Monster Hunter World isn’t doing lockboxes or lootboxes either

Add Monster Hunter World to the pile of games that are standing against the exploitation of lockboxes and lootboxes. Multiple Monster Hunter devs told Gamespot this week that the game won’t have them and won’t need them. Granted, part of the reasoning is that the game itself already uses actual random in-game loot as a “core gameplay aspect,” something the Capcom team doesn’t want people to skip via microtransactions, gambling or not.

“I think the games that successfully do loot box systems are designed around them completely from the outside and they’re a core part of the gameplay loot, whereas as our loop, it’s more based on the gameplay action itself, then gathering items, then using that to create better gear, and then using that to go and do more action gameplay,” Game director Kaname Fujioka explained. “We would have to fundamentally rethink our gameplay loop. When you’re including loot boxes you have to make them desirable to players and make them want to have them by introducing them in basic gameplay. And then that leads to further opportunities for purchasing to save time or get cooler items. And with our gameplay, we can’t just put them in there and have it work. We’d have to have a substantial re-think, which is not something we’re particularly planning to do at this time.”

Earlier this week, we reported that Dauntless, a game very much built in the Monster Hunter franchise’s likeness, will also forego this particular flavor of monetization, which has come under heavy scrutiny in the last month.

Source: Gamespot. Thanks, Vexia!
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34 Comments on "Monster Hunter World isn’t doing lockboxes or lootboxes either"

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Loyheta
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Loyheta

Would be out of character for them to do it. Hell, I’d be really surprised if they had something like paid dlc.

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Vexia

I love Monster Hunter because they tend more often than not to know what fans want. I do hope a lot of people who’ve never played the games before enjoy Monster Hunter World, but the style of play is definitely not going to appeal to everyone. The writer of the Gamespot article seems to have suggested loot boxes to them as a catch up mechanic for people who can’t or don’t want to grind the hunts due to time constraints. But why? Out of all the paid catch up mechanics you can think of, why suggest loot boxes when they don’t even guarantee that you’ll catch up? I can understand the desire for this option although I don’t really expect the devs to implement it.

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Sorenthaz

I mean, this is Monster Hunter. It would ruin the game if they did lockbox crap that you could pay real money for. The Monster Hunter fanbase is a diehard one and they wouldn’t put up with that crap.

Skoryy
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Skoryy

No, this isn’t yet another free and easy PR move from devs who weren’t planning on including lootboxes to begin with. Its totes all your moral soapboxing. Really. Honest.

Richard de Leon III
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Richard de Leon III

Soapboxing or not, anything that puts lockboxes in a negative light is a big plus for gamers everywhere. With any luck more and more companies will take a stance against lockboxes. I’d rather buy the items in a shop rather than roll the dice.

Grave Knight
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Grave Knight

Isn’t it weird that “not doing something shitty” is news?

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teppic

I guess some companies are not only seeing the negative backlash from glorified gambling in games but also the very realistic potential that this will all be regulated soon anyway.

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nobleeinherjar

I’m not saying I would want this, but something like “boosters” would work better in Monster Hunter than lootboxes. Something like, “20% higher chance to get that LAST FREAKING RATHALOS PLATE SO I CAN COMPLETE MY NEW ARMOR SET, COME ON!!!”

Line
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Line

I think I would like that even less than the worst lootbox model.

Monster Hunter is a disgusting grind to begin with, fair enough, that’s what they want their game to be.

But adding the special glowing sign “skip the grind, no RPG, get your loot here for $0.99!” above the Rathalos that I just killed?
Words would be had. Bad words.

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nobleeinherjar

Oh I totally agree. It’s just the model I would see them using that wouldn’t require them to rethink their entire gameplay loop. But systems like that, to me, say, “Hey, our game isn’t worth playing. So pay more money to bypass our terrible product!”

Monster Hunter is one of the few series (in my opinion) where having that kind of grind actually works. Bypassing it defeats the entire purpose.

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MesaSage

We would, however, like to introduce you to our new concept.

swag.jpg
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Arktouros

It amuses me endlessly how closely this topic is playing out exactly like the F2P debacle a years ago.

Everyone was outraged over F2P and the kinds of heavy handed cash shop tactics that were being used in games. There were lots of youtube personalities cashing in on the outrage, lots of articles being written because the topic, and of course no shortage of “discussion” on Reddit. We had MMO developers coming out of the wood work boldly declaring that their games would never go to a F2P system and that F2P was not the business model for their game. Everyone cheered them on and claimed victory that their outrage inspired such great developer responses. That was until months/years later, one by one, those bold declarations meant little as they invariably swapped business models and made “new” decisions for their businesses.

