CCP announced without warning today that all Aurum balances below 1000 AUR have been converted into PLEX.
“We are happy to announce that all pilots who had aurum balances outstanding from the PLEX changes have now had their converted PLEX balances delivered as of downtime May 23rd.
In order to protect the market and value of PLEX during the transition, all pilots who had less than 1000 Aurum in their wallets did not have this converted to PLEX when the changes were deployed on May 9th, and were notified that they would receive their aurum balance in PLEX three months after the deployment of the PLEX changes.
After careful consideration and close monitoring of the market, we have decided to reimburse these PLEX earlier.” – CCP Falcon
This comes in the wake of a recent PLEX split which converted all PLEX into 500 “Mini-PLEX” as well as the conversion of all Aurum balances over 1000AUR to PLEX. Before the PLEX split some major market players argued there would be a decline in the price of PLEX, as Aurum values over 1000 AUR would be converted to PLEX and bring extra supply to the market, dampening prices.
What was not accounted for was the massive increase in demand that the PLEX split generated. Old PLEX speculators have been buying up huge supplies of the “New PLEX”. While casual players are now entering the market, trying their hand at PLEX speculation on a small scale for the first time; now that the barrier to entry has been significantly lowered from 1.2billion to only a couple of million ISK for a PLEX.
The market was burning hotter than any time in the recent history this past week, with prices hitting an all time high for one month of game time on Tranquillity, at a rate of increase rarely seen.The decision of CCP to dump the remaining AURUM in people’s accounts into PLEX early clearly comes as an effort to slow this out of control market, which many players rely on to fund their game time in EVE Online. Given that small PLEX balances have few uses, individuals receiving these transfers are likely to bring them to market for ISK to fund other in-game projects, and at least temporarily increase supply. Hopefully dampening the rapid rate of increase for a while and reducing speculator demand.
However, this seems a clear violation of the principle that EVE is a sandbox; built and controlled by the players, who are free to determine the price of all goods in the game through the marketplace. What are your thoughts on CCP stepping in to reign in the out of control PLEX market? Comment below and let me know your opinion.