I’ve been a gaming journalist, albeit a rather unknown journalist, for some years now mainly covering MMO games and spending much of my time playing them. In that time I’ve never received a ban, a temp ban or so much as a warning since I tend to follow the rules of the land.
However it seems En Masse is quick to label me a rule-breaker and has taken it upon itself to ban the very account they gave me for free, a Collector’s Edition account at that, for what seems like a completely ridiculous reason.
I haven’t played TERA since I wrote my review for it over a year ago, however, when they announced their LevelUp promotion where you can get a instant level 58 character I decided to log into my old account and create a new character.
I figured it’s been some time since the launch, the game has changed and I’ll go check out the endgame content since I only got to level 41 in my review. I then checked my account a few days later to find out it’s been banned. WTF?
To understand why I was banned we have to go back about a week ago.
Being a gamer and gaming journalist I have lots of online friends that also play these games and about a week or two ago one of my friends contacted me saying his account got banned. He said he was hacked and that when he contacted support he was told it was permanently banned. He wanted me to check out the support tickets on the account as he believed it was an unfair ban and perhaps I could write about it.
So I decided to log into his account via the TERA website, however when I did that I got an “authenticate device” message asking to authorize my PC. I of course didn’t want to do that because I didn’t want my PC linked to his account so I declined and logged out.
Fast forward to the present when I contacted En Masse support asking why my account was banned. This is the reason they gave me.
You have been banned permanently for being linked to a large money trading operator that has been banned previously, multiple time and this account will not be un-banned.
At this point I knew that either my friend wasn’t telling me the truth and he was involved in gold selling/buying OR whoever hacked his account used it to transfer massive amounts of gold around.
Regardless of which it is, it should still be very simple and clear that my account has no involvement at all.
1) There is no activity on my account for well over a year
2) I never authenticated my PC from the website when I logged into his account
3) I never logged into the actual game with his login info
All three of those should make it blatantly clear I have nothing to do with gold selling. The fact my first unban request has been flatly denied with what I can only assume little to no investigation is a joke.
Furthermore does this ban mean I’m banned for life? My IP address is now tied to some gold seller so even if I create a new account will TERA ban me again?
It is quite shocking how poor their support has been thus far and how quick they are to ban someone with little to no evidence they ever did anything wrong.
Keep in mind this is not a warning or a temp ban, this is a permanent ban when I literately have not done anything within the game for over a year. I have one login on my account and that was to create the new character for the LevelUP promotion. The second login, if you can even call it that is to my friend’s account, which I declined when I was asked to “authenticate” my PC.
I’m now waiting for a reply to my second unban request. I still believe that common sense will prevail, but I’ll keep this updated.
UPDATE: After numerous attempts to try to convince TERA support, I’ve been told not only is my TERA account permanently banned, but I’m banned from TERA for life! That’s right, I cannot play TERA on North American servers ever again for simply logging into a friend’s account via the TERA website.
This basically means at the next gaming convention if I logged into the WIFI and into by banned TERA account, anyone who’s also playing TERA should get banned since they would share an IP address with me as it only takes 1 matching IP for a life-time ban. Keep in mind it doesn’t matter if you’re innocent, my account was inactive for about 16 months, just the single shared IP is all TERA support needs to ban you and your account for life.
Kudos to En Masse for the strictest and stupidest ban policy in gaming.
UPDATE 2: It appears I’m going to get a re-review of my account. Below is the latest update I got from En Masse support and it seems my online friend was either involved in massive amount of gold buying/selling or the person that hacked his account was,
To offer a more clear explanation of the ban — The person who you were/are associated with is someone we’ve chosen (based on his countless egregious ToS violations) to completely nuke from TERA. As such, any account/device associated to this player in pretty much any way will receive an immediate perm ban.
I’m hoping that En Masse will see I am not involved, after all I had logged into the website AFTER the account was already banned, which even further shows it would have been impossible for me to be involved in any illegal activity. Now I’m just waiting for what I’m guessing will be their final decision.
UPDATE 3: I’m happy to report that En Masse has decided to unban my account after re-evaluating all the evidence. My level 58 character that was created for the LevelUp promotion is also there, so I’m very happy and excited to check out the game over the weekend.