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Belgium, Hawaii to ban, regulate in-game loot boxes as gambling

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I never thought I would see anyone in a gaming forum defending micro transactions and pay to win. I guess some people deserve to be cheated.

Who is defending it?

 

Aren't you and Volo? I mean i'm of the opinion of who cares if its gambling as long as it stops micro transactions. And before anyone starts getting on a high horse about how i'm wrong; net neutrality finished after many years and many previous fights. If they can use the law to their side consumers should be able to stop anti consumer practices using the law. Just because free to play have a 2% of people that pay a lot for games (whales) doesn't mean that the rest should be force to buy this **** to complete the game and definitively not on a game that's already been paid for.

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I'd say the answer to that question is kind of like the answer to "who's the sucker in this poker game?"*

 

*If you can't tell, it's you. ;)

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I don't think the target demographic thing even matters in the grand scheme of things. It's a big talking point, yes, and is an easy political target, but why should that be the determining factor?

Target demographics is pretty important. If gambling by minors is illegal, and if you determine that lootboxes are gambling then it's a big deal if they're also being aimed at minors as that is a more deliberate breaking of the law than an incidental one- you haven't just made the mistake of saying that lootboxes aren't gambling, you've compounded it by having them in a game marketed to children. Trouble for EA is that Star Wars is clearly a kiddie orientated franchise, so as soon as (if) lootboxes are determined to be gambling it instantly looks like they're also marketing gambling to kids rather than the comparatively minor problem of having unregulated gambling aimed at adults.

 

The overall reason for it being a big deal is the same for gambling in general, or for smoking or alcohol. Adults are expected to be able to be responsible for their actions, children aren't- and you're not expected to try and get children to gamble/ smoke/ drink by targeting them either.

 

Perhaps the best example would be something like a casino- everyone knows that a certain percentage of under age people will get into a casino using fake IDs or via carelessness. It's a big deal especially if due to negligence, but it's also expected. On the other hand if you have a casino with daily after school specials advertised around the local high schools you might suspect that they're not entirely aiming themselves at the adult market.

Edited by Zoraptor
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I never thought I would see anyone in a gaming forum defending micro transactions and pay to win. I guess some people deserve to be cheated.

Who is defending it?

 

Aren't you and Volo? I mean i'm of the opinion of who cares if its gambling as long as it stops micro transactions. And before anyone starts getting on a high horse about how i'm wrong; net neutrality finished after many years and many previous fights. If they can use the law to their side consumers should be able to stop anti consumer practices using the law. Just because free to play have a 2% of people that pay a lot for games (whales) doesn't mean that the rest should be force to buy this **** to complete the game and definitively not on a game that's already been paid for.

 

 

I don't want to government bludgeoning the gaming industry with their heavy handed policies. Do you want the gaming industry to be driven by consumers or the government? It annoys me that consumers have made microtransactions a reality, but it seems like a pretty obvious slippery slope to let the government control content. It's not gambling, or at least it isn't any more than trading card games and a ton of other products out on the market. 

 

This entire thing seems like something Jack Thompson would wholeheartedly support.

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Maybe it matters in terms of abstract concepts like moral culpability, but I'd be more supportive of less subjective measures when it comes to drafting the actual legislation. Then we don't get the absolute mess that would ensue when EA's lawyers hold up the courts with arguments on how they're not technically targeting children, because the law would simply be that if your game contains lootboxes then it's subject to such-and-such regulation, period.

 

It would be a right mess trying to enforce varying standards of what level of gambling is okay for games potentially as diverse as Lego, Star Wars, Battlefield, or Sexdungeon XXX Online. Like the cigarette advertising ban, this is something that would work better as a blanket rule.

Edited by Humanoid

L I E S T R O N G
L I V E W R O N G

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I never thought I would see anyone in a gaming forum defending micro transactions and pay to win. I guess some people deserve to be cheated.

Who is defending it?

