Loot Boxes are getting common in the video game as more and more companies want to increase their revenue by adding a pay-to-win model or some introduction to loot boxes where players can pay and unlock items. Does this sound like gambling? Well, it seems a fair way of introducing micro-transactions in the game however a Research brings an entirely different perspective where it claims Loot Boxes are capable enough to provoke gambling behavior.
According to research by the Royal Society, loot boxes are in-game items that can be traded with real-world money. It can feature randomized content, and many games are usually played by adolescents. There are similarities between loot boxes and gambling that lead to concern in the development of the problem of gaming in adolescents. There already different research which had shown links between the both in an adult population.
Qualitative analysis of text data showed that gamers bought loot boxes for a variety of reasons. Several of these motivations were similar to common reasons for engaging in gambling. Overall, these results suggest that loot boxes either cause problem gambling among older adolescents, allow game companies to profit from adolescents with gambling problems for massive monetary rewards, or both of the above.
To explain the connection the research carries an example of loot box in Counter-Strike Global Offensive, where a player can pay $2.49 to unlock a weapon case, there are chances such cases might contain an extremely rare or valuable skin that can be re-sold to the secondary market for many thousands of dollars. Similar to this player of FIFA 19 pay real-world money to buy players-pack that contains new faces in the team, some of these packs can have rare and valuable players. They might have an impact or on the team performance or not, but those players who are unaware of what the pack really contains will pay real-world money to find out. A simple case of the motivation behind making a purchase.
Supporting the claim, in another paragraph in the research Drummond & Sauer’s systematic analysis concluded the presence of loot boxes video in video-games might be forming a ‘ripe breeding ground’ for the development of problem gambling among children. To know more click the source link below.