Sections

 Get your job in front of the right talentSearch our CV libraryUtilise the global reach of Gamesindustry.biz

Nexon and Netmarble fined for loot box practices

Korean FTC hands out almost $1 million in fines, the majority to Nexon

Nexon, Netmarble and NextFloor have been fined by the Korean Fair Trade Commission for misleading their customers with in-game loot boxes.

According to a report in The Korea Herald, the total value of the penalties and fines was ₩1 billion ($940,000). However, the overwhelming majority of that was meted out to Nexon, which had to pay ₩944.5 million ($888,000), compared to Netmarble's total of ₩60 million ($56,000).

The FTC said that the "Celebrity Count" event in Nexon's Sudden Attack was an example of deceptive practices. In that case, loot boxes were sold to consumers in order to collect 16 puzzle pieces, with each box yielding two pieces in total.

According to the FTC, Nexon promoted the boxes as giving out pieces at random, but the chance of getting some of the pieces was just 0.5 per cent. A single consumer spent ₩460,000 trying to obtain all 16.

Nexon responded to the FTC with the following statement: "In our puzzle event, we used the phrase 'random provision' to suggest the items would be provided at random, and that the odds of obtaining each puzzle piece were different. However, the FTC interpreted the phrase as suggesting equal odds. We plan to work on obtaining an additional review of this issue in the future."

The FTC also found fault with practices in Nexon's Counter Strike Online 2, and Netmarble's Ma9, Monster Taming and Everybody's Marble. Netmarble has issued an apology to the users involved, but would not comment on any plans to challenge the FTC's ruling.

 Get your job in front of the right talentSearch our CV libraryUtilise the global reach of Gamesindustry.biz

More stories

Nexon Q1 revenue up 7%, but warns of near-term challenges

MapleStory publisher says near-term results could be impacted by end of pandemic, decision to reveal loot box probabilities

By Jeffrey Rousseau

Nexon invests $874m in Bandai Namco, Konami, Sega and Hasbro

More investments to come as part of $1.5 billion initiative to support "overlooked and undervalued" entertainment firms

By James Batchelor

Latest comments

Sign in to contribute

Need an account? Register now.