Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Would You Buy Something You Know is a Dupe?

With the recent release of a video showing many different methods to duping (no I will not give any clues how to find it because I do not support duping and I do not want to see anyone lose their account) and reading some responses on some boards across the net it made me wonder what is the feeling of the general community.

While you can get a basic feel on the forum posts about it those are usually not the best place to gauge the pulse of the community.  Mostly because many people on the forums put on a persona and pretend to be that person, the elitists, the trolls, etc.  It is not really a great place to get honesty, but it sure is interesting to read sometimes.  I am looking for more open and honest answers and hopefully I can get them.

So the question at hand is this, Would you buy an item that you know is duped?

Say one of the panthers are on the auction house, you know the ones that cost over 80K just in materials to make, but it is sitting there for 20K buy out, would you buy it knowing that is it probably a dupe?

Lets say you are in need of savage bloods and they are currently 400 gold each on the auction house but there is some guy spamming trade selling them in stacks of 50 at a time for 200 per, would you buy it from him and save half?

These are two difference cases, one is over the auction house, the other is done exchanging things in a trade window.  Would your answer be the same for both?

Now I will give my answer which I would buy the panther off the auction house but I would not buy the bloods from the guy in trade.  Even if I knew both items were duped.  The reasoning I would don one and not the other is rather simple, I would be looking out for number 1, which is myself of course.  I will explain.

Why would I buy a duped item when I have already stated I do not support duping in game?  The answer is simple.  I would save gold on the item I wanted and it is not my fault that blizzard does not fix these open bugs in their game. 

Some duping methods have been there for years and it is not like duping is something new, it has been going on for years and everyone know it, blizzard just does nothing (openly) about it.  So why exactly should I feel bad about buying said stuff when blizzard appears to not care either?  If they fixed the bugs that allowed people to dupe then guess what, I would not buy duped items as there would be none for sale.

But why would I buy one and not the other you might ask, and you would be right to do so.  That is because an item purchased on the auction house is clean while an item that exchanges hands is not.  With the auction house there is plausible deniability, when exchanging hands there is none.

I might "think" an item on the auction house is a dupe but that doesn't mean it is.  Don't tell me you never caught a steal off the auction house.  I can not tell you the number of BC epic gems I purchased off the AH in wrath and cataclysm that were listed for less than they vendored for.  People make mistakes, I capitalized on it by purchasing them and selling them to a vendor for profit.  I've done that with ore, herbs, gems, etc, over the course of the years.  If you list something for less than I can vendor it for, I am going to buy it and vendor it.  I have no aversion to free gold thank you very much.

But there is not just that case, there are dozens of others.  I've purchased a stack of ore for 40 gold when the guy clearly meant to list it at 40 gold per item, not per stack.  I have purchased a pair for BoE bracers (I think) in cataclysm for 2K when all others listed up there were 20K because the guy forgot a 0.

Bottom line is, people make mistakes, we all do.  So while I might "think" the panther on the auction house is a dupe maybe it is just someone that made a mistake.  This is also why blizzard routinely does not take away anything you buy on the auction house even when they go hard after the people doing the duping.  Because you can not say, for sure, that the person that bought it knew it was a dupe.  The person might just think they got a lucky deal because someone made a mistake, like I did with my bracers.

However, when you exchange something hand to hand you have to think back to that old saying, "if it sounds too good to be true it probably is."  If bloods are selling for 400 gold each and someone is willing to sell you massive amounts, insanely massive amounts, for less than half of the current fair market value, it surely sounds too good to be true right?  Well, that is because it usually is. 

Those items blizzard will take away from you.  Just the way it took away the queens garnets from people in cataclysm.  When they were selling for 5K each on the auction house and you bought a stack of 20 for 20K you should have known better.  Those are the exact words a GM told my friend that bought them and had them removed, you should have known better. He lost his gems and his gold.

When exchanging things hand to hand there is no mistake like a listing mistake in the auction house.  That means there is no plausible deniability.  You can beg and plead all you want with a GM that removes the items and does not refund the gold, but as they say, you should have known better because "if it sounds too good to be true it probably is."

