Loot boxes are the new FPS game in the game industry. They’re everywhere but now the government is becoming more involved than ever. The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) has stated that the Big 3 (Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony) are working on new policies to require loot box odds disclosure on their systems. The ESA are “major players of the video game industry work together to support the bright future of video games.” They are organization filled with members of every gaming company.
ESA’s chief counsel of tech policy, Michael Warnecke, stated that they are working with the Big 3 to create “new platform policies with respect to the use of paid loot boxes in games that are developed for their platform. Specifically, this would apply to new games and game updates that add loot box features. And it would require the disclosure of the relative rarity or probabilities of obtaining randomized virtual items in games that are available on their platforms.”
The policies are scheduled to release some time in 2020. Not only are the Big 3 involved but also several gaming companies such as: Activision Blizzard, Bandai Namco Entertainment, Bethesda, Bungie, Electronic Arts, Microsoft, Nintendo, Sony Interactive Entertainment, Take-Two Interactive, Ubisoft, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, and Wizards of the Coast.
However, there are several other companies who are part of ESA who have not committed to the future policies: 505 Games, Capcom, CI Games, Deep Silver, Disney Interactive Studios, Epic Games, Focus Home Interactive, Gearbox Publishing, GungHo, Intellivision Entertainment, Kalypso, Konami, Magic Leap, NCsoft, Natsume, Nexon, Rebellion, Riot Games, Sega, Square Enix, THQ Nordic, Tencent, and Marvelous.
With these policies in place, you can expect DLC loot boxes to come with odds before all purchases. This will help buyers make more educated decisions on whether they wish to purchase a loot box. As the policy is ESA and not a government agency, a gaming company is not forced to follow the same policies if they disagree.
How often do you buy loot boxes in your games?