In-game spending in console and PC video games should be regulated by gambling laws and loot boxes banned entirely for children, according to the DCMS’s parlimentary committee.
Following an inquiry into addictive and immersive technologies, committee members accused some of those in the games industry who had given evidence of a “lack of honesty and transparency”. DCMS Damian Collins said video games addiction was recognised by the World Health Organisation, and thus video game companies should contribute financially towards independent research into the long-term effects of gaming.
“Loot boxes are particularly lucrative for games companies but come at a high cost, particularly for problem gamblers, while exposing children to potential harm,” continued Collins. “Buying a loot box is playing a game of chance and it is high time the gambling laws caught up.”
The games industry’s UK trade body said it would review the recommendations given by the committee “with utmost seriousness”.