So now we are seeing magic rooster eggs and spectral tigers being duped in huge quantities and their prices are plummeting, so will you be buying one of them?  Maybe picking up a tiny the hatespark or some other out of print pet that is tradable and currently being duped?

I do not support duping and no one should do it, sooner or later you will get banned and your account will be permanently disabled, as it rightfully should be because you broke the rules of the game, but I would gladly take advantage of someone else doing it, as long as I can keep # 1 protected, #1 being me of course.

So would you buy something you know is a dupe?


  1. Let me provide the simple answers, which are akin to yours. If it was on the auction house, I would consider it fair game. If it was a direct trade, I would avoid it like the plague.

    1) Auction House - It is my, admittedly unsubstantiated, understanding from general game exposure and reading things over the years, that the auction house has functions in place to prevent the selling of duplicated items. This may not be true. It may be true and not full proof. Lets assume that it has no controls in place at all, the worst case scenario from a buyer's perspective and potentially the weakest position should Blizzard object. Your reasoning stands. People make mistakes all the time, hit tab at the wrong time and what was supposed to be 10,000 gold price was in actuality, 10 gold. Yes this did happen to me. I realized it immediately then went to cancel the auction to see it sold before I could click the button. Ooops. Mistakes do happen and I do not begrudge the purchaser for jumping at the mistake. The buyer has a case for plausible deniability.

    2) Direct Trade. I do not believe Blizzard's argument holds water. For instance, I can see someone return the game after being away for years and want to clear out some bag space and fund their new adventures in WoD. Oooh this Haunted Memento, lets just get rid of it "/2 Anyone want Haunted Memento for 100 gold?" I see this just as mistyping the auction house value. I could extend this rational to individual items like the mount. Someone made the gem mount in MoP and just wants to liquidate to get 20k to fund their Garrison building and didn't want to wait and haggle.

    Blizzard's argument, imho, begins to gain weight when you are dealing with volume. When people start moving volume of current expansion valuable items, that ought to send red flags. I think the age of the items matters as well, since it is reasonable to expect someone to be much more familiar with current expansion products, and reasonable to have older past expansion products be unknown to the buyer or seller.

    I think Blizzard doesn't want to parse the debate so closely, and like any corporation, makes a blanket policy to settle the matter and keeps trucking along with minimal cost-time investment to address the issue.

    1. Blizzard, it seems, does like to use blanket decisions. I agree with what you said that the "you should have known better" is not the greatest or always correct answer, but it seems to be the line blizzard chooses to walk.

      You are right however. Someone buying one of something "might" not get noticed, but buy 10 of those panther mounts in a face to face and you can be certain you will be caught.

  2. Nope. I even avoid things I'm only pretty sure are duped for two reasons. One, it's not worth the risk. Two, cheating defeats the point of playing a game. I don't personally see any difference between duping myself and getting a Jeweled Panther for 10k.

    1. I can understand that reasoning. I made my own jeweled panther back in mists when it was selling for less than the cost of materials on the AH. It was only a little less, but still less. I decided to make my own because it felt safer. However, it if were a lot less, I would have bought it. My standpoint is, even if I believe it is duped, as long as I buy it from the AH anyone had the option to buy it. So I just got a good deal. If blizzard did not want me buying it they could have fixed the crafting dupe that has been in the game for years. It is still in game. But do they do anything? No. It is not my job to police their game.

    2. Totally agree that Blizzard needs to improve this situation. As someone who made a million gold the fair way, I hate seeing dupers bark their mounts in trade.

    3. I made my millions the same way, earned it. Sucks when someone can go and dupe something and have more money than I do in a matter of minutes. Seems unfair.

  3. As you stated, I would trust the AH vs the one-to-one (back alley) deals. When the seller is after a fast buck, it makes me think that their account has been hacked and a gold farmer is simply trying to clear the account before the account owner logs back on again and see's their character standing their naked. The AH (IMHO) would be too slow for this. Even the short timer of 12hrs could be long enough for someone to cancel all the auctions.

