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blankseplocked Guide to selling, buying, using game time codes (GTCs & PLEXes)
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Leora Nomen
Posted - 2007.09.17 06:28:00 - [1]

Edited by: Leora Nomen on 23/11/2009 07:37:09
Game time codes allow players to:

--> Exchange real world currency for ISK in an a way that complies with the EULA. Some players find themselves bored of the ISK grind or discover that they cannot play enough hours to make the ISK that they need. Some would like to buy an already trained character with ISK instead of spending a year waiting to train up skill they want to have. CCP provides a way for these players to get the ISK they need by allowing them to trade game time codes for ISK.

--> Not pay any real money for your accounts. Players have the option of purchasing a game time code (GTC, PLEX) from others thus paying for their EVE subscription entirely with ISK.

WARNING: While buying ISK through purchase of GTCs is allowed, buying ISK from various websites and other players is against the EULA. If you purchase ISK in any other way, GMs will remote it from your wallet leaving your character in negative balance. With negative wallet your character will not be able to update clone, buy or sell anything on the market, open up trade windows, start any manufacturing or research jobs, in summary it will be very similar to being banned from the game.

Commonly Asked Questions and Answers

1. Where can I purchase GTCs?
Game time codes can be purchased from ETC retailers and EVE Store. Shattered Crystal is an especially popular website. To find other retailers go to "My Account". Some other sources are listed in responses to this thread.

2. How do I receive my codes?
ETC retailer websites send codes via e-mail. You'll have to read more details on their website about delivery procedures. EVE Store mails cards to the buyers via regular mail.

3. What are the current going rates for the codes?
60 day codes sell for $34-35 and can be exchanged for 550-650 million ISK
30 day PLEXes sell at 280-350 million ISK per unit.
Average prices in ISK go up and down depending on supply and demand at any given time.

4. Do I need to own a credit card to buy GTCs?
You don't need to own a credit card. Many ETC retailers will accept payment from PayPal for which you only need to have a bank account. If you want to subscribe to the game rather than buy codes to sell for ISK using a check, money order, direct debit, bank transfer, CertaPay, Western Union, or another option there is also the Pay-by-Cash service.

5. What are PLEXes?
PLEX stands for 30 day Pilot License Extension. Currently players who purchase 60 day codes have an option to break the code up into two 30 day codes called PLEXes. The advantage of PLEXes is that they can be sold on regular EVE market or contracts in game. To break up 60 day codes into two 30s press Ecs key and you will see the option to do it on the window that pops up. PLEXes cannot be transported out of the station where you have them, but they can be applied to an account from the assets window so you do not actually have to travel to pick them up.

6. Where can I sell/buy codes for ISK?
Here: Timecode forum
Players now also have the option of breaking up a 60 day code into two 30 day codes called PLEXes and selling these on regular market or contracts. Another place to advertise or buy your codes is the "Other" trade channel.

7. Are game time codes same as game time cards?

8. If I pay for subscription of a trial account with a game time code before the trial period is over, will it turn my trial account into full account?
Yes it will, the change however will take some time to register.

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2007.09.17 06:34:00 - [2]

Edited by: Leora Nomen on 23/11/2009 07:39:43

9. If I have an expired account, either trial or previously subscribed, can I use a 60 day GTC to activate it? Can I use a PLEX to reactivate?
You will still be able to log in to "My Account" and accept an offer from a GTC seller or apply a code yourself. If you're buying a code from another player, the receiving character on inactive account needs to have enough ISK in wallet. Unfortunately it is not possible at this time to use PLEXes to reactivate suspended accounts, only 60 day codes.

[b10. I have 10 days left of my subscription/trial time and I apply a 60 day GTC to it, will I have 60 days or 70 days total?
The time will be added to the time you have left, whether you have a trial account or subscribed account. If the time is not added make sure to petition it.

11. ...I have a trial account and I cannot post in GTC forum!!!11oneleven....
Trial accounts cannot post in GTC forum or Other trade channel. You can directly convo GTC sellers ingame or ask a friend to help you get a GTC.

