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UK Officials Say Loot Boxes Are Gambling


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@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said:

@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said:Haha same argument I've seen over and over "research shows" it's all bs, sorry, I should know I'm a psychologist.

Are you, then? If so, surely you can tell us what the issues with gambling are from a psychologist's perspective. And surely you wouldn't mind citing some of that research, since as a psychologist familiar with it you know just the articles you are referring to.

Not my job to educate you. Thanks. If you guys dont enjoy rng why play a rpg? Or play videogames at all, seems to me it's much too risky an activity for you and you dont seem to enjoy it anyways.

Please answer a simple question dear psychologist and I will consider myself educated if you do. It requires minimal effort on your part as a simple yes or no will suffice. I will even simplify it as much as I can.

So let's assume a parent completely fails to monitor their kid properly, should that kid be
legally
able to buy alcohol from a store or gamble in a casino? Just your opinion on this.

Here answer my question first, what is the difference between a lootbox and a breakfast cereal box with a random prize. If you can explain that I'd love to hear it and I'd love to hear why nobody is focusing on cereal at all.

It is generally considered bad manners to answer a question with a question. It also shows one is very keen on avoiding an answer. It's just a simple yes or no, why the struggle? You 've been very candid with your stance so far, no reason to stop now.

Nope not gonna answer till you answer mine, so far you've ignored every inquiry I've made to you.

Would you like a vial of salt because you want to believe lootboxes are gud?

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@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said:

@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said:thats because lootboxes are so benign and are like so many other things already in the game, that when you analyze the logic of lootboxes in gw2 it makes you extremely hypocritical to be not ok with lootboxes but to be ok with just about every other element of gw2 that contains RNG.

So it has nothing to do with me being the decider its common sense.Problem is, here you apparently appoint yourself to be a sole arbiter of what common sense is and isn't. For me, for example, it's common sense that lootboxes and RNG drops from mobs are
not
the same thing (for one, in the second case the real money is not involved).

So, you see no problem with you, yourself, deciding, but at the same time you do not think anyone besides you can do that.

If there's any hypocrisy here, it's not on my side, that's for sure.

but you can get keys, from mobs or story events, and by farming anything in the game for gold then converting it to gems and buying keys with essentially playtime..And if that was the only way to get keys, then probably governments would not become involved. Although then most likely the whole lootbox mechanic would look different, as it is something designed for paying players, not for those that obtain them in any other way.

The contents of the chests cannot be converted into $, which means its a one way transaction with 0 promise ever of an equal or higher return. No matter what you get from it, the return is always $0 which makes this entertainment, just like every other activity in this game.Things not being able to be legally converted into USD doesn not mean those things do not have value. Absence of official conversion doesn't mean you can't sell things either. Goldsellers
do
sell some of those things, for very real cash, for example. There are also people selling whole accounts out there, you know.

HOW can you not SEE this logic!!I might ask the same question.

Although, the more and more i listen to you, the more i feel your claims the lootbox gambling has been completely safe for you and you are in full control here are just that, claims. I've had a friend that was a heavy smoker. He also was in full control of his addiction, could stop at any time, and besides smoking was completely safe, no reason to panic or try to impose any restrictions - it was his decision after all, noone else. He sounded very much like you do.Later on, he tried to quit smoking several times. He never quite managed that, though.

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@Cristalyan.5728 said:

but you can get keys, from mobs or story events, and by farming anything in the game for gold then converting it to gems and buying keys with essentially playtime..The contents of the chests cannot be converted into $, which means its a one way transaction with 0 promise ever of an equal or higher return. No matter what you get from it, the return is always $0 which makes this entertainment, just like every other activity in this game.

HOW can you not SEE this logic!!

im clearly wasting my time with this.

The difference here is that you can obtain your RNG loot from playing. With the lootboxes you obtain a RNG result by paying RL money. The regulation is about this kind of lootboxes. If ANet eliminates the BLKeys from Gem Store and keeps them only as drops in the game, then your logic is OK. But, again, the regulation is about the RNG content of something you buy with
real money.

Another detail: Regulation does not mean prohibition. If a regulation anti lootboxes will be adopted, then the Game Companies will have two possible way to continue:
  • To eliminate the RNG element from the boxes - with other words you see what you buy, OR
  • Raise the PEGI of the game and advertise the game as a something containing gambling elements. And (probably) to pay taxes as any gambling company.

Fact of the matter is, If you dislike lootboxes then you dislike the mystic forge, mount licences, rng drops from mobs, dye packs, magic find boosters, ecto gamble. All of these activities can be enhanced or done with real life money. Technically anything with variance you should be against, otherwise it's hypocritical. They are all variations on the exact same thing.

Even more so because black lion chests give no stat advantages, (so its not pay2win) have no monetary value, are entirely optional, and you get them from story and mob drops. In addition, all sources of gold in game can be converted into gems for keys, which means you're literally converting playtime (killing mobs and doing events for rng drops) into gems. And yes, of course, cash to gems for keys.

When you add all of this up, your argument is quite ridiculous.

I don't think the regulation will try to change the RNG in game. Only the RNG on items you buy with real money. What you say about going into a Store and asking for a bottle of wine? The vendor takes your money and then throw some dices. And he says - well, you won this time a complete set of shawing blades+the foam as a bonus. You can try again if you want your wine. Hm?

We all know that the BLChests are entirely optional and most of us can control the impulse to buy more than you can afford. But what about children? Without a strong self-control? They can be very easy manipulated. I don't take here into consideration the adults with self-control issues. But the children. Is the protection of the children a religious issue? Then, US and all the European countries are religious dictatures. Because all cares about children.

The mount licence box where you can receive a random one by trying your luck has been debated and even ANet indirectly admitted the mistake by announcing that the following releases of mount licences will not follow the same model. On the other hand ONE licence for a certain mount is not RNG, so it is not gambling.All the other details excepting the loot boxes (and the first release of mounts adoption box) if you don't want to pay RL money are accessible with gold
only
. So, this is an ingame RNG element and I don't think it will be subject of (immediate) regulation.You cannot directly buy Ectos with RL money. Yes, you can buy gems. But with gems you buy gold - and this is the point where nobody will go further. You knew what you bought. Gold. What you will do with the gold ingame is not subject of regulation.

Do you have any personal involvement into gaming industry? Because you react to the regulation idea as to a direct and personal attack.

To be fair it's not as clear cut as that. Gold to gems makes it so that all rng can be considered problematic.You are working under the assumption that the legislation won't act on thing bought with gold. And even if I grant you that. If the law doesn't take that into account all buyable rng thing with gold would be illegal.

And if you're law makes exceptions their could be a loophole in regards of which currency is just to buy the lootbox.

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I read a number of stupid posts in here, this is very simple.

I pay real money in a game of chance hoping to win the jackpot, gambling, I am gambling my money to win the jackpot in the lootbox.

I play the game and play challenges to earn rewards, I'm not gambling anything there is no risk to me whatsoever, I'm doing X task to earn X reward.

Arguing that defeating a challenge in game to earn rewards is the same as a real money gambling roulette system, really is complete nonsense lol.

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And the relevant source : https://massivelyop.com/2019/08/05/uk-researcher-stomps-the-lockboxes-are-kinder-eggs-defense-into-paste/

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors.As someone who's been thinking about the Kinder Egg thing a lot, I was curious about that article, but I must say it was very dissapointing. It didn't really gave me any decent answers. It says the difference is in KE not getting your data and not using them against you (hey, isn't that similat to what (not only) Google does? Collecting your data and behavior and using the info for making you spend money by showing you related ads...), which is true, but not collecting the data certainly does NOT automatically make KE harmless regarding getting a gambling habit. I'm saying that, because "let's protect kids from becoming gamblers" is mentioned often in this whole case. And while the data misuse is an ugly heap of kitten, it's not creating a gambling addiction, it's abusing it, which is bad, but IMO it's not the cause but a consequence.

So, if the main problem is in using algorithms to rip people off, we should be "punishing" using the algorithms and not lootboxes per se. And if the main problem is creating gambling habits, them those algorithms, as bad as they are, are not a relevant argument at all and the whole linked article is pretty much useless. It's like saying "Someone said, that strawberries are fruit, just as bananas. But strawberries are nothing like bananas, because they're not yellow and long."

What I'd like to get is a study proving whether or not KE are harmless in introducing kids into gambling. Where adults see just a worthless piece of plastic, kids might see an item of great value and take it all far more seriously. Honestly, is there even a real difference of objective value between a piece of pretty plastic that can be played with and a moving picture that can be played with?

Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items.Isn't this actually making it worse, rather than better?

It is difficult to spend thousands of dollars on Kinder Eggs.Is the "how much" really that important? Many times I read, that the thrill of maybe getting what you want is what"s important and risky and that doesn't have to be dependant on amount spent.

The transaction, user experience, and consequences are quite different.”Can't really argue on that one as I'm not an expert, but I guess that works more on individual basis. For me personally the BLC are pretty much the same as a KE in all ways I'm able to measure. I don't have any experience with lootboxes in other games.

I also can't agree that wider range of possible rewards (a car x a piece of string) is that much important, I think "desirable/popular/hyped vs not desirable" is much more what it's about. And you have that with KE, just as with lootboxes.

Well, I hope this still makes some sense after I rewrote it for about million times and with my English proving to be not all that good...

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@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said:

Crossing the street is risky and contains elements of rng, it's also addictive in that people have a desire to get to the other side, repeatedly. Through mental conditioning people are lulled into a false sense of security for an activity that can be dangerous. Crossing the street has clearly become compulsive as people feel compelled to reach the other side and yet they engage in risky street crossing behavior despite the scientifically proven detrimental outcomes of this activity. Pretty much the same statement and argument you said.

