SWL: lockbox ennui

There’s a discussion surrounding lockboxes circulating again. Massively OP has a post decrying them, and I’m inclined to agree. I’m not rabidly against them, I play many MMOs that feature lockboxes of some kind; but I certainly (personally) see nothing positive in their inclusion in a game.

Just a sample of the many, many lockboxes in NW

Playing Secret World Legends recently the lockboxes are so common. We’re World of Warcraft players of old, so when a purple floating loot icon appears you immediately think “oh, wow, epic loot!”. But no, it’s just a loot box every time. /sadface

Bad colour choice is bad

We’re in Savage Coast now and loot in general seems a lot rarer than it used to be, there are a lot of randomised loot bags but almost no dropped loot anymore – except for lootboxes. It’s very reminiscent of Neverwinter in terms of loot boxes raining down on you. Oh and we’ve seen a second kind dropping most recently, perhaps because we changed zone or because of the upcoming Halloween event.

24 lootboxes already?

Lootboxes as an inventory management issue does irk me, if inventory space is limited or monetised in a game; showering loot crates of different sorts on the player is a good way to get me annoyed with that game. I wonder whether MMO developers have ways of tracking “negative-monetisation-effects” (design choices that dissuade players from playing more/longer)? Overloading my character with lootboxes will *not ever* encourage me to buy more inventory via real money transactions, I will just delete the boxes more regularly, or even immediately to free up space.

Clearly I’m not the target audience for lockboxes, I get no pleasure from the randomised loot therein because the appearance of the box isn’t tied to any particular effort. I’m not against randomised loot in general, I’m fine with the chests in DDOs dungeons for instance or the standard trope of random boss loot in dungeons (in WoW or similar). But hiding loot behind a paywall is a step too far for me personally. Lootboxes for me are at best an ignorable evil of current MMO-monetisation, I can’t see them as a positive feature or desirable loot delivery-mechanism.

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2 Responses to SWL: lockbox ennui

  1. Shintar says:

    There are no loot drops in SWL other than those boxes and the loots bags from the champion mobs. While I find the Cryptic-style, giant glowing boxes on the ground ridiculous (which is only enhanced by the complete absence of anything else), I’ve come to not mind them because they are effectively the game’s only vendor trash. And since they stack up to 99, they don’t take up much space while you wait to run into the next vendor. đŸ˜›

  2. bhagpuss says:

    So long as you can sell loot boxes to vendors I just think of them as trash loot the same as rusty swords or body parts. The visuals on the SWL ones are ludicrous though.

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