EA Sports Is Reportedly Getting Sued Over FIFA 21
EA Sports have reportedly been hit with a lawsuit over FIFA 21's use of 'loot boxes' which violate Californian consumer protection laws.
Allegedly filed by Jason Zajnoc, Danyael Williams, and Pranko Lozano, the lawsuit has been filed with the hypothesis that EA Sports has deliberately increased the difficulty of Ultimate Team in order to increase revenue from FIFA Points that can be gambled on a variety of "packs".
Ultimate Team is FIFA's online immersive game mode where players will build their own teams through purchasing them with in-game currency on a worldwide marketplace. The in-game currency can be earnt by trading players and playing games, with the rarer players costing much more.
The game mode has been EA's moneymaker since it was first brought to our screens in 2013, as players can spend large sums on microtransactions which will present the player with ways of creating in-game revenue through the acquisition of random players through their packs. The points can also be used to enter a "Draft", which reaps similar rewards.
According to the lawsuit, EA Sports uses Dynamic Difficulty Adjustment and Adaptive Difficulty (both referred to as artificial intelligence technologies) to influence the outcome of a game and determine the results of a game to keep players engaged, similar to the use of skill-based matchmaking in other titles. The practice is also known as "scripting" in FIFA. Yes, it's not a myth.
The suit then infers that EAs scripting is a scheme to trick players into spending more money on packs due to the placebo that an improved team will grant the user better results. It's plaintiff's main charge is that the developers choose not to be transparent regarding scripting in an effort to make money.
With the company making a record $1.1billion from microtransactions across all of its titles in just one quarter of a year, it may not come as a surprise that EA has faced backlash.
Image via EA Sports