Whether loot boxes amount to gambling has been an ongoing issue for a few years. However, an Australian legislator looks to nip the issue in the bud with what could be the strictest legislation we’ve seen to date.
Andrew Wilkie, a member of Parliament (MP) in Australia from Tasmania, is set to introduce a bill to ban loot boxes for those under 18 years old, reported the Daily Telegraph. According to Wilkie, the bill would use the classification guidelines to prevent companies from targeting loot boxes to minors.
“We as a country accept that people over the age of 18 can gamble but let’s make that for adults and giving parents a warning,” said Wilkie.
In his statements, Wilkie said video games use loot box mechanics to groom children “for future gambling.” He also said games with loot boxes should have an R18+ rating. Because Australia’s rating board is a government agency, an R18+ cannot legally be sold to or purchased by minors.
Wilkie’s bill would also require a new notification for games featuring loot boxes to receive an advisory as part of its rating. Some advisory examples in use today include coarse language, online interactivity, interactive drug use, and more.
The Classification Amendment (Loot Boxes) Bill will be introduced in mid-August. The bill’s text has not been made public yet.