Nuclear submarines move in seawater.I can move in seawater.Therefore I am a nuclear submarine.

I suggest you read a bit on logical fallacies and how to avoid them for a proper debate. It would surely help to construct a proper argument instead of whatever this is.

They constantly use a classic straw man argument. In my opinion, it is useless to appeal to logic in this case.Unfortunately, the very same tactic is used by lobbyists to prevent better regulation. I suspect that the game industry will use exactly the same strategy as Big Tobacco to keep the existing status quo for as long as possible.

So how does that work, rng gambling from killing mobs is ok because you say so. But buying keys which also drop from mobs to open a chest that has random loot is not ok. Lol and you're the sole decider of morality and where the line is drawn?

Stop bringing up this nonsense strawman.

The mob you kill does not change depending on your player behavior. It does not get altered to fit certain molds and exploit certain patterns. If you could pay to get the mob loot and then pay for 10,000 mob loot at once, then it would be comaprable. Killing a mob requires actual interaction with the game (which is limited by time automatically). Spending money from your bank account to interact with game elements which were specifically designed to encourage you to spend money on them is a near instant process which can get expanded upon significantly (both due to limited use of time as well as built in scalability).

Also this has been pointed out multiple times by now, GW2 lootboxes and mechanics are among the most industry harmless. This legislation is not made due to Arenanet or GW2. The main driving reasons are way more predatory publishers and mechanics.

@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said:Lol and you're the sole decider of morality and where the line is drawn?

Right now, you are basically the person who is going: alcohol should not be restriced to any one. People who misuse it or have no control over themselves are at their own fault. Alcohol addiction is of no consequence and minors, who have no concept of what alcohol is, need no protection of it.

That's literally you on this issue if your arguments were transfered to regulation of liquor.

Tha fact that UK MPs specifically mentioned that the gaming industry was basically dodging a proper inquery should have all types of red flags pop up as consumer.

To actually address your issue with rng from mobs though: yes, that too is an issue, but this one falls in the sphere of gaming addiction. Something which also is seeing more and more research in the last few years.

Gaming addiction? All games are addictive and yet there are 0 warnings or regulations on hours played or the fact that they can be addictive, especially with mmos. Lol it's like you guys just pick and choose what to be offended by with 0 logic.

Two wrongs do not make a right.

The fact that legislation is lacking in one area does not justify it's lack in another area. I already pointed out that there is research being done into gaming addiction. The WHO has even officially defined gaming disorder:

So again, you are strawmaning.

That's how precedence works. And I dont need any warnings that are that obvious like driving is dangerous eating food could be risky. It's like you guys want hand holding for every aspect of life because were all too naive to take responsibility for anything and we need rules and regulations of everything, in order to know how to do the most basic functions of life.

By your logic, things like alcohol, physical gambling, drugs should be eligible for minors too. The dangers from these are obvious too. Those regulations are "hand-holding" too.

Can you please go on record on your opinion on this? I'm really interested in seeing it.

Sorry gambling on pixels isnt on par with alchohol guns or drugs lol, not even close. Its about on par with say going to disneyland paying admission to go in, and then going into one of the stores, seeing something you like and then, crying murder because they overcharge for their products or its "predatory because they prey on children's expectations or desires" yet no laws for that nor is there a need its just capitalism. Maybe parents should learn to say no.

Research into how the brain is affected suggests otherwise. You are willfully misinformed. You either lack even basic understanding of how drugs and our brain works, or you are willfully misrepesenting these issues. No one is denying that there is difference of severity in addiction. But to put addiction off as ONLY being produced by XYZ is ludicrously idiotic.

Haha same argument I've seen over and over "research shows" it's all bs, sorry, I should know I'm a psychologist. You can make data and statistics prove anything. Parents need to watch their kids, I'm 100% convinced this is a religious moral argument about gambling and vice rather then based on sound logic.

Yes, I'm sure you are. Just like I'm a NASA astraunaut.

I actually am but whatever lol. You're just bent on passing religious morals onto everyone like censor everyting, free expression, art, entertainment because it doesnt fit your narrative and then (insert bogus statistic or study) and (use the children card).

The only one trying to pass off their "religious" morals here is you.

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@yann.1946 said:

but you can get keys, from mobs or story events, and by farming anything in the game for gold then converting it to gems and buying keys with essentially playtime..The contents of the chests cannot be converted into $, which means its a one way transaction with 0 promise ever of an equal or higher return. No matter what you get from it, the return is always $0 which makes this entertainment, just like every other activity in this game.

HOW can you not SEE this logic!!

im clearly wasting my time with this.

The difference here is that you can obtain your RNG loot from playing. With the lootboxes you obtain a RNG result by paying RL money. The regulation is about this kind of lootboxes. If ANet eliminates the BLKeys from Gem Store and keeps them only as drops in the game, then your logic is OK. But, again, the regulation is about the RNG content of something you buy with
real money.

Another detail: Regulation does not mean prohibition. If a regulation anti lootboxes will be adopted, then the Game Companies will have two possible way to continue:
  • To eliminate the RNG element from the boxes - with other words you see what you buy, OR
  • Raise the PEGI of the game and advertise the game as a something containing gambling elements. And (probably) to pay taxes as any gambling company.

Fact of the matter is, If you dislike lootboxes then you dislike the mystic forge, mount licences, rng drops from mobs, dye packs, magic find boosters, ecto gamble. All of these activities can be enhanced or done with real life money. Technically anything with variance you should be against, otherwise it's hypocritical. They are all variations on the exact same thing.

Even more so because black lion chests give no stat advantages, (so its not pay2win) have no monetary value, are entirely optional, and you get them from story and mob drops. In addition, all sources of gold in game can be converted into gems for keys, which means you're literally converting playtime (killing mobs and doing events for rng drops) into gems. And yes, of course, cash to gems for keys.

When you add all of this up, your argument is quite ridiculous.

I don't think the regulation will try to change the RNG in game. Only the RNG on items you buy with real money. What you say about going into a Store and asking for a bottle of wine? The vendor takes your money and then throw some dices. And he says - well, you won this time a complete set of shawing blades+the foam as a bonus. You can try again if you want your wine. Hm?

We all know that the BLChests are entirely optional and most of us can control the impulse to buy more than you can afford. But what about children? Without a strong self-control? They can be very easy manipulated. I don't take here into consideration the adults with self-control issues. But the children. Is the protection of the children a religious issue? Then, US and all the European countries are religious dictatures. Because all cares about children.

The mount licence box where you can receive a random one by trying your luck has been debated and even ANet indirectly admitted the mistake by announcing that the following releases of mount licences will not follow the same model. On the other hand ONE licence for a certain mount is not RNG, so it is not gambling.All the other details excepting the loot boxes (and the first release of mounts adoption box) if you don't want to pay RL money are accessible with gold
only
. So, this is an ingame RNG element and I don't think it will be subject of (immediate) regulation.You cannot directly buy Ectos with RL money. Yes, you can buy gems. But with gems you buy gold - and this is the point where nobody will go further. You knew what you bought. Gold. What you will do with the gold ingame is not subject of regulation.

Do you have any personal involvement into gaming industry? Because you react to the regulation idea as to a direct and personal attack.

To be fair it's not as clear cut as that. Gold to gems makes it so that all rng can be considered problematic.You are working under the assumption that the legislation won't act on thing bought with gold. And even if I grant you that. If the law doesn't take that into account all buyable rng thing with gold would be illegal.

And if you're law makes exceptions their could be a loophole in regards of which currency is just to buy the lootbox.

It's not an assumption, we have existing cases. The exchange still functions in Belgium. Or more accurately, Anet didn't lock it like they did with their store-bought rng offerings. Same for any other studio with similar systems. And I seriously doubt they did so without consulting their legal departments, which should be pretty telling.

@"Erasculio.2914" said:Yeah, this discussion sounds a bit pointless now.

We all know that it's only a matter of time until loot boxes get regulated by governments worldwide (no matter how many times someone throws a tantrum about it).

The question is, how will they be regulated? And how will ArenaNet deal with it? Will they just remove the loot box mechanics from the game, like they did in Belgium? Will they change something else in the game, such as saying it's for a "18 years or older" audience? Or something in between?

Honestly I don't know if it's a matter of time and I'm a bit pessimistic about it. There is a lot of money in this thing. Especially in the case of UK, lobbying is out in full force. It's a critical juncture because, unlike Belgium or Netherlands, UK is the biggest European market in video gaming. They will throw everything they have to keep status quo in this one. Lobbying can't be as powerful as in the US (with the industry being largely US based), but still powerful.

As for the possible regulation, I'm seeing what the committee suggests. A 18+ age rating, a gambling label and relevant licence. And I'm seeing Anet (and everyone else) doing the same thing and locking lootbox-like store items for UK users. They can't admit to the gambling thing at this point, it would shatter their legal defense in every other country. But loosing the UK market might force them to reconsider their monetization strategy. All that assuming this goes through and I wouldn't bet on it (pun intended).

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@anninke.7469 said:

And the relevant source :

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors.As someone who's been thinking about the Kinder Egg thing a lot, I was curious about that article, but I must say it was very dissapointing. It didn't really gave me any decent answers. It says the difference is in KE not getting your data and not using them against you
(hey, isn't that similat to what (not only) Google does? Collecting your data and behavior and using the info for making you spend money by showing you related ads...)
, which is true, but not collecting the data certainly does NOT automatically make KE harmless regarding getting a gambling habit. I'm saying that, because "let's protect kids from becoming gamblers" is mentioned often in this whole case. And while the data misuse is an ugly heap of kitten, it's not creating a gambling addiction, it's abusing it, which is bad, but IMO it's not the cause but a consequence.

