Club PA 2.0 has arrived! If you'd like to access some extra PA content and help support the forums, check it out at patreon.com/ClubPA
The image size limit has been raised to 1mb! Anything larger than that should be linked to. This is a HARD limit, please do not abuse it.
Our new Indie Games subforum is now open for business in G&T. Go and check it out, you might land a code for a free game. If you're developing an indie game and want to post about it, follow these directions. If you don't, he'll break your legs! Hahaha! Seriously though.
Our rules have been updated and given their own forum. Go and look at them! They are nice, and there may be new ones that you didn't know about! Hooray for rules! Hooray for The System! Hooray for Conforming!

Lootboxes, Microtransactions, and [Gambling in Gaming]

1333436383945

Posts

  • BogartBogart I Will Cure You Registered User, Moderator mod
    Yeah OK bitcoins are not the topic and I'm heading off a no doubt awful tangent about them right now.

    DarkPrimusInquisitor77Sleepdestroyah87ElvenshaeBullheadDizzy DabotkinForarThawmusTofystedethGennenalyse RuebenHappylilElfMan in the MistsshoeboxjeddyAegeri
  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    Why did we restart the CCG tangent?
    Is the argument:
    That they are not gambling? (they are)
    That they might get caught in the lootboxes are gambling regulations? (probably)
    That they should not be involved with lootbox regulations? (they should)
    I'm kinda lost.

    Ketarshryke
  • daveNYCdaveNYC Why universe hate Waspinator? Registered User regular
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Why did we restart the CCG tangent?
    Is the argument:
    That they are not gambling? (they are)
    That they might get caught in the lootboxes are gambling regulations? (probably)
    That they should not be involved with lootbox regulations? (they should)
    I'm kinda lost.

    I think the idea is that banning lootboxes would also ban CCGs. Which is glossing over the ability to write different regulations for different products.

    SleepElvenshaeMan in the Mists
  • discriderdiscrider Registered User regular
    edited September 2018
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Why did we restart the CCG tangent?
    Is the argument:
    That they are not gambling? (they are)
    That they might get caught in the lootboxes are gambling regulations? (probably)
    That they should not be involved with lootbox regulations? (they should)
    I'm kinda lost.

    I think it was that relative cost/value payouts are different.
    Or rather, that's the only difference I see in my list, so things like physical claw machines probably shouldn't be regulated as hard as gacha games, but only because they're not as effective or damaging.

    There was also the 'physical things have inherent value' but then my boxes of Magic cards sitting in a shipping container probably have negative value so....

    discrider on
    Steam Community page: http://steamcommunity.com/id/discrider/
    Oh hey! A knife!
  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    discrider wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Why did we restart the CCG tangent?
    Is the argument:
    That they are not gambling? (they are)
    That they might get caught in the lootboxes are gambling regulations? (probably)
    That they should not be involved with lootbox regulations? (they should)
    I'm kinda lost.

    I think it was that relative cost/value payouts are different.
    Or rather, that's the only difference I see in my list, so things like physical claw machines probably shouldn't be regulated as hard as gacha games, but only because they're not as effective or damaging.
    I don't agree with your premise.
    Just because something has lower relative cost/payout does not mean they should be free from regulations, or have reduced regulation.

    Now, digital lootboxes and CCG's might require different types of regulations, because digital goods are very different from physical goods.

  • milskimilski Their Will comes, at last, to Earth, to the Neath, as a storm crosses the sea. Registered User regular
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    discrider wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Why did we restart the CCG tangent?
    Is the argument:
    That they are not gambling? (they are)
    That they might get caught in the lootboxes are gambling regulations? (probably)
    That they should not be involved with lootbox regulations? (they should)
    I'm kinda lost.

    I think it was that relative cost/value payouts are different.
    Or rather, that's the only difference I see in my list, so things like physical claw machines probably shouldn't be regulated as hard as gacha games, but only because they're not as effective or damaging.
    I don't agree with your premise.
    Just because something has lower relative cost/payout does not mean they should be free from regulations, or have reduced regulation.

    Now, digital lootboxes and CCG's might require different types of regulations, because digital goods are very different from physical goods.

    At least partially, I followed up on the CCG tangent to correct misrepresentations of the actual value of cards and the most effective way of acquiring them. "The most efficient way to get cards is to crack open boxes of boosters" is a different (and wrong) scenario to "the most efficient way to get cards is to buy singles."

    My further point was that, while packs are still exploitative, the nature of the economy surrounding MTG puts several backstops against particularly terrible practices or exploitation that do not or cannot exist with untradeable digital goods. I don't know how much that should count for, but it seems silly to discount that as irrelevant to regulation.

    High, cold, eternal, immobile, minuscule. You endure; you burn.
    ElvenshaeMatevHahnsoo1
  • discriderdiscrider Registered User regular
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    discrider wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Why did we restart the CCG tangent?
    Is the argument:
    That they are not gambling? (they are)
    That they might get caught in the lootboxes are gambling regulations? (probably)
    That they should not be involved with lootbox regulations? (they should)
    I'm kinda lost.

    I think it was that relative cost/value payouts are different.
    Or rather, that's the only difference I see in my list, so things like physical claw machines probably shouldn't be regulated as hard as gacha games, but only because they're not as effective or damaging.
    I don't agree with your premise.
    Just because something has lower relative cost/payout does not mean they should be free from regulations, or have reduced regulation.

    Maybe; I just think these marketing tools are so pernicious that they will evade regulation due to being not-quite-as-abusive as gacha games.
    I don't think there's the same will to regulate arcade machines that are built to not payout until a requisite number of pulls are made, as there is to regulate electronic lootboxes.

    Steam Community page: http://steamcommunity.com/id/discrider/
    Oh hey! A knife!
  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    milski wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    discrider wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Why did we restart the CCG tangent?
    Is the argument:
    That they are not gambling? (they are)
    That they might get caught in the lootboxes are gambling regulations? (probably)
    That they should not be involved with lootbox regulations? (they should)
    I'm kinda lost.

    I think it was that relative cost/value payouts are different.
    Or rather, that's the only difference I see in my list, so things like physical claw machines probably shouldn't be regulated as hard as gacha games, but only because they're not as effective or damaging.
    I don't agree with your premise.
    Just because something has lower relative cost/payout does not mean they should be free from regulations, or have reduced regulation.

    Now, digital lootboxes and CCG's might require different types of regulations, because digital goods are very different from physical goods.

    At least partially, I followed up on the CCG tangent to correct misrepresentations of the actual value of cards and the most effective way of acquiring them. "The most efficient way to get cards is to crack open boxes of boosters" is a different (and wrong) scenario to "the most efficient way to get cards is to buy singles."

