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Guild Vaults. A sad anecdote with discussion to follow


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#21 ETBrick

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Posted 22 March 2007 - 04:27 PM

A guild bank with the assets I describe is not necessary, agreed. A guild bank though? Some central repository of a guild's 'assets'? Every PvE guild has one. It is necessary. The game is set up that way. Coins/Bijous in ZG. Idols/Scarabs in AQ. Wartorn scraps in Naxx. FR mats in MC. Elementium from BWL. Etc. Every single raid instance is conducive to having a guild bank and that is if individuals completely account for all consumables on their own.

There is no way to 100% safeguard your guild under the current system. I agree that splitting up the items amongst separate people definitely reduces risk and is something we should have done more of. Obviously we (me) fucked up and trusted the wrong guy. Why does it have to stop there. This is a solvable problem. Blizzard can tell what happened, where the cash went. Why arent they? Are they not obligated at all to do more than 'Sorry, tough shit?' These items in question have real value and 50+ people got fucked here.

Blizzard should either alleviate the need for a guild bank, add some real guild bank functionality OR do more to fix things when they break, as they clearly did in this case.

When someone's account gets hacked, who is to blame? My account has never been hacked and I would argue that the person being hacked ought to be more accountable than Blizzard. But Blizzard fixes that, or tries to. I know people who have been 'hacked' and they get their items back, eventually. Why wont they even look into the matter here?


Yes most raid instances prior to TBC had such a mechanic, although currently there has been no examples of this as yet in post expansion raids. Another difference is that most of these items had no tangible value towards the end of pre-expansion WoW(exluding bijous for people who still needed rep/enchants and maybe Elementium if someone wanted a TF/AQ weapon).

From your post I believed that these events transpired after TBC was released, when all of the items in question had almost no value whatsoever. If such an event had occured during the hayday of MC or ZG/AQ when such items were needed on a frequent basis it could be devastating but at this point it is crying over spilled milk.

Also as I alluded to earlier in TBC there have been no such token systems placed in raid instances which solves the problem of needing a central banker for such items as you said.

As for hacked accounts, the difference in this case is that you willingly gave said items to your guild banker, you never willingly gave your account information away to someone who was able to hack your account. The later is a flaw in Blizzard's account security which they take responsibility for by assissting you in character/item retrieval, the former is a flaw in who you trusted with an innordinate amount of materials, which is in no way a fault of Blizzard.

#22 frmorrison

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Posted 22 March 2007 - 04:42 PM

This is a sad story, but I don't see a guild bank option coming out, especially that raids/dungeons don't drop special items anymore.

This is another example why should not put all your eggs in one basket, it is better to spread things out.

#23 Farstrider

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Posted 22 March 2007 - 04:44 PM

If the money is spent, which it almost certainly is, I don't think that Blizzard will countenance adding gold to the in-game economy for nothing. As many people have said, however lamentable the results, you did put yourselves in this position of your own volition.
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#24 Crepe

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Posted 22 March 2007 - 04:50 PM

I'm sure every server has had its tales of Great Guild Bank Ninjas. Hell, I was part of a guild that it happen to them. However, as people have pointed out, there isn't a lot Blizzard can do without getting into the arbitration business (i.e., a legal system) and they don't want to do that.

What I've always thought is best is to split up the components that make up the bank across many officers. In 1.X days, we would have one for MC/BWL mats, one for BoEs, one for AQ20 books/idols, one for ZG mats, etc. That way if one person goes crazy - or you have a guild split or something like that - you don't lose everything. But, this has already been mentioned.

Guild bank necessity is reduced these days, though. We only really require consumables, which can be mailed directly to raiders and/or raid leaders to store on their own and be used as needed. There aren't any big resistance mats stockpiles (the AR cloth crap from Kara doesn't count since it drops like candy) that I can see being needed yet. No massive amount of non-BoP components for legendaries.

The only real blocker I see is providing tanks flasks/ironshields, since many encounters call for them (at least for learning) and I don't really expect prot warriors to grind for anything.

#25 Hotspur

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Posted 22 March 2007 - 05:30 PM

Unfortunately, given the current system, decentralization is the only viable choice, since it mitigates some of the risk. The further inherent problem with the system is that with no current money makers for guilds/raids, it's harder to generate stockpiles of items and/or consumables. While this does lessen the need for a storage system, it also inhibits the abliity of the raid to provide for the raiders, be it mats or repairs cost.

