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10.19.2011 Our policy on selling digital cards


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26 October 2011 - 03:56 PM

#41

jenbamo

    Rookie Trainer

  • jenbamo
While I understand everyone's frustrations here, I feel the need to play the "devil's advocate" as it were.





Virtual goods are always the property of the company that creates them. In buying a pack you receive a FREE code card which gives you the option to exchange the code for a virtual pack. That does not mean you own said pack, you just are in possession of the virtual item. Purchasing a real pack and trading in the code for a virtual pack is like paying a subscription. In many online games, you pay a subscription fee to play. Those games have written into their TOS the fact that you do not own the virtual items and as such cannot sell them.





Let me take an example from an online game I played for several years: Ultima Online. Here's a quote from their TOS:





"You acknowledge and agree that all characters created, and items acquired and developed as a result of game play are part of the Software and Service and are the sole property of EA.com."





Currently, the PTCGO is free to play. The Pokemon company owns the service and therefore owns the rights to all software and data contained in it. If they want to disallow sales of virtual cards, it is entirely within their rights to do so.





Personally,I think it would be more beneficial to push them to make the online trading part of the game more user friendly than it is to complain that they won't allow you to make a profit on their property. If the online trading was better and actually worked (i.e. the "binders" and the search engine), it would be easier for online players to acquire the cards they need.

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26 October 2011 - 03:57 PM

#42

DOtheDREW730

    Rookie Trainer

  • DOtheDREW730
As mentioned above, selling virtual cards will always happen to some extent and by not embracing this fact Pokemon has created a black market. So instead of allowing people to buy and sell cards off of reputable merchant sites like Ebay, you are forcing them to engage in underhanded deals where there is certainly no buyer protection. The outlined scenario where a player was ripped off by a bounced payment was laughable and nonexistent in a world of Paypal accounts.



I can assure you that me and most other players would prefer to deal with Ebay or other reputable vendors when searching for the cards we need to complete decks. As was mentioned previously, it is incredibly frustrating to try and trade for the one or two cards a person needs to complete their deck. So frustrating perhaps that a user would give up the PTCGO entirely. On the other hand, if it was allowed, that person could easily locate and buy the cards they need from others. Ultimately I feel that Pokemon is shooting themselves in the foot and it will really hurt the long term growth of this exciting opportunity.



Furthermore, the gems as described will never catch on as a currency system in the PTCGO. Currency needs something backing it in order to be effective and simply put, the value of cosmetic gear is minimal. Especially when compared to the current booster system already in a effect. I know I would rather trade for a booster that can potentially be turned into 10 cards over a gem that can be turned into ...a hat.



Please change this policy for the good of the PTCGO.

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26 October 2011 - 04:15 PM

#43

Reflexisz

    Rookie Trainer

  • Reflexisz

While I understand everyone's frustrations here, I feel the need to play the "devil's advocate" as it were.





Virtual goods are always the property of the company that creates them. In buying a pack you receive a FREE code card which gives you the option to exchange the code for a virtual pack. That does not mean you own said pack, you just are in possession of the virtual item. Purchasing a real pack and trading in the code for a virtual pack is like paying a subscription. In many online games, you pay a subscription fee to play. Those games have written into their TOS the fact that you do not own the virtual items and as such cannot sell them.





Let me take an example from an online game I played for several years: Ultima Online. Here's a quote from their TOS:





"You acknowledge and agree that all characters created, and items acquired and developed as a result of game play are part of the Software and Service and are the sole property of EA.com."





Currently, the PTCGO is free to play. The Pokemon company owns the service and therefore owns the rights to all software and data contained in it. If they want to disallow sales of virtual cards, it is entirely within their rights to do so.





Personally,I think it would be more beneficial to push them to make the online trading part of the game more user friendly than it is to complain that they won't allow you to make a profit on their property. If the online trading was better and actually worked (i.e. the "binders" and the search engine), it would be easier for online players to acquire the cards they need.


Well answer me this, MTGO is similar in many ways to Pokemon online, however they don't restrict people from buying cards from one another, why would pokemon care, if they could fix their trading system in a way so that no one is scammed than i don't see the problem at all, even if they can't paypal and ebay BOTH have ways they will refund you, no one would go onto ebay or paypal knowing once they make a transaction if they don't get their product they're out of luck. People using those 3rd party websites have security once an item is bought or you make a money transfer via paypal. Sure pokemon can claim the cards as their virtual property, but if they don't legalize selling cards the game can and will be hindered

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26 October 2011 - 04:40 PM

#44

rulemaster

    Rookie Trainer

  • rulemaster
What inevitably ends up happening is that the most-wanted cards aren't going to be traded for junk. Sometimes cash is the better option for the seller and the buyer. You are going to have to allow some selling of cards...its not good business to ban anyone who wants to build a decent deck by buying singles. Sure, you're going to have a few idiots out there. Ebay deals with them on a daily basis. But thats why things like leaving feedback for a good trader and seller are good...they separate the good, honest people from the losers.