    My further point was that, while packs are still exploitative, the nature of the economy surrounding MTG puts several backstops against particularly terrible practices or exploitation that do not or cannot exist with untradeable digital goods. I don't know how much that should count for, but it seems silly to discount that as irrelevant to regulation.

    I very specifically mentioned that lootboxes and ccg's might require different types of regulation, because one is a physical good, and another digital.

    I simply do not agree that potentially lower cost/payout means CCG's should have reduced regulations.
    And i suspect lot of the regulations to make lootboxes less predatory would pose no major obstacle for physical CCG's, because they can make money from just selling cards.

  • milskimilski Their Will comes, at last, to Earth, to the Neath, as a storm crosses the sea. Registered User regular
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    milski wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    discrider wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Why did we restart the CCG tangent?
    Is the argument:
    That they are not gambling? (they are)
    That they might get caught in the lootboxes are gambling regulations? (probably)
    That they should not be involved with lootbox regulations? (they should)
    I'm kinda lost.

    I think it was that relative cost/value payouts are different.
    Or rather, that's the only difference I see in my list, so things like physical claw machines probably shouldn't be regulated as hard as gacha games, but only because they're not as effective or damaging.
    I don't agree with your premise.
    Just because something has lower relative cost/payout does not mean they should be free from regulations, or have reduced regulation.

    Now, digital lootboxes and CCG's might require different types of regulations, because digital goods are very different from physical goods.

    At least partially, I followed up on the CCG tangent to correct misrepresentations of the actual value of cards and the most effective way of acquiring them. "The most efficient way to get cards is to crack open boxes of boosters" is a different (and wrong) scenario to "the most efficient way to get cards is to buy singles."

    My further point was that, while packs are still exploitative, the nature of the economy surrounding MTG puts several backstops against particularly terrible practices or exploitation that do not or cannot exist with untradeable digital goods. I don't know how much that should count for, but it seems silly to discount that as irrelevant to regulation.

    I very specifically mentioned that lootboxes and ccg's might require different types of regulation, because one is a physical good, and another digital.

    I simply do not agree that potentially lower cost/payout means CCG's should have reduced regulations.
    And i suspect lot of the regulations to make lootboxes less predatory would pose no major obstacle for physical CCG's, because they can make money from just selling cards.

    But I never said that. I said that the systems in place that make them less exploitative (which are not necessarily a difference between physical and digital) are what mean less regulation may be necessary.

    I am not saying that a third party market for cards makes them cheaper, therefore less regulation. I am saying that a third party market for cards inherently limits WOTC's ability to push people towards excessive amounts of pulls for specific cards, and that means regulation is less necessary.

    High, cold, eternal, immobile, minuscule. You endure; you burn.
    Elvenshae
  • BethrynBethryn Registered User regular
    edited September 2018
    Are we going to start arguing that casino chips make good paperweights or doorstops, and can be given to dealers or friends, and that makes them not gambling?

    The reason CCGs are comparable is because of the booster pack method of distribution, not the fact it's a physical card. Nor do secondary markets change the context of the method of distribution (otherwise Steam trading would invalidate a lot of problems, which it does not; in fact, it creates them [Unusual TF2 hat market] ). This isn't a matter of context superseding aspect, because the physicality and secondary market would remain completely intact if Richard Garfield or WotC had originally chosen a non-random design for distribution.

    Bethryn on
  • milskimilski Their Will comes, at last, to Earth, to the Neath, as a storm crosses the sea. Registered User regular
    Bethryn wrote: »
    Are we going to start arguing that casino chips make good paperweights or doorstops, and can be given to dealers or friends, and that makes them not gambling?

    The reason CCGs are comparable is because of the booster pack method of distribution, not the fact it's a physical card. Nor do secondary markets change the context of the method of distribution (otherwise Steam trading would invalidate a lot of problems, which it does not; in fact, it creates them [Unusual TF2 hat market] ). This isn't a matter of context superseding aspect, because the physicality and secondary market would remain completely intact if Richard Garfield or WotC had originally chosen a non-random design for distribution.

    The first paragraph strikes me as a hostile misreading of what people are saying. Beyond the jokes about burning cards for warmth, the value of physical cards is still that you can actually use them for their intended purpose; casino chips are an obviously bad metaphor for that. And nobody is saying that makes ccgs not gambling, just that it makes them not as exploitative.

    As far as secondary markets, it is absolutely the case that they change the context of how exploitative lootbox systems are. In the case of TF2, the effect is to make them more exploitative because it lets regular players attempt to target whales by opening boxes and gives them a false impression of how valuable a box is. In the context of MTG, where the cards have actual gameplay effects and a known price point without absurd rarities/limited quantity items, the secondary market acts as a backstop on exploitation.

    This is not saying boosters aren't gambling or shouldn't be regulated! It's just saying that context does matter, and making a terrible metaphor to say it doesn't just makes your position look unreasonable.

    High, cold, eternal, immobile, minuscule. You endure; you burn.
    SleepLord_AsmodeusElvenshae
  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    milski wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    milski wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    discrider wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Why did we restart the CCG tangent?
    Is the argument:
    That they are not gambling? (they are)
    That they might get caught in the lootboxes are gambling regulations? (probably)
    That they should not be involved with lootbox regulations? (they should)
    I'm kinda lost.

    I think it was that relative cost/value payouts are different.
    Or rather, that's the only difference I see in my list, so things like physical claw machines probably shouldn't be regulated as hard as gacha games, but only because they're not as effective or damaging.
    I don't agree with your premise.
    Just because something has lower relative cost/payout does not mean they should be free from regulations, or have reduced regulation.

    Now, digital lootboxes and CCG's might require different types of regulations, because digital goods are very different from physical goods.

    At least partially, I followed up on the CCG tangent to correct misrepresentations of the actual value of cards and the most effective way of acquiring them. "The most efficient way to get cards is to crack open boxes of boosters" is a different (and wrong) scenario to "the most efficient way to get cards is to buy singles."

    My further point was that, while packs are still exploitative, the nature of the economy surrounding MTG puts several backstops against particularly terrible practices or exploitation that do not or cannot exist with untradeable digital goods. I don't know how much that should count for, but it seems silly to discount that as irrelevant to regulation.

    I very specifically mentioned that lootboxes and ccg's might require different types of regulation, because one is a physical good, and another digital.

    I simply do not agree that potentially lower cost/payout means CCG's should have reduced regulations.
    And i suspect lot of the regulations to make lootboxes less predatory would pose no major obstacle for physical CCG's, because they can make money from just selling cards.

    But I never said that. I said that the systems in place that make them less exploitative (which are not necessarily a difference between physical and digital) are what mean less regulation may be necessary.