The entire Kinder Surprise Egg argument is only brought to establish that KSE are not in anyway as manipulated and controlled a product as lootboxes. It does not in any way delve into any of the mechanics which are being used to further customers behavior in spending more money. There is no artificial scarcity with KSE for example (which is a very wide used method to promote sales of goods in multiple industries). There is also no gratification or "winning" when buying and opening KSE for example, unlike many games and products in the digital market (often refered to pay-to-win mechanics).

@anninke.7469 said:So, if the main problem is in using algorithms to rip people off, we should be "punishing" using the algorithms and not lootboxes per se. And if the main problem is creating gambling habits, them those algorithms, as bad as they are, are not a relevant argument at all and the whole linked article is pretty much useless. It's like saying "Someone said, that strawberries are fruit, just as bananas. But strawberries are nothing like bananas, because they're not yellow and long."

The algorithms used are not sole responsible for gambling habbits. They simply increase the possibility as well as exposure. You can't simply ommit something because it's not part of the final chain if it is this strong of a catalyst.

This is even more of an issue when used on minors who have no concept of what they are being exposed to. For example: our brains react very strong to moving objects and flashing lights. Why? Because those thigns draw attention and our primitiv brain assumes it can either learn something or needs to react to something. That's why Casinos use flashy lights and lots of distracting effects. It literally bombards your brain with information exhausting it and making it potentially more susceptible to influence.

Your strawberry and banana comparison falls flat, unless there is a correlation between strawberries causeing people to eat more bananas and bananas being unhealthy.

@anninke.7469 said:What I'd like to get is a study proving whether or not KE are harmless in introducing kids into gambling. Where adults see just a worthless piece of plastic, kids might see an item of great value and take it all far more seriously. Honestly, is there even a real difference of objective value between a piece of pretty plastic that can be played with and a moving picture that can be played with?

This, while interesting and certainly already researched in papers which deal with reward behavior in our brains, is insignificant for the actual debate and nothing but a strawman. The issue if KSE are harmful or not is not of significance to the lootbox issue if there is established research that lootboxes and exploitative mechanics ARE harmful.

@anninke.7469 said:

Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items.Isn't this actually making it worse, rather than better?

Depends on a view point. Having an actual material object means it is less removed in value and understanding for an individual. Digital goods and services are subject to abstraction. This can be dervied from financial abstraction which basically means: you do not perceive something to be real, as such it can have whatever value you believe it might have. There is a nice Tedx presentation on this from Adam Carroll on the subject of how his kids behaved differently when playing for real money in monopoly:

Suffice to say, the research into behavior with more and more goods and services and currencies being financially abstract is at the heart of some of the behavior sciences currently.

@anninke.7469 said:

It is difficult to spend thousands of dollars on Kinder Eggs.Is the "how much" really that important? Many times I read, that the thrill of maybe getting what you want is what"s important and risky and that doesn't have to be dependant on amount spent.

When dealing with issues of addiction and effects on the brain, how much will very often be a very central question which needs answering. Most of the times, quantity will be a significant determening factor.

@anninke.7469 said:

The transaction, user experience, and consequences are quite different.”Can't really argue on that one as I'm not an expert, but I guess that works more on individual basis. For me personally the BLC are pretty much the same as a KE in all ways I'm able to measure. I don't have any experience with lootboxes in other games.

I also can't agree that wider range of possible rewards (a car x a piece of string) is that much important, I think "desirable/popular/hyped vs not desirable" is much more what it's about. And you have that with KE, just as with lootboxes.

Well, I hope this still makes some sense after I rewrote it for about million times and with my English proving to be not all that good...

Go read up on fincial abstraction. Value and possible reward are central motivators behind gambling. There is a reason why the amount of people playing lotteries increases dramatically when the jackpot has grown in size for example.

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@Cyninja.2954 said:

And the relevant source :

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors.As someone who's been thinking about the Kinder Egg thing a lot, I was curious about that article, but I must say it was very dissapointing. It didn't really gave me any decent answers. It says the difference is in KE not getting your data and not using them against you
(hey, isn't that similat to what (not only) Google does? Collecting your data and behavior and using the info for making you spend money by showing you related ads...)
, which is true, but not collecting the data certainly does NOT automatically make KE harmless regarding getting a gambling habit. I'm saying that, because "let's protect kids from becoming gamblers" is mentioned often in this whole case. And while the data misuse is an ugly heap of kitten, it's not creating a gambling addiction, it's abusing it, which is bad, but IMO it's not the cause but a consequence.

The entire Kinder Surprise Egg argument is only brought to establish that KSE are not in anyway as manipulated and controlled a product as lootboxes. It does not in any way delve into any of the mechanics which are being used to further customers behavior in spending more money. There is no artificial scarcity with KSE for example (which is a very wide used method to promote sales of goods in multiple industries). There is also no gratification or "winning" when buying and opening KSE for example, unlike many games and products in the digital market (often refered to pay-to-win mechanics).

@anninke.7469 said:So, if the main problem is in using algorithms to rip people off, we should be "punishing"
using the algorithms
and not lootboxes per se. And if the main problem is creating gambling habits, them those algorithms, as bad as they are, are not a relevant argument at all and the whole linked article is pretty much useless. It's like saying "Someone said, that strawberries are fruit, just as bananas. But strawberries are nothing like bananas, because they're not yellow and long."

The algorithms used are not sole responsible for gambling habbits. They simply increase the possibility as well as exposure. You can't simply ommit something because it's not part of the final chain if it is this strong of a catalyst.

This is even more of an issue when used on minors who have no concept of what they are being exposed to. For example: our brains react very strong to moving objects and flashing lights. Why? Because those thigns draw attention and our primitiv brain assumes it can either learn something or needs to react to something. That's why Casinos use flashy lights and lots of distracting effects. It literally bombards your brain with information exhausting it and making it potentially more susceptible to influence.

Your strawberry and banana comparison falls flat, unless there is a correlation between strawberries causeing people to eat more bananas and bananas being unhealthy.

@anninke.7469 said:What I'd like to get is a study proving whether or not KE are harmless in introducing kids into gambling. Where adults see just a worthless piece of plastic, kids might see an item of great value and take it all far more seriously. Honestly, is there even a real difference of objective value between a piece of pretty plastic that can be played with and a moving picture that can be played with?

This, while interesting and certainly already researched in papers which deal with reward behavior in our brains, is insignificant for the actual debate and nothing but a strawman. The issue if KSE are harmful or not is not of significance to the lootbox issue if there is established research that lootboxes and exploitative mechanics ARE harmful.

Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items.Isn't this actually making it worse, rather than better?

Depends on a view point. Having an actual material object means it is less removed in value and understanding for an individual. Digital goods and services are subject to abstraction. This can be dervied from financial abstraction which basically means: you do not perceive something to be real, as such it can have whatever value you believe it might have. There is a nice Tedx presentation on this from Adam Carroll on the subject of how his kids behaved differently when playing for real money in monopoly:

Suffice to say, the research into behavior with more and more goods and services and currencies being financially abstract is at the heart of some of the behavior sciences currently.

It is difficult to spend thousands of dollars on Kinder Eggs.Is the "how much" really that important? Many times I read, that the thrill of maybe getting what you want is what"s important and risky and that doesn't have to be dependant on amount spent.

When dealing with issues of addiction and effects on the brain, how much will very often be a very central question which needs answering. Most of the times, quantity will be a significant determening factor.

The transaction, user experience, and consequences are quite different.”Can't really argue on that one as I'm not an expert, but I guess that works more on individual basis. For me personally the BLC are pretty much the same as a KE in all ways I'm able to measure. I don't have any experience with lootboxes in other games.

I also can't agree that wider range of possible rewards (a car x a piece of string) is that much important, I think "desirable/popular/hyped vs not desirable" is much more what it's about. And you have that with KE, just as with lootboxes.

Well, I hope this still makes some sense after I rewrote it for about million times and with my English proving to be not all that good...

Go read up on fincial abstraction. Value and possible reward are central motivators behind gambling. There is a reason why the amount of people playing lotteries increases dramatically when the jackpot has grown in size for example.

But this is a subjective value. People are not more likely to gamble because the reward is bigger. They gamble because the perceived reward is bigger. This may seem pedantic but is an important distinction. For example if you really love burnt food. your goal is to collect as much burned food possible/ Then you might not be tempted to buy a lottery for a new car while you might be teùmmpted with burned food as a price.

EDIT: Could you link me a paper which says that lootboxes increase the change of a gamblingaddiction? i can mostly find papers who say that the amount of problematic gambling has increased in the last decenia. But nothing about if that is linked with lootboxes perse.

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EDIT: Could you link me a paper which says that lootboxes increase the change of a gamblingaddiction? i can mostly find papers who say that the amount of problematic gambling has increased in the last decenia. But nothing about if that is linked with lootboxes perse.

Currently at the office, so I wasn't able to do a deep dive. But I found the following article:

Video game loot boxes are linked to problem gambling: Results of a large-scale surveyhttps://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0206767

"The results of this study suggest that there is an important relationship between problem gambling and the use of loot boxes. The more severe that participants’ problem gambling was, the more money they spent on loot boxes."

I couldn't find any articles with a clear causal relationship between loot boxes > increased change of gambling addicition (while being at the office), but... isn't the chance of increasing problematic gambling reason enough to look closer at loot boxes?

