Two parents are the victims of a destroyed car, thanks to their own kid, who took a hammer to the vehicle after receiving a Fortnite ban from the two people who are more than likely the most concerned with his wellbeing.
That is according to Dr. Michael Rich, who has spoken to the Boston Globe about his work with children who are suffering from gaming addiction.
Gaming disorder has been formally recognized as a mental illness by the World Health Organization and, as games go, perhaps none is more culpable than the Epic Games battle royale title. Of course, Apex Legends is well on its way to being the king of such titles, given its rapid rise. Fortnite, though, can be considered an OG in the game and has been an obsession among kids and adults alike for as long as it's been around.
Dr. Rich, who is the director of the Clinic for Interactive Media and Internet Disorders at Boston Children's Hospital, reports that he's seeing cases of children who are throwing everyday activities - such as sleeping, attending school, and participating in sports - out the window just so they could play Fortnite.
“They are not sleeping. They are not going to school. They are dropping out of social activities," he says. "A lot of kids have stopped playing sports so they can do this."
One child, in particular, smashed the windshield of his parents' vehicle because he thought the device he was using to play the game was locked in there.
“We have one kid who destroyed the family car because he thought his parents had locked his device inside,” Rich has revealed. “He took a hammer to the windshield.”
There has been no clarification as it relates to whether the device was in there or not, and it's also not clear what device it was. There's also no picture of the destroyed car, possibly as a result of patient confidentiality (sorry to disappoint).
Rich explained that children are more vulnerable to such addictions as their reward-processing brain systems are almost fully developed, but their self-control systems aren't.
So, if you're going to take Fortnite away from your kid, you're probably going to want to read the fine print in your insurance policy. It really could come to that.