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Land ownership in Entropia is a prickly subject, because a legal system does not exist to mediate disputes and MindArk retains control of everything, no matter how much money a player invests in the game. What's more, land values can fluctuate more greatly than in the real world. In Entropia, unlike in the real world, land can literally be created by the developers. As more land is created, of course, demand and value can decrease.
Whether disputes over virtual real estate can be settled in real-world courts is still a legal unknown. Only one such case has been filed. In February 2002, BlackSnow Interactive filed a lawsuit against Mythic Entertainment after the developer announced that it would shut down the game Dark Age of Camelot, making virtual items related to the game worthless. BlackSnow ultimately dropped the case.
That lawsuit exemplifies the risk of investing in virtual real estate and items, says Richard A. Bartle, a London-based game developer who studies virtual economies.
If you buy things in a game like Second Life or Entropia (now know as First Planet Calipso, FPC) and the company announces that they're going to close the game down, you're in trouble, because you can't get your money back.