After a few weeks of controversies involving loot boxes, the Great Britain’s Government is now looking into the video game business model.
Word comes by way of Reddit user Artfunkel, who says that they met with their local MP, Daniel Zeichner, to ask Parliament what it is planning on doing to protect the publish from loot boxes.
Zeichner has two questions for Karen Bradley, Secretary of State for the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
The first asks: “What assessment the Government has made of the effectiveness of the Isle of Man's enhanced protections against illegal and in-game gambling and loot boxes; and what discussions she has had with Cabinet colleagues on adopting such protections in the UK”. Meanwhile, the second is concerned with what steps Bradley plans to take to protect ‘vulnerable adults and children’ from gambling, in-game gambling and loot boxes in games.
This follows three high-profile titles using the business model. Forza Motorsport 7, Star Wars Battlefront 2 and Middle-earth: Shadow of War all use loot boxes and have all come under fire for this.
What Parliament getting involved in this matter will do is uncertain. For years, the UK government was wary of video games, but in recent years there have been great strides to recognise the cultural benefits of games. In 2014, thanks to the hard work of trade body Ukie and then Culture Minister Ed Vaizey, the UK government secured tax relief for the UK games industry.