Video game(s) you're playing

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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12901  Postby tuco » May 08, 2019 3:34 pm

It's clear to me but ok no problem. Aside from what is written in the article, it's been covered on Gamasutra, and elsewhere, before but since it only concerns marketing departments, or accounting?, and Chinese gamers ... who cares?
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12902  Postby Thommo » May 08, 2019 3:43 pm

Drop chance has also been regulated, meaning the chance of obtaining a specific item can no longer remain static. Instead, a player’s chances of obtaining the desired item must increase with every loot box they open.

In short, with the new regulations, a rare item must be guaranteed to drop within no more than “X” amount of loot box opens. Developers can determine this maximum number “X” at their discretion but are required to be clear about it in the game. In a moment, I'll elaborate on how to strategically set this number for your loot boxes.


If you think you can tell me exactly what that means, that would be great.

For example, let's suppose I want to have a loot drop chance that rises asymptotically from 1% to 100%, with 99% chance after 100 boxes. Is that legal?

I don't think he's clear. There are an awful lot of functions that are monotonic but would not guarantee a drop within X boxes. In practical terms whether the law specifies an upper value for X matters quite a lot too. It also matters whether it's for each specific item in a game, or across classes of item.

But sure, purely academic interest, I'm not selling (or buying) loot boxes in China or anywhere else.
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12903  Postby tuco » May 08, 2019 3:59 pm

I cannot because I don't know and I don't care. Generally, I care about concepts, not details. Have you ever seen/bought a loot box with the description "has a chance to contain <insert item>"? I have (virtually all loot boxes I have ever seen had such description), will not do it again, and always found it ridiculous that the exact chance was not displayed. WTF is .. has a chance? With this regulation in place, the chance - whatever it might be 1/10 or 1/1 000 000 - should be indicated clearly, in my understanding. It's only fair to know the odds before placing a bet.

So if someone wants a certain item, and 1 loot box is let's say for $1, while limit is 50 boxes with a chance of 1/1 000 000 each, it does not take a genius to figure out it's not gonna happen by spending $50. Of course, kids are not geniuses, in this sense, and addicts might not have to care either way, but as we've learned from Celia Hodent, Former Fortnite UX lead, "what if I want to spend $10,000, I'm rich, and I don't care!" .. yeah, what if? We certainly don't want to infringe such freedom, right? It's important.

So make such item available for $10,000 direct purchase.
Hmm no, it would not make us as much as current monetization model does now.
Well, in China hmm yes. Sorry.

Now to something else:

A dev trained robots to generate “garbage” slot machine games—and made $50K - https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2019/03/ ... -made-50k/

No comment at all here.
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12904  Postby tuco » May 09, 2019 11:58 pm

Just to warm up my soup .. that a saying, dunno how to translate it but I like it.

---

US Senator proposes a ban on loot boxes and pay-to-win mechanics aimed at kids
'When a game is designed for kids, game developers shouldn’t be allowed to monetize addiction'


The bill itself defines loot boxes as 'Microtransactions offering randomized or partially randomized rewards to players' and Play to Win mechanics in single player games as 'manipulation of a game’s progression system – typically by building artificial difficulty or other barriers into game progression – to induce players to spend money on microtransactions to advance through content supposedly available to them at no additional cost' and covers multiplayer games as 'manipulation of the competitive balance between players of multiplayer games by allowing players who purchase microtransactions competitive advantages over other players.'


https://www.videogamer.com/news/us-sena ... ed-at-kids

---

#metoo times! :)
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12905  Postby aban57 » May 10, 2019 11:37 am

How do you justify that a game is aimed at kids exactly ?
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12906  Postby tuco » May 10, 2019 12:24 pm

Do I look like Senator Hawley? Maybe I do, right? ;)

But let me think .. 1 2 3 .. how about ESRB rating?

Though the senator has different(?) idea:

• Games targeted at those under the age of 18.
• This would be determined by subject matter, visual content, and other indicators
similar to those used to determine applicability of the Children’s Online Privacy
Protection Act (COPPA)
• Games with wider audiences whose developers knowingly allow minor players to
engage in microtransactions


From the link included in the article.