12. So how do I actually get ISK for my codes?
To sell a 60 day GTC first make a post on GTC forum, specifying how many codes you have and price in title. Once someone responds go to "My Account" - "Account Services" - "Securely Sell EVE Time Code". Enter all the required information and click on "Next". An ETC sell order is created. It will last 48 hours and can be canceled at any time. The buyer will be notified of this order with an email. The buyer has to go to his own "My Account" page and look under "Common Tasks" to accept the offer. At this point ISK will be deposited into seller's account and buyer's play time will get extended. Read more about secure GTC trade here. Selling PLEXes is same as selling any other items in game.

13. Can I scam with game time codes?
Scamming with actual codes is not allowed and will lead to permanent ban of your account. This includes offering to sell inactive codes or purchasing codes by the way of tricking the seller and not paying anything for them. Scamming with PLEXes is allowed as PLEXes are considered to be an in game virtual item and as will all items and ships in EVE scamming is permitted.

14. So, does CCP actually sell ISK for real world money?
No, CCP does not sell ISK. The ISK comes from another player who has been playing many hours to earn it in game. ISK switches hands but no more is instantly created out of nowhere.

15.[/b] Some dude named sdkjfhkjy is advertising a website which offers to sell me ISK. Should I buy from him?
No. If you buy from him the GMs will take bought ISK from your account and may even ban you. Farmer ISK may seem cheaper at first, but it will be definitely be more expensive after GMs take it from you so you end up paying cash to farmers for nothing.

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2007.09.25 01:28:00 - [3]

Edited by: Leora Nomen on 15/12/2007 23:48:28
18. Why is buying ISK from ISK farmers bad? Doesn't CCP allow people to get ISK from their real life cash anyhow? I don't understand why ISK sales are prohibited.
There are many reasons why the presence of ISK farmers in this game is bad for the game, CCP, and all of the subscribers. A lot of debate has been going on about this topic in other sections of the forum. Many players feel that it is unfair to allow people to gain advantage in a game by putting their credit card into use. But there will always be people trying to buy in-game resources with cash and allowing them to use the GTCs is better than allowing ISK sales in game for the following reasons:

--> If ISK farming is made legal in game, it will turn from EVE Online into Farmbot and Spambot Online. Farmer numbers will multiply. They will form some of the richest corps and alliances in game powered by people who will play 12h a day and bots that can play from dt to dt. The farmers will attempt to take over all of the lucrative space in game, such as 0.0 space, and they can play just as well as a regular player (and even better because their wages will depend on it). A real player who plays EVE Online for fun will not be able to compete with them and will have to fight them for resources or buy them from farmers for cash.

--> ISK farmers strip the game from its resources, competing with you and making these resources unavailable to you. Then farmers spam your mail and chat channels trying to sell these resources back to you for cash. Gathering resources they use methods that are unfair and against the rules. They run macros, share accounts, and engage in scamming. They play EVE as their job. There is no way a regular player can compete with them.

--> ISK farmers use all kinds of illegal methods to obtain their ISK. They have been scamming with character sales and game time codes. They have been hacking into accounts and using keyloggers (link 1, link 2). With these activities they have hurt many players. But they do not care, because if they ruin this game they have dozens of other games they can farm.

--> ISK farmers do not do anything to improve the game. CCP on the other hand works on decreasing lag, coming up with new game features, answering petitions and rebalancing the game, in summary keeping it running. By buying game time codes players give money to CCP, the company that maintains and improves this game. By buying ISK from farmers players give money to people who hurt the game.

--> ISK farmers inject cash into EVE economy. An average player spends about 2-3 hours a day playing EVE and only a portion of that time he spends making ISK. ISK farmers work in 12 hour shifts and each of them is capable of making as much ISK as 5-10 regular players. This kind of gaming has negative effects on EVE economy for regular players.

--> Game time codes allow people to pay for the game with ISK. This means people can play EVE even if they cannot afford it. This system also allows players to hold more accounts than they would otherwise be willing to pay for. In turn this increases revenue for CCP and makes them happy and willing to work further on their game.

Posted - 2007.09.25 07:38:00 - [4]

Very useful. Thanks for making this guide. I often wondered how that all worked.

1 simple suggestion: drop "illegal" & "legal". No laws apply here. It is simply against CCP EULA or "allowed" by CCP.

Akita T
Caldari Navy Volunteer Task Force
Posted - 2007.09.25 08:08:00 - [5]

Well, when refering to in-game assets (characters, ISK, items), the EULA "kind of" is law, since all of them are PROPERTY of CCP (you agree to that when you first start up the EVE client on a PC), and you just "lease" their use.
Of course, you might try to challenge the legality of the CCP EVE EULA, but good luck with that (meaning, I don't see it happening).

