“Fortnite” continues to be one of the most popular video games ever, but now the game’s publisher Epic Games has been named in a class-action lawsuit launched by parents of a 10- and 15-year-old through Montreal-based legal firm Calex Legal.
According to the lawsuit, “Fortnite” is as addictive as cocaine because the game triggers the release of “pleasure hormone, dopamine” which allegedly was intentional to create such an addicting game.
The lawsuit claims that the producers of the game are taking advantage of the vulnerable, undeveloped minds of children.
“The defendants used the same tactics as the creators of slot machines, or variable reward programs, (to ensure) the dependence of its users, (and) the brain being manipulated to always want more,” the suit claims of the addictive nature of “Fortnite”, as translated by USA TODAY. “Children are particularly vulnerable to this manipulation since their self-control system in the brain is not developed enough.
“The addiction to the game Fortnite has real consequences on the lives of players, many of whom have developed problems such that they do not eat, do not shower and no longer socialize. Moreover, rehabilitation centers specifically dedicated to addiction to Fortnite have opened all over the world, particularly in Quebec and Canada, to treat people for addiction.”
Epic Games was previously named in a class action lawsuit claiming that the game needed more built-in “parental controls that would allow parents or guardians of minors to make informed decisions regarding in-app purchases.”
That lawsuit didn’t seem to slow down the popularity of “Fortnite” at all and it’s highly unlikely that one lawsuit claiming the game is as addictive and releases the same pleasure hormone’s as cocaine is going to yield different results. Sorry, parents. And just to be clear, don’t do drugs, kids. Keep your addictive behavior to the gaming consoles.