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10.19.2011 Our policy on selling digital cards

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Ruiner

Man, it is really way too late for me to start posting about this, because it is a topic I am rather opinionated on. When I heard that we would be getting a Pokemon Trading Card Game online program, I considered it the best news I had heard in ages. As a player of both the Pokemon TCG, and Magic the Gathering, I have been using Magic Online for years now.

 

Now before people say "this is Pokemon, not Magic, etc etc etc " let me just point out something that people love to blindly ignore: Magic is extremely successful. Both online, and not. They have, whether you like the game or not, put forth very successful models for how to run a trading card game. Particularly in regards to organized play. To disregard that is naive. To start, organized play, back in 2004, when the game was taken back from Wizards of the Coast, Nintendo modeled their program around how Wizards did. Why is this not being done for an attempt at online play as well?

 

This isn't a situation where there is NO successful structure being implemented for a successful online version of a TCG. There is one already flourishing. Why not use the same ideas? Here is the main issue I have with this "policy" which, for reference, won't actually really matter. Example: it is "illegal" to sell Gold, or characters from World of Warcraft, but it happens all the time, to the point that people still farm gold and level characters for profit. How exactly does one plan on PREVENTING black market sales of cards? Example, I have about 600 codes worth of cards on my account, if I was to sell my account to someone for 400 dollars, undocumented, how is this going to be "prevented"? Not that i am going to, just simply that if people wanted to, they could.

 

 

 

So not only is it effectively unenforcable ( if someone wants to sell cards, they will. ) Do you want to ban the sale of the code cards too? I bought codes off of someone. Am I breaching the terms of agreement? I paid them on condition that they email me a document with the codes typed out. Purely virtual data. I could have been scammed! People, in this day and age, are aware of the risks of the internet market.

 

 

 

One of the reasons that Magic Online is successful ( and they charge full price for their cards. You want a booster pack? Pay 4 dollars. ) is because you can make money by using it. Is this BAD? Are companies who produce these games unaware of the benefits a secondary market provides for their game? If cards have no "actual" worth, there is little to no incentive to own them. If the cards can be sold, people can collect them, desire them, save them, and eventually cash out. People collect, and trade, and compete in TCGs often with the desire to be able to either break even, or try to profit as a result of it. The model of a "collectible/trading" card game changes the dynamic of a traditional card game in two major ways, one for the player, the other for the producer. The producing game sells cards because players need hard to get cards. The players buy cards because these rarer cards can then be moved for their value. It is a major incentive to why people enjoy TCGs. If you take that away from the equation, you remove a vital part of the TCG model.

 

On the same page, once players get the cards they want for their deck, why do they want to get more cards? More data that if they do not want to use, is effectively worthless? It invalidates online "prize support" too. With Magic Online, if you win tournaments, you get packs. Which in turn, is worth money. Which in turn, motivates players to play for these packs. This free "data" which costs the provider very little if anything. You'll get people to play online casually, but you miss a huge portion of the market. Do you expect people to sit online for 6+ hours for a tournament with valueless "prize support"? By enabling a monetary secondary market, you improve the quality of play for the users.

 

 

 

Now, I would be more willing to see this stance if the game sold packs for money, or at least a substantial amount, but since the code cards are sold inside boosters, the "buying from players not the company" issue isn't even relevent. Even then, the improved value of the online cards increases demand to the point where the net sale of the cards, if they were to be sold online through the program, would increase.

 

 

 

What is the current plan for online tournaments? Giving out online packs? How long until those motivated to play simply get tired of playing for value-less cards that have piles of since they won? At this point, I own enough copies of every card I could use. I have no incentive to acquire new cards. Now imagine how much of an issue this becomes once the game has been out longer. Everyone will have their collections, and people will be less interested in getting anything beyond what they can use, so where is the incentive to play?

