When the power came back on last night, I saw that the community was in one of its typical uproars over a purported series of pictures claiming to be evolutions of the Black and White starters. Reputations are being shredded and accusations flying as the community breaks down along lines that can be summed up with two infamous memes.
On one hand, you have the "GameFreak just shot itself in the foot. I don't know how much you know about these evolutions (I'm an expert)" crowd.
And on the other hand, the "This looks shopped, I can tell by some of the pixels and having seen quite a few shops in my time" group.
So with that, a special comment on the September 3 leak controversy.
For what it's worth, I'm in the latter group. There's too much evidence pointing to the fact that these were shopped - quite well, admittedly, and it's enough to fool 60% of the people which is probably what you're going for if you're out to troll.
But they're all attributing it to either 2ch - and haven't we been down this road before with believing anywhere that Anonymous hangs out? Oh, right, we did - or a Spanish website. And how in the bluest of blue hells would a Spanish website get the game early without either getting knocked off the internet by the long arm of Nintendo's lawyers or getting shot leaving Japan? As of this writing, the release time is still 12 days away, don't forget.
Even quality website owners and news staffs are reporting this as a possible fact, though with a healthy amount of skepticism. Credit to them for it, since we see news reports on rumor and speculation all the time in other media. But it's the ones that are going balls to the wall to promote a falsehood that really get my ire up.
Most of the denial evidence is coming from imageboards, but so is the original source. And let us not forget the lesson of Shaymin Sky's leak. For whatever reason, the Pokemon community attracts its fair share of people who fake it for the lulz.
With that in mind, my hierarchy for Pokemon news goes as follows, with higher beating lower in terms of where my belief is, but sites of the same level able to disprove each other:
Sold instantly: Word of God. This includes Pokemon Sunday announcements, CoroCoro and other gaming magazines, Masuda's blog, and the odd release from Pokemon Company International (remember, they announced Reshiram/Zekrom's existence).
Good chance: Pokebeach, Filb.de, and Bulbanews. They exercise the skepticism I want when reporting on news from the lower ranks, and break stuff pretty quickly.
Citation needed: Serebii, Pokejungle.. The former brings way, way too much arrogance to the news, willingly defends information proven to be false, and go so far as to disable one of my mouse buttons every time I visit the site. In tech blog terms, Pokebeach would be Engadget, and Serebii would be Gizmodo. Pokejungle, god love 'em, posts everything they get... but in Pokemon terms, their accuracy makes Horn Drill look like Aura Sphere.
No chance in hell: Anything on 2ch or a derivative (including 4chan) unless confirmed by at least level 2.
I just received inside information from a special source that there are 6 base 680 Pokemon. Zekrom and Resheram are the biological and artificial energy pokemon, respectively. There is a negative energy Pokemon as well.............. Hold, on. Here are the sprites. [Shows fake-ass picture]I think I've gone into enough reasons why you should take these things with a box of salt.
If I posted this on a Japanese web site in Japanese, it would be all over the web. - Smogon poster, hacker alias "WarriorPrince".
It's been 145 days since the formal announcement of Black and White, and as we move into the last weeks prior to Japanese release... good night, and good luck.