I guess, it's not because I, the senator, was not aware of ERSB but because it's voluntary. Nevertheless, with appropriate steps and adjustments to relevant legislation, is it possible to police it or not? What do you think? 1 2 3 .. go!
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12907  Postby aban57 » May 10, 2019 12:33 pm

I think it's 2 different things. ESRB classifies a game regarding its content. The more/stronger the inappropriate content for kids, the higher classification you get. However, that doesn't say anything about the audience of a game. Tetris could be (and most likely is) rated 3, but it's not aimed at 3 y/o kids. Which means under such law, Tetris couldn't have any microtransactions because it's "aimed" at kids, when it's not. Pay-to-win games are big shit and unfair, no matter the age of the players.
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12908  Postby tuco » May 10, 2019 12:40 pm

You have not given me the same courtesy I gave to you, answering my question.

Personally, I have zero problems with Tetris not being able to have loot boxes. Alternatively, we could go the Belgian way. Obviously, there is work to be done but can it be done or not? 1 2 3 .. go!
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12909  Postby aban57 » May 10, 2019 12:48 pm

tuco wrote:You have not given me the same courtesy I gave to you, answering my question.

Personally, I have zero problems with Tetris not being able to have loot boxes. Alternatively, we could go the Belgian way. Obviously, there is work to be done but can it be done or not? 1 2 3 .. go!


I partially did, subtextly. I'm in favour of forbidding pay-to-win functionalities in games, but it can't be limited to games "aimed" at kids. I'd justify it saying that the natural competitive attitude in humans make this kind of functionality potentially dangerous to people prone to addictions. And removing them altogether benefits everyone. Now i'm not a legal specialist, and can't be 100% sure that this approach is legal. But at least it makes sense and is defensible.
Of course it has flaws, there is nothing, legal or otherwise, that forces games to be fair, for example.
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12910  Postby tuco » May 10, 2019 1:16 pm

Cool.

The way I see it is that: 1. we I figure stuff out say ethically - is this something we I dis/like, 2. conceptually - impossible/possible, costs/benefits, 3. let the details work out by those qualified, responsible and paid for it. These 3 can blend but you got the idea. Personally, I stop at 2 and it's not because I am not paid for it, but if I was to figure out the details, I would be doing nothing else. I've got concepts to work out. So many ;)

Its been a couple of years (perhaps since 2014) I figured out 1 and 2, so I am glad others are joining in. #metoo

---
edit: see posts bellow
Last edited by tuco on May 10, 2019 1:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12911  Postby aban57 » May 10, 2019 1:22 pm

tuco wrote: is this something we dis/like? 2


If you go that way, then you're just stating an opinion. And you need facts. You don't do (or shouldn't, at least) laws based on what people like or dislike. You make laws on what has positive/negative impact on people. Fairness has an objectively positive impact on people. But enforcing fairness in all aspects of life isn't probably an achievable goal. Life itself is not fair anyway.
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12912  Postby tuco » May 10, 2019 1:35 pm

Of course, I am stating an opinion on loot boxes. I am not a fan of the idea that science can answer moral questions. There is no scientific answer to whether loot boxes ought to display chance of a drop or not, for example. There could be a legal answer to whether loot boxes are gambling or not but again, what gambling is and whatnot or whether loot box gambling ought to be accessible to kids and/in games or not, is a matter of opinion. What do you think #metoo is? Essentially, a call for change of cultural norms.

Either way, I don't really care if you approve or disapprove my way of doing things so .. it's noted and that is all.

---
edit: gonna edit my previous post accordingly
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12913  Postby aban57 » May 10, 2019 1:51 pm

tuco wrote:Of course, I am stating an opinion on loot boxes. I am not a fan of the idea that science can answer moral questions.
There is no scientific answer to whether loot boxes ought to display chance of a drop or not, for example.