As always, I'm sure more research needs to be done :#

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@"anninke.7469" said:

And the relevant source :

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors.As someone who's been thinking about the Kinder Egg thing a lot, I was curious about that article, but I must say it was very dissapointing. It didn't really gave me any decent answers. It says the difference is in KE not getting your data and not using them against you
(hey, isn't that similat to what (not only) Google does? Collecting your data and behavior and using the info for making you spend money by showing you related ads...)
, which is true, but not collecting the data certainly does NOT automatically make KE harmless regarding getting a gambling habit. I'm saying that, because "let's protect kids from becoming gamblers" is mentioned often in this whole case. And while the data misuse is an ugly heap of kitten, it's not creating a gambling addiction, it's abusing it, which is bad, but IMO it's not the cause but a consequence.

So, if the main problem is in using algorithms to rip people off, we should be "punishing"
using the algorithms
and not lootboxes per se. And if the main problem is creating gambling habits, them those algorithms, as bad as they are, are not a relevant argument at all and the whole linked article is pretty much useless. It's like saying "Someone said, that strawberries are fruit, just as bananas. But strawberries are nothing like bananas, because they're not yellow and long."

Cy already addressed most of your points so I'll just add my two cents.

Regarding data collection and algorithms and their role in the discussion, I'm guessing you are not familiar with the Activision patent. It's easy to look it up and reading it highlights how user collected data and algorithms were to be used to manipulate gameplay in order to "encourage" more spending. Not only creating addiction through psychological conditioning but also reinforcing it. The whole thing is borderline creepy and the fact that it was filed is the scariest part. And it was filed years ago so who's to say similar systems aren't already in place? Telemetry is already a thing, creating those algorithms isn't a far stretch from that. Should I take the good word of benevolent corporations as gospel and believe that they aren't? When they were obviously considered? Sorry but I'm not inclined to believe a wolf telling me they are vegan.

@"anninke.7469" said:Honestly, is there even a real difference of objective value between a piece of pretty plastic that can be played with and a moving picture that can be played with?

Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items.Isn't this actually making it worse, rather than better?

Yes there is and no it's not worse. An old Charizard card can be sold for a small fortune. That's not the story with digital goods from lootboxes. The purpose of lootboxes is to artificially inflate the price of certain items, in a way that wouldn't be possible if they were sold normally. It has been proven that the majority of people who buy lootboxes usually do so with the intention of "rolling" for 1-2 items from the pool. The earnings from lootboxes are nowhere near the earnings they would make from selling those 1-2 items normally.

Here's the thing though, unlike that Charizard card that can net you a good buck, lootbox goods are just digital data. Data that seizes to exist when the servers shut down tomorrow. So essentially you paid an already inflated price for a "good" that sooner or later turns to thin air. A very different pattern from physical collectibles which often rise in value with age. There is a word on the street for the lootbox pattern. It's called a scam.

@"anninke.7469" said:

Is the "how much" really that important? Many times I read, that the thrill of maybe getting what you want is what"s important and risky and that doesn't have to be dependant on amount spent.

It's extremely important. Do you think anyone would bat an eye over physical gambling if there was no money attached and was just a time waster? It's the potential of destroying homes financially that warrants the regulation/intervention. A need to gamble with increasing amounts of money is one of the criteria for diagnosing the disorder. It's safe to assume that the severity of the disorder is different between a gambler who spends 1$ every time and one who started with 1$ and ended up spending thousands.. And the "need to recoup", another criteria for the disorder, rises with more money spent. In our case the ever increasing need to buy "just one more to get that rare" fits the bill. "I've already spent so much, what's one more? I should be getting the rare anytime now."

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@yann.1946 said:

And the relevant source :

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors.As someone who's been thinking about the Kinder Egg thing a lot, I was curious about that article, but I must say it was very dissapointing. It didn't really gave me any decent answers. It says the difference is in KE not getting your data and not using them against you
(hey, isn't that similat to what (not only) Google does? Collecting your data and behavior and using the info for making you spend money by showing you related ads...)
, which is true, but not collecting the data certainly does NOT automatically make KE harmless regarding getting a gambling habit. I'm saying that, because "let's protect kids from becoming gamblers" is mentioned often in this whole case. And while the data misuse is an ugly heap of kitten, it's not creating a gambling addiction, it's abusing it, which is bad, but IMO it's not the cause but a consequence.

The entire Kinder Surprise Egg argument is only brought to establish that KSE are not in anyway as manipulated and controlled a product as lootboxes. It does not in any way delve into any of the mechanics which are being used to further customers behavior in spending more money. There is no artificial scarcity with KSE for example (which is a very wide used method to promote sales of goods in multiple industries). There is also no gratification or "winning" when buying and opening KSE for example, unlike many games and products in the digital market (often refered to pay-to-win mechanics).

@anninke.7469 said:So, if the main problem is in using algorithms to rip people off, we should be "punishing"
using the algorithms
and not lootboxes per se. And if the main problem is creating gambling habits, them those algorithms, as bad as they are, are not a relevant argument at all and the whole linked article is pretty much useless. It's like saying "Someone said, that strawberries are fruit, just as bananas. But strawberries are nothing like bananas, because they're not yellow and long."

The algorithms used are not sole responsible for gambling habbits. They simply increase the possibility as well as exposure. You can't simply ommit something because it's not part of the final chain if it is this strong of a catalyst.

This is even more of an issue when used on minors who have no concept of what they are being exposed to. For example: our brains react very strong to moving objects and flashing lights. Why? Because those thigns draw attention and our primitiv brain assumes it can either learn something or needs to react to something. That's why Casinos use flashy lights and lots of distracting effects. It literally bombards your brain with information exhausting it and making it potentially more susceptible to influence.

Your strawberry and banana comparison falls flat, unless there is a correlation between strawberries causeing people to eat more bananas and bananas being unhealthy.

@anninke.7469 said:What I'd like to get is a study proving whether or not KE are harmless in introducing kids into gambling. Where adults see just a worthless piece of plastic, kids might see an item of great value and take it all far more seriously. Honestly, is there even a real difference of objective value between a piece of pretty plastic that can be played with and a moving picture that can be played with?

This, while interesting and certainly already researched in papers which deal with reward behavior in our brains, is insignificant for the actual debate and nothing but a strawman. The issue if KSE are harmful or not is not of significance to the lootbox issue if there is established research that lootboxes and exploitative mechanics ARE harmful.

Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items.Isn't this actually making it worse, rather than better?

Depends on a view point. Having an actual material object means it is less removed in value and understanding for an individual. Digital goods and services are subject to abstraction. This can be dervied from financial abstraction which basically means: you do not perceive something to be real, as such it can have whatever value you believe it might have. There is a nice Tedx presentation on this from Adam Carroll on the subject of how his kids behaved differently when playing for real money in monopoly:

Suffice to say, the research into behavior with more and more goods and services and currencies being financially abstract is at the heart of some of the behavior sciences currently.

It is difficult to spend thousands of dollars on Kinder Eggs.Is the "how much" really that important? Many times I read, that the thrill of maybe getting what you want is what"s important and risky and that doesn't have to be dependant on amount spent.

When dealing with issues of addiction and effects on the brain, how much will very often be a very central question which needs answering. Most of the times, quantity will be a significant determening factor.

The transaction, user experience, and consequences are quite different.”Can't really argue on that one as I'm not an expert, but I guess that works more on individual basis. For me personally the BLC are pretty much the same as a KE in all ways I'm able to measure. I don't have any experience with lootboxes in other games.

I also can't agree that wider range of possible rewards (a car x a piece of string) is that much important, I think "desirable/popular/hyped vs not desirable" is much more what it's about. And you have that with KE, just as with lootboxes.

Well, I hope this still makes some sense after I rewrote it for about million times and with my English proving to be not all that good...

Go read up on fincial abstraction. Value and possible reward are central motivators behind gambling. There is a reason why the amount of people playing lotteries increases dramatically when the jackpot has grown in size for example.

But this is a subjective value. People are not more likely to gamble because the reward is bigger. They gamble because the perceived reward is bigger. This may seem pedantic but is an important distinction. For example if you really love burnt food. your goal is to collect as much burned food possible/ Then you might not be tempted to buy a lottery for a new car while you might be teùmmpted with burned food as a price.

No, that is actually incorrect.

What you are refering to is the mathematic chance of winning, which remains the same no matter the pay out. The actual win amount accross the entire function is higher with higher total reward. That's not a perceived reward, that is an actual higher reward, which is not subjective. The belief that one might win more or easier is not what I was refering to and is also, while certainly also a factor for less educated individuals a reason to gamble, not what constitutes the basic reasoning behing more people playing.

I was refering to this not only from a gambling addicts point of view, but rather from as many participants as possible. Non gambling addict participants might develope a gambling addiction and would then not be subject to rational reasoning when approaching gambling situations. Overall though, most non addicts will react similar in a certain way when rewards are increased while the stakes and risk remain the same. That is: a higher payout will entice more people to participate.

@"AlexxxDelta.1806" said:how user collected data and algorithms were to be used to manipulate gameplay in order to "encourage" more spending. Not only creating addiction through psychological conditioning but also reinforcing it. The whole thing is borderline creepy and the fact that it was filed is the scariest part. And it was filed years ago so who's to say similar systems aren't already in place?

There are already mechanics like this in place, one of the most unknown one is DYNAMIC DIFFICULTY ADJUSTMENT. Simply put: some games are designed in a way where they will automatically adjust their difficulty to a players skill level, without the player knowing or noticing. Some of these mechanics are already in place in multiplayer pairing for competative games, where say a player who has not played in a long time will get paired with weaker opponents or get unknown advantages to increase his chance for early wins (better auto aiming on consol for example).

Upper Echelon Gamer made a youtube video where he talks about this issue in relation to monetization:

Just putting this out there since I have a feeling most people don't even know what is possible with the amount of data gathered. DDA is just the tip of the iceberg by the way. There is way worse stuff already happening outside of gaming (well and in gaming but I think I've covered often enough that Anet and GW2 are not the main villains here, even if I am not a huge fan of the gemstore).

