MMO Week in Review: The proposal to crack down on predatory video games

Look we hate lockboxes too, but dontcha maybe think the Senate should be focused on, uh, some other even more important things right now?


Lockboxes, lootboxes, gambleboxes: Whatever you wanna call ’em, they’ve been on a wild ride the last couple of years, elevated from something only MMORPG players complained about earlier this decade as free-to-play titles took over our genre to a monetization tactic so prevalent across the wider gaming industry such that the likes of US senators are taking notice and making it their favorite talking point.

Meanwhile, we’re gearing up for Guild Wars 2’s War Eternal, keeping an eye on Riot Games post-walkout, wondering who’s getting fired over the Elder Scrolls Online RPG adventure plagiarism mess, and spending all our time in City of Heroes like it’s 2004.

Read on to catch up with the very best of this week’s MMO news and opinions today as every Sunday in Massively Overpowered’s Week in Review!



Every week, get caught up on the MMO genre’s latest news and Massively OP’s best content in our MMO Week in Review! Want more roundups of content? Try Friday’s Betawatch for MMO testing highlights, Saturday’s Make My MMO for MMO crowdfunding updates, and Sunday’s The MOP Up, which mops up all the bits of news we didn’t cover anywhere else.
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I think lootboxes should be required to have a certain ratio of loot chances. Should be available to be awarded through regular gameplay. And all content within should be available in the game through other means. No lootbox only content!


I hate it most that game companies have pushed the envelope so much that the government is required to step in now on any level. They need to temper their greed.

Roger Melly

The trouble with this sort of legislation is that it seems like a good idea but the devil is in the details . Sometimes what seems like a good idea to politicians who are not always that internet or technology savvy don’t always work well in practice .

Having said that I would love for lockboxes to be banned .

IronSalamander8 .

I hate microtransactions and other F2P game aspects in a full priced game and especially gamble boxes. I do want some kind of regulation if the companies are going to keep making this worse and worse but I don’t know if this particular bill is the correct angle. I think Arktouros’s point about how we don’t know the full details of this bill yet is a good one. We need to have some data on the nitty-gritty of any legislation before we can decide if its a good bill or not.

Adam Russell

I dont think its too much to ask to allow parents to setup their kids account with purchases locked out. Then to prevent the kids from bypassing the lockout, have 2 step verification.


As always don’t count your chickens before they hatch.

Past proposed legislation was basically ignored the last time there was all this bluster.

But the more important factor is no one knows the actual details yet of this proposal. For example it could still be perfectly legal to sell lockboxes and p2w so long as you do proper age verification. There’s a whole host of potential issues that would go along with that and still wouldn’t really do anything about the problem. Companies have shown they will adhere to the rules exactingly such as Valve disabling opening lock boxes in Belgium and Netherlands, but in Netherlands you’re still able to buy lockbox rewards others have opened off the trade store.

Everyone always loses their minds at this stuff, but as usual it’s all about the details and not sensationalized headlines.


Agree. The lobbyists will certainly have their say. Big money always wins over political posturing.