Gambling Laws Force NBA 2K18 Changes In Belgium And Netherlands
Belgium and the Netherlands have been the most aggressive when it comes to legislating against the various forms of loot boxes, and 2K has been forced to make changes to NBA 2K18’s MyTeam mode to comply.
2K Games has recently announced that some elements of its MyTeam game modes for the NBA 2K series will be disabled in order to comply with the new gambling laws enforced in Netherlands and Belgium. 2K is complying to the laws enforced in Netherlands and Belgium separately.
For the Netherlands, 2K will block access to the Auction House, a marketplace where gamers can auction MyTeam cards that were earned as a reward through in-game progression or purchased with either in-game money or premium currency. Based on the interpretation of Netherland’s legislators, making items derived from purchasable loot boxes transferable in NBA 2K is a violation of their gambling laws.
2K Games stated that the team disagrees with the decision made by legislators in the Netherlands. “We will be continuing conversations with the Kansspelautoriteit in order to explain our view on how NBA 2K and the Auction House already comply with local laws,” wrote 2K Games in a official Statement. “If you agree, we recommend that you contact your local government representative to communicate your opinion. We will keep the community posted on any developments. We apologize for any inconvenience.”
Meanwhile, 2K Games is disabling the option to purchase MyTeam packs through VC, the game’s premium currency. Purchasing MyTeam packs through the in-game currency, MyTeam points, will still be possible in the game. This move was done by 2K after the Belgium Gaming Commission came to the decision that NBA 2K violated its gambling laws due to its loot box approach to MyTeam packs.
2K Games also believes that its NBA 2K series is compliant with Belgian’s gambling laws. “We will be continuing conversations with the BGC in order to explain our view on how NBA 2K and MyTeam pack purchases already comply with local laws,” stated 2K Games. If you agree, we recommend that you contact your local government representative to communicate your opinion. We will keep the community posted on any developments. We apologize for any inconvenience.”
These changes come in the wake of last year’s loot box controversy, with EA’s Star Wars Battlefront 2 sparking outrage for its “predatory” approach to microtransactions. Since then, a number of video games have dropped loot boxes completely.