Over the past few months, a trend involving the purchasing of special codes for additional gaming content had swept across the gaming community. Perhaps the most familiar manifestation of said trend was the buying and selling of codes to obtain Spectrum camo’s for Call of Duty: Ghosts. While these sorts of transactions have occurred sporadically in the past, some would say that the buying & selling of normally-exclusive content has recently become much more prominent than it ever was before. Along with these transactions comes the possibility of a buyer being scammed out of his or her money or being severely overcharged. Recently, there has been a high increase in fraud within the third-party skin-selling business for the popular MOBA, League of Legends.
Several third-party skin reselling sites have been illegitimately acquiring codes for League of Legends limited edition skins and then selling them to the community. While some players get what they pay for when dealing with these sites, some sites do not always hold up on their end of the deal. Some sites will take the buyer’s payment, but sometimes not even send out a code. Not to mention, some sites will charge excessive amounts of monetary assets for an illegitimate code. For example, a Community Coordinator from Riot Games noted in a forum post that one skin was listed for over $1000. Within the same forum post, the coordinator mentioned that the sites do not only sometimes scam the community, but even harm said community because of bot-account usage. Quoting the coordinator, “To make matters worse these services typically use bots. Bots are lame to play with and chew up additional server bandwidth, negatively impacting everyone.” Interestingly enough, the specific details about the bots being in-game or simply used as referrals to the skin-reselling sites are never mentioned.
The coordinator mentions that Riot Games will be combatting the scamming head-on. The publisher is currently working with various payment processors so that fraudulent transactions emerging from the illegitimate sites are no longer processed. Additionally, all previously issued skin codes are going to be deactivated by a process which began yesterday. Any skin or content that has already been redeemed prior to the time of my source’s posting will not be removed from players’ accounts. If a player has a legitimate skin/content code, but has not redeemed it yet, he/she can send a support request along with proof of ownership (a photograph) to Riot Games so that the skin/content can be redeemed to their account. It should be noted that after 07/23/14, Riot Games will no longer be redeeming codes for any reason. Surely, these types of fraud are causing some to ask, “what is the gaming world coming to?” Personally, I like to think that there is some honor among (skin-code) thieves, but evidently that is not always the case. For more information regarding the whole situation, feel free to check out my source that I have linked below.
Lastly, I would like to gratefully thank Cosmic Owl for informing me of this interesting news and encouraging me to write about it.