While time will tell if these “strong convictions” have any actual merit it’s not hard to see that companies now are just trying to capitalize on people’s outrage.

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silverlock

Your missing the fundamental difference which is loot boxes are gambling and cash shops are not.

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Arktouros

You’re missing the fundamental similarity which is that we’ve repeatedly seen outrage time and time again for a variety of business practices, regardless how predatory, and each time they simply become accepted as the way things are in games years down the line.

Today’s outrage is the gambling lockboxes. Yesterdays was F2P and P2W. Before was having to always be online for always on DRM. Before that was Pre-Order Bonuses and DLC. So on and so forth.

The what doesn’t really matter because, as a collective whole, we as gamers say one thing and do another. One group of us will complain and present intelligent discourse against lockboxes being gambling and another will just silently buy them. In the end, their actions speak louder to the companies than our words.

However that’s not going to stop companies from trying to get “free press” for their game by pandering to the vocal outrage over the latest topic. We saw this was F2P/P2W and we see this again with gambling crates.

TophatKiyaki
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TophatKiyaki

You’re absolutely right about the outrage part, but the question becomes is it warranted or rational, or just people bitching because of something they don’t like, and the implications of this outrage are a bit more noteworthy than you are letting on.

Lootboxes are predatory. They have tangible negative effects on the psychology of people with addictive personalities (speaking as someone who has one), and their profitability is largely due to mental manipulation of people with said personalities who also happen to have a large amount of money to burn. In other words, to use terminology common to the industry right now, they’re a sort of whale hunting scheme.

F2P and the complaints that came with it were largely due to changes in the market and older players not liking them. In hindsight, F2P complaints were stupid, as games like PoE, Warframe and the sort have proven they can be utilized completely reasonably without severely impacting the enjoyment factor of the game. Opinions on F2P aside, few people would argue they are inherently a predatory practice. They can be, as the mobile market has proven, if done in such a way to attempt to beat the player down with excessive tedium, but they can also be done in such a way that they aren’t.

Monetized Lootboxes /can’t/ be done in a “good” way. They are inherently designed to mimic the same manipulative logic as legitimate gambling. They are predatory, and shouldn’t be allowed in games in their current state. In any other interactive medium, they would be classified as gambling.

The reason this detail is significant is that unlike with F2P, all this means that the end result for Loot Boxes is /REGULATION/. We’re already seeing it in several countries and the further publishers try to push the envelope, the harder the push back will be. F2P, Season Passes, DLC, all those things were /consumer complaints/ about things they didn’t like becoming normalized. This is the first time that the greed of publishers is pushing video gaming into potentially POLITICAL territory. In my opinion, that alone is very much a reason to push back as hard as possible. I don’t know about you, but I really don’t want it to get to a point where the American Government can comfortably slither their fingers into anything to do with design choices in the Video Game Industry, even if it is for a seemingly “noble” cause like protecting people from predatory practices.

But as things are going, that is the inevitable end result if the consumer base can’t be convinced to reject these practices.

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Arktouros

I think all the outrage has always been warranted and rational. People make very good, very intelligent points when it comes to preordering, DLCs, loot boxes, P2W, and many other issues.

However as I keep trying to point out is that warranted, rational and intelligent outrage against a topic doesn’t go very far in making deep set changes in business practices.

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Michael18

also some similarities to introduction of DLC and pre-order bonuses

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Arktouros

Haha yea I still get a chuckle when I see one person say, “PSA: Remember to never preorder games.” It’s like you lost buddy, you’re like a ghost from an bygone war.

miol
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miol

-.-

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Arktouros

I don’t disagree. I fully admit that I think businesses are only interested in selfish motivations.

When you get down to it it’s all sociology 101: understanding why people/groups within groups behave the way they do and the kinds of actions that they take.

miol
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miol

The actual cynicism isn’t about stating the obvious greed of others, but it’s the attitude that “nothing will ever change”, that bothers me most here, since history is full of proof, that indeed so much has changed for the better!

And even if gacha (and preorder for that matter) won’t be one of the greatest fights in humankind’s history, that will ever have been fought for, there’s nothing courageous about just hiding behind cynicism on those topics. On the contrary. :/

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Arktouros

I would never actually say “nothing will ever change” because a great deal of things change. We used to get full games and things changed and now we get games with large parts removed and resold to us as DLCs. We used to have business models where we all paid equally into and received equal opportunity at items and then things changed and now there’s the haves and the have nots. If anything my points repeatedly show that history has in fact not been kind and people simply accepted the inevitability that I describe.

