After a long fight for dominance, it seems that Fortnite has definitively clawed its way to the top of the video game battle royale ... battle royale. Thanks to over 125 million players and over 125 million moms' stolen credit cards, Fortnite is breaking video game records left, right, and center. And after a recent study into UK marriages, it's now eligible to enter yet another video game hall of fame: games so popular that they ruin their player's lives.
In a strange testament to the game's ridiculous popularity, Fortnite is now being cited as one of the leading causes for divorce in the UK aside from money troubles, breakdowns in communication, and discovering your spouse has a secret second family in Wales. According to Divorce Online, the premier online resource for all your UK divorcing needs, the game has been cited as a reason for divorce in 200 official court petitions, roughly 5 percent of all 2018 cases.
Sadly, the research does not say why exactly Fortnite is the cause of so many breakups. Did they catch their loved ones shouting obscenities at a ten-year-old for stealing their loot crate one too many times? Is it because they're spending hundreds of pounds on clothes and little dances in a supposedly free-to-play game? Or is it just because the game's so addictive that they barely get to spend any time with their partner? Although we always figured that you could easily maintain a marriage and several hobbies during all the time the servers are down.
While the people at Epic Games are probably high-fiving themselves over this free piece of silly publicity, this headline puts Fortnite in a long list of online games accused of getting people so obsessed that it hurts their well-being. In its heyday, World Of Warcraft was linked to an increase in college dropouts, and in 2005 a South Korean man was reported to have dropped dead after playing Starcraft for 50 hours straight.
And stories like these (and the fact that it's no longer just politically irrelevant teenagers who are getting hurt) have led to the World Health Organization classifying "gaming disorder" as a bona fide addiction disease in 2018. And in Britain, the National Health Service has recently opened its first video game addiction rehab center. So in the future, expect social workers to start talking about checking your loved ones for gamer's thumb the same way you would a drug addict for needle tracks or a cheating spouse's phone for Snapchat apps.
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