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PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds

Should the loot crates in PUBG be considered gambling?

Where do we draw the line for gambling?


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It's not news that PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG) features loot boxes, but players have been comparably alright with this compared to say Star Wars Battlefront II. Obviously, the fact that it is limited to cosmetic items and that it can be largely ignored helps. However, there's another problem with loot boxes and their contents being re-sold, and that is that we're approaching actual gambling territory as your winnings have an actual monetary value.

Now Polygon points out in a feature that the practices put in place by Bluehole and PUBG Corp could be seen as gambling, going as far as saying it almost looks like a game with "a themed casino attached".

The loot box system in PUBG is rather elaborate, and to be fair presented in a very transparent manner. Thus we know the exact odds of getting lucky with those rarest items. You earn the currency to buy boxes in-game, but there are also boxes that require keys to be opened, and these keys are bought for real money.

Furthermore, you're limited to just six boxes a week, something that naturally helps keep items rare and helps bolster the second-hand economy. This is where things really get murky, however, as on the Steam marketplace items for PUBG command some rather hefty prices and a small fortune can be made with a little bit of luck. Of course, the house, in this case, PUBG Corp and Steam, are always going to be winners after their cut.

Is PUBG heading down the same road as CS:GO where the skin trade gave rise to some rather predatory gambling sites?

PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds