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LOOTBOXES: If it's gambling, should it be regulated? | RAMBLE

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Frankly, only if they provide actual in-game buffs/benefits.

I don't necessarily LIKE the practice of lootboxes in general, but as long as the items involved are purely cosmetic (such as the ones in Overwatch, since he used theirs in his thumbnail image), then I'm fine with lootbox systems so long as there ARE ways to earn/unlock them without being forced to pay (especially in non-Free2Play games, again, like Overwatch).

It's like when Payday 2 introduced their Safes and Drills system. I wouldn't have necessarily been happy about it, but it was the fact that they included in-game buffs that drove me away from the game (that and the weapon re-balance in general ruining the feel of the gunplay for me, but yeah).

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Wish I had something of value to add but I can see both the Pros and Cons to them. I have in the past taken part in some Micro Transaction in games but it is only for something I saw value in. I am more inclined to be more in favor for free games as they are initially offering it for free and hell everyone needs to make a living on their work. On the other hand I have seen full well what a major effect it can have on my kids. One of my sons has spent most of his gift money on micro-transactions in free games like Dota and in some others. As a Parent you want to say what the hell and yes we had discussions but at the same time they need to learn for themselves. Now he not as inclined to spend his money on them but I can also see the compulsion argument to it.

Does the Govt need to get involved? Which Govt? As games now go world wide where does the responsibility fall. For me I do not necessarily see the Govt being a big help in the near future and to be totally honest in my opinion the whole show them with your pocket book is a great chant but unless it is very organized it really does not have a great effect like another "protest" that eats up the headlines currently. People are going to buy what they see value in. Id also say be careful what you ask to be regulated because regulation almost always ends up coming in your own backyard because you opened the gate. It takes over more than you wanted it to.

That's my 2 cents and cant really say if I added anything but my chest fells lighter. :D

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3 hours ago, Sup3rNo7a said:

Frankly, only if they provide actual in-game buffs/benefits.

I don't necessarily LIKE the practice of lootboxes in general, but as long as the items involved are purely cosmetic (such as the ones in Overwatch, since he used theirs in his thumbnail image), then I'm fine with lootbox systems so long as there ARE ways to earn/unlock them without being forced to pay (especially in non-Free2Play games, again, like Overwatch).

It's like when Payday 2 introduced their Safes and Drills system. I wouldn't have necessarily been happy about it, but it was the fact that they included in-game buffs that drove me away from the game (that and the weapon re-balance in general ruining the feel of the gunplay for me, but yeah).

Wiki says, "Loot boxes are regulated under gambling law in some Asian countries. Elsewhere they are criticised for being a form of unregulated gambling, for creating situations in games that make them "pay-to-win", and otherwise seen as anti-consumer when used with full-priced games. They are a common source of the virtual items used in skin gambling."

I have bought stuff. I see all of it as microtransactions. You pay, one way or another, for something you want in game. I don't care if it is cosmetic or not. I see it the same as buying the fantasy figure that sits on my desk. 

I don't see much difference between a shopaholic and a gambler. It is definitely a problem for children.

Actually it is a problem for anyone ... just children are being moulded into adults and you don't want them to grow up with compulsive behaviors. Adults... well adults can learn to control compulsions, but adults are not easily moulded.

Edited by Cryzeteur

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Thinking about it I would add. The problem that makes it gambling is that what you purchase is randomized. Otherwise it would be microtransactions. This is the problem I found with Gwent online. Getting the right cards encouraged buying randomized cards. You could spend $50 easily and not get the right cards.

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2 hours ago, Cryzeteur said:

Thinking about it I would add. The problem that makes it gambling is that what you purchase is randomized. Otherwise it would be microtransactions. This is the problem I found with Gwent online. Getting the right cards encouraged buying randomized cards. You could spend $50 easily and not get the right cards.

That's not really any different from real-life card games, though (such as yugioh, pokemon, or magic). You buy packs from the store (lootboxes) and are stuck with whatever random cards happen to be inside. That doesn't mean it's a good practice still, but for card games like Gwent especially it's nothing new at all.

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11 hours ago, Sup3rNo7a said:

That's not really any different from real-life card games, though (such as yugioh, pokemon, or magic). You buy packs from the store (lootboxes) and are stuck with whatever random cards happen to be inside. That doesn't mean it's a good practice still, but for card games like Gwent especially it's nothing new at all.

Yup. Exactly the same. 

I myself am a magic:the gathering player. And I only buy booster packs once in a while. And only like 2 or 3. 

I used to buy more, but then I didn't get any card I wanted, ended up with a bunch of cards I'll never use and selling them didn't get my money back, so I decided to stop buying booster packs and buy the cards I needed instead. Which is the same as micro transactions only with the difference that magic is always adding new expansions so if you want to play you need to change your cards every few months (just spent $50 buying cards for my new deck after the standard rotation). 

