EA stops selling FIFA loot boxes in Belgium

Publisher will not pursue legal action following ‘gambling’ classification

EA has announced it will no longer sell FIFA points in Belgium, following the country’s decision to outlaw paid-for loot boxes.

In April 2018, the Belgian Gaming Commission found that loot boxes, such as those sold for real currency in FIFA’s Ultimate Team mode, constituted gambling. The Commission then went as far as recommending criminal prosecution against companies which continued to sell them in their games.

Following the ruling, several companies including Valve and Blizzard removed loot boxes from their games.

EA said that following the removal of loot boxes from FIFA games this month, players will still be able to earn in-game rewards through gameplay, but they will no longer be able to buy FIFA Points for real-world money.

In a statement, EA said that players with any existing FIFA Points in their accounts can continue to use them.

There’s currently no indication of how this decision will affect microtransactions present in other EA games.

“We seek to bring choice, fairness, value and fun to our players in all our games,” said the publisher. “In addition to providing players options in how they play, we include pack probabilities in our games for the transparency players want to make informed content choices.

“While we are taking this action, we do not agree with Belgian authorities’ interpretation of the law, and we will continue to seek more clarity on the matter as we go forward.”

“The impact of this change to FIFA Ultimate Team in Belgium is not material to our financial performance.”