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Lootboxes are gambling (Official Statement)

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  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,487
    Eldurian said:
    Torval said:
    I'm curious how this will impact multinational MMOs specifically ESO. Will ESO have to stop selling their loot crates in Belgium and possibly the EU? Zenimax is a US company. They have EU subsidiaries but they are not directly connected to ZoS except through their parent Zenimax Media.
    These regulations do not apply to ESO as items from their lootcrates cannot be resold for cash. It actually only applies to a very small percentage of loot boxes. Primarily Steam games like PUBG.
    You didn't even bother to read the OP link before deciding to wade in with both feet to promote your libertarian garbage did you?
    Slapshot1188Scorchiencraftseeker
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,487
    Torval said:
    I'm curious how this will impact multinational MMOs specifically ESO. Will ESO have to stop selling their loot crates in Belgium and possibly the EU? Zenimax is a US company. They have EU subsidiaries but they are not directly connected to ZoS except through their parent Zenimax Media.

    Does anyone think that will apply pressure to these studios to remove loot crates? I don't see ZoS slowing down at all. In fact, I'd say their cash shop engine has just upgraded from industrial steam to fuel cell tech.

    Will GDPR affect lootcrates? Successful loot crate systems, in my opinion, are built on customer metrics. Does the GDPR have data provisions for how customer data is used even with business partners? Demographics analytics provide a framework for targeted marketing. Will game companies continue to be allowed to harvest data under the provision of providing a better service when that interpretation results in cash shop items and loot crates.

    Could hampering the use of customer data for loot crate marketing pull the rug out from under that system?

    Unfortunately since we're only worried about the semantics of gambling and targeting minors I think it's unlikely those questions will come up under this provision.
    I wonder the same about ESO myself. Their actual EU physical presence (servers, etc.) is mostly in Germany. I'm sure they also have Belgian customers. 

    They have said nothing about this as is their habit.
    Torval
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • EldurianEldurian Member EpicPosts: 2,736
    Iselin said:
    Eldurian said:
    Torval said:
    I'm curious how this will impact multinational MMOs specifically ESO. Will ESO have to stop selling their loot crates in Belgium and possibly the EU? Zenimax is a US company. They have EU subsidiaries but they are not directly connected to ZoS except through their parent Zenimax Media.
    These regulations do not apply to ESO as items from their lootcrates cannot be resold for cash. It actually only applies to a very small percentage of loot boxes. Primarily Steam games like PUBG.
    You didn't even bother to read the OP link before deciding to wade in with both feet to promote your libertarian garbage did you?
    This is like the 3rd or 4th topic on the subject I don't read the linked article in every one. But the Netherlands one was quite specific:

    "Six of the ten loot boxes that were studied do not contravene the law. In these games, there is no question of in-game goods with a market value and they therefore do not satisfy the definition of a prize under Article 1 of the Betting and Gaming Act."

    https://www.extremetech.com/extreme/267994-the-netherlands-declares-some-loot-boxes-illegal-warns-developers-to-modify-them
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,487
    Eldurian said:
    Iselin said:
    Eldurian said:
    Torval said:
    I'm curious how this will impact multinational MMOs specifically ESO. Will ESO have to stop selling their loot crates in Belgium and possibly the EU? Zenimax is a US company. They have EU subsidiaries but they are not directly connected to ZoS except through their parent Zenimax Media.
    These regulations do not apply to ESO as items from their lootcrates cannot be resold for cash. It actually only applies to a very small percentage of loot boxes. Primarily Steam games like PUBG.
    You didn't even bother to read the OP link before deciding to wade in with both feet to promote your libertarian garbage did you?
    This is like the 3rd or 4th topic on the subject I don't read the linked article in every one. But the Netherlands one was quite specific:

    "Six of the ten loot boxes that were studied do not contravene the law. In these games, there is no question of in-game goods with a market value and they therefore do not satisfy the definition of a prize under Article 1 of the Betting and Gaming Act."

    https://www.extremetech.com/extreme/267994-the-netherlands-declares-some-loot-boxes-illegal-warns-developers-to-modify-them
    Yes but we're talking about what Belgium did here. The clue is in the first post.
    Slapshot1188craftseeker
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • TorvalTorval Member LegendaryPosts: 19,169
    edited May 2018
    Sorry, I guess I'm a little confused. Go figure.

