Bethesda has been blamed for a lot of things over the years, but this may be a first for the company. The video game publisher is currently being sued by a former U.S. Navy pilot, John McLaughlin, who claims that playing Oblivion: The Elder Scrolls IV lead to the loss of his flight status.
According to McLaughlin, who used to fly F-18s, he was happily playing the game on March 28, 2010, when a section illuminated by strobe lights caused “a grand mal seizure for the first time in his life” – the incident causing excruciating pain and actually breaking a bone.
[img_big]center,6189,2010-11-20/TES4Zombie.jpg,Not the scariest thing in Oblivion[/img_big]
McLaughlin used to fly F-18s, but has now permanently lost his flying status. He claims the seizure was caused by the “defective” game.
“The product was so designed that it exceeded the upper acceptable limit of more than 3 flashes over a 1 second period, as well as acceptable spatial pattern and luminance flash limits. These risks were not made known to the plaintiff and/or an ordinary consumer prior to the time of purchase.
“The defective and dangerous condition of the product, and that it was unsafe for the use and purpose for which it was intended when used by certain consumers as recommended, was expected and reasonably anticipated by the defendants, and each of them, or in the exercise of ordinary and reasonable care should have been known and discovered by defendants, and each of them.”
McLaughlin is seeking punitive and damages for product liability, breach of warranty and negligence – and Bethesda isn’t the only company being implicated in the case. McLaughlin is also suing Sony Computer Entertainment (which made the PlayStation 3 he was playing the game on when he was affected), and Bethesda‘s parent company, Zenimax Media.
(Source: Courthouse News Service)