Back during the controversy about the microtransactions of Star Wars: Battlefront 2, several countries, among them Belgium, took the most extreme step and completely banned microtransactions from games released in the country. Now, after a long and drawn-out legal battle, EA is kneeling to Belgium’s laws and getting rid of EA Belgium microtransactions.
These old microtransactions came in the form of FIFA Points, which you could buy using real money and use them to, in turn, buy players to use in FIFA 19’s Ultimate Team. The debate first started in September of last year when Belgium banned microtransactions and loot boxes from games sold within its borders, claiming that they constituted gambling (something not entirely unfounded.)
However, EA, not wanting to lose a market, decided to fight back against the new law by refusing to modify its coding to make it so that FIFA Ultimate Team card packs would no longer be sold via EA Belgium microtransactions. They continued this even after a number of other games that sported microtransactions and loot boxes, among them Blizzard, 2K Games, and Valve.
This is the latest blow to EA in the gaming world’s crusade against microtransactions, which many gamers have accused of being extremely predatory and getting to the point where they’re not “micro” at all, especially in games like Fallout 76 and various sports games like FIFA and others where the supposedly “micro” transactions can get very high indeed.
However, now that EA has backed down from that, we may see more developers start to back down from microtransactions, lest they start to be hit with legal action from various other countries. This will likely also impact EA’s microtransaction schemes for the same reason.
While you can no longer make use of EA Belgium microtransactions, you can still play FIFA 19 on any system that it’s available for.