    Personally, I've had items that were previously selling for $$$ gold, but after dozens of times reposting the darn thing, I started lowering the price until someone finally bought it. The situation with your bracers could be simply 'I've spent enough gold trying to sell this to pay for it outright.. Time for a fire sale.."

    As for 'dupeing' items, like found a bug and now can create items out of nothing. Dangerous game. Blizzard has banned entire guilds for doing things like this and if they can make a good example out of you...

    1. I've sold stuff on fire sale before myself just to make bag space. But I think the bracers were an error. Missed a 0 most likely. Fire sale is if something is selling for 40 gold a stack you sell it for 30, not 4. 4 is a mistake. At least that is how I saw the bracer thing.

      Blizzard will ban them, but not once in the history of the game has blizzard ever banned someone for buying the duped item. Only removed it.

      So no, never dupe. It is against the rules. But do not be afraid to buy something. The worst that could happen is you lose the item and your gold.

  4. In MoP, with on of the crafting leather daily items, I accidentally sold full stacks of them, instead individual leathers. And put the price as though I was selling them individually. They were bought within a few minutes (I think I noticed when I was done listing stuff on the AH, and I ran to the mailbox to pick up the items I had bought, which opened my bags...). Most reasonable players would have thought that those must have been duped items, as they were in fairly high demand at the time. So I think a lot of things that we think are dupes are actually idiots like me. :-P

    However, the completely arbitrary line I've decided not to cross, is I'm fine with buying items I suspect were duped, as long as I'm using them for crafting, not for reselling. For some reason I don't feel good making gold off of dupes, but I'm fine with having easier attained gear.

    Oddly enough, I don't generally care about server markets. I kind of like the idea of ruining everyone's gold making opportunities, as I think most people (myself included) sell items for ridiculous prices. So it's weird that I don't want to buy cheap duped items and resell them for profit... I have a very confusing moral system.

    1. I forgot to mention that. I too would never buy to resell something like that. I would only buy one for myself, or maybe as far as to give a gift to a friend. But I would not buy to resell. I do not want to make profit off of it.

  5. The only time I think about duping is when I see you post about it. I think it's because I rarely buy anything on the AH and I have trade channel shunted off to another tab that I never look at.

    1. If you don't follow the markets you would never notice it. I notice it because I am always looking for deals. I do not buy and resell, can't be bothered, hit gold cap a long time ago without being a AH goblin, easy enough to make gold otherwise, but I am always on the lookout for a good deal.

  6. I've probably bought a couple of different mounts that may have been duped either off the AH or from trade (e.g., Jeweled Onyx Panther, Crimson Deathcharger), but I'm only ever buying one of them and never reselling them.

    The AH is definitely the safer route though and I tend to ignore trade, so I haven't bought anything off trade in a very long time.

    I would never buy large quantities of stuff from trade chat, but I snag really cheap things off the AH all the time either to use or flip.

    1. I have never bought anything I suspected something of to resell, I am too much afraid to do that. I would not want to lose my account so I take no chances. Buying on the AH does not seem like a risk, but reselling could be. So I stay far away from that personally. However I have never heard of someone being banned for flipping items on the AH so it is probably perfectly fine.

  7. I would buy a duped item off the auction house because in that case I've covered my rear.

    I won't buy a duped item just doing a trade with someone because I have heard to many stories similar to your friends where they both loose out on the item and their gold.

    I personally think both are fair game because it is Blizzard that is refusing to either ban the people duping the items or to fix the bug that enables those people to dupe the item in the first place.

    The worst part about it is that Blizzard knows this kind of thing goes on and instead of doing the right thing, banning and fixing, they will instead screw over people like your friend.

    People with absolutely no recourse for banning, fixing, or getting their stuff back while the duping continues unabated.

    1. There was a bug I encountered at the beginning of cataclysm, reported it, and to my knowledge, it is still there.

      Makes me wonder if they leave it there until it becomes a problem hoping that it never will instead of just fixing it when it pops up before it becomes an issue.

      So I agree, blizzard themselves are in part to blame. For not handling the duper and not fixing the problems that make duping possible, even with years and years of the knowledge that it is there.