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Austrian court rules against Sony/EA in lootbox case: classified as illegal gambling; Sony ordered to refund cost

wvnative

Member
But then wouldn't any "mystery" toy be considered gambling. Kinder eggs, Funko's, etc?

Funkos? When I go to the store the Funko's I see exactly what's in them.

Kinder eggs and the like, yeah it opens up that can of worms, I dunno, maybe they should be considered gambling? I never engaged with those types of things.
 

Foilz

Member
Funkos? When I go to the store the Funko's I see exactly what's in them.

Kinder eggs and the like, yeah it opens up that can of worms, I dunno, maybe they should be considered gambling? I never engaged with those types of things.
Funko sells "mystery" mini figures and you have no clue what's in them. So does Disney and every other toy manufacturer
 

SafeOrAlone

Banned
GhostOfTsu tried to hide his post history so you canā€™t see that he is playing absolute defense for Sony in every Xbox or PlayStation thread. Then he comes here spamming emojis šŸ˜‚šŸ˜‚

This forum is hilarious sometimes. I even said I love Sony but criticizing them really breaks some people here.
 

Saber

Gold Member
People say things like this as if a company executive is pointing a gun to their head and forcing them to spend money on their crap.
You're not being manipulated. You're just weak and I feel no pity for anyone that falls for this.

This predactory strategy also applies to kids.
If it wasn't a big deal like you make to be, the entire globe wouldn't be doing researchs/investigations about the effects of lootboxes(and banning them), which as I said can be used against kids because rating E games can be full of these crap mechanics with no worries. Not to mention some sports games from EA who had literal slot machines on games.
Slot machine games being offered for kids, regardless of them paying or not is something absurdly terrible.
 
Except one important thing will happen all those PG & teenage game ratings will have to be 18 & mature because of the gambling. Killing a lot of their market reach when teenagers & kids are no longer able to be targeted to.
Let's be honest, those same kids who are underage will still buy and play Fifa, same way how they're still playing games like GtaV and Cod Warzone. This is going to be like the tobacco industry, where colorful packaging, and fruity flavors that was aimed at minors will become the norm for adults as well.
 
I mean.. anyone who has dealt with Sonys shitty customer service knows theyā€™re just going to ā€œrefundā€ this to PSN wallets, meaning they get the money back anyway šŸ˜†
Iā€™m quite sure it must be a monetary refund and itā€™s not allowed to refund in store credit.
 

hyperbertha

Member
I never understand the big uproar over loot boxes. You don't have to buy them so I don't see how it's a bad thing. Wouldn't any game that has a reroll feature where you use gems coins or whatever you could spend real money on inorder to change the contents of a store or chest be considered the same thing?

Also how is this a form of gambling if the contents can't be converted into funds outside the game?
you have to be a troll.
 

hyperbertha

Member
People say things like this as if a company executive is pointing a gun to their head and forcing them to spend money on their crap.
You're not being manipulated. You're just weak and I feel no pity for anyone that falls for this.
Two things can be true, the whales making them rich and the companies making money off of whales are both pathetic.
 

Gojiira

Member
Sony having to repay is just so glorious. Love much of what they do, but they have zero respect for their customers, so this is justā€¦ mmm.
Are you stupid? MS allows the same stupid lootbox shit, as does Steam, as does EGSā€¦They ALL should have to pay not just Sony, and doubly so for EA themselvesā€¦
 
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Are you stupid? MS allows the same stupid lootbox shit, as does Steam, as does EGSā€¦They ALL should have to pay not just Sony, and doubly so for EA themselvesā€¦

 

Foilz

Member
Are you stupid? MS allows the same stupid lootbox shit, as does Steam, as does EGSā€¦They ALL should have to pay not just Sony, and doubly so for EA themselvesā€¦
No one should have to pay a dime. People need to check themselves. If I sell Twinkies and insert a random pink Twinkie that is worth 1000000 and you waste your money on buying them then that's on you not me
 

Fbh

Gold Member
Good.
I still don't get how trading cards don't fall into the same category though.
I've been told its because you actually get a physical item from them (as opposed to non transferable digital items) but doesn't that make it even more like gambling?

And I also still don't get how all these kids get acces to credit cards though. Can't think of a single scenario outside of some emergency where I'd give my kids access to my credit card.
 
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IDKFA

Dickless
How is that any different than when kids are manipulated into spending their parents money on expensive ass jordans?

A lot different. If you buy a pair of Jordans you know exactly what you're getting. A physical pair of shoes (mid tops for me).

A better comparison would be trading card games like PokƩmon or Magic etc.
 

Three

Member
Any knock to Loot boxes is a win for games but in this specific case, isn't this essentially a ruling against EA?

I'm trying to work out how the platform is responsible beyond their royalty slice. Legally, all costs will be recouped from EA's coffers?
It's EAs game but because it was bought from the Sony store and it's an individual who has taken it to court Sony has to do the refund (since it was from their store) and claim the rest from EA. That's if they don't appeal this decision. They might even remove FIFA from the store.
 

01011001

Member
so does this mean Sony has to refund all lootbox purchases eventually in Austria? because Fifa is only the tip of the iceberg and this precedent seems like it would start a whole avalanche of isssues for all console holders and developers
 

Roni

Member
Hopefully lootboxes soon join the myriad of other bad ideas publishers have adopted and shelved over the years.
 

