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Old 11-22-2017, 09:22 AM   #1
Emabulator
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US State Senator Calls Star Wars Battlefront 2's Loot Boxes "Predatory"


GameSpot has the story.

Quote:
United States politicians representing the state of Hawaii have condemned the use of loot boxes in Star Wars Battlefront II, describing it as a "predatory practice" that can take advantage of vulnerable people. In a press conference, state representative Chris Lee said he was taking action in order to "ensure future protections for kids, youth, and everyone [else]."

"This game is a Star Wars-themed online casino designed to lure kids into spending money. It's a trap," he said. "This is something we need to address to ensure that particularly kids who are underage, who are not psychologically and emotionally mature enough to gamble--which is why gambling is prohibited under [the age of] 21--are protected from being trapped into these cycles which have compelled many folks to spend thousands of dollars in gaming fees online."

Star Wars Battlefront II allows players to purchase loot boxes that contain rewards capable of impacting gameplay. It's also possible to unlock some of the Star Wars franchises most iconic characters quicker by purchasing these. Crucially, the rewards contained in the boxes are randomised, leading many to draw comparisons to gambling.

According to Lee, legislation that could change the way games with loot boxes are sold is being looked at in Hawaii and other states.

"We're looking at legislation this coming year which could prohibit sale of these games to folks who are underage in order to protect these families, as well as prohibiting different kinds of mechanisms in those games," he explained. "We've been talking with several other states as well [and] legislators there are looking at the same thing. I think this is an appropriate time to make sure these issues are addressed before this becomes the norm for every new game."

State representative Sean Quinlan emphasised that Star Wars Battlefront II is a game that he believes is being marketed at young players. "[It's] a AAA title that's being released by the world's largest gaming studio, and it has the most popular intellectual property in the world attached to it, and it's marketed squarely at children."
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Old 11-22-2017, 09:40 AM   #2
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Great, maybe he can do something about Star Citizen now

What is it, five years of lying? Still NO GAME?
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Old 11-22-2017, 09:50 AM   #3
PacerDawn
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"This game is a Star Wars-themed online casino designed to lure kids into spending money. It's a trap," he said.
I was wondering who Hawaii state representative Chris Lee was, so I did a quick google search for his picture. He looks... interesting.



Afterward, he filibustered against a bill designed to move closer to those Star Destroyers.
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Old 11-22-2017, 10:08 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by PacerDawn View Post
I was wondering who Hawaii state representative Chris Lee was, so I did a quick google search for his picture. He looks... interesting.



Afterward, he filibustered against a bill designed to move closer to those Star Destroyers.
LOL!

Beat me to it!
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Old 11-22-2017, 10:53 AM   #5
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Wow, how pissed is Disney at EA right now? If only Disney had their own videogame company...
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Old 11-22-2017, 11:36 AM   #6
MusicToEat
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Predatory? Just what we need, big brother stepping in to "save the children". How about parents be aware of what their kids are playing/doing instead of just buying them what ever they want and then ignoring them. How are loot boxes any different then magic or Pokemon card packs, that have been around for decades?
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Old 11-22-2017, 11:47 AM   #7
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We reserve the right to protest by, oh, not buying the game. You can count me among those doing just that. I genuinely love the battlefront style of gameplay, but it's not worth it.
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Old 11-22-2017, 12:12 PM   #8
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The fear of government oversight will correct the industry going forward. Unless they give no fucks and we will all be worse off no matter the outcome.
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Old 11-22-2017, 12:51 PM   #9
LordSoth
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I am not a fan of any game or company putting "micro-transactions" in a game that's released....as a former developer I think companies doing this are bullshit. Your games should stand for themselves and not have this money grabbing bullshit in them. The whole micro crap has been ruining the industry IMO.

It sucks, cause I am a major Star Wars fan and wanted to play this. I wont touch it now with this stuff in the game....even if it's temporarily disabled. That's just EA turning it off until the bad press goes away.

Rant over
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Old 11-22-2017, 01:00 PM   #10
ElektroDragon
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If he said "It's a trap" he's clearly doing this for publicity, given that's a well known Star Wars meme.
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Old 11-22-2017, 01:21 PM   #11
SpectralThundr
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The over reaction to this is simply astounding. Truly.
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Old 11-22-2017, 01:54 PM   #12
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I'm just loving all of this.
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Old 11-22-2017, 02:25 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Kawika View Post
The fear of government oversight will correct the industry going forward. Unless they give no fucks and we will all be worse off no matter the outcome.
EA and their ilk will pay the government fines (or bribes through lobbyists), put a disclaimer on the box next to the useless rating, and go about business as usual.
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Old 11-22-2017, 03:25 PM   #14
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I'll bet all the F2P mobile companies will be very unhappy with EA et al. They got away with it for many years with the "Free" excuse but if the EU legislate against loot boxes in AAA then presumably it will encompass Free also as all the same arguments apply.

