Why courts in Europe force game developers to ban some addictive features: Pokémon Go

Why courts in Europe force game developers to ban some addictive features: Pokémon Go
Pokémon Go, Germany, Belgium, eggs, minors... What do they have in common? PLEASE, bear with us!

Depending on your age (or hobbies!?) you may or may not know what Pokémon Go is. We got you! It’s a game available on both iOS and Android. That's where the technical part of this piece ends.

The game lets you hatch eggs, which have the role of a loot box. A loot box, loot crate, or lockbox is this thing you hit hard (in some games) so it cracks open, and you get a reward like a superpower, new outfit, or avatar.

Right… So far so good. Where do Germany and Belgium come from? Well, from Europe, but we hope you already knew that… The point is, they aren’t happy with the fact that kids who play PG get too much into opening those boxes, which can be a trigger for a gamblig addiction.

Most recently, EA Sports faced a $11.9 million fine for its Ultimate Team packs (where you get to ‘open’ Messi or Ronaldo) from court in the Netherlands. The UK has also been cracking down on introducing fines and measures.

So… Naturally, the guys from Niantic, who make PG, figured they want to avoid such problems and now let players peek through the eggs, so they can see what they might get. The feature hasn’t rolled out to everyone yet. It is currently being tested, with only a few players able to make use of it.

As someone, who is currently based in Germany, I can confirm that gambling is strictly reserved for those who can’t get addicted… Toddlers, who open chocolate eggs! In the end, 5-year-olds won’t even remember what they used to do when they were 3! However, this isn’t true for European courts. So, lookout game developers.


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