    I thought in the case of Belgium that consideration wasn't necessary. That is the rewards in the loot crate don't need to have real-world value and that even in-game value isn't necessary, but perceived value is enough to satisfy the condition for their definition of gambling.

    If that were true then I could see games like LotRO and ESO coming under fire, or scrutiny at the very least. Yet, neither has said a peep and show no signs of slowing down that direction, like Iselin said.

    Now if I am totally confused and those don't apply or have already been vetted, then I supposed most MMOs will carry on with business as usual.
    take back the hobby: https://www.reddit.com/r/patientgamers/

    traveller, interloper, anomaly
    ༼ つ ◕◕ ༽つ

  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,487
    Torval said:
    Sorry, I guess I'm a little confused. Go figure.

    I thought in the case of Belgium that consideration wasn't necessary. That is the rewards in the loot crate don't need to have real-world value and that even in-game value isn't necessary, but perceived value is enough to satisfy the condition for their definition of gambling.

    If that were true then I could see games like LotRO and ESO coming under fire, or scrutiny at the very least. Yet, neither has said a peep and show no signs of slowing down that direction, like Iselin said.

    Now if I am totally confused and those don't apply or have already been vetted, then I supposed most MMOs will carry on with business as usual.
    No, you're right. The Dutch ruling made that distinction of resale value being a determining factor. The Belgian one did not. They focus more on whether the loot boxes are something you buy or just a free thing included in the game.
    Torval
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • UngoodUngood Member EpicPosts: 2,636
    I don't think anyone actually likes RNG Games when it comes to spending money on a game, even the people that buy them I think often wish there was another better method to achieve the same goal.

    However, with that said, I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could want government intervention into this. 

    Anyone with any clue, would know damn well that the next system will be worse if it is forced into existence due to legalities and legislation, as opposed to brought about by players voting with their wallets and making what they enjoy profitable.

    At this point, I am going to step back see what happens to the game industry in Belgium. It could simply crumble as others pointed out, as there are less people in that entire country then there are in some cities in United States. So it's not like they are needed market or coveted market, game companies could simply cease selling in that country.

    But if they are shrewd as some imagine and make them off to be, They use this as a chance to develop and test out some other more insidious and predatory monetization methods.
    craftseekerlaserit
  • IselinIselin Member LegendaryPosts: 12,487
    Ungood said:

    However, with that said, I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could want government intervention into this. 


    All gamers would obviously prefer the companies to police themselves and most likely, so would the governments. That is a basic fact of this whole loot crate thing that seems to escape a lot of you in your haste to preach about the evils of government over-regulation.

    But as history has shown to anyone who bothers to read it, it is extremely rare for industries to self regulate adequately to prevent governments from stepping in and forcing them to do it. It's in their nature to push and push the boundaries until they go too far and there are always some greedy morons that screw it up for everyone.

    What you're witnessing is this timeless phenomenon playing itself out right in front of your eyes in gaming. 






    craftseekerlaserit
    “Microtransactions? In a single player role-playing game? Are you nuts?” 
    ― CD PROJEKT RED
  • MadFrenchieMadFrenchie Member LegendaryPosts: 8,483
    edited May 2018
    Eldurian said:
    Beatnik59 said:
    Eldurian said:

    If you don't trust them enough to let them make the decision on something as small as buying trading cards, you aren't raising a children who can think for themselves.
    I think the difference is in the very term "trading cards."  Everybody who buys a pack gets the gum, and ten or so cards of various players.  But lootbox crap tends not to work like that.  You might need a mount, but you get powerups you don't need.  You might want a skin, but you get emotes.  But that's the least difference between the two.

    With trading cards, you can do with you want with them.  You can trade a card you already have to a buddy who has a card you'd like.  But lootbox crap tends not to work like that; what you get can't be transferred to anyone else.

    Besides, those trading cards don't get taken away from you, just because the publisher decides not to make them available anymore.  But the moment a game cancels, your lootbox crap disappears, with no refund or recompense.

    And, quite frankly, not even the publisher of those trading cards knows what the cards they print up today will be worth five or ten years down the road.  They print off a rookie who just got called up from the minors, and the kid says "aw hell...why can't it have been Martinez or Betts?"  But then, that rookie wins rookie of the year, takes the team to the world series in consecutive years, and goes to Cooperstown.  They may print off a card that is sure to be in demand.  But the guy gets injured and is never the same.