Personally never like any of the F2P model games as they just aren't fun to actually play so the same model in full priced games was very concerning as a gamer and TBH good riddance if it goes.

Like others say lobbying will help but if it goes into EU law then that's too many countries to lobby. With limited knowledge of the Sates I'm of the understanding that you could get "bans" in certain states but not in others, any of which essentially kills the model.

Lots of talk about gamers being whiney complainers... but ultimately non gamers are extremely suspicious of gaming and blame it for many ills in society, specifically violence. Being tarred with the "converting kids into gambling addicts".. well any logical arguments are right out of the window as all they see is Gaming now = Gambling. Logical argument and reason died a number of years ago now.. so EA are basically fucked wrt loot boxes and may take the rest of them down with it.

Interesting to see if they are brave/stupid enough to even consider turning them back on now.. even just cosmetics... not even sure the big D will allow them to, I know they have said they will but is that actually wise?

I get the overacting opinions but I'd say this has been building and is just the sum of years of customer "abuse" and it's not just this as there has been a great deal of resentment building amongst gamers about the constant Nickle and diming.

Wonder if unfortunately Dice staff will be the sacrificial lambs, unlikely that the real "culprits" will ever take any real accountability... they just take the bonuses.
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Old 11-22-2017, 06:15 PM   #15
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Old 11-22-2017, 07:19 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by RocketMagnet View Post
I'll bet all the F2P mobile companies will be very unhappy with EA et al. They got away with it for many years with the "Free" excuse but if the EU legislate against loot boxes in AAA then presumably it will encompass Free also as all the same arguments apply.
The unfortunate part is if they had stuck to just buying currency to purchase non-randomized stuff this would never have been a problem.

Less than a few years ago you bought currency and then bought what you wanted. It was much rarer to buy currency and use that to buy random blackbox crates.

People bitched about currency but that was generally limited to letting kids have access to buy the currency on their parent's iPads.

Now everyone has ditched the simple currency model and gone to the currency + random model.

I hope this causes all game companies to go back to the good ol' days when all they did was rape your wallet on stupidly expensive upgrades you could only buy with Bioware bucks or whatever but at least you knew what you were getting.

Or maybe they could go back to just making whole games again with nifty things called Expansion packs which were worth the price of admission. That's what happened with the music industry. They had to change so more songs on each album were halfway decent or price the whole thing much more attractively or people would just go get a rip.

Also, people say the price point of $60 has been around forever but I definitely remember paying more for many a Nintendo game back in the day. I think it was Ocarina of Time which ran $80? I know I for sure paid a pretty penny for a number of my favorite games from Atlus and others.
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Old 11-22-2017, 07:44 PM   #17
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I'm just loving all of this.
ME TOO! lol....just pass the popcorn and watch 'em eat each other up. Politicians v. EA, with a dash of Disney on the side. I love it.
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Old 11-22-2017, 11:11 PM   #18
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With the amount of insanity going on in the world right now, the idea that a Senator could think videogames is a good fight to start is absolutely mind blowing.

I mean, this guy HAS to be a gamer, right? And he's mad at EA? That's the only way this makes any sense.
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Old 11-23-2017, 02:30 AM   #19
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Wow, how pissed is Disney at EA right now? If only Disney had their own videogame company...
Disney is no better than EA. They saw the opportunity to throw them under the bus to save face, and did it.

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With the amount of insanity going on in the world right now, the idea that a Senator could think videogames is a good fight to start is absolutely mind blowing.

I mean, this guy HAS to be a gamer, right? And he's mad at EA? That's the only way this makes any sense.

I remember reading a blurb online years ago, something like....In the future we will have a president who grew up playing GTA. And its true. Barron Trump will be one of many who grew up in entirely in clown world. And with the liberals officially out of things to liberate, and are now trying to upend nature, games like GTA will be a focal point on their anger. Many times kids will revolt against norms, just to be different.
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Old 11-23-2017, 08:02 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by JazGalaxy View Post
With the amount of insanity going on in the world right now, the idea that a Senator could think videogames is a good fight to start is absolutely mind blowing.

I mean, this guy HAS to be a gamer, right? And he's mad at EA? That's the only way this makes any sense.
Chris Lee is a Democratic member of the House of Representatives. He's not a Senator. I only just noticed the mistake in this thread title which can create more confusion. He's a young liberal activist state representative pretty new on the scene and quickly ruining what's left of Hawaii's dwindling economy with his idiotic universal income plan throwing money at everyone, employed or not. The only logical explanation for him stepping up now is he wants payouts from EA and a new tax on games in his state.

In short, they see money is being made and want a piece.
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