Gree and DeNA phasing out "complete gacha" due to regulatory threat
As the Japanese government steps in to bring the hammer down, Gree and DeNA look to address concerns
Gree and DeNA are making changes to some of their titles in order to prevent an impending crackdown by Japan's Consumer Affairs Agency. As previously reported, the government watchdog group has received a number of complaints over the "complete gacha" game mechanic, which uses a complex lottery-roll system in order to unlock virtual items. Both companies' stocks have plunged more than 22 percent following the announcement of possible regulation and they have decided on a number of initiatives in response.
According to Gamasutra, Gree is creating an internal "User Environment Improvement Committee" to "discuss and plan measures for improving services" and promote the "proper use of social games." Gree is also working with five other social networking operators to establish guidelines on how they handle social games, as part of a Social Game Platform Contact Conference.
"We want to make our game environment as worry-free as possible to ensure the greatest number of users," Gree CEO Yoshikazu Tanaka told the Wall Street Journal.
DeNA told reporters that it would halt games using the "complete gacha" mechanic after a scheduled financial earnings report. According to Reuters, DeNA CEO Isao Moriyasu expressed concerns that the company could keep positive growth with the upcoming change.
"We do not know if we can maintain the growth that we have enjoyed to this point (without these games)," said Moriyasu. "From here on, we need to properly devise products that are acceptable to society that can also maintain growth."