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Loot Boxes (You knew it was coming)

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Comments

  • edited May 13
    creativly wrote: »
    Will this effect TERA too? I do hope so. No more pointless RNG gambling from loot boxes.

    FYI that I merged your thread with the existing one on the same subject.

    And see also this thread for why this particular proposal (even if it went through) is unlikely to affect a game like TERA. This is not an all-purpose "ban all lootboxes" bill, but specifically to protect children.

    Doesn't mean there might not be other proposals or changes.
  • tisnotmetisnotme ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 13
    creativly wrote: »
    \Just make those loot box items one-time direct purchase from the shop.

    they tried making them a one time direct purchase and at the price they apparently needed to be no one bought them and kept buying the loot boxes , go figure
    so they dropped the one of payment setup
  • LatzaLatza ✭✭
    edited May 13
    While this likely won't affect TERA (or most games for that matter), if this passes, it opens the doors to further discussion regarding lootboxes. I personally would like to see a complete ban of lootboxes in the United States. I have no problem with spending more money for a dyeable version of an outfit as long as the price isn't obnoxious. I have bought the dyeable Celestial costume, as well as the special effect Celestial weapon skin, twice since returning to the game. I think the price is a little too high on those items and that the price would best be suited as $30, but atleast I had that option, and having that option made me a lot happier and willing to spend the money.
  • MaxmilianMaxmilian ✭✭
    edited May 13
    tera knows we will gladly pay whatever price for the costumes/cosmetics/pets/mounts we want.

    it makes them more money to scalp us with lootboxes. the avarice and contempt for consumers displayed by the modern gaming industry as a whole have caused them to fly too close to the sun.
    they were warned. whatever happens will only affect us consumers positively, trust in that.
  • I mean think about it. If you spend over $200 on the loot boxes trying to get a rare virtual costume or mount, you should be guaranteed and entitled to get it instead of junk + worthless items that are worth less than 150k in value total (with a bunch of golden talents and other garbage from RNG) losing so much. The loot box value and mount can be placed from 500,000 gold to over 1 million gold on the Trade Brokerage which is ridiculous. Some of the items cannot even be found in the Brokerage due to most people trying to avoid RNGing from loot boxes. So if you have very bad RNG/luck, then sucks to be you, right? ;)
  • MargaretRoseMargaretRose ✭✭✭✭✭
    Maxmilian wrote: »
    tera knows we will gladly pay whatever price for the costumes/cosmetics/pets/mounts we want.

    it makes them more money to scalp us with lootboxes. the avarice and contempt for consumers displayed by the modern gaming industry as a whole have caused them to fly too close to the sun.
    they were warned. whatever happens will only affect us consumers positively, trust in that.

    Minus Warframe.
  • MargaretRoseMargaretRose ✭✭✭✭✭
    Current business model in a nutshell.
    giphy.gif
  • Elinu1Elinu1 Canada ✭✭✭✭
    Loot boxes are a total scam, most of the time you have to open over 100 boxes just to get 1 of the item you want. Lootboxes are just like slot machines, you always lose.
  • MargaretRoseMargaretRose ✭✭✭✭✭
    Elinu1 wrote: »
    Loot boxes are a total scam, most of the time you have to open over 100 boxes just to get 1 of the item you want. Lootboxes are just like slot machines, you always lose.

    27c20aaf0feda17d52c37c74d9f72072eddb5351_hq.gif
  • gheneaghenea ✭✭
    edited May 14
    creativly wrote: »
    Will this effect TERA too? I do hope so. No more pointless RNG gambling from loot boxes.

    FYI that I merged your thread with the existing one on the same subject.

    And see also this thread for why this particular proposal (even if it went through) is unlikely to affect a game like TERA. This is not an all-purpose "ban all lootboxes" bill, but specifically to protect children.

    Doesn't mean there might not be other proposals or changes.

