Maxroll, a fansite and online resource for games like Diablo III and Lost Ark, is shutting down the branch of its site that focuses on Diablo Immortal, citing concerns with its monetization scheme.
Diablo Immortal has been an extremely controversial game, to put it lightly. Ever since the game came out, players have questioned the extreme measure the game goes to get you to spend money on it. The game also isn’t available in the Netherlands and Belgium because of their laws regarding loot boxes.
The writers and editors at Maxroll cited the economic structure of the game as the biggest reason why they are discontinuing the branch of their site that covers Diablo Immortal. They said that even if most players weren’t vulnerable to the tactics used in Diablo Immortal to get people to impulsively spend, continuing to support a game that they feel is predatory was against their core values as a site.
“Canceling a game we've cumulatively put 10,000+ hours of work (and a ton of developer money) into is not something we do lightly. In fact, we've never discontinued a game before,” they wrote in a blog post explaining their decision. “Even with a poor reception, our Immortal Branch would continue to generate revenue on our end. Life is about more than money though, it’s about doing the right thing.”
As Waypoint recently reported, Diablo Immortal’s monetization schemes can be particularly predatory for people with gambling addictions, which Maxroll gave as the first reason for why it will no longer support the game.
“The predatory Pay-To-Win system greatly exceeds what's considered the norm for mobile gaming. Gambling addictions are real and can completely destroy lives,” the site wrote. “Even if 99% of players have perfect impulse control, we still can't stomach what happens to the other 1%. This is completely against our values and we will not remain a part of this any longer.”
Waypoint reached out to Maxroll for comment but they did not respond in time for publication.
The post goes on to explain that on top of the monetization scheme of the game, the lackluster reaction from the community towards the game impacted their decision.
“The disappointment we felt at launch aligns with the community's. Not just from the [pay to win] perspective, but about the game itself” they wrote. “While we are not game designers, we can't believe this is the state of the game after nearly 2 years of testing and feedback.”