Why would I report bots?

I could literally spend my entire online time in EVE, flying around and reporting bots.

Ratting bots of all kinds, mining bots, mission bots, courier bots, contract bots, market bots, intel bots, alpha bots.

Hotspots are Nullsec and Highsec.

So, why should I do it? What do I get in exchange for this, apart from exactly nothing? Not even information about steps that may have been taken, not to mention a bounty for making this game better.

Should it be my job as a player to keep even the most obvious bots out of the game? Those, who spend the entire month, 20/7 botting missions or mining fleets or ratting? Why is that my job? Why can’t a simple automation detection do it? And if it is my job: why do I have to spend my in-game time clicking “report bot” without any transparency, any compensation or any other involvement?

Furthermore, who can give me proper guarantees that even if “report bot” eventually leads to a ban, the thing will be properly followed through, including removal of all assets, SP and perma-ban of any account involved? Why exactly can’t these things be made transparent to players?

Also, why would I report bots, if I know that the damage done by them to other players, will not be recompensated? For instance, a poor new player eagerly running his or her missions - competing for LP prices (or whatever it is missions give you) against bots. If I should report these bots, I want that the money they made going to the new player and not waiting for them, when the bots come back after their temporary ban.

In short: why would I report bots?

Rather than: accepting that this is Bots Online and decide if I want to compete against Bots.


CCP has already proven on numerous occasions over the years they don’t care about bots.

They allow alliances to bot all day every day and only out a couple token players to “show” they are doing something. The alliances doing the botting didn’t get set to 0 with their botted income and nothing changed.

I reported 20 100% botters years ago and posted absolute proof that they were botting and i was banned from the forums for it (different character) and the players stayed in game.

I no longer have faith that CCP cares about bots as long as they are paying money for subs or buying plex with isk.

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You blow them up, loot them and then report.


Please show how you blow up market bots that never undock from Jita. I am sure it is an exploit.



You don’t have to report them. It’s only nice when you do.

But speaking of time and effort, why would you use your time to make a forum thread about it?


I know. But really, this is boring in most of all cases.

Botting Hel or Nyx, okay. That’s worth the effort.

Every other case: killing bots is like killing NPCs.

I’d say they have proven the exact opposite, they take Botting seriously and do what they can to catch and ban those that do. Most recent I can mention the Yulai event (GM Week, “Wack’a’Bot”).
Yes, CCP rarely share the numbers of how many bots that they ban. There’s a reason for that, and that is to limit the data that bot-developers can use to further improve their bots (make them harder to be detected).

Even for the trained eye, it can be very difficult to spot the difference between a Multiboxer and a Bot. CCP spends a lot of time to investigate if a potential bot is actually a bot. If there is any doubt that a character is Botting they will probably not take action but will continue to monitor it.

You were banned because it is not your place to judge whether or not an account is a bot.


I hate bots as much as the next guy, but the amount of times I’ve been called a bot in local because I dare multibox a Porpoise and a couple of Covetors makes me glad that players aren’t actually in charge of identifying bots.

If they were, every miner and ratter that had the audacity to avoid getting ganked by a roaming gang would find themselves banned within a week.


Because it can create more feedback than “report bot”.
Because it tells me how other real player think about it.+

Because somewhere in my unbreakable optimism I think that CCP could do better and if players speak up, they may just introduce a change that makes reporting or fighting bots player-side a better experience.

More transparency would do, but even better if I knew that assets/ISK that have been botted are re-distributed to actual players who have to compete against bots. This would be proper motivation to report and/or fight them.

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I, too, have been reported as a bot because I sometimes market trade aggressively. I’m not even a multiboxer, just a guy who sometimes will update my market orders every five minutes or less.

The number of people who are SURE another player is a bot when in fact they aren’t is both amusing and somewhat sad.


Agreed. But there are multiboxers and there are bots. Multiboxers are still humans at the computer, doing things humans do. For instance, they sleep. They don’t run courier missions 20 hours a day for weeks or months with 10 chars or more.

