Great article! Really disappointing for me because there’s this huge void of fun racing games in my heart right now. The NFS (2015) title said and tried all of the right things, but I found the driving was very unengaging and the police chases to be so short that they were impossible to enjoy. I was hopeful that this game would improve on that front. Unfortunately, the progression mechanics in Payback look to be too large of a hurdle for me to look past. Far from anger though, it just makes me sad.
On a larger view of how MTX affect a game’s economy, there are larger discussions that we need to have. Are lootboxes predatory on those with addictive personalities/gambling tendencies? Are they purely an attempt to siphon cash out of gamers or is there an issue with the price point of games that lootboxes is trying to bridge?
There’s a lot to talk about. I find it rare that a lootbox improves my experience in a game. However, I also see an issue where inflation causes the cost game development to rise and the seeming inability of the price of video games to rise with it. Would an $80 game prevent lootboxes from being implemented? Maybe, but I can certainly see a world where the prices go up and lootboxes remain.