It turns out that a Twitter account called TheRealInsider, the latest in a series of leaks impersonating gaming industry insiders, was actually run by YouTuber Dan Allen Gaming. The story had convinced many in the scene that it was the real deal after accurately teasing what New Assassin’s Creed Games would be revealed at Ubisoft’s 2022 Game Showcase. But it now appears that Allen was simply disclosing embargoed and privileged information he received as an influencer. “I’m sorry to everyone for my actions,” he wrote on Twitter before deleting both accounts.
Allen has 189,000 subscribers on his YouTube channel where he posts guides, interviews with voice actors and reads of everything from Multiverse at Ring of Elden. No one suspected him of secretly leaking industry marketing materials he had received under embargo until he accidentally replied to someone asking TheRealInsider a question on Twitter as Dan’s main account. Allen Gaming. After that, BloombergJason Schreier combed through past tweets from both accounts and discovered a lot of overlap.
“If it’s legit – and looking through both accounts, they certainly seem to be tweeting about the same games around the same time – that would explain how this ‘true insider’ knew the THAT codenames,” Schreier wrote in a Discord comment. “He broke the embargo himself.”
But people didn’t have to speculate for long. Allen admitted this soon after and issued an apology. “I’m sorry to everyone for my actions,” he said. “I’m ashamed and disappointed in myself. I’m going to take some time to reflect on my bad decisions, which will never happen again. To everyone who has supported me over the years, I am truly [sic] sorry to let you down.”
There is a difference between when a journalist discovers information that he considers to be in the public interest and presents it to the world, and when a person accepts an embargo or an NDA, and a company shares information in assuming details will not be released until a specified date and time.
TheRealInsider’s Biggest Claim to Fame was the leak from Ubisoftteasing the Japanese open-world RPG called Project Red and several others The Assassin’s Creed games four days before the official showcase, and before they were reported by TryHardGuides and, later that same day, Bloomberg. As Axios’ Stephen Totilo pointed out, it was the same day that Ubisoft informed the press about the showcase (My box did not participate). More often, however, the account teased things to come like hands-on previews, as in the case of Square Enix the prophesied. This list has recently made TheRealInsider one of the essentials of the Gaming Leaks and Rumors Subreddita popular watering hole for fans to speculate on upcoming releases based on industry reports and generally random tweets.
Allen’s exit comes within a week of the huge Grand Theft Auto VI leak and a Nintendo Direct where many rumored games once again failed to materialize. This has spurred a new debate about the value and ethics of leaking gaming industry secrets, which can run the gamut from where the next To fall will take place to find out if a studio has mistreated its employees. Lots of people are fed up with rumors, and developers and marketers understandably aren’t fans of having their work discussed online outside of their control, especially when it comes to incomplete or inaccurate information. Does that mean it will end soon? Consider me doubtful.
Read more: Rockstar responds to “illegal” GTA 6 Leak as the messy consequences continue
Coincidentally, the first outlet to break the news from TheRealInsider was a new post from industry insider Tom Henderson titled, what else, Insider game. While some were name review, which is even invoked on the about page where sources are encouraged to “become an insider” by reaching out, the site immediately broke after its launch yesterday when too many people tried to visit it at once. Replied an exposed fan“Damn review, see you inside.”
Updated: 9/20/22 10:00 PM ET: Allen did not return to Twitter but posted a five-minute apology video on his YouTube channel. In it, he profusely apologizes to fans, colleagues, and others, and explains that some of the supposed leaks were nothing more than educated guesses or made up.
“I mentioned silent Hill and Solid remake of Metal Gear and I can say there was no NDA there because that’s all bullshit, that’s all lies,” Allen says. He also mentions that a tease of God of War Ragnarök before Sony’s latest State of Play is, which later turned out to be correctwas based solely on Kratos voice actor Christopher Judge retweeting the stream link ahead of the presentation.
“I’ve lost industry friends, I’ve lost relationships — personal, professional, opportunities — all for you know five seconds of fame and I take full responsibility,” Allen says. “All the hate I’ve received on Twitter, that’s right, but I just had to delete it because I’ve never experienced this barrage of hate before – and again, totally justified – but I just had to m walk away from this because I’m just, you know, mentally, it’s not great to see all these things about you being aired and I’ve never been through this before.
Updated: 9/21/22 3:03 PM ET: A spokesperson for Ubisoft declined to comment specifically on its relationship with Allen, but provided the following statement more generally:
We regularly provide access and information about our games under NDA to trusted partners. When that trust is compromised or information is leaked by an individual, it is not only damaging and demoralizing for our teams, but it takes away from an exciting moment of revelation and experience for our players. Although we are not talking about an individual case, we take these matters seriously and will manage accordingly.
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