An American player has had enough of Electronic Arts’ Ultimate Team game modes’ loot boxes.
VGC got a hold of the court documents. The lawsuit has been filed in the Northern District of California, and the plaintiff is Kevin Ramirez, who represents a proposed class of over one hundred other individuals. The lawsuit specifically cites California’s gambling laws as proof that Electronic Arts’ games, such as FIFA and Madden, should be governed by them.
Ramirez is calling for a jury trial, as well as damages of five million dollars. The case claims that Electronic Arts „relies on creating addictive behaviours in consumers to generate huge revenues.” Ramirez himself claims that Ultimate Team compelled him to spend money, having spent more than 600 dollars in both FIFA and Madden since 2011.
„EA’s Ultimate Team packs are loot boxes. Buying the packs are nothing more than a gambling bet. Purchased using real money, the Ultimate Team packs are simply wagering on completely randomised chances within the game to win valuable professional players and other items for the EA gamer’s virtual sports team,” the case reads.
And according to the lawsuit, this falls under California’s definition of an illegal gambling device. Here’s the definition: „a machine, aperture, or device; something of value is given to play; and the player may receive something of value by the element of chance.” And Ramirez is represented by the same law firm that filed a similar class-action lawsuit over loot boxes against Apple earlier this year.
However, even if he is right about this, there will likely be no result out of this. Electronic Arts gets a ton of money out of Ultimate Team (which you need to restart every year: the moment a new FIFA or Madden launches, it arrives with Ultimate Team, and you need to buy that game to start from zero), and the publisher won’t let go of this source of income that easily… and they can simply spend this cash on good lawyers.
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