Pokemon Sword and Shield suffered from some of the worst leaks I’ve ever seen. Large chunks of content and the entire Pokedex were revealed well before the game’s release. Those familiar with The Pokemon Company are probably aware of their lack of sympathy for fans. The Japanese developer has shutdown more fan projects than I can name. Unsurprisingly, this is no different.
They are suing anyone involved with leaking Sword and Shield. So far, four unnamed individuals have been identified through Discord and Reddit. It’s currently thought that one central figure likely gathered the leaked material illegally and distributed it to the other three.
Not An Inside Job
Thankfully, it may not have been someone inside The Pokemon Company itself. After all, most of the leaks seem to be sourced from the game’s official strategy guide. How they got their hands on such a thing is difficult to establish. I suppose that’s exactly what The Pokemon Company is hoping to find out.
Unfortunately for the leakers, the law isn’t on their side. In the lawsuit itself, their only real listed defense is giving them a chance to prove their actions were for a ‘good cause’. This is usually exercised for whistleblowers trying to expose dodgy deeds in large companies or governments. I reckon they’ll have a tough time convincing the judge they’ve done anything necessary here.
The core of the lawsuit is determining if The Pokemon Company has a case. After reviewing if this was done by a real person and isn’t discriminatory, they have gotten the initial thumbs up. If this is fully approved, Reddit and Discord will be forced to reveal the identities of any leakers.
Above all, these events show us that leaking is not a game. Major companies have a right to reply when their work is leaked due to the sheer quantity at stake. They’ve spent millions on marketing and development and they’re not going to let one Reddit user ruin that. As far as I’m concerned, these leakers are now living day by day. Sooner or later, their time will come.