Fortnite removes ‘blind loot boxes’ amid fears they encourage young gamblers

Fortnite removes 'blind loot boxes' amid fears they encourage young gamblers

Fortnite creator Epic Games has said that players will be able to see what’s inside the hit video game’s ‘loot box llamas’ before they buy them.

Many video games use the loot boxes, which usually sees players paying for a digital package filled with a ‘blind’ selection of in-game items.

But the practice has come under severe scrutiny in the past few years due to fears it encourages underage gambling.

The UK Gambling Commission has previously said that while loot boxes are not illegal in this country, the mechanic ‘blurs the lines’ between video games and gambling.

The practice is banned in Belgium, while 15 European regulators and the US Federal Trade Commission have pledged to investigate the risks of the practice.

Fortnite previously used blind loot boxes in its ‘Save the World’ mode called V-Buck Llamas; brightly coloured pinatas that could be cracked open to find a random selection of in-game goodies.

The llamas could be earned through gameplay or paid for with real money by purchasing ‘V-Bucks’, the in-game currency. The llamas vary in price, while 1000 V-Bucks costs £7.99.

Now, however, Epic has said the system will be replaced by X-Ray llamas. The ‘loot boxes’ still offer up random items, but players are now able to see exactly what they contain before they buy, meaning they can wait until the daily refresh to see if the next batch of llamas are more appealing.

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