    I am not saying that a third party market for cards makes them cheaper, therefore less regulation. I am saying that a third party market for cards inherently limits WOTC's ability to push people towards excessive amounts of pulls for specific cards, and that means regulation is less necessary.
    No, you did not, but Discriber did, and i answered that post, which is why i quoted it.
    As you quoted me, and seemed to argue that CCG's were somehow different from lootboxes (they're not, they are basicly boxes, with random loot, you buy for money), and then went to talk about how the physical nature of CCG's may require different types of regulation, i felt the need to point that this was what i already said.

  • BethrynBethryn Registered User regular
    edited September 2018
    milski wrote: »
    Bethryn wrote: »
    Are we going to start arguing that casino chips make good paperweights or doorstops, and can be given to dealers or friends, and that makes them not gambling?

    The reason CCGs are comparable is because of the booster pack method of distribution, not the fact it's a physical card. Nor do secondary markets change the context of the method of distribution (otherwise Steam trading would invalidate a lot of problems, which it does not; in fact, it creates them [Unusual TF2 hat market] ). This isn't a matter of context superseding aspect, because the physicality and secondary market would remain completely intact if Richard Garfield or WotC had originally chosen a non-random design for distribution.

    The first paragraph strikes me as a hostile misreading of what people are saying. Beyond the jokes about burning cards for warmth, the value of physical cards is still that you can actually use them for their intended purpose; casino chips are an obviously bad metaphor for that. And nobody is saying that makes ccgs not gambling, just that it makes them not as exploitative.

    As far as secondary markets, it is absolutely the case that they change the context of how exploitative lootbox systems are. In the case of TF2, the effect is to make them more exploitative because it lets regular players attempt to target whales by opening boxes and gives them a false impression of how valuable a box is. In the context of MTG, where the cards have actual gameplay effects and a known price point without absurd rarities/limited quantity items, the secondary market acts as a backstop on exploitation.

    This is not saying boosters aren't gambling or shouldn't be regulated! It's just saying that context does matter, and making a terrible metaphor to say it doesn't just makes your position look unreasonable.
    I don't think you understand the context of MTG at all. It functions exactly the same way as TF2's market.

    SCG and the secondary card market vendors are the whales (the people who try to collect a full foil set each release are by comparison only dolphins, which should tell you a lot). They already open huge numbers of packs themselves, bearing the heavy brunt of the irrelevant common ratio, and then make a business from it with arbitrage of relevant cards that players buy and sell. Players overvalue their booster packs because of how much they can sell a good draw to SCG etc. for at the artificially high prices SCG needs to stay in business after the cost of pack openings. The gameplay effects have no distinction from the perceived value of different unusual particle effects on hats. The irrelevant commons are straight up the duplicate in-game drop weapons from TF2, and things like paint etc. are the workhorse commons, uncommons and rares. (this is without even considering foils and the addition of mythics)

    In both of these cases, the price point is not known, it is perceived and largely set by the traders. The only known price points are those set by WotC/Valve; cards included in pre-built decks have a fixed maximum, similar to name tags and keys which can be bought directly from the TF2 store. And that's the important part; the existence of the TF2 store and the pre-built decks acts as a sort of quote currency/reserve to stop player valuation spiralling out of control (various Jace costs lol). But only for the items available on the store. If they were to offer everything primarily through direct purchase, secondary markets for gambling would be limited in a reasonable fashion. As it is, they aren't.

    Which is why it falls back to casino chips; they're only worth something as long as the casino says they are, as long as you can access the casino, and as long as the casino will let you trade them in.

    Bethryn on
    Doodmanndiscrider
  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    edited September 2018
    Phyphor wrote: »
    shryke wrote: »
    mrondeau wrote: »
    Turns out that in unlicensed gambling, not only is it advantageous for the casino to manipulate the random number generator, it's super easy to do, and there's no government authority monitoring the process and auditing the system.

    So yes, you can assume without too many doubt that the randomness is not random, and that the process is manipulated to get you to spend more. Constantly.

    We already know they do it the opposite way. Blizzard at least has openly talked about their system being structured to pay you out with the highest level of rarity objects after some number of pulls of the slots handle without winning one normally.

    I would be shocked if someone out there wasn't doing it in the other direction.

    Such manipulation would be visible eventually. Aggregation of player data is the ultimate statistical analysis, for example there is data on hundreds of thousands of hearthstone packs being opened, if the rate was non-uniform that would be visible

    What aggregation of player data?

    There's some out there for some Blizzard games but all of it from what I know strongly implies that the results are not entirely RNG. Which is the whole point. It already happens. There's basically no chance at all that someone else isn't doing it in the other direction.

    shryke on
    mrondeauThawmus
  • milskimilski Their Will comes, at last, to Earth, to the Neath, as a storm crosses the sea. Registered User regular
    Starting with "you don't understand the market you explained upthread" is not doing you any favors. You seem totally disinterested in responding to what I've actually written.

    Again, the point about the cards being physical is not about their value, it's about their usability. If the bottom drops out on the MTG market, I can still use the cards to play Magic. That is not an irrelevant factor.

    Also, for your venom about how little I understand the market, you seem more interested in forcing your metaphor here than actually understanding it yourself. The price for packs itself, along with competition, puts a pretty hard cap on the price for cards from wholesalers. If they try to increase their margins, they naturally run into the issue where it becomes cheaper to just buy a booster box, so the equilibrium for card prices is pretty set for sets still being made. And if the packs are primarily being opened by wholesalers who open so many packs they have a consistent stock of cards and open them cheaply enough players have no economic incentive to open packs, then the actual exploitative lootbox nature of the game is greatly diminished (unless you think WOTC is "exploiting" SCG by letting them make a ton of money).

    Also, bringing up Jace is totally nonsensical, because that's a card that has a high price because he isn't being sold anymore, not because of lootbox issues. You could just as well point out a Black Lotus costs thousands of dollars, but it's not because there's a 1/1 million chance to pull one, it's because there are maybe a couple thousand on the planet.

    High, cold, eternal, immobile, minuscule. You endure; you burn.
    Forardestroyah87ElvenshaeLord_AsmodeusHahnsoo1AridholDizzy DDarkPrimusabotkinJeep-Eep
  • IncenjucarIncenjucar Audio Game Developer Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited September 2018
    Since when is categorizing gambling based on whether or not the winnings were permanent?

    That just seems to affect the value you receive. If a $10 slot machine always won you a bus ticket good for that week it's still gambling.

    Incenjucar on
    Aridhol
  • milskimilski Their Will comes, at last, to Earth, to the Neath, as a storm crosses the sea. Registered User regular
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    Since when is categorizing gambling based on whether or not the winnings were permanent?