Blizzard is building an online trading/selling store IN TO diablo 3 just for this sort of thing...and guess what? they take a selling fee for every transaction to offset any losses by fraud.

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26 October 2011 - 05:24 PM

#45

adamcapriola

    Rookie Trainer

  • adamcapriola

Blizzard is building an online trading/selling store IN TO diablo 3 just for this sort of thing...and guess what? they take a selling fee for every transaction to offset any losses by fraud.


That seems like the best solution - why not create a marketplace here for people to buy/sell/trade as they want? Nobody would ever get gypped and Pokemon could make money off transaction fees. Win-win.

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26 October 2011 - 05:26 PM

#46

jenbamo

    Rookie Trainer

  • jenbamo
[quote name=Reflexisz]

[/quote]

Well answer me this, MTGO is similar in many ways to Pokemon online, however they don't restrict people from buying cards from one another, why would pokemon care, if they could fix their trading system in a way so that no one is scammed than i don't see the problem at all, even if they can't paypal and ebay BOTH have ways they will refund you, no one would go onto ebay or paypal knowing once they make a transaction if they don't get their product they're out of luck. People using those 3rd party websites have security once an item is bought or you make a money transfer via paypal. Sure pokemon can claim the cards as their virtual property, but if they don't legalize selling cards the game can and will be hindered

[/quote]

According to this:

13.3 Ineligible Items. PayPal Purchase Protection only applies to PayPal payments for certain tangible, physical goods. Payments for the following are not eligible for reimbursement under PayPal Purchase Protection:

•Intangible items, including Digital Goods



You can't actually expect buyer protection for digital goods. And eBay doesn't protect digital goods either; as far as I could see, their policy is to remove auctions for virtual goods when found. Other than that, you can claim that the game will be hindered all you want, but Pokemon owns the rights to all of their property, tangible and intangible, and as such has the right to disallow sales of their virtual cards.

I can't speak for MTGO because I've never played that game, virtual or otherwise, but just because they do it doesn't mean that Pokemon has to necessarily follow suit. As I see it, Pokemon will most likely institute buying of single cards within their PTCGO and so the game will really not be hindered but the banning of virtual cards sales.

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26 October 2011 - 05:28 PM

#47

Rufo2000

    Novice Trainer

  • Rufo2000
What then are we to do with tokens? I have over 500. Can I get a pack? How a about a Yamega?

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26 October 2011 - 05:31 PM

#48

drummerholt1234

    Rookie Trainer

  • drummerholt1234

Players that pay money for Trading Card Game cards should be entitled to trade their cards in any manner they please - whether that is for other cards, cash, or a pet kangaroo. No one can tell you how to trade your real Pokemon cards and no one should tell you how you can trade your online cards, either. You paid money for cards that are marketed as trading cards. Under these current terms, a player will be suspended from PTCGO for offering to trade his Virtual Emboar for his friend's real card. How absurd!



Bottom-line: This policy needs to be changed.


If TPCi is listening, this counter-productive, restrictive policy will be lifted when the TCGO ends its beta phase. If not, the game's growth will forever be stunted.



I look forward to the day.




Ness is totally right... it is a joke what pokemon is doing...

Magic allows players to buy and trade as they see fit... and how are they doing pretty well I would say.



Don't to get scamed then well go to a trusted person in the community and dont make shady deals with people you dont know.



Also GEMS seem to be a joke why not focus on making a better game community then on what your avatar looks like... this is a card game not a fashion show...

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26 October 2011 - 05:58 PM

#49

Vatenkeist

    Rookie Trainer

  • Vatenkeist
for everyone pitching blizzard vs gold selling blizzard just added means to buy gold through them in a round about process. and as well with diablo 3 coming out having a cash auction system controlled by blizzard to prevent shady site deals.



mtgo has a defacto currency, tix which could be equated to gems. If you make tournaments that need gems to enter then gems are atleast interesting to people who aren't looking for avatar stuff. (mtgo does that as a reference).

Pokemon needs to allow one of the 3.

