Top 10 Leaks in Video Games in the Last 5 Years
Thanks to the internet, leaks are commonplace. Whenever something new is being developed, it’s only a matter of time before details about it are put online. Leaks are a double-edged sword:
- they can assure people that whatever is being worked on is of good quality
- they can effectively build up anticipation;
- on the other hand, they can frustrate people who’d rather not know what’s coming up.
The video game industry is no stranger to leaks. From big-name releases to independent projects by smaller studios, many games have fell victim to the practice of leaking. Some would, in fact, say that leaks are often done on purpose in an attempt to drum up publicity; disgruntled employees working on the game would likely disagree.
Leaks can inadvertently get people excited about a game, but they can also reveal aspects of a game that don’t go down so well with fans. They’re mostly associated with video games, but they can happen with online casino games as well. Casino game leaks aren’t anywhere near as big or as devastating, because the games you play at casinos, such as the Sun and Moon slot machine, are designed for quick, repetitive play.
We’ll run you through 10 of the most significant leaks to happen in the video games industry over the last five years. Have a read, and you’ll see just how damaging they can be and how they can affect just about every type of game.
Pokemon Sword and Shield
Pokemon Sword and Shield suffered a number of leaks, including one that revealed not all existing Pokemon would be compatible with the game. This particular piece of information caused controversy with many long-term fans, though the games ended up becoming the franchise’s second-biggest ones, selling over 20 million copies. Two leakers who posted images from an unreleased strategy guide in2019 were recently fined $150,000 each.
Pokemon Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee
The next mainline Pokemon games, the two Let’s Go titles, also suffered leaks. A person uploaded an image from one of the games on April Fools’ Day. Because of the day, the leak took place, it was believed to be fake. However, six months later, when the games came out, people realized the leak had in fact been genuine.
Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
While most leaks involve the internet in some capacity, this one doesn’t. Due to a mix-up of some kind, an official Assassin’s CreedOdyssey keychain was shipped out to retailers before the game was officially announced. The game’s name and the keychain’s design confirmed the game would be set in ancient Greece, something the developers were hoping wouldn’t get leaked until the official announcement in 2018.
Watch Dogs Legion
Ubisoft’s Watch Dog Legion was leaked early on 3 June 2019, thanks to a listing on Amazon UK. The leak encouraged Ubisoft to announce the game earlier than planned. The listing was genuine: it included several features and details that the developer would go on to confirm during the game’s official announcement.
Fortnite is one of the biggest and most popular video games in the world right now. So it should come as no surprise that people have been keen to leak details about it. In late 2019, the game’s first chapter came to an end, and its second one began. Shortly before the second one started, the Italian iOS App Storeunintentionally posted information about the game’s second chapter, including its new map. A further leak would occur soon after, and this one would reveal a full trailer. Epic Games, Fortnite’screator, ended up suing the two quality and assurance testers responsible for the leaks.
2020 Nintendo Game Leak
The 2020 Nintendo Game Leak refers to a series of leaks that took place from 2018 to 2020. They started in March 2018 but didn’t become well-publicized until 2020. The leaked content was uploaded onto 4chan, an anonymous imageboard site. A wide range of data types was leaked, including source code for games, development tools, and internal documents. The data that’s been leaked covers several dozen games and is estimated to be more than two terabytes in size. The series of leaks has been described as unprecedented, though Nintendo has yet to respond to it.
E3, or Electronic EntertainmentExpo, is a major trade event in the video games industry. Many developers attend this event and announce upcoming games and merchandise. In 2018, shortly before that year’s E3 event was to take place, Walmart Canada accidentally uploaded a placeholder image showing a series of games – the issue was that some of these hadn’t yet been publicly announced, such as:
– Lego DC Supervillains
– Forza Horizon 4.
This leak even revealed a game, Borderlands 3, which wouldn’t be officially confirmed until the E3 event the following year.
This game is a crossover between the two franchises RavingRabbids by Ubisoft and Mario by Nintendo. It was formally announced at the 2017 E3 event, though information confirming the crossover was leaked the previous year. The game’s full title was also leaked a few months before its official announcement.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider
This game’s existence and title got confirmed in a rather strange way. In October 2016, someone riding the Montreal metro caught a glimpse of a stranger’s laptop. That stranger was working on a presentation for the yet-to-be-announced Shadow the TombRaider. As you can probably guess, the person took a photo of the revealing information, and it ended up on Reddit, effectively announcing the game to the world before its developers had the chance to do it themselves.
Usually, it’s games that are leaked. In 2016, an entire console managed to get leaked! Someone put their PS4 Slim up for sale on Gumtree – the only problem was that this console hadn’t even been announced yet. The console was confirmed to be genuine, though it remains uncertain how it ended up on Gumtree.
As you can see from this article, video game leaks are actually fairly common. Sometimes, it’s a game’s existence that’s confirmed too early; sometimes, it’s gameplay details and features. Therefore, if you want to avoid leaks and find out about new games when they’re officially announced, you should not visit gaming sites or any kind of site or forum where gaming-related news is posted.
This article has been published in accordance with Socialnomics’ disclosure policy.