Overwatch: Blizzard bypasses China’s booty box law

Due to a new law, Blizzard had to reveal in China, with which chance boot boxes in Overwatch to virtual objects of the different rarity levels granted. The company does not want to come to terms with it. With a small change to the box system the law is to be leveled out.

The announcement in the Chinese Overwatch Forum (via Google Translate) reveals that Blizzard does not sell boot boxes in China any longer. Instead, credit amounts are sold, the boxes are declared as gifts. Except for this change, the Box Bundles remain unchanged, but the prices in China are generally somewhat lower than the comparable offers for European users.

The trick of the change is the low credit amount, the actual value still make the booty boxes out. The cheapest items in the in-game shop, spraytags or sayings, cost 25 credits, in order to buy something in the game, would already have to be purchased the third largest package. The purchase of special skins, which buy 1,000 or 3000 credits, is not to be thought of – but that is wanted. There are still the booty boxes with gamble element, but again without marking.


Intransparency as a business model

With this, Blizzard is pushing a law that is designed to put an end to the proliferation of gaming machines in video games by forcing developers and providers of classic lucky games to achieve some transparency in terms of consumer protection. The fact that the mechanics themselves work well can be seen in the quarterly balance sheets of major publishers. Such systems, which benefit from established methods of gambling, but are released from any regulation, ensure constant and large profits in the new category “recurrent consumer spending” , As recently also Take Two has established.

That Blizzard is now trying to leverage this law in China, should give way to thinking. The data on prey distribution were vague anyway. It was unclear whether there were additional mechanics to keep the players in a good mood or to lure them to the purchase of boot boxes. It was questionable, despite the fact, whether skins were triggered for rarely played heroes or players who had not received a rare item for too long. With a “pity timer”, they had greater chances for rare items before turning to other games.

Therefore, the game is not Blizzard with the entire bootbox system, although the visual embellishments and their distribution have just been introduced with this reason. In the foreground is the maximization of profits and not the players, which can no longer be hidden behind beautiful sounding formulations. The new scheme does not have advantages for customers – just for Blizzard.




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