1) Allow selling of closed packs on second market sites. Not codes, but Packs.[meaning you can still trade singles for packs and have a way to cash out]

2) allow gems to be sold in the same manner and make them used for in game actions and such [Same as above it's just a way to get money back]

3) Just allow singles to be sold. [everybody happy]



And I disagree with the stance against selling cards. It brings in more people who look at from that avenue. I personally had been stocking up on everything to move stuff at key times of the year, but if I got infamous for doing that I could expect action against my account which would be unpleasant.



Bottomline trying to "protect" people from being scammed seems like that is a very SMALL number of people in this day age. Certainly alot less than the number of people who would benefit and interact with being able to sell virtual singles... I'm just saying go with the bigger crowd here.

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26 October 2011 - 06:22 PM

#50

dar911

    Rookie Trainer

  • dar911
How about if we are allowed to exchange the gems with "Digital Pack Booster" or "Regular Pack Booster" or "Promo Cards"?

That way someone with lots of gems and doesn't need any more "digital" stuff can actually spend it on Regular Packs and get something back in return. They can sell the packs or open the packs and sell the singles.

Just my 2 cents.

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26 October 2011 - 06:30 PM

#51

Vatenkeist

    Rookie Trainer

  • Vatenkeist
that's what WOTC does, but it seems counter intuitive to do that when they have codes in the pack already and they would compete each other in value.

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26 October 2011 - 06:37 PM

#52

JasonKlaczynski

    Rookie Trainer

  • JasonKlaczynski
If your online Pokemon cards can never be turned into something of real value, PTCGO will fail to grow the game as we hoped. We all know there are third-party programs that people play Pokemon for free on. In order to play PTCGO instead, you need to spend some money. In order to get those people to spend money, there needs to be some incentive. If you think that incentive is going to be the fact that you can have your own avatar that you decorate with hats, you're out of your mind.



The suggested solutions? Gems! People can buy gems and then trade gems for cards, right? Oh, but wait, gems only buy nonsense avatar items. So no one wants gems. But wait! Let's assume there's more to gems. Let's say gems can be used to enter tournaments! Ah, finally, it makes sense! If you can enter online tournaments with gems, then people will want gems, right? But wait...what do we win in tournaments? More gems? More virtual cards? You start to realize, Wait, no matter what I do on PTCGO, there is no way to earn anything valuable! And just like that, you realize Wow, this is a waste of money!



So with that, I'll close with the same sentence I opened with: If your online Pokemon cards can never be turned into something of real value, PTCGO will fail to grow the game.



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26 October 2011 - 07:36 PM

#53

jenbamo

    Rookie Trainer

  • jenbamo

If your online Pokemon cards can never be turned into something of real value, PTCGO will fail to grow the game as we hoped. We all know there are third-party programs that people play Pokemon for free on. In order to play PTCGO instead, you need to spend some money. In order to get those people to spend money, there needs to be some incentive. If you think that incentive is going to be the fact that you can have your own avatar that you decorate with hats, you're out of your mind.



The suggested solutions? Gems! People can buy gems and then trade gems for cards, right? Oh, but wait, gems only buy nonsense avatar items. So no one wants gems. But wait! Let's assume there's more to gems. Let's say gems can be used to enter tournaments! Ah, finally, it makes sense! If you can enter online tournaments with gems, then people will want gems, right? But wait...what do we win in tournaments? More gems? More virtual cards? You start to realize, Wait, no matter what I do on PTCGO, there is no way to earn anything valuable! And just like that, you realize Wow, this is a waste of money!



So with that, I'll close with the same sentence I opened with: If your online Pokemon cards can never be turned into something of real value, PTCGO will fail to grow the game.






Seems to me that the initial idea behind the online game was so people can play against others that they wouldn't normally have a chance to play against, not so players can make money by selling cards. Yes there are other programs that you can use to play against people but there are a few drawbacks:

1- you have to be in touch with other people to be able to find others to play against

2- you have to trust other people to play by the rules

The PTCGO gives all players the option to build decks and play against people around the world knowing that the program will make sure all the rules are followed. It is a great option for players who don't have others to playtest against or don't have alot of players at their local league (or who have no local league).

Its a joke to me that people keep saying "there needs to be incentive". You pay for the packs to get the actual physical cards. Do you people all only play the card game to make money?

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26 October 2011 - 07:37 PM

#54

truKeffect

    Rookie Trainer

  • truKeffect
There needs to be a secondary market somehow. I know of some other "avatar" sites that also don't allow selling of there digital items on ebay etc. But they do have a marketplace of there own on there site with there own currency system. Thats the only solution to this problem.

