Staples post to server room
Perhaps this post is fruitless, another “there is a bot problem” post; however, after many hours of playing this great game, reading posts, watching videos, and being continuously disgusted by bots I feel a certain duty to offer something.
It is no secret anyone in the community, both player or developer, that this game is riddled with bots. Certainly other games have problems with bots, my experience from EVE Online and I’m sure others experience in other MMO’s are evidence enough that bots in LA are not a unique problem, yet comparatively the player in LA feels nearly helpless in combatting this problem. In EVE players could hunt bots down and farm the farmers as a form of content, while also exposing how pervasive the problem was. Indeed, that sort of system would not fit in to the style of game that LA is, but absent visible action by SG/AG, players are left helpless to sit near the Chaos Dungeon terminal and watch as “Zqyjklwnmvrt” and his endless compatriots stream by to further destroy the economy.
I know that SG/AG are seeking to punish gold buyers by putting their accounts into negative gold value, which is a good effort to help stave off the economic problems that botting causes, but from a simple eye-test it looks like the bots themselves have not been culled from the servers. Numerous posts on these forums or reddit have shown server queue times at off hours, Sywo did a great video detailing the irregular Steam charts that LA has compared to other online games. Evidently, the VPN change/enforcement has done very little to stave off the actual botters.
One simply has to go to Vern Castle to see bots streaming by, or while searching for the vendor on Atlas Island, bots would stream into the island for some quest that presumably gives them an easy source of gold. My brother and I enlisted the help of other Atlas-goers to sit and kill all the bots as they would spawn in, run out of the safe zone, die, and repeat. We did this for an hour or two, and while the effort was entirely unfruitful in helping remove this bot problem, it did offer a feeling of catharsis. It is truly frustrating, saddening, pick a word, to see the stream of bots in Vern, or even recently in T3 Boss Rush rooms with no player ability to combat this issue other than hit “report” which given the number of chat bots or chaos bots I have doubts about the veracity of the report system being effective.
I have no doubt that there are many players who, like me, stay in the little haven of Punika because bots are not as prevalent there. We can simply turn a blind eye to the problem and avoid the frustration one feels seeing bots stream by, knowing they are “beep beep booping” happily on their way to further affect the economy.
Solution: allow players to apply for a GM-type status where they are able to ban bots. I’m sure many who love this game would do it for no reward, no special title, no increased chance of a large gold bar from the Una’s tokens (please RNG). A system where players could apply for such a job could be implemented, naturally with certain parameters for entry and penalties for preventing abuse for rage-banning that Grudge 1, rainbow stat Sorc in your Oreha’s Well group, providing a feeling of agency combatting the bot problem for both that individual player and the community as a whole. Who needs a paid intern to sit around Vern and ban bots when there is certainly a ready group of players who would gladly do it?