Also, I believe the "needed mats won't drop in the future" about as much as I believe the "We won't be doing as many resistance based fights." If they've used a mechanic one, it'll get used again.

Sadly Hozz, you're not going to get any recourse. I also suspect that some of the overall changes recently suggest that this was their solution, to lessen the need rather than solve the problem. One approach to rebuilding the cash aspect of your bank is to request that guildies send you green items found in questing or withhold all the greens from a few raids. If you DE these and AH the mats, it'll help a bit.

#26 Proeliata

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Posted 22 March 2007 - 06:32 PM

Although I can see the need for a centralized guild bank, if I had to guess why it's not in the game yet, I'd say it's probably because such a thing brings with it a lot of issues for which there is no clear resolution. Sure, it might seem that anything is preferable to having to constantly switch characters, shunt stuff around, update "guild bank contents" threads, but consider these questions:

1) Who is "in control" of the guild bank? No matter who the people are that can withdraw items, who will control them and make sure that they don't do anything wrong? Not to mention that no matter what rules you put on it, the only one with any "real" degree of control over who gets access is the GM.

2) What happens if your guild disbands? Does the bank cease to exist? Does the GM get everything in the bank sent to him? Do the officers? Does it get divided "equally" among all the guild members?

3) One of the arguments being presented here for a guild bank is some sort of "insurance" against greedy/malicious GMs and officers. Seems to me, though, that with bank access there's the presumption that those who can access it are "worthy." If you go on a raid and someone ninjas your loot because you left it on FFA, do you get it back? No. I can't see Blizzard restoring bank items simply because an officer turned out to be a ninja.

4) If a guild bank belongs "to the guild," and the officers decide, after a year of guild bank building, to boot everyone in the guild and start over, what then? The guild still exists, but it's really not the same guild, and the people who got booted don't get any benefit from the contents of the guild bank, even though they worked for it. Again, there isn't really an optimal way of implementing this fairly.

I suppose that it seems to me that although a guild bank would make a lot of things easier, I don't think it would make them any fairer or safer.

#27 Trouble

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Posted 22 March 2007 - 07:51 PM

In real life the only way to have accountability for things like corporations is the law and the judiciary system. These things will not be implemented in the game so you will always end up with situations like this regardless of what systems Blizzard builds into the game. While I would personally like a better guild bank system for the sake of convenience, it can in no way act as a security system.

I would second the opinions earlier in the thread that it would be better for Blizzard to simply reduce the reliance on centralizing assets, which they at least seem to have done so far with the lack of any tokens.

Despite some peoples' beliefs, it IS possible to operate without a guild bank, or at least a very very thin guild bank. My guild progressed through Thaddius before the expansion with the guild bank maxing out at around 3k gold. We had a lot of consumables that were funded by material send-ins but they were distributed pretty much as fast as they were turned in thus there was no large central repository. We did of course have to guild bank things like bijous, coins, frozen runes, etc.

Since the expansion has come out we've barely had a guild bank. I suppose that's not saying much since there hasn't been a whole lot of raiding content, but we've still had to burn a lot of consumables to kill Gruul pre-patch and begin building the expensive resist gear for Hydross. Not only that but there is no way for our guild bank to make gold aside from a few sales of Void Crystals. We operate by a very fluid flow of materials between our dedicated guild members and the people with professions to make what's needed without a large repository ending up in any one person's hands. It's been working out fine for us.

#28 Brista

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 06:28 PM

I've never been a fan of guild banks. I can see that some items like coins and bijoux were clearly intended to be centrally collected and distributed but even there there are alternatives

First off, what's the point of accruing gold in the bank? Why do you need money at all? When do you need to make purchases as a guild? I imagine people usually keep some centralised gold to buy up Dreamfoil and Flasks but it's an inferior system to assigning individual responsibility. To my mind a guild simply does not need to buy anything at all ever after it's designed its tabard

If a player has to bring 5 mana potions to each raid they can shop on the AH, or they can herb or their alt can herb etc. The overall cost for 15 players to furnish 5 mana potions is less than if a centralised fund buys 5 *15 mana potions. It does need either trust or enforcement but that's another matter. (As an aside is there an add-on that checks people's stocks of potions? I know CT has functionalty for checking reagents)

The gold goes somewhere. If you lock up 50K in gold and a further 100K in assets that's a lot of gold that could have been used to provide consumables for progress. You banked it so you didn't get the progress, you got overloaded mules instead. Straight trade-off.