So, technically, you could use the terms "legal" and "illegal" loosely, referring to things that are "allowed/disallowed" contractually, EULA-wise.

Aphro Sia
Imperial Academy
Posted - 2007.09.29 15:05:00 - [6]

Still missing an important answer on a question i tend to ask on a regulary basis (no answer yet)

a) Are Game Time Codes stackable?

b) if i applied a game time code and have 15 days left to expire and i add another 30d gtc now, do the 15 days get vanished or stacked to 45days?

Gavriel Black
Posted - 2007.09.29 15:41:00 - [7]

Edited by: Gavriel Black on 29/09/2007 15:41:08
Originally by: Aphro Sia
Still missing an important answer on a question i tend to ask on a regulary basis (no answer yet)

a) Are Game Time Codes stackable?

b) if i applied a game time code and have 15 days left to expire and i add another 30d gtc now, do the 15 days get vanished or stacked to 45days?

yes and stacked

Posted - 2007.10.08 04:20:00 - [8]

You know, I'd really like to agree with this and buy some game time codes, but these websites want your phone number to call you. I don't want some fat drooling nerd to have my phone number. If someone can give me a similar website that sells game time codes and doesn't call you, let me know.

Viscount Stoko
Posted - 2007.10.08 09:18:00 - [9]

Originally by: Nuzz604
You know, I'd really like to agree with this and buy some game time codes, but these websites want your phone number to call you. I don't want some fat drooling nerd to have my phone number. If someone can give me a similar website that sells game time codes and doesn't call you, let me know.

Crikey! It's only a one-time thing you know the call lasts a few seconds and its only for your own good. It's not like they are going to phone you every day and ask to sniff your knickers! Rolling Eyes

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2007.10.08 18:00:00 - [10]

Edited by: Leora Nomen on 08/10/2007 18:00:21
Originally by: Nuzz604
You know, I'd really like to agree with this and buy some game time codes, but these websites want your phone number to call you. I don't want some fat drooling nerd to have my phone number. If someone can give me a similar website that sells game time codes and doesn't call you, let me know.

It's a business, and as any business goes they have to deal with plenty of people who will try to scam them. They have to take certain precautions and it is only a one time deal. Also, I'm sure they don't discriminate on gender and employ some hot female customer service representatives as well Wink

Posted - 2007.10.08 19:46:00 - [11]

Edited by: Nuzz604 on 08/10/2007 19:52:53
Edited by: Nuzz604 on 08/10/2007 19:51:33
Give me a bloody break! That's the biggest load of BS I have ever heard. Really. After 10 years of doing business with e-commerce companies of all shapes and sizes, I have never had to deal with it before. Besides, I already found a few places that aren't so intrusive. I don't know how they do things in your country, but here in the United States, our businesses value our customers (except for wal-mart).

Do you understand? I don't want to hear your damn voice, and don't try to lure me with a "hot female representative" -- do you think I am a virgin and get turned on by that? Now get some sensibility before I decide to sell my own cards --at cost-- as a hobby. No phone number required.

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2007.10.08 20:47:00 - [12]

Edited by: Leora Nomen on 26/05/2008 17:29:00

Yes, they waste their money and employees' time to make phone conversations with you because some drooling nerd kid really desires to have your phone number, since spending his time talking to you is number one item on his fantasy list. I was just poking fun at you with "hot female representatives". Seriously, I have no idea why they require phone conversations, but if it was unnecessary they would long stop the practice as it would make their business inefficient and wasteful in money and their workers' time - true? There are probably a few people like you who mind these checks or can't do them for whatever reason, but many others have no problems so they get through to majority of their customer base. (Shattered Crystal is btw based in United States)

Mind sharing what is this place that you found that requires no phone confirmation? I'll add it on to the guide for players who have same concerns.

If you buy at Shattered Crystal, they will call you in 5-15 mins and ask you questions like:
- What street your street is connected to?
- What's the nearest highway? park? hospital? college?
So have google maps open :) If you do not answer these questions in a satisfactory for them way they will ask for copies of your ID and like a utility bill as proof of address. Battleclinic does not make calls, however they restrict how many codes you can buy. I believe first time customers can only purchase three.

