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Fraudulent MMOs: Earth 2 – A cash shop without a game

The whole world, fluidly passable, changeable and in complete virtual reality: Earth 2 promises its players paradise, but nothing. We take a very close look at the project and the founder of the first “cash shop without a game”, examining its “investment opportunities” and why players should approach Earth 2 with a healthy dose of suspicion.

It’s every video gamer’s dream: you can walk across the entire land at 1:1 scale, modelled right down to the individual petals. Want to walk through the entire Camino de Santiago from the comfort of your own home? No problem. Has a journey along the Silk Road always been a fond wish of yours? Then go for it! And the best part: you don’t have to experience your adventure in boring 2D. If you have virtual reality goggles, you can travel, modify and explore the known world – in full, glorious 3D and with no load time. Is your computer a little older? Not a problem either, because thanks to the revolutionary art of programming, even weaker computers can show you the full scope of the game without any problems.

And now for the super-duper bonus: Pin Up casino review you can make money on it! Yes, real money. All you have to do is buy one of the fields on Earth2.io, and you already own the Pentagon, the pyramids of Giza, or all of Frankfurt. You can then build houses on the land you’ve purchased, produce resources and ultimately do whatever you want. Grab the best locations today, sell them to other players for real money and get rich! You’d better check it out now, because you don’t want anyone to buy your own house. Oh, and we hear that the Eiffel Tower is also available for purchase. Disclaimer: You can only buy virtual land at the moment, all other features will be available later™. Protect your land today because you don’t want to be left behind when the action starts… do you?

Is your skull cracking yet? Good, because the promise of Earth2.io reads like a checklist for ” First Player Standby ” by seasoned video game veterans: a replica of Earth, exact to the blade of grass, populated by players who invest real money in the game and make real. money from it. Earth 2 is meant to represent the beginning of the so-called Meta-Universe, the cornerstone of the OASIS written by Ernest Kline; a parallel dimension to our physical reality, so to speak. But now it gets interesting, because the following detail in particular immediately raises our cheater alarm sirens: there is currently no game at all.

On Earth2.io, you can only buy 10x10m tiles on copies of land from Google maps for real money, which must be inhabited by you later in the game. The twist: you can swap tiles with other players for real money, and your country’s flag will be displayed on them. Let’s face it: even project Dreamworld, which we discussed in a separate article and which is also highly suspicious, still offers its players something to play. At the time of writing, Earth2 has been around for a year now, purely as an ATM and a platform where virtual land can be exchanged for real money, the value of which is clearly set by the provider and can change without any explanation.

If this all sounds a lot like a pre-paid scam to you, you’re not the only one. In this article we are going to give you all the information we have been able to find on Earth 2. To do this, we’ll first break down the professional background of founder Shane Isaac and his company, explain the exact operation of Earth 2 and its monetisation, and then show you what problems we see with the concept. If you want to learn more about Earth 2 after reading this article, we highly recommend watching the videos from youtubers KiraTV, Josh Strife Hayes and Callum Upton, who make valuable contributions to their work.Discovering Fraud in the Video Game Industry .

Be warned in advance: this article is very long, because Earth 2 is a very complex subject that easily overshadows even such infamous titles as Dreamworld. Get yourself a soothing hot drink and get comfortable. It’s going to take a while.

Founder of Earth 2: Shane Isaac and his company

When faced with the decision to invest your hard-earned money in an early access game, it’s always worth doing a little research. The first look should be at the founder and the team behind him – and in the case of Earth 2 this will be very interesting. At first glance, founder Shane Isaac seems well suited to managing such a gigantic project: “Over 20 years’ experience in development, product development and management” is a strong recommendation! However, observant observers will note that this statement is very general. In the sales industry, such statements are often called ‘confidence in me statements’, which give the buyer a good feeling without laying hard facts on the table.

A glance at his LinkedIn profile reveals that it was created just months before Earth2.io’s launch. Moreover, there are just two entries: managing director of XYZ Social Media since 2016 and CEO of Earth 2 since 2020. The id.XYZ app offers its users chat, calls, some augmented reality features and a social media platform, but it doesn’t seem to have the option to delete its account information afterwards. When we go to the app’s website, we are told that a secure connection cannot be established. Neither the website nor id.xyz Pty Ltd’s Facebook profile is updated.

Shane’s professional history until 2016 is not even listed on LinkedIn, which does not bode well for the founder of such a giant project. Incidentally, the third project we’ve been able to link to Shane Isaac is also not listed on LinkedIn: a patent filed by TipeME Holdings Pty Ltd, which apparently relates to an app that can encrypt user data on a smartphone. In case you’re now wondering what all this has to do with online gaming and building a meta-universe: nothing. None of these ventures are helping Shane create an MMO on a revolutionary scale. In fact, we can’t find anything that even remotely indicates that Shane has any previous experience in game development.

If we dig a little deeper, it becomes very interesting: unlike Dreamworld, Earth 2 has an actual team of at least 18 employees . Including Dillon Seo, one of the co-founders of Oculus! Wolfgang Walk, who sits on the jury of the German Developer Awards and is a regular contributor to The Pod , also worked on the project , but is no longer part of the Earth 2 team .

Oof, those are some pretty big names – is it safe to invest in Earth 2? The answer is a resounding “no”, because there are a few facts about the Earth 2 staff that ring alarm bells among potential investors: firstly, although 18 people are better than Dreamworld’s four employees; they’re not even close enough to get the promised project off the ground.

As a small reality check: we’re talking about a 1: 1 implementation of Planet Earth, possibly also in virtual reality. Secondly, according to Earth2.io, half the staff work as “guards” or “consultants”, including Wolfgang Wok and Dillon Seo. There are only eight (in numbers: eight!) real programmers and game designers on Earth2. They also come almost exclusively from independent developer Five Studios and don’t even always list their work at Earth 2 on their LinkedIn profile. As a reminder, the project has been in development for almost a year.

Five Studios itself consists of employees working from Poland, Spain and Austria; the development company does not own the office building as such. While this is not absolutely necessary these days, it effectively demonstrates the small size of the studio. So far the only game from Five Studios is DRONE., a Unity-based shooter in which the player can assemble their own drones. The graphics are very good for an indie game, and the modular design of the drones also seems fun, as the “mostly positive” reviews prove. However, if you look at recent reviews, they’re “Very Negative” because the developers haven’t submitted an update or any sign of life for over a year. Coincidentally, that’s when Earth 2 hit the scene. To recap: The Metaverse is being created by a small indie team with a half-finished game for Unity in their portfolio so far. If you ask us: pretty unlikely.

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