Many raiders complain that it's simply too hard to keep up with the consumable cost of raiding. As a guild they have (in this example) earned 150K gold that could have been shared among the players for them to make money on rather than hoarded. Gold banked is healers without mana

Individual players tend to be much more efficient at realising capital than guild bankers. Raid roll an unwanted BOE epic. You can bet it will be on the AH later that evening for a fat sum with some spam in trade channel to help the sale. Mule it to a guild bank and it will receive less individual care. Either it will be listed cheap because it's a pain when auctions fail if you have dozens of auctions or it may be unsold, sitting on a mule for months until new content or dishonest officers remove its value

Even crafter reagents like MC cores can be raid rolled and auctioned off. Instead of saving reagents to make crafted items the players who need them buy the reagents and get a combine done by a guild crafter. This approach is probably unwise when you're first gearing up tanks but after that just get the stuff sold, and get cash in people's pockets. Then if a Rogue wants a Lava Belt he can buy/trade the cores off other raiders or the AH

At the end of the day if raiders earn loot then muling it is unfair on them since they will often receive no gain from the item they caused the program to generate. Keep banking minimal!

#29 Veng

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 06:43 PM

I've never been a fan of guild banks. I can see that some items like coins and bijoux were clearly intended to be centrally collected and distributed but even there there are alternatives

First off, what's the point of accruing gold in the bank? Why do you need money at all? When do you need to make purchases as a guild? I imagine people usually keep some centralised gold to buy up Dreamfoil and Flasks but it's an inferior system to assigning individual responsibility. To my mind a guild simply does not need to buy anything at all ever after it's designed its tabard

If a player has to bring 5 mana potions to each raid they can shop on the AH, or they can herb or their alt can herb etc. The overall cost for 15 players to furnish 5 mana potions is less than if a centralised fund buys 5 *15 mana potions. It does need either trust or enforcement but that's another matter. (As an aside is there an add-on that checks people's stocks of potions? I know CT has functionalty for checking reagents)

The gold goes somewhere. If you lock up 50K in gold and a further 100K in assets that's a lot of gold that could have been used to provide consumables for progress. You banked it so you didn't get the progress, you got overloaded mules instead. Straight trade-off.

Many raiders complain that it's simply too hard to keep up with the consumable cost of raiding. As a guild they have (in this example) earned 150K gold that could have been shared among the players for them to make money on rather than hoarded. Gold banked is healers without mana

Individual players tend to be much more efficient at realising capital than guild bankers. Raid roll an unwanted BOE epic. You can bet it will be on the AH later that evening for a fat sum with some spam in trade channel to help the sale. Mule it to a guild bank and it will receive less individual care. Either it will be listed cheap because it's a pain when auctions fail if you have dozens of auctions or it may be unsold, sitting on a mule for months until new content or dishonest officers remove its value

Even crafter reagents like MC cores can be raid rolled and auctioned off. Instead of saving reagents to make crafted items the players who need them buy the reagents and get a combine done by a guild crafter. This approach is probably unwise when you're first gearing up tanks but after that just get the stuff sold, and get cash in people's pockets. Then if a Rogue wants a Lava Belt he can buy/trade the cores off other raiders or the AH

At the end of the day if raiders earn loot then muling it is unfair on them since they will often receive no gain from the item they caused the program to generate. Keep banking minimal!


You put way too much faith in individual players, overlook the fact that not everyone plays forever (what, are you going to ask someone who quits for their gold back so it can be redistributed?), and really don't understand how guild banks were used (pre-TBC at least).

Just an example, we spent 2-4k gold per week throughout Naxx on various stuff, used the materials on the banks to supply extra potions in the event that we needed them. Not sure if our bank was similar to anyone elses, as I don't think we managed it as well as we probably could have, but we spent atleast 20-30k gold overall in Naxx.

In addition, things such as MC BoE's, and materials that were outdated were sold efficiently with little effort, with no risk of gold disappearing from their sales when people quit, etc. Not sure if you've ever lead a guild, or ran a guild bank, but what you say really wouldn't be practical.

#30 Brista

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 07:32 PM

really don't understand how guild banks were used (pre-TBC at least).

Just an example, [example of using guild bank to buy potions in the way I described].


Erm, I don't think you read my post :-)

I have run a guild but I really don't think that matters

What exactly is it your guild bank did that was worth the members of your guild being several hundred gold poorer? Could they have done it themselves individually and severally or did they absolutely need to be mothered?

