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Psyonix pull Rocket League loot boxes from Belgium & Netherlands

Published: 09:10, 17 April 2019
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Image of the flags of Netherlands, Belgium and a loot crate
Netherlands and Belgium stern in their loot box removal

Psyonix have recently released update 1.61 for Rocket League which brought the esports shop to the game but it also removed loot crate keys from Belgium and Netherlands since those countries' governments don't tolerate any form of gambling.

Paid loot boxes are a major source of headache in the gaming industry due to players potentially shelling out real-life currency and not being guaranteed to get what they want. Belgium and Netherlands' governments have been pushing for stricter control of such items and it seems like Rocket League is the latest game those legislations affected.

Psyonix released patch 1.61 recently, which brought the esports where players could potentially purchase esports organisation-themed items in order to support their favourite pros. The update also included the removal of the ability to open crates with paid keys, due to regulations in the Netherlands and Belgium.

Furthermore, all the crate drops and drop chances can now be seen through the Crate Preview Screen.

This marked Rocket League as the latest in line of games whose loot boxes got regulated for these countries with Overwatch, Dota 2, Guild Wars 2, FIFA 18, Heroes of the Storm, Apex Legends and other games having removed or altered their systems before.

For example, Apex Legends modified the loot box system for Belgium so players no longer get them at certain milestones, but get the crafting materials instead, with which they can simply purchase the exact items they want.

Some people, like EA CEO Andrew Wilson for instance, claim loot boxes are not gambling because players are guaranteed to get something out of them. Let's be real here though - if you lost $100.000 on roulette in a casino but received a guaranteed dishrag upon doing so, it would still be gambling.

Blizzard The standard loot box in Overwatch Overwatch - Loot Box

It seems like the Netherlands and Belgium's governments are aware of the technicalities pro-loot box voices are relying on and are having none of it. The only difference here really is that a dishrag is actually useful, unlike the filler items in loot boxes.

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