It seems that the issue of microtransactions and loot boxes have escalated even quicker and further after the fiasco that exploded from Star Wars Battlefront II, published by Electronic Arts and developed by DICE. After the outrage over Reddit, the publisher immediately disabled microtransactions temporarily from its game before launch after getting a word from Disney.
However, this controversy with loot boxes have spread out a lot faster than expected. Belgium’s Gaming Commission recently announced that they will try to ban loot boxes across Europe after concluding that microtransactions and loot boxes are forms of gambling.
VTM News, via PC Gamer, reported that Belgium’s Gaming Commission finished their ongoing investigation in loot boxes if they are supposedly tagged as a form of gambling in video-games. The commission settled that “mixing of money and addiction” is already considered to be gambling. According to Belgian Minster of Justice, Koe Geens, having both addiction and money involved are no different from gambling. He also added that in-game purchases that involved randomized items gained in return with real money will be banned immediately.
“Mixing gambling and gaming, especially at a young age, is dangerous for the mental health of the child.” – Koe Geens, Belgian Minster of Justice.
The Belgian Minister further said that he will be taking these concerns about loot boxes as a form of gambling to Europe and “will certainly try to ban [lootboxes]”.