Governments do not like loot boxes!

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GTS
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Re: Governments do not like loot boxes!

Postby GTS » February 16th, 2018, 5:30 pm

It's all about the dopamine, and it's addictive affects. Of course, many of these governments have no problem having lottery games, which works on the same principle. But then again, lotteries are easy to age-restrict.

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Atarifever
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Re: Governments do not like loot boxes!

Postby Atarifever » February 16th, 2018, 5:45 pm

ESauce wrote:Companies intentionally develop their games to be addictive and at some point someone needs to step in and say that’s wrong.


I already do this, both in my purchase choices and the choices I make for my kids (i.e. help them avoid garbage games, never set a credit card up to a game or online store, etc). Why does the Government also need to do it for me? Am I unable to control my own behaviour? Am I somehow in need of some white knight to rescue me and my family from the unbearable burden of not wasting our money on garbage?

pacman000
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Re: Governments do not like loot boxes!

Postby pacman000 » February 17th, 2018, 8:35 am

Remember, till the 70's New York banned pinball!

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scotland
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Re: Governments do not like loot boxes!

Postby scotland » February 17th, 2018, 9:43 am

pacman000 wrote:Remember, till the 70's New York banned pinball!


Other way around - pinball was 'unbanned' around then in New York, when it was demonstrated to be a game of skill, not chance. It was banned decades before in the 1940s by LaGuardia before the introduction of pinball flippers, and indeed, those earlier forms of pinball (plinko, bagatelle) were basically games of chance that did take kids hard earned nickels. It does give evidence that the size of the stakes, even a lowly nickel, were enough to call it gambling.

I don't know where the line of gambling is. In toy departments, one of the current trends are essentially physical loot boxes - you get an opaque container containing a toy. You always get a toy, but what toy is the gamble. I currently have 2 Pac-Man, 2 Orange Ghosts, 1 Blue Ghost and 1 Yellow Ghost I want my Red Ghost, but I might have to buy a lot of mystery boxes to finally get one (its like a modern gumball vending machine issue).

Since every loot box gives you something, even if its not something you want, does that make it not gambling anymore?

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Atarifever
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Re: Governments do not like loot boxes!

Postby Atarifever » February 17th, 2018, 9:50 am

scotland wrote: (its like a modern gumball vending machine issue).

Since every loot box gives you something, even if its not something you want, does that make it not gambling anymore?

Fantastic comparison. I used to get so upset when I'd get a plastic ring instead of a "super bouncer." My parents always called those novelty machines "junk machines," to the point that that is still what me and my siblings call them to this day. My kids will also call them that by the time I'm done with it.

Bear claw machines and redemption machines at the arcade also fit this category. Should government ban redemption machines (like skeeball) and bear claw machines too?

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scotland
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Re: Governments do not like loot boxes!

Postby scotland » February 17th, 2018, 11:40 am

Atarifever wrote: Bear claw machines and redemption machines at the arcade also fit this category. Should government ban redemption machines (like skeeball) and bear claw machines too?


In the US, those carnival games and arcade redemption games may be regulated by state governments. In one state I am familiar with, those claw redemption games do have to be set for a certain payout, like 1:12 times the claw machine has enough grip strength to hold the prize.

A difference there is the usual outcome of claw machimes is losing, where the coin vending machine the usual outcome is winning something of lesser value. I think loot boxes always give you something, unlike a lottery ticket or claw machine.

One solution is just transparency - are the outcomes and odds fully known for loot boxes?

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Atarifever
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Re: Governments do not like loot boxes!

Postby Atarifever » February 17th, 2018, 12:35 pm

scotland wrote:In one state I am familiar with, those claw redemption games do have to be set for a certain payout, like 1:12 times

A difference there is the usual outcome of claw machimes is losing, where the coin vending machine the usual outcome is winning something of lesser value. I think loot boxes always give you something, unlike a lottery ticket or claw machine.

Wow. Having to list payouts certainly makes it clear they see the gambling component. Like you say, at least loot boxes always pay something. Now that something is usually a big pile of junk, but still.

JWK
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Re: Governments do not like loot boxes!

Postby JWK » February 22nd, 2018, 1:14 am

Atarifever wrote:Not to get into too political a discussion, but I am not a fan of loot boxes, but am less of a fan of government handling something that should be left to parents and markets. It was not the law that removed loot boxes from Star Wars Battlefront; it was the market. It is not really the law that keeps parents from setting their kids up on Poker Stars under the parents' credit cards, it is common sense. There is absolutely no need for government intervention here, and you have to ask once this door is open, how long before it is also fine to start policing other kinds of in game content?


I entered this thread to say exactly this. I hate loot boxes with a passion. But getting the government involved in our entertainment is not the right way to go. The backlash from gamers was enough for EA and others to get the message. The market would have swayed from gamers voting with their wallets, no government mandate necessary. As for gamer kids, we all know how involved you need to be as a parent. No law is going to parent your child better than you.

Atari explained this issue perfectly as far as I’m concerned.


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