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US lawmaker who called out Star Wars Battlefront 2 lays out plans for anti-loot box law

Chris Lee aims to prohibit the sale of games with 'gambling mechanisms' to anyone under the age of 21.

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http://www.pcgamer.com/us-lawmaker-who-called-out-star-wars-battlefront-2-lays-out-plans-for-anti-loot-box-law/ - this is the source so it should be linking there, your site should be the credit url
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UraClown9d ago

STAY out of my games with legislation. Please, its not gambling, just do NOT buy the "loot boxes", you can grind instead of wanting instant gratification. A little self control goes a long way instead of playing the victim,

ravinash9d ago (Edited 9d ago )

I don't mind loot boxes if they can remove the gambling aspect of it.
If there is part of a game I'm willing to pay for, let me buy it.... don't make me spend a pile of money with a high likelihood that I won't get what I want. It's just a con.

Alek839d ago

Exactly, let me know exactly what I am buying and my chances of getting it.

doomster719d ago (Edited 9d ago )

The thing is ravinash, it's the loot boxes themselves that are the gambling aspect. As I've posted once before, the definition of gambling is to play a game of chance(with money/in-game credits). At least that's Oxfords Dictionary's definition of it. These publishers can keep their microtransactions for all I care (I don't use them). What I don't like (especially as a parent) is the gambling aspect. I welcome any law's that will help protect my children from this.

Cobra9519d ago

Alek, I want them to tell me exactly what I'm buying, what I have 100% chance of getting.

1nsomniac9d ago

Anyone who is prepared to pay real money for fake game currency or items is a massive loser. I’m sorry but I don’t care who you are, it shows just how sad this generation of kids are. If your an adult & doing it then you should be embarrassed.

Sono4219d ago

This is the best news the gaming industry has gotten in a while. PLEASE let this go through.

bigmalky9d ago (Edited 9d ago )

Okay... Then I suggest you play WWE 2K18. You don't have to like it, but please, play it for the sake of trying a game where lootboxes are present without microtransactions.

In WWE 2K18, you have a career mode where you create a character. That character starts the game severely handicapped against most of your opponents. The only way to upgrade him, cosmetically, his moveset and stats is to play through the mode, earning virtual currency and opening lootboxes.

Those lootboxes cost between 2,500 and 10,000 VC. For each match you win/lose, depending on star ratings, you earn 25 to 600 VC. If you want 600 VC, you have to play a 20 minute match. Also, you have to do multiple special moves, like putting someone through a table or thingd called OMG moments, which are also locked until you pay stupid amounts of VC for. So you're stuck earning 25-250 VC until you can afford them. It takes so long to unlock anything you want to customise with, that you'll give up playing early on.

So no, I paid for a game and want to enjoy it, not grind it out for months until I can randomly get what I need. Paid is worse, but making people grind in place of enjoyment is pretty lame.

Oh, and I forgot to mention... Everything you unlock in the lootboxes, you also have to pay extra VC on top of the box, to use each item you just paid for in virtual currency.

badz1498d ago (Edited 8d ago )

publishers could have made their games featuring real market that sells items that people can choose and they will know exactly what they are buying but NO...THAT is not gonna generate too much revenues because people can choose what they like and what they don't like. so publishers were like...

"how do we sell them these crappy avatars/cosmetics/helmets/gun color/accessories that we let our junior staff made with MS Paint?"

"AHA...lootboxes! we just tell them what's in them but they can't choose what exactly they will get and hopefully they will keep buying until they get what they want. but...not before we have sold to them all those things they don't really want!" MUAHAHAHA...

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 8d ago
ocelot079d ago

Yer you hear that gambling addicts? Their gambling addiction cured thanks to this clown. Hang on let me try. Hay drug addicts, stop taking drugs. There I think I just cured drug addiction. This is pretty easy I don't know what no one else thought of trying this before.

/s

gangsta_red9d ago (Edited 9d ago )

It's a miracle!!

UraClown9d ago

Once again, its not gambling. They are trying to paint this as gambling...whats to stop from further involving themselves in your console/PC...maybe an extra tax on every game sold to give to these poor poor people to treat them? I think a $10 tax on every game sold would suffice wouldn't you? When it comes out of your pocket, let see how fast everyone says it not gambling...

