Nintendo’s Reggie Fils-Aimé Says Loot Boxes Get a ‘Bad Rap’
Loot boxes, microtransactions, and the like are seemingly here to stay for the foreseeable future. Perhaps they will someday fizzle out similar to online passes that plagued the back half of the PS3/Xbox 360 console cycle. The general consensus now is that loot boxes are little more than a scourge on the industry. Star Wars: Battlefront II’s troubled release last fall only worked to elevate such concerns. Nintendo of America President, Reggie Fils-Aimé, suggests that a few bad apples are effectively ruining the batch.
An interview with Bloomberg features Fils-Aimé explaining his thoughts on the controversial monetization practice. “Loot boxes, broadly speaking, have gotten a bit of a bad rap,” he says. “The game mechanic of buying something that you’re not sure what’s inside is as old as baseball cards.” Fils-Aimé continues, adding that there are ways to ensure the consumer feels as though purchasing loot boxes is beneficial.
“What we believe at Nintendo is that a gameplay mechanic that offers the consumer something to buy that they’re not sure what’s inside can be interesting as long as that’s not the only way you can get those items. And that’s where some developers have made some mistakes. For us, its one of many mechanics we can use to drive on-going engagement in the game.”
His argument raises an interesting point. In lamenting the bad, we neglect to praise those who get it right–Overwatch serves as one notable example. Regardless, actions are being taken to avoid a repeat of Battlefront II. Admittedly, some actions, like the Belgian Gaming Commission ruling a few titles as “illegal gambling,” push the conversation in an unsettling direction. But perhaps the takeaway with regards to Fils-Aimé’s statement is that at least executives in the position to effect change are giving serious thought to doing just that.
[Source via Gamasutra]