Fake players on JP01

  • I remember the discussion about a two way authentication for RN. People have cried about less comfort and some other things...it seemed they rather accept multi accounts than a more save authentification. Well, this is anoying to me and I can imaging that it is the same at RN as well. What I want to say is..every time, we tryed to suggest some things..people start crying about "it's to hard to logon...." or "keep things simple"...

  • Let me summarize the results as up to now:

    - nothing will be done against multi and fake accounts because nobody has a clue what to do.

    - for community managers it is not sufficient to be included in the discussion. Their job is to repeat rules and to create additional difficulties. They need a separate PN before they put in promising to do anything.whatever that will be.

    No, I don't feel pissed because I know this behaviour already from support on several servers in several regions.

    So once again, RN go ahead with this manner of hearing and handling customer complaints.

  • If we as players can find the multi accounts why can't Travian? It isn't so hard to find them. You don't have to proof it by IP adress or all other methods. Just observing the game itself is enough you will find them very fast. When you see an entire asso the one after the other come onilne, do the same things go offline again and this repeats on a regular bases that is proof enough. They can be smart by using VPN etc. but are not very creative.

    That's another reason I don't like to see crew members play the game actively. They should observe their assigned server(s) for things like this and not distracted by the game. I already said this many times before. Game and "Job" don't go together.

    :engine1::engine1::engine1:

    Watch your thoughts because they can become words

    Watch your words because they become your deeds

    Watch your deeds because they become your habits

    Watch your habits because they become your character

    Watch your character because it will become your destiny

  • Naike,

    you are completely right. If someone would like to do something there are indicators as mentioned above: zero trains, investing millions of money, no career points and so on. However, it is the issue that RN is not willing to do something than blowing bubbles, repeating the rules, moving the issue from one desk to the another in the proven hope that at the end the customers resp. players will loose interest in continuing the discussion.

  • Samisu :

    I want to leave another comment on my posting. I did what you recommend and It is now 24 hours from my first ticket to support on the japanese server. Now there are 5 tickets from me with always new fake players. So far, I checked it 5 minutes ago, no response at all from support side.


    How sad is that? I do understand that during weekends the support has not so much man power, although most players are active during the weekend. I would have expected at least a note like: "Thanks for your report. I will check it carefully". But no response is very disappointing and disgusting.

  • I was naming the players here to give the readers an idea that we are not talking about 1 or 2 players. And I can assure you there are more. I stopped the list coz I just wanted to point out that it is not a singular problem we are facing.

  • Fake accounts to disrupt a city / association


    - they are created ONLY to invest in the required products and supplies.


    We are in era 5, day 10.

    City level 31


    Required goods

    - chemistry

    -hamburgers

    - red shirt

    - stainless steel


    All more than 20 fake accounts ( all level 1, no stars, no trains, not even the career train)

    invest ONLY in our city, in

    - chemistry + oil ( required product and supply)

    - hamburgers + sausages (required good and suppply)

    - red shirt + red cloth and shoes (required good and supply)

    - stainless steel + supplies


    Each time we real players invest and gain majority again, new fake accounts are created. Most common amount invested is 7,000,000 for each fake account.


    Each time one factory grows / levels up, new fake accounts appear ( about 3 or 4 per factory, some times more) and each one invests about 7,000,000.


    If you were a player playing in our city, you would spot this immediately by just looking at the factories.

    For us even easier because we get the notification we have lost the factories.


    Actually it took me more time / longer to write this post than it took me to realize someone has A LOT of time and a lot of dirty playing and instead of winning the server in a clean / fair way, the only thing they thought they could attempt is disrupt our game.


    We are top 1 association by the way, by a large difference to the top 2.


    IF all of us could immediately see what is happening, so could a willing and competent staff member by just logging in and spending 5 minutes around Dory, if this staff member existed.

  • Good Morning,


    this topic was already discussed in another domain a while ago and there are some things you need to consider.


    a) You need to differentiate between "Fake players" and churning players. "Churn" basically means that players stop playing. And, as you might know, we, like all other games, try to attract new players. Because of that, we have a steady flow of new players and many of them churn. How many of them churn depends on where they are coming from (i.e. which kind of advertisment/user acquisition method brought them here), but in general you can say that the majority of players does not continue to play for long. Not just in Rail Nation, but in general in free games. Especially for mobile games it's very common that player just install a game, test it for a few minutes or hours and then never come back.This is where the vast majority of those low-level almost-inactive accounts are coming from. They are not multis, they are not bots, they are not fake accounts. They are churned players who tested the game for a short while and then left.

