OpenCritic Says They Are Going to Take a Stand Against Loot Boxes

By Mark Delaney, 11 months ago
OpenCritic, the much younger review aggregating competitor to Metacritic, has announced via Twitter that they are going to "take a stand" against loot boxes and other in-game paid content the likes of which are seen throughout the current gaming landscape.

The aggregator was born out of the belief that their competitor gets some things wrong, namely its weighing some review outlets' scores more than others. They also include reviews without numerical scores and allow users to customize their own aggregated scores using only the reviews from sources users want to read. Now they hope to be at the forefront of the debate surrounding the in-game pricing models that often resemble pulling a slot machine. They've asked for suggestions from interested community members and have detailed some initial ideas of how they may choose to track the plethora and range of paid in-game material.

The debate has reached a fever pitch this week as even a single-player game such as today's Middle-earth: Shadow of War contains in-game loot. This comes after seemingly all popular multiplayer games, from Rocket League to Battlefield 1 to perhaps most famously Overwatch, have begun to offer these chance-based loot boxes, and in some cases other paid content like cosmetics.

Several of Rocket League's battle-cars are exclusive to crates that can only be opened with purchased keys.Several of Rocket League's battle-cars are exclusive to crates that can only be opened with purchased keys.

Despite it being such a hot topic right now, we still appear to be in the early days of this discussion and the content model likely isn't going away anytime soon. As their name and tweets suggest, the aggregator is open to suggestions.
Mark Delaney
Written by Mark Delaney
Mark is a Boston native now living in Portland, Oregon. He's the Editorial Manager on TA, loves story-first games, and is one of three voices on the TA Playlist podcast. Outside of games he likes biking, sci-fi, the NFL, and spending time with his fiancée and son. He almost never writes in the third person.