Leaks are begrudgingly part of the rollout of many AAA games. Communities – dedicated to leak discussions – are commonplace. From subreddits to YouTube videos, they’ve penetrated every corner of social media. To go into a game unspoilt, an Internet cleanse may be required.

Even the biggest franchise in the world – Pokémon – can’t escape from it. Some fans got copies of Gen 4 remakes Brilliant Diamond & Shining Pearl (BDSP) as early as November 9. Dataminers went to work, breaking down the game. 

Leaks and assets for the game flooded social media days from its official release. Internet discussions followed suit. And what better way to participate than with memes?

When a fan-favourite…

Credit: https://www.memedroid.com/memes/detail/2987885/The-leaks-barely-showed-how-bad-the-game-actually-was

One of the most controversial games in recent memory – 2020’s The Last of Us: Part 2 – divided its fan base before being released. The culprit? Leaks. Rumour has it that a disgruntled employee leaked portions of the script but this was debunked. Regardless, the damage was done. SPOILERS but when fan-favourite Joel was plan to be killed in early game, some were outraged and review bombed the game. The situation spiralled further and infamously.

It was nice while it lasted

Credit: https://www.reddit.com/r/MandJTV/comments/l6t4mx/my_first_meme_here_lets_see_how_this_goes/ 

For a long time, a livestream of rodent Pokémon Furret climbing an escalator was started on YouTube. It acted as a countdown to the anticipated release of Sinnoh remakes. Since then, fans have become fond of the little trouper. But, good things always come to an end. When BDSP leaked, realisation struck as Furret’s inevitable end came closer. Respects to you, little man!

Family connections

Credit: https://ifunny.co/picture/my-uncle-works-at-nintendo-and-he-sent-me-this-TRQftSTn5

Although it’s a meme now, the “uncle who worked for Nintnedo” was a stamp of approval for many leaks. As people have become more critical and internet-savvy, they largely can debunk such leaks as fake. It makes me wonder about the people who actually have relatives working for Nintendo… 

I’m a good boy

Credit: https://www.reddit.com/r/MandJTV/comments/qs86ho/the_real_story_of_my_week/ 

The feminine urge to burn everyone who had BDSP early was strong. Seeing all the leaks floating around didn’t help either. Whatever, I still have my dreams to look forward to. *cries myself to sleep* 

A Ryan Reynolds gotcha moment

Credit: https://www.reddit.com/r/pokemon/comments/bmkhbh/oc_made_with_love_for_dark_mode_users/ 

We know this is a movie leak, but it’s based on a game so close enough. Regardless, this has got to be a “leak” to remember for the ages. When Ryan Reynolds posted a lengthy video to his YouTube channel, many assumed he had leaked the entirety of 2019’s Detective Pikachu (which he starred in). It was a false alarm though, as the video was simply of the titular Detective Pikachu dancing for two hours straight. There hasn’t been a more wholesome “leak” since. 

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