Epic Games CEO Urges Gaming Industry To Scrap Loot Boxes

Joanna Estrada
February 17, 2020

That nuance wasn't exactly clear during the DICE keynote, as the response to Sweeney's original comments has shown.

However probably the most contentious points Sweeney touched on have been his feedback that "we should always get the advertising departments out of politics", he mentioned.

"After 5.5 great years at Nike, I have made a decision to move on to my next opportunity as president of Epic Games", Sussman wrote on LinkedIn. Decrying the state of the world via the Chick-Fil-A LGBT controversy, Sweeney said that "there's no reason to drag divisive topics like that into gaming". If Sweeney really wants to get politics out of games, maybe he should start by cleaning house - and consider addressing his estimated $7 billion net worth, too.

Sweeney says on Twitter that "I just don't feel it's appropriate for one person, like a company CEO, to draw their company and its employees into their personal politics outside of the company's mission". And that recreation platforms themselves must be "working as impartial venues for leisure and workers, clients - all people else can maintain their very own views and never be judged by us for that". Right now our political orientations determine which fast-food chicken restaurant you go to. "There's no motive to pull divisive matters like that into gaming".

A platform, however, can't be neutral, as convenient for its stakeholders as that would be. Where Fortnite gets its dances is political; what franchises and musicians it partners with is political.

Fortnite is a free-to-play game, but it has been monetized by in-play items that do not have an effect on the outcome of a match, such as weapons and player skins. "And they may differ from management's or each other's or whatever". But it's Fortnite's success that has reinforced Sweeney's stature within the games industry, so when he talks about the market, people listen.

Nevertheless, no matter how open the platform, what to include in it surely seems to carry some political message. Epic Games will never implement any pay-to-win mechanisms while Sweeney is CEO, with the boss saying the company and its developers have a responsibility to its player base.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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