EA “can’t afford” another loot box controversy with Anthem or the next Battlefield

Whether that means no loot boxes or cosmetic loot boxes or loot boxes that aren’t loot boxes because they’re loot bubbles instead and it’s totally different, EA is not going to have a repeat of the Star Wars Battlefront 2 Dramapocalypse of 2017.

Talking to The Verge, EA exec Patrick Söderlund explains that the company has learned its lesson. Besides the complete revamp of Battlefront 2’s questionable microtransaction system, future games will also be subject to a more discerning design process in response.

“I’d be lying to you if I said that what’s happened with Battlefront and what’s happened with everything surrounding loot boxes and these things haven’t had an effect on EA as a company and an effect on us as management. We can shy away from it and pretend like it didn’t happen, or we can act responsibly and realise that we made some mistakes, and try to rectify those mistakes and learn from them,” he says.

“We have taken significant steps as a company to review and understand the mechanics around monetisation, loot boxes, and other things in our games before they go to market. For games that come next, for Battlefield or for Anthem, [players have] made it very clear that we can’t afford to make similar mistakes. And we won’t.”

Published by EA, Hazelight’s recent co-op prison bust-’em-out A Way Out requires only one copy of the game between two people, so I think that’s an auspicious start.