MONTREAL (KRON) – A Canadian law firm has filed a class-action lawsuit on behalf of the parents of two children who are allegedly addicted to Fortnite.
The lawsuit filed by Calex Légal compares Fortnite to cocaine and tobacco, claiming that the game’s creator – Epic Games – “knowingly put on the market a very, very addictive game which was also geared toward youth.”
The parents claim Fortnite causes the brain to release dopamine much in the same way as taking drugs like cocaine, which results in a chemical addiction, according to the lawsuit.
Much of this lawsuit is based on a previous one from 2015 against tobacco companies, in which the Quebec Superior Court ruled that companies did not do enough to warn customers about the dangers of smoking.
In this case, the lawsuit alleges Epic Games knew Fortnite was “dangerously addictive” but did not warn players of the risks associated with playing.
Earlier this year, the World Health Organization officially recognized “Gaming Disorder” in its International Statistical Classification of Diseases or ICD-11.
While Fortnite includes a waiver to stop people from being part of a class action lawsuit, Calex Légal claims that, in Quebec, it would be negated by the Consumer Protection Act, which requires companies to warn customers about potential risks, like addiction.
At this time Fortnite is rated T for Teen in Canada, meaning it’s only meant for those ages 13 and up.