Article: Lawyer Tuomas Pelkonen takes on loot boxes and the law

Live at PGC Helsinki, the attorney describes how the use of loot boxes highlights a wider issue of compliance in gaming

As we go into the afternoon, attorney at Nordia Law, Tuomas Pelkonen gave his talk on “The legal risks around loot boxes” on the Global Trends track.

In addition to the legal day job, Pelkonen regularly competes in competitive esports including EA Sports’ NHL Game. “Being an attorney, economist and competitive esports player – placed among the top 32 best players in the EU in EA Sports’ NHL World Championship tournament in 2023 – provides a unique skill set to master the topic of my talk,” he explained.

What all the loot box fuss about?

Pelkonen highlighted how loot boxes are still an ongoing legal issue in key markets such as Europe and while the makers of FIFA have argued that being unable to trade their loot box prizes for anything of monetary value effectively removed any element of gambling, in actuality that only seems to encourage legislative scrutiny rather than discourage it.

Furthermore, the monetisation techniques prevalent or proposed for mobile today, such as gacha, microtransactions and even blue-sky ideas like the integration of NFTs, muddy the waters for what is and isn’t acceptable going forwards.

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