ArenaNet dishes out bans for players exploiting snowflake crafting.
Some Guild Wars 2 players have found that it wasn't just the end of Wintersday that left them lacking any cheer. ArenaNet rolled out a wave of permanent bans after players took to exploiting a crafting and salvaging loop that let them turn a single Glob of Ectoplasm into stacks of them.
The exploit has already been fixed, changing the recipes to require more mats to equal out the difference between those needed to craft the item and what was salvaged from them. For those unaware, the exploit was with the Jewelcrafting discipline. One could make Mithril Earrings using the new snowflake materials added during Wintersday. These required 1 Pristine Snowflake and 1 Glob of Ectoplasm which when salvaged would always give back the snowflake and 1-3 Globs of Ectoplasm.
Some players saw this and immediately went to work, crafting and salvaging hundreds of these earrings in order to gain a nice stockpile of Ectos. Much like the Karma Weapon Exploit that occurred closer to launch, ArenaNet only banned the less than 200 total players that made hundreds or even thousands of these in a clear exploitation of the system. In a quote from an old Reddit post about the Karma Weapons Exploit, Chris Whiteside said how that exploit was a first and final warning for players:
The players we banned were certainly intentionally and repeatedly exploiting a bug in the game. We intended to send a very clear message that exploiting the game in this way will not be tolerated, and we believe this message now has been well understood.
Thus, just this once, we will offer to convert permanent bans to 72-hour suspensions.
This is a first and final warning. Moving forward, please make sure you that when you see an exploitable part of the game, you report it and do not attempt to benefit from it.
If you find something in game that is too good to be true, chances are it is. If you find something like this don't continue doing it, instead report it and wait for word from ArenaNet. On one hand you can make your money a few days later. On the other you get your account permanently banned. Pick a hand.
Matt "Mattsta" Adams