    That just seems to affect the value you receive. If a $10 slot machine always won you a bus ticket good for that week it's still gambling.

    Who is making that argument?

    My point is that the permanent nature of the cards, along with other factors, changes how exploitative the system is. It doesn't stop it from being gambling, but it does mean that the psychological effects wielded by WOTC for paper magic are of lesser severity than those wielded by e.g. Gacha games, or hell, for MtG arena (F2P magic)

    High, cold, eternal, immobile, minuscule. You endure; you burn.
    SleepElvenshaeLord_AsmodeusDarkPrimusabotkin
  • ForarForar #432 Toronto, Ontario, CanadaRegistered User regular
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    Since when is categorizing gambling based on whether or not the winnings were permanent?

    That just seems to affect the average value you receive. If a $10 slot machine always won you a fun-size candy bar it's still gambling.

    I feel we've been over this at length in the last few pages. It can be gambling, CCG makers could be required to put actual statistical odds on their packs, and I don't think anyone here would shed a tear.

    But some arguments keep conflating them as being equal in severity or scope, and I (and others) are noting that there are important distinctions present.

    Stubbing my toe or breaking my arm are both physical injuries, but only one of them needs immediate professional medical attention. If improvements to the nation's medical services also help me better take care of the stubbed toe, awesome, but the broken arm ward being full of assholes with sledgehammers and no understanding of what a cast is, that's where I think greater ire and attention should be directed, personally.

    Hell, the basics of magic packs are pretty well known at this point; You'll have a Land, X Commons, Y Uncommons, 1 Rare. One in Eight packs will have a Mythic Rare. A small number will have a foil card, which could be a land or it could be a mythic rare. While some earlier sets had certain cards more common or uncommon than others (feel free to read up on "C1 vs C2" type things, or just trust me on this, it's more boring than we need to dive into), everything I saw back when I kept tabs on the game more seriously indicated that card print runs were equal (or close enough to it) within a rarity; as in, they printed as many OMG YAY Mythic cards as WTF HOW IS THIS MYTHIC cards.

    This is already more information than most lootbox games present. In my experience at least, I'll probably know the full scope of what will be received within (as in, all the possible options), but games like Galaxy of Heroes (which I'm practically hate-playing at this point) will promise a chance at getting drastically better rewards, despite the odds being astronomical in actually getting them.

    Long story short, I see no harm in better regulating physical CCGs, but the nature of the product allows for manners of bypassing some of the more frustrating and egregious elements of most game lootboxes that I've seen/participated in. It doesn't excuse any concerns with randomness found in those packs of cards, I just think that EA's predatory bullshit is the bigger issue to address. WOTC cleaning up their act a little too would be nice, but I don't think nearly as many people are potentially ruining their lives buying magic cards, as there are people spending simply stupid amounts of money on Smurfberries and Crystals and whatever other Premium Currency bullshit happens to exist in a given game.

    First they came for the Muslims, and we said NOT TODAY, MOTHERFUCKER!
    milskiSleepIlpalaElvenshaeLord_AsmodeusabotkinJeep-Eep
  • tbloxhamtbloxham Registered User regular
    milski wrote: »
    Starting with "you don't understand the market you explained upthread" is not doing you any favors. You seem totally disinterested in responding to what I've actually written.

    Again, the point about the cards being physical is not about their value, it's about their usability. If the bottom drops out on the MTG market, I can still use the cards to play Magic. That is not an irrelevant factor.

    Also, for your venom about how little I understand the market, you seem more interested in forcing your metaphor here than actually understanding it yourself. The price for packs itself, along with competition, puts a pretty hard cap on the price for cards from wholesalers. If they try to increase their margins, they naturally run into the issue where it becomes cheaper to just buy a booster box, so the equilibrium for card prices is pretty set for sets still being made. And if the packs are primarily being opened by wholesalers who open so many packs they have a consistent stock of cards and open them cheaply enough players have no economic incentive to open packs, then the actual exploitative lootbox nature of the game is greatly diminished (unless you think WOTC is "exploiting" SCG by letting them make a ton of money).

    Also, bringing up Jace is totally nonsensical, because that's a card that has a high price because he isn't being sold anymore, not because of lootbox issues. You could just as well point out a Black Lotus costs thousands of dollars, but it's not because there's a 1/1 million chance to pull one, it's because there are maybe a couple thousand on the planet.

    The price of a CCG pack is overwhelmingly set to support the most influential tournement type, which is draft. Packs cost what they cost because thats the amount of profit game stores want to make when they have to host a draft tournament. The rarities and powers are what they are to make draft interesting and fun.

    When you buy a Magic the gathering card pack then the thing you are overwhelmingly doing is paying 1/3 the price of playing in a magic the gathering draft tournament. You can do all sorts of other things with the cards too, but even if you chucked them in the garbage therafter then most people have still enjoyed their tournament fun. Top level folks do play constructed competitively, but those people never open packs to get cards.

    A magic card pack is pretty much a ticket to a draft tournement. At which you will recieve 4 hours of fun in exchange for your ~$18 purchase, and, at the end you get to keep all your cards. If you want to shuffle up all your cards again and do another draft at home with your friends, then thats great! If you want to sell your cards then and there to the store, then thats great! If you want to keep them, and use a couple of them in constructed decks, even boosting them up to near competitive tournement levels with a few key purchases then thats great too.

    Opening a box of known cost and getting some random fun stuff inside is not fundamentally bad or predatory. Its the structure around it which makes it predatory. And online games tend towards terrible structures which enhance addictive behavior and poor player experience, whereas magic simply due to it being a physical game is already better than any online game ever could be in terms of 'fairness to the purchaser'

    "That is cool" - Abraham Lincoln
  • milskimilski Their Will comes, at last, to Earth, to the Neath, as a storm crosses the sea. Registered User regular
    tbloxham wrote: »
    milski wrote: »
    Starting with "you don't understand the market you explained upthread" is not doing you any favors. You seem totally disinterested in responding to what I've actually written.

    Again, the point about the cards being physical is not about their value, it's about their usability. If the bottom drops out on the MTG market, I can still use the cards to play Magic. That is not an irrelevant factor.

    Also, for your venom about how little I understand the market, you seem more interested in forcing your metaphor here than actually understanding it yourself. The price for packs itself, along with competition, puts a pretty hard cap on the price for cards from wholesalers. If they try to increase their margins, they naturally run into the issue where it becomes cheaper to just buy a booster box, so the equilibrium for card prices is pretty set for sets still being made. And if the packs are primarily being opened by wholesalers who open so many packs they have a consistent stock of cards and open them cheaply enough players have no economic incentive to open packs, then the actual exploitative lootbox nature of the game is greatly diminished (unless you think WOTC is "exploiting" SCG by letting them make a ton of money).