#31 Veng

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 07:47 PM

Erm, I don't think you read my post :-)

I have run a guild but I really don't think that matters

What exactly is it your guild bank did that was worth the members of your guild being several hundred gold poorer? Could they have done it themselves individually and severally or did they absolutely need to be mothered?


Except, it wasn't an example of what you posted. Everyone brought their own pots, with no guild bank help. However, if we were learning something, the bank would bring a surplus of pots so that we could continue attempting even after individuals ran out, as well as the necessities such as Stoneshields, greater armor, tank flasks etc.

Maybe I was just thrown by you saying

Why do you need money at all? When do you need to make purchases as a guild?

because there is no way that dividing money / materials up amongst guild members would have allowed us to complete Naxx as efficiently as having it in a centralized bank. And no, not every member could have done it individually, nor can you really expect them to.

#32 Narugh

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 08:00 PM

Erm, I don't think you read my post :-)

I have run a guild but I really don't think that matters

What exactly is it your guild bank did that was worth the members of your guild being several hundred gold poorer? Could they have done it themselves individually and severally or did they absolutely need to be mothered?


I'd hate being the MT in that guild. "I hope you have farmed all your resistance gear and have enough flasks for four raids this week."

#33 Brista

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 08:20 PM

I'd hate being the MT in that guild. "I hope you have farmed all your resistance gear and have enough flasks for four raids this week."


Well it wasn't quite that bad. Requirements like that we met on a rota (and I should qualify that it was not WoW but a different MMO)

Division of labour isn't really hard my point was more about the locking up of capital. The value of anything that is banked is nil until it gets used or sold. It's not just the security angle that was stressed in the original post here. Economically these typical huge WoW raid guild banks with great stocks of rare and valuable resources are a drain on the economy of the raid guild

#34 Hozz

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 08:21 PM

There is definitely room to argue to what extent you need a guild bank. I do not think you can argue the fact that you do need one though. That someone in the guild, or multiple someones, has/have to be trusted with some amount of assets and that those assets have a worth.

In our case, clearly we fucked up. We banked too much, did not distribute it back to members fast enough and, most of all, trusted the wrong guy.

I still do not see how Blizzard can have a system that requires a guild bank and then on the other hand claim no responsibility for the repercussions of such a system. And maybe they came to a similar realization, as many people have commented, there is less of a need for centralized banking in WoW 2.0. At least so far.

Still, these items have real world value and I think it could easily be argued that a crime was committed. I dont mean to be overly dramatic and of course its not the same as if 50 peole had their wallets stolen, but we lost things that have real world value and we know who took them. Blizzard ought to do something about it. Its a black and white issue, there is no grey area here.

#35 groktar

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 08:28 PM

I'd hate being the MT in that guild. "I hope you have farmed all your resistance gear and have enough flasks for four raids this week."


Exactly. Supplying my own stoneshields and elixirs for a night of learning attempts on Nightbane was taxing enough. Supplying the same consumables every night for a week of hard wiping plus flasks? I don't even want to think about it.

#36 Veng

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 08:40 PM

Economically these typical huge WoW raid guild banks with great stocks of rare and valuable resources are a drain on the economy of the raid guild


Again, you assume a lot about "typical" guild banks. Even lower end guilds that I've encountered manage their guild banks fairly well. The horror stories like the one in this thread are the minority, not the majority.

#37 Vinsent

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 08:53 PM

There is definitely room to argue to what extent you need a guild bank. I do not think you can argue the fact that you do need one though. That someone in the guild, or multiple someones, has/have to be trusted with some amount of assets and that those assets have a worth.

In our case, clearly we fucked up. We banked too much, did not distribute it back to members fast enough and, most of all, trusted the wrong guy.

I still do not see how Blizzard can have a system that requires a guild bank and then on the other hand claim no responsibility for the repercussions of such a system. And maybe they came to a similar realization, as many people have commented, there is less of a need for centralized banking in WoW 2.0. At least so far.

Still, these items have real world value and I think it could easily be argued that a crime was committed. I dont mean to be overly dramatic and of course its not the same as if 50 peole had their wallets stolen, but we lost things that have real world value and we know who took them. Blizzard ought to do something about it. Its a black and white issue, there is no grey area here.



II’m not so sure its as black and white as you make it out to be. Not at all to make light of your situation at all which sounds like it sucks.