    I'm not saying that fake accounts (as in secondary account/smurf/twink/multi) don't exist. I am sure they do. But most of these almost inactive accounts are not those "fake accounts".


    b) About the "It's all about numbers" argument: While that is obviously true in a way and we as a company obviously need to care about revenue, this is in no way related to those accounts. We do not profit from churning players, we, exactly as you, want players to stick around and play normally and for a long time.


    c) About doing something against actual fake accounts: Sadly this is easier said than done. Because in order to do that, we need proof. Not just evidence, but rock solid proof. We need to KNOW that an account was created solely for malicious intent and that it's breaking our rules. Assuming or being very sure is not enough. We need to know. Otherwise we have no legal ground to stand on and, even worse, we would also hit innocent players, which is completely inacceptable. That's why doing something against it is not easy.


    d) About Two Factor Authentication: While 2FA is probably the gold (ar at least silver) standard in terms of account security, there is a huge downside to it: Most people don't want to do it. You will find very few free games that use mandatory 2FA, because this simply stops players from registering at all. When people just want to test a game quickly, the last thing they want to do is to provide their phone number or anything like that. So instead of doing that, they just leave again. It would essentially mean that we wouldn't just prevent fake accounts, we would mostly prevent new accounts in general. It probably sounds a bit overly dramatic to say it like this, but: This would mean a quite quick end for Rail Nation.



    All that being said:
    If you encounter actual "fake players" (although I would prefer to call them "trolls" or "disruptive players"), accounts that are specifically created by other players on the same gameworld to disrupt gameplay, and you have proof for that: Please write a support ticket, including the proof. And yes, I am aware that getting proof for this is not easy, but I hope you understand that we can not take action against players without actual proof that they violated the rules.

    _________________________________________

    Found?DU5gLUo.png

  • If we as players can find the multi accounts why can't Travian? It isn't so hard to find them. You don't have to proof it by IP adress or all other methods. Just observing the game itself is enough you will find them very fast. When you see an entire asso the one after the other come onilne, do the same things go offline again and this repeats on a regular bases that is proof enough. They can be smart by using VPN etc. but are not very creative.

    That's another reason I don't like to see crew members play the game actively. They should observe their assigned server(s) for things like this and not distracted by the game. I already said this many times before. Game and "Job" don't go together.

    Seeing the multi-accounti and proving the multi-account are two different things.


    You see a certain situation and you know they are multiple accounts created only to disrupt gameplay, however, for Support is not as easy, they have to prove beyond resonable doubt that the accounts are fake.

    Currently playing on:

    M1.201 Scandinavia

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Stubaski: typos ().

  • If the entire topic multi accounts, or how they are called, doesn't have any priority why forbid them than?

    I have seen people get banned who played honestly with a "multi account" it wasn't really a multi account. I won't get into details but the honest again are punished over the cheaters.

    :engine1::engine1::engine1:

    Watch your thoughts because they can become words

    Watch your words because they become your deeds

    Watch your deeds because they become your habits

    Watch your habits because they become your character

    Watch your character because it will become your destiny

  • Salix , while I completely understand your point (it's basically what I said regarding the proof etc), you must realise that what you just said to Yuki and his teammates is basically "yeah sorry, can't do shit for you, have fun against those bots investing millions abusing the catch-up package we just installed". Your point about churns is valid, but those churns don't know how to invest, even less how to all invest in a new industry specifically and with the same amount of money (the whole bank account), without doing the tutorial first. And it's easy to spot they don't do it with the PP they have (0 I believe Yuki said).


    But then, rock solid proof can only be provided by support, that can see patterns in login times, login IPs, etc. And probably needs a tough investigation. I don't know about that. Anyway, players can't give you any proof, because we have no tools at our disposal (except against dumb players that say in pm that they have multi-accounts, but then those usually aren't that trolly, they just want more people in their city because they are only 4-5 or so).



    In their place, I would be very, very, very mad. 1 guy is basically ruining the game for them all, the most active corp on the server (by far apparently).


    And if I look at my server, and think "oh, if the top corp can't fight this off, who could?" I realise the answer is extremely easy : if the top corp cannot fight it, the server is dead, because they regroup the most active players, and the few corps below have just one goal : to take out the top dog, to win fairly against them.