Posted - 2007.10.08 23:11:00 - [13]

Every one of these places either price gouges or is sold out. - 30d for $26 - 15 Euros = $21 - 30d for $18 - 30d for $15 but sold out -- There are codes for sale here but usually $18 unless you want them to call you

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2007.10.09 02:01:00 - [14]

Thanks, I've added a mention as I've reached the character limit in my original post.
It might not be price gouging but simply the added expense of doing business without any verification checks of their customers. If those other sources get scammed more often, they just add this cost of business on top to their prices. I really see no other reason to them to have higher prices unless they are forced to do it, because they lose a lot of their customers by selling at higher prices and there are many other places that sell codes cheaper making them less competitive in comparison. So it is probably just added cost of doing business in less secure way.

Posted - 2007.10.09 05:50:00 - [15]

well I hate to say it but it looks like I might just end up going for it. Since they are officially endorsed by CCP and seem to be a larger company I am less afraid of it now. I'll see if battleclinic gets any in stock the next few days first.

Posted - 2007.10.09 17:36:00 - [16]

well it looks like mobiusgames calls you also. has game cards right now!!!

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2007.11.03 17:30:00 - [17]

Prices on codes have been updated.

InterSun Freelance
The Forsaken.
Posted - 2007.11.09 18:58:00 - [18]

So, you cant buy without a phone call?
I dont have a phone :/

So is that it?
Or are they satisfied with phoning you up at work?

And thanks for the OP, cleared up a lot for me.

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2007.11.10 21:23:00 - [19]

Originally by: Apocryphon
So, you cant buy without a phone call?
I dont have a phone :/
So is that it?
Or are they satisfied with phoning you up at work?
And thanks for the OP, cleared up a lot for me.

I am not sure about using a work phone. I think they need a home phone, and not a cell even. But I'm not sure how they can tell where exactly are you calling from, so it might be worth a try calling them from work.

If you order codes from battleclinic or buy them on ebay no phone confirmation may be required. And of course EVE store ships the codes to your home address, and I do not believe they require a phone confirmation to do this.

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2007.11.18 07:09:00 - [20]

prices have been updated

Linden Dixon
Posted - 2007.11.26 15:09:00 - [21]

It is annoying... I work in another country from where I got my credit card, and most of them won't sell me time-code because I have to "go home" before I'm legit.

I got mine from ebay in the end. They did call after about 5 mins to check, which is fair enough. The caller was a Russian sounding girl... so imagine what you like.

No other calls back to me, or any spam whatsoever since.

Archron Dusyfe Industries
Posted - 2007.12.04 16:53:00 - [22]

Right the reason they ring you is simple, to prove that you are the card holder, and not someone else having used a card they could have STOLE from someone. Anyone can type in the details from a card into a website and these companies dont want the hassle of having to reimburse people that havent bought something frmo them because they're card was stolen.

I have used shattered crystal, they ring you once and never again if you repeat the order. They ask you basic questions such as wheres the nearest hospital/highway to confirm the location of the card.

Its simply a fraud prevention measure so lets not get upset about it :)

shattered crystal will also ring mobile phones, and thats who i use so you wont need to be home to use it.

PS, shattered crystal wont accept answers that you've been told by someone else while you're on the phone :)

Ambassador Ross
Posted - 2007.12.15 20:14:00 - [23]

how does battleclinic send you the codes?

Evil Darkness
Posted - 2007.12.15 21:49:00 - [24]

they send the codes through email

Evil Darkness
Posted - 2007.12.16 10:19:00 - [25]

ConfusedCoolLaughingMadRazzEvil or Very MadTwisted EvilTwisted EvilSTICKY

Very HappySmileSurprisedShocked

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2008.01.01 10:25:00 - [26]

new year bump Cool

Jakben Imble
Posted - 2008.01.01 14:15:00 - [27]

I used shattered crystal, they phoned me on my mobile phone (I'm in the UK btw) the guy on the end of the phone was very polite and the conversation didn't last more than 2 mins, 1 minute later I had my code in my inbox.

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2008.01.21 10:27:00 - [28]

priced have been updated, looks like they dropped 10-20 mil over the past month

Leora Nomen
Posted - 2008.02.01 01:41:00 - [29]


Leora Nomen
Posted - 2008.03.27 04:04:00 - [30]


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