Aenima

Member
Are you stupid? MS allows the same stupid lootbox shit, as does Steam, as does EGSā€¦They ALL should have to pay not just Sony, and doubly so for EA themselvesā€¦
This case is just an individual player that sued Sony for selling the fut packs in they store. It will not move the needle cuz its not even EA, the creators of the lootboxes being sued.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
This stuff should be controlled by the gov.

But some reason when it comes to digital gambling on loot crates it's not regulated. Probably because there's so many companies and games doing it the gov has given up bothering to pursue.

But if a company that makes cereal wants to do a prize draw or website contest saying enter a ticket to win, it'd get regulated. It'd have to follow regulations and be transparent about odds of winning each prize. But with gaming baity box buys, it seems anyone can do it and no gov cares even though it involves people spending money. Most contests or draws you see from stuff you buy are free enters. Somehow zero fee contests hoping to win a prize is regulated more than ones that involve money.

Go figure.
 
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Three

Member
This stuff should be controlled by the gov.

But some reason when it comes to digital gambling on loot crates it's not regulated. Probably because there's so many companies and games doing it the gov has given up bothering to pursue.

But if a company that makes cereal wants to do a prize draw or website contest saying enter a ticket to win, it'd get regulated. It'd have to follow regulations and be transparent about odds of winning each prize. But with gaming baity box buys, it seems anyone can do it and no gov cares even though it involves people spending money. Most contests or draws you see from stuff you buy are free enters. Somehow zero fee contests hoping to win a prize is regulated more than ones that involve money.

Go figure.
Those aren't zero fee because they use it to sell the goods required to enter. I believe even games are required to state their drop rates.
https://www.gamesindustry.biz/nintendo-sony-microsoft-to-require-loot-box-odds-disclosure

It is illegal not to state them in some places.
 
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OuterLimits

Member
This stuff should be controlled by the gov.

But some reason when it comes to digital gambling on loot crates it's not regulated. Probably because there's so many companies and games doing it the gov has given up bothering to pursue.

But if a company that makes cereal wants to do a prize draw or website contest saying enter a ticket to win, it'd get regulated. It'd have to follow regulations and be transparent about odds of winning each prize. But with gaming baity box buys, it seems anyone can do it and no gov cares even though it involves people spending money. Most contests or draws you see from stuff you buy are free enters. Somehow zero fee contests hoping to win a prize is regulated more than ones that involve money.

Go figure.

Honestly I don't think many Governments care. Here in the U.S., it is occasionally brought up by a politician at federal level or a particular state but quickly forgotten. Probably because many states love gambling via lotteries. A bunch of kids getting addicted to gambling from loot boxes means many future customers standing in gas stations blowing their paycheck on scratch tickets not far down the road.

Perhaps I'm being too cynical. I doubt it though.
 

Chukhopops

Member
so does this mean Sony has to refund all lootbox purchases eventually in Austria? because Fifa is only the tip of the iceberg and this precedent seems like it would start a whole avalanche of isssues for all console holders and developers
No, but it means other people at least in Austria could start suing and get refunds either individually or as a group. Depending on Austrian law and how much legal precedent matters, this could make it really easy for ex-whales to get their money back - in fact platform holders could decide itā€™s cheaper to just refund without litigation.

Youā€™d probably need similar judgments in other EU countries for things to really snowball though.
 

recma12

Member
I speak German and even studied law for a few semesters before switiching to business IT.
Here is my analysis nobody asked for:

- lawyer of the FUT victims (fleeced for a few hundred up to 85k in the most extreme case) argued that the FUT transactions are null and void
- Lawyers Argument: FUT = gambling and Sony doesn't have an Austrian gambling license
- court sided with the FUT victims

So far so good, but allow me to rain on the parade a bit:
- the verdict isn't legally binding atm Sony can still fight the verdict
- "Bezirksgericht Hermagor" (district court) is a just a small local court, good first step to win here but sadly just a first step, this verdict doesn't change the laws in Austria overnight, let alone the EU
- the explanation for the verdict seems fishy to me. That court basically said, that FUT is gambling because the cards can be sold for money. Same is true for Panini or pokemon cards tbh
- expect a drawn out legal battle and even if Sony loses again, they will just block FUT in Austria and Austrian FUT junkies will buy packs on their German accounts, kinda like Belgians do on PSN France


Best case scenario:
- Austria ends up banning lootboxes by law
- momentum for a EU wide ban grows
- some "Whale" countries like Germany and France also ban that shit
 
As far as I know: Austrian gambling is a monopoly. So any decision about gambling is not because of pro consumer, but just that it violated monoploy laws, and so it is only a pro corporate judgement.

My youtube ads annoy me with that lawyer that talks about refunding all your online gamble loses because only xyz has a license so ANY other gambling loss is sort automatically refundable, since it wasn't legal in the first place, so easily nullified.

Imho is all the whining about lootboxes are bad BS. People should spent responsible. No sane person has to lose money involuntarily for this or has to give his credit card information to his minors. Fuck that failing grown up at this easy choice. The only time lootbox losses should be refundable is if an actual third party has stolen your card or something and the loot content did not land on your very own account.
 
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