Saturday, 24 April 2010

The "free" Tears and Scales fiasco

Well, folks, they've done it again.

This week, I read in the DC league chat that there's a sudden promotion with tears and scales at 1 coin/pack. I logged to the IM, got 1 pack of each, thinking I'm set for the next year.

A little later, in a forum post, Fugen stated that the 9D Item Mall was hacked and those items shouldn't have been there at that price. A lot of people bought more than 1 pack, and even more gifted those very cheap items (after browsing through the posts, the record i saw was 600 scales and 69 tears).

I will not discuss the cases that spammed the "Buy" button. They can be labelled as greedy. What bothered me was the fact that the head GM called the people who took advantage of that "promotion" thieves and scammers. Last time I checked, thieves were the people who took something that is not rightfully theirs. The Acclaim team claims that we were supposed to know better, after the "free xp card" IM bug.

What I do find a gross lack of proffesionalism and care for their customers is the attitude displayed by both Fugen and The Hermit. Instead of admitting their failure to keep their Item Mall safe (if that is really what happened and it's not just an oversight by someone responsible with maintaining that page), they put the blame on the people who bought the wrongly labelled packages. The fact that those things costed 1 coin each means that only people who have already bought from the IM were able to get them.
Calling your paying customers thieves and scammers is not exactly the way to keep them satisfied and buying. I expect a fair number of people taking a break from getting stuff from their IM.

On the same note, the people who have gotten the almost free scales and tears are now expected to return them, even if they are gifted. So to those league members who have gifted any of these items, please talk to the people who you've gifted them to, to put the weapons in the first slot of their bags. Fugen said they would remove the scales from those, and not confiscate the weapons. Also, please post in this thread how many packages you have purchased and where they ended up. I would hate to see leaguemates banned for taking advantage of that offer.

On another note, the promotion that started on April 21st (Tibetan Medium Spender) was accompanied by a 2x bonus coins promotion. All the items in the Mall were at full price. I think this promotion is one of the worst planned ones I have seen since starting this game. First of all, it replaced the "tibetan refinement pack" promotion, that was supposed to last 1 more day, without any notice. Second, on April 24th they decided to add another promo: 50% off the Item Mall.
Some people have spent A LOT of coins between Apr 21-24. It's natural that they feel cheated, especially after the scale/tear fiasco. In a typical "My customers=my slaves" kind of attitude that we keep getting lately, Fugen and The Hermit said:
[GM] Fugen Sorry guys, it works the same way on 9Dragons in the Item Mall as it does on a site like There are various promotions, and from time to time there may be a larger sale. If you bought a book the day before Christmas and it goes on sale on 12/25 for half off, they don't send you two books or give you half your money back.

You're still able to take advantage of the sale and employ some dollar-cost averaging by stocking up on more items.

9D Hermit: I doubt anyone would like Acclaim to turn the sale off now??? Would you have preferred it be next week? Or now while you can have DBL Bonus Coins and the Tibet Medium Spender Package? Even if you'd already spent prior, I think you'd still be interested in the added value even if we'd finished the promotion, waited a week with full prices, and run the promotion again with 50% Off thrown in.

And what about the player who paid full price for an Item the day before any promotion started? Or a player that was buying a promotion during the week and then Curse You Lord Mara Double Bonus Coins just came on!!!

Often we get promotions sent down from Those On High, and they could be Acclaim Wide promotions that do not even make sense in tandem with a 9D promotion.

Promotions can overlap.

We think it's a good thing.

Use it to your advantage, I say

So, in the end, this week's conclusions are:

1. We, the paying customers of Acclaim, are thieves and scammers.
2. We must return the items that we payed for and were underprice, otherwise risking to be banned.
3. They can change their promotions unexpectedly, without a few day's notice, but if we see a promotion, we should not immediately buy, because we risk getting banned.

Enjoy the compensation event (today and tomorrow 12-20 GMT) and reap the bountiful fruits of capitalism (end sarcasm here).

A tired Squirrel, over and out.

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