Diablo Immortal - Stay awhile and pay on your mobile

They will never do that. Too much money on the table, they won’t willingly walk away. Self-regulation will not happen.

Warning labels on cigarettes are ineffective. Even the FDA admitted it.

So are max spending laws, in politics, anyway. :(

It’d probably be easier to just ban all IAP that don’t meet a strict definition of an expansion pack. Even then, you’ll probably end up with games that give you guaranteed randomly generated new skins and weapons you don’t care about along with that random gem pull…

Do other hobbies cap what you can spend per month? Golf? Basketball? Knitting? D&D? Collectible cards? Skiing? Why should games be different?

I believe in having strong parental controls/consent for spending for kids. But for adults? Let them spend what they want to enjoy the hobbies they enjoy.

PS - I also agree that the odds for getting stuff from random boxes should be listed in very obvious places. This is, of course, different than what is required for real-world things like collectible cards.

We fundamentally disagree on that. No videogame can deliver $500 of value in a month. Regulation is the only way to stop this train.

That’s a very judgy statement. You have no idea what people value. You know what you value, of course, but you can’t possibly have enough knowledge of the global population to make that sort of statement.

There are plenty of tales of rich people bankrolling wars in EVE Online. They obviously get value out of it - nobody is forcing them to spend thousands/tens of thousands of dollars.

It’d be like me saying that nobody could possibly spend more than $500 a month on golf, because I don’t really play golf. But I’m sure there are people who spend way, way more on their golf hobby than that.

There’s a critical difference between spending money on a chance to obtain a golf club and always obtaining a golf club when you pay X dollars. Predictable rewards don’t build Pavlovian conditioning and addiction the way randomized rewards do. It’s not how much money you spend, it’s how the system abuses human psychology to take your money.

Stusser is saying that the amount spent on a digital good does matter, not just whether it’s randomly earned. At least I read it that way.

The psychological effects are fair to discuss, but hasn’t this mechanic existed since cereal companies started putting toys in boxes? Same for baseball card packs.

Why is this different? Or would you suggest that these real-world precursors should also be regulated?

I’m mostly sharing this for the second panel, but I agree with the sentiment!

I can engineer random rewards specifically for you to maximize your purchases. Can’t do that with cereal boxes where there’s no idea who receives it. This sort of predation is screaming out for machine learning. Your money being extracted is what’s optimized. The two things are still similar, but I’d argue that degree of manipulation matters.

Also, when you take a chance on getting a prize with a cereal box, at least you get the freaking cereal.

I have no idea if putting a cap on spending makes real sense, but I find the whole manipulative aspect abhorrent.

That should not be permitted, because there’s no way to protect poor people while still allowing the rich to swing their massive dicks around. So, unfortunately, the rich will need to suffer. Boo hoo.

This sounds like a huge step-- because it is. Telling adults they can’t spend their money as they please, that’s a big leap, right? Thing is, we aren’t at the pinnacle of predatory monetization. We’re still in the bottom of the hockey stick. It can, and will, get much worse unless either a) people reject it or b) regulation.

Are people gonna reject it? Seems not.

That will lead to a great deal of human misery1 as people spend money they don’t have on worthless digital bullshit. That’s the problem NFTs were supposed to fix, but the market did reject them, and they weren’t necessary anyway as each studio could allow digital assets to be resold on the secondary market, they just chose not to because $.

1: I feel bad for mentioning this in the same breath as poor people getting ripped off, but it also means shittier games, and that impacts me.

Probably not, yeah. One can dream though.

I was gamer-shamed out of playing this any more (which is a lie, I was mostly done with the hand holding as it was boring and simplistic) but I’m still a little amazed at the depth or height of the negative reaction, is it because D2 and D3 led to such a massive endgame perseverance that the endgame is the game in D:I? See also: I don’t really understand how people are still playing WoW these days 25 years later, is Blizzard the secret CIA crack cabal we imagined?

Well, if you enjoy DI and p2w, you are in the fine company of one Ted Cruz. 😀

And now we have to have a duel sir. Only death will satisfy, state your weapon, I shall pick the venue.

If this is still on the table, I’d like to get in on it as well, thanks!

Aren’t you guys a bit old for a 16 year old girlfriend?

I’m sure you’re tough as Texas!

D3 still holds up really well. With the seasons, adventure mode, rifts, and gameplay that is hyper-refined to jewel-like excellence you can forget that you’ve seen every monster, every tile set, every effect, (nearly) every item a billion times.

Yeah, for all its issues at launch, Diablo 3 is just perfectly honed ARPG comfort food now. It doesn’t push any envelopes or try to go too crazy with its systems. Just big numbers and a tight gameplay loop that you can lose yourself in for hours. I remain hopeful that in developing D4, Blizzard is learning lessons from the current state of Diablo 3 and not Immortal.