Who Leaked ‘Sword And Shield’ Secrets? Pokémon Lawyers Want To Catch ’Em All Who Leaked ‘Sword And Shield’ Secrets? Pokémon Lawyers Want To Catch ’Em All
Lawyers for the Pokémon game developer are hunting down unidentified individuals in America who leaked Sword and Shield game information before its release, a new lawsuit has revealed.
Pokémon Company International is particularly peeved at people who posted pictures of previously unseen Pokémon from the Sword and Shield strategy guide on Discord and 4Chan earlier this month. The pictures were also shared on mainstream social social media networks like Facebook, Twitter and Imgur as well as on popular video game sites Polygon and Dot Esports. In total, the developer found 300 Web pages on “dozens of platforms that linked to websites containing the leaked Strategy Guide pictures,” according to the suit.
The Pokémon leaks started on November 1, when a picture of a new Pokémon, Gigantamax Machamp, appeared on Discord. (The Gigantamax versions of Pokémon are given extra power before a battle, a new feature in the Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield games). Just 17 minutes later, the image was shared on 4Chan. Ten minutes later it was on Reddit. Another 18 pictures appeared on Discord, a site that started out as a gamers forum but has been abused by a number of criminal types, from child abusers to hackers.
Lawyers from Perkins Coie (a firm previously hired by Google and other tech giants) wrote that the leaks had caused “irreparable injury” to Pokémon and that the company “is entitled to damages in an amount to be proven at trial.”
Pokémon Company International isn’t suing any named individuals as yet, simply naming the defendants as “John/Jane Does” in its suit, posted Friday. It has identified four Discord users, though, after it hired outside forensic experts to hunt down the leakers. One is believed to be the person who supplied the images to the other defendants, who posted or helped post the photos online. However, as it hasn”t been able to identify the people behind the monikers, Pokémon wants to serve subpoenas on Discord and 4chan to get their help in tracking down the leakers. It’s awaiting the court’s decision.
It’s the second time in two months that a major gaming company has taken to court to deal with a leak. In October, Fortnite developers sued an individual alleging he spilled secrets about its upcoming Chapter 2 release.