AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, not wait until the problem gets out of hand, say, “bans are coming soon.” The longer you wait, the more damage will be done. How hard is it to find:
          A. Accounts that are actively playing 20+ hours a day, 7 days a week.
          – A lot of people do not need to work and spend all day playing.
          B. Accounts that have characters named “asdfasdf” and such.
          – You can name your acc whatever you want
          C. Accounts with exceptionally large amounts of gold that are doing nothing with it.
          – If you play a lot, sell a lot, you will end up with exceptionally large amounts of gold that you might prefer to save for when everything is dirt cheap
          D. Accounts whose gold total regularly drop in increments by the million by trading.
          – By trading on the AH and buying lets say a weapon with 1200 dps you can spend easily 20 mil, or you could specialize on buying out cheap items and then reselling them
          E. Accounts with extremely high Gold Find / Magic Find that run the exact same route over and over, never straying from their pattern.
          – I actually stack gf and mf and do run the same spot repeatedly

          – the truth is that as long as the d3 client isn’t manipulated, they can not do anything about it

          you can have a program that does NO altering of the D3 client whatsoever and is “very sophisticated” and still automates these runs

          There is nothing blizzard can do, the times where cheats were primitive and altered the client etc are over. Blizzard faces a whole new era of smart programmers that use techniques and aproaches to cheating that can not be detected because they behave in such a way like a human would (running the same area 1000 times a day).

          • I agree with the rest of your stuff, but not this:

            A. Accounts that are actively playing 20+ hours a day, 7 days a week.
            – A lot of people do not need to work and spend all day playing.

            They still need to sleep. 20+hrs a day 7 days a week is not humanly possible unless the account is being used by multiple people. FWIW, i’m guessing the latter is against the TOS in D3/bnet.

          • Hey, I have an idea! A new game mode : bot hunt. Allow people to easily join and PK players that are suspected to be bots. Should solve the problem nicely, and might be fun for a while… (and if the suspected player is not a bot, he will certainly react to people joining his game and trying to kill him!)

        • I disagree with “BAN THEM RIGHT NAO!1!!” attitude. If you do that, you willll catch a lot of small fries, but the big fish will remain at large. What you do is let them get away with little things to observe how exactly they are exploiting the game. This allows you to create a detection method with which you can find smarter hackers that otherwise would be untracable.

    2. Hope I won’t get banned for my graphics filter. Makes the game playable for me. I guess my eyes just can’t handle candyland demons for long periods of time.

      darkd3 dot com if you’re interested in checking it out. It may not look like much on the screenshot (I didn’t think so anyway) but it’s great in-game. You can toggle it on and off with a single key in-game too if you get sick of it.

      AND you can compile the source code yourself to make sure you’re safe from any tomfoolery.

      • What setting does the default files enable? Normal? Hardcore? I know you can edit settings.h but there isn’t much more info given with the download.

        • I’m not sure. I just toggled a few settings back and forth until I liked the way it looked, I might have ended up back where I started. Judging from the screenshots on the website, mine is set to Hardcore.

      • I experimented a bit with it, and it makes the game completely unreadable on my screen. Experience will vary depending on your screen, but on mine, it’s terrible.

        Ok, not COMPLETELY unreadable, but it’s certainly a lot worse.

        And the colors are just stupid dark.

        And the screen is hard to read too.

      • I came here specifically to find an answer to this question. I don’t think I could play D3 anymore without it, the oversaturated colours really SHOUT at my eyeballs without it.

        Guess I’ll just leave it on and see if I get banned? Where would we ask Blizz about this?

        • There has be a mention about by Jay Wilson? saying they dont want people using it. But you should be safe I think unless it modifies a D3 file as all it doing is modifying your graphics output. Though TBH I cant see anything in it that cant be done without it via fiddling with monitor settings etc.

    3. Blizzard has never been able to prevent cheating. They promised kicking single players to the curve would mean no hacks, bots, or dupes online. That was a promise not kept. Those of use who said online-only would not prevent cheating were called trolls and haters. But we were proven correct.