 

Aren't you and Volo? I mean i'm of the opinion of who cares if its gambling as long as it stops micro transactions. And before anyone starts getting on a high horse about how i'm wrong; net neutrality finished after many years and many previous fights. If they can use the law to their side consumers should be able to stop anti consumer practices using the law. Just because free to play have a 2% of people that pay a lot for games (whales) doesn't mean that the rest should be force to buy this **** to complete the game and definitively not on a game that's already been paid for.

 

 

I don't want to government bludgeoning the gaming industry with their heavy handed policies. Do you want the gaming industry to be driven by consumers or the government? It annoys me that consumers have made microtransactions a reality, but it seems like a pretty obvious slippery slope to let the government control content. It's not gambling, or at least it isn't any more than trading card games and a ton of other products out on the market. 

 

This entire thing seems like something Jack Thompson would wholeheartedly support.

 

Consumers haven't supported this as it only has been extensively implemented on FTP games, whereas DLC and Season Passes have led to this is another argument. As whether I want the government or not...I didn't want them screwing up net neutrality yet they did it. It seems that is erroneous to assume that one law will lead to more or that no laws somehow prevents them from legislating. Specially when there is money involved and special interests in following that law.

 

I might even argue that a sudden draconian move might be the best thing since it would force the hand of the generally indolent public.

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I'd say the answer to that question is kind of like the answer to "who's the sucker in this poker game?"*

 

*If you can't tell, it's you. ;)

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It would definetly be preferable if we had politicians who knew and understood what they were talking about as far as 'free to play' (which is a misnomer btw, when micro transactions and pay to win come into play), namely, our generation the millennialis, but they're just starting to get into politics, it'll be decades before there are a majority of millennial generation in Congress.

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"Aren't you and Volo?"

 

Are you on crack?


DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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"Aren't you and Volo?"

 

Are you on crack?

I wish

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I'd say the answer to that question is kind of like the answer to "who's the sucker in this poker game?"*

 

*If you can't tell, it's you. ;)

village_idiot.gif

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"Aren't you and Volo?"

 

Are you on crack?

 

Your defenses of lootboxes and microtransactions are the most fervent and least logical in this thread. So... Orogun01 isn't wrong to point out that you're defending them, on account of you defending them.

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I would not object.


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I'd rather do away with the ones that are pay to win or are shiny objects to impatience. About the only in-app purchases that I'm okay with are ones to remove ads, those that allow you to try a limited portion of it and buy full later (BigFish games uses the same business model for their mobile versions of games as they do their PC and MAC games), and possibly episodic things.

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It might even have a "two birds, one stone" effect? It would shelter our youth from the perils of gambling and would probably highly curtail companies from using microtransactions because an "A" rating is usually the kiss of death sales wise, right? There would still be games that offered microtransactions for those 1% whales that use them but the majority would go away?


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What if games with microtransactions were given an M or A rating (or whatever "adulthood" is in your country)?

 

Variant 1: Nothing will change, just some games will be 18+ like Wolfenstein which itself bears positive message. Teens will play Total War, Witcher and Super Meat Boy.

 

Variant 2: Games will change, with lootboxes being only in game reward, and shop ofering sets of fixed items, or platinium for crafting items.

 

Both variants are fine.

 

It is interesting why exacly EA is pushing MTX so hard. Do they pursuit very high profit, or they have production cost so high, or not enought people buy games?

Edited by evilcat

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EA adopted free to play market strategy, which is designed to milk vulnerable individuals. I don’t think anyone will claim that lootboxes or pay2win micro transactions offer fair deals. We have seen reports of minors spending thousands of $ on free2play games with their parents cards. And while I might first criticise parents for giving such unrestricted access to their bank accounts, it doesn’t make dev intentions any less predatory.

 

Battlefront is a game based on a franchise owned by Disney (company for kids), which is a space fairytale (aimed primarily at children) and no doubt many kids will want battlefront for Christmas. It is by no means a stretch that the plan was to get parents to buy game for kids and then milk as much as they can out of them. As it happens, StarWars has been for a while, and unlike something like Smurf Village has tons of reviewers and adults interested in it and raised their concerns rather loudly.

 

I am not sure if anything will come out of it, and I especially doubt EA will suffer due to that. But hopefully it will give big publishers a pause and they will backpedal a bit. If it turns out micro transactions like lootboxes can indeed be harmful and addictive to young people and have a negative impact on them that there should be a legislation to prevent that from happening.

