Lawsuit Accuses Valve Of Profiting From ‘Illegal Online Gambling’

The issue of loot boxes and gambling in video games has never been far from the headlines over the past year or so.

Many countries across the globe conducted their own studies to decide whether or not loot boxes can be classed as gambling, with lots of countries outright banning them if deemed to be so.

Credit: Valve

It seems the issue of loot boxes isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, as a new lawsuit has been taken up against gaming giant, Valve.

Over in Washington, US, the Quinault Indian Nation is taking legal action against Valve, claiming that its loot boxes in Counter Strike: GO should have been regulated by the state’s gambling laws [via Geekwire].

The Nation has a contractual obligation with the State of Washington that means it has to “engage in responsible gaming, prevent fraud, prevent illegal gaming, and prevent underage gambling”.

Along with following the rules, The Nation has to pay 2% of its earnings in Impact Mitigation Funds, which help to fund support services in areas close to the casino.

Credit: Valve

The Quinault Indian Nation claims that Valve’s CS:GO skins constitute as gambling, and the company should have been adhering to the same rules as it has to adhere to.

The court documents state that “Valve facilitated illegal, unregulated and unlicensed online gambling” when it released skins for CS:GO, which were obtained by purchasing keys for crates from the in-game store.

Comparing the crates to slot machines, Quinault Nation allege that “the look, feel, sound and experience [of opening a crate] was basically an online slot machine.”

The Nation is suing the gaming giants for damages, and is also seeking the money Valve got through the ‘gambling transactions’.

“Valve had actual knowledge of the identity of the Valve accounts that gambling websites used to effectuate gambling transactions, and chose not to take any action against them,” say the court documents.

Credit: Valve

“Valve allowed gambling websites to use Valve accounts on Valve’s servers and Valve’s computers to effectuate gambling transactions…

“Valve also provided technical support to gambling websites and real-money cash out websites, despite those websites violating Valve’s Steam Subscriber Agreement, and would return control of gambling websites’ Valve accounts back to the gambling website after being hijacked or hacked by other third parties.”

Valve has yet to comment on the lawsuit.

Featured Image Credit: Valve