    Also, bringing up Jace is totally nonsensical, because that's a card that has a high price because he isn't being sold anymore, not because of lootbox issues. You could just as well point out a Black Lotus costs thousands of dollars, but it's not because there's a 1/1 million chance to pull one, it's because there are maybe a couple thousand on the planet.

    The price of a CCG pack is overwhelmingly set to support the most influential tournement type, which is draft. Packs cost what they cost because thats the amount of profit game stores want to make when they have to host a draft tournament. The rarities and powers are what they are to make draft interesting and fun.

    When you buy a Magic the gathering card pack then the thing you are overwhelmingly doing is paying 1/3 the price of playing in a magic the gathering draft tournament. You can do all sorts of other things with the cards too, but even if you chucked them in the garbage therafter then most people have still enjoyed their tournament fun. Top level folks do play constructed competitively, but those people never open packs to get cards.

    A magic card pack is pretty much a ticket to a draft tournement. At which you will recieve 4 hours of fun in exchange for your ~$18 purchase, and, at the end you get to keep all your cards. If you want to shuffle up all your cards again and do another draft at home with your friends, then thats great! If you want to sell your cards then and there to the store, then thats great! If you want to keep them, and use a couple of them in constructed decks, even boosting them up to near competitive tournement levels with a few key purchases then thats great too.

    Opening a box of known cost and getting some random fun stuff inside is not fundamentally bad or predatory. Its the structure around it which makes it predatory. And online games tend towards terrible structures which enhance addictive behavior and poor player experience, whereas magic simply due to it being a physical game is already better than any online game ever could be in terms of 'fairness to the purchaser'

    I mostly agree with this but I'd point out that pack prices are set as much for casual environment/expected secondary market wholesaler purchases as for draft, and draft itself is basically a loss leader for most stores because cards themselves have thin margins and staff time + prizes tend to mean draft is an ineffective use of the store's time unless it converts to other sales.

    High, cold, eternal, immobile, minuscule. You endure; you burn.
    Elvenshae
  • BethrynBethryn Registered User regular
    Labelling me as "hostile" is venomous enough for the both of us. If you'd wanted a polite response, you wouldn't have opened with that. Continuing to be a condescending goose afterwards hardly helps your moral high ground case either.

    This argument is essentially a conflation of two separate arguments regarding the worth of Magic cards over digital goods. The first is that they have worth because they can be used for their intended purpose of playing a game. I responded to this one on the last page, in the sense that the same can be said of goods in a game that can be played offline vs bots/local co-op/vs ai (and that this argument doesn't hold water for the ability to sell them via lootboxes). The second is that they have worth because there is a secondary market through which they can be bought and sold. This is what draws the comparison to casino chips. When you combine the two, you get a nonsensical argument about how casino chips have worth because they can be traded to the casino, and because they can be used as paperweights, which illustrates why both arguments regarding Magic cards are equally nonsensical, and should be kept separate (and even then, both are still wrong).

    The entire argument is "we can't have anything happen to MtG; MtG should be exempt because they are totally different!" and I am pointing out that the ways you describe MtG as being different are actually both present in digital goods, and do not serve as an argument against lootboxes there either. Ultimately, I do not accept your attempt to slide the debate down to "lootboxes in games would be fine if the games can still be played offline and if players can trade their digital content with each other."

    (SCG would actually qualify as being part of the problem despite also being the whales; the same was true of the hat traders in TF2. They're essentially the second layer in the pyramid scheme, but since they've found a third layer, their losses to the first layer have been paid off.

    A particular Jace was highly priced [£50] on launch both because of artificial rarity and power, which was why I brought him up, rather than in the context of his price today)

  • DacDac Registered User regular
    V1m wrote: »
    Dac wrote: »
    Of course the only think EA would take a hardline stance on would be the ability to exploit the psychologically vulnerable for $$$.

    This very thread is stuffed full of apologetics for the practice. I don't know why you'd think it's only EA.

    I didn't say it was only EA...

    Steam: catseye543
    PSN: ShogunGunshow
    Origin: ShogunGunshow
  • SleepSleep Registered User regular
    edited September 2018
    The difference between me selling a booster pack of magic cards, and me selling a random roll for magic items in a 4e d&d game I'm running for real world cash is pretty obvious.

    Gacha games and loot boxes are that second one.

    Both are gambling to an extent. One is markedly more exploitative than the other.

    Sleep on
    ForarElvenshaeMatevLord_AsmodeusDacMan in the MistsAegeriabotkin
  • BethrynBethryn Registered User regular
    Sleep wrote: »
    The difference between me selling a booster pack of magic cards, and me selling a random roll for magic items in a 4e d&d game I'm running for real world cash is pretty obvious.

    Gacha games and loot boxes are that second one.
    Nope. The difference between inherent value (MtG booster pack: paper cost, ink cost, art cost, development cost | HS card pack: server cost, art cost, development cost) and perceived brand/functional value is equally large in both. The majority of the value is perceived (and thus price), and that perception is massively enhanced through rarity via the gambling distribution system. If WotC tried to sell the Jace I was talking about earlier to players directly at £50, it would be seen as ridiculous for them to ask such a price for the card. But because they make the card acquisition random, people will shell out to buy it from SCG because they accept the artificial rarity and don't attribute it to WotC directly, thus psychologically justifying the cost to themselves.

    Jace isn't a once-in-a-lifetime historical masterpiece painted by Michelangelo that has perceived value in humans because of its historical rarity, it's a card that WotC can print identically as many times as they want, but decide not to (see also: rules on proxy cards)

  • IncenjucarIncenjucar Audio Game Developer Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    milski wrote: »
    Incenjucar wrote: »
    Since when is categorizing gambling based on whether or not the winnings were permanent?

    That just seems to affect the value you receive. If a $10 slot machine always won you a bus ticket good for that week it's still gambling.

    Who is making that argument?

    My point is that the permanent nature of the cards, along with other factors, changes how exploitative the system is. It doesn't stop it from being gambling, but it does mean that the psychological effects wielded by WOTC for paper magic are of lesser severity than those wielded by e.g. Gacha games, or hell, for MtG arena (F2P magic)

    It just seems to be what focused on the most in these threads. If gambling should be regulated, CCGs and lootboxes should be regulated. The details should just determine the nature of those regulations.

    jammushryke
  • AiouaAioua Ora Occidens Ora OptimaRegistered User regular
    I've been following this thread and I'm not even really sure what things people are arguing about.

    I think it's pretty clear that TCGs are less exploitative than lootboxes and IMO that's why they've been unregulated for all these years. Heck in terms of meatspace 'totally not gambling' things like chuck e cheese style ticket games are the worst offender, though TCGs are the bigger market for sure.

