So, the other night, this rumor spread like wildfire on Twitter and similar Nintendo fansites, and considering how it seems like a shitton of furries are into Nintendo (Seriously, anywhere you go you’ll see GIMMIE YOUR FC FOR SMASH/POKEMON/MARIO KART), I was unsurprisingly reading them as well. This rumor? Rayman, a third party character being in Super Smash Bros 4, as DLC. Now, one character already got confirmed as DLC despite fan backlash which quickly turned to WOOO WOOO CONFIRMED on the day it was revealed, and of course, as usual there were the flood of memes trying to prove it was fake with photoshops.
Eventually, it was confirmed to be fake. The creator came out and said it, while posting a video on how he did it, using Adobe After Effects, a program that literally anyone can get either with money, or by going on a torrent site and using cracks.
At the same time, being a former member of the Pokemon fanbase, something I regret more and more as I see just how terrible it actually is, this is actually familiar. This has happened several times, from the fake Shaymin Sky Forme done by a well known DeviantArt user that everyone believed was real, including many of the top fansites (This was before Nintendo started cracking down on legit leaks and websites such as Serebii, after the one leaker leaked nearly all the Generation V Pokemon and the whole movie theater incident, pleasing fans and pissing off corporate slaves), to the whole shitstorm on /vp/ and similar websites on if Greninja was real, complete with ‘shopped memes. The Spiky Eared Pichu incident was another good example, with fans thinking the new Pichu was a new Pokemon, only for disappointment to set in once it was confirmed to be a quickly forgotten special Pokemon locked to one Pokemon game (It’s not even in Generation V).
Or in 2013, when a SonicRetro member, wanting to both have fun and to prove a theory that the Sonic Fanbase was less fragmented than it actually was perceived as being (It still is pretty fragmented though, but a lot of people will still happily buy the newest Sonic game, except with Boom), posted a fake rumor, Google translated to Japanese, on /r/gaming. The point he was making? Sonic Fans do in fact want something common, despite various members in the fanbase wanting another SA2/Colors/Advance/S3K/06 “bugfixed”/whatever thanks to Sega’s frequent gameplay changes.
Or the constant stream of Halo 3 PC rumors, ever since Microsoft “slipped” it several times on websites and after PC-only gamers never got to “finish the fight” despite Halo 2 being on PC and Halo 1 still being a popular game on the PC, even 12 years after it’s initial release. The Master Chief Collection rumor got big as well after the one GAF leaker posted it, and before it was even confirmed a frequent topic on Bungie.net was “Will there be a Halo 2 Anniversary” and even before that, “Will Halo 1 get a remake for Xbox 360.” Another rumor that spread but yet hasn’t ever been confirmed (and that’s probably fake) is a CoD MW collection in a similar style for the Xbox One/PS4, which also spread because of how highly regarded CoD4 is, with MW2 being like Halo 2 in the fact that everyone loves it for the nostalgia despite it aging far worse than 4 did.
The most major one however, has been the constant stream of new Nintendo/Sega console rumors, from Sega announcing a new console despite Sega’s finincial situation, to Nintendo canning the Wii U and announcing a new console which was supposed to be super powerful, with a spec sheet reading like a fanboy’s wet dream, and hardware that made no sense in the real world or even knowing Nintendo’s business philosophy (Cablecard? Cable input? A secondary CPU for no real reason? Power8, a high end server CPU you’d see on modern descendants of the AS/400 and RS/6000, something you’d see competing with Xeons, Itaniums, and SPARCs, yet less ram than the $350 Xbox One? The spec sheet made literally, no sense, and sounded like something you’d find out of a rabid fanboy on drugs who just got banned from a few major gaming sites for spouting bullshit.
At the same time however, this only proves one point. Nearly all the fanbases I named where the rumors spread like wildfire have a few things in common. People want something so badly, that they’ll cling onto any rumor whatsoever. Nintendo fans wanting a more powerful system than the Wii U which might actually have third party (Look at all the “Gaming crash” theories), Halo fans wanting remakes or Halo 3 on PC, Sonic fans actually wanting a half decent game deep down inside (despite eating up garbage anyways), with people more outside the fanbase really pressing for a good Sonic game (Generations doesn’t count, it played too much off nostalgia yet had all the same issues as Colors/Unleashed), CoD fans wanting to play the older CoDs again, with their friends (Lots of online gamers have a “peer pressure” mentality, refusing to play the older online games unless it’s remade for some reason or wanting to play the newest one, it’s why CoD is still around despite MW3/Ghosts, same with Pokemon and Smash), Smash fans wanting a certain character, or Pokemon fans usually simply wanting more Pokemon (and waifu material).
Desperation has taken over fanbases, like the ones I mention. People want something so badly, and while some are easy to fulfill (Want to play CoD4 or Halo 3? Put the disc in the Xbox. Want Rayman in Smash? Mod Brawl), others have to be done by the company, and while some can listen to fans for feedback, others simply continue to shit more and more on their customers, especially when it’s something like having good hardware, a port to the PC, or good games. That is all I really have to say on this.