Grap9d ago

OMG you cured my addiction to porn.

UltraNova8d ago

Grap,

Addiction??? How dare you, heathen! Porn is a blessing bestowed to us, unworthy mortals by the GODs of Pleasure!(thank the heavens they where spared by Kratos' Devine dismemberment tour) How dare you defile thy name ???

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 8d ago
9d ago Replies(4)
Nybz9d ago (Edited 9d ago )

Loot boxes are a problem, plain and simple.

It’s a cheap way for a dev to give someone a false sense of “progression” throughout the game and in a sort of fucked up kind of way it’s like they’re starting to treat gamers as dogs getting a little treat after each trick the owner commands them to perform, it’s really pathetic.

It also intices studios to become lazy with their product and it also sparks gambling addiction problems within specific humans which is another huge problem.

These companies know what they’re doing and they need to be fucking stopped.

Storm Shadow NF9d ago

Agree 210% snowflake generation, still can’t believe politicians are actually worried about this petty BS. People are crazy !!!

Artemidorus9d ago

1000s of hours per game as an alternative? Do you have any real responsibilities or are you still at home and unemployed?

By the way loot creates are gambling considering it's a request for money and it's a gamble on what you receive.

showtimefolks9d ago (Edited 9d ago )

uraclown

do you work for some of these publishers? why are you defending them at all? yeah i am sure a T for teen game the kid who is 12 is suppose to have self control

forget that you said grind harder well EA went out of it's way to make sure just to unlock a character we have to grind than to unlock other stats about the same character we were required to do more grinding

people need to understand this just look at destiny bungie slowed the XP bonuses to make sure the grind took longer. developers will make sure they have systems running in the background that will limit how much a player
can earn

there was a article that said most time it's not the publisher but developers who will go to the publisher and give them ideas on to how the game can generate more money. more money for publishers mean more money for developers via pays and bonuses. so bungie and dice are as much to blame as their publishers

i hope the government comes down hard on them make a great game and it will sell. put cosmetic items in loot boxes only there should never be a pay to win or pay to advance further

UraClown9d ago

No I do not work for them nor do I care for some of their practices. I just don't buy them. Maybe start by having parents monitoring said teens behavior online. That's where it all begins.

showtimefolks9d ago

with that attitude you must be a EA employee

datriax9d ago ShowReplies(2)
Xx_Pistol_xX9d ago (Edited 9d ago )

@UraClwon agree with you 100 percent. The last thing we need is government pushing their heads into gaming. Especially because as a community if loots are unfair we will not support it like Bafftlefront.

-Foxtrot9d ago

Would you rather these people attack games for no reason? Seriously, the amount of times people within the Government use games as a scape goat or because they need a boost in the polls, like they are "doing something for the community".

Now we have someone doing something we can mostly agree on. If they did step out of line in the future and try to add in laws and the like for silly shit which is being done for the sake of it fair enough we'll speak out against it but for once someone in the Government are actually doing something which will benefit us

Credit where it's due.

choujij9d ago

I wholeheartedly agree. This needs to happen.

Xx_Pistol_xX8d ago

And you think the government will listen. How many people voted against getting rid of Net neutrality again. So much for listening. All we have to do is vote with our wallet. We don't need government putting their hand in video games.

TheRandomOne9d ago

Nope someone has gotta keep these a holes in check

Wagz229d ago

Play games of chance for money...or in this case, prizes...but it's not gambling...

Cobra9519d ago

He's doing the very opposite of intruding into your games. He's trying to keep corporate greed out of them.

yomfweeee9d ago

It isn't gambling by law, but it pretty much is the same the thing which is why he is trying to change the law. Get it?

UraClown9d ago

put it this way, you've seen those little vending machines that give you gumballs/superballs, you put the money in, but you want the blue one and get a green one, you got a green superball that you paid for with 25 cents for are you inclined to keep putting money in to get the blue one?? Maybe.., but is that considered gambling?...No of course not. Its the same principal in theory.

yomfweeee9d ago

They are similar but there are very major differences.

