The folks at Valve have taken down the option to trade items for Dutch players on Steam after a threat of prosecution by local officials. The situation stems from the government declaring that loot boxes were a form of gambling back in April, and gave several companies warnings that it would seek criminal prosecution if they did not find a resolution that complied with their ruling and the government’s laws on gambling. Two months really isn’t enough time for a company like Valve to find a solution to such a widespread mechanic in gaming, so in response, they simply shut down trading to games like CS:GO and Dota 2.
Clearly, that’s not a long-term solution, especially if you’re a player in The Netherlands and you want to be able to play the game you paid for the same way everyone else in the world is. Valve did not immediately make a statement on the issue or offer any kind of alternative to fans in the country. As more European countries are looking into the matter on several games, it’s only a matter of time before companies will need to make a drastic change to their system to accommodate changing opinions being held up by law.