- Mike Gallagher, the President of the Entertainment Software Association, defended lootboxes in a talk
- The comments come via gamesindustry.biz , from a talk he gave at the Nordic Game Conference
- Mike Gallagher is critical of their comparisons to Gambling.
Mike Gallagher, the president of the Entertainment Software Association, gave a talk at the Nordic Game Conference earlier in the month, defending Games’ use of lootboxes as a revenue stream, and defended their reputation in comparison to Lootboxes.
The comments come via gamesindustry.biz, and after several key moments in the industry, like the Dutch finding lootboxes in violation of the Better Gaming Act, the World Health Organisation discussing a Gaming Disorder, and Lootboxes being found as Illegal in Belgium.
Mike Gallagher defended the industry’s use of lootboxes, with pretty much everything we’ve already heard about defending lootboxes in the past:
“Video games never take money from a player and leave them with nothing. They never do”.
“It’s one of the hallmarks of our success: how we engage consumers, and build a business model around our products that is dynamic, exciting and, at the end of the day, profitable”.
I won’t argue against that, it’s successful, it’s proven to be dynamic and exciting, and it’s overwhelmingly profitable – all we need to confirm that is the success of Overwatch.
But at the end of the day, come on, some of these systems are eerily similar to slot machines.
How can this keep going on? Sometimes these rewards are completely worthless, nevermind that the consumer always gets something.
I interviewed Joshua Krook, an Academic in Adelaide who has great interest in this topic, who definitely understands lootboxes to be Gambling. You can find the interview here.
We can decide with our wallets, sure, and we’ve done so before, sure, that’s why Battlefield V is dumping the Lootbox model after Battlefront II, but at some point we need to understand that the rewards incentive of Lootboxes fosters Gambling Addiction.
Spend smart, Gamers.