Real Cash in a Virtual World
December 13, 2002 5:19 PM   Subscribe

Real cash in a virtual world - a little piece from New Scientist about a new type of massive multiplayer game where you convert real cash in to virtual, and then actually buy things you need to survive in that world.
posted by paladin (12 comments total)
"early glitches, like disappearing money"
sounds a bit too realistic for my taste.

i wonder if people would get into this, i know people bought and sold things over everquest and this introduces earning money from the game too... if youre good enough. i just hope they have some good security experts working for them...
posted by klik99 at 5:35 PM on December 13, 2002

Most interesting is that the combined value of everquest items makes the Everquest world the 77th most wealthy "nation" in the world.



Spend it on drugs or something, not fictional goods.

As for this new game....brilliant. Hopefully a joke. Probably for real.

posted by KettleBlack at 5:37 PM on December 13, 2002

Kind of reminds me of more perfect Pullman town. I am sure he would be very impressed at the thought of owning an entire world.
posted by thirteen at 6:08 PM on December 13, 2002

Little known fact: KettleBlack was the speechwriter for Martin Luther King.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 6:22 PM on December 13, 2002

I wonder if, in this virtual world, virtual mafias will surface. Sorry... still have The Sopranos on my mind.
posted by mychai at 6:58 PM on December 13, 2002

Everyone can just send their money to me, and I'll provide any virtual dealies that are needed.
posted by SweetJesus at 7:06 PM on December 13, 2002

I wonder if, in this virtual world, virtual mafias will surface.

"Five rough-looking men stepped out of a black sedan and burst into the Seoul PC café where Paek Jung Yul hangs out with Strong People Blood Pledge, his clan of online gamers. "Is the wizard here?" demanded one of the toughs, asking for the player who killed his character in an online game called Lineage. The "wizard" was there, alright, and he was feeling bold. He boasted that he had offed the gangman's virtual character just for the fun of it. Bad idea. The roughnecks dragged the 21-year-old into the urinal and pummeled him until he was covered with real-world bruises."

[Time Magazine, June 2001 - Full Article]
posted by Stuart_R at 7:42 PM on December 13, 2002

Plug: In my alter-ego self, I interviewed the PR folks from the Project Entropia team, and I swear one of them made a pass at me.
posted by thanotopsis at 12:04 AM on December 14, 2002

This concept would only work if you could convert the online goods back into cash in a reliable manner. Then an interesting economy could develop within the gameworld. Otherwise it's just survival of whoever is rich/desperate enough to buy the most expensive Sword of +4 Lonely.
posted by Spacelegoman at 12:32 AM on December 14, 2002

Habbo Hotel has already done this - buy designer furniture with your real cash for your little pixel paradise. Or am I missing an important difference?
posted by meech at 5:12 AM on December 14, 2002

My roommate is playing this game as a cute female character, trying to score as much gear and cash as possible from men. His goal is to play the game without ever paying a dime. It's working so far... though I don't really want to know the details of what he does to get stuff :P
posted by Foosnark at 11:26 AM on December 14, 2002

Agreed, Spacelegoman. When I first read this post, I thought it was about being able to play a game where your virtual money becomes cash, and not vice versa (as noted, this is pretty common, at least unofficially). I guess it wouldn't be practical, though, eh? Free money!
posted by Big Fat Tycoon at 6:06 PM on December 14, 2002

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