The United Kingdom government is expected to weigh in on one of gaming’s hot topics: loot boxes.
UK citizens created a petition—called “Adapt gambling laws to include gambling in video games which target children”—on the UK Government and Parliament petition website asking the government to introduce gambling laws to regulate loot boxes. The petition has reached over 10,000 signatures, which guarantees it a government response. Should it hit 100,000 signatures, the petition will “be considered for debate in Parliament,” according to the website.
The petition comes at a time where loot boxes have come under scrutiny after the launch of Middle-Earth: Shadow of War and its complex loot box system. Some worry these loot boxes encourage “pay-to-win” scenarios.
But loot box issues have been around for years: The Chinese government actually created legislation that requires all developers to reveal loot box drop percentages. Developers have followed suit, releasing drop rates for loot boxes in China. Drops were revealed for worldwide Overwatch loot boxes in July, but Blizzard released the numbers for China earlier—they’re all the same.
The petition doesn’t detail exactly what it wants the government to do, but implies that laws similar to China’s would be ideal. The website suggests the government will respond in three days’ time.