Loot Boxes: Is It a Form of Gambling or Not?

Children around the world adore playing video games and the industry responsible for the development of games and consoles is attracting more and more gamers every day, even adults. The graphics, the gameplay, the story behind the game, and the excitement of playing online with your friends enhance the level of the gaming experience. In the competitive world of game development, companies are jumping through hoops to bring innovation to their games. Among various ideas, the Loot Boxes caused much discussion. The main topic is, are the players, especially ones of a young age exposed to gambling by having Loot Boxes in video games?

What Are Loot Boxes?

Video games introduced Loot Boxes to increase the suspense and intrigue. The idea behind them is similar to the one that old TV shows had, the mystery rewards behind doors one, two, or three. Players can obtain boxes either by completing objectives or by visiting an in-game store and purchasing them. The boxes possess randomized rewards, meaning that you don’t know what you are buying at the time of the purchase. If the boxes are purchased and not won, the transactions can be performed with the game’s virtual currency or real money. The prizes are game-dependent, the boxes can contain armor, weapons, skins, or some other things that help players to be better in the game.

The Controversy Regarding Loot Boxes

Now that we know what Loot Boxes are, we need to cover the issue people have with them. The main thing is that by some definition they are considered a “game of chance”. If they are considered as such, they are a form of gambling. Trouble is in the outcome of the purchase. Players are buying something and, in a way – gamble, on the outcome of which reward will they get when they unlock the box. It is a lot different from sports betting for example, where you can have some predictions by experts, as https://www.promoguy.us/ gives to its users. Different boxes, with the same price, have prizes of different values. And all of that is placed in games that are available to children and young people.

Laws and Regulations of Loot Boxes

This issue is not new. Countries have already decided to regulate Loot Boxes as a form of gambling, Belgium and Netherlands being the examples of that. In others, debates are being held. To have an item in a video game that can be purchased with many different payment methods is justifying those debates. In the United Kingdom, many reports and analyses have been recommending that the Gambling Act 2005 should be amended, but the government is looking for further evidence on the subject.


Video games that kids and teenagers prefer to play are increasingly using loot boxes. The research on the top-played games on the streaming website Steam revealed that exposure to the loot box for players increased from 5.3 percent in 2010 to more than 70 percent in recent years. Companies that develop video games for kids are known for their numerous strategies to increase revenue, like microtransactions. But when it comes to loot boxes, people need to ask themselves, are the young people exposed to a construct that can develop gambling habits at a such young age?

The post Loot Boxes: Is It a Form of Gambling or Not? appeared first on iGaming.org.

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