    18uotlm4ra3kwjpg.jpg
    it will work just as good as the "i am 18" button on *hard content* sites, wink wink
    "do you certify you are 18 blahblah?"
    "yeah sure, i totally do B) "

    or let me imagine how "harder measures" would go...
    "we require you to provide id card and credit card (!!!) datas to register" (if that is legal/possible even to ask for)
    "dad, this thing asks me for datas, can i use yours? B) "

    that is why these kind of restrictions make no sense, and also why we shouldnt let ye olde people make laws about things they do not understand because they never first-hand experienced them.
    also, requiring credit/id card would make games not any different from a legit gambling website, and despite your moral views on gambling/gambling sites as a whole, you are going to legitimate em to introduce even worse rng/p2w content because since now that "only legals" (as if) can partecipate, there is no reason to hold back anymore and may as well remove any previous failcap system (as if we ever had one) or direct buy to put it all in lootboxes, for the pleasure of "legal" playerbase.
    so, while in theory losing all the minors playerbase (which i can tell you, is quite wide) or forcing em to just go anonymous (thus making it even more vicious and possibly dangerous), you also end up screwing the adult players left in game.

    i would say that is a double sided blade, but i think a more fitting comparison would be hitting an iceberg while trying to avoid an icecube lol
    and all that for what...? because you do not intend on changing your business model to something more *human*, let alone morals...
  • According to the Terms of Service on the En Masse website the minimum age to play Tera is 13. Granted, 13-18 year old players do need consent of a parent or guardian, but this is also true of EA Origin which is presumably being targeted by this bill. Of the various games I checked, only Fortnite seems to have no minimum age limit.

    So this bill will impact NA Tera unless En Masse changes its ToS to outright ban players under the age of 18 whether or not parents consent, or offer alternate "youth" accounts that can't access the store at all.


    But it's possible Tera's lootboxes are already gambling under existing laws. Until recently I would have compared loot boxes to card packs of Magic the Gathering or similar games which are legal. However I recently saw this video from "YouTuber Law" that explains the difference.



    While the lawsuits accusing Wizards of the Coast of gambling were thrown out by technicality and don't establishment a legal precedent, the thought processes of judges show some important differences that don't look good for Tera's current monetization.

    Essentially baseball cards, Magic cards, etc. can sell randomized packs that may contain rare cards because there is sufficient value in the packs that people would buy them without the rare cards. It's not that you get "something" but that what you get is approximate to what most people would be willing to spend that money on anyway.

    What this would mean - and again this isn't case law yet - is that randomization is only acceptable if a jackpot or rare reward is incidental to the purchase. It can't be "the" reason a typical player would buy something.

    So the question then is this: would the average, reasonable player be willing to spend $1.95 for 300 metamorphic emblems and a crafter cure or niveot without any chance of a bonus item? If the answer is no, then Tera's lootboxes are gambling.

    Also consider that collectible card games accurately market their products as "booster packs." They make it clear they are selling a set of randomized cards. There is no "Black Lotus Pack" that advertises the pack based on a chance for what Google tells me is a rare card. However Tera specifically markets and even names their lootboxes based on the jackpot rewards. That indicates people are buying the lootboxes for the jackpot and not for what is guaranteed - and that would be gambling.

    So Tera is guilty, right? Well, no, not necessarily. What would be a fairly easy case to prosecute if Tera's boxes were actual, physical products instead becomes way more complicated with these being digital items in an online game. Online gambling itself is still very much a gray area, and gambling real money for digital goods opens a whole other can of worms. We don't really have property rights within what's effectively an online service. We don't technically own any of our characters or accounts so much as we are renting/licensing them for as long as the servers run, so can you gamble for something if you can never truly own it?

    All this being said, it would probably be smart for BHS and Tera to "go legit" and remove gambling elements. They already have things in the Tera store that aren't gambling, such as the smart boxes guaranteed to give a costume/pet/mount. The garment bags are actually not gambling because they're advertised as a random costume and that's exactly what you get - that's randomization done properly.

    They could still include randomization within their boxes as long as the guaranteed reward is worth the price in the eyes of reasonable consumers. So it would be fine if a Devilicious loot box guarantees a regular Devilicious costume but has an uncommon chance for a black, gold or silver variety and a rare chance for a dyeable. That meets the criteria of promotion while retaining value of what you're buying.

