Black Ops 4 Director Admits Loot Boxes Weren't Originally Planned

Black Ops 4 Director Admits Loot Boxes Weren't Originally Planned

Loot boxes are in Black Ops 4 now, and they're not popular.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 recently introduced loot boxes with its last update Operation Grand Heist. What's more, new characters released for the update were locked inside the loot boxes, contradicting statements Treyarch made earlier about new characters. Now Black Ops 4's design director David Vonderhaar has issued a response to the angered community.

The Black Ops 4 community latched onto a Game Informer interview Vonderhaar did prior to the Black Ops 4 launch where he said new characters would be unlockable through missions and quests. That isn't the case with the newest Blackout characters added for the latest update.

The loot boxes are also the latest monetization device in Black Ops 4, further incensing the community. Black Ops 4 now features a pricey season pass, Fortnite-style battle pass, and cosmetics shop.

Vonderhaar posted a response on the Black Ops 4 subreddit writing, "At the time this interview was conducted, which was previous to shipping the game, that's precisely and exactly how it worked. If I went back in time and re-did this interview, I'd have to answer it the exact same way."

Vonderhaar calls the situation a "chicken and egg problem" saying that while he can speak with confidence on plans that Treyarch has executed on, plans can change. Vonderhaar says that's "doubly true with the business side of things which [I] have little insight into and even less control over."

Activision, Treyarch's parent company, recently revealed in its Q3 financial review that Black Ops 4's performance did not meet expectations. Activision used the same call to announce hundreds of layoffs despite record profits.

Operation Grand Heist's introduction of loot boxes has been met with animosity, not only for locking new characters inside them, but because they can't be earned in-game, only through purchases. The loot boxes also don't protect players from duplicate items.

Operation Grand Heist is only available on PS4 but will be released on Xbox One and PC next week. You can read our Black Ops 4 guides for our complete coverage.

Thanks, PC Gamer

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Matt Kim

News Editor

Matt Kim is a former freelance writer who's covered video games and digital media. He likes video games as spectacle and is easily distracted by bright lights or clever bits of dialogue. He also once wrote about personal finance, but that's neither here nor there.

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