Gold Spamming Damaging The Final Fantasy XIV Community
Gold spamming is a billion dollar industry so it’s no surprise to see the infection spread to every new MMO that hits the shelves. That trend proves true with the release of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn as practically every area you explore is spammed literally every few seconds. It has gotten to the point that many players are actually creating new chat tabs, or completely removing vital channels from their main tab; purely to avoid the excessive gold spam chat that hinders the game at the moment.
One can argue that the supply would drop if the demand wasn’t there, and that argument is valid. There wouldn’t be so much gold spam if there wasn’t so many people purchasing the gold. Although recent bans from Square Enix may reduce the attraction to buying gold, but it won’t solve the problem completely. RMT is a big problem today and many games still suffer with problems years after release. Jagex, the developers of the award-winning Runescape, recently reported that up to 40-50% of their player base can purchase gold in any given month. That’s a staggering figure for any MMO community.
The Final Fantasy XIV community already has enough problems without the added issues that come with gold spam. The ability for console players to play alongside PC players has many perks but communication isn’t one of them. The average PlayStation 3 player doesn’t have a keyboard for their console and without in-game VOIP, console players are quite often left out of the loop. So if an individual does spend a few minutes writing out a question or query, it’s not uncommon for it to go unanswered as people either don’t monitor the shout channel, or they’ve completely blocked it out.
There is no excuse for such weak efforts at solving this problem. The typical method of placing a player on ignore in MMO games is as simple as clicking their character or their name in chat, both of which are simple for PC and PlayStation 3 users. However Final Fantasy XIV deploys an entirely different method forcing people to navigate multiple menus before being able to ignore someone. The /blist add “name” command does help to an extent but it still involves a hell of a lot of typing for PlayStation 3 players.
So why are Square Enix totally ignoring the gold spammers? There are multiple easy-to-implement fixes that would help bandage the problem until a real resolution was found. Adding the ignore function to the users name in chat, restricting URL’s in chat, restricting spam to X amount of messages a minute, the list goes on. Plenty of other MMO games have solved the problem of chat spam and although the gold farming still exists in the underbelly of the game; the average player is not exposed to it every second of their journey.
Are you disappointed with the lack of communication from SE regarding this matter? As a PlayStation 3 player do you think it’s worth the effort to ignore the gold spam or do you just ignore the community as a whole?