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Are you, then? If so, surely you can tell us what the issues with gambling are from a psychologist's perspective. And surely you wouldn't mind citing some of that research, since as a psychologist familiar with it you know just the articles you are referring to.

Not my job to educate you. Thanks. If you guys dont enjoy rng why play a rpg? Or play videogames at all, seems to me it's much too risky an activity for you and you dont seem to enjoy it anyways.

Please answer a simple question dear psychologist and I will consider myself educated if you do. It requires minimal effort on your part as a simple yes or no will suffice. I will even simplify it as much as I can.

So let's assume a parent completely fails to monitor their kid properly, should that kid be
legally
able to buy alcohol from a store or gamble in a casino? Just your opinion on this.

Here answer my question first, what is the difference between a lootbox and a breakfast cereal box with a random prize. If you can explain that I'd love to hear it and I'd love to hear why nobody is focusing on cereal at all.

It is generally considered bad manners to answer a question with a question. It also shows one is very keen on avoiding an answer. It's just a simple yes or no, why the struggle? You 've been very candid with your stance so far, no reason to stop now.

Nope not gonna answer till you answer mine

Ok then. Let's substitute cereal with a chocolate egg, same thing.

Here's your answer from, wait for it, a colleague of yours from the University of Adelaide!

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors. Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items. It is difficult to spend thousands of dollars on Kinder Eggs. The transaction, user experience, and consequences are quite different.”

And the relevant source :

Now please indulge me if you may. Your turn.

Lmao what a load of tripe. Everything you just said is complete nonsense because a kinder egg is definently the same thing as a lootbox.

Ok alchohol, not comparable to gambling or a lootbox. Do I think it should be regulated, yah because it inebriates people.

Gambling in a casino, no they shouldn't be able to just walk in and gamble as you can gamble money to win more money. Now if it was a casino filled with kinder eggs, sure lol. They call it a grocery store. Like a kinder egg, videogames are just for entertainment. And you can't turn a profit or wager your lively hood and possibly get an equal return on it. Do I think we need to worry about the few children who gamble away on kinder eggs? No more then the same people who play mmos forever hoping a great drop comes their way from farming.

You forgot about the liquor store doc. What about that?

Alchohol is not even on the same planet as gambling or lootboxes, why compare that?

Ok then. So apparently you consider some addictions fit for regulations and others not. And that means people (in this case you) can be the deciders and draw lines where they want. Picking and choosing what addiction is bad and what isn't pretty much.

But oh wait, isn't that you here ?

@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said: Lol and you're the sole decider of morality and where the line is drawn?

and here?

@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said: Lol it's like you guys just pick and choose what to be offended by with 0 logic.

These are pretty big contradictions doc, might want to look into that.

Well since we already have laws deciding what is and isn't gambling and lootboxes are clearly not that, there's no need to worry. Your children are fine. You asked ME my opinion, if "things" unrelated to lootboxes should be regulated, and when I said yes some things unrelated to lootboxes should be regulated you then use that to say oh who are you to decide what needs regulating. That is some crazy logic.

This whole thread is about a proposed
legislation
change doc. Just like in Belgium. Did you miss that? It's in the OP.

yah and I think its heavy handed, every person who has brought forward this type of legislation did it from a religious moral standpoint. Everyone who even talks about it here in the us always has a heavy religious background, so its pretty clear as to what it is these people want and who they are, and I completely disagree with it.

I also love how everyone in this thread has not mentioned what kind of regulation they want, or if that would even stop it or how it would be implemented or what it is, or how they can even justify the concept of some elements of RNG being ok and others are not in a RPG.

Can you support any of these statements with facts?

And which of the statements in question does this article support?

Do I really need to lead you to look into who is proposing what, do you really believe this isnt just religious morals, because that's all it is.

Do you have any proof?What about the co-sponsors of this bill (there are two of them: Blumenthal and Markey)?How about Rep. Chris Lee of Oahu (Hawaii House of Representatives) and his bill?

Can you prove that all these people are just trying to advance 'religious morals'?

I know what their religious views are. go look it up.

So, no factual support again?

It's not my job to look up things for you.It is your responsibility to support your claims with evidence. Otherwise, it is faith (e.g. religious morals).

@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said:Fact of the matter is, If you dislike lootboxes then you dislike the mystic forge, mount licences, rng drops from mobs, dye packs, magic find boosters, ecto gamble. All of these activities can be enhanced or done with real life money. Technically anything with variance you should be against, otherwise it's hypocritical. They are all variations on the exact same thing.

Even more so because black lion chests give no stat advantages, (so its not pay2win) have no monetary value, are entirely optional, and you get them from story and mob drops. In addition, all sources of gold in game can be converted into gems for keys, which means you're literally converting playtime (killing mobs and doing events for rng drops) into gems. And yes, of course, cash to gems for keys.

When you add all of this up, your argument is quite ridiculous.

Are you sure this is my argument?

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@Cyninja.2954 said:

And the relevant source :

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors.As someone who's been thinking about the Kinder Egg thing a lot, I was curious about that article, but I must say it was very dissapointing. It didn't really gave me any decent answers. It says the difference is in KE not getting your data and not using them against you
(hey, isn't that similat to what (not only) Google does? Collecting your data and behavior and using the info for making you spend money by showing you related ads...)
, which is true, but not collecting the data certainly does NOT automatically make KE harmless regarding getting a gambling habit. I'm saying that, because "let's protect kids from becoming gamblers" is mentioned often in this whole case. And while the data misuse is an ugly heap of kitten, it's not creating a gambling addiction, it's abusing it, which is bad, but IMO it's not the cause but a consequence.

The entire Kinder Surprise Egg argument is only brought to establish that KSE are not in anyway as manipulated and controlled a product as lootboxes. It does not in any way delve into any of the mechanics which are being used to further customers behavior in spending more money. There is no artificial scarcity with KSE for example (which is a very wide used method to promote sales of goods in multiple industries). There is also no gratification or "winning" when buying and opening KSE for example, unlike many games and products in the digital market (often refered to pay-to-win mechanics).

@anninke.7469 said:So, if the main problem is in using algorithms to rip people off, we should be "punishing"
using the algorithms
and not lootboxes per se. And if the main problem is creating gambling habits, them those algorithms, as bad as they are, are not a relevant argument at all and the whole linked article is pretty much useless. It's like saying "Someone said, that strawberries are fruit, just as bananas. But strawberries are nothing like bananas, because they're not yellow and long."

The algorithms used are not sole responsible for gambling habbits. They simply increase the possibility as well as exposure. You can't simply ommit something because it's not part of the final chain if it is this strong of a catalyst.

This is even more of an issue when used on minors who have no concept of what they are being exposed to. For example: our brains react very strong to moving objects and flashing lights. Why? Because those thigns draw attention and our primitiv brain assumes it can either learn something or needs to react to something. That's why Casinos use flashy lights and lots of distracting effects. It literally bombards your brain with information exhausting it and making it potentially more susceptible to influence.

Your strawberry and banana comparison falls flat, unless there is a correlation between strawberries causeing people to eat more bananas and bananas being unhealthy.

@anninke.7469 said:What I'd like to get is a study proving whether or not KE are harmless in introducing kids into gambling. Where adults see just a worthless piece of plastic, kids might see an item of great value and take it all far more seriously. Honestly, is there even a real difference of objective value between a piece of pretty plastic that can be played with and a moving picture that can be played with?

This, while interesting and certainly already researched in papers which deal with reward behavior in our brains, is insignificant for the actual debate and nothing but a strawman. The issue if KSE are harmful or not is not of significance to the lootbox issue if there is established research that lootboxes and exploitative mechanics ARE harmful.

Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items.Isn't this actually making it worse, rather than better?

Depends on a view point. Having an actual material object means it is less removed in value and understanding for an individual. Digital goods and services are subject to abstraction. This can be dervied from financial abstraction which basically means: you do not perceive something to be real, as such it can have whatever value you believe it might have. There is a nice Tedx presentation on this from Adam Carroll on the subject of how his kids behaved differently when playing for real money in monopoly:

Suffice to say, the research into behavior with more and more goods and services and currencies being financially abstract is at the heart of some of the behavior sciences currently.

It is difficult to spend thousands of dollars on Kinder Eggs.Is the "how much" really that important? Many times I read, that the thrill of maybe getting what you want is what"s important and risky and that doesn't have to be dependant on amount spent.

When dealing with issues of addiction and effects on the brain, how much will very often be a very central question which needs answering. Most of the times, quantity will be a significant determening factor.

The transaction, user experience, and consequences are quite different.”Can't really argue on that one as I'm not an expert, but I guess that works more on individual basis. For me personally the BLC are pretty much the same as a KE in all ways I'm able to measure. I don't have any experience with lootboxes in other games.

I also can't agree that wider range of possible rewards (a car x a piece of string) is that much important, I think "desirable/popular/hyped vs not desirable" is much more what it's about. And you have that with KE, just as with lootboxes.

Well, I hope this still makes some sense after I rewrote it for about million times and with my English proving to be not all that good...

Go read up on fincial abstraction. Value and possible reward are central motivators behind gambling. There is a reason why the amount of people playing lotteries increases dramatically when the jackpot has grown in size for example.

But this is a subjective value. People are not more likely to gamble because the reward is bigger. They gamble because the perceived reward is bigger. This may seem pedantic but is an important distinction. For example if you really love burnt food. your goal is to collect as much burned food possible/ Then you might not be tempted to buy a lottery for a new car while you might be teùmmpted with burned food as a price.

No, that is actually incorrect.