    Can't say the same for lootbox crap.  The publisher can manipulate how much these things are worth, and can control how much the things are worth, because they can buff or nerf these things to make them more or less valuable.

    Kids, and many adults, can be counted on to make a fair assessment about what they see.  But they don't know about the things they don't see; they are apt to trust too much that the things that remain hidden from them have their best interests at heart.  And there is a lot that remains hidden in the way that lootbox crap works.  We don't even know, and have no way to tell, if the odds of getting an item are even what the publishers say they are.
    1. You will always get cards from a booster pack, and you will always get items from a lootbox. I have opened quite a few MTG booster packs and been like "Man this is all crap, what a terrible rare!"

    2. The Netherlands and Belgium laws only apply to lootboxes which have contents that can be resold. So 100% percent of implemented laws don't deal with the issue you raised as a concern.

    3. They might not go away but try to play in tournaments at your local card shop and you will find out very fast that what is "standard legal" changes very quickly, and most of your older cards will get relegated to legacy and casual decks within a year of you buying them.
    1. No, you just repeated your mantra of physical goods one actually owns should be treated the same as content unlocks in software you don't.  Those two things aren't even close to the same, and already aren't treated the same under the eyes of the law.  So you've already lost that battle, really.

    2 . Again, I wouldn't expect the first batch of legislation to create a perfect solution.  Not sure how what you said contradicts that.

    3. Which, as shitty as that is, is STILL better than the position consumers are in with video game lootboxes.

    EDIT- Quoted wrong post.  Grr mobile site.
    craftseeker

    image
  • MadFrenchieMadFrenchie Member LegendaryPosts: 8,483
    Ungood said:
    I don't think anyone actually likes RNG Games when it comes to spending money on a game, even the people that buy them I think often wish there was another better method to achieve the same goal.

    However, with that said, I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could want government intervention into this. 

    Anyone with any clue, would know damn well that the next system will be worse if it is forced into existence due to legalities and legislation, as opposed to brought about by players voting with their wallets and making what they enjoy profitable.

    At this point, I am going to step back see what happens to the game industry in Belgium. It could simply crumble as others pointed out, as there are less people in that entire country then there are in some cities in United States. So it's not like they are needed market or coveted market, game companies could simply cease selling in that country.

    But if they are shrewd as some imagine and make them off to be, They use this as a chance to develop and test out some other more insidious and predatory monetization methods.
    Not everyone thinks the guvmemt is evil and out to get their citizens, mmkay?

    As for your "vote with your wallet," I addressed earlier how that was a fallacious argument.
    craftseeker

    image
  • EldurianEldurian Member EpicPosts: 2,736
    Government isn't evil just inept and shouldn't be used to control other people to the extent we try to.

    1. Lobbyists have massive say in the regulations we put into place. They spend massive money to ensure their studies are the ones the government sees, and just straight have all kinds of ties to politicians. It's like how we have mandated that I kids need to eat "healthy" food. When my fiancé goes shopping for the pre-school she works at it's mandated she serve this much lowfat milk, this much enriched grains, this much whole wheat etc. Great except that none of those things are actually good for you and your children, but various food industries have paid off the government to tell you they are.

    2. If a law is to be effective it must be enforced. If it must be enforced, somebody needs to enforce it. That means someone on government wages with government benefits going around to enforce all these laws. The more laws, the more time it takes, the more people you need to enforce them all. That's not even mentioning the time these companies have to spend making sure they are compliant. That costs you taxes, that cost you when your products are more expensive because the company had to hire additional lawyers and compliance officers.

    So the more nitpicky you get about "We need a law about this! We need a law about that!" the more it costs, the more room there is for lobbyists to twist these issues to suit their own agenda, and the worse everything generally becomes.

    So I care if there are people out raping and murdering. I care if there are companies putting straight poison in my food and passing it off as safe. I don't care if my neighbor is making stupid decisions that don't affect me, and if there is some company enabling him to make those stupid decisions. For those of us who don't buy lootboxes already, the difference between having this law and not having this law won't mean much other than lower game quality or higher prices if this kind of waste-of-time legislation gets passed.

    Now this is not to say this particular piece of legislation will be all that expensive, but it's like when you get 10 different 1-2 dollar add ons to your meal and at the end the waiter brings you your bill and it's 50$. Except in this case we don't actually pay attention to the bill, we just have congress raise the debt ceiling and pretend nothing is wrong.
  • TalulaRoseTalulaRose Member RarePosts: 1,247
    Ungood said:
    I don't think anyone actually likes RNG Games when it comes to spending money on a game, even the people that buy them I think often wish there was another better method to achieve the same goal.

