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Starym

Big Boosting Community Owner, 20,000$ Per Month Trader Answers Many Questions

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After the recent changes Blizzard made to the way boost selling is allowed to work, an owner of one of the big boosting communities has come out and done an "ask me anything" session on r/wow, going into a lot of the details of how all this worked before the recent changes.

Many of the users in the thread complained that this was even allowed to be posted and was given attention, as the WoW community generally isn't a big fan of these services (especially the real money ones), and pretty much all of the booster's replies in the AMA were heavily downvoted. But it is a fascinating look inside the operations of these types of organizations, and in my own opinion knowing more about a subject, even if it is a hated one, is always better, so that's why we're covering it as well.

The reddit moderators did confirm WOWRetailBooster was indeed who they say they are and here are some of the highlights from the AMA:

  • Hi there,
    So i'll try break this into little questions.
    Why are you really here doing this?

    1. It's rare we ever had the opportunity to discuss with the playerbase as strategies and procedure were actively in play. We're not here to poop on our own party. Now the market is on a full reset and a new strategy will take precedence, that isn't a limiting factor.
    2. I think that whilst Blizzard had the right intentions, they once again completely messed up these changes. They did wrong by a huge playerbase and i relish the opportunity to highlight htat.
    3. This 'we don't want you approach' from the casual playerbase definitely grinds my teeth a little... and i think it's a lot of lack of understanding. You hate boosting? Fine. But this update doesn't achieve what you want and eradicate boosting... it makes the key issues worse. You still get the exact same problems, except now a huge playerbase has been alienated too.

    Even if real money boosting ceases to exist, gold selling like in any game... will be here to stay. I would rather see real money boosting broken down then gold boosting. Whilst it would slice my income severely, it wouldn't destroy a huge part of the game i love.

    World of Warcraft is two games... it is a open world RPG experience and it is a competitive MMO. I think alot of the more casual players should sympathize more with the competitive playerbase that has built their playstyle around using boosting to fill long and harsh content droughts by creating their own challenging gameplay experiences.

  • I personally dislike arena and rated battleground boosting... whilst i must admit i have sold in this area in the past... it's not something i actively deal with. Most PVP boosting comes from the high end PVPers who can represent themselves.

    My role is moreso working with the wider PVE community for keystones, raiding, ect.

    I do think boosting in PVP is disruptive, i think there are blatant issues of wintrading at the higher level to... but i don't see Blizzard taking a stance against it any time soon. In my opinion, a good first step would be to make MMR Dropping a TOS offence (boosters forfeit matches to lower their MMR for easier boost games).

  • The question implies that real money trading has come to an end in World of Warcraft. This is very much not the case, if anything, the recent surges have generated a new burst of life to the market.

    I'll continue to be working with World of Warcraft. Whilst alot of websites have stretched into other genres, i've never done anything outside of the game i love... and likely never will.

  • One of the things i think most people would find suprising is that the same RMT is just as deep rooted into high progression guilds as it is communities.
    • I don't pass judgement on it being positive or negative. I think it is a natural market generated via demand. And i don't think it will go anywhere. But i do think it highlights the lack of real utility for the recent changes.
       
  • Working on this industry is no piece of cake. Adjusting to international timezones, juggling boosters, customers and support with often very limited manpower. It's a lot of work hours. All about the grind
     
  • So in my case, yes i have a registered business and taxes are handled via outsourced accounting from a professional company. Although.... a lot of individuals in the market definitely evade taxes. Most do this by utilising cryptocurrency or holding cash in e-wallets.
    For example.... when you visit these RMT prevalent forums... from my perspective, i find it incredibly frustrating attempting to do business with the individuals there considering 90% of buyers or sellers presenting themselves as professionals don't actually have bank accounts.
    On a separate tied note, even these legitimate shops can often baffle me at times with their blatantly illegal and unenforceable contracts and their lack of understanding for labor laws.
  • DJ_Marxman: Blizzard already provides an insane amount of gear catch-up. It's absolutely ludicrous to say you're helping anyone with catching up, considering how easy it is to get to an acceptable gear level in the modern game. You can be ready for M+10s or more in literally a day.
    WOWRetailBooster: I can't speak for the overall playerbase but no booster level player wants to pug Mythic +10s with casual players. That sounds painful. They want to be gear optimised and parsing (domination shard lacking catchup doesn't help here).
    DJ_Marxman: Players looking to get a dopamine rush should play the fucking game. Like, that's it. Play the game, earn shit yourself. I cannot comprehend anyone getting a rush out of buying their way to victory. That's pathetic.
    WOWRetailBooster: In terms of players purchasing, i think like any game there are those certain buyers who do purchase because they just cant achieve it themselves. I don't think that causes any harm to anyone else and each to their own (although i understand the arguements agianst it)
    DJ_Marxman: No one is improving by buying boosts. At all.
    WOWRetailBooster: I beg to differ, drastically. Infact a number of boosting options are tailored specifically around coaching.

  • If real money trading (and now boosting communities) weren't in place, the market would simply revolve around wow token purchases leading to trade chat and public forum purchases.

    History has taught that these provide a lower quality buyer experience, hence buyers have built connections with these boost-for-cash websites and stores.

    Infact, real money trading existed for many years without complaint or issue. The majority of player concern is built around the trade chat spam, which is a casualty of increasing competition in the gold boosting market (something that continues to exist).

  • My arguement is that we aren't doing a terrible thing. We've observed and participated in a flawed and unregulated system riddled with scams and deception, and introduced a more professional and protected structure that consumers can opt into.

  • So this varies player to player... but i personally have been banned once... bizarrely... for something completely unrelated to real money trading. It took about 5 live chats (rerolling customer support agent) and eventually i had a callback and the matter was resolved.