What you are refering to is the mathematic chance of winning, which remains the same no matter the pay out. The actual win amount accross the entire function is higher with higher total reward. That's not a perceived reward, that is an actual higher reward, which is not subjective. The belief that one might win more or easier is not what I was refering to and is also, while certainly also a factor for less educated individuals a reason to gamble, not what constitutes the basic reasoning behing more people playing.

I was refering to this not only from a gambling addicts point of view, but rather from as many participants as possible. Non gambling addict participants might develope a gambling addiction and would then not be subject to rational reasoning when approaching gambling situations. Overall though, most non addicts will react similar in a certain way when
rewards are increased while the stakes and risk remain the same
. That is: a
higher payout will entice more people to participate
.

@"AlexxxDelta.1806" said:how user collected data and algorithms were to be used to manipulate gameplay in order to "encourage" more spending. Not only creating addiction through psychological conditioning but also reinforcing it. The whole thing is borderline creepy and the fact that it was filed is the scariest part. And it was filed years ago so who's to say similar systems aren't already in place?

There are already mechanics like this in place, one of the most unknown one is
DYNAMIC DIFFICULTY ADJUSTMENT
. Simply put: some games are designed in a way where they will
automatically adjust their difficulty to a players skill level, without the player knowing or noticing
. Some of these mechanics are already in place in multiplayer pairing for competative games, where say a player who has not played in a long time will get paired with weaker opponents or get unknown advantages to increase his chance for early wins (better auto aiming on consol for example).

Upper Echelon Gamer made a youtube video where he talks about this issue in relation to monetization:

Just putting this out there since I have a feeling most people don't even know what is possible with the amount of data gathered. DDA is just the tip of the iceberg by the way. There is way worse stuff already happening outside of gaming (well and in gaming but I think I've covered often enough that Anet and GW2 are not the main villains here, even if I am not a huge fan of the gemstore).

I was not talking about the chance of winning though. For a better example

Take two prices. A piece of art worth about 1 million euro. And just 1 million dollar.

Now we organize 2 lotteries which are identical except that for 1 the prize is the art. For the other the prize is 1 million euros.

Which lottery will have the most participants?

It is almost always about the perceived value of things. People never do things because of what something is worth but because of what they perceive its worth to be.

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@yann.1946 said:

And the relevant source :

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors.As someone who's been thinking about the Kinder Egg thing a lot, I was curious about that article, but I must say it was very dissapointing. It didn't really gave me any decent answers. It says the difference is in KE not getting your data and not using them against you
(hey, isn't that similat to what (not only) Google does? Collecting your data and behavior and using the info for making you spend money by showing you related ads...)
, which is true, but not collecting the data certainly does NOT automatically make KE harmless regarding getting a gambling habit. I'm saying that, because "let's protect kids from becoming gamblers" is mentioned often in this whole case. And while the data misuse is an ugly heap of kitten, it's not creating a gambling addiction, it's abusing it, which is bad, but IMO it's not the cause but a consequence.

The entire Kinder Surprise Egg argument is only brought to establish that KSE are not in anyway as manipulated and controlled a product as lootboxes. It does not in any way delve into any of the mechanics which are being used to further customers behavior in spending more money. There is no artificial scarcity with KSE for example (which is a very wide used method to promote sales of goods in multiple industries). There is also no gratification or "winning" when buying and opening KSE for example, unlike many games and products in the digital market (often refered to pay-to-win mechanics).

@anninke.7469 said:So, if the main problem is in using algorithms to rip people off, we should be "punishing"
using the algorithms
and not lootboxes per se. And if the main problem is creating gambling habits, them those algorithms, as bad as they are, are not a relevant argument at all and the whole linked article is pretty much useless. It's like saying "Someone said, that strawberries are fruit, just as bananas. But strawberries are nothing like bananas, because they're not yellow and long."

The algorithms used are not sole responsible for gambling habbits. They simply increase the possibility as well as exposure. You can't simply ommit something because it's not part of the final chain if it is this strong of a catalyst.

This is even more of an issue when used on minors who have no concept of what they are being exposed to. For example: our brains react very strong to moving objects and flashing lights. Why? Because those thigns draw attention and our primitiv brain assumes it can either learn something or needs to react to something. That's why Casinos use flashy lights and lots of distracting effects. It literally bombards your brain with information exhausting it and making it potentially more susceptible to influence.

Your strawberry and banana comparison falls flat, unless there is a correlation between strawberries causeing people to eat more bananas and bananas being unhealthy.

@anninke.7469 said:What I'd like to get is a study proving whether or not KE are harmless in introducing kids into gambling. Where adults see just a worthless piece of plastic, kids might see an item of great value and take it all far more seriously. Honestly, is there even a real difference of objective value between a piece of pretty plastic that can be played with and a moving picture that can be played with?

This, while interesting and certainly already researched in papers which deal with reward behavior in our brains, is insignificant for the actual debate and nothing but a strawman. The issue if KSE are harmful or not is not of significance to the lootbox issue if there is established research that lootboxes and exploitative mechanics ARE harmful.

Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items.Isn't this actually making it worse, rather than better?

Depends on a view point. Having an actual material object means it is less removed in value and understanding for an individual. Digital goods and services are subject to abstraction. This can be dervied from financial abstraction which basically means: you do not perceive something to be real, as such it can have whatever value you believe it might have. There is a nice Tedx presentation on this from Adam Carroll on the subject of how his kids behaved differently when playing for real money in monopoly:

Suffice to say, the research into behavior with more and more goods and services and currencies being financially abstract is at the heart of some of the behavior sciences currently.

It is difficult to spend thousands of dollars on Kinder Eggs.Is the "how much" really that important? Many times I read, that the thrill of maybe getting what you want is what"s important and risky and that doesn't have to be dependant on amount spent.

When dealing with issues of addiction and effects on the brain, how much will very often be a very central question which needs answering. Most of the times, quantity will be a significant determening factor.

The transaction, user experience, and consequences are quite different.”Can't really argue on that one as I'm not an expert, but I guess that works more on individual basis. For me personally the BLC are pretty much the same as a KE in all ways I'm able to measure. I don't have any experience with lootboxes in other games.

I also can't agree that wider range of possible rewards (a car x a piece of string) is that much important, I think "desirable/popular/hyped vs not desirable" is much more what it's about. And you have that with KE, just as with lootboxes.

Well, I hope this still makes some sense after I rewrote it for about million times and with my English proving to be not all that good...

Go read up on fincial abstraction. Value and possible reward are central motivators behind gambling. There is a reason why the amount of people playing lotteries increases dramatically when the jackpot has grown in size for example.

But this is a subjective value. People are not more likely to gamble because the reward is bigger. They gamble because the perceived reward is bigger. This may seem pedantic but is an important distinction. For example if you really love burnt food. your goal is to collect as much burned food possible/ Then you might not be tempted to buy a lottery for a new car while you might be teùmmpted with burned food as a price.

No, that is actually incorrect.

What you are refering to is the mathematic chance of winning, which remains the same no matter the pay out. The actual win amount accross the entire function is higher with higher total reward. That's not a perceived reward, that is an actual higher reward, which is not subjective. The belief that one might win more or easier is not what I was refering to and is also, while certainly also a factor for less educated individuals a reason to gamble, not what constitutes the basic reasoning behing more people playing.

I was refering to this not only from a gambling addicts point of view, but rather from as many participants as possible. Non gambling addict participants might develope a gambling addiction and would then not be subject to rational reasoning when approaching gambling situations. Overall though, most non addicts will react similar in a certain way when
rewards are increased while the stakes and risk remain the same
. That is: a
higher payout will entice more people to participate
.

@"AlexxxDelta.1806" said:how user collected data and algorithms were to be used to manipulate gameplay in order to "encourage" more spending. Not only creating addiction through psychological conditioning but also reinforcing it. The whole thing is borderline creepy and the fact that it was filed is the scariest part. And it was filed years ago so who's to say similar systems aren't already in place?

There are already mechanics like this in place, one of the most unknown one is
DYNAMIC DIFFICULTY ADJUSTMENT
. Simply put: some games are designed in a way where they will
automatically adjust their difficulty to a players skill level, without the player knowing or noticing
. Some of these mechanics are already in place in multiplayer pairing for competative games, where say a player who has not played in a long time will get paired with weaker opponents or get unknown advantages to increase his chance for early wins (better auto aiming on consol for example).

Upper Echelon Gamer made a youtube video where he talks about this issue in relation to monetization:

Just putting this out there since I have a feeling most people don't even know what is possible with the amount of data gathered. DDA is just the tip of the iceberg by the way. There is way worse stuff already happening outside of gaming (well and in gaming but I think I've covered often enough that Anet and GW2 are not the main villains here, even if I am not a huge fan of the gemstore).

I was not talking about the chance of winning though. For a better example

Take two prices. A piece of art worth about 1 million euro. And just 1 million dollar.

Now we organize 2 lotteries which are identical except that for 1 the prize is the art. For the other the prize is 1 million euros.

Which lottery will have the most participants?

It is almost always about the perceived value of things. People never do things because of what something is worth but because of what they perceive its worth to be.

Those two items are valued similar according to your example. The barrier of converting the painting into liquid cash would have by far the highest effect on participation in the lottery. Even far above perception, simply because a vast amount of participants would not be experts. In case of only experts or wealthy individuals, I'd assume the painting would see more participation since most people who can afford 1 million dollar paintings are not in necessity of selling those immediately and art retains value better than liquid cash.

But that was not what I was refering to. I was talking about increased rewards attracting more participants. I gave the example of higher lottery jackpots drawing in more players. To adapt to your example: what would draw more participants, 1 million dollars or a painting valued at 10 million?