I have never diminished or implied the struggle was unimportant, only that it was ineffective. I’m not hiding behind my cynicism. This is simply the way of things (which yes yes, I know every cynic says “I’m just a realist” but sometimes it’s true…). You have counter facts to show that it isn’t by all means go ahead, but so far history seems to be on my side of these things.

miol
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miol

I would never actually say “nothing will ever change” because a great deal of things change. … If anything my points repeatedly show that history has in fact not been kind

Of course I’ve should have added in a reply to a cynic: “nothing will ever change for the better” -.-

And if you only want to count the losses, sure enough…

But ignoring China’s, Japan’s and South Korea’s legislative efforts is a feat, just because some are trying to wiggle out in the short term, doesn’t mean their grip on them aren’t getting tighter and tighter!
Lockboxes are a mainstream media topic now and consumer right associations are helping out now too!
Also, look how successfull GOG got without DRM, because of the consumer pushback on other platforms! With even evidence that sales are higher without DRM!
There are also many successful games out now, like Witcher 3, that refuse to scam with ripped out content as DLCs, for that matter, and consumer rewarding them for that with much loyalty for the brand and studio!

You have to look at the bigger historic picture of consumer rights efforts!

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Arktouros

I look at trends of my personal experiences with gaming over the last 20 years. That’s all I can really speak from. I see positive change as well as negative but generally speaking the negative simply outweighs the positive at this point.

I don’t live in China, South Korea, or Japan and more importantly I think we can see a huge difference in attitude regarding a variety of topics when it comes to protecting citizens from country to country. I’m going to leave it there because it’s not my intention to go spiraling towards a political debate. I have yet to really see it in any kind of mainstream media but my source of news could be at fault (I check google news for various news feeds across all topics).

I think it’s important to understand the difference between outliers and trends. While it’s always good to hear that there’s success stories they don’t necessarily mark trends. Companies employing these practices already (as in released games) aren’t walking them back. Many cases they go on to be wildly successful anyways. For example on the DRM topic Diablo 3 got an immense amount of heat for it’s always online DRM via Battle.net but that didn’t stop it from going on to be one of the top 10 video games ever sold for many years (currently at #12).

So while we can applaud games like Witcher 3 and it’s practices it’s far from a common trend in games at it’s caliber. The huge amount of DLCs tacked onto Bethesda games certainly never slowed down Fallout 4 sales or Skyrim sales. The reality is customers are loyal to a good game experience and if you can deliver that then you can kinda charge however and whatever you want for it.

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Armsbend

I dont think people pre order like they used to. Gamestop used to keep them from people if they didn’t. I dont think nearly as many people shop for games retail any longer.

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Arktouros

If I’m not mistaken, it’s been a while, the idea behind being anti-preorder was to not give companies a “free win” on their games by letting them know we’re not going to just auto purchase a game without seeing reviews for a particular product. This would happen be it retail physical sales or digital sales. These days I usually see it trotted out after a major failure in a game (No Man Sky, Mass Effect Andromeda, etc) where had people waited till they saw reviews they would know what kind of game they’re getting. This is especially true for games on Steam where they may have a very polished 3-4 hour experience (past point of refunds) but terrible for the rest of the game. However since many game developers release a variety of unique preorder bonuses that tempt people into buying them (IE: I preordered Total War Warhammer 2 and got Norsca DLC for “Free”) that largely becomes irrelevant because people want the goodies more than they have conviction against preordering.

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

I can only assume these companies have retained legal counsel and have been advised that lootboxes may BE considered gambling.

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Tobasco da Gama

Considering that Monster Hunter’s main audience is in Japan (even if World is aiming at the Western market), I suspect that this has a lot to do with it.

(That ban was about a specific gacha variant and not lootboxes in general, but I imagine it’s had a chilling effect as companies are wary of getting too close to the system banned by the rule.)

camren_rooke
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camren_rooke

I can see that.

Also,

Anyone else find it amusing that the word ‘gacha’ sounds like ‘Got ya’ which is usually what is said when you trick someone?

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Tobasco da Gama

It wouldn’t surprise me, with the way Japan likes to borrow words from English, but apparently not:

“Gashapon” is a Japanese onomatopoeia composed of two sounds: “gasha” (or “gacha”) for the sound of a crank on a toy vending machine, and “pon” for the sound of the toy capsule dropping into the receptacle.

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Armsbend

Whan I first read the term gacha I thought someone was pulling my leg.

Great I got the same thing I opened 5 times…
GATCHA!!!

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Armsbend

100% chance. And the only reason for that is a known name politician has taken notice. I am going to spend the weekend finding out who that is and how I can help.