Survey suggests loot boxes are here to stay

Survey suggests loot boxes are here to stay

According to the latest annual survey from the Game Developers Conference, now that the Switch is a proven hit, more developers are interested this year in creating games for Nintendo's tablet. Having polled almost 4,000 game developers, the GDC learned that 12% of them are now developing games for the Switch. In terms of the preference of the developers, Switch placed in the third place with 36%, below PC with 59% and PS4 with 39%. As long as gamers are clamoring for Switch games, developers will continue to flock to the console, as we saw in 2017. And, for the first time, there is a rise - from 25% to 29% - in developers saying they don't see VR/AR as a sustainable business.

Only 1 percent of respondents are now developing games for Nintendo 3DS, and, somewhat interestingly, another percent are working on games for Wii U. And while there's a slight increase in the number of developers now working on mobile games - 36 per cent - that number dips back down to 32 per cent when asked on which platform they expect their next game to release.

PC is the most popular platform for developers, and its lead is expanding - 50% said their last game was released on PC, compared to 45% who said the same previous year. When asked about the loot boxes, a lot responded with caution: "It's only acceptable when it is vanity cosmetic items", one respondent wrote.

It's worth noting that the report's results are a little more bullish for VR's sister in immersive technology, augmented reality. Registration is now open for the 2018 Game Developers Conference, which will be held at the Moscone Center in San Francisco between March 19-23.

11% of those developers are working on a game featuring some kind of loot box system, or "paid item crates" as indicated on the survey.

In another interesting tidbit, only 1 in 10 devs said they were working on a game that includes paid loot boxes.