    Another option could be that instead of a paltry number of metamorphic emblems each lootbox guarantees enough of the new Terachic Boutique coins (that you get from dismantling costumes) to buy a random costume. That way if you don't get exactly what you're looking for, you at least get some cosmetic item.

    Or hell, they could have each lootbox guarantee, say, 500 golden talents - which could be crafted into 300 darics or 180 plates - and they'd address two problems at once while making a lot more money.

    Point is there are alternatives to the current loot box system that can, and imo should, be considered.
  • edited May 16
    KFGRWRD3XH wrote: »
    According to the Terms of Service on the En Masse website the minimum age to play Tera is 13. Granted, 13-18 year old players do need consent of a parent or guardian, but this is also true of EA Origin which is presumably being targeted by this bill. Of the various games I checked, only Fortnite seems to have no minimum age limit.

    So this bill will impact NA Tera unless En Masse changes its ToS to outright ban players under the age of 18 whether or not parents consent, or offer alternate "youth" accounts that can't access the store at all.

    Creating an account is one thing, but the game itself is also ESRB rated M. So even though legally players under 18 are allowed to create an EME account with the approval of their parents/guardian, you'd still have a pretty hard time arguing that this game and its monetization are "targeting children". I'm not even sure it's actually possible to "outright ban players under the age of 18" because if they have their parents'/guardian's permission to create the account anyway, it's already legally under their adult authority. A "ban" wouldn't really change that a parent could sign up in their own name and let their kids play on their account. You could argue this gesture would make it even more obvious that EME isn't targeting the game at children, but I think you'd have a pretty hard time sustaining that argument already.

    KFGRWRD3XH wrote: »
    Essentially baseball cards, Magic cards, etc. can sell randomized packs that may contain rare cards because there is sufficient value in the packs that people would buy them without the rare cards. It's not that you get "something" but that what you get is approximate to what most people would be willing to spend that money on anyway.

    What this would mean - and again this isn't case law yet - is that randomization is only acceptable if a jackpot or rare reward is incidental to the purchase. It can't be "the" reason a typical player would buy something.

    So the question then is this: would the average, reasonable player be willing to spend $1.95 for 300 metamorphic emblems and a crafter cure or niveot without any chance of a bonus item? If the answer is no, then Tera's lootboxes are gambling.

    This argument is kind of spurious. Who gets to decide the "value" of a purchase? EME could just as soon list 300 metamorphics, crafters cure, and a niveot for direct purchase on their store for 995 EMP and declare by fiat that is their cash value. People can say "no one would ever buy it at that price" but they're digital products with no manufacturing cost, and they cannot be exchanged for real money. The price is completely arbitrary and defined by the parameters of the game they created. They could completely strangle supply of those items in the game *so that* they're now going to be "worth that much." The entire value economy is literally a game they control.

    And you can't really tell me that a person who buys 100 baseball/Magic/whatever card packs and ends up with zero valuable cards is going to say it was worth their money. If that happened all the time, the whole market would dry up completely; the "chase items" are what make the whole thing worthwhile. Of course the sellers argue that the buyer did receive what they paid for ("items of equivalent value") when they bought the card pack, but the price people are actually willing to pay per pack has amortized the value of the rares over the whole set. On the statistical average if you open <x> packs, you would get <y> value, and getting the rare/super-rare prizes is part of that total. People's belief in that principle is what makes them willing to keep buying.


    And also...
    KFGRWRD3XH wrote: »
    The garment bags are actually not gambling because they're advertised as a random costume and that's exactly what you get - that's randomization done properly.

    If you're going to say the rest is gambling, then it's hard to see why this isn't, because the reality is that not all costumes are of the same cash value (based on previous cash shop prices, never mind in-game rarity). Yes, people do get a costume every time, but the might get a "normal" costume, a "rare" costume, or a "super rare" costume, and it may not be the specific one they are pining for. So, it's basically the card pack problem again (or basically the same as a lot of mobile gacha games).


    Anyway, I do think EME should move away from chase item lootboxes, but I don't think arguments like these really hold up all that well. As you go on to imply, it's trying to take physical item principles and apply them to virtual items in an entirely-developer-controlled space. That's why they need to come up with completely new ways of thinking about this that address the issues that need to be solved.


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