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Parents sue Fortnite video game maker for addictive kids

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A group of parents have sued Epic Games, claiming the company got their kids hooked on its Fortnite video game.

The lawsuit was filed in the Superior Court of Quebec and alleges that the company intentionally created the hugely popular game to be “highly addictive”, the New York Post reported Friday.

Although the parents claimed that due to the gambling their children had stopped eating, drinking and showering, the company said it was prepared to challenge these claims in court, hello america reported, noting that the online game has over 250 million registered users across the globe.

A Boston mother named Deanna Greenstein described her sons’ reactions to the game saying, “They came home from school and they didn’t want to go out and play basketball. They didn’t want to physically go out with their friends.

In a ruling on Wednesday, Judge Sylvain Lussier said the recent lawsuit did not appear “frivolous or manifestly ill-founded.”

The judge also ruled: “The court finds that there is a serious issue to be argued, supported by sufficient and specific allegations as to the existence of risks or even dangers arising from the use of Fortnite.”

Video games are designed to make users addicted through intermittent reinforcement, according to Caron, an organization that helps people recover from addiction and substance use:

The pleasure center of our brain is activated when we win, and the reward of increased dopamine makes us want to do more. But if we win so often that it becomes a certainty, then our brains can get bored – you can’t eat key lime pie four times a day. For this reason, the games are designed so that you only win once in a while. Part of the joy of playing is the anticipation of winning, and each loss is just a spur to try and win another, and our brain chases away the dopamine rush we get from the next virtual victory.

Meanwhile, the Quebec judge has ruled that people who develop addiction symptoms after playing the Fortnite video game can join the lawsuit. The Job noted that over 200 have come forward.

“There is no dollar figure attached to the lawsuit. The court will determine potential compensation,” the outlet concluded.

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