    My read is a lot of this is trying to draw bright lines between TCGs and lootboxes to guard against hypothetical regulation that would sweep up both. In my opinion at this point lootboxes have ruined it for everyone and they all do deserve to get swept up (or change their formats). I think for any new regulations to be effective and consistent you gotta ban blindboxes and booster packs along with random skin drops and locked digital chests.

    life's a game that you're bound to lose / like using a hammer to pound in screws
    fuck up once and you break your thumb / if you're happy at all then you're god damn dumb
    that's right we're on a fucked up cruise / God is dead but at least we have booze
    bad things happen, no one knows why / the sun burns out and everyone dies
    FANTOMASdiscriderMan in the Mists
  • SleepSleep Registered User regular
    edited September 2018
    Bethryn wrote: »
    Sleep wrote: »
    The difference between me selling a booster pack of magic cards, and me selling a random roll for magic items in a 4e d&d game I'm running for real world cash is pretty obvious.

    Gacha games and loot boxes are that second one.
    Nope. The difference between inherent value (MtG booster pack: paper cost, ink cost, art cost, development cost | HS card pack: server cost, art cost, development cost) and perceived brand/functional value is equally large in both. The majority of the value is perceived (and thus price), and that perception is massively enhanced through rarity via the gambling distribution system. If WotC tried to sell the Jace I was talking about earlier to players directly at £50, it would be seen as ridiculous for them to ask such a price for the card. But because they make the card acquisition random, people will shell out to buy it from SCG because they accept the artificial rarity and don't attribute it to WotC directly, thus psychologically justifying the cost to themselves.

    Jace isn't a once-in-a-lifetime historical masterpiece painted by Michelangelo that has perceived value in humans because of its historical rarity, it's a card that WotC can print identically as many times as they want, but decide not to (see also: rules on proxy cards)

    Play full proxy, my friends and I do it all the time. You definitely don't need to spend the £50 just to play the card outside tournament play.

    Inside tournament play they could definitely sell that jace at £50, and not one thing would change, the cost wouldn't be ridiculous it would just be their asking price for it. Folks have payed way more for a singular model necessary to play warhammer for sure. Hobbies cost money (and many are inherently exploitative by nature). You're getting to some real nothing has value type argument here at which point we can just say money has no inherent value and is only good so long as the country exists.

    That's really all entirely besides the point

    There's a marked difference between me selling you a concrete item you now own and control forever and me selling you literally nothing but an imaginary thing to get forward on an imaginary treadmill I could just take away at a whim.

    Adventurers league charging you real money for in game items would be ludicrous. But throw some pretty lights on that imaginary item, and now it's all aces? Digital games where you buy your way forward in the game, totally without gambling, is already exploitative enough, prompting folks to buy those bullshit imaginary items by making it so you have to gamble for them is wildly more exploitative.

    Sleep on
    Lord_AsmodeusElvenshae
  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    edited September 2018
    Sleep wrote: »
    The difference between me selling a booster pack of magic cards, and me selling a random roll for magic items in a 4e d&d game I'm running for real world cash is pretty obvious.

    Gacha games and loot boxes are that second one.

    Both are gambling to an extent. One is markedly more exploitative than the other.
    Is it?
    Does a digital book have value?
    Does a mmo expansion or dlc?
    Why wouldn't a magical item in my d&d campaign have value?

    Lootboxes (as they are), may be more exploitative than MtG booster packs (as they are), but i don't think it is because one has digital items and others physical ones.
    Which is more predatory depends more on business practices, not on physical v digital divide.

    Nyysjan on
  • BethrynBethryn Registered User regular
    Sleep wrote: »
    Play full proxy, my friends and I do it all the time. You definitely don't need to spend the £50 just to play the card outside tournament play.

    [...]

    There's a marked difference between me selling you a concrete item you now own and control forever and me selling you literally nothing but an imaginary thing to get forward on an imaginary treadmill I could just take away at a whim.
    These two sentences are right beside each other. Come on, take that last step. You're paying for imaginary value. The reason you think players would be willing to pay £50 for Jace (again, a piece of cardboard no matter how physical it is) directly is because you're stuck in the maze that WotC designed.

    This is part of the problem. People think that because they've identified one psychological trick, they've gotten past the scam. These systems are not pulling just one bit of wool over your eyes, there are layers and layers to the balaclava. The entire point is to create an ecosystem in which Wizards can sell an infinitely reproducible piece of card for £50, and even for people who understand the basis to continue to buy into the rest of the system.

    discrider
  • AiouaAioua Ora Occidens Ora OptimaRegistered User regular
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Sleep wrote: »
    The difference between me selling a booster pack of magic cards, and me selling a random roll for magic items in a 4e d&d game I'm running for real world cash is pretty obvious.

    Gacha games and loot boxes are that second one.

    Both are gambling to an extent. One is markedly more exploitative than the other.
    Is it?
    Does a digital book have value?
    Does a mmo expansion or dlc?
    Why wouldn't a magical item in my d&d campaign have value?

    Lootboxes (as they are), may be less exploitative than MtG booster packs (as they are), but i don't think it is because one has digital items and others physical ones.
    Which is more predatory depends more on business practices, not on physical v digital divide.

    Physical stuff is still exploiting people's psyches just not to the same extent.

    People wouldn't directly pay Wizards the same price for a chase rare that they're willing to pay a card shop. It'd get decried as pay2win bullshit. But give an out, you could in theory get this card for the cost of a booster, and the mental calculus changes.

    life's a game that you're bound to lose / like using a hammer to pound in screws
    fuck up once and you break your thumb / if you're happy at all then you're god damn dumb
    that's right we're on a fucked up cruise / God is dead but at least we have booze
    bad things happen, no one knows why / the sun burns out and everyone dies
  • tbloxhamtbloxham Registered User regular
    edited September 2018
    Aioua wrote: »
    I've been following this thread and I'm not even really sure what things people are arguing about.

    I think it's pretty clear that TCGs are less exploitative than lootboxes and IMO that's why they've been unregulated for all these years. Heck in terms of meatspace 'totally not gambling' things like chuck e cheese style ticket games are the worst offender, though TCGs are the bigger market for sure.

    My read is a lot of this is trying to draw bright lines between TCGs and lootboxes to guard against hypothetical regulation that would sweep up both. In my opinion at this point lootboxes have ruined it for everyone and they all do deserve to get swept up (or change their formats). I think for any new regulations to be effective and consistent you gotta ban blindboxes and booster packs along with random skin drops and locked digital chests.