 

 

 

So I guess the big question is, as long as the game agreement states that Nintendo takes no responsibility for the third party sale of cards, what is the ACTUAL downside of allowing them to be sold? A lot of players will be more interested in playing if they can be sold. And I can see a grand total of well, ZERO players who would be offput by it. There is NO downside to it, and actual upside.

 

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tossreaver

I believe the reason why they are not doing this is because of the the LAW. If an accident/incident occurs in your property, the first person that most likely be questioned about it is you and could posibly be sued. Hence the owners usually try to prevent this situation by putting up rules in the area. This type of occurance happens in most private places for example skateboarding in the mall. Security guards will eventually warn you not to skateboard inside the mall because skateboarding is regarded as high risk and you could end up being hurt. If you got hurt inside the mall, you could possibly sue the owners of the mall for having an unsafe environment.

 

This type of situation is no different in online games. Much like riding a skateboard is considered to be risky, trading virtual items or properties with real money is in the same category. So if you ever got scammed for buying or selling cards, the only person that you could legally sue is the other person and not the wealthy company that lawyers would love to deal with and make lots of monies. In other words, companies are just saving their own skin from problems that deal with this issue. The potential loss of money over the secondary market is probably nothing compared to the bill that the law hands out.

 

Also, if you want to see how troublesome it is to be selling virtual goods by selling it first through real money, just look through the boards in this game, PTCGO, and look for threads such as "my codes are not working or my booster did not come with codes." Im pretty sure the costumer support of PKMN Co. are having a blast sorting them out. Hence in no way PKMN Co., would ever endorsed you to sell virtual cards for real life money and deal with any potential issues. Why would they spend manpower on sorting out disputes over something they will not gain money on?

 

Finally, much like riding skateboards in the mall, you can ride it and at worst the security guard will just kick you out. And this mirrors selling virtual cards for real money. You can keep doing it till you get caught and at worst you will just get kicked out. That is why gold farmers in MMORPG will always be around and PTCGO will be no different. However when that one incident occurs and you took the risk of potentially getting scammed. Your on your own like it should be because you gambled and lost and the only person to blame is you.

 

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Aisor

 

I believe the reason why they are not doing this is because of the the LAW. If an accident/incident occurs in your property, the first person that most likely be questioned about it is you and could posibly be sued. .

 

 

 

 

Nope, terms of use would contain limitation of liability.

 

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tossreaver

 

 

I believe the reason why they are not doing this is because of the the LAW. If an accident/incident occurs in your property, the first person that most likely be questioned about it is you and could posibly be sued. .

 

 

 

 

Nope, terms of use would contain limitation of liability.

 

 

look ,im not a lawyer but I believe my next sentence addresses your comment:

 

Hence the owners usually try to prevent this situation by putting up rules in the area.

 

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cpeterik

When I first input all of my codes a few months ago, I was extremely happy to learn that I could flat out trade packs for single cards online.

 

This was amazing! No more opening packs blindly looking for cards I specifically needed to build a competitive deck!

 

It was fun at first, getting the feel for which cards are worth what number of packs, and getting a rush from making a good deal!

 

Now it is time to build my deck.. I've got all the trainers and Pokemon I need to match the deck that I won a Battle Roads with! ....Except for TWO cards.

 

I've been building the deck for 3 months and I haven't played a single online game because it was nearly impossible to obtain these two cards. With the inflation of codes going way up (packs are traded for singles, but those packs are not opened, they themselves are traded), I couldn't offer enough for the cards I needed.

 

So what did I do? I asked a friend to sell me them online for a few bucks, and he did.

 

And you know what I did then?

 

I played PTCGO all. night. long.

 

So that's my little story. Hope you like it.

 

To Pokemon.. I think the best thing you can possibly do is read "Runier"s post (above), and then when you're done, read it again. There are some amazing points in there.

 

 

 

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Aisor

 

 

 

I believe the reason why they are not doing this is because of the the LAW. If an accident/incident occurs in your property, the first person that most likely be questioned about it is you and could posibly be sued. .

