A lawsuit against Epic Games has settled, and sees some players being randomly rewarded with 1000 V-Bucks in-game.
While Epic Games continues to make a small fortune of Fortnite, the fan-favourite battle royale game is being hit hard in the pocket. You might remember the loot box scandal from a few years ago, which was kickstarted by problems with Electronic Arts and Star Wars Battlefront II. As the issue boiled over, other big games including Rocket League and Fortnite were caught in the crossfire. With the courts tipped to settle on the side of the players, it's a scandal that's cost Epic dearly.
If Epic wasn't busy enough duking it out with Apple over the tech giant's 30% cut of in-game purchases, there's been another lawsuit bubbling away beneath the surface. Instead of taking it further, Epic has decided to settle and refund players who've been affected.
Why are Fortnite players being given 1000 V-Bucks?
According to the site Epic Games Settlement site, Epic had "violated state consumer protection laws, prevented minors from exercising their contractual disaffirmation rights, and negligently misrepresented the value of its in-game items in connection with its Fortnite and Rocket League video games". Despite Epic denying "each and every allegation of wrongdoing, liability, and damages asserted in the Action", a statement confirms Epic has settled (pending approval) to "avoid the expenses and uncertainties associated with litigation".
When Fortnite first launched with Save the World in 2017, Epic made the most of random loot boxes. As the years have gone on, there have been continued complaints about how loot boxes work in terms of unlocking specific items. Although Epic scrapped randomised loot boxers in 2019, a lawsuit has rumbled on for the past two years. The 1000 V-Bucks is compensation for players.
Epic explained the reward in a lengthy blog post and reiterated, "With preliminary approval for a class action settlement, we’re awarding 1,000 V-Bucks to anyone that purchased a random Loot Llama". The case was originally confined to the USA, but Epic has now extended the offer to players in other countries.
How can Fortnite players claim their 1,000 V-Bucks?
If you want to claim from the Loot Llama scandal, Epic said it's done automatically, with "no action needed on your part". Claims will be awarded to anyone who made a loot box purchase after July 1, 2015. Rocket League players will also be given 1000 Credits for every Rocket League account that bought a random-item Crate loot box. It's great news for those who might've bought a Loot Llama on a one-off occasion, but if you were a regular buyer, you'll only get the same 1000 V-Bucks as everyone else.
The claims don't end there though. The lawsuit has provided an additional $26.5 million in cash and other benefits for US-based players who think their purchases added to a "claim of consumer fraud, breach of contract, or other claim for damages". You can apply for a partial refund "for a purchase you made as a minor with your own money and without parental permission". If your claim is successful, you'll be awarded up to $50, 13500 V-Bucks, or 13000 Rocket League Credit. These days, Epic is a lot more transparent with its use of loot boxes and only offers X-Ray Lalames "that show you the contents before you purchase them in Save the World". With slapped wrists all around, here's hoping Epic has learned a Loot Llama Lesson.
Images via Epic Games