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The Damaging Effects of Rumors

Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon were just revealed. What would normally be an exciting moment for a rapidly growing fandom has become a serious point of contention. There's no offensive content in the reveal, and the game looks pretty solid. So, why are people upset? For a very dangerous reason, people feel like they didn't get something they were going to.

Pokémon has never been one to adopt a system early on. When the 3DS was released, it didn't get a Pokémon game. It didn't get one until almost three years later, and the transition between DS and 3DS must be a lot more simple than that from 3DS to Switch.

Nobody should have expected that there would be a Pokémon game on the Switch this early. However, due to many things piled on top of one another, people did.

It all started with Eurogamer. In November, before the Switch had even been fully shown off, they reported on the existence of Pokémon Stars. It was to be a third installment in the story of the Alola region, similar to Pokémon Emerald and Pokémon Platinum. It was said it was going to release on the Switch and that it would include many new Pokémon.

The rumor spread like wildfire. Other leakers claimed that this leak was true, and Eurogamer was adamant about their source being reliable. Over the months since then, the public quickly began to believe that Pokémon Stars was a reality.

Then, on June 5th, a Pokémon Nintendo Direct was announced for the very next day. Tom Phillips, the Eurogamer writer who broke the story about Stars, was still maintaining that Pokémon Stars was real. People were very strongly expecting to visit Alola on their brand new console.

June 6th rolled around, and the Direct began. The presenter began the Direct, and he immediately began talking about the Nintendo Switch. 100,000 live viewers all listened intently and excitedly​, hoping to hear about Stars. However, they were surprised to see Pokken Tournament DX, an upgraded version of the original Pokken Tournament on the Wii U.

As Pokken faded away, we got a glimpse of the Alola region, busting at the seams with brand new content...on the 3DS. The live chat on the livestream exploded with despair. Twitter was flooded with complaints. At this point, we knew we weren't getting Pokémon Stars.

For months, people thought that they were for sure getting something amazing. While Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon would have most likely be one of the most exciting reveals for Pokémon fans, due to a misleading rumor, people are upset.

I don't think that Tom Phillips meant to mislead people. When you're in the business of trying to release unofficial information, you're bound to have a fake source at some point. However, I do think that people should be more careful with the information they release, and certainly with the information they believe.

I think that the chaos caused by all of this definitively proves that rumors can hurt real games. Due to these rumors, people expected something they shouldn't have, and were upset when they got something they should have expected.


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