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UPDATE: Belgian Minister Wants EU Ban on Loot Boxes, Speaks Before Committee Ruling

UPDATE: 

In our original story, it was said that the Belgian Gaming Commission had ruled that loot boxes such as those found in Star Wars: Battlefront II and Overwatch are considered a form of gambling. However, the story has been updated that the committee has not issued a final ruling, though they are investigating. It appears a Belgian Justice Minister spoke ahead of the ruling stating that he wished to see loot boxes banned altogether in the EU.

According to Gamespot:

A report linked by the site acknowledges in its conclusion both the spread of loot boxes in videogames, and the difficulty in regulating them using current laws. As always, online translation is rough, but the report indicates that game operators can be "aggressive" with in-game sales and often target "young people." It also calls for "closer cooperation between governments, software developers, and rating agencies," and says that "with the right rules and consistent enforcement," it should be possible to "protect players from the harmful effects of gambling without compromising" the games themselves."

ORIGINAL STORY:

Belgium's Gaming Commission has concluded its investigation into loot boxes in games including Star Wars: Battlefront II and Overwatch. The committee reached consensus that loot boxes are indeed a form of gambling. As a result, the Belgian government will seek to have them banned throughout the European Union.

"The mixing of money and addiction is gambling. Mixing gambling and gaming, especially at a young age, is dangerous for the mental health of a child."

From all reports the Belgians are hoping to ban all forms of in-game purchases straight up. However, this is not an immediate cessation of loot boxes in Europe as it will take time to get a consensus among all of the represented nations.

You can read more of the report via Google Translate of Belgian site VTM.be. As PCGamer says, it's "a little bit sloppy, as usual, but the message is clear enough."

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Suzie Ford / Suzie is the Associate Editor and News Manager at MMORPG.com. Follow her on Twitter @MMORPGMom

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