Parent Files Lawsuit Against Epic Games Over 'Predatory' Llama Loot Boxes In 'Fortnite'


Epic Game's growing list of lawsuits has a new addition. The new lawsuit is not about another allegedly stolen dance move, though. This time around, the Fortnite developer is being sued over its Llama loot boxes.

Fortnite's Llama Loot Boxes

The blind-draw loot boxes were only available in Fortnite's original Save the World co-op mode and not in the battle royale mode that catapulted the game to its popularity. These loot boxes contain in-game items that have different values. Players can choose a random box, but they won't know what's inside before doing so.

However, blind-draw loot boxes have since been obsolete after Epic Games released the update v7.30 in late January.

The lawsuit, filed by a minor and his father, Steve Altes, says that Epic Games deceived thousands of players using the Llama loot boxes. According to the plaintiff, chances of getting a box with a rare item are low, and not disclosing the odds of getting valuable in-game items pushes young players to get more loot boxes, thinking that they will eventually find a rare item from in the Llamas.

"The scheme plays out perfectly to the benefit of Epic: once players are sufficiently invested in the game, Epic induces players to purchase loot boxes in order to get better loot, which results in massive revenue to Epic," the lawsuit said.

Probing Video Game Loot Boxes

Lawmakers and regulators started scrutinizing video game loot boxes and other forms of microtransaction around 2017, when the Star Wars: Battlefront II controversy received massive backlash from the gaming community.

The game, developed by EA DICE, still required players a total of 40 hours of gameplay and 60,000 credits to unlock iconic characters, which was already too much on top of paying $60 for the game itself. The gamers' outrage led some lawmakers to take a closer look at loot boxes and microtransactions, which some argue to be borderline gambling.

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