    If you can't do anything against them (and I KNOW it's very difficult to fight this), then maybe you should consider removing the catch-up package that was a great idea, but is being abused by Assholes (just like most great ideas...)

  • Seeing the multi-accounti and proving the multi-account are two different things.


    You see at certain situations and you know they are multiple accounts created only to disrupt gameplay, however, for Support is not as easy, thry have to prove beyond resonable doubt that the account is fake.

    This is so true!

    You can witness some rule breaking, you - as a witness - can be absolutely sure, but to prove it is just the hard part.


    From my perception:

    - Supporters are (almost all) volunteers, players like you and me. Volunteers who are not employees cannot have access to the private data, to the server logs, to the account (and payment) data etc. A volunteer supporter can only forward reports to an employee, who is allowed and committed to safety of private data to prove multi accounting.

    - In the German section, employees sometimes tell, they got tools to 100% prove multi accounting. Well, for me (who sometimes worked on developing tools like those during the last 4 decades) this is hard to believe. Those tools exist (if you accept less than 100%), but they are very very expensive. So, if even companies like Netflix or Amazon tell us, that they cannot detect multi use of their accounts in a way that any RL judge would accept the proofs ... I can imagine, how hard it is for the support employees ... and how easy it is for those disrupters of the game to have fun spoiling our fun.


    Well, RN does not like to discuss these matters. However, they do so much damage to the game and to the numbers of players.


    I see two general ways, one a revolution, the other(s) already suggested here:


    - revolution: Delete the multi account rule(s) from the TOC and game rules. This way the good players can fight back, and RN saves a lot of time, effords and manpower on working about the complaints, detecting, proving and banning.


    - the mild way:

    a) Be present. Play together with us. Be in the game and listen to the other players. Listen to their worries, to their suggestions, to their observations. Know, what is going on ingame, not only every now and then, but on an almost daily basis.

    From my own experience I can tell, if developers play their game daily, more than 50% (almost 80%) of the bugs will be detected and fixed without that big organisational effort of forwarding, time planning, translating and more.

    b) Think about the login procedure. At the moment login needs several servers, several refreshes of the login screen and lobby ... I don't think that this system allows the addition of double proof logins (with smartphone for example). But if the login process would be streamligned some additional proof of single use would be possible.


    Just my 2 cents ...

    Sie sagen immer: "Sei ehrlich und sag, was du denkst."

    Und dann sagt man es und dann gucken sie böse..



  • If you can't do anything against them (and I KNOW it's very difficult to fight this), then maybe you should consider removing the catch-up package that was a great idea, but is being abused by Assholes (just like most great ideas...)

    This was exactly my main complain with the catch up package, as far as I'm concerned there shouldn't be any, if you decide to start late it's on you.

    If you start in late era1 or era2 you can catch up, if you start later than that you're probably doing it to cause mayem or "do a friend a favour", which usually means the same, if you start in era6 you don't need help as you are just farming PP.

    Currently playing on:

    M1.201 Scandinavia

  • Nice to see this discussion still going, thank you for all the feedback and ideas so far! It is so very important for both the crew and to other players to see how much those who break the rules can hurt the whole game experience.


    When someone chooses to break the rules, they are getting an advantage to themselves. This advantage is hurting all the other players they come in contact with, meaning their bad choices are hurting the game and game experience. In the long run, this choice will also hurt the ones who broke the rules. Unfortunately, there are always people who want to play the system and not the game, and it falls to the crew and the rest of the player community to help remove these "players".


    Finding rock solid proof does not fall to players, it is not their (your) responsibility. What players can do is give all the info they have to game support in order to point the crew in the right direction.


    Game support receives both false claims of multi-accounts and claims that need just a little bit more proof before getting banned and removed. There are also those reports from players where a city is filled with a dozen or more lvl 1 accounts, who all advance at the same speed in the same associations. These mass multi-account cases are usually the easiest to handle, and even if removing the accounts takes days - those are still removed when we have 100% proof.


    So, keep sending the account names, city locations, "proof", and any details to game support you think would help them remove the multi-accounts. There's not enough crew members to play actively on all servers, or those who would have access to all the technical tools needed, so we really need to approach you players with this request to point us in the right direction. It is hard to come up with better ways to keep the fake accounts in check, than working together with this.

  • yeah sorry, can't do shit for you

    Yeah, but I rather be honest about this instead of sugarcoating it. This is the situation we have to deal with and within which we need to look for a solution (if there is one).


