This Week In The Business: Knocking Loots

"What occurs with 'loot boxes' does constitute gambling by the definition of the Victorian Legislation." — Jarrod Wolfe, a strategic analyst with the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation weighs in on loot boxes, saying the normalisation of gambling tactics "is not just morally reprehensible, but is also legally questionable."

QUOTE | "We really don't like making money off players who are in denial of their addiction. And that's what a large part of free-to-play gaming is all about." — Clicker Heroes developer Playsaurus explains why it's abandoning the free-to-play model for Clicker Heroes 2.

QUOTE | "We didn't allow Joe Camel to encourage our kids to smoke cigarettes, and we shouldn't allow Star Wars to encourage our kids to gamble." — Hawaiian state representative Sean Quinlan is among a number of legislators considering laws to curb loot boxes in the coming year.

QUOTE | "The whole notion that they're always a top-down affair forced by the publisher is preposterous, even though that makes for a nice story in the head of internet 'experts'." — Vlambeer's Rami Ismail says loot boxes aren't necessarily bad design and aren't always the idea of a greedy publisher.

QUOTE | "Some people want refunds for the XP boosts they bought and used and I'm trying to figure out how I'm going to pay for insulin." — Former Gazillion senior software engineer Andrew Hair offers some perspective after the ex-Marvel Heroes developer laid off its entire staff the day before Thanksgiving.

QUOTE | "You can't form a relationship with a mechanic the same way you can a character. And it's those relationships that stick in the player's mind even when they're not playing." — June's Journey lead writer Rebecca Harwick on the importance of narrative in casual games.

QUOTE | "A decision had to be made in terms of our relationship with the Hitman team. I wanted them to continue to develop the game, but I thought in terms of investing further in the game it would be best if they worked with another partner other than ourselves." — Square Enix president and CEO Yosuke Matsuda explains why he was willing to let IO Interactive leave the company and take the Hitman IP with it.

QUOTE | "In 2015, the prior FCC bowed to pressure from President Obama. On a party-line vote, it imposed heavy-handed, utility-style regulations upon the Internet. That decision was a mistake." — Current FCC chairman Ajit Pai has proposed scrapping net neutrality rules and allowing ISPs to charge customers and companies varying amounts and provide varying speeds depending on the content being accessed online. Pai said net neutrality has deterred innovation and prevented ISPs from improving broadband networks.

QUOTE | "Before it was the challenge of just making a game on your own, and I think now the challenge is getting people to play a game you made." — We Are Fuzzy co-founder Maxx Burman says publishers are the most valuable piece of the puzzle for indies right now.

QUOTE | "Most tabletop games run on common sense; Magic is too big, too ancient, for common sense." — Voyageur designer Bruno Dias explains how Magic: The Gathering's designers have turned the game's overly complex design into a strength rather than a weakness.

QUOTE | "I think you can go full-blown Hunger Games." — Twitch co-founder Kevin Lin says the new Twitch Extensions functionality could soon allow sponsors and viewers to influence competitions by paying for supply drops and buffs for their chosen player.


    "We didn't allow Joe Camel to encourage our kids to smoke cigarettes, and we shouldn't allow Star Wars to encourage our kids to gamble." -- Hawaiian state representative Sean Quinlan

    Bound to happen, pointing the gun at the victim (The property) and not the perpetrator (EA).

      True, but I'll let it slide due to him slipping "It's a trap!" into his speech. Admiral Ackbar would have been proud. Plus, I think he was inferring that EA is reprehensible by using pop culture's shiniest of shiny lures to indoctrinate kids into the concept of gambling and pay to win. And even if he was targeting Star Wars instead of EA he is still correct. Darth Mickey only started force-choking EA when it was clear that the pitchfork welding mob had added concerned mums and government representatives into its ranks. When it was just "whingeing, entitled gamers" having a tanty over pay to win Disney was pretty fucking quiet then, though I guess it's hard to hear their cries of moral outrage when they are swimming through a Death Star sized tank of money like ol' Uncle Scrooge McDuck. "Star Wars" itself as an IP may not be morally bunk, But it's current Daddy is the goddamn Overfiend of morally bankrupt uber-bastards, giant lazier firing penis tentacles included.

      I think you'll find that comment was aimed at disney to advocate for their license against EA.

      It's how you provoke action when your true target puts up a wall.

    I was never a fan of paid loot boxes in the first place. Good items are weighted so much it's not possible to get your money's worth by buying too many boxes.

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