How can someone play video games online
Online Games - The Risks
Skin game [betting] - what is it?
In some cases, these transactions (sometimes referred to as loot boxes) provide the opportunity to win an in-game item that is of varying value to the player. This can look similar to gambling as it is about luck which item the player receives. Also, some games like Rocket League have historically presented these items in a "fruit machine" style in order to win.
From the perspective of the Gambling Commission, this is not a game of chance as there is no monetary value for the items won outside of the game. If it was viewed as a game of chance, it could not be marketed to children.
This means that some countries, such as Belgium, have banned the use of “loot boxes” in games because they are seen as child-oriented gambling. However, there is no more general consensus. In the UK and US, games are now marked with in-app purchases as part of the rating system.
One important difference that many articles overlap is between online games and online video games. Online games usually refer to gambling websites where players can participate in traditional games of chance using cards, dice and slot machines. Online video games are the topic of this section. They play on consoles and PC to give players a challenge in terms of skill in a virtual world.
Children who want more in-game currency to buy boxes of loot are sometimes targeted but unofficial third-party apps that offer this in exchange for information. It is important for parents to understand, educate children, and ensure that their credit card details have appropriate passwords.
Malware risk with games that can be downloaded for free
To avoid intentionally downloading apps or free games that may be bundled with malware or spyware, it is important to:
- Review and research apps and games kids want to download
- Stick to legitimate websites when downloading games
- Explain the risks of downloading "free" games and what to do if something goes wrong
- Set online limits and agree which websites and apps are best for you
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