      The RMAH will mean no good gear will be available on the gold auction house. Bad for the game.

      • I believe it was an attempt primarily to prevent duping (which it does admirably). Having online-only creates incentive to bot and presents increased security risks – all of which are absent via single-player.

        Not sure if you missed it, but they’re doing an entire realm rollback to negate the affects of the methods in Korea. Ever remember that going down in Diablo 2? Seems that their main concern is the economy.

        That being said, I’d have thought they’d up their game for bot/hack detection to ensure the stability of the economy.

      • They didn’t say security would be perfect (nothing anywhere is), they just said it would be better. And it *is* far better and will continue to improve.

    4. I hope the ban hammer drops hard on all the names we’ve all been reporting for various offenses just an hour before the RMAH goes live so that any offenders that haven’t already moved their ill gotten gains to “clean” accounts will be caught with their pants down.

      • I don’t understand why Blizzard can’t bad those “clean” accounts too. They must keep track of gold transactions, it should be pretty simple.

        And ban the paypal accounts for good measure too.

    5. meh, I am not afraid to bot, won’t do the others. But choose not too, because too much of a headache (i even used mouse’s maphack… or was it boba fett? i am getting old)

      I play the game fairly, grumble at silly 200 mil prices for upgrades and just do my own thing. If i stay clean then I have nothing to fear.

      and we all narrow our eyebrows at blizzard saying “how do you expect to protect diablo 3, when you can’t do it with any of your other games”

      it is not blizzards fault there are people who spend 24/7 trying to ruin the enjoyment of everyone. Trying to get ahead using unfair tactics. It is not their fault at all.

      if we as a community were honest, loyal, and respectful as a whole. Then we wouldnt have this problem. If we didn’t try to exploit and manipulate our surroundings to fill our personal need for greed and power… then we wouldn’t have a problem.

      None of this is Blizzards fault, and really pointing a long finger at them freaking out does not help.

      Nothing is perfect, and we can only hope the way they fix it, will try to bandaid this up. but honestly, there are kids/teens/young adults/pricks with nothing better to do then screw with the lives of those around them. No reason needed, it is just like asking diablo why he is a jerk.

      • Wait… you’re saying it’s the hackers/cheaters/whatever fault that they hack/cheat/whatever? And not Blizzard’s? And we should be angry at the people who directly make everyone’s gaming more irritating?

        But how will I get e-cred and make bobbyeyes jokes then?

        • Mmm, … WHY do you think there are 100’s of posts complaining D3 had an online security and an upcoming in game RMAH ???

          If you think this hating campaign against the game’s severe controls of hacking, duping and the battle against gold botters … came from innocent players, well you are the most naive person in the world.

          Unless you belong to that group of course who have intrest to accuse a RMAH, on line mode and hacking rumours about Blizzard.

          TLDR: The Gold MAffia will piss their pants once Blizzard controls the cash out procedure in D3.

          • It’s possible that some of the people who are complaining about online only are thwarted cheaters, but certainly by no means all of them. There are also

            a) the millions who hate online DRM of any kind, and who complain bitterly about it in every game that uses it, including all those games where there is no gold market… because they don’t think that other people’s piracy should affect their gameplay experience

            b) hardcore players who don’t like dying to lag spikes they have no control over

            c) single-player people who see no reason they shouldn’t be able to play whenever and wherever they want to

            There are plenty of pretty good reasons to dislike it, besides a desire to cheat :p

    6. Actions speak louder than words and so far (given WoW and SC2) Blizzard have proven themselves to have more bark than bite when it comes to cheaters.

      • But this time Blizzard has the end control key in house.

        It is called the cash out key. In order to cash out real money you’ll need to pass the gatekeeper.

        And that gatekeeper consists of all AH data. Why do you think Blizzard installed a 3 day waiting period to cash out (and asks a double control on an individual cell phone for EACH transaction).

        They know exactly WHO is selling with which method and I predicted it on another forum post just a few hours ago this BAN HAMMER was going to happen.

