Brands benefit from communicating directly with customers, but it’s a two-way street.
Electronic Arts reps may have thought they were doing the right thing by responding to the massive backlash around one of its latest games, “Star Wars Battlefront II.” The product, which retails for around $60 for most major gaming platforms, relies on microtransactions to unlock certain characters and features in the game.
The microtransaction is nothing new for gamers, but is a common target for animus in the community. Critics argue “loot boxes” or in-game purchases can disrupt the community dynamic within the game.
However all this shakes out once the game is actually available, Battlefront II‘s loot box system is a perfect storm of controversy. Rightly or wrongly, the perception is as follows: the game requires dozens of hours of tedious drudgery to access the iconic Star Wars characters and their powerful abilities, while EA is encouraging players to pay money to essentially skip this process. Is the company just being nakedly hostile and money-grabbing?