The Gambling Commission said that loot boxes are not against current gambling laws. In fact, Ultimate Team card packs from FIFA 19 and loot boxes, in general, are not considered gambling at all. However, there are some concerns about the games and their popularity among children.
Neil McArthur, chief executive of the UKGC, told sportsbook pay per head reviews and news sites that loot boxes don’t monetize their contents. UK gambling laws only apply to prizes that have a monetary value. However, in-game virtual items don’t, even if they are resold or traded outside of the game.
An industry insider from Bookiepayperhead.net thinks that the Gambling Commission might be considering changing its rules to account for loot boxes. McArthur said that there are things that feel like gambling but existing laws tell you they are not. He added that some prize contests are not gambling because they have free entry. However, they have a lot of similarities to a lottery.
UK Gambling Laws on Loot Boxes
Game publishers are facing a constant battle against black markets where players resell in-game currency and items for real money. Sports betting platform providers have seen an increase in the number of sites trading virtual items from games in exchange for money.
Parents are concerned that their children are spending hundreds of pounds on in-game items. Also, they criticized loot boxes as a form of gambling. There’s only a small chance of getting the best item and kids are tempted to buy packs to try again.
Although the UK doesn’t classify loot box as gambling, some countries have banned such practice. For instance, Belgium banned them in 2018. However, the UK Gaming Commission said it is not their job to monitor games and third-party sites.
The Gambling Commission hearing took place a day before Rockstar Games is set to release the latest update to its GTA V game. According to gambling news reports, the new DLC features a virtual casino where players can gamble with in-game cash.