The vast majority of market manipulations are conducted with profit as the only motivation. For the past two months, Darkrftr has been waging an economic war on the Intrepid Crossing alliance as an act of revenge; “There is no way we could fight them so I am attacking their market”.
Darkrftr has made claims that Intrepid Crossing “stole” 1.4 billion isk (in the form of an investment) to build their outpost in WU9-ZR, Etherium Reach. Shortly after the outpost was built, Darkrftr claims that his corporation was unceremoniously removed from the alliance, and no refund of the investment ever tendered.
Star Nove, a member of Intrepid Crossing tells a different tale. According to Nove, Darkrftr had been conducting his manipulations long before his corporation was removed from the alliance. Although complaints were sent in to Darkrftr’s superiors, Nove claims: “His corporation chose not to do anything about it and I believe that's why they were kicked [from the alliance]”. In addition, Nove claims that Darkrftr “also infiltrated one of our corps, then when he was given hangar access, he stole from them.”
Regardless of the cause of the dispute, Darkrftr has escalated his manipulations since the separation. Using a jump clone still housed in D-IZT9, Darkrftr has been buying up high demand items, marking them up, and reselling them.
Originally willing to settle for a 1.4 billion isk payout to “go away”, Darkrftr has steadily increased his demands as Intrepid Crossing continues to ignore them. He is currently demanding 120 billion isk to leave the area. Darkrftr admits that this number is unrealistic, but he does say that “I would take less if I could sell off my stock before I left. That’s a leave now price.”
Intrepid Crossing is not the only alliance in the area that has noticed the market manipulations. Dylon Xavier of Evolution Alliance and Clerence Thomas of Ethereal Dawn weighed in with their views of the situation.
Clerence Thomas chuckled: “Mostly I sell a lot more shuttles in bulk!...as far as I know, Intrepid Crossing mostly sells on contract, so it's got negligible impact on them. Most of Ethereal Dawn produces what it can internal to corps and imports the rest. Most of what we have on the market is cast off and convenience stuff... So while it does annoy a few, it's mostly a chuckle for us producers that sell a silly number of shuttles. Only our newest corps coming out here really noticed it in looking over the market.”
Dylon Xavier: “Evolution imports 90% of what we use, so no major impact thus far. I’m not sure his 'impact' on the market is even really noticeable. The things we'd actually buy, like ships, we'd bring in on jumps. The rest is just 'convenience' – ‘don't wanna fly back for missiles’ kind of thing.”
Most in the area agree that the only affect Darkrftr has had is on the convenience of using the market system. While several scoff at his actions as “useless and limited”, Darkrftr has made an estimated 10-12 billion isk on his manipulations to date.
Although he still claims that revenge is his goal, it appears that Darkrftr’s manipulations are not having the intended impact; but with profits still coming in, there is no pressing need for Darkrftr to abandon his endeavor.