Screenshot from FIFA 2022

Austrian Gamers Win FIFA Loot Box Case Against EA

In a small blow against the consistently controversial use of loot boxes in video games, an Austrian court has ordered Electronic Arts and Sony to pay €10,800 ($11,800) to gamers as part of a civil case. The money will be paid out to players who purchased FIFA Ultimate Team packs, marking the second time this year that courts in the country have ruled in favor of gamers arguing that loot boxes run afoul of Austrian gambling laws.

Austrian court orders €10,800 payout to players who purchased FIFA Ultimate Team packs

First reported by, the ruling came from a regional court located in Vienna. As in the case from earlier this year, the Austrian court ruled that the FIFA Ultimate Team pack loot boxes were not permitted under the country’s gambling laws. While this decision came from a lower court and will therefore have no impact on the legality of gaming loot boxes in Austria in general, it still represents a legal loss for the two gaming industry titans.

EA has chosen not to appeal the case, though the company did remark that it was “confident that our games do not constitute gambling and that we are in full compliance with local laws” in a statement. Loot boxes in EA games have been a point of contention for several years now, with many gamers expressing the belief that their inclusion dilutes the gameplay experience by punishing players unwilling to open their wallets. Seen by some as a de facto pay-to-win mechanic, EA’s loot boxes have frequently been the target of gamer-led legal actions against the publishing giant.

Since civil courts in Austria aren’t bound by previous rulings, it’s unclear what long-term effect, if any, this judgment will have on EA’s future monetization plans in the country. Although consumers won out in this case, EA did manage to get a previous ruling in the country overturned on appeal. It remains to be seen if EA Sports FC, set to release this Fall, will feature the same sorts of aggressive monetization features that have become a staple of its now-defunct FIFA franchise.