The plaintiffs alleged that EA was using its’Dynamic Difficulty Adjustment’ technologies to keep people buying loot boxes.

In November 2020, Electronics was hit with a class action lawsuit alleging that its patented Dynamic Difficulty Adjustment technology was being used in games such as FIFA Ultimate Team to push players into buying loot boxes. The plaintiffs claimed that the machine corrects participant stats behind the scenes to make them look poorer in the game than their listed abilities might suggest, which would nudge people into springing for player packs in hopes of finding someone better to add to their lineup.

“This really is a self-perpetuating cycle which rewards EA into the detriment of EA Sports players, since Difficulty Adjusting Mechanisms make gamers believe their teams are less proficient than they really are, leading them to buy extra Player Packs in hopes of getting better players and becoming more competitive,” the lawsuit claimed.

Today, however, EA announced that the litigation has been withdrawn, saying that the plaintiffs dismissed their claims after it provided them with”comprehensive technical info and access to talk with our engineers.”

“While EA does possess a patent to DDA technology, that technology never was in FIFA, Madden or NHL, and never would be,” it said in a statement. “We wouldn’t use DDA technology to give players an advantage or disadvantage in online multiplayer modes in any of our matches and we absolutely do not have it in FIFA, Madden or NHL.”

This lawsuit wasn’t the first time that EA has faced suspicions that FIFA difficulty cheats in response to player performance, however, it has at all times denied that any behind-the-scenes shenanigans are afoot. In response to a fairly thorough question on the topic published to Reddit at 2017, creative manager Matt Frior told Eurogamer that although the game’s algorithm does allow for a certain element of random chance in outcomes–sometimes even a superstar footballer is going to biff it–there”absolutely isn’t” a system set up that’s intended to respond to player performance.

If you would like a look at the entire patent that EA retains on”Dynamic Difficulty Adjustment,” here it’s .


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