Jan 3, 2014

Between a Rock(star) and a hard place.

Parachuting down Mt Chillidog.


I’ve been playing a lot of Grand Theft Auto: Online lately, and I must say, it’s rather good, if flawed.  I even persisted through a stint in the Bad Sports lobby, which happened because of disk read errors, nothing to do with me, hence why I was given a reprieve, and left back into the general population.

It’s fun, in a “make your own fun” kinda way, the picture above was taken after challenging my friends to get buses up the top of Mount Chiliad, then parachuting down from the top.

Lately, it’s got considerably more fun, why?  Hackers giving out Billions of dollars to everyone.  Yes, I am a (virtual) Billionaire!

Ordinarily I frown upon any hacking, glitching or exploit abuse, anything that gives you an unfair advantage that wasn’t earned, but this is different

First, a bit of information:  There are 2 main forms of progression; RP, which is your level, and cold hard cash. RP comes relatively quickly, but cash is slow to gain unless you’re using this patches exploit of choice.  The fact of the matter is, you need to be grinding missions to make money in the game, at the time of writing, Coveted is where it’s at, but it’s still a measly $12,000 for less than 10 mins work, repetitive and boring work.

One day, I was randomly given $2,000,000,023 dollars, and the game suddenly became fun!  The grind disappeared, and I could play the game for enjoyment, rather than a sense of duty towards the grind.  I modded some cars for my mates, bought all the upgrades I’ve been tirelessly grinding for weeks towards, got some new cars, and I’m having a blast.

Unfortunately, Rockstar is seriously clamping down on this, hackers are getting shifted to the bad sport lobbies, or just plain old banned, people who received illicit funds will have their money, and possibly assets bought with the funds, removed.  This will be a very testing time for the game, there are those that want the “cheaters” punished, and those “cheaters” want to have fun without the very tedious grind.  What makes it more interesting is the fact Rockstar is doing the RMT thing with “Shark Cards” so they’re losing money over this, but I feel the hackers would never spend extra money on in game cash anyway, and the exchange rate is frankly terrible, for $20 you get enough for a mid range house/garage and maybe a half decent car, I guess that’s Rockstar’s way of showing the world that the creators of GTA are the masters of robbery.

I hope Rockstar doesn’t give up on the MMO genre, but they need to learn from their mistakes, and maybe the game will survive the cash purge.

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