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Republican Senator Josh Howley has proposed a ban on loot boxes and pay-to-win microtransactions in titles for minors, claiming they are preying on user addiction and exploiting children.
The Chinese government has restricted the number of loot boxes players can open each day and the government of Belgium said they were in violation of its gambling laws, according to BBC.
Numerous countries including Australia, Denmark, Germany, and the UK had determined that loot boxes had nothing to do with gambling.
On the other side of the spectrum, there's a chance loot boxes will be ruled illegal in the US in titles popular with minors.
Republican Senator Howley said of his proposed Protecting Children from Abusive Games Bill:
As a prime example, Howley singled out King's Candy Crush, where players can purchase a $149 bundle that comes with 1,000 units of its in-game currency.
The problem, however, does not only affect Candy Crush. The issue of loot boxes first came into light with Battlefront 2. Currently, a large portion of popular games, including Overwatch, PUBG, and Rocket League, all encourage microtransactions.
The bill first needs to pass the Senate and the House of Representatives, before potentially becoming a law, says Gamespot.
Protecting Children from Abusive Games Bill
The amazing art of Blizzard games we all know and love is getting the fine art treatment, as Dutch online art dealership Cook and Becker has added three Blizzard franchises to their growing videogame collection. Said collection already consists of over 60 titles including Bloodborne, Cyberpunk 2077, Dark Souls, Dragon Age, Fallout, Uncharted and many more.
World of Warcraft already has a collection available and Diablo and StarCraft will be following soon:
About Cook and Becker:
So, for those fine art collectors among you, you may want to look in to one of these, but they will set you back a bit, with all of the pieces going for $100+.
Results for the Q1 2019 Activison Blizzard Earnings Call are here and Blizzard is down to 32 million monthly active users (MAUs), since Q4 2018 when they announced layoffs and got rid of 8% of their non-development employees.
Activision Blizzard Activision Blizzard delivered approximately $800 million of in-game net bookings in Q1 2019. For each of Activision, Blizzard and King, daily time spent per user playing their games increased Y/Y. For Activision Blizzard overall, average daily time spent per user was approximately 50 minutes. Blizzard Blizzard had 32 million MAUs in this quarter (down from 35 million MAUs in Q4 2018 and 37 million MAUs in Q3 2018). Segment revenues were in-line with expectations. ($344million) Segement operating margin of 16% ($55 million) was lower Y/Y due to decline in segment in-game revenues, partially offset by lower costs. Overwatch League The second season of the Overwatch League commenced in February to sell-out crownds at the Blizzard Arena. Viewership hours are over 30% higher than in the first season. Dallas Fuel hosted the league's first home games in front of a sell-out crown of thousands of fans. They have four key areas of focus include which include: Major Content Releases: "We are focused on delivering a strong cadence of major content releases, where we meet the growing demand of the industry's gaming communities and release our high-quality content more frequently." Live Operations: "We continue to grow our live operations capabilities, to deliver great content, services, features, and events that continuously engage our communities and drive in-game revenues." Franchise Expansion onto Mobile: "We are building on our existing mobile leadership as we extend our acclaimed console and PC franchises to the largest and fastest-growing gaming platform." New Engagement Models: "We are expanding the reach, engagement and our monetization of our francihses as we build on early success in esports, in-game advertising, and consumer initiatives." Presentation
Blizzard won't be attending Gamescom in Cologne this year to focus on game development. Attendees will still be able to buy Blizzard gear in the shop area and the company is looking forward to returning to the event in the future.
As part of a renewed effort this year to maintain our focus on development, for our current games and our future projects, we won’t have a booth at gamescom 2019. The show is an important one for the European and global gaming community, and we’re going to miss meeting players in Cologne this year. You’ll still be able to find Blizzard gear in the gamescom 2019 shop area, and we’re looking forward to returning to the gamescom show floor in the future. We’re also looking forward to sharing more details about the projects we’re currently working on when the time is right.
Kevin "Cloaken" Johnson announced on Twitter a few days ago that he is leaving the company. The voice of Heroes of the Storm was narrating Hero spotlights before the changes to the game and got later transferred to work on a different game within the company earlier this year.
We wish him success in his future endeavors!
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