“Loot Boxes in MMO Good or Bad?” This question is still in debate, and many countries across the world are planning to bring a law to regulate Loot Boxes. Some countries already brought the bill in a parliament to consider Loot Boxes in Gambling Law.
The debate arose when the users complained that they spend a lot of money on this crate, assuming that they will get virtual items to make faster progress in a game. No doubt, the users got some items to progress in a game but not all the necessary things to beat the competitor.
Before moving ahead, you must know about Loot Box and its impact on the users. Loot Box is a virtual crate where players get various in-game items such as weapon skills, the skin of a character, new & advanced game weapons, and many more against real money. These items enable the players to progress faster in a game against their competitors.
The first time, the concept of Loot Boxes came in early 2000, intending to generate funds for the developers for free-to-play games. With time, the giant gaming companies applied this concept in many games, and the issue arose when EA launched Star Wars Battlefront II. In this game, players need to spend a lot of money to make progress in a game. For instance, if you are playing this game, you will have to pay $60 to purchase the Loot box to stay ahead of your competitor.
Loot Box Vs. Microtransactions
Moreover, there is another term quite popular in the gaming industry, i.e., microtransaction. It is used when the player buys a specific item or service of a game. Here, the player chooses the item they are buying and its usefulness. But, in Loot Box, they are unfamiliar with what they will get from the box as it is based on randomness.
Is Loot Box Bad?
Many users reported that they become addicted to Loot Box because of the probability of getting all the game items to win the season, but that does not happen. Most players termed it gambling because the basic principle matches with the casino, such as slot machines.
However, the perspective of the gaming industry is a bit different as they believe that the players are getting some worthy game items against the real money. But in gambling, the users will either win or lose; there is no middle possibility.
As per the statement of Stanley Pierce (CEO, ESA), players can play the game till the end without buying a Loot Box. Loot Box is an optional product that acts as a catalyst and boosts the gaming experience.
How is Loot Box Addicted?
There are many games where Loot Box is featured, and the winner who receives the awards in the form of Loot Box has to open it using real money. As per the stats, almost 40% of the players open a Loot Box.
Moreover, some developers design a game based on human psychology and encourage the players to open Loot Box. The basic principle used by the developer is fear; either they will feature on the game
that Loot Box is available for a limited time or will give special deals.
The adolescent players are in a rush to win the game no matter what the cons are, so they cash the Loot Box to get additional games items. Even the Royal Society in the research published that adolescents are becoming addicted to Loot Boxes as the mechanics is similar to casino slots on that can be found on SlotsXO.
Entertainment Software Association (ESA) Stand on Loot Boxes
ESA clearly stated that Loot Box is not mandatory for players; it is an optional feature and said it does not come in gambling. Loot Box elements help the players progress in a game, and if players don’t opt for this crate, the game will also continue. So, it is ultimately the gamer’s decision to go with the Loot Boxes or not.
Government stands on Loot Boxes
Many government agencies around the world started to regulate Loot Boxes, but it is not that simple. It is challenging to Regulate Loot Boxes because each country has its gambling law, and the gaming industry has a $30 billion business. If any regulating act goes beyond, then it will hit the economy.
Gambling Regulator European Forum released a statement on the impact of Loot Boxes, and it was signed by 15 European countries. Belgian Gaming Commission decided to keep Loot Boxes in gambling law to protect the users. After that, the giant companies EA and Blizzards stopped Loot Boxes in those countries.
In the USA, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) started investigating the impact of Loot Boxes. The high official emphasized that children and young gamers should get protection. But further investigation into this matter was stopped because FTC lacks funds. However, if the investigation starts again and FTC takes a stand on the bad impact of Loot Boxes, then the agency may bring a new rule to minimize its effects.
Netherland has already banned the games that feature Loot Boxes because Government thinks that Loot Boxes come in gambling law. That means kids and adolescents won’t be able to access Loot Boxes, and the person who fulfills the gambling law can only access Loot Boxes.
What should you do?
If you are addicted to Loot Boxes and need to get rid of this, you must consult the game officials and tell them to disable the purchase and use of Loot Boxes. It might be this process will take some time, but don’t lose patience. However, if you have already spent a huge amount of money on Loot Boxes, then you can simply uninstall the game and try to focus on other activities. You can also try to find a special software or antivirus that will block the access to certain games or apps while you need to work or study.
Loot Boxes are making the users addicted where they are spending real money against the game items. Hence, it can’t be termed as good, and even many Government officials around the world have kept in gambling law. So, better you can say Loot Boxes is terrible because it gives you hope that you will get what you are thinking this time, but that does not happen. This phenomenon increases significantly, and you will try every time to check your fate to get the desired game items, and the same thing happens with gambling.
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