Man sues Bethesda over Fallout 4 addiction

23 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Fallout 4 addict files lawsuit blaming Bethesda for ruining his life.

Games have long been described as addictive by reviewers, as shorthand for describing how pleasurable feedback loops can lead to marathon play sessions.

It is one thing to lose a weekend or two binge-playing epic games like Bethesda Game Studio’s , but one man lost a little more than that thanks to his addiction to the studio’s hugely successful post-apocalyptic shooter. The 28-year-old says he lost his wife and his job after spending three weeks playing Fallout 4 while skipping work, not sleeping or eating, and ignoring his friends, reports RT.

According to an RT report, the (it should be noted, unnamed) man is filing a lawsuit against Bethesda Softworks and localization firm Softklab for failing to warn him that playing it would be dangerous to his health and well-being. While video game addiction is not a new phenomenon, it has become an increasingly worrying trend over the last decade, and there have been multiple deaths attributed to video game addiction, most often due to a combination of starvation, dehydration, and exhaustion when addicted gamers spend all of their time playing without any breaks for food or sleep. Earlier this year, a Chinese gamer died after sitting and playing World of Warcraft for 19 hours straight. “If I knew that this game could have become so addictive, I would have become a lot more wary of it,” read a statement from the gamer, who is now suing Bethesda Game Studios and the Russian localization firm for 500,000 roubles (around $7,000), claiming emotional distress. Obviously, there is no physical addiction caused by video games the same way as narcotics or similar drugs, but it can be as real as addictions to things like gambling or shopping.

A number of games have an option to offer reminders to take breaks after extended playing sessions, and in China, there have even been regulations requiring MMO games to utilize a fatigue system that prevents users from playing beyond a certain length of time. I should also probably point out that this is a hard one to verify, as the only English-language source I’ve run across is RT, and as we all know, unexpected things can sometimes happen in a Google translation. The suit seeks 500,000 roubles in compensation; luckily for Bethesda, that works out to about $7000, which means Todd Howard could probably pay this one out with what he finds behind his couch cushions.

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