Like IAPs or in-app transactions, cashiers have become one of the “dirty words” in the gaming industry. Unlike other forms of microtransactions, however, loot boxes are also under legal scrutiny. Companies like EA were even fined for such widespread, but also unpopular, gameplay mechanics, but that did not stop EA from moving forward with this line of business. In fact, a new leak reveals that EA was intentionally trying to guide FIFA 21 players in this way, which, on second thought, may not be that surprising.
The implementation of FIFA 21 withdrawal boxes comes in the form of card packs that offer random rewards in FIFA Ultimate Team or FUT mode. These packages can be purchased using FIFA Points, which can be purchased for real money. This type of microtransaction is not exactly new or illegal, but it is the element of randomness in these loot boxes that is irritating regulators and even the penalties of some players.
According to a leaked document from an anonymous EA Insider, this aspect of FUT is not just some kind of side game. In fact, it is supposed to be the cornerstone of FIFA 21 and that the company must do everything to get players to it. The fact that EA wants more revenue from such resources shouldn’t be shocking, but the leading players in this direction, both intentionally and subtly, do not appeal to many of the company’s critics.
The problem is how loot boxes are seen as a form of gambling by some regulators and legislators. EA, of course, disagrees and cites how some of them have also refused to label cashboxes because of a critical element. While there is indeed randomness in what you are getting, there is actually no withdrawal, which, for some countries, is the definition of gambling.
EA’s official response to the leak also denies “pushing spending beyond earnings”. While he says how important FIFA Ultimate Team has been to the franchise over the decades, he argues that most FIFA players never spend money on microtransactions.