Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Loot Boxes Cause Controversy

By Rebecca Smith, 1 month ago
Operation Grand Heist is due to hit Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 next week. The content hit PlayStation 4 this week, and some aspects of it are already causing disconcertion amongst players. One of the things added in the new Season is Cases, which are the game's equivalent of loot boxes, and the problem is that some aspects of the game are now being locked behind them.

Operation Grand Heist

When the game was released, it didn't have Supply Drops. With the start of Operation Grand Heist, these have made a return. Certain items, like weapons and characters, can be earned at certain points in the new Black Market Operation — these are known as Blackjack’s Reserves. These items are also available in Cases, which can be earned through playing Multiplayer or Blackout, as well as being purchasable for a premium. The problem is that once players hit Tier 100 in the Battle Pass, they are prevented from earning any more items through the Tier System. Cases are still available through gameplay, although players are reporting it takes around 2-3 hours to earn a single Case. Of course, players can also buy them at a cost of three Cases for 200 Call of Duty Points (£1.99 or regional equivalent) if there's content they want that they still haven't unlocked.

The other bone of contention is that there's no duplicate protection like there is in games like Apex Legends. For every third duplicate item, players can re-roll to swap it for something else, but they're still stuck with the first two duplicates.

During the game's development, Treyarch studio design director David Vonderhaar stated in a Game Informer interview that all Blackout characters would be unlockable through gameplay. Since the game's release, that has changed. Some characters are only available through the Cases, while others are attached to the Season Pass. Now Vonderhaar has stated in an interview with VG247 that the change in direction wasn't necessarily through developer choice:

Things change along the way … and not all of them are design decisions. I can tell you what we have done and what we plan on doing, but things change that I can not predict or I didn’t know about. Doubly true with the business side of things which have little insight into and even less control over.
The Call of Duty games are no stranger to trying to monetise content, and neither is publisher Activision. Vonderhaar's comment seems to hint that the decision to add Cases was from the publisher rather than something wanted by the development team. Either way, players aren't happy, and it remains to be seen if anything will change in the future.

We've got the full list of Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 achievements - check the list for guides to unlocking them.

This game was featured in our Best Xbox One Battle Royale Games Available in 2019 article. Why not check it out to see what else made the cut?
Rebecca Smith
Written by Rebecca Smith
Rebecca is the Newshound Manager at TrueGaming Network. She has been contributing articles since 2010, especially those that involve intimidatingly long lists. When not writing news, she works in an independent game shop so that she can spend all day talking about games too. She'll occasionally go outside.