Microtransactions and Loot boxes – is it hurting the video game industry?
Play • 42 min

Introduction to “Microtransactions and Loot boxes – are they hurting the video game industry?”

In this episode of the Lifestyle, Travel & Technology podcast, the hosts, Alexander, Garry & Nikky cover the widely debated and controversial business model, where users purchase virtual goods through microtransactions. These can come in form of Loot boxes, which generates a random item ranging from different tiers or rarity. The hosts all have used this type of service in the past and speak about their experience of the matter at hand. They will discuss which game developers and games provide these services and highlight pros and cons of it. Parents are also affected by this and governments are trying to fight against game developers to control and limit the service, since revenue of microtransactions and subscriptions make up the bulk of the overall revenue generated. Some countries even banned this service completely as it violates their gaming laws.

Find out, who of the hosts have stopped using the service and how some games get unbalanced, due to “pay-to-win” possibilities. Some of the games you can’t even finish without paying for the last mission. 

Podcast Episode Summary

-          What are Microtransactions?

-          Loot boxes are like gambling 

-          Facebook games with Microtransactions

-          Kids using parents credit cards to finance their “addiction”

-          Gambling in Rockstar games (Red Dead redemption/Grand Theft Auto) 

-          Expansion packs before and now

-          Revenue in the video game industry with/without Microtransactions

-          Governments against Loot boxes and Microtransactions

-          Rocket league and their use of Loot boxes

-          League of Legends


Alex – “…you can cash in your winnings…”

Garry – “…that’s the problem with recent legislators with loot boxes…”

Nikky – “…it’s kind of like gambling in ways…”

Alex – “…you have to pay to finish the game…”

Recommended Resources

-          https://www.businessinsider.com/loot-boxes-gambling-illegal-2019-5?r=DE&IR=T#loot-boxes-are-expected-to-generate-50-billion-in-revenue-for-app-makers-by-2022-3

-          https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidthier/2019/05/08/new-microtransactionloot-box-bill-could-devastate-video-game-publishers-if-it-passes/#bd9843e676f0

-          https://www.intelligenteconomist.com/economics-of-microtransactions/

-          https://www.vg247.com/2020/01/29/battle-passes-worse-than-microtransactions/


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