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26 October 2011 - 10:02 PM

#55

Blarger

    Rookie Trainer

  • Blarger
Well, I’d like to start by saying that I’m nowhere near as good of a player as some of the names that have posted before me. Fulop, Ness, even Mr. Silver are all better players than I. But if nothing else, I still want to have my opinion heard.

My name on most other pokemon sites is Cabd, if you go on 6P or the Gym, you’ll probably recognize me. I’ve been playing TCGO since the closed beta period, quite enjoying myself, and doing my best to encourage people I knew to join too, even going as far as giving out extra beta codes to younger players that I knew had no way to get one. (There’s no game stores here, only target and wal-mart) Seeing the efforts of Pooka and several others, I began recording matches I played online, saving each match, including my commentary, and uploading them to youtube, while also live streaming each match. Already, having a visual record of matches has helped to identify misplays and to show players who are still “learning the ropes” about a deck observe how to use it.

As of most recent count, I’ve redeemed about 350 to 375 codes. Some of those are from boosters I bought physically, others are from buying codes online, and some were gifts from other people, such as Rogue_Archetype’s Pokegym guru contest.

To be entirely honest, I figured this would happen. Pokemon USA has to serve their masters in Japan. Japan does not like the idea of selling codes and singles via a secondary market like this. I note that most of the above examples other players of posted about are US or European companies. The problem we are currently facing is that Japanese mentality about digital single sales and the player base mentality about digital single sales are at odds.

We can protest all we’d like, in fact, every single person who has even read this thread could leave right now, and Japan would probably still be okay with it. To them, it’s “kids kids kids” and “forget the adults, get more kids in their place.”

Sadly, there’s not much we can do. Our best bet is to continue to argue with logic, class, and skill for our side of the argument. After all, if recent examples in the physical TCG world are any indication, TPCI does listen when they can.

In a world where I was in charge of figuring out the solution to this problem, here’s what I’d implement:

• Gems cost $1 USD (or equivalent currency)

• A single booster credit costs 3 Gems (so $3)

• Gem rewards for winning tournaments

• A “Gem Store” (more on this below)

A Gem store would allow people to order physical rewards, just like the My Nintendo Rewards program, which rewards players for registering games and consoles. The gem cost of the items would be placed above market value, so an item that would cost 5 dollars in real life might cost 8 Gems. That way, if one really wants the item, they can buy it with gems at above market value. Or, they can try to win it via tournament wins. Make items costing a lot of gems, maybe things such as Fancy Deck Sleeves, Playmats, or even Game Cartridges for lots and lots of gems. This provides your “Way out of the closed loop” while also rewarding players for playing and not just selling.

But of course, I’m not in charge, and that’s purely a suggestion. But tying the TCGO to the Player Rewards system would be a win-win in my opinion.

~Zackary “Cabd” Ayello



<div id="swiffout"> </div>


Cabd on 6P and Pokegym
AKA "The Yanmega Guy"
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27 October 2011 - 06:56 AM

#56

Vibrato

    Rookie Trainer

  • Vibrato

If your online Pokemon cards can never be turned into something of real value, PTCGO will fail to grow the game as we hoped. We all know there are third-party programs that people play Pokemon for free on. In order to play PTCGO instead, you need to spend some money. In order to get those people to spend money, there needs to be some incentive. If you think that incentive is going to be the fact that you can have your own avatar that you decorate with hats, you're out of your mind.



The suggested solutions? Gems! People can buy gems and then trade gems for cards, right? Oh, but wait, gems only buy nonsense avatar items. So no one wants gems. But wait! Let's assume there's more to gems. Let's say gems can be used to enter tournaments! Ah, finally, it makes sense! If you can enter online tournaments with gems, then people will want gems, right? But wait...what do we win in tournaments? More gems? More virtual cards? You start to realize, Wait, no matter what I do on PTCGO, there is no way to earn anything valuable! And just like that, you realize Wow, this is a waste of money!



So with that, I'll close with the same sentence I opened with: If your online Pokemon cards can never be turned into something of real value, PTCGO will fail to grow the game.






<strike>There is no end! </strike>Well actually there sadly is. I'm under the impression the gems will cause the tcgo's death. Let freedom ring!

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27 October 2011 - 07:28 AM

#57

bigghaz01

    Rookie Trainer

  • bigghaz01
I paid money for these codes and PTCGO is going to tell me how I'm allowed to trade my cards? That's very upsetting. What's even more disappointing is that allowing money to change hands between players is what helps grow and promote the game. It sparks interest in games when cards are actually worth something. If cards can't be sold for money, how long do you think people are going to want to play PTCGO? It will just became a stale, boring game that people lose interest in.