    However, with that said, I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could want government intervention into this. 

    Anyone with any clue, would know damn well that the next system will be worse if it is forced into existence due to legalities and legislation, as opposed to brought about by players voting with their wallets and making what they enjoy profitable.

    At this point, I am going to step back see what happens to the game industry in Belgium. It could simply crumble as others pointed out, as there are less people in that entire country then there are in some cities in United States. So it's not like they are needed market or coveted market, game companies could simply cease selling in that country.

    But if they are shrewd as some imagine and make them off to be, They use this as a chance to develop and test out some other more insidious and predatory monetization methods.
    Trump supporter logic going on here.
  • EldurianEldurian Member EpicPosts: 2,736
    Believe it or not most libertarians don't support Trump. At least not in the primary election. Look up Rand Paul and Austin Peterson if you want to see a libertarian politician. 
  • UngoodUngood Member EpicPosts: 2,636
    Ungood said:
    I don't think anyone actually likes RNG Games when it comes to spending money on a game, even the people that buy them I think often wish there was another better method to achieve the same goal.

    However, with that said, I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could want government intervention into this. 

    Anyone with any clue, would know damn well that the next system will be worse if it is forced into existence due to legalities and legislation, as opposed to brought about by players voting with their wallets and making what they enjoy profitable.

    At this point, I am going to step back see what happens to the game industry in Belgium. It could simply crumble as others pointed out, as there are less people in that entire country then there are in some cities in United States. So it's not like they are needed market or coveted market, game companies could simply cease selling in that country.

    But if they are shrewd as some imagine and make them off to be, They use this as a chance to develop and test out some other more insidious and predatory monetization methods.
    Not everyone thinks the guvmemt is evil and out to get their citizens, mmkay?

    As for your "vote with your wallet," I addressed earlier how that was a fallacious argument.
    2 Points"

    1) The best governments govern least.

    And it is not about good or evil, it is about people seeking to have a complete stranger who does not know a single thing about them personally, dictate to them how they need to live their life and what they can or can't handle.

    Let that Simmer for a While.

    2) No you didn't.


    Eldurian
  • UngoodUngood Member EpicPosts: 2,636
    Iselin said:
    Ungood said:

    However, with that said, I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could want government intervention into this. 


    All gamers would obviously prefer the companies to police themselves and most likely, so would the governments. That is a basic fact of this whole loot crate thing that seems to escape a lot of you in your haste to preach about the evils of government over-regulation.

    But as history has shown to anyone who bothers to read it, it is extremely rare for industries to self regulate adequately to prevent governments from stepping in and forcing them to do it. It's in their nature to push and push the boundaries until they go too far and there are always some greedy morons that screw it up for everyone.

    What you're witnessing is this timeless phenomenon playing itself out right in front of your eyes in gaming. 






    No, governments are run by people who are so vain and egotistical that they feel they should have the right to tell others how to live, even when they have not done so well with their own life, and in a democratic government, they think at least half their population is stupid enough to let them.

    The reality is, all government want to extend their control and authority over their population, only the foolish welcome this.
    IselinEldurian
  • TalulaRoseTalulaRose Member RarePosts: 1,247
    Ungood said:
    Iselin said:
    Ungood said:

    However, with that said, I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could want government intervention into this. 


    All gamers would obviously prefer the companies to police themselves and most likely, so would the governments. That is a basic fact of this whole loot crate thing that seems to escape a lot of you in your haste to preach about the evils of government over-regulation.

    But as history has shown to anyone who bothers to read it, it is extremely rare for industries to self regulate adequately to prevent governments from stepping in and forcing them to do it. It's in their nature to push and push the boundaries until they go too far and there are always some greedy morons that screw it up for everyone.

    What you're witnessing is this timeless phenomenon playing itself out right in front of your eyes in gaming. 






    No, governments are run by people who are so vain and egotistical that they feel they should have the right to tell others how to live, even when they have not done so well with their own life, and in a democratic government, they think at least half their population is stupid enough to let them.

    The reality is, all government want to extend their control and authority over their population, only the foolish welcome this.
    If you are willing to pay for all social programs because people never take personal accountability then lets all gamble. 

