The Battlefront II Loot Boxes controversy has perhaps become the defining event which could decide possibly decide how publishers implement microtransactions in the future.
A few weeks back Hawaii State representatives held a press conference Chris Lee and Sean Quinlan held a press conference on loot boxes and EA’s predatory and exploitative practices.
The crux of the press conference revolved around the Battlefront II Loot Boxes controversy, and how these microtransactions may have an affect on children.
In a recent follow up interview with Glixel Sean Quinlan responded to several Organizations such as the ESRB who recently stated that loot boxes don’t technically fit the definition of gambling.
“I think the mechanism is so close to gambling, when we talk about psychology and the way addiction and reward works, I think whether or not it means the strict definition of gambling, it’s close enough and the impact is close enough.”
Quinlan also went on to say that EA would definitely try this again and I think he is right. EA has recently done the same thing with FIFA 18 and UFC 3 as well. The latter also give birth to the #Fix FIFA campaign which urged other players to boycott in- game purchases till EA fixes the problem.
Alas consumers have a short memory and one criticism that comes our way frequently is that we vote with our wallets. While it may have been the case in the past the significant attention that this fiasco has received may have changed the opinions of the consumer
“This is the straw that broke the camel’s back. EA and Disney are two of the largest companies not just in America, but the world and Star Wars is such a beloved property. That it is being used for evil is especially upsetting.”
“For this particular game, I think EA is between a rock and a hard place, but we as consumers have a short memory. I’m sure they will try something like this very soon. As someone who has watched EA develop over the years and consume some of my favorite studios and destroy so many franchises, I don’t think this is going away. And I’m definitely going to stick to this. It’s an important issue for me.”
EA’s silence on the issue says volumes, and for the sake of the fans and the gaming industry in general I sincerely hope that the Battlefront II Loot Boxes can sway the opinions of not only the hardcore gamers , but the casuals as well.