 

 

 

 

Nope, terms of use would contain limitation of liability.

 

 

look ,im not a lawyer but I believe my next sentence addresses your comment:

 

Hence the owners usually try to prevent this situation by putting up rules in the area.

 

 

 

 

What I mean is there are no legal reasons to set up an elaborate in-game currency like gems to replace money. Contract law lets you set liability for damages freely within the limitations of consumer protection laws. If contract terms include such limitation of liability there's absolutely no way there's any risk of lawsuits caused by issues within secondary market.

 

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inchy5000

Chris makes some interesting points, but I do have a few comments. First of all, regarding enforcement - I don't think it is true that the policy is effectively uneforceable, as at least one person has discovered. If you want to sell PTCGO singles here and there "under the table" for a few bucks, as exampled by Colin's post, then there isn't much Pokemon can do abuot that. There also isn't much incentive for Pokemon to stop small transactions like this either. By forbidding the sale of PTCGO singles/boosters and creating the gem system, Pokemon makes itself the primary seller of PTCGO singles. Small scale transactions are not going to compete with Pokemon for the position of primary seller. An eBay store with a lot of product, however, very well could. The policy is very much enforceable against this sort of practice. Don't forget that the policy also acts as a deterrent. There will be less people even willing to engage in such transactions for fear of being banned from PTCGO, or if the conduct is "egregious" enough, from PTCG all together.

 

You also mention there is no downside to allowing cards to be sold. This is certainly true for users, but not for Pokemon. The whole "we don't want users to be defrauded" argument is a ruse. While I'm not saying Pokemon doesn't care about its users being defrauded, there is no reason for Pokemon to think it has to protect itself from liability for third party sales (I think we all agree with that, except for maybe the kid who likes to skateboard in malls). The downside is for Pokemon because they simply stand to make less money by allowing large scale third party sales. At least I THINK they stand to make less money. We can get into some uncertain territory with factors like player growth, interest, etc. but on its face I think Pokemon comes out better financially by forbidding the sale of PTCGO singles.

 

Magic's online play is interesting because theoretically you would think the same argument would apply for them. Maybe Pokemon thinks Magic could be making more money off of the online game and they have a better business model? Not really sure, but it does stand out as a glaring question.

 

One final interesting point you bring up is the sale of the codes themselves. This has been going on for some time now and based on Pokemon's response - or lack there of - it seems to be within the terms of use. I don't instinctively see a difference between selling the code and selling the boosters/singles, but I suppose the idea is that you have not actually agreed to any terms of use by purchasing a real booster with a code inside, so you are free to do what you want with the code. But once the code is redeemed, you agree to the terms of use.

 

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PrimeApe101

The Pokemon TCG Online is a huge step forward for the Pokemon Company, and one that has the potential to further increase interest and involvement in the TCG worldwide. It has revolutionized accessibility to the game through digital media.

 

 

 

However, I can't help but feel that by limiting the growth of secondary markets Pokemon will ultimately hurt the growth of the online game. I really feel for the online stores that have taken the time and effort to stock the online cards, but cannot sell their investment due to Pokemon's rules and regulations. Potential customers won't be able to finish competetive decks on the Online program, become bored, and then stop playing. Gems aren't a realistic substitute as players cannot place a monetary worth on them, as addressed in previous posts.

 

 

 

This Online platform has the potential to revolutionize the Pokemon TCG as we know it. I really hope that it does, but with these new rules and regulations I find it difficult to beleive that Pokemon will be able to compete with rivals (aka Magic) in the digital marketplace.

 

 

 

I wish TPCI the best of luck with this project, and appreciate the ability to communicate feedback so easily.

