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2K and Blizzard removes Loot Boxes from Belgium and Netherlands

Blizzard (World of Warcraft, Overwatch, Heores of the Storm) and 2K (Borderlands, Mafia, NBA 2K series) has removed the micro-transactions portions from their games: Overwatch, Heroes of the Storm, and NBA 2K18. This is to comply with Belgium and Netherlands’ gambling laws. The countries considers loot box as gambling. 2K’s and Blizzard’s official statement are below.

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TL;DR: In Belgium, players can’t purchase MyTeam packs (read: loot boxes) with real money, though they can still be acquired by earning currency in-game. in Netherlands, players will not be able to access Auction House, a feature that allows you to buy and sell your players. (Eurogamer.net) For Blizzard, players can no longer use real money for loot boxes in Overwatch and HoTS.

If you read the statement, 2K and Blizzard disagrees with the banning and believes they are following the law with their initial practices. They actively asked their players to contact the local government to allow their loot box system.

The loot box system is a disgusting and frustrating way to extract more money from players. While more people are growing aware of the unfair practice, there are still many players purchasing loot boxes. Last year, Blizzard earned over $3 billion USD from loot box sales. Often, gaming companies state that loot boxes are to make back the expenses from development.

Sources:

EU Blizzard Forums

2K info

Rock, Paper, Shotgun

Eurogamer

 

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