A class-action lawsuit against Epic Games’ Fortnite is going ahead in Quebec, more than three years after it was originally filed. CTV News report that parents of three Canadian children who regularly play Fortnite claim the game was created to be “highly addictive”, and allege the battle royale has caused their kids psychological and physical problems, along with financial issues. Although the families are seeking damages from Epic, no figure has been put on those yet. Epic has 30 days to appeal the case or it’ll go to trial.
The lawsuit mentions that some of the children spent hundreds of dollars on skins and dances in the game, including times when their parents weren’t aware of how much they were paying out. One child had allegedly put more than 7,700 hours into Fortnite over a period of less than two years, sometimes playing until 3am. Another was claimed to have played the battle royale for the equivalent of around 42 full days. The suit also claims that the three children missed out on meals, showers, and meeting up with their friends in real-life to spend time in Fortnite instead, with one alleged to have developed panic attacks because of the pressure of the game.
Epic told CTV News that they plan to fight the case in court, pointing to Fortnite’s “industry-leading” parental controls. "Parents can receive playtime reports that track the amount of time their child plays each week, and require parental permission before purchases are made, so that they can make the decisions that are right for their family,” said Epic spokesperson Nathalie Munoz. “ We have also recently added a daily spending limit by default for players under the age of 13.”