    This logic is no more reasonable than saying that just because cocaine is bad we must now ban all medical chemicals because cocaine has medical uses and is thus the same.

    Magic offers me a physical item, I can use and play with it forever in whatever way I want. Wizards can never take it away from me.
    Magic cards continue to exist LONG after Wizards of the Coast changes the rules or shuts down.
    Old Magic cards retain their play value to the owners, who can simply set up their own 'internal' format where you can use say, all the sets from 2011 because thats when you bought all your cards
    Magic booster packs are overwhelmingly sold at the price they are and offer the rewards they do because that is what makes draft play fun and challenging
    If you do not WISH to pay for magic booster packs to play draft, then cube draft allows you to use your old cards. Just shuffle up 300 random cards, put 14 each in piles and have your players draft from those
    If I desire a specific magic card for a game (or ANY magic card) then I can look up exactly how much it costs to purchase, and buy it from my local game store or online. This creates a fair priced marketplace, which immediately eliminates 90% of any possible predatory behavior.
    If a specific magic card is offered for legal play by Wizards, but is of INSANE rarity and one of your friends has it, then the incentive to buy that insanely priced card is minimal because if it is so powerful then you can just proxy it in your own games for 0 cost. This limits the value of insane rarity cards outside of competitive constructed tournament play, where, as we've already discussed noone is buying booster packs.

    These factors and more mean that the point where we need to 'regulate magic the gathering' is the point where we have already banned ALL digitally distributed video games using a EULA, not just those with lootboxes.

    tbloxham on
    "That is cool" - Abraham Lincoln
    SleepLord_Asmodeus
  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    edited September 2018
    Aioua wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Sleep wrote: »
    The difference between me selling a booster pack of magic cards, and me selling a random roll for magic items in a 4e d&d game I'm running for real world cash is pretty obvious.

    Gacha games and loot boxes are that second one.

    Both are gambling to an extent. One is markedly more exploitative than the other.
    Is it?
    Does a digital book have value?
    Does a mmo expansion or dlc?
    Why wouldn't a magical item in my d&d campaign have value?

    Lootboxes (as they are), may be less exploitative than MtG booster packs (as they are), but i don't think it is because one has digital items and others physical ones.
    Which is more predatory depends more on business practices, not on physical v digital divide.

    Physical stuff is still exploiting people's psyches just not to the same extent.

    People wouldn't directly pay Wizards the same price for a chase rare that they're willing to pay a card shop. It'd get decried as pay2win bullshit. But give an out, you could in theory get this card for the cost of a booster, and the mental calculus changes.
    I did agree that MtG boosters (as they are) are not as exploitative as loot boxes (as they are).
    But nothing stops Wizards from changing how they sell boosters/cards to a more exploitative model, they probably won't, because they have a decent existing market now and trying to exploit customers more would probably shrink the customer base.

    edit-
    whoops, noticed i said lootboxes are less exploitative, when i meant to write more.
    /facepalm

    Nyysjan on
  • SleepSleep Registered User regular
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Sleep wrote: »
    The difference between me selling a booster pack of magic cards, and me selling a random roll for magic items in a 4e d&d game I'm running for real world cash is pretty obvious.

    Gacha games and loot boxes are that second one.

    Both are gambling to an extent. One is markedly more exploitative than the other.
    Is it?
    Does a digital book have value?
    Does a mmo expansion or dlc?
    Why wouldn't a magical item in my d&d campaign have value?

    Lootboxes (as they are), may be less exploitative than MtG booster packs (as they are), but i don't think it is because one has digital items and others physical ones.
    Which is more predatory depends more on business practices, not on physical v digital divide.

    No they don't, the video game industry is currently massively exploitative at its core, and at almost every level internally too. DLC is 100% exploitative as shit, especially if it's the only means by which to get "the real ending"

    Digital books don't have the same value as real books that's why they are cheaper.

    All the ephemeral shit we buy in the internet that depends on the provider still agreeing that we can use the service we paid money into to get an item are inherently exploitative. This is definitely one of those things no one's noticed as it was happening, and has resulted in folks just accepting that the ephemeral data connections are the same as a concrete item. They aren't. Your songs on iTunes? Exploitative. You don't actually own those pieces of media in any way, you can't hand them off and if apple decides so they can just ban you and take away all the things you bought. The ephemeralities of our current cyberpunk nightmare don't make it so a database connection saying I'm allowed to have x file is equivalent to me actually owning a record. Those things are not the same in any real sense. They are massively different and the difference in cost between those things illustrates that fact already.

  • HamHamJHamHamJ Registered User regular
    The regulations on physical CCGs seem adequate as is, in my experience. Their business practices are no worse than a lot of other hobbies like miniature games or boardgames. Or other sectors.

    The regulations on digital lootboxes and similar are clearly indequate and the entire industry is incredibly preditory.

    While racing light mechs, your Urbanmech comes in second place, but only because it ran out of ammo.
    ForarSleeptbloxhamLord_AsmodeusMan in the Mistsshoeboxjeddyabotkin
  • AiouaAioua Ora Occidens Ora OptimaRegistered User regular
    tbloxham wrote: »
    Aioua wrote: »
    I've been following this thread and I'm not even really sure what things people are arguing about.

    I think it's pretty clear that TCGs are less exploitative than lootboxes and IMO that's why they've been unregulated for all these years. Heck in terms of meatspace 'totally not gambling' things like chuck e cheese style ticket games are the worst offender, though TCGs are the bigger market for sure.

    My read is a lot of this is trying to draw bright lines between TCGs and lootboxes to guard against hypothetical regulation that would sweep up both. In my opinion at this point lootboxes have ruined it for everyone and they all do deserve to get swept up (or change their formats). I think for any new regulations to be effective and consistent you gotta ban blindboxes and booster packs along with random skin drops and locked digital chests.

    This logic is no more reasonable than saying that just because cocaine is bad we must now ban all medical chemicals because cocaine has medical uses and is thus the same.

    Magic offers me a physical item, I can use and play with it forever in whatever way I want. Wizards can never take it away from me.
    Magic cards continue to exist LONG after Wizards of the Coast changes the rules or shuts down.
    Old Magic cards retain their play value to the owners, who can simply set up their own 'internal' format where you can use say, all the sets from 2011 because thats when you bought all your cards
    Magic booster packs are overwhelmingly sold at the price they are and offer the rewards they do because that is what makes draft play fun and challenging
    If you do not WISH to pay for magic booster packs to play draft, then cube draft allows you to use your old cards. Just shuffle up 300 random cards, put 14 each in piles and have your players draft from those
    If I desire a specific magic card for a game (or ANY magic card) then I can look up exactly how much it costs to purchase, and buy it from my local game store or online. This creates a fair priced marketplace, which immediately eliminates 90% of any possible predatory behavior.
    If a specific magic card is offered for legal play by Wizards, but is of INSANE rarity and one of your friends has it, then the incentive to buy that insanely priced card is minimal because if it is so powerful then you can just proxy it in your own games for 0 cost. This limits the value of insane rarity cards outside of competitive constructed tournament play, where, as we've already discussed noone is buying booster packs.

