The new policy is slated to go into effect by the end of 2020, so you should see it in action around the time the PS5 and Xbox Scarlett launch, and will require developers to inform players of the likelihood they’ll receive rare items in said boxes. This requirement will apply to loot boxes that are available at launch in games, but if developers try to add them in post-launch, the policy will also apply.
The blog post goes into detail about the publishing members that have agreed to the policy, with (deep breath) Activision Blizzard, BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment, Bethesda, Bungie, Electronic Arts, Microsoft, Nintendo, Sony Interactive Entertainment, Take-Two Interactive, Ubisoft, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and Wizards of the Coast all agreed to implement the policy by the end of 2020. The ESA also notes that several more are also considering a disclosure.
“The video game industry relies on creating and sustaining relationships with our players based on fun, but just as importantly on trust,” says the press release. “One of the hallmarks of our industry is that we don’t just create entertainment value for our players, we listen to them.”
While the disclosure of loot boxes odds isn’t the overall removal that many gamers are likely hoping for, it’s still a step in the right direction. With the other recent news that Rocket League will be removing their loot crates in the near future too, perhaps the age of loot boxes in the gaming industry is ending. Perhaps.
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