Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony to Disclose Loot Box Odds by 2020

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According to the Entertainment Software Association, Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony will require new and updated games that feature loot boxes to reveal the odds of receiving specific items by 2020.

Michael Warnecke unveiled the news at an FTC panel on loot boxes that took place in Washington, DC on Aug. 7.

"That said, we are doing more," Warnecke said. "I'm pleased to announce this morning that Microsoft, Nintendo, and Sony have indicated to ESA a commitment to new platform policies with respect to the use of paid loot boxes in games that are developed for their platform. Specifically, this would apply to new games and game updates that add loot box features. And it would require the disclosure of the relative rarity or probabilities of obtaining randomized virtual items in games that are available on their platforms," he continued.

"As well, many of the leading video game publishers of the Entertainment Software Association have decided that they are going to implement a similar approach at the publisher level to provide consumers this information and give them enhanced information to make purchase decisions."

The three titans aren't the only ones working toward this initiative. Activision Blizzard, Bandai Namco Entertainment, Bethesda, Bungie, Electronic Arts, Take-Two Interactive, Ubisoft, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and Wizards of the Coast  are also working on greater transparency for in-game purchases.

Some notable developers that haven't made the commitment are developers such as 505 Games, Capcom, CI Games, Deep Silver, Disney Interactive Studios, Epic Games, Focus Home Interactive, Gearbox Publishing, GungHo, Intellivision Entertainment, Kalypso, Konami, Magic Leap, NCsoft, Natsume, Nexon, Rebellion, Riot Games, Sega, Square Enix, THQ Nordic, Tencent and Marvelous.

While it'll be interesting to see how this affects loot box-heavy games like Overwatch and FIFA, it's still unclear when exactly this initiative will take effect next year.