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Post Reply Microtransactions -- Enough is Enough ?
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Posted 11/4/17 , edited 11/4/17
There are a lot of videos and articles about microtransactions/loot boxes over the past 3-4 weeks. The recent game releases seem to be wired with microtransactions

Assassin Creed Origins
StarWar Battlefront 2
Middle Earth: Shadow of War
COD: WWII
etc.

Call of Duty: WWII - Call Of Looty (Jimpressions)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=alZoa520xtw

Uh Oh...Activision Files Patent For “Driving Microtransactions”, Call of Duty WW2 Loot Boxes
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iw_R2u00-fc

We are not looking at another potential video game crash are we?

https://www.lifewire.com/the-industry-crash-and-rebirth-729749
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Posted 11/4/17 , edited 11/4/17
Loot boxes are probably the most insidious use of microtransactions we've seen in gaming yet. I mean, I thought season passes were bad, since they asked you to buy microtransactions and dlc without even knowing what microtransactions and dlc youre buying ahead of time, but loot boxes combine that with actual freaking gambling to do it while ignoring all the restrictions the law puts on gambling. It's disgusting.

Also this should be in gaming.
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Posted 11/4/17 , edited 11/4/17
ESRB will not consider loot boxes as gambling though... "the players will get something" they said.

https://kotaku.com/esrb-says-it-doesnt-see-loot-boxes-as-gambling-1819363091
https://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2017/10/12/the-esrb-is-wrong-about-loot-boxes-and-gambling/#150a26f42a64
http://www.pcgamer.com/loot-boxes-are-not-gambling-according-to-the-esrb/

It's the same tactic that companies used to do with their action figures in those 0.50/spin vending machines. As consumers we can speak with our wallet, I would just not spend any money on games with microtransactions... if they want to target underage kids with their games let them do it. soon we will have another lawsuit like the one where the parents and ftc sued amazon over transactions made by their children. FTC won the case btw
https://www.wsj.com/articles/ftc-sues-amazon-over-in-app-purchases-by-children-1405012533




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Posted 11/4/17 , edited 11/4/17
Companies gotta get money somehow. Also, if people are willing to spend their money on the micro-transactions, why not? Gives the company more money to make more games. Star Wars Battlefront 2 is littered with said micro-transactions because people cried for for free stuff though, just saying. No DLC packs = micro-transactions instead.
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Posted 11/4/17 , edited 11/4/17

AnimeAddictANN69 wrote:

ESRB will not consider loot boxes as gambling though... "the players will get something" they said.

https://kotaku.com/esrb-says-it-doesnt-see-loot-boxes-as-gambling-1819363091
https://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2017/10/12/the-esrb-is-wrong-about-loot-boxes-and-gambling/#150a26f42a64
http://www.pcgamer.com/loot-boxes-are-not-gambling-according-to-the-esrb/

It's the same tactic that companies used to do with their action figures in those 0.50/spin vending machines. As consumers we can speak with our wallet, I would just not spend any money on games with microtransactions... if they want to target underage kids with their games let them do it. soon we will have another lawsuit like the one where the parents and ftc sued amazon over transactions made by their children. FTC won the case btw
https://www.wsj.com/articles/ftc-sues-amazon-over-in-app-purchases-by-children-1405012533






Gashapon machines are still subject to restriction and scrutiny because they are gambling while lootboxes in video games are not. What kind of sense does that make?
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Posted 11/4/17 , edited 11/4/17
when you are locking endings and forced "pay to win" or grind forever for some digital currency.. eh..


I like this approach. Put a label on any game with microtransaction so the customers will be more informed. I doubt most parents are into gaming or know what are included in the games they are buying for their kids..

https://www.polygon.com/2017/10/9/16447682/opencritic-microtransactions-backlash-loot-boxes-shadow-of-war





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Posted 11/4/17 , edited 11/5/17
I’m fine with micro-transactions that add items that are purely cosmetic. However I think micro-transactions that add an advantage to a player are horrible and should be removed. Why should some players suffer because they can’t/won’t fork over money?
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Posted 11/5/17 , edited 11/5/17
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Posted 11/11/17 , edited 11/12/17
meh, I don't really care about loot boxes since you are basically paying for in-game stuff (of course this isn't always the case since some games have loot box exclusives). So I just play the game and get said item. If people want to waste their money on stuff then let them.

^I doubt what that person said is true about "doesn't exist in online gaming", I can easily program a "truly random" loot box.
And why is the person's example for the non-random stuff weird? truly and compounding are exactly the same except for the price of the spin.
Has anyone actually seen compounding? It seems like the complete opposite of gambling, which is the idea of paying less to get more. The problem with compounding is that eventually the price of the spin will cost more than the actual thing you are trying to get. Thats like if someone has a book for sale for $5 and you say "I'll buy it for $10" and then complaining how you got ripped off. Kinda reminds me of The Office where Dwight bids that exact value for everything at the silent auction.
*air quotes used since anything that is programmed isn't really random.

edit: yeah I'm against gambling for kids, but if you're an adult and you waste your money on stuff then that's on you.
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Posted 11/11/17 , edited 11/12/17
I wouldn't say this would cause another crash, but it is still a big problem. We are now seeing microtransactions within single player games, which is just wrong. Let alone the pay to win bullshit that we find in triple a games.