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It is interesting why exacly EA is pushing MTX so hard. Do they pursuit very high profit, or they have production cost so high, or not enought people buy games?

http://investor.ea.com/secfiling.cfm?filingID=712515-17-95&CIK=712515

 

Quote regarding removal of micro transactions in BF2:

 

“This change is not expected to have a material impact on EA’s fiscal year 2018 financial guidance.”

 

They don’t need those to keep making games. Overwatch doesn’t NEED lootboxes in order to not shut down. But corporations do what corporations do. Their job is to make as much money with as little expense as they can. Make shareholders happy. It seems as overwatch proved, lootboxes can bring a lot of money with very little expense. That’s all that matter. EA just got a bit to greedy this time around it seems.

 

StarWars game won’t sell enough to make money and then some? Please.


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What about the smaller ones which publish pay2win apps and stuff? It's one thing to go after big companies like EA, but the apple App Store is a different ecosystem and in app purchases are rampant.

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What about the smaller ones which publish pay2win apps and stuff? It's one thing to go after big companies like EA, but the apple App Store is a different ecosystem and in app purchases are rampant.

I imagine legislations would have its good&bad impact on all. However, from the statements they made it seems they go mostly after payments with random element to them.


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Pay2Win isn't gambling though, is it? If you're buying a loot crate with a chance to unlock Darth Vader then that's gambling as it has that random chance element, if you're outright buying an unlock you're just making a purchase as there's no randomness.

 

Classic gambling requires both a random chance game and a 'stake' or cost to be gambling. So random unlocks based on time played- the classic BF2 example being the 40 hour play time to unlock Darth Vader- wouldn't be gambling either, as there's no stake/ monetary cost, just a voluntary time cost.

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"Your defenses of lootboxes and microtransactions are the most fervent and least logical in this thread. So... Orogun01 isn't wrong to point out that you're defending them, on account of you defending them."

 

Except I';m not defending them. I'm attacking gov't interverence on people's choice. If you (or I) don't like lootboxes (or gambling) we have the damn choice not do it.   I don't need or want the gov't babysitting me in this regard.

\

Why do you believe in power, slavery, and Nazism?

 

Why are you anti freedom?

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DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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"Your defenses of lootboxes and microtransactions are the most fervent and least logical in this thread. So... Orogun01 isn't wrong to point out that you're defending them, on account of you defending them."

 

Except I';m not defending them. I'm attacking gov't interverence on people's choice. If you (or I) don't like lootboxes (or gambling) we have the damn choice not do it.   I don't need or want the gov't babysitting me in this regard.

\

Why do you believe in power, slavery, and Nazism?

 

Why are you anti freedom?

So government regulating publisher interference in your product means that you're less free?


I'd say the answer to that question is kind of like the answer to "who's the sucker in this poker game?"*

 

*If you can't tell, it's you. ;)

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Wut?

 

Publisher offers me smething. I have the option to say yes or no.

 

Oh, you talking on behalf of developers? Publishers pay dvelopers to do a job. Don't like the job you are paid to do work for another publisher.

 

Same as customer. Don't like the offer don't buy it.

 

CHOICE.


DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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Wut?

 

Publisher offers me smething. I have the option to say yes or no.

 

Oh, you talking on behalf of developers? Publishers pay dvelopers to do a job. Don't like the job you are paid to do work for another publisher.

 

Same as customer. Don't like the offer don't buy it.

 

CHOICE.

So you have no issue with predatory practices that hurt consumers who are misinformed. Must be nice living in a world where choice is as simple as black and white, cause over here is all shades of grey. Seriously, your life must be charmed if you can just get the job you want if you don't like the one you have, and without having to worry about finances or the logistics of it.

 

Come on Volo, you used to be better at playing an ass. I know this topic ain't prime material but you need to step up your game old boy.

  • Like 3

I'd say the answer to that question is kind of like the answer to "who's the sucker in this poker game?"*

 

*If you can't tell, it's you. ;)

village_idiot.gif

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