Australian politician Andrew Wilkie recently introduced a new bill that would provide regulations on loot boxes in video games. This bill would amend the Australian Classification Board’s rules so that any game that offered loot boxes would be reclassified as R18+ in order to stop children from utilizing these features. Moreover, games that offered loot boxes would be required to provide a warning for parents and guardians.
“By tempting young players with the potential-to-win game-changing items, encouraging risk-taking behavior for a possible reward, delivering random prizes on an intermittent basis, and encouraging them to keep spending money, it’s clear that loot boxes give rise to many of the same emotions and experiences associated with poker machines and other traditional gambling activities,” Wilkie said.
Wilkie had first shown an interest in introducing loot box legislation last year. As of this writing, this bill currently has the support of MP Andrew Wallace, who seconded the bill.
“We have our differences on many things, but the member for Clark has been an absolute strident champion in his desire to clean up the gambling industry — as have I,” Wallace said. “We stand shoulder to shoulder in this place to put big tech and the big gambling companies on notice that he and I, and anyone who wants to join us, will fight shoulder to shoulder to protect Australians who have become vulnerable to gambling.”
The likelihood of the bill being passed is currently unclear. But, according to PC Gamer, private member bills like this “are famously challenging to get passed.”
(All information was provided by GamesIndustry.biz, Kotaku, and PC Gamer)
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