Currently, the Dutch Gaming Authority is working on measures against the creator of the popular soccer game FIFA. Last year this was the best-selling game in Europe. However, according to the authority it contains prohibited gambling elements. It has asked the American game developer EA to take these gambling elements out of the game, but that hasn’t happened so far.
The regulator and the game maker are talking about this, sources tell. Credible sources were also asked about gambling elements in games of the Dutch NOS Podcast about economic news, which is known as POEN. Economic news is everywhere. It’s important for everyone, but it’s not always immediately clear why or in what way. In POEN, Waaijers and Wouters bring economic stories from the bottom up. The result is that at end you understand better how the economy works.
Ultimate Team cards
The latest episode of the POEN podcast is about controversial earning models in the gaming industry, such as FIFA games. In this game players can buy so-called Ultimate Team cards. Beforehand, they don’t know which player they will get. If someone wants to have a rare player, he or she has to keep buying packages.
Selling cards is part of gambling
According to the law, the process mentioned above is no problem. However, the contents of the cards can be sold at trading places. By doing so, the content on the cards can be converted into money. And the Dutch Gaming Authority finds this a way of gambling. Besides that, it could encourage young players to actually gamble when they’re older.
The element of surprise
Derk de Geus of the Dutch game studio Paladin Studios said the following: “The depth of this kind of surprises in games can go much further. The experienced game makers know very well how big the chances are that you will get a very good player. And there are all kinds of bells and whistles attached. You always get the feeling that you’re just missing the point”.
Removal of loot boxes
The gaming authority has already tried to convince game makers to remove loot boxes. These are virtual treasure chests in games. Various gamblers have responded to this call. However, no changes have been made to the FIFA games yet.
Take legal action if necessary
The chairman of the Gaming Authority wrote earlier that he wants to take action against illegal loot boxes. “Take legal action if necessary, if everything else (letters, calls, warnings) doesn’t help”. The Gaming Authority has the right to impose a fine or a penalty. The fine can be up to 10 percent of the company’s turnover.