        I just want to see that guy’s face who invested 6000 dollars to farm billions of gold over 100 accounts … just to see it confiscated by Blizzard before he can cash out.

        It will be VERY simple to track down the trading… because everything is IN game now.

        The only thing these guys can do is selling on shady websites which will be very unpopular as of now, as they are the source of all hacking attempts. Everyone knows that by now.

        :))) great Blizz !

    7. I defy every way of cheating, but I actually do hate the fact that if Blizz decides to ban you, you cannot play with the game you bought any longer. It just sucks.

    8. Well, we’ve seen they have access to player data. They’ve made statistics about skill usage and such… So even if Warden sucks, what would prevent them from doing some manual search of the cheaters ?
      How long would it take them to check the logs of the 1000 people who have the most gold (yeah because we all know the biggest cheaters have been pilling up gold eagerly awaiting for the rmah to go live) and see if they’ve acquired it legitimately or through hacks/exploits and ban those shits right before launching the rmah, getting rid of everything that would pollute the economy ?

      I know if I was one the higher ups at Blizz, that would be my plan exactly. Plus they’ve had time to quietly gain intel on the bots and such, and might just have a warden live update ready to catch so many more cheaters red handed…

    9. To quote:
      “Blizzard Entertainment has always taken cheating in any form in Blizzard games very seriously”

      Ah, nope.
      Evidence: the rune word Last Wish in Diablo 2x. The odds on legitimately getting 3 x Jah runes in the online game are beyond ridiculous. This is PR nonsense from Blizzard, they played along with the dupers in D2, quite obviously.

    10. They take cheating seriously, except when they can profit from it :cough RMAH:

      And yeah, if you pay to win, you’re a cheater. Period, the end.

    11. Hoping the best for the future of the game itself, I would appreciate a signal from Blizzard clearing at the least the big cheaters from the game.

      But in our times it is a pity because all depends on money and so it will depend on which suites Blizzard the best they will do!

      I still enjoy the game, keep on going, trying and *sign* farming and one day I will get past Act 1 Inferno 🙂

      Greetings from Russia

    12. Where’s my post?? Lost it, never mind…
      Duping is not cheating (according to what Blizz wrote).

    13. Bnet forums are absolutely ridiculous at the moment. The general chat is exponentially crazier than usual with supposed botters and dupers running around flaunting billions (literally) of gold/dollars while everyone else is trying to outcomplain each other. I have no idea how much of that crap is true but it’s seriously depressing. I feel sorry for Blizzard.

      Good thing this website exists and offers some sanity :).

    14. I wonder… even if they avoid the cashout for botters/farmers, there will still be a major inflow of in-game gold. This is going to continue to negatively affect the GAH, isn’t it ?

    15. anyone caught with a bot or cheat should get permanent ban so even if u buy a new cdkey u cant play otherwise this game will be destroyed like d2 with bots and mass duped items and gold…

    16. Yes, please give warning in advance, so the cheaters can move all their gold to a clean account.

      I vote for banning without warning. Also you could ban accounts based on the IP. So if it’s clear that someone is botting with other accounts and collecting the gold to a clean account, it could be banned also.

    17. It is very tiring to read through post after post of folks that havn’t used or observed the auction house and how it is functioning. It is very very similar to a housing market with greedy gold diggers at every turn but for every single million dollar item they sell, when they go to buy, it will be a mill or more and so in the long run it fuels the eventual collapse of the market.

      We have item flippers too. I personally release items in to the auction house cheap to cycle them fast and get more people equipped to play more and get more items and hence, bringing down prices over all. Flippers buy out cheap items and resell at over inflated prices. It is like adding a middle man that does nothing but drives up the costs. Eventually the market crashes and everyone realizes how screwed they have gotten.

      The RMAH is a different story altogether because 90% of people I have spoke to that wish to actually make any money out of it plan to never ever buy anything off of it. What kind of economy functions like that?

      That would be Greece, or America you are describing, wanting something for nothing

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