One of last year's bigger controversies in the video game world was the inclusion of loot box systems in particular titles, like Star Wars: Battlefront II, Need For Speed Payback and Middle-Earth: Shadow of War. But one analyst believes that Electronic Arts may have learned its lesson when it comes to how loot boxes will be used in future games.
Anthem, a title that was introduced last year as BioWare's latest project, is easily one of this year's most anticipated titles, but there are some fans that are already shooting it down because they're worried it will suffer from "loot box syndrome," as it were. However, Michael Pachter, an analyst for Wedbush Securities, believes that the company isn't about to go down that route again. It will have loot, but more on the cosmetic level, and not so much on stuff that will affect gameplay.
"So the question for Anthem is, will EA screw it up like with Star Wars?" Pachter noted in his latest report. "Or will they follow the Overwatch and Destiny roadmap, where the actual game is fun to play and the payments are ancillary? Because where they got into trouble with Star Wars was in making it pay to win. Had they limited themselves to purely cosmetic items, I don't think anyone would have said anything. So Anthem has the potential to be Destiny like in terms of game experience, and Overwatch like in terms of microtransactions offered, where it's all cosmetic and no one bats an eye."
He noted, however, "I think right now EA is on probation with gamers. I think everyone is watching everything they do. I don't think they can afford to put an onerous microtransaction scheme in any game going forward, they need to re-earn gamers' trust again. So I hope they are sobered by this experience, and learn from it. But I think they are smart people, so I am sure they will do the right thing going forward. We'll see."
That's not to say EA has confirmed that gameplan, but it sounds like it's going to make perfect sense. Fingers crossed that it happens.