This New Nintendo Leak Looks Fishy AF

A new Nintendo leak is making the rounds online that claims an upcoming Nintendo Direct will reveal the Nintendo Switch Pro as well as a slate of high-profile first and third-party games in 2021. I hate to burst everyone’s bubble, but this is almost certainly a fake leak.

Fake Nintendo leaks are pretty common. Leaks about new Smash characters and dormant franchises seem to surface every few months. Not counting minis, indie, and partner showcases, it’s been over a year since the last Nintendo Direct. Nintendo has become so reclusive over the last year that one of the most common fake leaks throughout 2020 was for upcoming Nintendo Directs themselves.

This newest leak is a real doozy. It reads like a Nintendo fan’s wishlist the likes of which we haven’t seen since the infamous Grinch Leak for Smash. Unfortunately, there are a few tell-tale signs here that make it very unlikely that this list is real.

The leak, a photograph of a supposed internal document from Nintendo, has a couple of red flags right at the top. The Nintendo logo used here, red text on a white background, hasn’t been used officially since 2oo8. The current logo is white with a red background and slightly smaller font. Further, the bold and underlined INTERNAL USE ONLY is a pretty obvious indication that this was something made to look official, rather than the real deal. I’m not sure under what circumstances a plain text document like this would exist that lays out all the years unannounced releases, but it would be restricted to the fewest eyes imaginable and likely wouldn’t need to include “internal use only.” It’s a label that’s necessary when something is widely distributed throughout a corporate environment, which would certainly not be the case for unannounced Switch titles.

The next line reads “Nintendo Direct 01/11/2021,” suggesting that everything that follows will be revealed during that livestream. Obviously, we’re long overdue for a Nintendo showcase, and it’s a pretty safe guess that one is happening soon, given how little we know about the games coming to the Switch in 2021. It could even come on January 11. Other Nintendo Directs have happened on a Monday, so it’s possible. But it would be nothing more than a lucky guess from the leaker as far as I’m concerned.

The first big reveal on the list is the Nintendo Switch Pro. The often rumored upgrade to the Nintendo Switch has been circling around the rumor mill for years at this point. It seems like it could happen this year, given the evidence and Nintendo’s indefinite responses when asked about it. The issue I have with this leak is the name. Nintendo Switch Pro is the fan moniker we’ve used in place of an official name. It seems suspect that Nintendo would call their upgraded Switch the the name that the community has invented for it.

Then we get into a long list of unannounced games that is sure to make any Nintendo fan very excited. If this list was true and all of these games were coming out in 2021, including Splatoon 3, Mario Kart 9, Super Mario Odyssey 2, Fire Emblem Echoes: Path of Radiance, and Nintendo World: Park Tour, this would be the single biggest year for first-party Nintendo games ever. I wish this was a real list too, but it’s just too farfetched.

Look closely and you’ll see some pretty obvious mistakes. There are typos on the list like Yakuza 6: The song of Life instead of The Song of Life, Fallout: New Vegas is written as Fallout 3: New Vegas, and some games are listed with their publisher in the title while others are not.

The creator of this document calls a couple of shots, which is interesting. Often leakers will keep things vague and stick to games that are already rumored or announced so that the leak is mostly right even if it isn’t an actual leak. In this case, the leaker has come up with some actual titles of announced games.

The leak names the upcoming Breath of the Wild sequel. Called The Legend of Zelda: Echoes of the Past, the leak claims that next Monday’s Nintendo Direct will show a gameplay trailer before revealing the release date is 4/23/2021.

The leak also names a new Kingdom Hearts game, Destiny’s Embrace, and a new Metroid game called Metroid Resurgence. Destiny’s Embrace stands out as that is the name of Kairi’s keyblade and there have been rumors that an upcoming Kingdom Hearts game would feature Kairi as a playable character, but that connection, to me, is even more evidence that this is a phony leak. Kingdom Hearts games have never had titles with clear meanings and connections to other games. If they wanted to invent a Kingdom Hearts title, they should have made something that sounds more believably ridiculous.

I wish it was real, but there are just too many red flags. The good news is that a Nintendo Direct is coming, sooner or later, and there’s every reason to believe that Nintendo will reveal some exciting games coming in 2021. This just isn’t it.

Next: Luigi’s Mansion 3 Developer Next Level Games To Be Acquired By Nintendo

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Eric Switzer is the Livestream News Editor for TheGamer as well as the lead for VR and Tech. He has written about comics and film for Bloody Disgusting and VFXwire. He is a graduate of University of Missouri – Columbia and Vancouver Film School. Eric loves board games, fan conventions, new technology, and his sweet sweet kitties Bruce and Babs. Favorite games include Destiny 2, Kingdom Hearts, Super Metroid, and Prey…but mostly Prey. His favorite Pokémon is Umbreon.

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