Friday saw the removal of guild bank functionality in The Elder Scrolls Online following concerns that players had found a loophole in item pooling. Zenimax Online did not give a specific reason for the move, however, the issue of item duplication is suggested to already be widespread. A patch has already been released to quash the bug once and for all, but problems remain.
The bug involved stacking items and then removing them multiple times without the item disappearing from the inventory, before being sold onto in-game vendors. Downloading an auto-click mod could speed up this process tenfold, resulting in players sporting full legendary gear early after the game’s release, billions of gold, countless crafting materials thus rendering the overall economy of Elder Scrolls Online completely worthless.
After good ol’ Reddit and wannabe-tech-savvy players with YouTube accounts joined in the fun by spreading news of the fault even more, it became clear that after having “dropped the ball” as one response described, Zenimax hit back:
“Today, we made our first major strike against those who choose to cheat in ESO, permanently banning thousands,” the statement reported. “This is only the beginning of our ongoing efforts to keep the game free from botters, speed hackers, and gold spammers. We want to thank everyone who has sent in-game reports about these individuals in ESO—your reports helped us identify many of the accounts we banned today. Please continue to report any botters, gold spammers, and speed hackers you see in-game, and we’ll continue our efforts to keep them out of Tamriel.”
So why hadn’t this been fixed much, much sooner? According to the Reddit discussion, staff have been aware of the problem since the game’s beta stages. Some fans are already suggesting the possibility of a re-release or multiple rollbacks due to the scale of the exploit.
This also has huge implications for PvP and PvE; if players have already acquired high-end gear then little stands between them and a leaderboard high score or a win for their chosen side of the war in Cyrodiil.
Luckily the subscription fee after having played the beta was enough to put me off purchasing the £89.99 Imperial Edition; the game has had far from glittering reviews. Hopefully you guys saved some pennies, too, and haven’t fallen victim to these pointless money-sapping antics. If you’re not one of those lucky few, well, good luck sticking around…