Diablo’s Gold Exploit Now Fixed
We've reported before on Diablo 3's infamous auction house and the recent 1.0.8 update patch for the game. This recent patch unfortunately brought a gold duplication exploit with it and so the auction house has had to close its doors temporarily. With the auction house using real money one can understand why.
Now the bug has been fixed and the auction house has been reopened. Blizzard have looked at the individual accounts of players that exploited the bug, have suspended or banned these players, have recovered the gold and now donated it to charity. That's the short version. Production Director John Hight gave the long version in a recent battle.net forum post.
In the post Hight explains that they considered rolling back the servers after the exploit was brought to their attention. Indeed, many players suggested they do just this. Hight explains in the post why they did not do this. From the forum:
"The vast majority of players did not participate in the exploit and we didn't like the idea of punishing them for the bad behavior of a few people. A rollback would mean bringing the servers down for a lengthy period and a loss of all progression since 1.0.8 was released. Many players made significant accomplishments in the game that required time and dedication, and we felt it was worth the work involved to try to preserve these efforts and go after the exploiters instead.
With this in mind, we elected not to roll back the servers in The Americas and are instead working to remove duplicated gold from the economy through targeted audits and account actions (as indicated above) without taking away progress that our players rightfully earned.
As of this this [sic] post, we have already recaptured more than 85% of the excess gold from the accounts involved, and over the days ahead we will continue to pore over our audit data to reclaim as much duplicate currency as possible. We've also done a full audit of our code to help make sure that something like this doesn't happen again."
As for players that didn't exploit the gold bug but still conducted transactions during what has now become known as 'Gold-gate', Blizzard assures that "you will get to keep your items and gold, as well as any money you received from sales on the real-money Auction House". Yay!
Whilst a roll back may've been the simpler solution to use, I'm glad Blizzard didn't go with this option and quite like how they've handled this particular situation; it rarely makes sense to punish everyone because of the actions of the few after all. But what do you think? Let us know in the comments below.