EA’s Vice President of Legal Kerry Hopkins has been testifying in front of the United Kingdom’s Digital, Culture, Media & Sport Committee on the issue of microtransactions. When asked about “lootboxes”, Hopkins came up with a new and quite novel name for them: “Surprise mechanics.” “Well, first, we don’t call them lootboxes. We look at them as surprise mechanics…this is something people enjoy. They enjoy surprises.”
EA’s VP of legal and government affairs refuses to use the term ‘lootboxes’ in favor of ‘surprise mechanics’, compares them to Kinder Eggs, says they are not gambling and ‘quite ethical’https://t.co/IbRqMwvJeapic.twitter.com/bJ8t3Fkib6
— Nibel (@Nibellion)June 19, 2019
Hopkins continued to compare lootboxes to “surprise mechanics” that have, according to him, been around “for years, whether it’s Kinder Eggs, or Hatchanimals, or LOL Surprise.” He further defended the “surprise mechanics” in FIFA as being “quite ethical and quite fun, quite enjoyable to people”.
On further questioning, Hopkins stated that EA disagrees “that there’s evidence that shows it [lootboxes] leads to gambling. Instead, we think it’s like many other products that people enjoy in a healthy way, and like the element of surprise.”
You can listen to the full testimony starting at the 15:45 point in the Parliament proceedings replay.