Will Star Wars Battlefront 2 Loot Boxes Bring Regulation Into Gaming?

On this episode of Transition, gamers Rishi Alwani and Mikhail Madnani join host Pranay Parab to talk about Star Wars Battlefront 2 loot boxes, Ashes Cricket, Destiny 2, IGX 2017, Demon’s Souls, and Deus Ex Mankind Divided. We begin the episode by talking about Star Wars Battlefront 2 and loot box legislation. The first thing we discuss is whether loot boxes are a form of gambling. We talk about the loot box regulations in China, European legislation attempts, CS: GO’s failed lottery system, and Gacha games in Japan. 

Then we mention how loot boxes are different from traditional forms of gambling, and why Star Wars Battlefront 2 in particular is in the spotlight. We wonder whether this game has brought the wrath of regulation on gaming and what are the downsides of having regulators interfering with video games. We conclude this segment by comparing the loot boxes in Overwatch against those in Battlefront 2.

Next up, we talk about claims that Bungie has been lying about Destiny 2 XP system. We begin by explaining the level scaling mechanics in Destiny 2, and how players discovered that the XP system was rigged. Then we talk about Bungie’s statement and whether it’s a good enough explanation. 

Then we bid a fond farewell to Demon’s Souls’ online component. Mikhail talks about the history of Demon’s Souls and measures it against other games in the series. Then we explain why the online component of the game is still quite popular and talk about the future of PS3 and Xbox 360 games, and how it’s decided by the number of people who play these games online.

Rishi then starts shedding tears over Square Enix claiming that Deus Ex is quite important to the studio. He talks about why Deus Ex is a big name in gaming, Deus Ex Mankind Divided controversies, and why you should be sad about the state of Deus Ex. Following that, we talk about Ashes Cricket, starting with why Big Ant Studios delayed the PC release and the game’s rather steep MRP and subsequent discounts within weeks of release.

Here the discussion takes us back to Steam Direct and what a disaster it is for PC gaming. This begins with a discussion on why developers delay PC releases. Rishi and Mikhail talk about the discoverability problem on Steam, low-quality games, and the rather low Steam Direct entry fee. Here we subtly point people to the Transition episode on Steam Direct.

Finally, we talk about IGX. Rishi recollects his experience playing Far Cry 5 over there, while Mikhail talks about an Indian game called Raji: An Ancient Epic and of course, Resident Evil on Nintendo Switch. We wrap up this episode by mentioning the games we’ve been playing this week, which includes Cat Quest, VA-11 Hall-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action, Zombie Bloxx (made by some of the people who worked on (the BioShock feature phone game), Hearthstone, Hitman, and Overwatch.

You can subscribe to Transition via Apple Podcasts or RSS or just listen to this episode by hitting the play button below. The music for this episode comes via Magnus Souleye Pålsson’s album PPPPPP, which is the soundtrack for the game, VVVVVV.