Fallout fans were disappointed in 2013 after being duped into believing that Fallout 4 was imminent. The website in question, “Survivor2299,” began leaking non-descript ciphers, messages and audio clips that appeared to hint towards the release of the next incarnation from the much-loved, post-apocalyptic franchise. Fallout and Redit communities banded together and began frantically piecing together the various parts of the elaborate puzzle.
Ultimately, the Maryland game developers, Bethesda, stepped in and requested the site’s inceptor cease operations. The countdown time on the cryptic site prematurely stopped and its orchestrators announced that the entire incident was a protracted, three-week troll.
In the wake of the news, the fans’ opinions and emotions were divided. Many enjoyed deciphering the codes and relished working alongside fellow Fallout aficionados; others launched online attacks against the perpetrator of the hoax site; some saw fit to place blame on Bethesda for, allegedly, allowing the website to deceive its many customers and fans, over such a sustained period of time.
The fake Fallout 4 teaser site only appears to have fuelled the community’s insatiable desire for further knowledge of the, as yet, unannounced title. An online petition has been created on change.org by Bulgarian citizen Silviu Ploisteanu. Ploisteanu issues a simple request to Bethesda – confirm Fallout 4 is in the works, along with its setting. His “mission statement” for the petition reads:
“We do not ask for much; just throw us a bone, tell us you’re working on it. If you’re thinking the same way that I do, please SIGN this petition. You can make a difference! It’s up to you if we wait another year to get some news OR we get Bethesda’s attention on this subject now.”
He then calls upon likeminded individuals to raise awareness of his cause, suggesting they share the their intentions on social networking platforms, such as Facebook.
From the date of writing, the petition has garnered the support of over 2,900 supporters. The required target, however, is 100,000.
Other websites, including incgamers, have questioned whether such a petition could sway Bethesda’s stance. However, with dissension among Fallout fans over Bethesda’s handling of Survivor2299, it stands to reason, the developers could benefit from restoring faith to some of their disillusioned fans.
The petition also comes in the wake of Kotaku disclosing a series of leaked documents that are, allegedly, from a script for the next Fallout game. Kotaku writer Jason Schreier claims to have verified the authenticity of the documents; how Schreier was able to do so, however, remains a mystery.
The leaked documents, if genuine, confirm a Boston setting, making reference to a project codenamed “Institute.” The document also provides plot details and dialogue for a mission set inside an abandoned museum, an image of a character model and, what appears to be, a brief narration of the game’s introduction. It’s worth pointing out that plotlines, settings and characters are often fabricated for the purposes of casting and, therefore, these documents may bear no resemblance to the final game – even if they are genuine.
Meanwhile, Bethesda have declined to comment on Kotaku’s story, or the legitimacy of the leaked information. In addition, the development team are yet to officially announce Fallout 4.
By James Fenner