You also need to pay to play in events so it's a very expensive hobby. 

 

Buying randomized loot boxes or card booster packs is exciting because you don't know what you're going to get. It's also disappointing because you don't get what you want most of the time. 

but from the other perspective is a good way to make money :/

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Key differences @Sebngarde and @Sup3rNo7a is that with Magic and Pokemon systems you are getting a physical Item.  In some cases the cards can become collector items and have a value.  With these virtual loot boxes its virtual which is the inherent problem.  It cost the developer nothing to produce.  It will initially cost them but that break point for them will be reached rather fast.  You also do not have a venue in most to sell of the junk.  Another issue is you dink and dunk your money and do not realize what you are actually spending until you step back and look how much you have actually spent.  As you said @Sebngarde you realized it was effecting your pocket book and not giving you value so you walked away but a person with an addiction can not just walk away.  And after hearing more on the subject in my honest opinion loot boxes have no business being in a single player game.  There is no reason for it.

Edited by Shadowlyn

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10 hours ago, Sebngarde said:

Yup. Exactly the same. 

I myself am a magic:the gathering player. ...

You also need to pay to play in events so it's a very expensive hobby. 

Buying randomized loot boxes or card booster packs is exciting because you don't know what you're going to get. It's also disappointing because you don't get what you want most of the time. 

but from the other perspective is a good way to make money :/

I also played Magic and gave up for the same reason. I gave a shoebox full of cards to my daughter. Hopefully her children will play against each other and not start buying more cards on the internet.

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Loot boxes are a bad idea, yes it is gambling, and a lot of parents are clueless as to digital purchasing, and may have at one point bought little timmy a game and have their card details stored on the machine.

Along comes little timmy and buys a crapton of lootboxes which prob contain 86% crap and leave mummy and daddy in debt.

Its a sly way for the game industry to squeeze money out of us.

All the crap we need to finish and enjoy a game should be accessible when we pay the €60 for the game not this frankly insulting tactic.

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On 10/12/2017 at 1:29 PM, Shadowlyn said:

Key differences @Sebngarde and @Sup3rNo7a is that with Magic and Pokemon systems you are getting a physical Item.  In some cases the cards can become collector items and have a value.  With these virtual loot boxes its virtual which is the inherent problem.  It cost the developer nothing to produce.  It will initially cost them but that break point for them will be reached rather fast.  You also do not have a venue in most to sell of the junk.  Another issue is you dink and dunk your money and do not realize what you are actually spending until you step back and look how much you have actually spent.  As you said @Sebngarde you realized it was effecting your pocket book and not giving you value so you walked away but a person with an addiction can not just walk away.  And after hearing more on the subject in my honest opinion loot boxes have no business being in a single player game.  There is no reason for it.

True that the virtual "items" don't have any lasting value (unless something like Steam Marketplace is involved, but things still rarely hold value either way, so still a fair point), but in most cases there are ways to earn those digital items for free as well, without having to pay anything. That was never the case with the physical card games. You only ever got cards from buying packs, or buying/trading them individually online/from friends/at conventions, there was no real way to earn or "craft" them for free just by playing the game like there is for the digital loot items (the grind may sometimes be absurd, which is a whole other issue, but still).

I wholeheartedly agree that they should NEVER be in single-player games, though.

Edited by Sup3rNo7a

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3 hours ago, Sup3rNo7a said:

True that the virtual "items" don't have any lasting value (unless something like Steam Marketplace is involved, but things still rarely hold value either way, so still a fair point), but in most cases there are ways to earn those digital items for free as well, without having to pay anything. That was never the case with the physical card games. You only ever got cards from buying packs, or buying/trading them individually online/from friends/at conventions, there was no real way to earn or "craft" them for free just by playing the game like there is for the digital loot items (the grind may sometimes be absurd, which is a whole other issue, but still).

I wholeheartedly agree that they should NEVER be in single-player games, though.

being able to get items for free is part of the scam, you grind with the hope of getting a special item for free, the more you grind and don't manage to drop a special item the more frustrated you become, and then suddenly paying money for a loot box starts becoming more appealing to you, so you buy one, if you don't get anything special you buy another one, then another one, before you know it you could be spending more on those loot boxes than you would on an AAA game with all its DLC.

 

That is the only reason you can potentially get the item for free, but the odds are usually so low that it entices you to pay money to raise the odds.

 

PS: they are more like scratchcards than those pokemon cards etc.

 

pps: and trading physical cards is an integral part of the system, you have a card your friend doesn't have, you can trade cards with your friend (it is all part of the experience), I do not see items from loot boxes being part of such a trade system any time soon.

 

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In these recent discussion videos Gopher has added interesting remarks on the screen, so now I can't just listen in the background and need to watch the screen, Really hinders my working at the same time :)
However I still enjoy these videos immensely.

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