Perceived worth is obviously a thing. That's exactly what money and currency is for: it allows easy comparison between completely different things. As such, from a pure monetary value, perception is least significant.

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@Cyninja.2954 said:

And the relevant source :

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors.As someone who's been thinking about the Kinder Egg thing a lot, I was curious about that article, but I must say it was very dissapointing. It didn't really gave me any decent answers. It says the difference is in KE not getting your data and not using them against you
(hey, isn't that similat to what (not only) Google does? Collecting your data and behavior and using the info for making you spend money by showing you related ads...)
, which is true, but not collecting the data certainly does NOT automatically make KE harmless regarding getting a gambling habit. I'm saying that, because "let's protect kids from becoming gamblers" is mentioned often in this whole case. And while the data misuse is an ugly heap of kitten, it's not creating a gambling addiction, it's abusing it, which is bad, but IMO it's not the cause but a consequence.

The entire Kinder Surprise Egg argument is only brought to establish that KSE are not in anyway as manipulated and controlled a product as lootboxes. It does not in any way delve into any of the mechanics which are being used to further customers behavior in spending more money. There is no artificial scarcity with KSE for example (which is a very wide used method to promote sales of goods in multiple industries). There is also no gratification or "winning" when buying and opening KSE for example, unlike many games and products in the digital market (often refered to pay-to-win mechanics).

@anninke.7469 said:So, if the main problem is in using algorithms to rip people off, we should be "punishing"
using the algorithms
and not lootboxes per se. And if the main problem is creating gambling habits, them those algorithms, as bad as they are, are not a relevant argument at all and the whole linked article is pretty much useless. It's like saying "Someone said, that strawberries are fruit, just as bananas. But strawberries are nothing like bananas, because they're not yellow and long."

The algorithms used are not sole responsible for gambling habbits. They simply increase the possibility as well as exposure. You can't simply ommit something because it's not part of the final chain if it is this strong of a catalyst.

This is even more of an issue when used on minors who have no concept of what they are being exposed to. For example: our brains react very strong to moving objects and flashing lights. Why? Because those thigns draw attention and our primitiv brain assumes it can either learn something or needs to react to something. That's why Casinos use flashy lights and lots of distracting effects. It literally bombards your brain with information exhausting it and making it potentially more susceptible to influence.

Your strawberry and banana comparison falls flat, unless there is a correlation between strawberries causeing people to eat more bananas and bananas being unhealthy.

@anninke.7469 said:What I'd like to get is a study proving whether or not KE are harmless in introducing kids into gambling. Where adults see just a worthless piece of plastic, kids might see an item of great value and take it all far more seriously. Honestly, is there even a real difference of objective value between a piece of pretty plastic that can be played with and a moving picture that can be played with?

This, while interesting and certainly already researched in papers which deal with reward behavior in our brains, is insignificant for the actual debate and nothing but a strawman. The issue if KSE are harmful or not is not of significance to the lootbox issue if there is established research that lootboxes and exploitative mechanics ARE harmful.

Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items.Isn't this actually making it worse, rather than better?

Depends on a view point. Having an actual material object means it is less removed in value and understanding for an individual. Digital goods and services are subject to abstraction. This can be dervied from financial abstraction which basically means: you do not perceive something to be real, as such it can have whatever value you believe it might have. There is a nice Tedx presentation on this from Adam Carroll on the subject of how his kids behaved differently when playing for real money in monopoly:

Suffice to say, the research into behavior with more and more goods and services and currencies being financially abstract is at the heart of some of the behavior sciences currently.

It is difficult to spend thousands of dollars on Kinder Eggs.Is the "how much" really that important? Many times I read, that the thrill of maybe getting what you want is what"s important and risky and that doesn't have to be dependant on amount spent.

When dealing with issues of addiction and effects on the brain, how much will very often be a very central question which needs answering. Most of the times, quantity will be a significant determening factor.

The transaction, user experience, and consequences are quite different.”Can't really argue on that one as I'm not an expert, but I guess that works more on individual basis. For me personally the BLC are pretty much the same as a KE in all ways I'm able to measure. I don't have any experience with lootboxes in other games.

I also can't agree that wider range of possible rewards (a car x a piece of string) is that much important, I think "desirable/popular/hyped vs not desirable" is much more what it's about. And you have that with KE, just as with lootboxes.

Well, I hope this still makes some sense after I rewrote it for about million times and with my English proving to be not all that good...

Go read up on fincial abstraction. Value and possible reward are central motivators behind gambling. There is a reason why the amount of people playing lotteries increases dramatically when the jackpot has grown in size for example.

But this is a subjective value. People are not more likely to gamble because the reward is bigger. They gamble because the perceived reward is bigger. This may seem pedantic but is an important distinction. For example if you really love burnt food. your goal is to collect as much burned food possible/ Then you might not be tempted to buy a lottery for a new car while you might be teùmmpted with burned food as a price.

No, that is actually incorrect.

What you are refering to is the mathematic chance of winning, which remains the same no matter the pay out. The actual win amount accross the entire function is higher with higher total reward. That's not a perceived reward, that is an actual higher reward, which is not subjective. The belief that one might win more or easier is not what I was refering to and is also, while certainly also a factor for less educated individuals a reason to gamble, not what constitutes the basic reasoning behing more people playing.

I was refering to this not only from a gambling addicts point of view, but rather from as many participants as possible. Non gambling addict participants might develope a gambling addiction and would then not be subject to rational reasoning when approaching gambling situations. Overall though, most non addicts will react similar in a certain way when
rewards are increased while the stakes and risk remain the same
. That is: a
higher payout will entice more people to participate
.

@"AlexxxDelta.1806" said:how user collected data and algorithms were to be used to manipulate gameplay in order to "encourage" more spending. Not only creating addiction through psychological conditioning but also reinforcing it. The whole thing is borderline creepy and the fact that it was filed is the scariest part. And it was filed years ago so who's to say similar systems aren't already in place?

There are already mechanics like this in place, one of the most unknown one is
DYNAMIC DIFFICULTY ADJUSTMENT
. Simply put: some games are designed in a way where they will
automatically adjust their difficulty to a players skill level, without the player knowing or noticing
. Some of these mechanics are already in place in multiplayer pairing for competative games, where say a player who has not played in a long time will get paired with weaker opponents or get unknown advantages to increase his chance for early wins (better auto aiming on consol for example).

Upper Echelon Gamer made a youtube video where he talks about this issue in relation to monetization:

Just putting this out there since I have a feeling most people don't even know what is possible with the amount of data gathered. DDA is just the tip of the iceberg by the way. There is way worse stuff already happening outside of gaming (well and in gaming but I think I've covered often enough that Anet and GW2 are not the main villains here, even if I am not a huge fan of the gemstore).

I was not talking about the chance of winning though. For a better example

Take two prices. A piece of art worth about 1 million euro. And just 1 million dollar.

Now we organize 2 lotteries which are identical except that for 1 the prize is the art. For the other the prize is 1 million euros.

Which lottery will have the most participants?

It is almost always about the perceived value of things. People never do things because of what something is worth but because of what they perceive its worth to be.

Those two items are valued similar according to your example. The barrier of converting the painting into liquid cash would have by far the highest effect on participation in the lottery. Even far above perception, simply because a vast amount of participants would not be experts. In case of only experts or wealthy individuals, I'd assume the painting would see more participation since most people who can afford 1 million dollar paintings are not in necessity of selling those immediately and art retains value better than liquid cash.

But that was not what I was refering to. I was talking about increased rewards attracting more participants. I gave the example of higher lottery jackpots drawing in more players. To adapt to your example: what would draw more participants, 1 million dollars or a painting valued at 10 million?

Perceived worth is obviously a thing. That's exactly what money and currency is for: it allows easy comparison between completely different things. As such, from a pure monetary value, perception is least significant.

Tbf I would not be certain that a piece of art worth 10 million would attract more people then 1 million in cash would.

And this difficulty to transfer 1 in the other is part of the perceived value.

More importantly this topic came up in regard to chocolate egg lootboxes vs internet lootboxes. And people where making the case that the plastic toy would be valued so high with children it would cause problems. If 1 of the toys is part of a popular series for example.

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@"nerdshock.7406" said:

EDIT: Could you link me a paper which says that lootboxes increase the change of a gamblingaddiction? i can mostly find papers who say that the amount of problematic gambling has increased in the last decenia. But nothing about if that is linked with lootboxes perse.

Currently at the office, so I wasn't able to do a deep dive. But I found the following article:

Video game loot boxes are linked to problem gambling: Results of a large-scale survey

"The results of this study suggest that there is an important relationship between problem gambling and the use of loot boxes. The more severe that participants’ problem gambling was, the more money they spent on loot boxes."

I couldn't find any articles with a clear causal relationship between loot boxes > increased change of gambling addicition (while being at the office), but... isn't the chance of increasing problematic gambling reason enough to look closer at loot boxes?

As always, I'm sure more research needs to be done :#

I do not think that we are at the point where a clear causal relationship can be established with any certainty: The problem is new and there is not enough research. I also think that it is quite hard to isolate specific effects of loot boxes from the overall effects of game mechanics. For example, this meta-study mentions changes in brain activity and structure associated with playing video games (similar to changes due to substance-use disorders). The research it references does not deal with loot boxes. However, I would not be surprised if loot boxes activated the same pathways as some other, more 'innocent' game mechanics. As you said, more research needs to be done.

I still think that already existing research raises way too many red flags, not to mention, the evasive tactic employed by the gaming industry.

