Why a conversation around loot box regulation, responsibility, & harm needs to be happening

As the quickly all-too-common way for developers to monetize their games grows in popularity, how do we begin to think about regulating and understanding the harm that stems from this problematic form of revenue generation?


Author: Matthew Perks

Publisher: Medium

Pages: N/A


“There has been a debate about whether these loot boxes are in fact gambling ever since their first inception. While the ESRB may not consider them to be gambling, they unequivocally are and considering them not to be due to a technicality is a tone-deaf interpretation of their function and history. Loot boxes, for the most part, have their history in Gachapon (ガチャポン), an activity that is regulated in Japan due to the potential harms from this form of gambling. The main arguments that loot boxes are not gambling rely on the fact that players always receive something in return for their gamble.” – Matthew Perks, Medium

Curator: Steve Wilcox
Steve Wilcox is an assistant professor in the Game Design & Development program at Wilfrid Laurier University where he researches & creates knowledge translation games. He is also the co-founder & former editor-in-chief of First Person Scholar.

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