shards have been down today to fix an astral diamond/auction house exploit. been stringing everyone along with "update coming soon" for a few hours now, but it seems like something about a plan will be released within an hour or so.
I'm not sure they will be up any time soon. I followed the twitter feed off and on the past 2 hours and he keeps saying "soon..." The guy tweeting for NW at the moment seems to be out of the coding loop and what exactly is being done. He seems more of a customer service rep than a developer. But anyways, I did a little research to see what could possibly be the problem and found this on the NW forums.
Their out of game service (the gateway), which is a website which you can use to trade in-game items & check up on your character, had a huge oversight in the code. People who put in a negative bid on an item (via that gateway) got that much AD put on their character instantly, and could do so as many times as they liked. So people were literally creating money out of thin air.
Furthermore, people who put negative bids on items people were actually trying to auction, could actually win the item AND get free money, while the person who posted the item gets a full 1 AD for their troubles. They are patching up the exploit as we speak.
However, this has already affected the entirety of all 3 servers. The market is completely torpedoed atm. Everything of value was bought up instantly or stolen, There IS no zen on the market anymore because players have bought it all up. It's also impossible to tell how long this exploit has been going on. The gateway's been operational since the start of Open Beta. Most of this conjured AD has already permiated the market, been given away to innocent people / traded, etc.
I'm glad I just started playing and haven't invested too much time in it yet. Sounds like a bunch of people got ripped off and the market is completely trashed. Depending on how far it actually went, this seems like a difficult situation to fix. A complete wipe would piss off half the people. Not doing a complete wipe will piss off the other half.
EDIT: Here is an official post from NW:
Dearest Beta Testers and Bravest Adventures,
In the dark hours of this Sunday morning an in-game bug was discovered and taken advantage of by a very small group of villainous Nashers intent on exploiting Neverwinters Open Beta Gateway and Auction House systems for unearned Astral Diamonds.
Thanks in no small part to the efforts of our continually amazing Beta community, we were able to quickly identify the exploit and the perpetrators. Once identified, we took immediate action, calling in the entire development and publishing teams to lock down the Neverwinter OBT as we sought out a solution.
Rest assured, the issue has been corrected and we have taken appropriate action against all players who took advantage of the bug, including but not limited to enforcing permanent bans.
Sadly, the damage to the economy was done.
Rather than let the malicious efforts of a few unsavory players linger and continually impact the games economy and balance as we progress through these later stages of Open Beta, we have made the extremely difficult decision to rollback Neverwinter to a time shortly before the abuse and exploitation began.
This means that roughly seven hours of progress made between 5:20 AM and 12:20 PM Pacific Time will be lost to all players. For that, we do sincerely apologize.
Following an extensive QA check, Neverwinter will begin again as soon as possible. We hope to have them available soon, and will continue to post updates on the forums and other channels.
When the servers do come back up, a few systems will not be active: the Auction House and the Astral Diamond exchange. When the servers are back up and running, well still be examining these features and preparing some resolutions.
Any attempt to use the Astral Diamond exchange will give an error message. The Auction House, however, wont give an error -- it simply will fail to post the item. This is the known behavior, and were working to bring these systems back up as soon as possible.
As a token of our appreciation for you, the community, and all that youve done for the game throughout these days of Beta, we will be sending a thank-you gift to players and opening ourselves up on the forums and various other channels to answer any and all questions we can.
For more exact details on the rollback and other efforts related to it, please see our comprehensive forum FAQ.
With sincerest thanks for the continued support and feedback,
Your Neverwinter Team
This thread has the FAQ on the roll back: LINK
This post was edited on 5/20 at 2:02 am