January 28, 2023

Brighton Journal

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Amazon bans missing Ark Bot accounts, and humans caught in the crossfire

picture: Amazon

Amazon Diablo-like RPG, Missing coffinAnd Over 1.3 million people are playing it at launch. It has since cooled, but there are still tens of thousands of people who log in every week to enjoy it. Or they will, if they are not banned for no reason.

Amazon last week I decided to do a little housekeeping and start a wave of bans targeting ostensibly bot accounts. However, a lot of actual humans fell into bans as well, and what made matters worse is that for Steam players they were deemed to have their Steam accounts banned as well, which is a serious blemish on their public record.

Amazon was quickly notified of this, and over the weekend “was actively working to reverse it for all affected players regardless of whether or not a support ticket was submitted.” For Steam gamers in particular, sweating over the consequences of recording a ban on their account, Amazon says a reversal will not only “remove your game ban,” but also “any marks on your Steam account.”

The company issued this statement over the weekend:

Greetings Heroes of Arcacia,

After the recent wave of bot bans, we have seen an increase in ban appeals from players who were improperly affected by these bans.

We have identified the bug that led to these bogus bans, and are actively working to reverse it for all affected players regardless of whether or not a support ticket is submitted. This will remove the game ban and any flags on your Steam account. We will notify the players when this work is complete. In the meantime, you can still send a ban appeal ticket to customer support so the team can help more quickly restore your account and remove all penalties.

Thank you for your reports and patience while we work to correct this with the affected players.

This was followed up yesterday by a notice that all bans must now be rescinded. The ban follows efforts by developers to fix certain areas of the game that were being flooded with bots, particularly the marketplace and auction house.

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