Acting in compliance with Chinese Laws
Warframe, the third-person free-to-play shooter published and developed by Digital Extremes, has published their drop rate data according to a forum post by Live Operations & Community Producer Rebecca Ford on the game's official website.
The drop rates are listed on a very comprehensive page with thousands of entries. At a cursory glance, it appears that it may cover nearly every droppable item in the game on an individual basis. The announcement cautions players that the list is in no way wholly comprehensive nor is it guaranteed to be completely accurate; some replies to the forum post have pointed out possible inaccuracies or other hiccups with the first release of this tool.
The data for the drop rate list is generated automatically from information in the PC release of the game. Although the data is generated in this fashion, the list itself will not be updated after every hotfix; the Warframe development team wants to ensure that no new items are accidentally revealed due to having been added to the game's files after a hotfix.
Digital Extremes claims to be the first publisher to publish drop rates in such a comprehensive fashion. Aside from business reasons, game developers have legal reasons to reveal drop rates in certain markets after a law mandating the disclosure was recently passed in China; Blizzard Entertainment's Overwatch recently revealed the drop rates for items in loot boxes. However, Blizzard only revealed the drop chances for items based on their rarity and not for so many individual items as Warframe has done. Another portion of the Chinese law prohibits randomized loot from being sold on its own; Blizzard further tweaked their system to better comply with the new Chinese laws to sell a nominal amount of credits with complementary loot boxes, an issue Warframe does not appear to have due to selling largely defined item groups.
Even so, the announcement of this new initiative did not specify that the Chinese drop rate disclosure law was the reasoning behind this disclosure. Warframe does have a presence in the Chinese market under the title "Galactic Armor", and Digital Extremes is ultimately owned by a Chinese company which is (of all things) a chicken meat manufacturer called Leyou. Whether it was an order from the ownership or their own initiative, Digital Extremes has set out to go above and beyond for disclosure when it comes to drop rates.
Update: A Reddit post by Rebecca Ford was brought to our attention. A previously user-run repository of this information was taken down just under two weeks ago after in-development information had been leaked, and it appears that this may be Digital Extremes' solution to the players' demand for information on drop rates.
What do you think of the recent trend of games publishing their drop rate data? Do you think more countries ought to establish legislation mandating that video game companies reveal the drop rates of randomized loot for their games? What do you think of the drop rates in Warframe? Let us know in the comments below!