Last week, a video surfaced which quickly circulated around the Nintendo community and got many fans excited. That video was uploaded by a random YouTube user and contained ‘leaked footage’ of the yet-to-be-released Switch firmware 5.0. Much requested features like an Internet Browser, online matchmaking, folders, voice chat and themes were shown in this update, hence the reason why quite a number of folks were blown away by it. Even I’ll admit that the video got me a bit excited. If you happen to believe what was shown in the video, then I’m sorry to say that I’m going to have to burst your bubble—it was fake.
You know, it’s stuff like this that give me so much trust issues. The creator has stepped forward on Twitter to confirm that the apparent ‘leaked video’ was actually all an elaborate fake. I did put this outcome on the table when I first saw the video, but it still kind of stings to know this all really was one big hoax.
Well guys, I'm sorry.
The Switch 5.0 Leak is OFFICIALLY fake! I'm proud to announce that I was behind the mock-up that so many of us wish that @NintendoAmerica learns from.
Thank you to everyone for your kind words, and lets all pray for a direct soon! pic.twitter.com/T17qu3FIpx
— NintenFanart (@NintenFanart) January 11, 2018
The creator has not yet explained exactly how he pulled off the video, but as salty as I am right now, even I have to say it’s still pretty impressive how well it was executed. Nevertheless, this situation makes one point very clear: never trust anything you see/read on the Internet.
As you can see, there are very crafty folks out there who can easily create things to mislead. On that note, what exactly was the creator’s intent by releasing this fake leak? It doesn’t seem to be out of malice; as in, a cruel prank. According to his statement in the tweet above, it does seem to be more along the lines of showing Nintendo features that fans would like to see brought to the Switch eventually. I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt here and just stick to considering this to being an educational, but still very cruel stunt.
This whole situation is giving me flashbacks of the NX days. If you were following Nintendo-related news at the time, then you’d know just how out of hand things got. Since Nintendo decided to keep quiet until October 2016, the result was ‘leaks’ and rumors coming out left-and-right. It seemed like every day there was one crazy new detail being thrown into the growing wildfire. Some of the rumors actually did turn out to be true, but that doesn’t change the fact that they were surrounded by quite a number of outlandish ones. Some of which were also very elaborate hoaxes, like this one. So, I want to reiterate the aforementioned point: don’t trust the Internet. There’s just far too much snake oil to slip on around here. Even if a ‘leak’/rumor looks legit enough to excite you, like this one, your best bet is still to just wait until a company makes a formal announcement. On that note, will Nintendo ever deliver the features we saw in this fake video? Speculating doesn’t really do any good, so only time will tell.