But from Blizzards end this is what they know.

Character X on your account, has 5k or more worth of gold and high end materials.
Character X mails all of this to character Y on crazy mans account.
The account with Character X quits the game, I assume canceling their account.
Months pass
Character X's account is reinstated.
Character X petitions blizzard asking that their mats be returned.

This could very easily be a scheme between you and character Y to produce tons of extra gold. Its not like any amount of chat logs could determine this to be true or false. You could be the crazy one, who quit and now suddenly want all your stuff back. For all you know he could have spent all that gold buying 1000 mounts and have no way of giving it back. or worse buying inflated AH grays and now the gold is distributed across the server.

Blizzard cant in good conscience give you your stuff back because it could potentially ruin the economy which affects lots more players than you and yours.

I’m not saying your lying, or that your story isn’t tragic, but Blizzard simply cannot take your word for it and give you your stuff back.

This is the reason that I cannot see anything more than a token guild back system implemented. Like a super mail slot, but really if you mail all your crap to some random guy and he doesn’t give it back, that’s not blizzards fault, and not theft. Because there are people who would take advantage of a full re-imbursement system then it cannot be implemented.

Hacking is different as in theory no gold leaks into the economy. Person X logs onto your account, shards/sells all your gear and mails it to person x.

Blizzard finds out, banns person X (thus removing the extra gold) and then gives you your stuff back. In fact I hear they are not even doing that any more, but simply giving you a green kit of gear for your class, which I can see being the case since gold laundering though the AH could happen much faster than they could respond to.

I hate to be the bleak one, and I really do wish things were different but the reality of the situation is that there is little that blizzard could do to make things right by you without opening the potential to do very very wrong by lots of others.

#38 roquer

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 09:28 PM

Is it possible that he DID mail you the 100,000 gold, and blizzard flagged it and stopped the transfer?

If you know the approximate time the money was sent, and from what character, you a GM can look into the details

#39 Ochiba

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 10:18 PM

There is definitely room to argue to what extent you need a guild bank. I do not think you can argue the fact that you do need one though. That someone in the guild, or multiple someones, has/have to be trusted with some amount of assets and that those assets have a worth.

In our case, clearly we fucked up. We banked too much, did not distribute it back to members fast enough and, most of all, trusted the wrong guy.

I still do not see how Blizzard can have a system that requires a guild bank and then on the other hand claim no responsibility for the repercussions of such a system. And maybe they came to a similar realization, as many people have commented, there is less of a need for centralized banking in WoW 2.0. At least so far.

Still, these items have real world value and I think it could easily be argued that a crime was committed. I dont mean to be overly dramatic and of course its not the same as if 50 peole had their wallets stolen, but we lost things that have real world value and we know who took them. Blizzard ought to do something about it. Its a black and white issue, there is no grey area here.


This is absolutely not a black and white issue and I don't see a reason for Blizzard to step in.

The question is really, who did they belong to? There's really no way for Blizzard to police it. Just because the guy leaves the guild with a bunch of potions, mats, or money on his character means Blizzard needs to stop him and say "hey little fella, do you have a receipt for that?" Like it or not, WoW is not a real-world economy. If you pile all the best loot on your MT, like many guilds did for MC, and the tank leaves the guild, does Blizzard step in there too? Is progression gear "guild assets"? What about that enchanter you gave all the best recipe drops to because they were an officer or had the best attendance? When he server transfers do you say, hey Blizz, return our recipe investment?

Fact is you have to manage your assets better and move on. It's a rotten thing to go through, and you may have a vendetta against the guy, but it sounds like he's already in enough trouble in real life.

Also, to be honest, this is probably the best time to get your guild bank ripped off if it's gonna happen. I can't really think of anything besides potions and herbs that the guild needs heavily in TBC at this time - no cores, frozen runes, yadda yadda. My guild's bank doesn't even have herbs or potions in it because almost every member is alch and/or herb, or uses an alt for it. So really it just comes down to some discretionary gold.

#40 Azurai

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Posted 23 March 2007 - 10:39 PM

I think another type of RAID theory can be applied here... The key is redundancy. make each officer have a bank character and delegate the guild's wealth to those. If you have a trusted core group of officers it would be fantastically bad luck to have 50%+ of them suddenly turn on you and take the wealth they were safeguarding.

Losing an officer would hurt, sure, but at least then the guild bank would survive.

If you put all your eggs in one basket...




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