    I have never experienced a ban or issue for any real money trading activity.

    Interestingly, i know of a lot of people in the market whom had no intent to RMT but were banned for activities which they considered unjustified (being banned by association from completing a trade with someone), and this lead them to 'well, may aswell actually do it then'.

    A lot of large gold stockpilers share the opinion that Blizzard will stretch and abuse the rules to ban accounts with large amounts of gold (reduce circulating supply). How to protect your gold? Convert it to cash.

There is a LOT more to go over if you're at all interested in the topic, which you can also check out below:

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    One thing is true and that is that boosting communities are a much more secure environment to get boosts than trade and local guilds will ever be. Those sites live and die by reviews and it's vastly easier to make a review anonymously than to stalk trade so you can alert people that this local booster scammed them.

    Boosts have been around to some extent since Vanilla so anyone who thinks they are going away is deluded.

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    Personally, I don't think boosting by itself is the problem. It is "normally" the boosted players who fail to perform and "cause troubles" that are the problem. They AFFECT other players.
    If boosted players can take the effort to understand their class mechanics and boss mechanics, I am fine with that. If let's say, I am a competent druid on an Asian server and I want to play a druid on a US server for IRL reasons, boosting can work for me. 

    Someone wants to get an achievement/gear/boss kill? Fine, it doesn't affect me.
    Someone boasting a high rating/achievement but fails to perform basic mechanics in my PUG mythic raid? NOW THAT'S A PITA.
    Can boosting communities promise that? They CAN'T.

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    So what we need are boot-camps for classes who aren't monks, then. 

    Note: I played a bleeding-edge-fixed-NOW capable druid resto in Wrath.  What I'm not good at is tank.   I tried those "you get to practice" monk quests.  They only train speed-clicking or reactive timing for a single power.   That's... not bossfight representative, at all.

    So what we need are a series of what are the best fights to Learn One's Way Through.  And, this might be different per class or even aspect of using the class skill for it.

    (edit to add) In short, I can agree with a bunch of aspects:

    • if someone just wants to hit 60, meh, buy it off blizz.  

      "bye Susan!" used to be our "local fave" gold farmer on one realm in ye olden daye & now you can just buy a wow-token and have gold.  THIS IS COOL well, sort of, I mean, my husband cranked his way through the auction house to rank up his gold to buy The Tundra Mammoth before mounts were account-wide, and used to get given a fat ration about whether he was a gold farmer.  Hardly.  Unless people getting repairs off a mammoth were gonna be getting him a kickback, and I just don't see Blizz bothering to code that in.

      Not weeping here for loss of direct gp farming.
       
    • someone wants to buy an achieve, oboy, as long as it doesn't bug me, should I care?
      oh
      but there's this.
       
    • if they try to use that to claim "the immortal" or some similar power-proof Achieve didn't let anyone die in a hard fight and they don't have the mad skills YO that this implies - they LIED - when they claimed they were raid ready.   Not because the booster was raid ready, but because they claimed that trait meant they were ready to be carried through a raid when we trust our lives to them.  THAT'S NOT COOL.  They wanted their name to rhyme or something, okay whatev.  But it's not the booster's fault that some given customer is This Model Of //// problem in the making ////.

      and I suppose it's not even true, of the customers who are buying this one's coaching service - if it works.

      But if we trust the achieve system as our only measure that they've done a job before, we aren't hiring the player, we're hiring their stat block, and this is its own type of problem.

    (edited 2nd time to add) 
    oops, sorry not so short.

    TL;DR players who lie and claim their achieve is their own when it was a boost and they've lost or never had the mad skills - those are Not Good Raiders.   

     

    Edited by SpilledStars
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    This is a horrible PR attempt and is basically a long winded "stop making me hurt you" letter.

    If you love the game, stop doing this garbage. If you think PVP boosting is bad, you're the problem not Blizzard. Blaming other people's inability to protect themselves from your attacks doesn't remove the fact that you attacked them. You don't get to rob banks because the bank doesn't have the best security. You're still a bank robber.

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    Boosters, and even more so, those who buy boosts, hinders the game for others when they join groups that require skill, which they do not possess - as it is bought.

    Edited by Znifler
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    RMT Carries have just gotten a huge boost in traffic. A friend does carries for a major site and said they are adding more runs everyday because they cant get everyone in. He said that in weeks before the community bans, he was lucky to get 1-2 carries a day. Now hes doing them 5-7 a day. So Blizzards plan had a negative side too.

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    4 hours ago, Krimzin said:

    RMT Carries have just gotten a huge boost in traffic. A friend does carries for a major site and said they are adding more runs everyday because they cant get everyone in. He said that in weeks before the community bans, he was lucky to get 1-2 carries a day. Now hes doing them 5-7 a day. So Blizzards plan had a negative side too.

    The thing is, those can easily lead to a permaban if you get caught. So the risk is more substantial.

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    1 hour ago, Nym85 said:

    The thing is, those can easily lead to a permaban if you get caught. So the risk is more substantial.

    How so. How can they without a doubt prove you paid RL Cash to do it? If it isnt talked about in game then there is no definitive proof of anything. They might be able to say these players have run a crazy amount of raids for no loot(the carriers) but the people being carried are guilty of nothing that is provable.

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    The amount of saltyass "top-skill" players that refuse to see the good sides boosting has, munching over a single beaten argument is hillarious.

    In any case, it never goes away, so you either stay salty 24/7, or put on your big boy pants and accept it. Props to the guy for trying.

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    I've never given a hoot about the act of boosting, but the channel spam and LFG system clogging can go straight to hell.

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