    These factors and more mean that the point where we need to 'regulate magic the gathering' is the point where we have already banned ALL digitally distributed video games using a EULA, not just those with lootboxes.

    My argument isn't that TCGs are just as bad as lootboxes

    they are way way way less bad than lootboxes

    but I don't want lootboxes banned simply because of all the horrific stuff surrounding them, I want them banned because they are, at their core, unregulated gambling
    the fact that they are a horrible predatory version of this is what brings the attention and makes me think it's time to crack open the lawbooks and update our definitions on what, exactly, gambling is

    but when we do that I'm not comfortable drawing a line that makes digital TCGs gambling and physical TCGs not gambling

    that's what I mean whenI say I say lootboxes ruined it for everyone
    TCGs have been gambling since day 1 but it wasn't enough of a problem to make it worth addressing

    now that 'totally-not-gambling' is starting to become a major problem you gotta look at everything, not just the biggest troublemakers

    life's a game that you're bound to lose / like using a hammer to pound in screws
    fuck up once and you break your thumb / if you're happy at all then you're god damn dumb
    that's right we're on a fucked up cruise / God is dead but at least we have booze
    bad things happen, no one knows why / the sun burns out and everyone dies
  • milskimilski Their Will comes, at last, to Earth, to the Neath, as a storm crosses the sea. Registered User regular
    I think there could stand to be some additional regulation on CCGs; making the actual odds of everything clear and explicit on each pack would be helpful, along with making all cards of a stated rarity equivalent (e.g. no mythic rares that are 5x rarer than other mythics).

    Beyond that, we're in the age-restrict purchase/ban them without a gambling license territory, and while I can see the argument for the former I am not certain about it.

    High, cold, eternal, immobile, minuscule. You endure; you burn.
    SleepLord_AsmodeusshrykeFryAiouaIncenjucarabotkin
  • SleepSleep Registered User regular
    Aioua wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Sleep wrote: »
    The difference between me selling a booster pack of magic cards, and me selling a random roll for magic items in a 4e d&d game I'm running for real world cash is pretty obvious.

    Gacha games and loot boxes are that second one.

    Both are gambling to an extent. One is markedly more exploitative than the other.
    Is it?
    Does a digital book have value?
    Does a mmo expansion or dlc?
    Why wouldn't a magical item in my d&d campaign have value?

    Lootboxes (as they are), may be less exploitative than MtG booster packs (as they are), but i don't think it is because one has digital items and others physical ones.
    Which is more predatory depends more on business practices, not on physical v digital divide.

    Physical stuff is still exploiting people's psyches just not to the same extent.

    People wouldn't directly pay Wizards the same price for a chase rare that they're willing to pay a card shop. It'd get decried as pay2win bullshit. But give an out, you could in theory get this card for the cost of a booster, and the mental calculus changes.

    Games Workshop disapproves your theory here.

    In order to run in a legit tournament you need exact models. A single flash gits unit costs multiple hundreds of dollars last time I checked, and I'd have to build and paint them.

  • NyysjanNyysjan FinlandRegistered User regular
    Sleep wrote: »
    Nyysjan wrote: »
    Sleep wrote: »
    The difference between me selling a booster pack of magic cards, and me selling a random roll for magic items in a 4e d&d game I'm running for real world cash is pretty obvious.

    Gacha games and loot boxes are that second one.

    Both are gambling to an extent. One is markedly more exploitative than the other.
    Is it?
    Does a digital book have value?
    Does a mmo expansion or dlc?
    Why wouldn't a magical item in my d&d campaign have value?

    Lootboxes (as they are), may be less exploitative than MtG booster packs (as they are), but i don't think it is because one has digital items and others physical ones.
    Which is more predatory depends more on business practices, not on physical v digital divide.

    No they don't, the video game industry is currently massively exploitative at its core, and at almost every level internally too. DLC is 100% exploitative as shit, especially if it's the only means by which to get "the real ending"

    Digital books don't have the same value as real books that's why they are cheaper.

    All the ephemeral shit we buy in the internet that depends on the provider still agreeing that we can use the service we paid money into to get an item are inherently exploitative. This is definitely one of those things no one's noticed as it was happening, and has resulted in folks just accepting that the ephemeral data connections are the same as a concrete item. They aren't. Your songs on iTunes? Exploitative. You don't actually own those pieces of media in any way, you can't hand them off and if apple decides so they can just ban you and take away all the things you bought. The ephemeralities of our current cyberpunk nightmare don't make it so a database connection saying I'm allowed to have x file is equivalent to me actually owning a record. Those things are not the same in any real sense. They are massively different and the difference in cost between those things illustrates that fact already.
    Netflix? MMO's in general?
    Going to a movie is not inherently exploitative just because the experience is short lived.
    MMO's are not inherently exploitative just because servers eventually shut down.
    Loot boxes are not inherently exploitative because they are digital.

    I think you are too focused on the non permanence of the loot boxes as the core of the issue.

    lazegamer
  • milskimilski Their Will comes, at last, to Earth, to the Neath, as a storm crosses the sea. Registered User regular
    If everything gambling-ey had to have explicit drop rates, no fuzzing of data/unintuitive rarity mechanics, no pity timers or other drop rate modifications, and proof you're at least 13/16/18/21 or w/e to purchase I think it'd be a very solid starting ground, though admittedly the lower age limits there are a concession to prevent totally destroying markets for games aimed at teenagers.

    High, cold, eternal, immobile, minuscule. You endure; you burn.
    NyysjanAiouaLord_AsmodeusIncenjucarabotkin
  • BethrynBethryn Registered User regular
    HamHamJ wrote: »
    The regulations on physical CCGs seem adequate as is, in my experience. Their business practices are no worse than a lot of other hobbies like miniature games or boardgames. Or other sectors.
    Miniature games depends on the group. Model costs and paint costs often get marked up beyond what you would expect, but this is often to accommodate the need to own physical stores, production agreements, and design (although in-game rules regarding model usage are super questionable; not sure how big a thing this is any more). Boardgames, by comparison to both miniature games, and especially in comparison to CCGs, are positively saintly. They have relatively little markup over production costs in the vast majority of cases, and generally make their money through sheer popularity. Expansions sets are entirely optional, and there is no tournament system to ensure players need to keep up with power creep etc.

Sign In or Register to comment.