“Above the trophy case hangs an elvish sword of great antiquity.”
— Zork I: The Great Underground Empire, Infocom, 1980

Anyone that has ever played a computer role-playing adventure game knows that magic items are what the games are all about. I remember how pissed I used to get when the thief in Zork would enter the room and steal my stuff. Well, we’ve come a long way from the single-player, text-based Infocom games that I used to play. Now there are Massively Multi-player Online Role Playing Games (MMORPGs).

Well, South Korean police authorities are starting to pursue online crime, which is typically the theft of magical items and other virtual goods. You see, the players of these MMORPGs are sometimes punked by virtual gangs for their land and possessions, while others are conned into giving their items to strangers willfully.

Why is this a “real” crime? Well, it seems that fanboys without lives have started building up characters and magical items and selling them on Ebay–giving them real-world value. Sadly, there are individuals willing to spend hundreds, sometimes even thousands, of dollars to play an elite character or have the most powerful magical items in these virtual worlds.

Gimme a break! It’s hard enough to fight crime in the real world, where there are physical consequences to say, getting your ass kicked and someone taking your wallet. Does virtual crime really need justice? Maybe, but not by real police!

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