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Win Trading: Cheating for the top Arena spots

Robin Torres, @cosmiclaurel
November 27, 2007
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Not only am I gullible, but I always seem to be the last to find out about the latest cheats. Here I am thinking that top Arena teams are there because of skill and teamwork, but it turns out that some of them are there because of a little thing called "Win Trading". I mean, I did know that there was some cheating going on, but that was legitimately high ranked teams selling spots for titles. It seems that now, top teams in certain Battlegroups are ranked so high solely because of Win Trading.

What is Win Trading? It is when a team raises its ranking by only playing a farm team that agrees to lose. The most common "trade" is for the farm team to be made up of alts of another highly ranked team and they switch. So for example, Cheating Ranked Team A will play Loser Farm Team A for 10 games. Then Cheating Ranked Team A will get on their alts and be Loser Farm Team B, losing to the mains from Loser Farm Team A (which are now Cheating Ranked Team B) for 10 games.





Another way to Win Trade is for Cheating Ranked Teams to pay people to form pickup Loser Farm Teams in order to get their 10 easy wins for the week. I've actually seen people recruit for this. I was rather confused as to why it would be fun or profitable to join an Arena team only to lose on purpose for 10 games, but I didn't think about it much because I was busy attempting to complete a BG Daily Quest.

The Blizzard party line has been that there was nothing they could do for the current season and that the new Personal Rating System was being put in place for Arena Season 3 to help counteract the problem. But as of yesterday, Drysc has announced the support team is reading and investigating all reports and that action is being taken. Drysc agrees that this contradicts previous posts on the same subject and has apologized for the confusion. Blizzard will not be making the details of the investigation public, but they do "hope to be able to get all" of the Win Traders.

As usual with cheats and exploits, I just don't see the fun of Win Trading. A real win is a sense of accomplishment. Coordinated teamwork is a joy. Playing teams that purposely lose just seems boring. But my play time is limited, so I try to milk as much fun out of every moment that I can. And I'm obviously a bit of a Goodie Two-Shoes.

Are you happy that Blizzard is cracking down on Win Trading? Or do you think this is just a creative use of game mechanics? Do people even use the phrase "Goodie Two-Shoes" anymore? (Or did I just show my age... again.)






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