The Netherlands 1st at declaring lootboxes as illegal...asking developers for changes

Discussion in 'The Black Hole' started by McCormick, Apr 23, 2018.

  1. Update:
    Turned out to be the netherlands. ;p

    "Out of 10 boxes, 4 see their contents determined by chance, and because the goods in them can be sold outside the game, you'd need a gambling license"

    Thanks to notadmin for doing an exact translation. :)
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2018
  2. NotAdmin

    NotAdmin Administrator

    Psst. Not Denmark. The Netherlands ;)
    • Winner Winner x 1
  3. Wistrel

    Wistrel Kick Ass Elf

    yeh it is blatant gambling. In MA talk, there is no way that skill, leveled skill or knowledge can influence what you get in a loot box.

    While I get that they can claim otherwise for the various in game professions. These webshop items are pure hit and hope.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  4. Maybe they could link the chances of looting a loot box to in-game attributes?

    For example agility and/or strength and maybe include a new lock-picking skill in-game?

    NB by publishing this suggestion I hereby claim full copyright and will take legal action against any mmorpg owners or employees who implement this without paying me lots of dosh.
  5. narfi

    narfi Lost

    Devils advocate here......
    Isn't the tt value of each box the same?
    • Informative Informative x 1
  6. Wistrel

    Wistrel Kick Ass Elf

    Not devils advocate at all. Interesting info. So is that the value of the box before opened? or the value of the box as a container? (is it even a container?) and is it that all goods inside the box will always have an equal combined TT? Also is the TT value of the box the same as the cost of it in the web store (PED equivalent I mean)?

    Final question, is it that the items in the box "might" have a value in resale massively beyond their TT value?

    As is the always the problem with me in Entropia. I wonder around and don't "play" that much so I've no idea how half the stuff works anymore :D
  7. Wistrel, “wonder around”?

    Not sure if a typo but still a great phrase and one that I intend to copy and use irl.
  8. The box has no value. The key to open the box does.
    Boxes are tradable.
    You cannot buy Boxes from the webshop. Only Boxes in combination with keys
    You can buy keys from the webshop for 10 ped
    A key in combination with a box gives you 10 ped of it value. This value can be tt-ed or refined.
    Things to note :
    refining cost is not included
    If a pet is in the loot the total tt is not 10 peds. A pet can be recycled for 1-3 pecs.
    Sometimes a ring is in the opened box. The Markup value can be +10 ped to +20k ped (unique ring) , but the tot value remains 10 ped
    • Informative Informative x 2
  9. Wistrel

    Wistrel Kick Ass Elf

    Wander around I guess. But Wonder around would be true too especially when I find something pretty to look at :D
  10. NotAdmin

    NotAdmin Administrator

    Semantics. That is the exact same way all other lootboxes in the world work. Until you open it, you do not know what random item you got. This item can be worthless, or sold for more money than you put in.

    Random. I.e. chance. Your lottery ticket (Item in the box) is worthless, or worth actual money. I.e. gambling.
  11. narfi

    narfi Lost

    My (the Devil's Advocate) point is that MA does place a value on it. $1 in, $1 out. What you do with your $1 is up to you.
    This allows MA to legitimately make the claim that it is not gambling.
    As you said, "Semantics."
  12. NotAdmin

    NotAdmin Administrator

    But that's the same with every game company offering lootboxes, and yet there's a reason governments are starting to come after them.

    Heck, if your argument held any water, casinos could just claim to hand out a plastic chip, and thus it's not gambling. I somehow doubt that reasoning will hold up in court, if it was tried. Any judge worth their salt would then simply order the game company to have every box yield the exact same return item (I.e. for every dollar, you'd get 90 cents back). Nobody would bother with the boxes in such a case. IT's exactly because what can be returned has a greater value that people keep opening them.
  13. Wistrel

    Wistrel Kick Ass Elf

    Aren't we trying to say here that the box is guaranteed to have a TT value of 10ped which is what it cost to buy, but it MIGHT be worth more to the player base, i.e. in resale value if the contents are rare and not say, just ammo for example?

    With other games, there is no such thing as TT value, so players who buy a loot box are at the mercy of the random number generator as to if they are "worth" anything at all (of course with no RCE they can't be).

    So from MA's perspective isn't the deal that effectively I give you a tenner and you give me a tenner back, but you MIGHT give me something I can sell to someone else for 20 or even 100 occasionally.

    Of course, that tenner is now in the game rather than in your pocket and this is where MA win? Because most people don't withdraw (I imagine).


    PS note I might have completely misunderstood
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. NotAdmin

    NotAdmin Administrator

    Except that's not entirely true. Back when Diablo 2 was "hot", there was a huge market on ebay for rare items. Sure, technically speaking, they were worthless, but people happily paid real dollars to take possession of virtual items (I actually bought some back in those days, and I do believe it paved the way for me to accept spending money in EU in a way).

    From the Wikipedia page about loot boxes:

    I quoted the part about booster packs, as it sort of counters the argument made that all TT-value is equal. All cards essentially are just a piece of cardboard, too. Yet, I doubt I'd find anyone offering me to swap a Magic The Gathering Black Lotus for the Ace of Spades in the deck of cards I got in Vegas.
  15. RAZER

    RAZER Custom title ... uh ...

    I can even imagine that MA might have to explain how the loot mechanics work to the Dutch government in order to determine if the entire loot system is gambling or not. I mean you put in some money (ammo and decay) with the hope to get something in return (loot) but you have no way of knowing what that return will be.

    Interesting to see what will happen next.
    • Winner Winner x 1
  16. Swedish finanz inspektionen aka."Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority" already checked MindArks "cashflow" back in the 1st days of them announcing their MindBank. MA had to remove PEDs from loot and I think finanz inspektionen decided it is not (yet) gambling.

    But we had no boxes back in the days. Now ride your Atrox into the sunset !

    Id be more then happy if someone could upload the original investigation documents. ;p
  17. San


    Exactly. MA is not concerned with the value players associate to indivual items, the tt value is what they sell it for and is the exact same amount users have a right to redeem should they wish to cash out. It is currency for currency. Like coins, which all have the same value as currency, but a few of them happen to be rare prints which, when found, are worth much more to collectors. The state would have to prosecute itself as issuer of these coins if it found fault with that. But then, little does logic mean if someone in politics picks a target.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  18. MA choosed Interxion in April 2009.

    It says 820.000 registered accounts in 2009. Which is the exact number from my image.
    So it must be correct. ;D

    Other than that, I can only SEE a Interxion PR PDF. Ot what did I miss here @Tass ?

    I was looking for the finanzinspektion PDFs, probably hidden in some safes ;)
  19. Tass

    Tass Administrator

    The servers are located in the The Netherlands.
    • Like Like x 1
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