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27 October 2011 - 03:15 PM

#58

dec0y

    Rookie Trainer

  • dec0y

If cards can't be sold for money, how long do you think people are going to want to play PTCGO?


While I understand the frustration here I just feel like I need to be a voice of reason here...

There is no reason to make a digital card worth anything more than a fun time. Unlike your real cards, which you can protect in sleeves and cases, digital cards are bound to be erased. What happens in a few years when there becomes a new incentive to trading the real deal rather than the online stuff? Then this game will fade away and all that money you invested into those fake cards will be gone.

There's really no reason to put so much of your money and emotions into this online game. I understand the frustration of thinking, "Cool! I can finally play this game with other people!" and then you find that it's not that easy. But sometimes in life you have to let the man in charge (Nintendo) have the final say.

If you don't like it, just move on with your life and learn from the experience.

I still believe this game will be fun with the gems because there's also no good reason to believe that all gems will be good for is avatar items (especially considering nobody can see more of your avatar than from the belly button up). If gems aren't for more than that then you should probably take that as a sign that Pokemon isn't taking this game seriously, and you shouldn't either...

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27 October 2011 - 04:10 PM

#59

Flavor

    Rookie Trainer

  • Flavor
I came to the party late, and I only meant to read people's reactions. I have mostly stayed away from the online game, because I have no interest in spending my time trading to build a deck. Even the proposed gem system seems like an unnecessary level of abstraction to me. I could pay money for gems which I could trade for cards? No, I don't want to trade.

.

I want to play. In real life, when I want to play, I need to build a competitive deck. To do that, I do not buy packs and hope that the random cards I receive will fit into my desired deck. I buy singles from people who already opened the random packs. Why can I not do this with the online game? As it stands now, the online game is a waste of my time.

<sub>.</sub>

My main reason for posting, though, is to address this piece of Prof_Snow's initial post here.

[quote name=Prof_Snow]

.

Is this really contained in the same post that's explaining why Pokemon is disallowing outside sales? If it's all at the user's own risk, then why are you stopping them? If I, as a user, want to take the risk of buying cards, then let me take the risk. If I, as a user, want to take the risk of selling cards, then let me take the risk.

.

What if I had bought pack for the sole purpose of obtaining online codes. Then, I traded my virtual packs for the cards I needed to build my virtual deck. Then, there was a DB wipe. How is that better than if I had saved my time and effort and just bought virtual singles?

.

I'll tell you how it's better. It's better for Pokemon to cover their a__. In the case of using codes, they can always revert to giving me my initial investment (codes) back and claim that they provided the user with what the user paid for. Forget about all the time spent trading for singles. They never claimed that your time was worth anything to them. They only claimed your money was worth something.

.

They aren't protecting the users, as they claim. They are protecting themselves. It's not a bad move to protect themselves, but they shouldn't hide behind the veil of protecting users.

.

Prof_Snow's claim is that, since it's a beta, people should be wary about investing their money and time into obtaining and selling singles. That makes sense. So, why not advertise that as the reason for prohibiting online sales? If this is a valid point, then after the beta version is done, then the stable version of the game would allow for outside sales/purchases of virtual cards, right? Well, sadly, that seems to not be the case.

.

Please don't hide behind the idea of protecting the users when the company is what is being protected. Please don't hide behind the idea of protecting the users while also saying that these things are at the user's own risk.

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27 October 2011 - 04:18 PM

#60

Nessie123

    Rookie Trainer

  • Nessie123
I think some people are missing the big picture here. Pokemon's goal should not be to let eBay sellers make a quick buck. I fail to see how that would grow the game. Yes, I agree that using gems to purchase avatar accessories isn't a good idea unless this game is being geared towards kids 7 and under. However, accessories weren't the only thing mentioned in the original post which you can purchase with gems. Cards were also mentioned. Ultimately, Pokemon's goal should be

  • to allow gems to purchase cards and entry into tournaments. The tournaments should have real-life prizes that can either be shipped to players, or maybe boost your rating for a Worlds invite. That would ensure gems have real value.
The incentives so far for playing PTCGO rather than the other third party programs are:

  • it's prettier - You can actually zoom in on a card to see its stats.
  • It's impossible to break the rules - No arguing about stuff like "You already retreated this turn!" or "Defender doesn't prevent Zekrom's self-damage like that!"
  • Eventually you'll be able to play against people any time you want if we can get enough demand for this game. The ranking system should ensure you play someone who's similarly skilled to you.
Blarger, I like your idea of a Gem store.



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