 

 

 

Tom H. (5 years playing)

 

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Reflexisz

Limiting people from buying cards virtually could potentially hinder the pokemon online game, i for one had intended on buying virtual cards so i could build decks, but now that i can't really makes me reconsider if i still wan't to use the pokemon online game, I think being able to buy cards using a 3rd party source such as ebay should not be illegal, nor should you try to monopolize the market using "gems" i'd much rather buy cards than obtain gems

 

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Ruiner

Inchy: Yes, it is POSSIBLE to punish someone who sells cards ( Clearly -_- ) but there is very little way to stop it if people are smart about it. If the game is successful ( Ideally what Pokemon hopes for ) the incentive to sell the cards goes up, thus the effort people will put in to sell them uncaught will also go up. If Blizzard has failed to really stop the sale of their product, and they have been trying for over half a decade to do so, how do you expect Pokemon to magically solve the issue? Perhaps Magic simply realized it was easier to allow the transactions then try to actively enforce it, because the moment your product becomes in demand ( which should be the goal ) you are hard pressed to stop the sale of it.

 

Now, as far as I can tell, Pokemon has given no suggestion that they will be selling singles themselves. Gems are either incentive to buy non-game impacting items ( mainly cosmetics ) or will be used as a type of online "currency" for transactions within the game, as Tickets are in Magic Online. ( A ticket has a retail value of a dollar ) Tickets are used to pay for tournament entry fees and buy boosters. ( Magic does not directly sell singles, merely sealed product )

 

This brings up another point ( and I am HOPING these "gems" will be used for this purpose. ) The game needs a form of online currency. The concept of having to trade sealed packs for cards is weak. Effectively this is putting the incremental value of trades at four dollars. Thus cards valued under 4 dollars are hard to deal in. The current trade system of offering up special proposed trades is unflexible and crude at the least. If these Gems hold the approximate value of 50 cents, or a dollar a piece, then you can trade a Gem for a Junk Arm, for example, or 28 Gems for a Yanmega ( assuming they still fetch the prior price of 7 boosters ). That is how Magic works. If you want to trade online, you offer up the card you want to get rid of, and how many Tickets you value it at. Someone then trades you the tickets, which if they want a specific card, they go and buy with said tickets. It makes it a lot smoother.

 

And Pokemon only stands to benefit more from forbiding sales IF THEY ARE SELLING THEM. The current PTCGO model is a bit baffling. I don't see how they plan on making money off of this venture by simply including the codes for boosters in real boosters. Without increasing the price of the product. They are not raking in entry fees for tournaments ( yet, but they haven't charged for IRL tourneys, so I don't know if they will online ) and they are not selling product online. So I'm not even seeing a source of revenue FROM this game. I guess they are hoping that the game encourages more sales of real boosters, but I'm not so sure thats going to be the case. I haven't seen ANYONE go out and buy packs under the reasoning of wanting online codes. They keep the codes they have, and I know a lot of people who buy the codes for 50 cents to 80 cents a piece online, and forego buying packs altogether. Thus I can't imagine a large increase in booster sales as a result of this. So in order to really understand whether they feel allowing a secondary market to flourish will cut into their "profits" we'd have to actually understand how they are planning on even profitting off of this.

 

 

 

Perhaps the "end game" is to charge in the long run once the game is established, which I guess is a fair idea. Yet that isn't going to work as long as there are so many codes floating around. I'm sure a vast majority of codes put in packs never even get uploaded or used, so they are still in circulation. I'm all for being charged to partake in playing if that means that there can be actual prizes won. If there isn't, well, I'm perfectly content playing on Apprentice, Redshark, or PlayTcg.me because there really isn't an upside to using this program if there isn't any form of real organized play being offered. Even if that was not the initial intent of the game, speculation ran rampant long enough online that its what people are expecting from it by now.

