Australian Parliment’s Environment and Communications References Committee had started examining a controversial issue of loot boxes in video gaming a couple of months back. Now that the study has been concluded, the committee has given their results which are not quite in favor of Loot Boxes.
The most prominent end result of the research has come to the conclusion that people with the gambling problem have more tendency to spend on loot boxes. The study was conducted for almost 7500 people by the Lead Investigators, Dr. David Zendle and Dr. Paul Cairns. The research started in June and in two months time the outcome has been shaped.
The functioning and thinking behind loot boxes in games have been found to be similar to gambling. Therefore, people with a gambling problem tend to use these micro-transactions as an alternative to fulfilling their addictive habits. On the contrary companies like EA refuse to put a stop to such features which even lead to criminal investigation.
The loot boxes or also known as micro-transactions have been subject to a lot of criticism lately. Players are required to spend their money on them and receive items in return that is commonly just unwanted or impractical items. It does, however, give some valuable items sometimes but players can never know what they will get.
After the functionality of loot boxes was questioned by many and even related to the working of slot machines. Australians along with many others were open to know more on this issue so that any real threat may be dealt with. Now that they have gone and done research on it, they have found harm in this widely used video games feature.
The fact that they contain chance-based items and resemble much to the real-time gambling is quite a serious threat. The Australian study even suggests that the micro-transactions could act as a gateway for gambling addicts and it might be just too late before it is regulated.
On the other hand, the game development companies are in strong support of loot boxes and even fans are being urged to support them. EA has also kept a rather firm stance on microtransactions even after all the backlash they had faced.
As it stands, this study could cast a real threat to the video game companies. A published research conducted by the Australian Parliment’s committee is not something would just go up in the air without making some noise.