1) Those gumballs are all worth the same. That isn't same for some of these loot boxes. If there's a 5% chance for a high powered item and 95% chance for junk, people get hooked on stuff like that. Yes in the real world these things aren't worth anything. But it is worth something in the game.
2) You can't easily pump hundreds of dollars into a coin gumball machine.

Seraphim9d ago

UraClown

I think you fail to realize the bigger picture. Gambling is heavily regulated. Part of this bill is to ensure odds aren't tampered with. Which if true, makes this a much bigger problem than it already is. And hopefully another part will be disclosing odds so players know exactly how likely they are to not receive the item they're looking to purchase. Many gambling devices such as Video Poker machines disclose odds. Table games odds are are easily accessible though not disclosed on site. Same applies to lottery tickets. Odds are disclosed on the back.

Also your gumball analogy is off. The color is irrelevant. You are paying for and receiving a gumball. You know exactly what you're getting. Though by definition one could argue that machines with random items are gambling. It's just that people aren't spending hundreds or thousands of dollars on them & view them as trivial. A place to drop spare change.

Gambling, by definition is essentially putting up money or anything of value for a chance result. Lootboxes, no matter how you view them are in fact chance results and are in fact, by definition gambling. Perhaps part of the problem is that over the years we've grown more accustomed to, allowed and relaxed definitions and our own interpretation of what is and is not in regards to many subject matters.

Having said that. Would retailers even comply with this law? Would they send a memo and/or train all their clerks and employees on how to handle video game sales under this new law? Probably not.

I think, perhaps the most important things are that these can and do lead to gambling addiction and secondly that odds should be made clear so consumers can choose whether or not to spend money. It's easy to spend a few bucks knowing you probably won't get that item you want. But when you see the actual odds it's easy to not even try.

rainslacker9d ago

@seraphim

If loot boxes are classified as gambling, then one has to be 21 in order to purchase, and technically even use the game.

This would require laws to handle such things. This of course, could be specific to Hawaii, but for the game to sell in Hawaii, it'd have to have the proper notifications, which would be relevant to the rest of the country. The ESRB would itself have to create a new classification, because the current AO rating is for 18+. AO is a death knell for any game as major retailers won't carry it. So, at least in Hawaii, that classification would require, by law, that the game be only sold to those over 21. There would be heavy fines to any retailer or employee of said retailer who sells it to someone under 21. On top of that, if someone under 21 plays it, the person that gives them access to it could be held legally culpable for whatever laws pertain to that.

So, yeah, retailers would comply....at least in the states that enact laws like this. Because of the new classification, and the fact it can't sell, it would be left out across the board. I don't know how many sales of games are from the state of Hawaii, but one state can change everything, and others can adopt similar policies if they feel the same.

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Tru_Blu9d ago

Your spending REAL money on a game of chance (the loot box) Like it or not it's gambling and should be labeled clearly on the package.

gangsta_red9d ago

I'm reading a lot of good points on both sides of this discussion.

IMO, yes it's good that someone in the government is stepping in to address this and at the same time I do think it's also bad that they have to step in because who knows where they might take this when or if they get a victory. They may see this as a stepping stone to boost their own political career and keep it going just to stay in the spotlight.

At the same time they may be a good thing and curb other developers from going too far with this loot box tactic as EA did with Star Wars.

All in all most developers will think twice before such obvious scum tactics...and get more clever implementing them from now on.

C-H-E-F9d ago

it's not gambling? How sway?

Retard9d ago

^ doesn’t know what addiction and behavioral mechanisms are.

agent45329d ago

If I am a 15 year old kid that got his/her first part time job and gets addicted to lootboxes then what. Children are incapable of self control

deadwiseman859d ago

Can you please explain why it's not gambling?

Felsager9d ago (Edited 9d ago )

UraClown:

"STAY out of my games with legislation. Please, its not gambling, just do NOT buy the "loot boxes", you can grind instead of wanting instant gratification. A little self control goes a long way instead of playing the victim."

A typical lowlife dumbass retarded troll.

"You can grind instead...." I'm not going to grind 4500 hours for essential characters in a Battlefront 2 game.

Two words for ya: FUCK YOU.
Simple.

HeroPsychoDreamer9d ago

Why would you need self control if it's not gambling? And btw, try telling that to the kids playing these games. But hey, it's great that you stand up for these greedy multi billion dollar companies.