    I absolutely understand the problem and the frustration with it and I agree that finding a solution for it would be amazing.

    Your point about churns is valid, but those churns don't know how to invest, even less how to all invest in a new industry specifically and with the same amount of money

    Yeah, and this is one of the main problems: A new player looks pretty much the same as a troll, concerning play style.

    Getting rid of the "catch up package" would certainly help to stop disruptive players (or at least increase the effort they have to put into it), but, similar to 2FA, this comes with big costs. This would basically mean that players can't (or won't) join a server anymore once it has run a few days. For user acquisition/reactivation, this would be a catastrophe.

    But then, rock solid proof can only be provided by support, that can see patterns in login times, login IPs, etc.

    Even for the support this is difficult, because families show pretty much the same pattern as multis do. So it wouldn't be really proof, but rather an educated guess...which is not good enough.

    n the German section, employees sometimes tell, they got tools to 100% prove multi accounting

    Not sure what you are referting to, but I think it depends on what you mean. Sometimes we are 100% sure. If that is what you mean, then yes, this is actually true. If you mean that we can identify 100% of all multis, that's not true and I would be worried if any employee said this.

    - revolution: Delete the multi account rule(s) from the TOC and game rules. This way the good players can fight back, and RN saves a lot of time, effords and manpower on working about the complaints, detecting, proving and banning.

    To be honest I never thought about this option. What negative and positive outcomes would you expect?

    Be present. Play together with us.

    We do. That's not a solution. Not having empathy with the players problems is not the problem here.

    From my own experience I can tell, if developers play their game daily, more than 50% (almost 80%) of the bugs will be detected and fixed without that big organisational effort

    Good thing that we do that then ;)



    Think about the login procedure

    I don't think that's the problem. For example on mobile, as a first time player, there is no login at all. It doesn't get much more streamlined than that. I agree that there are is some...clunkyness in the login, partly because of bugs, partly because it's a browser game. But I don't agree that streamlining this will allow us to implement 2FA without suffering the drastic consequences this would have on registrations.
    If we would be a pure mobile game, then yes. You could give people an instant account (no login/registration at all) and if they want access to certain features, they quickly need to add....idk...their email, their phone number, something like that. But for a browser game it's not that easy.


    Personally, I think that the most effective approach would be via gameplay/game design. Disruptive gameplay behavior should not be easy or not be effective or not be attractive. But, to be perfectly honest, I have no idea how such a solution (that shouldn't also hit genuine new players) would actually look like. Maybe one of you has an idea.

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    Found?DU5gLUo.png

  • Getting rid of the "catch up package" would certainly help to stop disruptive players (or at least increase the effort they have to put into it), but, similar to 2FA, this comes with big costs. This would basically mean that players can't (or won't) join a server anymore once it has run a few days. For user acquisition/reactivation, this would be a catastrophe.


    "A few days" means up to 15 days after the server has started, that's 2 weeks, I have joined servers in era 2 and still managed good results, I think my latest start was around day 1 or 2 of era 2.


    Unfortunately it's the nature of the beast, you can't expect to have people join 2 months in and have a day 1 experience, no matter what you give them, on the other hand, there is plenty of evidence that the catch up package is damaging to those player that joined on day 1 due to player abuse.


    I'd be curious to see those stats on player acquisition, mostly what is the retention rate, how many of those joining late actually finish the game and how many instead end up inactive soon after.


    Joining late can be considered from mid era 2 to end of era 4, many coming in era 5/6 are PP hunter.

    Currently playing on:

    M1.201 Scandinavia

  • Yeah, and this is one of the main problems: A new player looks pretty much the same as a troll, concerning play style.

    Getting rid of the "catch up package" would certainly help to stop disruptive players (or at least increase the effort they have to put into it), but, similar to 2FA, this comes with big costs. This would basically mean that players can't (or won't) join a server anymore once it has run a few days. For user acquisition/reactivation, this would be a catastrophe.

    Depends on which part of the "catch up package" the trolls are using in this case. Probably the starting money which was doubled with 4.13 if the city isn't overcrowded, If the citry ist overcrowded they profit from the buffed track production and the track vouchers. Especially the latter is really convienient if I register only after era 6 is already startet for career reasons.


    To mitigate the problem the starting money could be reduced in the later eras. Maybe to the old levels before the buff. Another step could be the starting level of the track production. Obviously I would hate that, but if its for the greater good I could accept it.

