Two weeks prior to its release, a copy of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was leaked on the Internet. While Nintendo took immediate steps, issuing copyright violation warnings to YouTube users posting leaked content, it was still an aggravating time for fans of the game patiently awaiting its Dec. 7 release.
Now, it’s Square-Enix’s turn.
Six weeks before the game is set to be released worldwide, full playable copies of Kingdom Hearts III are circulating and footage of the full opening (Square-Enix released a sneak peek last week) and beginning gameplay have found its way online. With the amount of time people have been waiting for this title, billed as the conclusion to the story that’s been told from the beginning, fans are understandably apprehensive.
Initially reported by Eurogamer, an individual with access to copies of the game for Xbox One began selling them on the Facebook Marketplace (the posting has since been removed.) While accounts vary as to how the copies were procured, it is believed that the leaked content was posted to show prospective buyers that the game is indeed the real deal.
While it remains to be seen if the individual will be caught and possibly punished (this is Disney we’re talking about after all), fans now have to deal with an Internet that has Kingdom Hearts III spoilers lurking out there. But there are steps fans can take. IGN notes that many websites, including Twitter, and web browsers allow users to block out certain phrases. Eurogamer reports that moderators on Reddit have threatened to ban those who post or link to leaks.
In a statement released online, Director Tetsuya Nomura says that he and the rest of the team are aware of the leaks and are investigating on how they can “better this situation.” Nomura said he is grateful for fans warning each other about the leaks and asks that the leaked videos not be shared.
Nomura added content that could be considered the biggest spoilers, the game’s epilogue and secret movie, were planned to be released at a later date, so they will not appear online before the game hits store shelves.
In the meantime, fans will have to tread carefully on the Internet to avoid having parts of the game inadvertently spoiled for them. When it comes to the latest Kingdom Hearts news (a new trailer is supposed to drop within the next day or two), fans who wish to avoid spoilers should stick to reputable news sources. There are also Kingdom Hearts YouTubers who have promised to keep the spoilers off their channels; Cynical of TheGamersJoint, HMK and SkywardWing to name a few.
As far as Geekpiphany goes, let me take this time to say that as someone who has been eagerly anticipating the release of this game, I will NOT be posting or linking to spoilers or leaked content before the release date. I am planning on posting a progressive, world-by-world review of the game after it releases, but I will mark such reviews appropriately as spoilers.
I will also keep soldering forward as if there isn’t a jerkass, or a group of jerkasses, on the Internet trying to spoil this long-awaited title. So stick with Geekpiphany for analysis of the latest news and trailers, as well as the ongoing Keys to the Kingdom retrospective. As always, thanks for reading!