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Sony Games Your Rights Online

Sony To Delete Virtual Goods 171

New submitter dommer2029 writes "A few years back, Sony bought up a small company running an online collectible card game called Star Chamber: The Harbinger Saga. Two days ago, they announced that the servers will be shutting down on March 29, 2012. All of our virtual collectible cards? Poof. It's not surprising — the user base is small and dwindling — but it's proof that any server-based digital goods you 'own' can vanish on a corporation's whim."
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Sony To Delete Virtual Goods

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  • of course (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 02, 2012 @05:32PM (#39225451)

    Of course the user base for star chamber is dwindling. There hasn't been an expansion since 2007. Collectible games need expansions to survive. Otherwise people get bored and move on.

    Sony Online Entertainment. Where games go to die.

  • Wow... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mcgrew ( 92797 ) * on Friday March 02, 2012 @05:37PM (#39225515) Homepage Journal

    At first glance I was going to say "after XCP, OtherOS, and leaving unencrypted CC info on an internet facing database, what did you expect?" but on re-reading TFS, the data being deleted wasn't collected by Sony.

    Maybe I should point out that "buying" data is stupid, you should buy media? Or that trusting ANY corporation to not be evil is stupid?

  • by 0racle ( 667029 ) on Friday March 02, 2012 @05:38PM (#39225541)
    Virtual Collectable Cards. Did someone think the servers would be online forever so they could 'keep' these bits of data?
  • Bazinga! (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 02, 2012 @05:38PM (#39225545)

    "What kind of world do we live in where a man would take another manâ(TM)s battle ostrich?" Sheldon lamented. What kind of world indeed.

    Brought to you by the virtual goods of the Sony BMG Rootkit!

  • The Cloud (Score:5, Insightful)

    by blueforce ( 192332 ) <clannagael@ g m a i l.com> on Friday March 02, 2012 @05:46PM (#39225637) Homepage Journal
    Precisely why I don't trust Amazon's (or Apple's, or anyone else's) cloud to store books, music, movies, or other media that I purchase.
  • Re:The Cloud (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Rakishi ( 759894 ) on Friday March 02, 2012 @06:03PM (#39225821)

    if they choose to drop some titles or if their license ends, the titles are no longer available.

    So? How many titles do you watch more than once? How much did all those titles cost you? Is having to, gasp, find another source for an occasional title that is dropped seriously going to cost you more than buying all those titles to begin with? Do you really need to have access to 1600 titles at a second's notice?

    Sounds like you've got an irrational hatred of cloud services that is, ahem, clouding your rational judgement.

  • Re:SUCK FONY (Score:5, Insightful)

    by japhmi ( 225606 ) on Friday March 02, 2012 @06:06PM (#39225851)

    Why do you assume it is a nerd?

    He's posting on slashdot.

  • Re:The Cloud (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Sir_Sri ( 199544 ) on Friday March 02, 2012 @06:10PM (#39225903)

    Different problem. Books, movies, etc. have value outside of the cloud service that's hosting them. This game has characters... I'm sorry.. cards, in it, that people have spent time/money to acquire, but they aren't anything outside of the game. I suppose you could print off a PDF of all of the cards in game, but you can't do anything with it.

    You can't just have a gnome deathknight that you refuse to store on WoW because you don't trust blizzard to not shut down the servers. The gnome deathknight doesn't exist without the servers, regardless of how much you did, or didn't pay for it (directly or indirectly), if you prefer a more F2P comparison, ships in Star Trek Online, or some of the tanks in World Tanks are examples of a this. You can get a statue made of your ship, tank, or gnome deathknight, but it's not a ship, tank or DK, it's just a statue of it. Without the world that makes it exist it isn't anything. An ebook is just another variant on book, book on papyrus, book on paper, book from printing press, book in german, book in english, book in electronic format, and without amazon you'd be locked out of the only format of that book you paid for, even though one of the other book formats would still have had value to you. A Magic The gathering card stored 'in the cloud' that you could access anywhere would still have play value if you could take it out of the cloud if the service was to shut down, as you could still play the game without the cloud storage. In this case the game is shutting down, and the data it has can't be 'pulled out' separately.

    Whether or not it's a good idea to pay for virtual cards vs physical ones is a whole other argument.

    A more interesting question is whether or not you are more likely to lose your own data (house fire, hard drive/raid failure etc.) than amazon is. For most people on /. the answer is a definitive no, since we are savvy enough to have various layers of storage for our stuff. But that isn't true of everyone. If all your data is on one computer with one hard drive and it gets stolen/fails/etc you're SOL.

  • by Anubis IV ( 1279820 ) on Friday March 02, 2012 @06:20PM (#39226061)

    Seriously. A person's "ownership" is just as virtual as the goods themselves unless and until they're given something that will maintain its usefulness even in the absence of the service from which it came. Until they get that something, they're merely renting bits, not buying them.

  • Re:of course (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Charliemopps ( 1157495 ) on Friday March 02, 2012 @06:53PM (#39226493)
    ARE YOU INSANE? SOE was the first major MMO publisher to start charging different rates for different levels of content, and then again the first major MMO to have a real money for items auction house. The current disaster that is the MMO market was almost entirely modeled after SOE. Do you ever wonder why MMOs are almost universally $15.99/month? SOE raised their rates almost 10 years ago now, and it stuck. Prior to that they were $10/month. SOE is the root of all evil as far as MMOs go.
  • Re:SUCK FONY (Score:4, Insightful)

    by retchdog ( 1319261 ) on Friday March 02, 2012 @07:10PM (#39226649) Journal

    the money was wasted the moment it was spent... this is just driving home that point.

  • Re:SUCK FONY (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Guppy ( 12314 ) on Friday March 02, 2012 @10:17PM (#39228455)

    Why do you assume it is a nerd?

    He's posting on slashdot.

    On a Friday evening.

  • Re:of course (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <bassbeast1968@gm ... minus herbivore> on Saturday March 03, 2012 @04:34AM (#39229871) Journal

    Have you ever actually TRIED that? I have, I wanted to rescue some of the really funky ass old shareware titles that are damned near impossible to play on modern Windows and give them a new lease on life. i quickly found most of these companies expect something to the tune of 300%-3000% profits or they won't give you the time of day. I wish I had saved the emails so i could post 'em, one company wanted six figures for their "very valuable IP" when we are talking about something that wasn't even up to the level of "Codename:Tenka" but was one of those 50 bazillion Wolfenstein knockoff that came out back when that old thing was a hit and everyone tried to cash in.

    I bet if you were to contact Sony their asking price is right around what you would expect to pay for GTA 3 or NWN, not some nearly dead card trading game. never underestimate the incredible all consuming greed of these people. This is why I'm so against the extended copyrights we now have, thanks to the insatiable greed of the megacorps by the time most things do come out of copyright they won't exist and any source code will have been destroyed decades ago. Thanks to these greedy bastards the history of electronic gaming is gonna be more spotty and incomplete than the fossil record and that's just sad.

When you are working hard, get up and retch every so often.