CD Projekt RED - On Loot Box Controversy

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@PCGamer CD Projekt RED have responded to the loot box controversy.

In November, CD Projekt Red CEO Adam Kiciński proposed its long-awaited Cyberpunk 2077 will include online elements to ensure its long-term success. With this in mind, I ask the developer's co-founder Marcin Iwiński where he and his team stand with loot boxes—suggesting the controversial mechanic has dominated the conversation around single-versus-multiplayer games in the last 12 months.



"'Conversation' sounds way too nice to describe what was happening last year. I would rather call it community backlash," says Iwiński . "And this time around, it wasn’t just the hardcore community, there were a lot of really pissed off gamers out there and they decided to speak up. Where we stand is quite simple and you could see it with all of our past releases—most recently The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and GWENT. If you buy a full priced game, you should get a big, polished piece of content, which gives you many, many hours of fun gameplay.

[...]
More information.
 

joxer

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Breezed throught the article and I don't see actual lootboxes comment. I wasn't looking hard enough? Or it's just a clickbait tile but this time with nice content to read?

Iwinski said it should be either fulpriced_game+huge_expansions+freebie_horsearmors or pay2win_game+nonscamming_DLC.
:thumbup:
 
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SSIGuy

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Hmmm... this read a bit like a politician answering a question. He definitely said all the right things about how they see gaming and paying for it - but he did stop short of literally addressing the question by outright saying no to loot boxes.

Anyway, that's probably just the cynic in me... certainly CD Projekt Red have earned the benefit of the doubt on all issues like this so far.
 

Darkheart

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@SSIGuy;
My thoughts exactly! They haven't sinned yet, but lets wait and see how those multiplayer features will turn out once the game is ready.
 

Lucky Day

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I'm glad you are all seeing it the same why I am. The comments section is gushing without realizing he didn't actually commit to no lootboxes.

For that matter, has playing it solo offline ever been addressed? Or even Multiplayer LAN without internet?
 

TheMadGamer

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Hmmm… this read a bit like a politician answering a question. He definitely said all the right things about how they see gaming and paying for it - but he did stop short of literally addressing the question by outright saying no to loot boxes.

One thing is for certain, CD Projekt Red, by their actions, certainly have gone the opposite direction of EA and Ubisoft... the two reigning kings of ruining video gaming by their "lootbox" business models.

The fate of video gaming in this area truly does rest in the hands of gamers, which worries me. What needs to happen is individual gamers need to recognize what is going on and stop purchasing from businesses that embrace these kinds of business models.

But too often, gamers lust for a game will bring them to purchase something riddled with "lootboxness" even when they don't like the idea of it being there.

I saw the same thing happen in the early days of the internet, when PC developers really started to loosen up with quality control because "we'll just patch it later and distribute the patch on the internet." There was a lot of bitching about the big increase in the number of bugs showing up in PC games back then, but people kept pulling out their wallets and buying the games anyway, satisfying themselves, I guess, by ranting about the bugs on some forum. This has lead us to the "new normal" where people shell out $$$ to be free beta testers for games that even when they're officially released are still riddled with bugs.

I was at a Gamestop the day Star Wars Battlefront II came out and their was a line out the door everyone in line with a copy of the game in hand... even when it was widely known "loot boxes" were in. Get on metacritic and the game has a user score of 1.

Until gamers get it that the business world only responds to $$$, a lot of bad practices will continue. When you give anyone your money, and then complain about it afterward, you've already given up the vast majority of your power. You might think then that people wouldn't be a return customer, but gamers line up in droves again and again so it's no wonder that even though you have companies like CD Projekt Red who do not embrace these kinds of business models, companies that do (EA, Ubisoft) continue on the same track.
 

Watchtower

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I must not have been paying attention or something, but explain lootboxes to me.

Typically you spend either actual money or in-game "currency" which can usually (always these days) be acquired with actual money, on a "box". This box is essentially a virtual slot machine which will give you usually 1 of many possible results, some kind of virtual item or reward/s. The "lootbox" is basically consumed when used requiring the user pay each time they want to open one.

The reward could basically be anything you can imagine, a new skin/texture for a weapon, item, or character, or even a new character, or something like +50% damage, and so on.

Some people seem to think it is debatable as to whether this constitutes gambling and if it has the psychological effects of gambling.
 

SSIGuy

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One thing is for certain, CD Projekt Red, by their actions, certainly have gone the opposite direction of EA and Ubisoft… the two reigning kings of ruining video gaming by their "lootbox" business models.

The fate of video gaming in this area truly does rest in the hands of gamers, which worries me. What needs to happen is individual gamers need to recognize what is going on and stop purchasing from businesses that embrace these kinds of business models.

But too often, gamers lust for a game will bring them to purchase something riddled with "lootboxness" even when they don't like the idea of it being there.

...

Until gamers get it that the business world only responds to $$$, a lot of bad practices will continue. When you give anyone your money, and then complain about it afterward, you've already given up the vast majority of your power. You might think then that people wouldn't be a return customer, but gamers line up in droves again and again so it's no wonder that even though you have companies like CD Projekt Red who do not embrace these kinds of business models, companies that do (EA, Ubisoft) continue on the same track.

Too true but I find it interesting that it still happens so much. For me, there are so many good games out there these days - and my wishlist is so long - that it's pretty easy to ignore and not purchase those kind of games. Yet, you see tons of gamers do Day 1 purchases for lots of EA and Ubi titles, even when they're also complaining about aspects of them!
 

Cacheperl

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For EA and Ubisoft, gamers are the lootboxes.

Anyways, I agree that CD Projekt RED is a pretty decent company. But ... the Gwent game has lootboxes. Which is why I cringed when he mentioned it in the opening of the interview.
 

JDR13

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As long as lootboxes are completely optional and aren't advertised within the game itself, I don't see the issue.
 

SirJames

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As long as lootboxes are completely optional and aren't advertised within the game itself, I don't see the issue.

Some people have issues with gambling and spend too much and that's exactly what the sellers of loot boxes are hoping happens.
 

ChatMiauleur

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Hmmm… this read a bit like a politician answering a question. He definitely said all the right things about how they see gaming and paying for it - but he did stop short of literally addressing the question by outright saying no to loot boxes.

Anyway, that's probably just the cynic in me… certainly CD Projekt Red have earned the benefit of the doubt on all issues like this so far.

They haven't sinned and they have actually delivered everything they promised in the past for the games and the DRM: They own and operate GOG which is selling games without any DRM, and that includes their own games.
Why would they lie on this one, that would be a killing blow for them.
 
S

sakichop

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I think thier stance on lootboxes is clear. They wont have them in full price games but are more than fine having them in thier “free” p2w games.
 

Vitirr

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For EA and Ubisoft, gamers are the lootboxes.

Anyways, I agree that CD Projekt RED is a pretty decent company. But … the Gwent game has lootboxes. Which is why I cringed when he mentioned it in the opening of the interview.
Gwent is a free to play game which is completely a different story. You can't keep a free to play game if you don't monetize the content somehow, and even in this respect according to some more experienced players than myself in the collectable card games, this is a really fair game in comparison. Besides, you can totally play free and get a lot of content, though of course you need quite a commitment to the game if you want to have a full collection.

I'd also prefere a more traditional model but this is probably the only viable one if you want a game that is continuosly supported and alive, unless you want to be charged every month like a MMO game.
 
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