That wasn't remotely what I said. Or thought.


tuco wrote:
There could be a legal answer to whether loot boxes are gambling or not but again, what gambling is and whatnot is or whether loot box gambling ought to be accessible to kids and/in games or not, is a matter of opinion.

What gambling is is not a matter of opinion. What we accept our kids should be exposed to is. You're mixing 2 things again.

tuco wrote:
What do you think #metoo is? Essentially, a call for change of cultural norms
Because of its negative impact on half of the population, which is measurable, and measured. That's what leads the will to change things.

tuco wrote:
Either way, I don't really care if you approve or disapprove my way of doing things so .. it's noted and that is all.

I'm not approving or disapproving anything about you, just saying that laws shouldn't change just because of people's opinion.
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12914  Postby tuco » May 10, 2019 2:06 pm

Ok, well as long as you are for this particular change of cultural norms you can write whatever and I am cool :)
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12915  Postby tuco » May 13, 2019 8:24 pm

Essential Facts About the Computer and Video Game Industry - http://www.theesa.com/about-esa/essenti ... -industry/

and while here we can also do this:

ESRB TO BEGIN ASSIGNING “IN-GAME PURCHASES” LABEL TO PHYSICAL VIDEO GAMES - https://esrbstorage.blob.core.windows.n ... -22718.pdf
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12916  Postby purplerat » May 13, 2019 9:03 pm

aban57 wrote:I think it's 2 different things. ESRB classifies a game regarding its content. The more/stronger the inappropriate content for kids, the higher classification you get. However, that doesn't say anything about the audience of a game. Tetris could be (and most likely is) rated 3, but it's not aimed at 3 y/o kids. Which means under such law, Tetris couldn't have any microtransactions because it's "aimed" at kids, when it's not. Pay-to-win games are big shit and unfair, no matter the age of the players.

I don't see a huge problem with classifying micro-transactions as a form of content which necessitate a higher rating. Say you have a game like Tetris which would normally have a low rating but then they add micro transactions and that automatically bumps it's rating up to something higher, whatever the appropriate level of is considered to be.

It would force game companies to decide what's more profitable - access to a larger market via a lighter rating or micro transactions.
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12917  Postby tuco » May 14, 2019 4:06 am

There are two issues here from where I sit. In-game purchases and loot boxes. Then there is another issue, pay-to-win mechanics, but that I do not see as an avenue to pursue at the moment. Personally, I find in-game purchases as legitimate monetization model, while loot boxes, in its current form with an unspecified chance, I consider a scam - a dishonest scheme. Whether its gambling or not is more or less pointless debate, at least here, simply because what gambling is and what not is arbitrary. Is poker gambling or skill based game, you know.
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12918  Postby tuco » May 15, 2019 7:13 pm

Sweden investigating loot boxes
Swedish Consumer Agency has been instructed to review casino-like elements of gaming mechanics; local gaming trade group welcomes the move

Sweden may not be regulating loot boxes as gambling, but that doesn't mean the mechanic will escape legal scrutiny entirely.


https://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/ ... loot-boxes
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12919  Postby tuco » May 21, 2019 8:17 am

Cool story time.

During the weekend there was the first round of Hearthstone Grandmasters (e-sports btw lol) broadcasted on this channel:

https://www.twitch.tv/playhearthstone/

got decent viewership with around 20k on average. Anyway, they ran some ads during the broadcast, like this one:

https://www.twitch.tv/videos/427309756 (starts around 0:49:50)

I dunno how it, my brain, works but when I saw this:

Image

I decided to post the following:

Selling packs to kids in 2k19 lol (pointing to bygone times this way is a common meme)*

and to my surprise I got a message saying something like:

Your message was not posted because it did not comply with moderation.

What do you mean? Either there is something wrong with selling packs to kids or not.

*note that it's not possible to buy cards (one wants) directly but only through packs (loot boxes) with "a chance"
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Re: Video game(s) you're playing

#12920  Postby Animavore » May 21, 2019 8:03 pm

Dark Souls creators and G.R.R. Martin working on a game together! :shock:

https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2019 ... ion-rumour
A most evolved electron.
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