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@Cyninja.2954 said:

And the relevant source :

“A Kinder Surprise Egg does not collect your data. The Kinder Egg does not learn more about the person buying and opening the Egg, such as his or her preferences for its contents. The Kinder Egg does not adjust its contents according to an algorithm based on population data. People do not link their credit cards to Kinder Egg vendors.As someone who's been thinking about the Kinder Egg thing a lot, I was curious about that article, but I must say it was very dissapointing. It didn't really gave me any decent answers. It says the difference is in KE not getting your data and not using them against you
(hey, isn't that similat to what (not only) Google does? Collecting your data and behavior and using the info for making you spend money by showing you related ads...)
, which is true, but not collecting the data certainly does NOT automatically make KE harmless regarding getting a gambling habit. I'm saying that, because "let's protect kids from becoming gamblers" is mentioned often in this whole case. And while the data misuse is an ugly heap of kitten, it's not creating a gambling addiction, it's abusing it, which is bad, but IMO it's not the cause but a consequence.

The entire Kinder Surprise Egg argument is only brought to establish that KSE are not in anyway as manipulated and controlled a product as lootboxes. It does not in any way delve into any of the mechanics which are being used to further customers behavior in spending more money. There is no artificial scarcity with KSE for example (which is a very wide used method to promote sales of goods in multiple industries). There is also no gratification or "winning" when buying and opening KSE for example, unlike many games and products in the digital market (often refered to pay-to-win mechanics).

@anninke.7469 said:So, if the main problem is in using algorithms to rip people off, we should be "punishing"
using the algorithms
and not lootboxes per se. And if the main problem is creating gambling habits, them those algorithms, as bad as they are, are not a relevant argument at all and the whole linked article is pretty much useless. It's like saying "Someone said, that strawberries are fruit, just as bananas. But strawberries are nothing like bananas, because they're not yellow and long."

The algorithms used are not sole responsible for gambling habbits. They simply increase the possibility as well as exposure. You can't simply ommit something because it's not part of the final chain if it is this strong of a catalyst.

This is even more of an issue when used on minors who have no concept of what they are being exposed to. For example: our brains react very strong to moving objects and flashing lights. Why? Because those thigns draw attention and our primitiv brain assumes it can either learn something or needs to react to something. That's why Casinos use flashy lights and lots of distracting effects. It literally bombards your brain with information exhausting it and making it potentially more susceptible to influence.

Your strawberry and banana comparison falls flat, unless there is a correlation between strawberries causeing people to eat more bananas and bananas being unhealthy.

@anninke.7469 said:What I'd like to get is a study proving whether or not KE are harmless in introducing kids into gambling. Where adults see just a worthless piece of plastic, kids might see an item of great value and take it all far more seriously. Honestly, is there even a real difference of objective value between a piece of pretty plastic that can be played with and a moving picture that can be played with?

This, while interesting and certainly already researched in papers which deal with reward behavior in our brains, is insignificant for the actual debate and nothing but a strawman. The issue if KSE are harmful or not is not of significance to the lootbox issue if there is established research that lootboxes and exploitative mechanics ARE harmful.

Kinder Eggs are physical and can be given away or traded, unlike virtual items.Isn't this actually making it worse, rather than better?

Depends on a view point. Having an actual material object means it is less removed in value and understanding for an individual. Digital goods and services are subject to abstraction. This can be dervied from financial abstraction which basically means: you do not perceive something to be real, as such it can have whatever value you believe it might have. There is a nice Tedx presentation on this from Adam Carroll on the subject of how his kids behaved differently when playing for real money in monopoly:

Suffice to say, the research into behavior with more and more goods and services and currencies being financially abstract is at the heart of some of the behavior sciences currently.

It is difficult to spend thousands of dollars on Kinder Eggs.Is the "how much" really that important? Many times I read, that the thrill of maybe getting what you want is what"s important and risky and that doesn't have to be dependant on amount spent.

When dealing with issues of addiction and effects on the brain, how much will very often be a very central question which needs answering. Most of the times, quantity will be a significant determening factor.

The transaction, user experience, and consequences are quite different.”Can't really argue on that one as I'm not an expert, but I guess that works more on individual basis. For me personally the BLC are pretty much the same as a KE in all ways I'm able to measure. I don't have any experience with lootboxes in other games.

I also can't agree that wider range of possible rewards (a car x a piece of string) is that much important, I think "desirable/popular/hyped vs not desirable" is much more what it's about. And you have that with KE, just as with lootboxes.

Well, I hope this still makes some sense after I rewrote it for about million times and with my English proving to be not all that good...

Go read up on fincial abstraction. Value and possible reward are central motivators behind gambling. There is a reason why the amount of people playing lotteries increases dramatically when the jackpot has grown in size for example.

But this is a subjective value. People are not more likely to gamble because the reward is bigger. They gamble because the perceived reward is bigger. This may seem pedantic but is an important distinction. For example if you really love burnt food. your goal is to collect as much burned food possible/ Then you might not be tempted to buy a lottery for a new car while you might be teùmmpted with burned food as a price.

No, that is actually incorrect.

What you are refering to is the mathematic chance of winning, which remains the same no matter the pay out. The actual win amount accross the entire function is higher with higher total reward. That's not a perceived reward, that is an actual higher reward, which is not subjective. The belief that one might win more or easier is not what I was refering to and is also, while certainly also a factor for less educated individuals a reason to gamble, not what constitutes the basic reasoning behing more people playing.

I was refering to this not only from a gambling addicts point of view, but rather from as many participants as possible. Non gambling addict participants might develope a gambling addiction and would then not be subject to rational reasoning when approaching gambling situations. Overall though, most non addicts will react similar in a certain way when
rewards are increased while the stakes and risk remain the same
. That is: a
higher payout will entice more people to participate
.

@"AlexxxDelta.1806" said:how user collected data and algorithms were to be used to manipulate gameplay in order to "encourage" more spending. Not only creating addiction through psychological conditioning but also reinforcing it. The whole thing is borderline creepy and the fact that it was filed is the scariest part. And it was filed years ago so who's to say similar systems aren't already in place?

There are already mechanics like this in place, one of the most unknown one is
DYNAMIC DIFFICULTY ADJUSTMENT
. Simply put: some games are designed in a way where they will
automatically adjust their difficulty to a players skill level, without the player knowing or noticing
. Some of these mechanics are already in place in multiplayer pairing for competative games, where say a player who has not played in a long time will get paired with weaker opponents or get unknown advantages to increase his chance for early wins (better auto aiming on consol for example).

Upper Echelon Gamer made a youtube video where he talks about this issue in relation to monetization:

Just putting this out there since I have a feeling most people don't even know what is possible with the amount of data gathered. DDA is just the tip of the iceberg by the way. There is way worse stuff already happening outside of gaming (well and in gaming but I think I've covered often enough that Anet and GW2 are not the main villains here, even if I am not a huge fan of the gemstore).

I'm familiar with Upper Echelon and I remember watching that video. DDA might not be exactly the same as the Activision patent but in the end it serves the same purpose. It manipulates gameplay behind the scenes with the obvious goal of "engagement". And as we've seen many times mentioned in those conference calls, continuous engagement is the main component of recurring monetization. Keep players playing, keep players paying. Even if what's happening on screen is carefully constructed to evoke certain emotions and create triggers based on your behavioral profile. It doesn't matter if it's real or not as long as you keep playing (and paying).

And for that reason, I will never give the benefit of the doubt to gaming studios. Even the seemingly benign ones are part of the same industry and more or less use the same practices. I prefer being cynical and mistrusting than allow myself to be exploited just because I happen to like playing video games.

Plus, I know it might seem far-fetched but I think we are already seeing the fruits of labor from these systems. Consumers turning to corporate fandom, willing to defend obviously exploitative practices with near-religious fervor. Repeating flimsy excuses from corporate reps with mantra-like cadence. I can't begin to count how many times I 've seen buzz-phrases like "legal definition of gambling" repeated in threads like this. Used like it's something set in stone, when it's already been proven to be able to change. If that doesn't look suspiciously dogmatic, I don't know what is.

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Thank you all for your reactions. Now my small gray cells have a lot to go through :)

Just one more little thought - I guess that KE lose their innocence as a "pure surprise thing" in my eyes right the moment when the producer advertises "the latest coolest awesomest" set of cute collectible hippos/fairies/whatever during a kids TV show.

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@Cyninja.2954 said:

@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said:Just an observation, but the vast majority in here who are against black lion chests seem to have under 5k AP.

Same, here, check mine. Oh let me spare you the effort, it's above 33k AP. Not sure how this is in any way relevant to the issue but w/e.

One might argue that players with higher AP have more resources available with which to buy keys at large (and not really care about the fickle nature of RNG) whereas lower AP players may not? Thus, lower AP players might feel more inclined to buy keys with cash which could potentially lead them on a path of spending a lot of cash.

/shrug

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@kharmin.7683 said:

@Jumpin Lumpix.6108 said:Just an observation, but the vast majority in here who are against black lion chests seem to have under 5k AP.

Same, here, check mine. Oh let me spare you the effort, it's above 33k AP. Not sure how this is in any way relevant to the issue but w/e.

One might argue that players with higher AP have more resources available with which to buy keys at large (and not really care about the fickle nature of RNG) whereas lower AP players may not? Thus, lower AP players might feel more inclined to buy keys with cash which could potentially lead them on a path of spending a lot of cash.

/shrug

One could argue that, but I would add it to the list of things I read in this thread that make zero sense. A list that's getting pretty big.

AP don't equal gold. One could farm SW 24/7 and never do anything else in the game. Or, with enough starting capital, one can stay with their noobie armor in front of the TP and flip their way to GW2 riches. Have you ever noticed any characters like that, standing hours upon hours at the TP? They are pretty common. Next time you see one check their AP.

Although it's funny how the past few posts are suddenly about AP after an obviously successful attempt to direct attention away from the topic. I guess people are getting desperate.

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