Sometimes it is the thought

This morning, at 9:15 AM to be exact, I got an email from SW:ToR [aside: how do others pronounce that? I’ve been going with “Swo-tor” for some reason] congratulating me on my reaching level 10. It was a nice little blurb with links to more information about what I can look forward too in the near and far-run. It covered everything from choosing an advanced class to participation in warzones. A gamut of helpful of advice. All of it nearly completely useless to me, having done it all before in the beta, but it made me feel a warm fuzzy. I’m not sure what that says about me, that a completely automated process of simulated attention is enough to make me feel like a valued customer. Or does that say more about the gaming industry as a whole and it’s take on the service branch of their field.

I don’t know, early morning ramblings.

Welcome back!

But sorry, your lost item will remain lost.

A recap if you don’t want to read his yellow text:

CSR: How can I help?

SW: My Golden Ankrh is missing. I for sure last saw it in February, not sure about a few weeks ago.

CSR: Let me look into it.

CSR: Sorry, no-can-do.

SW: Any particular reason you can’t restore it?

CSR: Canned response. Anything else?

SW: No.

I get that customer service can only do so much, but when a customer asks for a particular or specific reason, it’s nice to get one. Letting your customer know WHY you can’t do something makes them feel like you aren’t just punching a card, and that there are actual reasons that can’t be overcome. Canned answers as a response to a request for more details is a TERRIBLE way to reply.

I’ve been wrong before…

And I will probably be so again.

That said, I replied to a commenter that one of my guildies may be a dirty exploiter, but my doubts are beginning to rise. There are a couple of reasons for this, which I’ll shortly. Beyond my near rage-enducing frustration at the lovely state of game geometry and the ever dreaded invisible walls, I was able to log onto my Knight after working a bit on my German. From there, I started looking at the whole situation a bit more critically. Now that I had gotten over the “ohmygodmyaccountisbannedandmywholeguildisgone” situation, I started to analyze and examine the whole thing.

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Ahhhh…good times

I’ll say this: the customer support for EA, Mythic/Bioware/whatever-the-hell-they-are-called-now, is very good.

I got an email yesterday morning that my (trial) account had been banned for duping. I was sitting in the middle of extended care at church, so the irony of the situation had a bit more punch than usual. So, I immediately responded to the described email stating my dispute. The automated response I got in return said to expect a turn around in 24 to 72 hours. In reality, it took maybe two hours. My appeal had been reviewed and passed through. My complete lack of duping was acknowledged, a request needed to be made to reactivate my account. However, I apparently DID have some duped items in my inventory that were taken from my guild hall. Apparently someone has been misbehaving…

So, after church, my wife and I went to the in-laws to eat a crazy-good roast for lunch, and drop the little-one off to be watched over while we did some shopping for an upcoming vacation. So, after wrapping up all that, picking up the little one, and getting home, I was greeted to a Steam message from a guildie asking what happened to the guild. It seems as if almost everyone had been banned (we all use the vault for talismans/pots/etc…). So the duped items got buck-shot to all of us. I told the guildie what I did, and what I’ve done to resolve it, and proceeded onto step 2 of the guided directions to make my (trial) account active again. The process went smoothly for the most part, with the CSR’s being incredibly helpful and eager to work with me. The biggest downside is that something is going on that is keeping me from being able to actually log onto a character. I can patch the game, get to the server list, but from there I get disconnected. The issue has been passed up to tier 3, and I am expecting a resolution in 24 to 72 hours from last night, though if the track record is anything to go by, I expect it to happen much more quickly than that.

As to what I think happened: I have my suspicions, I have only been able to talk to two guildies so far, but I wouldn’t be surprised if my hunch lands true. I won’t cast aspersions, but if this kills off the entire guild, I’m going to be a sad, sad panda. I had just transfered my Knight over there to play with these guys, and that may have been a waste of money now. Playing on a Euro server with my hours of play is just not a viable reality if I don’t have friendlies to fall back on. Possibility of reactivating my account is low if my group is gone.

Which may not be a bad thing, because I’m back in EVE online again, and having fun. It may seem silly, but I’m learning how to better read these various star maps with jump bridges explained out, and finding out how to work with jump clones, and transport stuff around. It’s all very menial, busy work, but it feels like what I’m doing is involved and necessary for what my greater plans are. So yeah, if WAR falls flat, and I don’t feel the urge to re-roll or pony up $20-40 again for transfers (or activate my OTHER account with a BG), EVE is always there, happily waiting and ready.

No matter what you take away from this though: remember that EA’s CS has been righteous, and deserve respect and thanks for a job frequently overlooked.