 

I could understand banning the sale of cards IF Pokemon was offering the same product directly, for any sort of price. Yet what difference does it make to Pokemons profitability if Player A gives Player B their extra cards or money? Neither transaction posititively benefits Nintendo. In fact, it impacts them completely neutrally ( unless Player B goes to bed with buyers remorse, freaks out, hunts down Player A and kills him, leading to Player As parents suing past some loophole in the Terms of Agreements )

 

I'll use a very simple example. Look at the sales of booster packs. I'll use Nationals this year as an example. Vendors were selling out of Triumphant packs at 5 dollars a piece, and offering 3/10 on most other sets. Why? The packs sold more because the potential value of the packs, with Magnezone AND Yanmega in them, were that much higher. Those 3/10 packs barely sold, yet the vendors were sold out of Triumphant by the end of the weekend. TCG consumers buy based on perceived net value. If they stand to open more value worth of cards, they will buy more. Sets full of more valuable cards outsell sets of weaker cards. Any anomoly in this would likely be caused by Pokemon having a large sum of sales done from retail stores such as Walmart, where you do get the " parent buys their kid random packs for doing well on their report card " effect, but if you were to look at the demographic that would be partaking in PTCGO, my analysis stands true. That being said, if Pokemon's business plan here is to use those packs, with codes, to help sell more packs in the long run, then look at it this way.

 

Say you buy a box of Emerging Powers. You get your standard value of the box. Now say you upload the 36 codes, and open a box of Triumphant online. Now assume these cards can be sold. Worst case scenario, you can get 20-30 dollars worth of cards from this box, possibly with upwards of 50 if you open the right Primes. Suddenly, each box nets the buyer an additional 20+ dollars of value. THIS is incentive to buy. Buying valueless cards to play in an online game? Sure, a little bit of incentive. Using nothing but DATA ( very little cost to PUI! ) to effectively give consumers 20-30 bucks off each of their boxes while retaining the same amount of profit taken in off the box? THATS incentive to buy. THAT will increase sales. When the codes start to take 20-30 dollars off my effective cost of the product ( and Nintendo still makes the full value off that box! ) I am far more interested in buying more and more boxes, and America is greedy, I doubt I'm alone in this mindset.

 

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Ruiner

ok, I'm not even sure what these filters just blurped out, but I can guarantee you they were not curse words -_-

 

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Mod_Snow

Hello again!

 

 

 

I just wanted everyone to know that I am taking down a lot of this information and reviewing it with my fellow Profs. I would write out another long answer addressing everyone's concerns, but I would like to juggle this around first and get you guys some more informed answers. Just know that we are not neglecting anyone's opinions and are reviewing all of these suggestions seriously. We really appreciate the dedication that everyone here puts forth to write out these suggestions and opinions with the intent of helping the game!

 

 

 

Feel free to keep posting your feedback on this as we continue to review it!

 

 

 

Stay cool!

 

 

 

 

 

Prof. Snow

 

Parasol Lady

 

 

Need to report a bug or an issue? Submit a ticket to support.pokemon.com!

 

"I'm like a hunter of peace. One who chases the elusive mayfly of love... or something like that."

 

- Vash the Stampede

 

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tossreaver

 

The whole "we don't want users to be defrauded" argument is a ruse. While I'm not saying Pokemon doesn't care about its users being defrauded, there is no reason for Pokemon to think it has to protect itself from liability for third party sales (I think we all agree with that, except for maybe the kid who likes to skateboard in malls).

 

Lets look at something that we can all relate in real life such as school field trips. Before you take a school field trip, you would bring home a piece of paper for you/your parents to sign. This piece of paper is usually called the release of liability paper. What this means is that if something happens to you that doesnt involve the school such as getting beaten up by a random stranger, you cannot sue the school. The school does this because they are the host and they are partly responsible for you when you go to their events/property. So that is why they remove their responsibilties when you go outside. This is no different from playing PTCGO in that their lawyers even says no because there are bad people out there. The fact that your playing inside their property means that they expect you to play inside only. Thats why they create their own currencies like stated by the OP and many games does them too like Microsoft Points, Riot Points, Station Cash, Nexon, Event Ticket.... list goes on for many many online games and are very successful with it.