Some companies have used a microtransactions in a good way. A great example of this is Rainbow 6 Siege. The game is packed with loot boxes, but in exchange, we get free expansions which comes with new maps and operators.

The way I see it, if their are microtransactions within a paid game, then all future DLC and expansions should be free.
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Posted 11/12/17 , edited 11/12/17
I ALREADY PAID 60 FRICKIN DOLLARS FOR THIS GAME WHY DO I NEED TO SPEND 25 MORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Posted 11/12/17 , edited 11/16/17

MrFuriousNerd wrote:



The way I see it, if their are microtransactions within a paid game, then all future DLC and expansions should be free.


They will take every chance they get to maximize profits. They will milk the gamers as much as they can for sure.

I think this is getting worst with kids playing these games-- using their parents' credit cards to pay for those lots :rolleyes:

**updated**

Finally!!

Battlefront II, Overwatch under scrutiny by Belgian gambling regulator
https://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/309742/Battlefront_II_Overwatch_under_scrutiny_by_Belgian_gambling_regulator.php



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Posted 11/16/17 , edited 11/16/17
It often feels like people will complain about anything these days.
Loot boxes/crates are as much "gambling" as if you went to a dollar store and bought a $0.50 grab bag.
There is the off chance that you will have 3-4 items that are valued at $0.25-1.00 and, randomly, you may find that one of the items has a store value of $5.00.
Yes, there is a psychological element of "opening a box/gift" for various items; it's a system that has been tried and proven throughout time.
Everything from holidays (Christmas) to birthdays, the mystery of what you're getting is what makes people (kids included) excited for these times.
In other words: it isn't much different than a kid opening presents during these holidays/birthdays but with far greater availability to access loot boxes/crates.

As long as there are demands from gamers/customers (professional voice-overs, "4K" graphics, great storylines/plots, etc) and as long as game developers continue to pander to the gamers, they will keep attempting to make a profit at any means necessary.
Gamers protest/outcry, publishers change how they do something.
Gamers protest/outcry again about the same thing, game is already out in production with development road maps finalized (or near it).
Microtransactions solved issues for games that were already or had turned "Free to Play" (see: Team Fortress 2).
They manipulated their fan-base, knowing that they weren't going to add too much developmental effort to the game any longer (small updates, new skins/items), so they ended up moving TF2 to the F2P module with microtransactions (allowing those once-pay to play players be their marketing voice).

Even with that kind of system in place, rarity will always dictate desire.
You can get the absolute shittiest item in the game but if there's a 0.0001% chance of getting it while defeating a boss or after a round - you will either brag that you got it or sell it at some obscure price because you know someone will buy it (in-game currency or real life money via eBay).

Publishers have had a "post-purchase revenue" system in place for over 20 years now.
Expansion packs were the first form of these kinds of revenue streams; some were full development-sprints that required them to be valued/priced at $50 or higher (but required the "core" game too).
Then came "downloadable content" (DLC) where they were just the quicker, shorter development sprint when compared to most expansion packs but kept up with the tradition that gamers that loved the game would want "additional content".
Then came microtransactions (not loot boxes yet) - these are the "small DLC" packs you can purchase that contains costumes, in-game items, and the likes (see: single-player RPGs that you can buy "potion packs" from PSN or Steam for).
Finally, we have the loot boxes/crates.
This system is designed to get a few bucks from gamers who have zero interest in DLC and don't mind throwing $10-20 more at a game if it means "getting something they want".

The reality is that you still end up getting something for your money.
The publisher/developer states the "real life value" of the in-game currency (so many in-game coins for your $10 purchase).
They then add a numerical value (worth) of coins to the loot box/crate.
You obtain X amount of items for your Y amount of coins, that you spent Z amount of money on.
Since most of these items do not have an in-game value, they're equally valued.
In Overwatch, you can extrapolate the "real life" ($$) value of rare/event items because you can purchase them directly with enough coins (which you earn from duplicates or random chests in your loot box).
But I agree with the ESRB: it is not gambling because you're getting something of known value from your purchase.
Gambling implies that you are going in with just the raw chance of winning - but you could also end up losing your money.
You never lose your money in these loot crates, even if you were to get "all duplicates" (as most systems reward you with an equivalent value of in-game currency/coins).

Overall, people doth complain too much.
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Posted 11/16/17 , edited 11/16/17

MonoDreams wrote:

Companies gotta get money somehow. Also, if people are willing to spend their money on the micro-transactions, why not? Gives the company more money to make more games. Star Wars Battlefront 2 is littered with said micro-transactions because people cried for for free stuff though, just saying. No DLC packs = micro-transactions instead.


because they're already making significant profits to begin with
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qq6HcKj59Q
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Posted 11/16/17 , edited 11/16/17

Sequine wrote:

because they're already making significant profits to begin with
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qq6HcKj59Q


Holy hell, that guy's graphs trigger my autism. (joke)
They're poorly constructed and his arguments don't jump into the fact that cost of development went up over the course of the same years he focused on.
"Sales of Goods" is not a definite margin of profit.

Mass Effect: Andromeda cost over $70,000,000 to make.
Sure, it did raise EA's marks to a profitable one for the fiscal year.
But that was with all of its other games for the fiscal year as well.
That's with the negative backlash that gamers spewed at Mass Effect: Andromeda.
The same will be said about Battlefront 2 in another fiscal quarter, I'm sure.
That's mostly will be due to the microtransactions/loot boxes.
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