Google Play is now requiring mobile games with loot boxes display the probability of getting items

    
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Many can agree that loot boxes are a problem to varying degrees in gaming today, but does knowing the odds of getting something you want lessen the sting or perhaps give you pause in buying up multiples? We’re about to find out in the Android mobile gaming space as Google Play has drawn a pretty clear delineation about mobile games making their loot boxes “transparent,” letting you see the chances of getting the kind of items you want before you even crack into it.

The verbiage outlined by the Google Play store is cut and dried:

“Apps offering mechanisms to receive randomized virtual items from a purchase (i.e. ‘loot boxes’) must clearly disclose the odds of receiving those items in advance of purchase.”

A number of mobile games have already begun making their loot boxes transparent ahead of this policy adjustment, such as Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes and Godzilla Defense Force. Games on other platforms like PUBG have also offered a look beneath the loot box lid, so these adjustments aren’t generally new. This would mark the first time, however, that Google Play has outright demanded the feature be included, so now we’re all going to understand just how garbage the odds of getting those rares really are.

For further reading on the tire fire that is gaming lootboxes, specifically transparent lockboxes, check the links below.

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NeoWolf

Although this doesn’t make me happy as lockboxes being banned I still lke this idea as it might give some REAL LIFE perspective to thier abysmally small chances to people who are convinced that they are going to be the lucky one lol …it MIGHT.. make them think twice.

Mewmew
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Mewmew

It definitely is helpful to see, but I’m not sure that it will do much to cut down on lockbox spending. A huge percentage of the games on Google Play already display the odds, really it’s a minority of them that didn’t. When other countries started to force them to display odds, most of them started to list the odds in the Western versions as well at that time.

So yeah, people see that they have a .2% chance to get the best stuff and still put all sorts of money into the draws.

Though with all of the games that do display their odds, you really had to wonder what the ones that didn’t want to display them had to hide. Some of them like to change the odds around on people here and there depending on what they’re doing at the time and don’t like to let the players have insight into that. There is other shady stuff going on that they’re often caught doing. I guess a few of them could still hope that people think there are better odds than they really have too.

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Ashfyn Ninegold

Gaming has become a multi-billion dollar gambling industry, undoubtedly being run by international criminal organizations through their investments in what were formerly (and still to the naked eye) legit businesses. But the agenda is very clear now, if it wasn’t before. Companies like EA have gone from making games to making gambling sims with avatars.

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Dug From The Earth

baby steps I guess.

This weeds out the very VERY small percent of buyers who may have bought just to “test the waters”. Now they can clearly see their odds and avoid it all together.

The addicts, the challenged, the kids and the whales wont be affected by this at all.

Godnaz
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Godnaz

Good move by Google. Informs and protects the buyer, preempts concerns and instills consumer confidence.

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Arktouros

This has always seemed very pointless to me.

The chances of getting something in a lootbox isn’t something you can really prove without spending an exorbitant amount of money in an attempt to prove it one way or another. If I tell you that something has a 5% chance to drop it doesn’t mean you buy 20 boxes and you’ll get it. In fact it’s not understanding that which leads people to making poor decisions like buying lock boxes in the first place. You would need to purchase a big enough sample size to really get the real percentages and that’s actually thousands of boxes.

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Doubleplusgood

Great news. I think showing the percentage will help, but it still might not be enough of a deterrent.
They should also include an estimated amount of money you will have to spend to get that rare item. People understand dollars more than a percentage. If we could see that it could cost hundreds of dollars to get an item that would even be more transparent about the costs. And hopefully discourage purchases.

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h4

Too true. So many suckers think they will be the lucky exception despite seeing a 1% chance.

Dantos
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Dantos

Baseline of what I would like to see, but I want universal adoption. It will also be interesting to see how it eats into profits. Investors could start fleeing the sector.

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Fisty

Good news. Totally reasonable.

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Darthbawl

Good step in the right direction. Can’t wait for Jim Sterling to pounce on this, if he has not already done so.

Now to move on to the rest of the industry with these kind of policies!

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Mark Jacobs

Works for me. It’s a good first step but it’s not enough.