  • "A few days" means up to 15 days after the server has started, that's 2 weeks, I have joined servers in era 2 and still managed good results, I think my latest start was around day 1 or 2 of era 2.

    Yes, but you are an experienced players, you can compensate with skill and knowledge. A new player is simply frustrated. And even if "a few days" is 2 weeks...that still means that over 80% of the time you can't join a server comfortably.

    I'd be curious to see those stats on player acquisition, mostly what is the retention rate, how many of those joining late actually finish the game and how many instead end up inactive soon after.

    I can't share this data, but you are asking exactly the right kind of questions.

    Depends on which part of the "catch up package" the trolls are using in this case.

    Yeah, that's a very good point. I don't know, to be honest. Do you think reducing the money and increasing vouchers (for example train vouchers, since you can't buy trains if you don't have money) would help? Do you see any downsides about this?

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  • Yeah, that's a very good point. I don't know, to be honest. Do you think reducing the money and increasing vouchers (for example train vouchers, since you can't buy trains if you don't have money) would help? Do you see any downsides about this?

    If I understand this

    Since yesterday we are facing on above mentioned server massive invest of fake players on "our" factories. Why do I call them fak players? Hmm, there are a minimum of 15 players with no trains, I really mean zero trains and massive invest of 5-8 millions mainly on our factories.

    from the first post here correctly the "players" just invest the 8 Mio era 5 starting money and do nothing else. I don't think the number of train vouchers needs to be raised. Players get 12 already in era 5 in addition to the ones from the tutorial.

  • Not sure what you are referting to, but I think it depends on what you mean. Sometimes we are 100% sure. If that is what you mean, then yes, this is actually true. If you mean that we can identify 100% of all multis, that's not true and I would be worried if any employee said this.

    Well, it's hard to give some proof. But there ARE/WERE posts, when your colleague claimed to be sure 100% with that tool, especially in the (often deleted) threads about families trapped by the multi rules, when she talks about the "tool".

    You are true, there is NO SUCH tool available for costs that would fit with the budget of Travian.


    To be honest I never thought about this option. What negative and positive outcomes would you expect?

    Cons:

    - players and users always expecting the worst of others, would complain

    - "good" players would have to fight those multis by using the multi avas too, many might not like that, takes time and fun

    - there would be a time of misuse, of trying to take most possible advantage, but at the end players would find out, that quality always wins over quantity ... meaning: you would easier win by good strategy than by controlling a dozen of avatars


    Pros:

    - you would save time and budget for all those multi controlling, complaints, checking and banning

    - players would save time by not having to check multis and trolls etc. as having 2 avas might be part of the game

    - families would no longer have to worry about being banned when

    a) checking the internet activities of their kids by knowing their passwords (they legally have to by law and compulsory control, but must not by RN TOS)

    b) using their family equipment with more freedom and less fear and not always having to completely log out after each engine maintenance

    - I totally believe in the idea that communities are able to control themselves. All social media show, that the freedom of multies is misused, but compared to the billons that do not misuse, it's only a tiny percentage ... I trust in communities and their self control, less rules mean more freedom, more fun, and more ways to find solutions and consent themselves.


    If you need more pros and cons, let me know.


    My example is Linden Labs and their Second Life. When they started 16 years ago, they had a strict NoMulti TOS. They changed that very soon (for several reasons) but as I was an active mentor at that time, I witnessed a short time of more complaints, but then a big decrease of time consuming actions of their disciplinary department. There was a time, when 10 avatars were allowed, today there is no limit. That way I can be Gan, when scripting games, Dan, when teaching, Knight, when boxing and fighting and Uy, when selling stuff. That's my advantage, but I noticed with the allowing of multis, the trolling and spamming soon was totally reduced.

    It was so simple: when the trolls tricked out one avatar to not being able to move, the other one would log in and do the complaint to Linden Labs, taking screenshots for evidence.


    Good thing that we do that then

    Well, if I read carefully through the posts of our Japanese friends, they have the impression that you don't.

    To make your presence known, has pros and cons too. Possibly being spammed is a con, but listening to your Japanese friend I think they feel alone, not being heard, and nobody listening to them ingame.

    Knowing, that there are RN employees (and not only volunteers) online, would give more trust, that you witness what they tell here as their problems.

    Sie sagen immer: "Sei ehrlich und sag, was du denkst."

    Und dann sagt man es und dann gucken sie böse..

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Klabbauter ().