    But I think you are like the people who talk about helping the homeless or those with addictions. All for it until they actually have to do something more than lip service. And lets not forget...not in my backyard.


  • MadFrenchieMadFrenchie Member LegendaryPosts: 8,483
    Ungood said:
    Ungood said:
    I don't think anyone actually likes RNG Games when it comes to spending money on a game, even the people that buy them I think often wish there was another better method to achieve the same goal.

    However, with that said, I cannot for the life of me understand how anyone could want government intervention into this. 

    Anyone with any clue, would know damn well that the next system will be worse if it is forced into existence due to legalities and legislation, as opposed to brought about by players voting with their wallets and making what they enjoy profitable.

    At this point, I am going to step back see what happens to the game industry in Belgium. It could simply crumble as others pointed out, as there are less people in that entire country then there are in some cities in United States. So it's not like they are needed market or coveted market, game companies could simply cease selling in that country.

    But if they are shrewd as some imagine and make them off to be, They use this as a chance to develop and test out some other more insidious and predatory monetization methods.
    Not everyone thinks the guvmemt is evil and out to get their citizens, mmkay?

    As for your "vote with your wallet," I addressed earlier how that was a fallacious argument.
    2 Points"

    1) The best governments govern least.

    And it is not about good or evil, it is about people seeking to have a complete stranger who does not know a single thing about them personally, dictate to them how they need to live their life and what they can or can't handle.

    Let that Simmer for a While.

    2) No you didn't.


    1)  Not hardly, the best governments govern as much as is necessary to ensure the common good is prioritized within society.  This has been the basis of government since the dawn of time.  It's about the social contract; you give up certain rights to get assurances and accomplish things you cannot as a single human being.  In general, the role of governments has served to increase the quality of life for human beings for thousands of years.  Folks invoke the spectre of big bad guvment way too often.

    2)  I did.  This idea that lootboxes are aimed at making the majority of their money by casting a wide net is silly.  And if they aren't looking to make the majority of their money by casting a wide net, asking those folks who aren't part of the whales they're already targetting to just not buy 'em does jack shit.


    image
  • MadFrenchieMadFrenchie Member LegendaryPosts: 8,483
    Ungood said:
    No, governments are run by people who are so vain and egotistical that they feel they should have the right to tell others how to live, even when they have not done so well with their own life, and in a democratic government, they think at least half their population is stupid enough to let them.

    The reality is, all government want to extend their control and authority over their population, only the foolish welcome this.
    Next time someone breaks into your home and steals your stuff, make sure you tell the government to stay the fuck outta it, they can't tell that guy he can't live as a thief.

    image
  • MadFrenchieMadFrenchie Member LegendaryPosts: 8,483
    edited May 2018
    Eldurian said:
    So I care if there are people out raping and murdering. I care if there are companies putting straight poison in my food and passing it off as safe. I don't care if my neighbor is making stupid decisions that don't affect me, and if there is some company enabling him to make those stupid decisions.
    Except someone with an interest in nutrition would likely call your decision to eat food from a sketchy provider (something he/she would be much more likely to know than you) a stupid decision that doesn't affect someone who actually cares enough about their health to research where their food comes from.

    image
  • HorusraHorusra Member EpicPosts: 4,062
    Ungood said:
    No, governments are run by people who are so vain and egotistical that they feel they should have the right to tell others how to live, even when they have not done so well with their own life, and in a democratic government, they think at least half their population is stupid enough to let them.

    The reality is, all government want to extend their control and authority over their population, only the foolish welcome this.
    Next time someone breaks into your home and steals your stuff, make sure you tell the government to stay the fuck outta it, they can't tell that guy he can't live as a thief.

    Rather just be allowed to shoot them myself.
    Eldurian
  • EldurianEldurian Member EpicPosts: 2,736
    MadFrenchie said:

    Except someone with an interest in nutrition would likely call your decision to eat food from a sketchy provider (something he/she would be much more likely to know than you) a stupid decision that doesn't affect someone who actually cares enough about their health to research where their food comes from.
    The vast majority of Americans are people eating crap that's killing them who don't care enough to research where it's coming from. Food lobbyists using the government as a tool to do their bidding have just made sure you are aware of their industry funded studies and not the counter studies.

    But the poison we put in our food are a bit more subtle. Kill you a lot more slowly then the straight crap they put in your food in some places.
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