April 12, 2007

SOE hires IGE

David Christianson, former Vice President of Business Development for IGE, will now be the Vice President of Business Development & International Operations for Sony Online Entertainment. SOE's official press release states that "prior to joining SOE, Christensen served as Vice President of Business Development for IGE where he drove the company’s relationships with the massively multi-player publishing community."

This news is beyond interesting. SOE already runs Station Exchange servers, which basically legitimizes the practice of Gold Farming, Power Leveling, and Real Money Trade(RMT). The ramifications of such are heavily debated, but I have yet to find a non-SOE voice that actually believes services such as Station Exchange are good for a game and it's community.

This may seem like just a RMT issue to most people, but a little research into IGE will show a slew of unethical, and questionable business practices. It would not be surprising to wake up tomorrow, and see IGE being investigated on money laundering charges. Why would SOE even think about hiring a former IGE employee; let alone an employee so entrenched within the company? This hiring speaks volumes about the business politics of SOE and their money first mentality.

This strongly supports my opinion that SOE just wants your money. Everything they can charge you for; they will. They don't give a damn about you as a player, and I doubt they ever will. Sorry Grimwell, I had to say it.