Players should not be judge, jury and executioner when it comes to calling other players out. Totally agree on that. However, actual humans are very good at pattern recognition (graphical and otherwise) - if you watch/interact long enough with a suspected bot, you’ll have a high chance to tell if their behaviour is human-like or not.

If done, you can report them. My question is: why. We don’t know what happens to actual bots and to their assets. There is no compensation for the effort done. While bot-users could simply fire up another VM and start botting again, for the bot-hunter it is actual game-time that is lost.

I’ve not done much courier stuff. How do you, as a player, tell whether another player has 10 characters and is running courier missions with them 20 hours a day?

I think CCP understands quite well how much players see botting as a problem and I understood the Yulai event in that context.

But this I don’t understand. I mean, what do the overall banned numbers have to do with evading detection? In my (may be too simple) understanding, evading detection would mean to try and look/react more human, and possibly avoid hot-spots that may catch the eye of the bot-hunter team.

Something like: 1000 bots have been banned and 5 Trillion ISK have been permanently removed from the game. In what way could this help bot developers to further evade detection?

I’m not a fan of this approach. If you apply a number of conservative measures to minimize the chance that you’re hitting a non-botter, the rest will be 99.99% bots. I rather have 10000 bots and 1 innocent banned, than none of them. The one out of ten thousand could be greatly compensated for the mistake afterwards.

But anyhow, what do you think about compensating players for hunting and reporting actual bots?
Shouldn’t there be some incentive, even if it’s just a bit of transparency?

It’s mostly about pattern recognition. As a human, you have a really good feeling for chaos. Human behaviour is at least a bit chaotic - always. If something is not chaotic enough, it catches your attention.

So in this case, you come across a number of chars who act not chaotic enough. They are too similar in their behaviour, do more or less the exact same thing, follow the exact same pattern. In the beginning, this is just a feeling, your pattern recognition tells you something is weird. Then you try to corroborate that, question yourself.

In turn, you do a bit of research about the chars and you pick up any piece of information that you can gather in-game. Scan their cargo, scan their fits. The cargoscan tells you that they are doing courier missions. The fit scans tells you that they are using the same fitting. The creation day of the character tells you that they were all done on the same day. Does it mean that this couldn’t be 10 different players? No, it could be. But, it’s untypically uniform.

Next, you dig deeper, measure times between their actions. How long does it take for them to dock and undock again. Does this number vary enough for a single char? Between the different chars? How about their reaction to unforeseen intervention by other players? Do they react if you bump them or shoot them? Basically you create problems for them, which are easy to solve for humans, but not for an unprepared bot.

Still, you can’t be sure, but I’d say you can narrow it down to 99%. The rest has to be done by CCP and rightly so.

In order to make the effort to narrow down and report bots an interesting gameplay option for actual players, I think there should be higher incentive than CCP’s “we don’t give out any information about what we do”.

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I can’t say with absolute certainty, but this is the goals of a “Bot”-Developer:

  • Automate user-input.
    • Program can run 24/7.
    • Farm/grind game currency/items that can then be sold for in-game currency or real money.
  • Make bot-program undetectable.
    • Accounts are useless if banned
    • Banned accounts can’t run bot.
    • No bot = no money/item generation.

How do you make bot-program undetectable? First and foremost you need to collect data about how the BOT was detected, by a player or by some sort of detection system, then analyze this data to find ways to improve the BOT-program to compensate for flaws in previous versions, release new versions to keep it running (avoiding detection). The more data and the more often data can be collected equals more updates to the programs, more updates equals harder to detect.

Hence why gaming companies, not only CCP, choose to ban botters in big waves rather then immediately when they are caught. Possibly also why they rarely choose to disclose numbers.


Is it a bannable offense to keep a bot’s name for yourself and killing him again and again to steal his bot profits?

Theoretically would it make you an accomplice, but for you to get banned would one have to prove that you’re having a connection to the player or that you somehow knew he was using a bot. And even then would you first get a warning or temp ban and not a perma ban. As long as you don’t talk to one another and you’re not being told about the bot, and don’t happen to share the same IP address, will it be just like innocent game-play.

Hum, on the long term it could be considered as a money laundering scheme.

No probably not, but public naming one on forums will likely get you forum-banned.