Belgium’s Gambling Commission rules against loot boxes

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Kansspelcommissie, Belgium’s gaming commission ruled against a few video games and warned millionaire penalties if they’re not adjusted. The threatened operators face fines up to US$2 million if a number of popular video games are not adjusted.

The Belgian Gaming Commission calls these loot boxes game of chance, and if these are further exploited, they will insist on tough legal actions.

Kansspelcommissie explained that they started analyzing various video games in the end of 2017 to decide whether the loot boxes or the so called “in game elements” meet the definition of a game of chance. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Star Wars Battlefront II, Overwatch and FIFA 18 were among the analyzed games.

Because the phenomenon is broader than the 4 games examined, the Gaming Commission makes a number of recommendations to both the policy makers, the game manufacturers, the game platforms and the license providers such as FIFA,” said the commission, which assured that protecting players and vulnerable groups such as minors is the most important mission.

Peter Naessens, Director at the Gaming Commission, said: “Paying loot boxes are not an innocent part of video games that present themselves as games of skill. Players are seduced and deceived by it and none of the protective measures for gambling are applied. Now that it is clear that children and vulnerable people in particular are exposed to them unprotected, the game manufacturers but also the parties involved are called upon to stop this practice.