California resident Steve Altes, whose son plays Fortnite, has sued Epic Games on behalf of the minor over what he calls a “predatory scheme” involving loot boxes in Save the World.
Until January 2019, the premium loot boxes (loot llamas) did not disclose what items players could expect inside or the odds of receiving an item. Altes claimed that this made llamas akin to slot machines, and alleged that Epic Games has “made a fortune on in-game purchases, preying in large part on minors who are especially susceptible to such predatory tactics.”
A recent Fortnite update has changed this, however, and the loot boxes now show their contents prior to purchase.
The lawsuit reads:
Players, and particularly minors, are lured into purchasing llamas with the reasonable expectation that a purchase will result in better loot. Players are encouraged to keep purchasing llamas with the reasonable belief that repeated purchase will lead to the chance of receiving better loot and therefore improvement in performance of the game. Through both express misrepresentations and omissions, Epic markets llamas as highly likely to contain valuable loot that will increase a player’s power and prowess in the Fortnite game. But in reality, llamas do not contain the loot expected by the reasonable consumer.
The plaintiff also took issue with Epic Games not disclosing the odds of a llama carrying a rare item.
Epic Games has yet to respond to the lawsuit. The developer is already embroiled in several other Fortnite lawsuits, ranging from legal proceedings over dance emotes to legal action against the Fortnite Live festival.
[Source: Games Industry]