Goldenarmz8d ago

But it is gambling, anything based on chance is gambling and its illegal for anyone under 21 to do. EA is walking a very thin line with Loot Boxes if you have to pay to win.

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AnubisG9d ago

If the industry can't regulate itself and goes overboard than that is when the government will step in. EA went so far over the line that thanks to them the government had to be involved. In this case you can only blame EA because their greed knows no bounds and this is the result.

It's the same thing if you are a kid and play with other kids. If you play nice no one will say anything, but if you become an a*hole and bully others, eventually parents will get involved and set rules for you. You can't blame the parents, you should have behaved.

In this case, I welcome the government to remove loot boxes from my games.

UCForce9d ago

Like seriously, game companies should have self control. Now look at it, major game publishers like EA have gone too far.

UCForce9d ago ShowReplies(1)
FITSniper9d ago

Yeah ok. Totally legit function of government. Regulating what is and is not in a video game. No slippery slope there either. Sure.

Goldby9d ago

it may not be what is and isn't in games, but requirements for a game to be x dollars at retail.

Say they step in and make it that all games with lootboxes must be A)18+ and b) free to play. That is regulation that will make the developers and publishers think twice about including lootboxes in their game.

do they take the gamble and release their game for free with the only monotization coming from MT or sell it for 60$ and not include MT, which one will make them more money in the end?

Tru_Blu9d ago

Well if they want the game to have less then an M rating they need to keep gambling out of it!!

arkard9d ago

Agreed, I welcome the regulation. Gaming was taking a fast spiral downward with pay 2 win in a full price game. This is what happens when you push a consumer base to the point of breaking. I'm not worried about government overstepping its bounds. Nothing else is going to be regulated, the focus is only on lootboxes.

ElementX9d ago (Edited 9d ago )

Not worried about the government overstepping its bounds? Just look what Trump has done! Oil drilling in the arctic, gutting national parks in Utah, and all of the Republican people trying to regulate abortion, loosening environmental protections, etc. Yeah the government never oversteps boundaries.... Next thing violent games will face legislation like Australia and have to be toned down. The government doesn't belong in any entertainment industry.

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Activemessiah9d ago (Edited 9d ago )

This is where greed got us... the attention we didn't want from the very same people who hate gaming.... Thanks EA.

9d ago
bluefox7559d ago

I hate loot boxes as much as the next guy, but this is the wrong way to go about it. The last thing we need is the government getting involved in video games. They tried that in the 90's, and it wasn't good for anyone. Furthermore, we proved with the EA debacle that we don't even need the government, we can combat the problem with our voices.

datriax9d ago

Pretty sure motive for getting involved plays a part in any worry you should have.

Let's see, in the 90s, they wanted to keep video games warm and cuddly and censor the crap out of them.

Today, they want to stop companies from taking advantage of weak willed, and weak minded individuals and exploit them for every penny they can get.

See? Thinking isn't hard. Just sit back, close your eyes, and try it. You may pull out a worthwhile idea out of that void between your ears.

rainslacker9d ago

Actually, the government getting involved was what led to the ESRB, game ratings, and an industry wide standard that put the responsibility of what games were appropriate for different ages firmly with the industry, and the people who sold products for the industry. It wasn't perfect, but that's what government intervention brought.

There's nothing to say that the same thing won't happen here. It's only been two weeks, and the outcome is unknown. If the industry were smart, they'd get ahead of this, and prevent measures from happening. However, given the nature of loot boxes, and the concerns that comes with kids gambling, that will probably continue.

As far as what happens after that, lets wait until that happens to say it isn't appropriate for government to step in. The community itself has been complaining about crappy MT practices, and the industry hasn't listened. So in this case, I don't mind some authoritative entity standing up for us. Granted, they aren't actually addressing what we complain about, but the end result should result in what we're hoping for....at least in some small way. In no way will this cause MT to go away, nor will P2W go away. But at least it can curb one aspect of it, and if we're lucky(which is not likely to happen), publishers may actually start to see that people are tired of these kinds of practices and back off some, or just stick to the more acceptable forms of monetization that don't really ruffle as many feathers.