Recently, the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Religious Affairs), Datuk Idris Ahmad has claimed that the Bon Odori Festival is ‘un-Islamic’ and urged Muslims to not join the upcoming event in Shah Alam.
After the fuss over the Bon Odori festival, it appears that clawing machines are next in the pipeline of the religious authorities.
In a Facebook post by the Perlis State Mufti Department on Tuesday (7 June), it issued a statement explaining that claw machines were likened to gambling.
“Claw machines are a form of gambling as it involves the spending of money to get an item from the machine and if the person fails in the process, one will lose their money as well.” the statement reads.
“It is also a form of fraud that influences children into playing, only for the vendor’s profits.”
Thus, the department called upon Muslims to stay away from claw machines as it is considered a “great sin” in the religion.
It added that Muslims should also not operate these “gambling machines”.
Claw game: Skill or Gambling?
The claw machine is a type of arcade game where players use a claw to pick a particular item from a pile of toys or dolls inside a display case.
However, these machines are known for having a soft grip, which then costs players more to get their hands on the prizes. Nonetheless, some claw machines only give a strong grip after every “X” time, but this depends very much on the arcade operator too.
Over the years, there has been massive debate over the matter where claw machines should be considered as gambling or a test of skills.
In a debate on Reddit, one netizen said that claw machines are a game of skills, but most machines are rigged so it is almost impossible to win. “Even so, it’s not entirely random chance.” the netizen added.
Another netizen said that if the prize was cash, then it would be considered gambling and wouldn’t be legal for children to play at a mall.
Nonetheless, gambling by definition is a game of chances and this means that nobody should have the ability to influence its outcome.
However, the claw machine requires the player’s hand-eye coordination, concentration, and physical skill in the game and the player definitely plays a role in influencing the outcome.
In the meantime, arcade operators could also influence the outcome by giving players a ‘strong grip’ after every ‘X’ time or even a probability. Thus, this could be the element which requires further debate.
What do you think about this? Share your thoughts!