Apple Now Requires Games With Loot Boxes to Disclose Probabilities of Winning

The most popular mobile platform is taking the lead on microtransactions.

News by Matt Kim, .

Apple has announced a new guideline for games coming to its App Store in regards to microtransactions. In a new policy, Apple will now require games on its App Store that feature microtransactions and loot boxes to disclose the probability of winning a certain loot or item.

You can find the change on Apple's website where the company writes:

Apps offering "loot boxes" or other mechanisms that provide randomized virtual items for purchase must disclose the odds of receiving each type of item to customers prior to purchase.

If this policy sounds familiar, that's because it's similar to anti-gambling regulations in China that also require games with random loot boxes to disclose the odds of winning certain items.

Apple is just one company however, and while it has a massively popular platform, Google hasn't announced a similar plan for its Play Store. This could lead to disparities in loot box odds between the two ecosystems.

However, Apple is arguably the most powerful name in mobile gaming thanks to its massive user base, and favored position among mobile app developers. So it's actually a pretty big deal for Apple to be leading the charge against microtransactions in the mobile space, especially as the controversy around them continues.

In recent months, microtransactions have shifted from a consumer issue, to a potential regulatory issue by some United States lawmakers. If Apple and the companies in charge don't step in, there's now a chance the governments will.

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Comments 2

  • Avatar for MetManMas #1 MetManMas 3 months ago
    Apple requiring loot box games to disclose their odds is a good start, but I think it's even more important that Google Play follow suit. iOS may be on the most popular devices (this is why Apple can run its own store for its devices), but Android is on Everything Else out there.

    It's likely that people will own an iPhone or iPad (least if they're willing to pay monthly subscription fees, those things are crazy expensive otherwise), but it's even more likely that they'll own some random device with an Android UI on it.
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  • Avatar for realchris2011 #2 realchris2011 3 months ago
    It's long overdue for the Governments to fix the problem at hand, the Companies are getting greedier by the day.
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