 

 

 

In fact when you play this game, you agree to PKMN's Co.'s term of service. And one of their term of service is that they protect themselves againts third party sales that you make. According to the OP, their reason is fraud. If you do not agree, then you should not play the game.

 

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inchy5000

 

 

The whole "we don't want users to be defrauded" argument is a ruse. While I'm not saying Pokemon doesn't care about its users being defrauded, there is no reason for Pokemon to think it has to protect itself from liability for third party sales (I think we all agree with that, except for maybe the kid who likes to skateboard in malls).

 

Lets look at something that we can all relate in real life such as school field trips. Before you take a school field trip, you would bring home a piece of paper for you/your parents to sign. This piece of paper is usually called the release of liability paper. What this means is that if something happens to you that doesnt involve the school such as getting beaten up by a random stranger, you cannot sue the school. The school does this because they are the host and they are partly responsible for you when you go to their events/property. So that is why they remove their responsibilties when you go outside. This is no different from playing PTCGO in that their lawyers even says no because there are bad people out there. The fact that your playing inside their property means that they expect you to play inside only. Thats why they create their own currencies like stated by the OP and many games does them too like Microsoft Points, Riot Points, Station Cash, Nexon, Event Ticket.... list goes on for many many online games and are very successful with it.

 

 

 

In fact when you play this game, you agree to PKMN's Co.'s term of service. And one of their term of service is that they protect themselves againts third party sales that you make. According to the OP, their reason is fraud. If you do not agree, then you should not play the game.

 

 

 

 

I think you may be mashing the terms "property" or "real property" and "intellectual property." You are not "on Pokemon's property" and thus Pokemon becomes responsible for something that happens to you as if you walked into Pokemon's "house" and slipped on a banana peal. In fact, just because you are injured on someone's property does not automatically make the owner of the property liable for injuries. Furthermore, even if your analogy WAS applicable, a user being defrauded on eBay may have nothing to do with the actual use of the PTCGO - someone may purchase what they believe is a PTCGO single and the user is never sent the card. There is no use of the PTCGO in that situation other than the fact that the PTCGO exists and someone has attempted to make money off of it by selling something that may be used in conjunction with the PTCGO. This is no different than if someone tried to sell you ANYTHING on eBay. Are you saying that if someone were ripped off on a real PTCG card that somehow Pokemon is responsible for that? Finally, even IF this were all true, Pokemon's liability is simply waived when you agree it is not responsible for third party sales. There is no need then to forbid the digital sale of singles in order to prevent liable - it has already been waived!

 

Coming back to Chris, I think you are missing how Pokemon IS in fact selling single cards. I don't want to rehash my entire earlier post, but basically with the gem system if a player wants to purchase a single card, they have to purchase enough gems, i.e. whatever the single card is worth in gems (which is set by the market), and only THEN can they transact for the Yanmega. Pokemon made money where it wouldn't have if it didn't forbid the sale of PTCGO singles. Without the ban, a player wouldn't bother purchasing gems but instead would just use the money to buy the PTCGO single itself. Now, I will admit that a buyer would probably rather transact with the gems rather than eBay or "under the table" as it is unquestionably safer to some degree. But as I mentioned earlier, at what cost? If the gems do not have some value outside of trading and other miscellaneous avatar items, then where is the market for them? Gems must be redeemable for some sort of value, e.g. entry into tournament with tangible prizes. Otherwise it will probably be a large failure.

 

As a side note, I think booster packs HAVE in fact risen in cost since they have begun to include PTCGO codes (up to $4.29 now, maybe?). So they are making some profit there, not to mention the added incentive to buy boosters now that you get more for your money (even with the price increase, given that codes sell for $0.79ish).

 

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JasonKlaczynski

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.

 

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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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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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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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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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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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jenbamo

 

 

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

 

 

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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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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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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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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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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