We all know that RMT (Real Money Transactions) have taken off in various online games. That also brought in a few problems, such as “gold farming” and “black market” trading. Now someone has come up with a possible solution.
Mitch Davis, currently at Brash Entertainment, has formed a new company called Live Gamer. Its purpose is to provide a safe trading platform for virtual items. In any MMOG whose publisher signs up for the service. Among the companies that have already endorsed the program is Sony Online Entertainment, a name not unknown to many ;)
The main thing is that trading will be done in a controlled environment, with rules set by each publisher on how much and what kind of trading can be done. That’s to keep games balanced and people honest. Heh.
I don’t know how well that will work out. Much depends on how many publishers come on board. And how many players would prefer that controlled environment to “free trade” with no restrictions.
However, it is nice to see someone taking a positive approach to the matter, rather than the usual heavy-handed response from corporate when they don’t have “total control”.
Anyway, check out the article on Gamasutra and see what you think.